10 Best Intermediate Clarinets Reviews 2017 – Standard Clarinet List

Best Intermediate Clarinet & Best Intermediate Clarinet Brands

Best Intermediate Clarinet & Best Intermediate Clarinet Brands

Looking for the best intermediate clarinet to perform at a higher level is not always going to be easy. While there are some excellent brands in the market, finding the one that fits your playing level and style is another daunting task for the intermediate player. But that is why we are here, to aid in selecting the best intermediate clarinet that will fit you.

What are the Best Intermediate Clarinets to Buy?

2) Jean Paul USA CL-300 Clarinet

  • Highly Rated
  • Made of Ebonite
  • Reputable
  • Good Sound

1) Mendini Sky Blue ABS B-Flat Clarinet

  • Beautiful Design
  • Lightweight
  • ABS Resin
  • Highly Graded

3) The Yamaha YCL-255 Bb Clarinet 

Yamaha YCL-255 Standard Bb Clarinet Bb Clarinet
  • Reputable Brand
  • Superior Quality
  • Comfortable playing

What makes a good intermediate clarinet?

For an intermediate clarinet to be deemed ‘impressive’, it has to be highly responsive, with clear sound, warm tone and made with high-quality material construction. The fact remains that the biggest change from a beginner to intermediate playing level is the quality and reliability of the wood and the keys of the instrument.

Body construction

Once you have graduated from a beginner’s level, you will become exposed to intermediate clarinets that are made out of wood and featuring keys designed from stronger metals. An intermediate clarinet may turn out to be the last clarinet you are going to buy, so it is extremely important that you get the right quality that will serve your needs throughout your school and college days.

Key aspects of an intermediate clarinet

The tenor cork

A clarinet always comes in sections. Each section of the clarinet has cork strip that allows you to have a perfect fit when assembling the product.

The Bore

The part of the clarinet responsible for the sound you hear is ‘the bore.’ The bore of any clarinet runs from the mouthpiece to the bell, and it’s usually available as a cylinder shape design—meaning the same diameter is maintained throughout. However, some clarinets contain poly-cylindrical bore.

The thump rest

The thump rest is the feature that allows the player to spread the weight of the instrument while playing. It is located just at the back of the clarinet lower joint.

10 Best Intermediate Clarinet Reviews and the Best Intermediate Clarinet Brands

1) Mendini MCT-SB Plus PB Sky Blue ABS B-Flat Clarinet

Mendini by Cecilio is another trusted and reliable musical brand. The company has been in the business of manufacturing both beginners’, intermediate and professional quality musical instruments.

Due to their high standing in maintaining quality, we expect this clarinet to boast the same excellent features and functionality. So, are we disappointed or happy? Let’s find out by exploring what make or mar this clarinet.

It is designed to represent the B Flat Key. The clarinet comes with high-quality body construction, together with adjustable thump rest and durable plated inline trill keys. Before these clarinets are sold, they are thoroughly reviewed, tested, and certified at the company testing facility in California to ensure they comply with the highest quality.

This comes with lots of excellent accessories such as a compact, sturdy and foldable clarinet stand, a pocketbook that provides daily practice guide and constant study reference for the intermediate player. The pocketbook contains how the player can rightly place his or her fingers, how to cover and get the best range from the B-flat clarinet.

Other reliable accessories that come with this design include a great lightweight case for storage and transport, a mouthpiece, ligature, cork grease and cap, and a pair of gloves.

2) Jean Paul USA CL-300 Student Clarinet

We decided to review this clarinet and find out why it is so highly rated and regarded as being among the best in the intermediate level. So we went on exploring the construction and found that the body is constructed with an ebonite design, and when we tested the sound on this piece, it was surprisingly clear, solid and better than its plastic counterpart. Regarding weight and handling, this Jean Paul CL-300 is not in any way as breakable as most other plastic models tend to be.

