/ / 11 Best Tenor Saxophone Ligatures 2021 For Improved Sound & Security

11 Best Tenor Saxophone Ligatures 2021 For Improved Sound & Security

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Best Tenor Saxophone Ligatures

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So, what part of your tenor saxophone affects your instrument’s tone? The right answer is every part.

And, of course, it depends a lot on the person playing the sax too. But in this guide, we’re talking tenor saxophone ligatures.

The ligature can affect your instrument’s performance, tone, as well as its overall “tightness” (how the components function together).

So, let’s dive right in. Here are the best tenor saxophone ligatures for improved sound and security.

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Vandoren LC08P Optimum Ligature And Plastic Cap For Tenor Saxophone

Vandoren LC08P Optimum Ligature And Plastic Cap For Tenor Saxophone

The Vandoren LC08P Optimum ligature offers quick and precise tightening. It allows for more expression, and dynamics across the entire range of your instrument. This ligature also keeps your reed firm on your mouthpiece table.

This ligature features an adjustment screw that’s threaded through both posts of the ligature. This allows for more even pressure on the reed and ensures that your reeds perform up to your expectations.

Three interchangeable pressure plates with varying pressure points are also included. These allow for different timbres.

Buyers thought this ligature was worth every penny and were able to get a quality tone out of their instrument with it.

Others questioned the quality of the ligature, and some were even disappointed.

But overall, this is still a highly rated tenor sax ligature.

Item weight: 2.08 ounces

Package dimensions: 5 x 2.25 x 2.25 inches

Vandoren LC28P Leather Ligature And Plastic Cap For Tenor Saxophone

Vandoren LC28P Leather Ligature And Plastic Cap For Tenor Saxophone

The Vandoren LC28P leather ligature is made from high impact plastic and is everything you would expect from Vandoren. It allows you to play with more expressiveness, and it comes with three pressure plates designed to customize your playing.

It features a handcrafted leather finish, and it’s got a Optimum adjustment screw as well.

Most buyers liked the Vandoren, and some even said they couldn’t imagine a ligature that works any better.

There were less happy buyers who said the ligature didn’t last long, and some also said it has some limitations but were not specific with their criticism.

Item weight: 2.72 ounces

Package dimensions: 5 x 2.25 x 2.25 inches

Francois Louis Ultimate – Brass (Size XL) Tenor Saxophone Ligature

Francois Louis Ultimate – Brass (Size XL) Tenor Saxophone Ligature

Francois Louis has a long history of working with the top artists – people like Joe Lovano, Bob Berg, Tim Ries, David Sanchez, and others.

The Francois Louis Ultimate tenor saxophone ligature comes with a unique smart cap design that reveals the mouthpiece line.

Users have said this ligature holds the reed nice and tight. It also allows for a bigger, more resonant, more vibrant, and brighter tone overall.

Some customers did have issues with setup though.

Item weight: 1.58 ounces

Package dimensions: 5 x 3.3 x 1.7 inches

Rovner P-2R Platinum Tenor Sax Ligature

Rovner P-2R Platinum Tenor Sax Ligature

The US made Rovner P-2R platinum tenor sax ligature offers a pure, dark, bell-like tone. The manufacturer promises effortless playing, evenness of scale, smoothing out difficult transitions between registers, more control, and perfect intonation.

Well, they certainly like to speak highly of their products.

The ligature features a durable design with highly tempered metal alloy. They even say it’s “as beautiful as a fine piece of jewelry.”

Many reviewers loved the ligature, and some couldn’t even believe the difference it made compared to the ligatures they used to be using.

There was one buyer who questioned whether Rovner’s quality control has gone south. But they were in the decided minority and we can’t say whether this thought holds any water.

Item weight: 1.6 ounces

Package dimensions: 1.7 x 1.7 x 4.5 inches

Vandoren LC58DP M/O Ligature And Plastic Cap For Tenor Saxophone

Vandoren LC58DP M/O Ligature And Plastic Cap For Tenor Saxophone

The Vandoren LC54DP M/O ligature and plastic cap is lightweight, easy to set up, offers quick symmetrical tightening with a unique double-track screw mechanism, and inverted tightening with two small contact points on the reed.

