Recorder Forum Home Page › Forum › Recorder Makes, Models and Maintenance › Moeck or Mollenhauer?
- This topic has 33 replies, 7 voices, and was last updated October 28, 2020 at 7:16 pm by Ken In Dallas.
June 26, 2016 at 8:17 am #380
I would like to buy a new soprano recorder.
I was thinking about a granedille or a tulipwood soprano; unfortunately I can not try the difference and probably I’m going to choose granedille because it seems more elegant and instinctively I feel safer also for the sound.
I should choose between a Moeck or a Mollenhauer (rottenburgh or denner serie).
I dont know if one can be better of the other and in particular the difference: advantages and disadvantages of the two models.
I have noticed that rottenburgh soprano is a bit schorter and probably with a little greater piper diameter.Right hand holes are closer.
Is it possible that this model have less condensation problem and louder sound?(and the Mollenhauer a softer or more sweet one?).
About the sound in highest register is Mollenhauer more easy?
More simply: is there anyone that have some experience with rottenburgh Moeck and denner Mollenhauer sopranos in order to explain me the differences? Is there any difference between granedille and tulipwood sound?
Thanks very much!
Luca from ItalyJuly 1, 2016 at 4:27 am #381
Luca, I can only partially answer your questions. I’ve tried a Moeck Rothenburg soprano in pearwood and olive wood and I know someone who plays this model in grenadilla. Both the pearwood and olive wood instruments seem like very good instruments. They have an even register, excellent intonation and the high notes speak really well (provided you use good technique, of course). The tone is lovely and the instrument is comfortable to hold. The olive wood has a slightly bigger sound and character but the pearwood is still pretty strong and perhaps sweeter. I know someone who plays the Moeck Rothenburg soprano in grenadilla and it sounds beautiful. The difference is that it has more edge, power and projection but it still sounds very similar to the instruments I described above. I would say the Moeck in grenadilla is more suitable for solo work, although I know people who play it in an ensemble as well. I have never tried the Mollenhauer Denner soprano because the owner of the shop that I ordered from indicated the Mollenhauer did not have as good intonation as the Moeck so he decided not to send me one to try out. I am testing out a Mollenhauer Dream soprano in pearwood and a Mollenhauer Dream Edition in plumwood. The instrument in plumwood is gorgeous and the pearwood one is pretty good considering it’s not that expensive. The Dream models have a wider bore, similar to Renaissance instruments. They have a different character from the baroque instruments. With these instruments I see a bigger difference between pearwood and plumwood than between the Moeck pearwood and olive wood. The plumwood instrument is superior to the pearwood in my opinion. Maybe someone else can comment on the Mollenhauer Denner.July 2, 2016 at 3:23 pm #385Chris BaronParticipant
go to unicorn music and maybe buy that morgan denner soprano in boxwood by mollenhauer.
i have the alto and it is a superb instrument with good tone, timbre, tuning and easy easy reliable high notes.
Attachments:You must be logged in to view attached files.July 3, 2016 at 9:18 pm #387
Thanks very much!October 5, 2016 at 4:28 pm #475
I have bought a new Moeck rottemburgh in tulipwood and an used Mollenhauer denner in pearwood.
I like very much the rottemburgh: very good intonation and very good sound.
About the Mollenhauer denner I can say:
The sound seems a little more loud and clear but I prefear Moeck tone that seem to be a little muffled.
The problem with Mollenhauer is that intonation is not convincing. High B is a little higher than normal and I think that also some other notes have some little problem. Intonation improve warming the recorder but it is still not perfect.October 5, 2016 at 4:38 pm #476I am testing out a Mollenhauer Dream soprano in pearwood and a Mollenhauer Dream Edition in plumwood. The instrument in plumwood is gorgeous and the pearwood one is pretty good considering it’s not that expensive. The Dream models have a wider bore, similar to Renaissance instruments. They have a different character from the baroque instruments. With these instruments I see a bigger difference between pearwood and plumwood than between the Moeck pearwood and olive wood. The plumwood instrument is superior to the pearwood in my opinion. Maybe someone else can comment on the Mollenhauer Denner.
