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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2019 10:24 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 25, 2014 11:40 am
Posts: 4
Hi, hopefully it is OK to post a plain review despite otherwise having been quite inactive.

I recently acquired a blackwood flute with six keys, made by a Hungarian flute maker Barna Gabos. I had been looking for a keyed flute for some time, and tried some from a few well-known makers. Usually only a few tunes at once, though, so of course I might have liked those more if I spent more time to adjust myself. Anyway, this flute from Barna, it seemed like it immediately worked better for me than other flutes I had played, including the ones that were very familiar to me.

As the maker describes on his web site, his Irish flutes are Pratten-style instruments and the one I got is such as well. As far as I can tell, the overall appearance is pretty standard for this kind of flute. Because my (possibly inaccurate, feel free to correct) impression is that Pratten-style flutes often have bigger holes, I was initially worried that my relatively small hands would have trouble covering the them. Fortunately there is no problem at all with reaching them.

The flute seems easy to play in tune, and it responds well over the range of notes between bottom D4 and "third octave" D6. Bottom D is powerful and it has quite complex, buzzy tone which I like. Also other low notes share these qualities, but the D seems especially so. The higher notes up to D6 are easy to play as well. I don't really use anything above that.

For purposes of this review, it is a bit unfortunate that this is my first keyed flute. Keys seem to be a fairly new feature on Gabos' flutes, so it would be interesting if I could compare them to keys by some other maker. Regardless, I can at least say that the keys work as I would expect and have enabled me to play tunes that I have found difficult to do on a keyless D flute. So far I have not had any real problems with the keys, and Barna has indicated that he will be happy to help if any adjustments are needed. In absence of much insight on the keys, I tried to take a few pictures.

The headjoint is fully lined and cork joints are used between the pieces. These seem to be something where different makers do very different decisions on otherwise similar flutes.

Overall I am very happy with the flute and would recommend Gabos' flutes, especially the keyless ones which I think he has been making for many years. Of a keyed one I can not really fully tell yet, but so far it seems promising, especially given how helpful the maker seems to be. Of course this is based only on one example, but to me it seems that his current pricing level and especially the waiting times are very competitive for such nice instruments.

It seems very difficult to post pictures so that they would be hosted on the forum, so here are links to an external server that has them. Hopefully the links stay stable at least for a while.



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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:33 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2002 6:00 pm
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Location: Lawrence, KS
Beautiful flute and nice review.

Eric


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 01, 2019 8:50 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2018 11:27 am
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Location: Vancouver, WA
I've had one of Barna's keyless tigerwood flutes for a little while now and your comments about how his flutes play are completely in line with my experience so far. I'm thrilled with mine. If I were in the market for keys he'd be on my shortlist for sure. :)

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Bob


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2019 6:57 am 
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Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2012 1:36 pm
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Can you also get into third octave notes higher than D6?


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2019 1:20 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 25, 2014 11:40 am
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E6 I can get quite reliably. I have not practiced further and right now I would certainly upset someone by trying. I will mention if I at some point manage to try somewhere up from that, likely G6 at most.


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