Harp Hohner

Which type of harmonica should I buy?

I’m a beginner at playing harmonica, and I’m currently using a $5 plastic piece o’ crap from Pier 1. It’s already leaking air and terribly out of tune. I looked into buying a new one; there are SO many different kinds, and I don’t even know where to begin. I’m thinking a diatonic harp in the key of C (most likely a Hohner). This still leaves me with buttloads of options, like Special 20, Old Standby, Marine Band, Bluesband, Blues Harp, Golden Melody, and so much more. Which would be best for someone who’s not too serious about harmonica? I’d like to be able to bend notes and have a nice tone, but I’m not ready to pay an arm and leg for the instrument. Ideally, I’d like it to cost no more than $25.

If you're wanting to play blues style then you really don't have all the options it appears you do. Many of these are the same but with various minor differences.

We can put the diatonics into five different groups or quality classes just like Hohner does in their catalog:

Marine Band: This is the Marine Band (1896) along with a couple variations such as the 364, 365, and 364s; Special 20; Thunderbird (extra low); and Crossover. They're the classic and traditional. They are what most Hohner players who play professionally use.

MS System: This is user tweaking friendly intended to compete with the Lee Oskar. They have user serviceable parts and are easy to work on and customize. Blues Harp and Big River are in this group. Big River is probably the least costly of these two upper levels of harp.

Hohner brand: This is for the instruments that are not exactly the same as the others. The Golden Melody goes in here - it's not tuned the same as a standard harmonica and is intended for playing melodies and not wailing the blues. The Duece-and-a-Half is in this group too.

Standard Line: Bottom of the line cost-savers. Most are under or around $10. Blues Band, American Ace, GLH, Pocket Pal, Hot Metal, Old Standby, Official Scout, Fuego Azul, Piedmont Blues. They're for youngsters to learn on or for folks who just want a harmonica to piddle with occasionally. They work ok but you'll not be getting too great on one. They don't last as ell as a Marine Band or MS either. Might as well buy the next group - it works as well and costs much less. Most of these only come in C unless you're buying a set.

Childrens: Happy Colors is about $2 and they work. You won't be getting a lot of tone, good seals, and solid bends but it works as well as the Standard Line and it's CHEAP. They work WAY better than anything from a department or dollar store.

Now, assuming you're not after a children's instrument then that leaves the Hohner, MS, and Marine Band lines. The Hohner line are specialty instruments so then we're left with the Marine Band or MS line.

The MS is really for folks who plan to service and tweak their own harp. If that's not you then no need to spend extra for one. But, the Blues Harp is a pretty decent harp and is comparable to the MB harps for blues playing purposes.

Which leaves the Marine Band line and the two most common sellers there are the Marine Band (1896) and the Marine Band Special 20. The difference between the two is the comb material. 1896 is wood, S-20 is plastic. Some people like the sound of wood, some prefer the easy maintance of plastic. Wood swells when wet, plastic doesn't. Either way, good harps to learn on and they cost about $30 depending on where you find them.

http://hohnerusa.com/upload/links/l_00000798_HOHNER_Harmonicas_2011.pdf is the whole Hohner catalog if you're interested.

Musicians Friend has the Special 20 for about $35 and the Marine Band 1896 for the same. The Blues Harp is $2 more and a Golden Melody is $40.

The Big River, a good compromise between the "cheap" and "better" harps, is $25. Which happens to be your preferred price point. Personally I'd go the extra $10 like Miles suggests and get the Marine Band or Special 20.

Discover Harp Hohner On eBay Below:

Hohner M546433 54 64 CG Echo Harp
Hohner M546433 54 64 CG Echo Harp
$75.00
M Hohner Blues Harp Key of C Made in Germany Vintage Harmonica
M Hohner Blues Harp Key of C Made in Germany Vintage Harmonica
$8.99
Vintage M Hohner 64 Chromonica Chromonika Harmonicas Blues Harp Hugo Rauner
Vintage M Hohner 64 Chromonica Chromonika Harmonicas Blues Harp Hugo Rauner
$96.95
Vintage The Echo Harp M Hohner Harmonica C G 56 96 M 2 with Box Made in Germany
Vintage The Echo Harp M Hohner Harmonica C G 56 96 M 2 with Box Made in Germany
$19.99
HOHNER HARMONICA blues harp Key of A also Hohner Echo harp key gc
HOHNER HARMONICA blues harp Key of A also Hohner Echo harp key gc
$66.00
Hohner Vintage Echo Harp 2 sided Harmonica Germany 1940s w orig Box
Hohner Vintage Echo Harp 2 sided Harmonica Germany 1940s w orig Box
$145.00
Vintage The Echo Harp Hohner Harmonica Germany 56 96 M2 C G Double Sided W Box
Vintage The Echo Harp Hohner Harmonica Germany 56 96 M2 C G Double Sided W Box
$125.00
Rare Antique Beautiful German M Hohner ECHO HARP Harmonica 96 Holes
Rare Antique Beautiful German M Hohner ECHO HARP Harmonica 96 Holes
$54.90
Vintage Harmonica Blues Harp M Hohner Germany key of F Germany
Vintage Harmonica Blues Harp M Hohner Germany key of F Germany
$12.50
The Echo Harp Harmonica M Hohner Germany Vintage antique harp C G 54 64
The Echo Harp Harmonica M Hohner Germany Vintage antique harp C G 54 64
$79.67
The Goliath Vintage M Hohner Harmonica Old Harp Made in Germany Cool Toy Rough
The Goliath Vintage M Hohner Harmonica Old Harp Made in Germany Cool Toy Rough
$4.99
Vintage M Hohner Echo Harp Harmonica Made in Germany Rare Antique Old
Vintage M Hohner Echo Harp Harmonica Made in Germany Rare Antique Old
$4.99
Vintage Hohner Blues Harp MS Harmonica Key of G Made in Germany with Case
Vintage Hohner Blues Harp MS Harmonica Key of G Made in Germany with Case
$21.24
Vintage Hohner Blues Harp MS Harmonica Key of C Made in Germany with Case
Vintage Hohner Blues Harp MS Harmonica Key of C Made in Germany with Case
$21.24
Vintage HarmonicaHohnerThe Echo HarpKey C GPre War ExcellenceKey CHarp
Vintage HarmonicaHohnerThe Echo HarpKey C GPre War ExcellenceKey CHarp
$77.00
Vintage HarmonicaHohnerPiccoloKey Cmade by M Hohner of GermanySweet Harp
Vintage HarmonicaHohnerPiccoloKey Cmade by M Hohner of GermanySweet Harp
$32.00
Harmonica HOHNER 1896 20 Marine Band Z Harp Key of A Made in Germany 10 20 Reed
Harmonica HOHNER 1896 20 Marine Band Z Harp Key of A Made in Germany 10 20 Reed
$35.00
M Hohner Harmonica The Echo Harp 56 96 C G EXCELLENT CONDITION Made in Germany
M Hohner Harmonica The Echo Harp 56 96 C G EXCELLENT CONDITION Made in Germany
$99.00
GLH GREAT LITTLE HARP HOHNER HARMONICA GERMANY KEY OF C CLEAN IN BOX
GLH GREAT LITTLE HARP HOHNER HARMONICA GERMANY KEY OF C CLEAN IN BOX
$0.99
Hohner Harmonica The Echo Harp Bell Metal Reeds in Original Box Made in Germany
Hohner Harmonica The Echo Harp Bell Metal Reeds in Original Box Made in Germany
$34.56
Vintage M Hohner The Echo Harp Harmonica 57 120 M Keys C G in Original Box
Vintage M Hohner The Echo Harp Harmonica 57 120 M Keys C G in Original Box
$45.00
Vintage M Hohner The Echo Harp Harmonica 54 64 M 2 Keys C G in Original Box
Vintage M Hohner The Echo Harp Harmonica 54 64 M 2 Keys C G in Original Box
$35.00
VINTAGE M Hohners Harmonica VEST POCKET HARP made in Germany
VINTAGE M Hohners Harmonica VEST POCKET HARP made in Germany
$14.95
Vintage Hohner Harmonica Auto Valve Harp Made in Germany  lc
Vintage Hohner Harmonica Auto Valve Harp Made in Germany lc
$9.99
vintage HOHNER blues harp in key of C
vintage HOHNER blues harp in key of C
$5.00
The Echo Harp Harmonica by Hohner Model 57 120 C G
The Echo Harp Harmonica by Hohner Model 57 120 C G
$70.00
Lot of 4 Hohner harmonica harps lot300
Lot of 4 Hohner harmonica harps lot300
$29.95
Vintage Hohner Tremolo Concert Harp Harmonica Original Case Americas Choice
Vintage Hohner Tremolo Concert Harp Harmonica Original Case Americas Choice
$35.00
M Hohner Blues Harp Key of C Made in Germany Vintage Harmonica
M Hohner Blues Harp Key of C Made in Germany Vintage Harmonica
$0.99
Vintage Hohner The Echo Harp Harmonica In Original Box in Key A D
Vintage Hohner The Echo Harp Harmonica In Original Box in Key A D
$24.99
Vintage HarmonicaHohnerThe Echo HarpKey C GPre War ExcellenceKey CHarp
Vintage HarmonicaHohnerThe Echo HarpKey C GPre War ExcellenceKey CHarp
$49.99
Hohner 55 80 CG Echo Harp 80 Stimmen Double Sided Made in Czech Republic
Hohner 55 80 CG Echo Harp 80 Stimmen Double Sided Made in Czech Republic
$6.25