Now, we’re moving on to other areas of this clarinet to see what else it offers. Of course, the Jean Paul CL-300 is a B-Flat clarinet and is ideal for most marching band or group of young entertainers. But one problem we found in this product is that the keys sometimes easily bend and make it difficult for the intermediate player to handle. But on careful consideration, we found that this problem is limited to some purchases with defects, and not the entire line of the CL-300.

Still on the keys, the 17 Boehm keys system featured by the clarinet placed it far above some of it peers in the same category. The silver nickel plated keys are easy to use. It has a strong bore and wide range of tone, which is good for the intermediate player to reach his/her full potentials.

As usual with most other models of clarinet, this one also features a carrying case together with its own mouthpiece, ligature, a set of Rico reeds and cap.

3) The Yamaha YCL-255 Standard Bb Clarinet Bb Clarinet

Yamaha YCL-255 Standard Bb Clarinet Bb Clarinet

This is another superior quality intermediate clarinet from Yamaha. This model is a continuation of the unique YCL series which has even made the company more famous. The YCL-255 design follows the footsteps of the professional models of the instrument. It featured a 65mm barrel for achieving a focused and well-balanced tone. The YCL-255 features a plastic body design which generates a warm and pulsating tone.

The sound that emanates from this plastic clarinet is so rich that you would mistake it for a wooden instrument. The matte ABS resin of the YCL-255 clarinet body also gives it resemblance similar to a wooden clarinet. The keys are nickel-silver plated, meaning you don’t have a cause to worry about corrosion. However, some people are allergic to nickel.

The YCL-255 Clarinet also features a revolutionary adjustment thump design, including the neck strap ring that enables players to develop and improve their intermediate level playing. The solid ABS resin bell construction makes the clarinet lightweight enough to be easily handled by the student player.

The instrument also comes with a valentine pad that prevents it from easily getting damaged in extreme temperature conditions. It features a strap ring that makes holding the instrument more easy and comfortable.

The package comes with everything that you need – be it corks grease, reeds, cleaning cloths, etc. The YCL is a good clarinet.

4) Yamaha YCL-450NM Duet + International Clarinet

Yamaha is a maker of top instrument choices for the majority of today’s musicians, including students and teachers. The Yamaha YCL-450NM International Clarinet is an exceptional line of the intermediate instrument designed to bring out the best in the student player.

The clarinet features silver plated keys that prevent corrosion. The body construction carries a Granadilla wooden design, a feature that provides superior ton and depth. For the player or student who is looking to climb up the professional ladder, this is the right and appropriate clarinet to acquire. The package consists of all the required accessories and features that will get you started on your way to becoming a professional.

The Yamaha YCL-450NM Duet + International Clarinet come with a mouthpiece, which you really don’t need to change as it delivers decent tone and clarity. It is equipped with a barrel, a case for adequate storage and transportation. The tone is smooth and well balanced. The undercut of the instrument is tapered, which enable it to give a high level of intonation with the breathtaking response.

The double skin pads and the blue steel springs make this instrument to be extremely comfortable and reliable. The inclusion of the ABS plastic resin to the inner bore of the upper joint, coupled with the delicate nature of the Granadilla wooden construction, makes the Yamaha YCL-450NM Duet + International Clarinet one great piece to have.

5) Mendini MCT-30 Intermediate Solid Rosewood B-Flat Clarinet

Another classic Mendini design, it is a remarkable one that sets it aside from others in the MCT series. It features a durable rosewood body construction that offers deep volume and more tone clarity. It features silver-plated keys plus in-line trill keys with a reliable adjustable thump rest setting. The craftsmanship employed in this design works perfectly and the tones it produces are fascinating, to say the least.

The clarinet is equipped with a mouthpiece, 10 reeds, a hard case for storage and protection from damages. This clarinet is the perfect type for both beginners and intermediate players. All intermediate level players are provided with a good hand placement for comfortable play.

The wooden construction also causes the clarinet to expand and contracts while under intense temperature changes. This makes it more prone to maintenance compared to plastic models.

The Mendini MCT-30 Intermediate Clarinet is very intuitive and easy to assemble. The player’s ease of use guarantees much better by the foldable stand that comes with the product. It can easily be stored and transported about to any location of choice. This clarinet offers a good sound and volume experience to the intermediate player.

