The Best Trumpet Mouthpiece For Endurance

two good mouthpieces for endurance
it’s not these two…these are good, but they are not the best all-around mouthpieces for endurance.

The Two Best Trumpet Mouthpieces For Endurance

I get a lot of emails with the questions,

  • What are some good trumpet mouthpieces for endurance?
  • If I want to play for a long time, what is the best mouthpiece for endurance?
  • Could you name your favorite trumpet mouthpiece for stamina?
  • Please, what is the best mouthpiece for playing trumpet without getting tired?

…I think you get the picture, endurance… endurance……. endurance!

Is there such a thing as a good trumpet mouthpiece for endurance?

Well, let’s get one thing straight right from the start. There are no shortcuts when it comes to playing the trumpet. A good endurance is a byproduct of efficient playing, in combination with a good and regular practice routine…

…HOWEVER, mouthpieces do make a difference.

And, because I get so many requests about this, in this article I will present two veary good trumpet mouthpieces for endurance.

The Two Best Mouthpieces For Stamina And Endurance Are…

Let’s take a closer look at them…

The Denis Wick 4X Heavytop

Click image to read other user reviews on Amazon

I have found the Denis Wick 4x to be a phenomenal trumpet mouthpiece for endurance. And this is something that other trumpet players, all around the world, are reporting as well.

  • Model: Heavy Top 4X
  • Cup diameter: 16.50mm
  • Rim width: 5.75 mm
  • Bore size: 3.74 mm
  • Backbore: V-type
  • Silver plated

Why The 4x Is Such a Good Mouthpiece For Endurance

  • The Rim Shape

The Denis Wick 4X is a very good trumpet mouthpiece for endurance because of several reasons. The rim is very comfortable, and even more importantly, it is a bit wider than on other mouthpieces…

…of course that means that, even if using mouthpiece pressure,  the rim will not”dig” so deep into your lips, cutting off blood flow, and thus it helps with endurance and being able to play for a long time.

  • The Backbore and Cup

You will also be able to play the Denis Wick 4x for a long time, without getting tired, because of the “V type” backbore and the way it perfectly matches the cup depth and the cup volume.

  • The Rime Size

Another thing to note is that the rim diameter is perfect for endurance, for most trumpeters (keep in mind that we are different with different sized lips and face structure, but I’m speaking in general here, for the vast majority of trumpet players)

  • The HeayTop /Mass

There is a a general misconception in the trumpet community that heavier trumpet mouthpieces requires a bit more effort to play because of the added mass. This is wrong. In fact, it is the other way around. A heavier mouthpiece helps focus and center the tone…

…this, in turn, will make the player be able to “relax into the notes”, trusting that they will be exactly where they should, and a more relaxed way of playing will of course pay huge dividends in the endurance department as well.

Now, of course there is always a point of diminishing returns, where even more mass is no longer helpful, and will start to require more energy to play. The Denis Wick 4x, however, has got the exact right amount of mass. The balance is spot on.

If you want to learn more about the Denis Wick 4X, and read other real user reviews, you can  click here to check current pricing at Amazon.

Where To Use The Mouthpiece – Is The Denis Wick 4x a Lead Mouthpiece Or a “High Note” Mouthpiece?

In my opinion, the Denis Wick 4X is an “all around” mouthpiece. The cup is shallow enough to be able to play lead, or high note stuff on it, yet it is deep enough to use for classical, jazz, chamber music, hymns in church, marching band etc.

That said, if you play the second trumpet in a big symphony orchestra, where you only have to play low notes, and there is no need for extra endurance, I would probably choose a mouthpiece that has a deeper cup to guarantee a very robust low register for the big orchestra.

The mouthpiece is excellent in the following musical situations

  • Marching band
    It’s perfect for this as the cup depth is deep enough yet shallow enough to help with the high register and endurance
  • Bands that play commercial, dance music or other entertainment music These playing situations can often be very endurance demanding, and again, the Denis Wick is perfect for this. Good control, a perfect sound that can “sizzle” if you need it to, yet big enough to fit the music.
  • A taxing trumpet solo in church
    Or any other trumpet solo as well. Yes, the Wick 4x is big enough for classical solos

How much does the Denis Wick 4X Cost

As with so many other products, the pricing tend to fluctuate quite a bit.  For the phenomenal quality and amount of mouthpiece  you get, it’s surprisingly affordable. At least at the time of writing this article. You can click here to check current pricing at Amazon.

