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PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2019 11:54 am 
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Howdy, I'm wondering if there are any other reputable makers that you guys have come across that make synthetic baroque flutes besides, Aulos, Vincent Bernolin and Fabio Di Natale. Thanks for any insights.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 26, 2020 5:42 am 
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There is, at last, a new option. Luca Ripanti, who is an experienced flute player, recently started building his own copies of baroque flutes, in wood as well as in synthetic resin (https://www.ripantibaroqueflutes.com/en/). I just bought one of his synthetic resin GA Rottenburgh's and I'm completely in love with this flute, one can tell that this instrument is made by a great musician to meet his own high standards. I have a grenadilla Stanesby Jr. copy which I love very much, but so far I have a preference for Luca's instrument in synthetic resin (I could never imagine this).

To compare to other options mentioned in the original post, I can compare to Aulos Stanesby Jr. which I also own. Luca's Rottenburgh is infinitely better (this said I still like my Aulos and am not ready to part with it).To be more specific, it is better in terms of response, intonation (Aulos's Stanesby has some intonation particularities which are totally authentic though and are not due to the molding process as some speculate), expressiveness, and tone, but also the mechanics of the key is much more optimal (Aulos's key is quite stiff which is not ideal for the equilibrium). I haven't tried any of Vincent Bernolin's baroque flutes, because I strongly dislike their tone in the recordings on his website, but maybe it's just his poor recording technique. What I know is that Vincent uses less dense resin (1.1 g/cm3) than the one used by Luca Ripanti, which could technically explain the difference in tone. As to Fabio di Natale, his synthetic resin flutes are way too expensive for me.

By the way, Luca Ripanti occasionally sells some of the flutes he already build on Ebay. I think he does it to finance his new project which is to make his own Palanca copies (Carlo Palanca was from Turin and that is where Luca is located). This is how I got my Rottenburgh. With some luck, one can get an incredible deal.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 26, 2020 6:01 am 
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skap wrote:
I haven't tried any of Vincent Bernolin's baroque flutes, because I strongly dislike their tone in the recordings on his website, but maybe it's just his poor recording technique.

Strong subjective statements there! I've just listened to the samples on Luca Ripanti's site and don't hear anything that necessarily suggests better tone or recording technique. But I do think it's good that more makers are now offering quality baroque flutes in synthetic materials and hope they all do well.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 26, 2020 7:27 am 
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Peter. It's totally subjective, I admit (but this is what prevented me from buying one of Bernolin's). Nevertheless, I don't think you will argue that the recordings of Luca do sound different from those on Vincent's site. There's of course the reverberation which is very different, but I also suspect that Vincent's files suffer from agressive MP3 compression which messes up the high harmonics. The resulting sound is very harsh to my ears, and I assumed it was partially due to the synthetic material, but I am most likely wrong.

As I said I have two Stanesby Jr., one in plastic, one in grenadilla (African blackwood), so I thought I knew the difference between the two materials, but Luca's flute sounds much more like my grenadilla one (by the way, Aulos Stanesby is made of very dense plastic as well but it sounds different). So, wow ! If Bernolin's traversi sound like that I'm a fool for not buying one before. If you have one, and you can compare it to other flutes you have (tone wise, I don't doubt its other qualities), I would really appreciate your feedback. I'm still looking at Bernolin's Hotteterre model (I would prefer it to be in low baroque pitch, but well, what can I do). I think it would be interesting for many people who, like me, hesitate.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 26, 2020 8:01 am 
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skap wrote:
Nevertheless, I don't think you will argue that the recordings of Luca do sound different from those on Vincent's site.

But Vincent's recordings come from a variety of sources and sound very different from each other... some harder and/or more reverberant, and some sweeter and/or drier. Compare, for instance, the Pauline Lodéon samples to the Robert Turner one on https://www.traversos-bernolin.com/english/index.htm (I won't spoil it by telling you which I'd place in which camp).

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The resulting sound is very harsh to my ears, and I assumed it was partially due to the synthetic material, but I am most likely wrong.

He also has the boxwood vs. resin comparison from Véronique Jamain, both of which sound good to me, if different again from those above.

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If you have one, and you can compare it to other flutes you have (tone wise, I don't doubt its other qualities), I would really appreciate your feedback.

I'm afraid there's not much useful I can tell you here. I'm just an occasional baroque flute player, and no expert. I have a Bernolin Delusse with Palanca-style embouchure (chosen because I like playing classical repertoire too) at 415 Hz and previously had an Aulos Grenser at 440 Hz, but sold that when I got the Bernolin, so can't compare where I'd be comparing apples and oranges even if I could.

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