6) Hisonic Signature Series 2610 Bb Orchestra Clarinet with Case

Hisonic is a popular brand in the musical instrument market, and we chose this particular model from because the Signature series incorporate some unique features that define the best of intermediate instruments.

Featuring an ebonite design, the Hisonic Signature Series 2610 Bb Orchestra Clarinet is an elegant piece with great finishing touches. The instrument has an excellent tone quality, very appealing and easy to play. Although the manufacturer designed this clarinet to be an ‘intermediate level clarinet,’ we noticed that beginners also make use of it because it contains some notable features and touches common with beginners’ level clarinet.

The tone that emanates from the Hisonic Signature Clarinet is clear, making it suitable for use under different performance. It comes with Prestini keypads that were made in the USA. Boasting nickel-silver keys, the Hisonic Signature Clarinet also include grease cup and clarinet swab. Also, a protective plush line case effectively secures and protects the instrument.

Overall, the instrument is good quality and the plush line case helps guard against wear and tear during extreme weather conditions. The instrument weighs just 4.1 pounds, making it a lightweight option to consider.

7) Buffet Crampon E11 Bb Intermediate Wood Clarinet

Buffet Crampon E11 Bb Intermediate Wood Clarinet

So this is woody? Majority of musicians knows what Buffet stands for, but for those who really don’t know much about the Buffet line of musical instruments, theirs is one great embodiment of quality and reliability.

The Buffet Cramping E11 is a German Bb Intermediate Wood Clarinet. It is designed to enhance the performance of the serious-minded student at the intermediate level. It features a lightweight body construction that makes it easier for the player to handle and play with remarkable flexibility. The overall body construction is woody, meaning more clarity of pitch and deep tone.

We checked out the pitch and found that it is working alright. It works in the reasonable range and increases gradually as the player proceed further. The Buffet Crampon E11 Bb Intermediate Wood Clarinet package consists of a brown case with a sealed original buffet mouthpiece.

Other accessories included are a swab, cork grease, reed, and a pencil. It is likely that you will have to replace the mouthpiece after purchase, but you are going to keep the other items as new additions.

The Buffet Crampon E11 case has a strong plastic smell, but since it isn’t what you are going to be playing, that shouldn’t be an issue. Overall, the clarinet would be a good found for any student.

8) Rossetti Intermediate Soprano Bb Clarinet Black

The Rossetti Intermediate Bb Clarinet is another excellent musical piece for the serious and ever-willing to improve student player. This clarinet features ebonite body constructions that make the instrument very appealing and beautiful. Lined across the brushed-finish ebony body, are solid and power-forged silver-nickel plated keys, which underline this clarinet sound credibility.

Reflecting the design of the silver plated keys is the bell ring, which is also silver nickel plated in design. Although silver nickel design adds flare and elegance to the overall play and appearance, some people might be allergic to nickel. So, be sure to check out if this will be suitable for you before attempting to buy.

Notwithstanding, the Rossetti Intermediate Soprano Bb Clarinet is an elegant black, color instrument that works wonderfully. The tone is nice and the construction is well assembled. This clarinet features the cheapest ligature on the market, which you easily bend within a week. It is ideal that you replace the ligature and go for a more quality one.

The keys on this clarinet are sturdy and do not easily give in to bending. The cork is very stiff, though, nice and you will need to apply some cork grease to soften it a bit. The package includes cork grease, mouthpiece swab, reed holder and a couple of reeds.

9) Cecilio 3Series CT-380 Solid Rosewood Bb Intermediate B-Flat Clarinet

Cecilio is a highly reliable manufacturer of musical instruments in the world. This model feature lots of unique quality touches and excellent finish. The clarinet features a Rosewood design that offers a robust and reliable volume, together with a smoother and prolonged output. The rich sound and full volume this clarinet produces are far better than what any plastic clarinet can produce.

