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What's a good/cheap Harmonica ??


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It's hard to find a diatonic harmonica for over $100. They're generally in the $20-$30 range. I like the Lee Oskars, which are on the upper end but great for blues playing. The Hohner Marine Band is the classic workhorse harp, and the Hohner Special 20 is well regarded, because it has a plastic comb. The guys over in Acoustic Guitars are pretty well informed if you don't want to take my word.

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For years I've used Lee Oscar, Hohner Marine Band and Hohner Blues Harp.

All of these should be under 30.

 

I've heard great things about the Hohner XB-40, but it's too expensive for me.

 

Although you can play a single harmonica in different keys (positions), you'll eventually want harmonicas in different keys, so the cost adds up. Lee Oskar made it cheaper to replace the reeds instead of replacing the whole harmonica. Hohner has that system now as well.

 

http://www.angelfire.com/tx/myquill/Positions.html

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just go with hohner. you could try other harps to see if they suit you. you should ask for a diatonic harp when you are browsing at the music shop. I would go with any hohner marine band. I am pretty sure Dylan was a fan of marine bands.

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Try to avoid those cheap, plastic, Chinese-made things. Pretty awful tone.

 

Can't really go wrong with Hohner. If you find technique challenging, then you could always buy a Melodica. OK, no bends available, but a few harmonica techniques work really well with Melodicas (throat vibrato mainly) and they sound very similar to chromatics in tone. Pretty easy to learn/play, especially if you have keyboard skills, and they sound cool run through an amp with a bit of dirt.

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just out of curiousity, can anyone link me to a harmonica OVER 100 dollars?

 

 

I'm not sure I've ever run into a diatonic harp over a hundred -- but in an era when some people will pay hundreds or even thousands of dollars for a few feet of "magic" audio cable, I don't think there's much doubt that someone, somewhere is selling some sort of designer/custom/bogus repackaging for over $100.*

 

 

And I would be very surprised if the kind of chromatics played by your top guys don't cost well over a hun.

 

 

* There's a guitar store not far from here where they take utter garbage novelty guitars [presumably made as decorations for the third world, WTF knows?] put a half pound of Simonize on them and sell them for "boutique" prices to people who don't know any better. The shop owner claims to be a well-known luthier but I've enver seen anything but crap on his walls.

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hehehe. i looked at the pure harp. 98 beans. fuuuuuuuuuucccccckkkk YOU! lol. i'd NEVER, bro. i just avowed to play

 

If a harmonica can be described as luxurious, the Suzuki Chromatix Series surely qualify.

lol. well, i'll just take your word for it. i'm going to go shopping for a 65 dollar kazoo. :) (if you click on that quote, up comes a page with a bunch of different brands on it...each have harmonicas over 100 dollars. )

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That's what I liked about Lee Oskar. Instead of replacing the whole harmonica you could replace the reeds. Hohner has that system now as well.

 

I would not mind paying for a $100 harmonica as long as it lasted at least 4 times as long as the typical Marine Band or Blues Harp.

 

Back when I was gigging twice a week, I took with me at least 15 harmonicas. In the keys of A and D I always had at least 2 of each, in case they died on me.

 

Which reminds me of taking care of them and breaking them in gently.

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Some people get a new harmonica and draw/blow very hard on them. This damages the reeds and can get them out of tune or break them.

Sometimes it's possible to get them back in tune using a toothpick and being careful not to brake the reed.

 

Here are some tips:

http://www.harmonica.com/Harmonica_Care_and_Maintenance.html

 

http://www.hohnerusa.com/index.php?1615

 

http://www.jt30.com/jt30page/pup/pup5.html

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HOLY {censored}!!! I FOUND A WINNER!!!!!!!! LOL.
it was probably made as the ultimate asshole test. someone in hohner company said, "let's see how feverishly stupid people can be."
:lol::lol::lol:

 

That's outrageous, but it's not unusual to see those going for a couple bills. The OP is asking for a diatonic harmonica, the standard 10-hole, one-key blues harp. You've got a chromatic harmonica there, which is a full-on instrument capable of performing classical or jazz music, with moving parts and everything. It's the difference between a grand piano and a spinet.

 

There's also bass harmonicas, chord harmonicas, and other specialty units that can run WAAAY over $30, but it'd be hard to find a blues harp for more than that.

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