Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

I’ll admit to ignorance on the subject, but if anyone can point me in some good directions, I’d appreciate it.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

generation whistles are great and easy to modify to sound better (e.g. soaking the head off, covering/opening up holes)

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Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Everything around $10.00(US) sounds/plays pretty much the same. They are all fine to play. I don’t care for the Clark sweet tone but that’s just me.The Clark with the wood block has the best tone but is very quiet. Susato makes a nice whistle for about40.00. They are loud and the tone is alright. Feadog, Generation, Dixon, Oak are all good cheap whistles. Chiff and fipple has a nice whistle guide on their website.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Here’s a novice whistler’s opinion: I like my Clark SweeTone pretty well, it’s in tune, nice medium-loud volume, but the small holes can be a problem for half-holing.

I have one of those 40-dollar Susatos, but the upper notes are just too piercing for my delicate ears, so I just don’t play certain tunes on it. And the tone is, well, controversial. Can’t beat it for noisy situations, though.

I like my Generation best, but it’s not in tune, and I’m afraid to monkey with the head. Besides, it’s not nearly loud enough for noisy situations.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

My personal favorite whistle is a Walton’s D (there are two main kinds, mine being the narrower-bore kind). I had to mess with the hole sizes to get it well in tune, though that seems to be required of most cheap whistles). The best way to find a cheap whistle that suits you is to buy several popular kinds and try tweaking all of them until you really like one. You’ll still end up spending a lot less money than everyone else has to on their instruments. :-D

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

I would suggest the Feadog the most, and then the Generations or Susatos. The Susatos become very piercing in the upper octave though, so the Feadog would probably be your best bet… A Feadog with a generation fipple works well, too, as I’ve found when I lost the fipple for my first one…

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

I’ve been really pleased with my Jerry Freeman Blackbird — it’s a tweaked whistle which sounds really nice, around $36.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Count me as another SweetTone player. I love the sound of the Feadog, but it’s just too quiet for the session, and the SweetTone is at least loud enough that I can hear it. I haven’t asked anyone else, but when I lead a tune on the whistle, people seem able to quiet down to where I am, so I guess it’s not too bad. The Susato is certainly loud, but I can do without the sound.
I have somewhere in my gear an aluminum whistle that I absolutely hated, I think it was called the "Little Black Whistle". It was a nightmare - thin, reedy sound, pitch problems, and no volume at all. I guess the last starts to sound like an advantage considering the first two. In any case, stay away from that one would be my advice.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Another fan of Jerry Freeman’s Blackbird. Very even through the octaves. Definitely good for emulating the birdies.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

For 25 euro you get the nicest by a mile of the ‘improved’ whistles, a Cillian O Briain.

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Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

First, as so often, we begin with a vague relative concept.
"Low-priced"? What does that mean? How low? How high?

So, rant done —- if you have the loot, get a Dixon, IMHO.
Nice tone, do get the tunables, the poly-synthe-plasto-delrin-or-whatever versions are lovely for the price.
The metal ones have a bit brighter tone for the less shy amongst you. (I shall play quietly back here, well away from the mike.)

Cheap whistles are seldom good,
good whistles are seldom cheap.

Good luck.

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Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Thanks to all for the info. I found a link on this site to The Whistle Shop and wound up ordering 3 D whistles to play around with and see if I have some apptitude for the instrument. I’m a guitar player and I’ve tried blowing into either end of a guitar but I couldn’t get it to sound like a whistle.

I can’t remember all three whistles I ordered last night. I know I got tweaked Clarke Sweetone and a Generation Folk Whistle, but I can’t remember the third so that’ll be a surprise when it gets here. It may have been an original Clarke, but it was late when I ordered and it’s all gone a little fuzzy. There were many choices.

I also am getting a bouzouki built by Paddy Burgin in NZ. Hopefully the whistles will keep me entertained until the zouk arrives in August.

Thanks again!
Jim

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

In my opinion. Susato is the way to go for low priced whistles. However, for a novice they may prove a little hard to blow. So i would suggest trying a narrow-bore susato

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

I looked at the Susatos, but I didn’t want to lay out the money for one unless I knew this was something I’d stick with for a while. They were 3 or 4 times the price of the ones I ordered and I wanted to get some variety of tones.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Well susato is certainly not for everyone. I’ve played them for years. I find the can get above a session very well and you can really lean into them. They wouldn’t have a great tone. Although i have heard some exceptions. Maybe check out some Jerry Freeman tweaked whistles. These are waltons, feadogs and generations which Jerry has tweaked to sound better. They’re pretty cheap and ideal to learn on.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Just 5 words:
Tony Dixon Trad = cheap perfection
And forget anything else.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

The tweaked Sweetone I ordered is a Jerry Freeman mod according to TheWhistleShop.com

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

i have a walton’s D body with a generation tweaked head i put together myself. although it’s out of tune (compared to say, a burke), it’s a great bang for the buck!

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Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Freeman calls his Walton?Generation hybrids ‘mellow dog’ whistles. I have one and now that you mentuion it daiv, it is out of tune,

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

I second the Tony Dixon trad recommendation. Of all my whistles (which range in price from about US$8 to US$80), it’s my favorite by far. It’s an absolute, under-priced gem.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

I took a look at the Dixon website… nice looking whistles. If I get any good at this, I might have to get one of those.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Plain old Clarke with a wooden fipple works for me, and still costs less than ten bucks, I believe.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

My whistles arrived today and I’m having fun. I was moving right along in the Clarke tin whistle book until I got to Oranges and Lemons and that’s when my fingers were letting me know it’s not going to be very easy from here out… but I’m having fun with it.

So I wound up getting a tweaked Clarke Sweetone, a Generation Folk whistle, and a Walton Little Black Whistle …all in D so I could compare tone and ease of play. By far, the tweaked Clarke is the easiest to play. I did some reading up and I’m going to try to tweak the other two and see if I can’t improve them a bit.

Re: Are there any good low-priced tin whistles?

Jerry Freeman’s Mellow Dog is very popular and around $36,50. Erle Bartlet’s Black Diamond is very popular, and same price. Less well known is Ian Turnbull’s Impempe from South Africa, same price and very professional whistle. I have 2 Impempes myself. With Tony Dixon you always have a fine whistle for a low price. Susato is different; you either love it or hate it. It’s loud and flute-like, but very stable and in tune, and….inexpensive.

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