I’m trying to think how to word this… Over the last several decades that relations with China have been ‘normalized,’ I’ve had a number of friends and acquaintances that have ventured into having whatever their product was manufactured in that country. They’ve all had problems maintaining control over their product.
If I may over-simplify and even make a guess, I would think that when older recorder manufacturing molds get out of spec, they continue to be used for production runs of instruments that we end up seeing on low-priced overseas websites and ‘interesting’ Ebay sales. What may be out of ‘spec’ is a wildcard. It might just be the color. In the case of recorders there are so many variables that can affect intonation and voice adversely.
Of course I’m unqualified to speculate about an inexpensive recorder line that I’ve never examined, but inexpensive instruments are often called “School” recorders, inferring that they are only good enough for a child to learn the basics on. Also there’s the old, “If it sounds too good to be true…” adage. Sometimes a ‘deal’ can be a dollar’s ‘dead end.’ We end up having to spend the equivalent once more just to get what we wanted in the first place.
Self quarantined these last months, I read trusted reviews and purchased a Descant/Treble pair of Yamaha 400 series, an Aulos Haka Descant, a Zen On G-1A Treble, (and a Mollenhauer Denner wooden Treble.) All well respected makers. Not one ‘dead end’ penny. All seem to have their own special joy at play. I never had the money for a Porsche. Plastic recorders? I can afford a few of the best. I just feel we’re so lucky to have such musical and yet affordable plastic instruments to play. No?