Regarding weight and diameter, the Cecilio 3Series CT-380 Solid Rosewood Bb Intermediate B-Flat Clarinet is slightly heavier and larger body construction. The wood diameter improves the physical feel and experience over other plastic alternatives. The level of intonation and control this clarinet offers makes it a good package to consider when shopping for an intermediate instrument.

The package features pro deluxe, solid and durable plush line covered white case that has backpack straps, together with a zipper pocket. It also includes a mouthpiece, a ligature, and a cap.

You will have the opportunity of having a 10-reed pack, each measuring 2.5 inches in size, cork grease for lubricating the mouthpiece/ligature to ensure it is flexible. The cleaning fabric and playing gloves mean you have a complete package and necessary tools to keep this clarinet in good shape.

10) Legacy CL750 Intermediate Clarinet with Deluxe Carrying Case

It is every musician’s dream to leave a successful and lasting legacy trailing his/her career. And for those playing at the intermediate level, they couldn’t have waited for a much better opportunity. So let’s find out what this clarinet is all about.

The legacy CL750 stands as a reliable and excellent intermediate clarinet in the market. We saw that the instrument has some fine finish and solid touches that truly put it ahead of the beginner’s entry-level instruments. The quality and craftsmanship are quite elegant. It is a plastic clarinet but the woodgrain brush finish is just excellent, and it helps to cut down on fingerprints.

The Legacy CL750 features sterling silver nickel-plated keys and you can tell it is a nicer and better finish compared to the usual plating used in other cheaper models. The entire keys and springs work flawlessly. The pads are perfectly installed and are working correctly. There are no obvious flaws to the overall finish.

The sound that comes from this instrument is so mellow and is a welcome addition to any musical library. We discovered it sounds much nicer than a host of expensive clarinets. The heft and quality appearance make a lot of teachers to like and recommend this Legacy CL750 a clarinet of choice.

Choosing the Best Intermediate Clarinet from the Best Intermediate Clarinet Brands

It is strictly impossible to exhaust the list of high quality and reliable clarinets. We have so many clarinet brands in the market, but we have only reviewed a few above to serve as a guide and best of reference when choosing the best clarinets in the market.

2) Jean Paul USA CL-300 Clarinet

  • Highly Rated
  • Made of Ebonite
  • Reputable
  • Good Sound

1) Mendini Sky Blue ABS B-Flat Clarinet

  • Beautiful Design
  • Lightweight
  • ABS Resin
  • Highly Graded

3) The Yamaha YCL-255 Bb Clarinet 

Yamaha YCL-255 Standard Bb Clarinet Bb Clarinet
  • Reputable Brand
  • Superior Quality
  • Comfortable playing

It is highly important that you understand what constitute high-quality clarinets in line with the amount of your budget. Also, don’t forget that price is not always the best determinant when it comes to quality and playability. As evident in our review, some low priced clarinet matches or even outperform some high-priced clarinets. So, know what you want and get the best for your level.

Most recommended brands

All the brands listed above in this reviews are worth their places because each possess a unique characteristic that set it apart from the rest. However, if you wish to trim down on the list or that you would prefer our own specific recommendation, you can go for the following brands:

Mendini

Mendini or Mendini by Cecilio is one of few brands that has been giving Yamaha a run for their money. We love their intermediate clarinets because:

  • They incorporate elegant design
  • Lightweight and ease of handling
  • ABS resin, and
  • Highly graded.

Jean Paul USA

The Jean Paul excels in performance and quality service delivery. Consider the CL-300 for instance and you will know Jean Paul is one brand that doesn’t joke with quality. We recommend this especially for the following reasons:

  • Highly rated
  • Unbeatable ebonite design
  • Rich and excellent sound
  • Durable brand.

Yamaha

Every piece of instruments this guys touch remind us of King Midas—the man with the golden touch. Yamaha isn’t just a famous brand, but a force to beat as far as other brands are concerned. The intermediate clarinets put forward by Yamaha showcases:

  • Beautiful sounds
  • Top quality design
  • Easy to play, and

And that is all with our reviews and special recommendations of the best intermediate clarinets in this year.