Customers loved the ligature, and some even said it offered more free vibration and sound than the Optimum design.

Some found it to be a little undersized though.

Item weight: 0.8 ounces

Package dimensions: 5 x 2.25 x 2.25 inches

BG L24RJ Tenor Saxophone Revelation Jazz Ligature With Cap – Otto Link

BG L24RJ Tenor Saxophone Revelation Jazz Ligature With Cap – Otto Link

The BG L24RJ tenor saxophone ligature with cap fits most common ligatures, helps prevent chipping and breaking of alto sax mouthpieces, and is a reliable, good quality product.

Several buyers thought it was an excellent ligature.

But to be fair, there are plenty of mixed reviews for this one.  The main complaint we see, though, is that the ligature didn’t fit correctly. It’s always a good idea to check whether the product is compatible with your instrument before purchase.

Item weight: 1.06 ounces

Package dimensions: 1 x 1 x 1 inches

D’Addario HTS1G Woodwinds H-Ligature & Cap, Tenor Sax

D’Addario HTS1G Woodwinds H-Ligature & Cap, Tenor Sax

The D’Addario HTS1G tenor sax woodwinds H-ligature and cap is for hard rubber mouthpieces. It comes in gold and silver. The four-point “H” system applies equal pressure, and it has a two-screw, inverted design.

This ligature took inspiration from the retro Harrison ligature.

Buyers liked its vibration, build quality, and even positioning.

Even those who were less happy about their purchase apparently liked the ligature, but said it might require some adjustment.

Item weight: 0.896 ounces

Package dimensions: 3.94 x 0.93 x 1.43 inches

Rovner L-2R(L-8) Tenor Saxophone Ligature

Rovner L-2R(L-8) Tenor Saxophone Ligature

The Rovner L-2R(L-8) tenor sax ligature has been designed for contemporary playing. It allows for a more responsive and free playing sound. Manufacturer points out jazz players should consider this an advantage.

This ligature holds your reed to the mouthpiece with no pressure points.

Users loved that these ligatures were affordable, offered a full sound, and liked the quality too.

Item weight: 1.6 ounces

Package dimensions: 2 x 1 x 2 inches

Rovner Tenor Sax Ligature 2R

Rovner Tenor Sax Ligature 2R

The Rovner 2R tenor sax ligature offers a full, centered tone and is enjoyed by classical performers because of its warm sound. This ligature holds the reed to the mouthpiece with no pressure points.

Buyers thought it worked great, found it easy to use, and it offered a fuller sound too.

A small number of buyers found minor issues with the ligature. One said they weren’t satisfied with the tone, as it was too dark.

Item weight: 1.6 ounces

Package dimensions: 2 x 1 x 2 inches

Rico Ligature, Tenor Sax For Hard Rubber Mouthpieces, Nickel Plated

Rico Ligature, Tenor Sax For Hard Rubber Mouthpieces, Nickel Plated

The Rico tenor sax ligature is nickel plated. It does not come with a cap (sold separately). It comes with a four-point system to apply equal pressure, and it has a two-screw, inverted design.

This ligature has been designed to fit a variety of mouthpieces and is compatible with the new Rico cap.

Reviewers said it was effective and inexpensive.

Not everyone was crazy about it, though, and some suggested seeking out better alternatives. What’s important to keep in mind, though, is that this is a budget option, and it isn’t likely to be perfect.

Item weight: 0.64 ounces

Package dimensions: 3.94 x 0.93 x 1.43 inches

Andoer Leather Ligature Fastener With Plastic Cap For Tenor Sax

Andoer Leather Ligature Fastener With Plastic Cap For Tenor Sax

The Andoer leather ligature fastener is another budget option for those who need something simple and cheap. It has been designed for use with Bakelite mouthpieces. It offers an even tone, and the plastic cap protects your mouthpiece. The ligature is durable.

Overall, buyers had a positive experience with the Andoer ligature and liked that it was affordable too.

This isn’t going to be for everyone, however, especially considering its price.

