14 Best Clarinet Reed Reviews 2021 (For Beginners and Advanced Players)

Best Clarinet Reeds, Best Clarinet for Beginners and Advanced Players, Best Clarinet Reed Brands

Best Clarinet Reeds, Best Clarinet for Beginners and Advanced Players, Best Clarinet Reed Brands

The clarinet is an amazing instrument, but you need to know that in order to produce impressive sounds, it needs a small and simple piece called reed. Made out of a thin piece of cane, the reed has an incredible role when it comes to the performance of a clarinet, as it is responsible for the sounds the instrument produces. So, if you started playing this instrument or you are looking for very soon, then you need to know how to choose the best clarinet reeds.

Related: Good Clarinet, Beginners, Intermediate & Professional Clarinet, Clarinet Case

What are the Best Clarinet Reeds to Buy?

2) Rico by D’Addario Bb Clarinet Reeds

Rico by DAddario Bb Clarinet Reeds
  • Various Strengths Available
  • Reputable
  • Affordable
  • Thin Vamp Cut
  • Great Quality

1) Vandoren CR103 Bb Clarinet  Reeds 

  • Various Strengths Available
  • High Quality
  • Traditional Reeds
  • Flexible

3) Mitchell Lurie Bb Clarinet Reeds

  • Various Strengths Available
  • Thinner Tip
  • Easy Response
  • High Accuracy
  • Great Performance

To start with, you need to know that reeds come in various softness and hardness levels. While some reed brands use the mentions “soft”, “medium”, or “hard” on the package of their reeds, others prefer using a scale from 1 to 5. Thus, 1 represents the softest version and 5 is the hardest type of reed you can find.

What’s the difference between them?

Reeds that are softer trigger a sound that is brighter and lighter, also making the playing of a clarinet easier. So, if you are a beginner, it would be recommended to look for clarinet reeds in this range. For example, a reed with a softness of 2 or 2 ½ can be the ideal choice.

Just do have in mind that, in spite of the numbers displayed on their package, a 2 reed can be slightly different from one brand to another. A hard reed, on the other hand, will provide sounds that are fuller, heavier, and thicker.

When playing the clarinet with a hard reed, it is harder to adjust the pitch, although altissimo notes are easier to reach. Thus, this kind of reeds is more suitable for clarinet players that accumulated a degree of experience.

If you are looking for a Clarinet Reeds Storage Case, check the below:

D’Addario RVCASE04 Multi-Instrument Reed Storage Case with Humidity Control Pack for all Clarinets

Suitable for clarinets and saxophones alike, this is a case for reeds provided by D’Addario. With its help, you will be able to store your reeds in ideal conditions, away from excess humidity. This is highly useful especially in the case of natural, cane reeds, which are more sensitive when it comes to humidity.

The case can store up to 8 reeds of all sizes, made to suit clarinets and saxophones. The humidity maintained inside the case will be of 72%, which is ideal to keep the reeds in a pristine shape.

You should also know a few things about the cuts of a reed. There is the regular cut or French cut to choose from. While the differences between them may not be noticeable at first, the type of cut makes a reed react faster. So, once you get used to the sounds of your clarinet, you will be able to make a difference between these two.

14 Best Clarinet Reed Reviews and the Best Clarinet Reed Brands

1) Vandoren CR103 Bb Clarinet Traditional Reeds Strength 3; Box of 10

* Various Strengths Available

When learning to play the clarinet, the best would be to get used to its traditional sounds, before you experiment with anything else. So, these traditional reeds provided by Vandoren is just what you need to get used to this instrument in the right manner.

The reeds are available in a variety of strengths, but since you are a beginner, it is advisable not to exceed the strength of 3, as it will be a bit more difficult to play your clarinet. Besides this, you will be satisfied with the kind of sound the Vandoren reeds will provide. Clear and with a rich body, they will make your clarinet sound impressive.

2) Rico by D’Addario Bb Clarinet Reeds, Strength 2.5, 10-pack

* Various Strengths Available

These are 2.5 reeds from D’Addario as well, but, in comparison with the previous model, these ones feature a vamp cut, which makes playing the clarinet slightly easier. Thus, they are more appropriate for clarinet players that are still trying to decipher the secrets of playing this beautiful instrument.

