|posted: 8/2/2005 at 11:38:24 AM ET|
Yes, there are a few differences.
First, fingering is different depending on which single horn (F or Bb) you are comparing to a double horn.
Second, the sound will be a little different. Bb horns are not as mellow and rich sounding as F horns. So if you are used to playing a single Bb horn, you will notice a darker sound when you play a double horn. But if you are playing a single F horn, you'll hear a more "brassy" sound when you switch over to the Bb side. This "negative" is offset by the fact that you should be able to handle a higher range more easily.
The physical mechanics of playing, aside from fingering, aren't any different between the two.
As far as manufacturers go: Conn, Holton, Amati, Yamaha - these are all good names, although, you'll find plenty of people how have issues with each of them. If you're looking to spend more (upwards of $10K+), Lawson and Schmid are two names that I can think of off the top of my head that make excellent custom horns.