I do not even trust reviews by top players. I know too many with a flavor of the month.
It would be cool if we had standard things to try and rate:
- Octave intonation
- how well it speaks at ppp in the low, medium and upper register
- how well we hear ourselves indoors
- how well we hear ourselves “outdoors”
- pitch stability during a crescendo
- pitch stability with a decrescendo
- Proportion of core to halo (a lot of thought must go into this test)
- relative loudness where the sound becomes “brilliant”
- Stability of horn playability with various mouthpieces
- Do certain notes “pop out”?
retest results after 3 months
Feel free to add additional tests. This basically outlines my procedure to buy a new trumpet. All my students learn this and we use it when buying the “second” instrument.