Available in packs of 10 or 3 reeds, it is up to you if you want to try them out. Also, the accessible price of these reeds makes them suitable for clarinet teachers, who want to make sure that they can offer the right kind of reeds to their students that are just starting out.

3) Mitchell Lurie Bb Clarinet Reeds, Strength 3.0, 10-pack

* Various Strengths Available

In case you are looking for a “medium” reed for your clarinet, then you need to check this one. With a strength of 3.0, it is neither soft not hard, allowing you to enjoy a balanced clarinet performance. The cut is unfiled, which means that they are the traditional type.

The measurement and design of these reeds was assisted by a laser, so you can be sure that their precision is as it is supposed to be. No matter what reed you will choose from the pack, you will get the same performance from your instrument.

4) Royal by D’Addario Bb Clarinet Reeds, Strength 2.5, 10-pack

* Various Strengths Available

Another type of clarinet reeds that are ideal for beginners, due to their soft nature. In this case, D’Addario provides a set of 10 reeds, with a filed cut, which will be suitable regardless if you are playing classical music or jazz.

You can also purchase a set of only 3 reeds, if you want to just try them out before deciding whether they suit your preferences. But, considering that they are soft reeds, do expect for a brighter clarinet sound when using them. Apart from this, they are great clarinet reeds to have around, with a great ratio between price and quality.

5) Vandoren CR1935+ Bb Clarinet V.12 Reeds Strength 3.5+; Box of 10

* Various Strengths Available

Vandoren is probably one of the most appreciated brands when it comes to clarinet reeds. They are known for the quality of their products, which explains the higher price tag. So, if you can spend those extra bucks, you will get great cane reeds in return.

Packed in a sealed manner, the reeds will be remained fresh and in a pristine shape until they reach you. With a thickness that is above average, these reeds will give you the chance to produce deeper and richer sounds with your clarinet. The tip that is ticker and palette that is longer than in traditional reeds, they will vibrate better and produce more spectacular sounds.

6) Vandoren CR5035 Bb Clarinet 56 Rue Lepic Reeds Strength 3.5; Box of 10

* Various Strengths Available

This particular type of clarinet reeds made by Vandoren is created to resemble German clarinet reeds, which mean that they are thicker. They respond quickly and will make your clarinet produce pure and loud sounds, with an incredible stability.

The graduations in strength are barely noticeable, which means that you will enjoy reeds that are more consistent than most available on the market. So, no wonder Vandoren is such a well-regarded brand on which many musicians rely. If you already got the hang of playing the clarinet, then these reeds will not let you down.

7) Cecilio Clarinet Reeds, Strength 2.5, Two Boxes of 10 (Total of 20 Reeds)

If you want to make sure that you have sufficient cane clarinet reeds for a while, these ones offered by Cecilio come in two packages, of 10 reeds each. This means that by paying a small amount of money, you will get cane reeds to enjoy.

They have a strength of 2.5, which makes them suitable for beginners. Considering that beginners will spend a good amount of time rehearsing, having a larger number of reeds in handy is a good thing. You never know when the reed you use stops doing its job, especially after so many rehearsal sessions.

8) Vandoren CR8035 Bb Clarinet V21 Reeds Strength 3.5; Box of 10

* Various Strengths Available

Vandoren went even further when it came to the creation of clarinet reeds that suit all preferences and requirements. Thus, the company decided to combine the conical shape of a reed, specific to 56 rue Lepic reeds, with the classic V.12 profile.

The result comes in the form of this particular type of reeds. When using this kind of reeds, you will notice that your clarinet will produce sounds that are warmer, but also deeper, so the performance of your instrument will truly be impressive. The reed responds immediately, so you will have no trouble in handling larger interval leaps while performing.

9) D’Addario Reserve Classic Bb Clarinet Reeds, Strength 3.5, 10-pack

* Various Strengths Available

Are you appreciating a richer sound when playing your clarinet? Then these reeds made by D’Addario will help you enjoy this particular kind of sounds, due to their thicker blank reed.

But, due the strength of these reeds, no matter how great it may sound, it’s better for intermediate and advanced clarinet players, as the instrument may be harder to handle with this kind of reeds.

The clarinet reeds are made in the USA, using the cane that grows in the own foreign cane plantations of D’Addario. So, if you choose this product, you can be sure of its quality.