The Bach 3c Megatone Mouthpiece

Click image to check price on Amazon

The Bach 3c, and especially the 3c megatone, is a very good trumpet mouthpiece for endurance.

Like you read earlier in this article, the added mass helps with focus of the sound, and the center of the notes. This makes the trumpeter able to “lean into” the notes in a relaxed way, and thus it helps him play for a longer time without getting tired…

…but there are more reasons why the Bach 3c is good mouthpiece for stamina.

Let’s take a closer look…

  • Cup depth: medium
  • Heavyweight design
  • Throat size: 3,73 mm
  • Cup diameter: 16.30 mm
  • Rim thickness: medium
  • Backbore: 10

Why The 3c Is Such a Good Trumpet Mouthpiece For Stamina / Endurance ?

The Cup

Many trumpet players know how the Bach numbering system works, but not everyone knows that the 3c cup is actually shallower than the rest of the Bach “c” cups. That’s right, this means that for example the 7C is deeper than the 3c.

This is also one reason why the 3c is an excellent mouthpiece for endurance. A slightly more shallow cup helps with articulation and air compression. This makes it much easier to play more efficiently. With the megatone 3c you basically save energy, and thus, you will be able to play for a long time without getting tired.

The Backbore

The backbore, cup and boresize on the 3c, are all created in a way that they work perfectly together, making the mouthpiece very easy to play. Again, you save energy and this will help you to play longer before getting tired.

The Rim Size

Just like with the Denis Wick, the rim size is not too big or small. If speaking in average terms,  it is safe to say that most trumpet players, (not all, of course, but  most) find the  diameter of the 3c rim perfect for optimal endurance. It is just a tiny bit smaller in diameter than the Denis Wick.

If you are interested in what others have to say about this mouthpiece then you can click here to read other real user reviews on Amazon.

Where To Use The 3c Mouthpiece

The Bach 3c is truly an all around mouthpiece. I wrote this article with the intention of presenting two good trumpet mouthpieces for endurance, that could be used in all kinds of musical settings.

There are some extremely shallow lead / high note mouthpieces, that also are phenomenal for endurance, but they are specialized for high note playing and does not work very well as an all around mouthpiece, so that’s why I didn’t mention any of them in this blog post.

You Will Do Very Well With The 3c in The Following Situations

  • Marching band
  • Commercial music
  • Classical music
  • Jazz / big band
  • Church and playing hymns

As you can see, you can use it pretty much wherever you want to. It is even possible to play the screaming lead part in a big band on it, however, it is more common that trumpet players use a mouthpiece that with a bit more shallower cup than the 3c for that. But, again, it is indeed possible.

The 3c is also good for classical music and I have been using the 3c myself for many years as my main classical trumpet mouthpiece.

How Much Does The 3c Megatone Cost

At the time of writing this article the Bach 3c megatone was a bit more expensive than the Denis Wick 4x.

You can click here to check the current pricing at Amazon.

Which One Should I Choose?

It is a tough one, because they are both phenomenal mouthpieces. They are not only the best trumpet mouthpieces for endurance, but they are super high quality mouthpieces in every other way as well…

…I really can’t put one before the other.

Ok ok, If I had a gun to my head, I would perhaps say “choose the bach 3c”, but then again, the Bach 3c is a bit more expensive. So, if you have the money, try the 3c first.

If money is tight, try the Denis Wick first. And lastly, if you are a trumpet nerd like me, get both of them.

Thank you for reading the article “what is the best trumpet mouthpiece for endurance”. I hope you found it informative. Keep practicing and remember to always have fun when playing.

-Robert Slotte-

Bonus Section:
F.A.Q’s About Endurance And Trumpet

Q: What are some good exercises to help improve trumpet endurance?