I would like to buy a louder soprano recorder to play irish-medioeval musik with some friends:
we could play outside and without amplification.
Is the Mollenhauer dream in plumwood a good choice? It can be better a Kynseker or a renaissance… or other models?October 5, 2016 at 9:22 pm #477
Luca, regarding this part of your post “I would like to buy a louder soprano recorder to play irish-medioeval musik with some friends:…”
I think that if you are looking to get more volume the Mollenhauer Dream in plumwood would be a good choice but also a Ganassi model made by Stefan Blezinger (of course it will be much more expensive). You could also try a Yamaha soprano in grenadilla wood (baroque model) which to me sounds bright and edgy. All I know about Kynseker is that it’s a true Renaissance model with slightly different fingerings. Mollenhauer Dream is more of a hybrid.October 6, 2016 at 4:46 pm #478
About a recorder for irish-medioeval music John Everingham (saundersrecorders.com) answerd me…
“I think the Moeck Rottenburgh descants are a bad choice for folk and early music.
My suggestion is a Mollenhauer ‘Dream’, perhaps one made of a hard wood, not pear. I can understand that you are uncertain about the tone quality but I think that a different tone is the whole point of moving away from a high baroque model. You would get used to it.
The Dream will also do for loud early music, and looks the part. For soft early music a Kobliczek ‘Praetorius’ may be a better bet.
The Kynseker models (either Moeck or Mollenhauer, in plum which is so much nicer than maple or pear) fall between the two extremes. Not loud, but with a slightly reedy, intimate and resonant sound.
I have no experience of the current Moeck Renaissance range (very costly). I don’t care much for the earlier version and the first version is, I think, rather disappointing.
If you can find one, a Kung ‘Classica’ descant in a hard wood (bubinga, palisander etc.) would suit your folk music. This is the recorder that Aulos copied for their first (flat bottomed) 205 model which is still a very good instrument to play in folk sessions. (Look for one at a car boot sale or in a charity shop!)”
Getting a Ganassi for use in a band would probably be a mistake. The usual repertoire for such a recorder is early Venetian and possibly Jacob van Eyck. There are also fingering and compass issues to cope with.October 6, 2016 at 6:39 pm #479
If he is right:
Kynseker seems to be someting between baroque and renaissance recorders and it is louder than baroque recorders but not so loud as renaissance (es ganassi or Moeck renaissance) and Mollenhauer dream.
He says that probably ganassi is not a good choice.
I dont know if he is right but ganassi is very expensive and need also some fingering corretion.
My teacher suggested me to save money for a ganassy but I think that is better if my first ganassi is an alto one and not a soprano. My idea is to buy a soprano Mollenhauer dream edition for the folk music and in future I will look for an used alto ganassi.October 6, 2016 at 7:56 pm #481
I respect John Everingham’s opinion. He is very knowledgeable. He offers lots of really good detailed information on his website although I don’t always agree. I wouldn’t pick a Moeck soprano for folk music either. Luca, when you first posted here in July you had not specified that folk music was what you were interested in. I personally purchased the Moeck soprano but I use it for baroque music. It seems to blend in well in the ensemble where I’m playing. I only mentioned the Ganassi because you were asking about a “loud” recorder. The Ganassi is pretty loud. I have heard professional recorder players use it for the usual repertoire but also for modern classical music. It wouldn’t make sense to get it for ensemble playing unless everybody else was using it as well. As far as I know Kynseker is a true Renaissance style recorder. I wouldn’t pick it for your needs and it is true that the fingerings are different. I also think that the Mollenhauer Dream is probably your best choice for folk music. Mollenhauer Dream comes in plastic, pearwood or plumwood. It doesn’t come in any other hard wood. I have all three of them and I don’t like the plastic (although I’ve heard that lots of people who play folk music like it), the pearwood is much nicer than the plastic but the plumwood is the best of all. It has more resonance, more volume, both the low notes and the top notes are easier to get. So I think that your decision sounds like a very sensible one. Your teacher is right.