10) 10 Bb Clarinet Reeds (Tanbi Music CLR101): 10 Soft Reeds Strength 1.5-2 and Clarinet Cork Grease

If you are a beginner when it comes to playing the clarinet, then this is the type of reeds you need to take into consideration. They are very soft reeds, of only 1.5 to 2, meaning that it will be easier for you to control the sounds produced by your instrument.

Of course, they are suitable for experienced players as well, as they allow you to create higher and brighter sounds. The set will provide a number of 10 cane reeds and a tube of special cork grease for your clarinet so that you have all the accessories you need for an exceptional performance.

11) Bravo Synthetic Reeds for Bb Clarinet – Strength 3.0 (Box of 5), Model BR-C30

* Various Strengths Available

While reeds were traditionally made out of cane, modern reeds also come in a version that is made out of synthetic material. Of course, this doesn’t make them less suitable for your clarinet’s performance.

These ones made by Bravo are made out of a safe and non-toxic material, so you should not worry about using them. Their tip is resistant to high humidity and cracks, so you’ll be able to use them for a very long time.

Thus, they are more resilient than reeds made out of cane, which is more sensitive to wear and tear. The reeds come individually packed, so you can better store them until you use them.

12) Legere BB3.0 Bb Soprano Clarinet Standard Cut No. 3 Reed

Would like something sturdier and more resilient than cane reeds? This particular reed made out of a special polymer will provide an exceptional performance to your clarinet, while you can stop worrying about humidity and cracks.

You may expect to find a rather rigid plastic reed, but Legere will surprise you with a synthetic reed that is capable of mimicking the properties of a wet cane reed. And all this with the ability to enjoy this reed for months in a row, as the polymer has what it takes to withstand a lot of wear and tear.

13) Glory Reeds Clarinet Reed Size# 2, Box of 10~size 1.5, 2, 2.5, 3

* Various Strengths Available

For those of you that would like to experience clarinet reeds of various strengths, now you have the chance with these reeds provided by Glory Reeds. They come with strengths ranging between 1.5 and 3, making the reeds more than suitable for beginners, allowing them to start sensing the difference of playing with a variety of reeds.

The set is great for experienced players as well, giving them the chance to change the reed of their clarinet according to how they would like to perform. You just need to pick the set that has the desired strength in your case. Just do have in mind that each set has a number of 10 reeds.

14) Kmise A0871 10 Piece Reeds Strength 2.5 Box of Clarinet Parts

Made out of natural cane and having a softness of 2 ½, these reeds are ideal for those of you that are learning how to play the clarinet. More affordable than synthetic reeds, they represent the natural and traditional version, giving you the chance to play the clarinet as it used to for so long already.

The clarinet reeds are also wrapped individually, not just for better transportation but also for proper storage, as cane reeds are more subjected to cracks. So, it is important to store them well. This package contains 10 pieces, so you will have reeds that will last for a while.

Choosing the Best Clarinet Reed from the Best Clarinet Reed Brands

When it comes to choosing the right clarinet reeds, it really depends on your experience, the style of your performance, and the kind of music you play. Cane reeds may be more pleasant to use and they provide that classical clarinet experience, but they are also quite fragile, especially when they are not stored in proper conditions.

Synthetic reeds, on the other hand, are more resistant, which can make them more suitable for extended practice sessions, although they can feel rather funny and they do come with a slightly larger price tag.

Still, as a beginner, stick to using soft reeds at first, until you manage to properly control the sounds and pitch of your clarinet. Once you will manage to gain sufficient experience and handling the clarinet will no longer be an issue, you will be free to experiment with a wider variety of reeds and look for your own playing style.

2) Rico by D’Addario Bb Clarinet Reeds

Rico by DAddario Bb Clarinet Reeds
  • Various Strengths Available
  • Reputable
  • Affordable
  • Thin Vamp Cut
  • Great Quality

1) Vandoren CR103 Bb Clarinet  Reeds 

  • Various Strengths Available
  • High Quality
  • Traditional Reeds
  • Flexible

3) Mitchell Lurie Bb Clarinet Reeds

  • Various Strengths Available
  • Thinner Tip
  • Easy Response
  • High Accuracy
  • Great Performance

Luckily, the market provides a wide range of brands and types, so all you have to do is decide on the budget and type of reed you currently need. While more affordable reeds may be good for practicing, when performing on stage you may want to have high-quality reeds you can rely on each time.