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Wakker E4 Soprano Concertina


David Hansen
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Wakker E4 Soprano Concertina

 

Up for sale is a 12 sided Wakker E4 soprano concertina, 42 keys pitched from F4 to F7 with air release button, 5.5” wide, weighs 2 lbs., Amboyna wood with gold keys/fittings and a Wakker fitted case. I originally thought I would use it to play harmonies with my Aeola but I never have and probably never will. I had the instrument retuned and re-voiced by Wim in 2018, he said this about this E4: “The instrument is based on a tenor treble, as most sopranos are. This particular instrument has an extended range down to F. The central C, is the 2nd button from the bottom on the left, not the first as on a standard treble. It plays just like a normal treble as long as you start on the right button. This concertina is one of only a few E4 models with vintage reeds, something we occasionally did in those days. The reeds in your instrument are 1880 Wheatstone. The reeds in your instrument are pretty good. After voicing and tuning it has a bright sound with even and clear harmonics.  Your instrument is in very good condition and is only one of 3 with gold buttons and fittings.” $3200.00 or best offer + shipping + Insurance. Here is a video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NZiSRO-eHgA

 

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Edited by David Hansen
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5 hours ago, Geoff Wooff said:

So  as I  understand   from  your  description,  this  instrument  is  actually  a   fifth  lower  in pitch  than  a  standard   Wakker  Soprano  ?

 

No not my words, those are Wim's, it is a standard E4 Soprano concertina and the key layout is like a tenor concertina only the notes are pitched an octave higher. You can use the same fingering patterns as on a treble, you just start in a different place, if that makes sense.

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Sorry  for  any  confusion  David  but  in the  first  sentence  of your    description  you  state  " 42 keys  pitched from  F4 to F7 " .  On the  Wakker Concertinas  website  a  standard  E4  Soprano  is  said  to  have  42 keys  from  Middle C to  C. 

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Well I'm thoroughly confused! On his website Wim says of the E4 "The layout is identical to a tenor english (minus the top 6 notes), but sounding one octave higher." So that gives the range as C4 - C7 with tenor fingering. But above Wim is quoted as saying "The instrument is based on a tenor treble, ..." which gives it treble fingering, confirmed by "It plays just like a normal treble ..."

 

Wim also says "This particular instrument has an extended range down to F." So the range appears to be F3 - F6.

 

Taking all this together, the instrument sounds more like a treble extended down by one note than a soprano. Which I imagine would make it a very attractive instrument for an English player. (Fortunately I'm not tempted - I'm a Crane player now.)

 

LJ

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18 minutes ago, John Wild said:

Is that correct or is it one octave higher?

If C' is the C above middle C (C4) then is it an octave higher, which is what David said in his first post:

On 6/17/2020 at 1:32 PM, David Hansen said:

42 keys pitched from F4 to F7

 

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10 hours ago, Don Taylor said:

If C' is the C above middle C (C4) ...

 

I'm not really familiar with the C' notation. According to wikipedia it's called Helmholtz pitch notation and c' is middle C (or C4 in scientific notation). The lowest note on David's chart is "f" which is a fifth below middle C (F3).

 

LJ

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If the chart is right, it is not is standard E4 soprano, which ranges from C to C!? I played one a couple of years ago...

This one looks more like a piccolo ( one octave above treble!? ).

 I just tried to play along... To me it looks like a standard E4!?

Anyway, it is a very fine and rare  instrument at a good price! 

 

 

 

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21 hours ago, David Hansen said:

It is just as responsive as my Aeola, I really don't know what Victorian reeds sound like.

I was thinking more of their responsiveness as the Victorian ones tended to be a bit slower than the later models (1900 +).  I assume the reeds were from a top of the line instrument and, of course, Wim would have optimised reed performance.  Re sound, the older ones tended to be somewhat sweet and quieter than later models but that could be construction rather than reed design that dictated that.  A beautiful instrument.

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16 hours ago, Little John said:

I'm not really familiar with the C' notation. According to wikipedia it's called Helmholtz pitch notation and c' is middle C

Actually, I thought it was a mis-capitalized version of the ABC notation where '"C" is middle C and c' is an octave higher.

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