A: It’s a matter of learning to play efficiently. Of course, it’s also important to build strength and endurance in the embouchure muscles, but efficient playing is even more important.

The best way to do this is practicing very softly, but with a good sound (never do anything at the expense of your sound). If you want to learn more about this then I recommend that you read two more articles on this blog. Both of these articles talk about efficient playing, exactly what to practice and how to do it:

  1. How to improve trumpet endurance
  2. How to get rid of airy sound on trumpet

Q: Why do some trumpet players believe that heavy mouthpieces are worse for endurance?

A: Yes, as I wrote in the article, this is often a general misconception amongst trumpet players, but it is actually incorrect. It probably comes from the fact that heavier mouthpieces can make the notes a bit more difficult to respond. In other words, the very beginning of a note can take a bit more energy to get to “speak”.

This is not a big difference though, and one thing we need to understand is that, once the note is sounding, with the heavier mouthpiece, we have “momentum”.  And the very beginning of a note is just a small part of the whole note you play anyway, even if you play quarter notes.

In addition to this, the increased mass on heavier mouthpieces helps with focus and centering of the notes, allowing for the trumpeter to relax and just let the notes “pop” out like they are meant to. When putting  those factors into account we can see that we actually get more endurance from them, and not less. Hope that makes sense.

Q: How can I learn to play both higher and have amazing endurance in the upper registeR?

A: Ahh, another one looking for the holy grail. Let me know if you find it 🙂 Joking aside, it takes years and years and years of diligent practice in a smart way. No shortcuts here.

Q: Is the cornet easier to play when it comes to endurance?

A: It depends on the player. Some people feel much more comfortable playing the cornet, and because they do, it will also show in the endurance department. The other way around is also true, some people just feel more at home playing the trumpet and for those, the cornet will probably not help their endurance at all.

Q: What is your opinion on the P.E.T.E. Warburton embouchure training device, can it increase endurance?

A: Yes it can. It can indeed increase your endurance if you use it in a specific way. Overuse it and it can do more damage than good though. I wrote an article about how I managed to significantly  increase my endurance using it.

I had to go through a period of a bit of trial and error before I figured out the best way to use it though. If interested you can read this article about my Warburton P.E.T.E. review.

Q: I once hear someone say that plastic mouthpieces are good for endurance. Is this true?

A: They will probably not help you with endurance and stamina. Probably not hurt  either, but I really don’t think you’ll find then particularly helpful for stamina. Unless you have to play outside in the wintertime and it’s very cold…then they are preferred  🙂

Q: Will loud playing hurt or help my endurance?

A: It depends. If you play correctly and efficiently it should not hurt. That said, most of us do not play 100% efficiently, and then loud playing tend to “spread” the lips. This can hurt your response, sound, articulation and your endurance. Generally I recommend soft practicing for building endurance.

Q: If find I struggle with endurance even in the very low register. How can this be?

A: Tension! You are using more tension than necessary in the low register. If you are playing with excess tension in the chops you will get tired quickly, no matter in what register you are playing.

Q: I sometimes have better endurance after a day off. Is this normal?

A: Yes and no. It is normal in the way that many people experience this. Your embouchure muscles probably needed a bit of rest. However, if you structure your practice session / sessions in a way that you do not practice on tired lips then a day off would not be necessary for recovery.

Q: My endurance always sucks in the morning. I do fine in the evenings though. Why?

A: Good question. One reason could be that you overdid it the day before, but also, the trumpet is a physical instrument, and all physical activities are easier to do in the afternoon than in the mornings. This is something that people who compete in different sports are well aware of. Just be patient and take as much time as you need to get ready in the mornings…IF you have the time, of course.

Q: Is the piccolo trumpet good for endurance?

A: Well, it depends on what exactly you mean, with that question. When we are playing the piccolo trumpet,  we generally play a piece that is quite demanding. This means we will most likely also get tired pretty quickly. That said, if you were to play that exact same piece with your big B-flat trumpet, you would probably lose your chops even quicker. So in that way, yes, the piccolo helps.

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