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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 2:16 am 
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Thanks for writing oldfiddler. Sounds like the sort of whistle I'm looking for: a Goldie only quieter and costing a little less. So I can gauge how easy the second octave is, what "strength" is your Goldie High D, soft, medium or hard blower? And how much breath does the Le Meur D use?

Another question. How much backpressure does it have? Thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 3:23 am 
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I'm not really sure what strength the Goldie is I'm afraid.

For breath the JPLM uses a little less than the Goldie and about the same as my Burke narrow bore.

For back pressure LPLM = Burke and both a little less than the Goldie.


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 3:51 am 
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What about Harper? How would they fit with my requirements in terms of backpressure, rounded holes and particularly volume?


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 10:34 am 
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Hi Mike,

I have impempe, goldie, syn, kerry, dixon, killarney ( very good whistles also) , merlin, generation, feadog, harper, .....
To me it is not all about loudness but about shrillness. In a session almost any high d will be heard as loud. It is not loud in decibels but it is high. In a symphonic orchestra the only instrument that always comes out of it, relatively loud, is the piccolo.

And to me the syn is a rather warm high d whistle with the other characteristics you asked for, and relatively well tolerated by my family members, allthough they will allways prefer a louder Bb whistle or A whistle yo a high d. The killarneys are imo not that loud ( decibels) but a bit more shrill/open then the syns.

Sorry for the late response.

Greets


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 1:36 am 
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Thanks for your thoughts. Ideally I would like a whistle that is not loud (decibels) nor shrill. I am unlikely ever to take part in a session. Maybe a narrow bore like the Bracker might suit me best though I'm now leaning towards talking with Colin Goldie about what he can do in terms of a quieter whistle.


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 3:53 am 
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Mikethebook wrote:
I mainly play Goldie Low Ds but would now like to buy a more expensive High D... a thick-walled whistle with chamfered or rounded holes and a decent amount of back pressure...


Do you mean that of all the various High D whistles you've played, you prefer thick-walled ones?

Or is it a transference of Low D characteristics to High Ds, in a theoretical sort of way?

Because I've found over the years that generally the people who make Low Whistles that I really like make High Whistles that I don't care for. It's as if the very characteristics that make for a good Low Whistle make for a funky High Whistle (to my eyes anyhow).

The best example that I can think of is whistles by Bernard Overton. I played Overton Low Whistles for many years going back to around 1980. But I didn't like his High Whistles at all, at least the several I tried over the years, super-loud with shouting difficult high notes. Ditto Susatos, which for me get better as they get lower.

My preference in High Whistles is the opposite: extremely sweet-playing whistles like good vintage Feadogs and Generations and new whistles like Killarneys and Sindts. (Who can say what a Feadog or Generation Low D would have sounded like, probably not very good.)

For me at least Low and High whistles are entirely different beasts.

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1978 Quinn uilleann pipes
1945 Starck Highland pipes
Goldie Low D whistle


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 5:02 am 
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Interesting, Richard. I totally understand where you're coming from on this and I would imagine many people agree with your thinking. But, of all the High D whistles I've played, I've preferred thick-walled ones . . . though there has only been one of those, the Goldie-like Lofgren which I ended up selling to fund another low whistle, a decision I regret because prices are now, quite understandably, more in line with Goldies these days.

I prefer the thick walls because of the feel of the slightly sunken holes and the less bird-like quality of the tone. I've owned a Sindt and a Killarney and though I liked the quieter quality, I wasn't so keen on the tone or the feel of the thinner tube under my fingers. There are pros like Finnegan, Mike McGoldrick and Marc Duff who almost exclusively play Goldies from low to high. I can't off-hand think of any others. I assume it is because of the consistency in feel, playability and tone. I did like the tone of Brian's High D at the workshop. It was just a little on the loud side for me.

Increasingly, I think I may find my answer with Colin Goldie. He may be able to make me a quieter High D, though another thought comes to me. Since the whistle is for playing at home, it doesn't need to be a D, just a high whistle that I can play comfortably with the tips of my fingers i.e. anything down to B (Bb I find a bit of a stretch). A narrow-bore B with D tubing might be a solution, a quieter and less shrill high whistle that I can use at home for playing dance tunes.


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Thu Jun 08, 2017 5:35 am 
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Fair enough. I've never played a Goldie high whistle.

The exception to the low/high dichotomy I've often experienced is Burke. His whistles are remarkably consistent over the various keys, the things I like and the things I don't like equally present in all.

Ditto Copeland. Some of the finest high Ds and low Ds I've heard have been vintage Copelands.

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1978 Quinn uilleann pipes
1945 Starck Highland pipes
Goldie Low D whistle


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2017 10:12 pm 
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Have you thought of a whistle by David Furman of Clover Flutes?
I leave link to the review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YLrFqTyicks


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Tue Jun 13, 2017 1:49 am 
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Thanks for the review. I'll check it out but with them being made outside of the UK import duties would be an issue.