Regarding the used Mollenhauer Denner you mentioned you don’t like the intonation. It probably needs revoicing. So I would take it to a reputable shop where they can advise you on that.October 6, 2016 at 8:24 pm #482
Thanks very much!
When I posted the first time I was looking for a baroque recorder and I’m very happy for the Moeck rottemburgh (and I’m also happy for the denner even if intonation is not perfect).
Probably it was better to open a new topic for the “folk-medioeval recorder”; I dont know if it is possible to do it now.
I will probably play outside or without amplification (not always) with other instruments like guitar, violin, darbuka; I dont know if there will be an other recorder.
Ganassy probably can be a possibility but I’m not ready to buy and choose one.
Probably I will buy an used one when there will be a good opportunity.
November 19, 2016 at 12:20 am #494
- This reply was modified 6 years, 8 months ago by Luca Luigi Aschieri.
I have bought the Mollenhauer dream recorder in plum and is good and interesting even if I had hoped in a more strong sound.
I did also an experiment asking to Shearwater wistles if he could made for me a C “recorder” whistle. It was produced by Hans Braker but he probably have big problems if he is still a alive.November 19, 2016 at 12:21 am #495
So I decided to write to Shearwater and asking if he wanted to try and make a C recorder whistle for me.
It was very helpful and after some experiments and prototipe he made a C recorder whistle for me with a good priece.
It is very good and is working well even if I had to make some minor adjustments: intonation seemed fine but playing known music I realized that could be better.
For this reason I have enlarged a little some holes: the 3 in particular (starting from the bottom).
I have also tried to polish the windows and in particular the labium, that was a little rough and coarse: the sound is significantly improved.
I said it to John Bushby (Shearwater) and he promised to enlarge a little the 3 hole and paying much more attention in future whistles about polisching windows and labium.
If you want to listen the sound these are my new videos on youtube:
July 25, 2018 at 11:08 pm #647Jonathan DoddParticipant
An old thread I know – But somebody might well come across it on a Google search as I did. That led to me registering for the group, which I didn’t know about! Anyway: I own three descents of similar price band, a Moeck Rottenburgh (new model) in maple, a Mollenhauer denner (new) in pearwood, and an older Dolmetsch in rosewood. I can’t compare Moeck and Mollenhauer in the same wood, but I can make some observations. The Moeck is of course more strident than the others, but is a very musical instrument. Not harsh at all, merely capable of asserting itself when needed, although the lowest notes are weak in comparison to the overall scale of the instrument. It has impeccable intonation. I think it less capable of subtlety and variation in tone than the others. It’s like an actor who can only play one type of character, but does it very well! The Mollenhauer strangely feels smaller somehow in the hands than the others, although the stretch is actually a little longer! It has a lovely purity of sound and is capable of a lot of variation. You need to feel it out carefully to find what it can do. It needs coaxing; simply, you have to work in tandem with it. A very complex instrument in the price bracket. The overall sound is less bold than the Moeck, but it is still a highly capable solo instrument. It also has a strong low range. Intonation is good but occasionally requires adjustment from the player. Not as good as the Moeck. Also I think it ugly aesthetically; a dull brown, like cheap plastic, almost without grain. A shame! The Dolmetsch is of course no longer in production but second-hand examples are fairly common and cost around the same as the others new. It has a sweet tone which is very even across the registers. It doesn’t assert itself but does everything reliably and without fuss. Well worth a look as an alternative if you can find one. Hope this might help people researching the Moeck/Mollenhauer choice thing!January 10, 2019 at 2:05 pm #677PGalbeParticipant
My three year old Moeck Rottenburgh alto, in rosewood, has developed a crack in the head.
Is this a common problem with rosewood?
The relative humidity in the house is around 50%.
I oil it two or three times a year and I swab the interior after playing.
- This reply was modified 4 years, 4 months ago by PGalbe.
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