Friday, October 28, 2011

Rico Jazz Select Filed Revisited

Sometime last year I reviewed Rico Jazz Select Reeds, and I've recently tried the Filed version again so I wanted to post an update. I accidentally purchased two boxes at the store, and before I realized my mistake I had opened the box! Disappointed I had made such a blatant mistake I slapped one on anyways, and there was something alluring about the sound. I've practiced with them this week, and decided to re-review them this week.

Here is a quick list of the highlights:
  • Clear & balanced sound
  • Sufficient punch or edge created by the reed
  • Fairly easy to keep a clear sound even after embouchure fatigue
This combination creates a reed that is malleable and easily shaped by the player, as opposed to reed that shaped the player's sound for him or her. The RJS filed reeds are much like a mouthpiece with a medium baffle that sometimes offers a wider sound palette than one with a high baffle.

As far as consistency goes, if you expect the same you get from most brands of reeds you'll be happy. Here are a couple clips from a recent playtest.


  1. But is your current choice still the orange box reeds or have you switched to these now? I've been using Van Doren Javas since they were introduced but I think I'm in between strengths right now and I've been debating trying the RJS as I might be able to get a close to the middle. Anyway just wondering.

  2. I switched from Rico Orange to RJS Unfiled a while ago. Now I'm thinking of switching to the Filed. In my experience it's hard to find that in between reed strength. I had a similar experience searching for that right strength, and I finally resolved it with some embouchure changes. Now I'm more flexible in terms of what reed strength I am comfortable with.

  3. Oh okay I went back through your equipment reviews and just saw the one about the orange box reeds...must have bypassed the update. Yeah I feel like I can play on either the Java 3 or 3.5 (harder side of one softer side of the other) but the 3's seemed to go south a lot quicker than I wanted them to. I've been back on 3.5 for a month or so because I feel like I can work with them and play in the ones that are too hard so more reeds are potentially's tough though because sometimes playing in a harder reed ends up with it feeling stuffy...oh well, enough stream of consciousness....except to say that I've always gravitated towards unfiled because I think I've noticed that filed reeds don't last as long for me...but who knows?

  4. In my experience a good reed last around a week or even a little less.