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2017 7:57 pm 
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Mike,
The Lofgren D is not a quiet whistle. I thought you had a Lofgren already and sold it?
If I am playing around the house I prefer to play my Timothy Potter whistle. It is a small bore, thin walled trad whistle. Not exactly what you wanted but anything on the quieter side is going to have a smaller bore. IMHO

http://www.tjpottermusic.com/products/whistles.htm

The price is very reasonable. I have owned and tried a lot of high end D's over the years so I could highly recommend a Potter to anyone.

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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2017 9:30 pm 
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I did own a Lofgren at one time but can't recall how loud it was. I thought it was probably quieter than a Goldie but, as you say, not a quiet whistle.
Quote:
Anything on the quieter side is going to have a smaller bore. IMHO
I think you might have a good point and I'm veering towards a NB Bracker or a Goldie if Colin can make such a whistle. But the Potter interests me. I didn't realise it was a narrow bore whistle though the trad design and probably lack of backpressure doesn't appeal as much. I tried a Shush and it was quiet but I prefer thicker-walled whistles.


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Thu Jun 15, 2017 9:09 am 
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Mike,

You've spent many years, bought and sold many low whistles to find the one that you like and I dare say that finding the right soprano D whistles might take a similar effort.

From my experience the jump between the Low D and the high D are quite different. You might have to put your expectations aside and keep an open mind towards the whistle that you eventually end up with.

I tried a Bracker Low D and soprano D when they were on tour in the US. Just so you know, they are made out of thin walled aluminum. I didn't love the soprano D right away but it grew on me and left a lasting impression after it was gone. It has a noticeable back pressure with a very clear sound that may not strike your fancy but it did blend well with other instruments and the highest notes were not piercing or overly loud. What I am saying is that sometimes our perception of a whistle is different when we play it verses how it sounds out in front of us.

Blayne Chastain made a recording of the Bracker soprano D while it was on tour and the sound sample is available on the Bracker whistle website. I thought the recording sounded really good with Blayne playing that whistle.

Over the years I have focused my efforts on the soprano D whistle. In the beginning I bought or tried everything I could get my hands on! Of course it would be nice to keep a sample of everything for reference but eventually I ended up selling most of my soprano D whistles because it wasn't what I wanted (and for financial reasons of course). My tastes have changed a little over the years too!

Just my humble opinion!

Cheers,
Nate

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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Thu Jun 15, 2017 9:47 am 
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Nate,
Thanks for your thoughts. No question, the Goldie Low D is my daily go-to whistle and my main focus is on "airs" and Davy Spillane's pieces but after going to the Brian Finnegan workshop, I have a hankering again to have one decent soprano whistle that is not too loud or shrieky (which is why a narrow bore B or Bb might be a better choice) which I can comfortably play with my fingertips and with which I can play not only high airs but also jigs and reels that I like. The practice will also help me with speeding up on the Low D.

My non-tuneable Dixon high D is okay. The holes are nicely rounded and it's comfortable but I think I prefer a metallic tone. Now that you mention it the pure tone of the Bracker might not be so much to my liking as the more complex Goldie tone. Of all the high whistles I've played, the Lofgren was the nicest in terms of tone and feel, not far removed from the Goldie, but it was louder than I liked and I sold it in favour of more cash for low whistles at the time. I have already tried many high Ds, mostly trad designs and there's not doubt I much prefer thicker metal under my fingers and deep rounded holes as well as a decent amount of backpressure but finding that formula in a narrow bore whistle is not so easy. Bracker and Goldie may be the only options.

Cheers
Mike


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 Post subject: Re: Choosing a high D
PostPosted: Thu Jun 15, 2017 11:47 am 
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Mike,

It sounds like you've got your work cut out for you. Finding one good D whistle is an ongoing process. A few years back I sold all my high end whistles that I didn't particularly love. Not that they weren't good or lovable but when you have a box of high end whistles sitting around not being used and money is needed then a person might eventually part with them. I sold everything off and kept the one soprano D that I though I would be happy with. At the time it was a narrow bore Reyburn. It has a small amount of backpressure that you can lean into when necessary. Loud enough to be heard in a low to medium session. Good tuning and slightly complex tone. I take it with me every time I head out the door for a musical get together. I play the Potter at home but not at a session. I like the Lofgren but fall back on the Reyburn. I'm pretty happy with no immediate needs but you never not when a new whistle may pop up. My friend Lisa recently loaned me a new Burke narrow bore. It has a lot of good attributes but I just couldn't pull the trigger on that one. A story for another time.

In the last few years I have added a few extra D whistles just because I like D whistles and you can play them with recordings and at traditional Irish get together s . Now I have a Lon Dub plastic whistle because it has the most in tune C nat, a Killarney, Timothy Potter and a Lofgren D that you sold to Lisa D. and now I own it.

I like those Goldies but I have trouble with them clogging in the colder months. The windway on a soprano Goldie D is very small and narrow. Not as noticeable in the summer but in the winter months it is an uphill battle trying to keep her warm and lubed up (I have a Goldie C). Pucker your cheeks and give it a go. Ha ha. I don't have near the problems with my Lofgren whistles but that is another story all together.

Cheers,
Nate

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