Negative users didn’t have any major issues with it – just that their order took a while to arrive.

Item weight: 0.704 ounces

Package dimensions: 4.96 x 2.83 x 1.65 inches

What Should I Look For In A Tenor Saxophone Ligature?

If you’ve been playing tenor saxophone for a while, then chances are you already have a good idea what you need. That said, too many options can be overwhelming, and finding your “home base” can sometimes be a challenge.

So, here we’re going to offer some additional guidance on how to choose a tenor saxophone ligature.

We’ll be looking at three basic criteria specifically. They are as follows:

  • Fit
  • Sound
  • Budget

But like I said, there isn’t much to this. You should be able to arrive at a buying decision that makes sense to you relatively quickly.

With that, here are some tips and suggestions.

Fit

There are different ligatures for different applications. So, make sure you know what you need based on your instrument, mouthpiece, and reed.

Also, some ligatures tend to do a better job of holding your mouthpiece in place than others. We’ve highlighted some of the best products above, and we think they will all do the job, but it’s always worth checking the product specifications and customer reviews before purchase.

So, always check to make sure you’re purchasing the right product for your instrument, mouthpiece, reed, and so forth. In general, this is the biggest issue affecting the purchase of ligatures. You want to make sure it’s the right size.

Sound

Anything that comes in direct contact with your instrument affects its tone. And, as you’ve likely seen from the reviews above, people liked certain ligatures and not others, based on how they affected their tenor sax’s overall tone.

We’ve tried to point out which ligatures are better suited to contemporary music or jazz, and which are more optimized for classical. That said, some additional research may be required if you don’t know what you’re looking for. Don’t be too shy about doing some additional research.

Saxophonists tend to notice when their instrument sounds a little different, and likely, you will too. Depending on the ligature, it will either boost your sax’s tone, change it, or make it worse. So, take some time to do your research and find what you need.

Budget

Tenor saxophone ligatures tend to vary in price from about $20 to $80. So, they aren’t terribly expensive, and we can’t imagine you’ll go broke buying one (though we always like to caution you against going into debt to purchase gear).

But we also understand that costs do add up, even if it’s just for accessories. So, if your budget is tight, or it’s a bit of a factor, make this a part of your buying decision process. It can make it a lot easier to whittle down your options.

What Are The Best Tenor Saxophone Ligature Brands?

There are several manufacturers and brands that work on saxophone and clarinet accessories specifically, and there are also those that focus a little more generally on accessories.

Here, we’ll look at several of the best tenor saxophone ligature brands.

Francois Louis

Francois Louis makes mouthpieces, ligatures, reeds, and accessories for saxophonists.

Francois Louis himself is a musical instrument maker, and in 1980, he built his first mouthpiece. So, it’s fair to say they have a lot of experience in this field.

Vandoren

Vandoren (or Vandoren Paris) is a manufacturer of mouthpieces, reeds, and accessories for saxophones and clarinets. The company was founded in 1905, and today they serve more than 100 countries with their products.

Vandoren is a name that should become familiar to you as a saxophonist if you aren’t familiar with it already.

Rovner

As with the manufacturers mentioned so far, Rovner is also known for their ligatures, clarinet barrels, mouthpieces, accessories, and more.

The company was founded by Phil Rovner, who’s known to have made a significant contribution to the woodwind community.

D’Addario

The name D’Addario should be familiar to most guitarists. It may not be as well known to saxophonists. Either way, they do make some great accessories (in addition to guitar strings).

D’Addario was founded in 1974, in Salle, Italy and is headquartered in the US.

Top Tenor Saxophone Ligatures, Final Thoughts

Now that you’ve made your way through this guide, you should be better equipped to find the perfect tenor saxophone ligature.

A ligature does play a critical role in the performance of your instrument, so it is worth finding one that feels right to you.

As always, we want to wish you happy shopping!

P.S. Remember though, none of what you’ve learned will matter if you don’t know how to get your music out there and earn from it. Want to learn how to do that? Then get our free ‘5 Steps To Profitable Youtube Music Career’ ebook emailed directly to you!

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