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blogwardSep 02, 2009 12:47 PM GMT
Over-designed zipped stiff case with elastic belt strap and harp key tab; new top cover (but still no support strut), chamfered and sealed comb, don't quite overblow OOTB but they sound significantly louder and brighter than your average MB. What Marine Bands should have been like all along, really. The Hohner logo apears to be burned into the comb and looks really crappy when you see the rest of the branding on the whole thing.
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Hohners have always been gapped higher than what OB's want. The support strut can also be a curse because it can also kill some of the air and prevent it from playing as loud as possible, and it can darken the sound, which may or may not be to your liking. The zipped case is also similar to what Bends uses for the Juke model.
I definitely prefer them to the standard MBs - the Crossovers have a definite bluegrass/country sound - but I still prefer GMs anyway:) It does look as though more R&D went into the case, but I wonder if the reed side tolerance has been improved (haven't looked), because of the bright sound. Very good for acoustic playing.
If the sound is both brighter as well as louder, it's obvious that the reed slot tolerances had been tightened because when the harp goes thru the embossing process, that's exactly what happens, so that should also mean the gap setting should also be lower because much less breath force is necessary to play it, but as I've said many times, in the hands of a poorly skilled player who uses far too much breath force, it'll make it more prone to blowout and thosse very same players will very predictably blame the instrument and not the real cause, which is their playing technique.
I know that they're using a completely different comprimise tuning than what's now used on the hand mades (MB/MBD/SP20's) and the MS harps, but at present, I don't know what it is, except that no note goes below 6 cents flat anywhere on the instrument, so it's much closer to ET.
Just waiting for the Harrisons now. Got the TShirt..!