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Bonetti And Morelli Anglo Concertina, Please Advise


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#1 jimbo77

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Posted 14 November 2009 - 10:21 AM

Hi, I'm James from canada... and I can't play hardly an instrument (grin)
Thanks for this forum !

Seriously, I can't figure out stringed instruments at all.

Thankfully HARMONICA I can learn and LOVE Irish and Scottish music.

I saw a performance with a concertina and was in love.... Although they do look complicated to learn, I may be ok with TAB, and this forum, haha.

Anyway, I'm here to ask a question.

I KNOW.... everyone says stay away from Ebay, and a beginner unit is $300-400.... Well, I honestly can't pay it. I've got $100. So, it's learn, or not.

That in mind, I know a $1500 unit will sound better, etc... but can people weigh in on the playability and quality of these two units.

BONETTI 20 Button
MORELLI 30 Button

http://shop.vendio.c...9639/index.html

That's the USA seller, also is on ebay with a BIG Perfect Rating.

Ad says these are Italian Engineered (so yeah, maybe italian specs at a chinese plant, but so are hohner, samick, and every other company, even the made in US ones...) And they are warranted.

So again, I know it's lower-er grade, but will it hold up, anyone actually use one of these -- especially the BONETTI



SECOND QUESTION: I LOVE Irish reels and slow airs, as well as Scottish pipes and slow airs. I was learning it on the harmonica too.
I also love Klezmer music

That in mind....... 30 Button Anglo VS 20 Button Anglo ?

Again, I know enough to know a 30 is same layout as 20 with 10 more accent keys...so you can learn basics and have a more advanced unit in the 30.
But, the 20 would be plainer to see and learn and is a little cheaper

I am content to only buy what I need. I don't need upgrades, or what if down the road, if it will play what I want. You know?

I saw a little 20 Button on Youtube playing Pogues music - Awesome !

But again, I don't know enough to know better.

PLEASE ASAP some thoughts if you can.

THANK YOU !!

Jim

#2 jimbo77

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 10:56 AM

Thanks anyway

#3 asdormire

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 11:04 AM

James,

Oddly enough, this board moves a lot slower on weekends then it does during the week. As to which to buy, I think the consensus around here would be to put a little more cash together and get the Rochelle. Of course, if that isn't possible, get the thirty button you can afford as it will give more options as what music you can play.

Alan

#4 FatBellows

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 08:38 PM

Hi, I'm James from canada... and I can't play hardly an instrument (grin)
Thanks for this forum !

Seriously, I can't figure out stringed instruments at all.
There's nothing to figure out. They're for crazy people....:P

Thankfully HARMONICA I can learn and LOVE Irish and Scottish music.

I saw a performance with a concertina and was in love.... Although they do look complicated to learn, I may be ok with TAB, and this forum, haha.
ME TOO!

Anyway, I'm here to ask a question.

I KNOW.... everyone says stay away from Ebay, and a beginner unit is $300-400.... Well, I honestly can't pay it. I've got $100. So, it's learn, or not.

That in mind, I know a $1500 unit will sound better, etc... but can people weigh in on the playability and quality of these two units.

BONETTI 20 Button
MORELLI 30 Button

http://shop.vendio.c...9639/index.html

That's the USA seller, also is on ebay with a BIG Perfect Rating.

Ad says these are Italian Engineered (so yeah, maybe italian specs at a chinese plant, but so are hohner, samick, and every other company, even the made in US ones...) And they are warranted.

So again, I know it's lower-er grade, but will it hold up, anyone actually use one of these -- especially the BONETTI



SECOND QUESTION: I LOVE Irish reels and slow airs, as well as Scottish pipes and slow airs. I was learning it on the harmonica too.
I also love Klezmer music

That in mind....... 30 Button Anglo VS 20 Button Anglo ?

Again, I know enough to know a 30 is same layout as 20 with 10 more accent keys...so you can learn basics and have a more advanced unit in the 30.
But, the 20 would be plainer to see and learn and is a little cheaper
You might be surprised at how little difference in complexity there is between the two. To start with, you can begin playing simple tunes by just ignoring the extra row. But when you get further along, it's really nice to have them there....

I am content to only buy what I need. I don't need upgrades, or what if down the road, if it will play what I want. You know?