Recently Purchased Harp Hohner:


vintage hohner world renowned full concert harp harmonica germany key g, rare antique beautiful german m hohner echo harp harmonica 64 holes box, vintage hohner echo harp harmonica original box, vintage m hohner auto valve harp harmonica made in germany gr bronce, vtg hohner grand prix harmonica vest pocket harp musical instrument germany, vintage hohner great little harpharmonica origboxwith instruction 1960 , hohner big river harp harmonica key of d 59020 made in germany, 17 of 22 from a pros vtg harp collection m hohner comet 250332 harmonica, vtg hohner 10 hole blues harp harmonica key of c german made new, the echo harp m hohner made in germany cg double sided vintage harmonica, 2 vintage hohner harmonicas blues harp amp; old standard wow, m hohner blues harp key of c made in germany vintage harmonica 50 yrs old, vintage hohner harmonica auto valve harp made in germany lc, echo harp 5696 cg m hohner, vintage hohner the echo harp harmonica, vintage mhohner glh great little harp harmonica german harmonica, hohner vintage m hohner blues harp key of g harmonica very nice condition, vintage harmonica hohner the echo harp key cg pre war, the goliath vintage m hohner harmonica old harp made in germany cool toy rough , vintage m hohner echo harp harmonica made in germany rare antique old, vtg m hohner 2 sided echo harp double sided harmonica cg boxed nice germany, the echo harp harmonica m hohner germany vintage antique harp cg 5464, vintage harmonica hhohner blues harp with holder made germany bvlgari bulgari, vintage the echo harp hohner harmonica germany 5696 m2 cg double sided wbox, vintage hohner tremolo concert harp harmonica original case americas choice, vintage hohner vest pocket harp german harmonica 21420 m 2 key of f, vintage m hohner autovalveharp organ tone harmonica germany, hohner the echo harp harmonica c amp; g double sided 64 hole orig box 21955, hohner 5580 cg echo harp 80 stimmen double sided made in czech republic, vintage harmonicahohnerthe echo harpkey cgpre war excellencekey charp, vintage hohner the echo harp harmonica in original box in key ad, m hohner blues harp key of c made in germany vintage harmonica, very nice vtg m hohner the echo harp harmonica cg double sided germany w box, lot of 4 hohner harmonica harps lot300, the echo harp harmonica by hohner model 57120 cg , vintage hohner blues harp in key of c, vintage m hohners harmonica vest pocket harp made in germany, vintage the echo harp m hohner harmonica cg 5696 m 2 with box made in germany, vintage m hohner the echo harp harmonica 5464 m 2 keys cg in original box, vintage m hohner the echo harp harmonica 57120 m keys cg in original box, nice m hohner blues harp made in germany with case used, nice m hohner blues harp made in germany with case amp; original instructions used, vintage m hohner 64 chromonica chromonika harmonicas blues harp hugo rauner, german mhohner echo harp harmonica key 5696 cg 96 stimmen, hohner 364g marine band 12 harp key of g, glh great little harp hohner harmonica germany key of c clean in box, m hohner harmonica the echo harp 5696 cg excellent condition made in germany, excellent vintage m hohner blues harp with original case, vintage hohner harmonica blues harp ms made in germany bb, hohner m546433 5464 cg echo harp, vintage hohner blues harp in key of g with case, vintage mouth organ mhohner blues harp b made in germany w leather case, m hohner autovalve harpmodel 10540, hohner harmonica the echo harp bell metal reeds in original box made in germany



Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.