I saw a little 20 Button on Youtube playing Pogues music - Awesome !

But again, I don't know enough to know better.

PLEASE ASAP some thoughts if you can.

THANK YOU !!

Jim


Never, ever, underestimate what you need in an instrument. Buy the best you can find funds for; anything less will be a disappointment - probably sooner rather than later. But don't let the notion that a cheaper instrument is not worth having enter into your mind. It's better to have a cheap concertina than to have none. For all but the most self-important elitist types, a little showmanship and enthusiasm with a cheap instrument can produce a better performance than an uninspired, perfectly played tune on the best of equipment.

Never, ever, underestimate your potential ability. Assume you are a future grand master; anything less will leave you open to discouragement and eventually, to quitting. You need to persevere during those inevitable moments when you feel overwhelmed and as if this thing is too difficult. Learning to play is worth the invested time and effort!




#5 jimbo77

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 09:16 PM

Hey, thanks to you both.

@FB -- yeah, my brother can pick up anything with strings and play, but I still like him (grin.)

And yeah, I like the idea, something is better than nothing... I mean, the only person likely to complain about any noticable quality difference is the pet cockatiel. The family won't just to keep me trying , haha.

But seriously, the company I listed has been courteous and responsive, explaining their quality and factory etc... And there's not a single listed bad remark about them or the product - unlike some no-name ebay units.

And, if I am gonna get fed up, I'd rather it be over $100, and not $1500 which I can't afford to loose to a paper-weight at the moment.

I was just hoping someone might have actually tried out one of those units, but maybe it's better that there's not... nothing to add to preconceptions.. right 8)

Thanks again

And YES, I will go for the 30 Button afterall... it seems to be 6 or 7 folds, standard.

Now, to find a good beginner's instruction for an anglo 30 button (most don't tell you if they are 20 or 30 button instruction) that uses TAB, not music notation.

Thanks for the encouragement.

James

#6 Bill N

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 09:20 PM

Hi, I'm James from canada... and I can't play hardly an instrument (grin)
Thanks for this forum !


Jim


Jim,

If you are anywhere near Hamilton/Oakville/Cambridge or Toronto, and want to try out a Rochelle (and a Morse if you like) send me a PM. I've lent the Rochelle out, but will have it back in 2 weeks.

I had a 20 button East German box before my Rochelle, and must say it's honestly worth scratching up the extra couple of hundred bucks for the difference in playability and enjoyment. And if you decide you don't want to stick with it, you can sell a gently used Rochelle for pretty close to what it cost new.

Bill

#7 jimbo77

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Posted 15 November 2009 - 09:40 PM

Bill, thanks for the resell note; good to know.
Actually I'm on the east coast, but appreciate the offer. It is hard without handling an instrument first.

And yeah, I don't doubt paying extra for a well built unit is worth it in playability, and for performance playing and the like. And I can certainly see myself paying in the future if I decide to stay with the instrument and want something more lasting.

But you know... my brother had the cheapest of little mandolins, and I bought an expensive F style custom built unit... and would you believe, his little unit that cost more than 10 times less sounded so much more sweeter.

If it is at least built decent, and you play carefully, a lot has to do with like Fatbellows said, the heart of the playing.


Looking forward to getting into one !!

james

#8 Anglo-Irishman

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 04:28 AM

But you know... my brother had the cheapest of little mandolins, and I bought an expensive F style custom built unit... and would you believe, his little unit that cost more than 10 times less sounded so much more sweeter.

If it is at least built decent, and you play carefully, a lot has to do with like Fatbellows said, the heart of the playing.

James,
As a mandolinist, I can identify with this. A lot is transferrable from one instrument to the other. When you start learning, you're chiefly concerned with finding where the notes are, and getting smooth transitions from one note to the next. A cheap concertina has the same notes on the same buttons as an expensive one - like the frets on a cheap or expensive mandolin. The differences between a cheap and an expensive instrument are 1) sound and 2) playability. The sound (tibmre) only becomes important when you get to the performance stage, when you want to produce a loud, beautiful tone effortlessly. Playability has to do with the ergonomics of the individual instrument, and how quickly and easily you can form a note. This becomes important when you've reached the stage where your fingers can move quickly and accurately from note to note. There's a direct correlation between the height of the action on a mandolin and the button action in a concertina. (The reason why your brother's cheap mandolin sounds better than your expensive one is probably that he's good enough to overcome its deficiencies.)

I don't know how old you are, but the time to start learning an instrument is NOW (at the latest!). Fluent, confident playing comes from an instinctive feel for where the next note is, and this familiarity comes from experience alone. So if you've got $100 to spend now, get a $100 concertina, and start learning and playing and gaining experience. If you wait until you've got $1500 for a "good" concertina, you'll have wasted the intervening time. If you start now on a cheapo, by the time you've saved up the money for a good one - be it 1, 5 or 10 years - you'll be able to play it straight away. And your playing will probably make a quantum leap, because of the improved sound and playability.

I personally started out on a cheap East German 20-button Anglo, because it was all I could get back then (pre-Internet era). I even played folk songs at parties and led hymns at youth services with it. And when I later got a Bandoneon and later still a 30-button Anglo, I only had to learn the extra buttons. But my touch had developed such that I was able to exploit the improved tone immediately.

If you do start off with a 30-button, my advice would be to forget the outer row until you can play fluently by ear on the two main rows. You can then reward yourself with the delights of alternate fingerings and additional keys ;)

Cheers,
John

#9 Ralph Jordan

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 06:49 AM

I'm with Anglo Irishman on this.
Get whatever you can afford.
Then as circumstances allow. Move on up. Indeed it's probably preferable to get something cheaper just in case you don't get on with the beast!
It's better to dip your toes into the murky waters in a cheap way, than not dip your toes in at all.
But, Be warned, If you get the tina bug, you'd better get a well paid job!
I get the idea that you are set on an Anglo system. Fair enough, but don't dismiss the other systems. In the UK you can still get (just about!) a 48 key Duet for 500 (ish) pounds, and that could be a Wheatstone or Lachenal.
It all depends what style you intend to play.
It seems that Anglos and Englishes are the most popular systems here in the UK. I'm just glad that I took up the Duet. They were dead cheap in the 70's. You couldnt give them away.
So....BUY ONE NOW! Thats an order!!
Don't know the Rochelles personally, but have heard good reports.
I wish you luck, and an empty wallet!
Call back to this site though, we're an amiable bunch and are only too willing to give advice, and then argue with ourselves about it!

Regards Ralphie


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#10 jimbo77

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Posted 16 November 2009 - 04:25 PM

THANKS GUYS

I HAVE decided on the $119 Bonetti 2010 30 Button unit. I spoke with the company, They have a 100% return policy even if you just don't like it. Word is no returns on this model, and even their ebay store is hundreds in the positive (no negative) -- surely someone would have burned them if there was a problem.

ALSO, I was told they use a Leather constructed Bellows. Not paper. At the worst, it's Leather-ish.. so, should be ok.

And, I will learn on the 2 rows, and leave the 3rd to later temptation, haha, as Anglo-Irishman said (Love that you do hymns on it!)

I was asked age... sadly I'm starting late at 38.

Ralph, yeah, everything I read says Irish and Klezmer is best on a n Anglo.. which is good since the English are not easy to get. And the Anglo is abundant.

Will let you know my thoughts when I get it.

Kindest
jim

#11 reddog076

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Posted 28 December 2009 - 08:56 AM

Jim,
I have been following your topic with great interest. For the exact same reasons I am looking at the Bonetti (on EBay). How has this worked out for you?

#12 drbones

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Posted 28 December 2009 - 03:55 PM

Given the choice between the 2, and seeing the descriptions are almost identical, and if this is what you can afford or even feel like laying out to see if you even want to pursue it, I'd definitely go with the 30 button for $20 more.
Lord knows I started with less quality instruments than either and I've enjoyed them tremendously.
I went on to a Rochelle and found it a lot easier to play because it was more responsive. In fact, still have it.
I've upgraded to a more expensive one now and it certainly makes a difference.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to be getting on to my fourth full time job.Posted Image

#13 Trailltrader

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Posted 08 February 2013 - 07:44 PM

Thank You everyone for your input on this topic.  I've been lurking for the past 6 months, and I'm thinking about a 30 button off ebay.  My goal is to do busking in Seattle this upcoming (2013) summer.  Thank you once again






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