GUO New Voice Flute and Grenaditte Piccolo Review

Disclaimer:
The Guo New Voice Flute and Guo Grenaditte Piccolo were purchased by the reviewers with their own money. No kickback or advertising money has been given to FluteLifeBlog for the promotion of the instruments. All feedback is given, honestly, from the writers, and all opinions are without incentive for a review.

Visit www.gflute.com for more information about these instruments or for a list of distributors and authorized repair specialists.

GUO New Voice Flute


Flute - Assembled : top half_watermarked Flute - Thumb Key_watermarked Flute - Assembled : top half_watermarked Flute - Assembled: Bottom half_watermarked Flute - Case Open 2_watermarked Flute - Case Open_watermarked Flute - Case_watermarked Flute - Empty Case_watermarked Flute - Foot Joint : Body_watermarked_watermarked2 Flute - Full : EDITED_watermarked Flute - Full assembled on case_watermarked Flute - Head joint:Body_watermarked Flute - Inline G Key_watermarked Flute - Lip_watermarked Flute - New Voice Logo : Markings_watermarked_watermarked2 Flute - Pads_watermarked

The Good:
The FluteLifeBlog Studio has been giving the Guo New Voice flute and Grenaditte piccolo a test drive and we were delighted by what we have experienced.

The New Voice flute is amazingly lightweight and comfortable to hold. The slightly textured body is easy to grasp and rests very comfortably in the hands, perhaps even offering a bit of traction if you tend toward damp hands. The flute speaks easily with a bright yet mellow sound that is an interesting hybrid of a wood and metal sound. The stronger and more flexible your embouchure, the more control and variety you will have. Although it is only available with an in-line G and open holes, it does come with comfortable plugs for those who prefer a closed-hole instrument. The slightly larger left hand C key may come as a relief to players with larger hands or longer fingers. The New Voice is available in a nice choice of neutral colors (most of which can be mistaken for wood when viewed from a distance), all with black composite keywork. Intonation seems stable and it is a happy surprise that multi-phonics, harmonics and some other extended techniques are also possible on the instrument.

The Bad:
The keys are fitted with sponge pads that seem to require a slightly heavier touch to ensure a complete seal. Those accustomed to playing with a lighter touch may find the “squishiness” a little odd at first; however, adjustment time is relatively short. The overall action seemed a bit uneven in the most virtuosic passages and runs we tested, however, it is perfectly adequate for day to day playing and teaching.

Flutists preferring A-440 might be disappointed to find that the New Voice is available only at A-442. It is delivered with only a straight head and a B-foot with gizmo, but the D-sharp roller, Split-E, and C-sharp trill options are not available.

It is worth noting that instrument repair professionals may or may not be hesitant to work on the Guo instruments due simply to unfamiliarity with these fairly new instruments, but we assume that your own professional and trusted repair specialist can handle routine adjustments. We recommend seeking out one of the certified Guo Grenaditte repair folk scattered around the country or a certified Guo distributor for advice on more serious repairs. Although it does not appear to be updated frequently, a list of certified repair specialists and distributors around the world is available at http://www.gflute.com

Overall:
We offered a few nearby professional flutists the opportunity to spend a short time with the instrument. Each one was immediately surprised at the high quality of tone they could achieve although it was also clear that the tone could not be forced. While some were amazed that they were playing a plastic flute others thought it sounded like one. The consensus, however, is that the Guo New Voice flute is good instrument, perfect for travel as well as outdoor performances when you do not want to use your silver, gold or wooden flute due to location or conditions. Not to be limited to only outdoor gigs or travel, the New Voice offers a blendable projecting tone suitable for orchestral, chamber, jazz, or solo playing. The instrument arrives in a well-padded insured box and includes a sturdy aluminum case, padded case cover with a zip pocket and shoulder strap, cleaning cloth, cleaning rod, plugs, and other care instructions.

Best use case scenario:
The remarkable lightweight of the Guo makes it an option for those with hand, arm or shoulder problems caused by the weight of a metal flute. (Please note: problems caused by the weight of a flute may be only a small part of larger problems caused by overuse or the positions used to play the flute. Seek the advice of a body mapping or medical professional.)

  • Perfect for outdoor performances.
  • Excellent lightweight travel instrument.
  • Affordable back-up instrument.
  • Great for leaving out on a peg for grabbing random moments of practice.
  • Outstanding option for those with metal allergies.

The Guo New Voice is not going to replace my silver professional instrument, but it is a nice addition to the studio and offers some pleasing and interesting flexibility and options.

Where can you get it?
Flute World
eBay (We had success with Robert69kx)
US Resellers

We like it! –Euterpe’s Piccolo

GUO Grenaditte Piccolo

Picc - Assembled in case_watermarked Picc - Case_watermarked_watermarked2 Picc - Keys :upper_watermarked_watermarked2 Picc - Keys_watermarked Picc - Lip_watermarked Picc - Markings_watermarked_watermarked2 Picc - Pads 2_watermarked_watermarked2 Picc - Pads 3_watermarked_watermarked2 PIcc - Pads_watermarked_watermarked2 Picc Markings 2_watermarked_watermarked2

The Good:
The Guo Grenaditte Piccolo is extremely light and durable. The composite material, made of plastic and fiberglass, is very very light, to the point it is alarming at first. The low register speaks easily, and the sound is much closer to that of Wood than plastic piccolos. The Grenaditte Piccolo also offers up a high G# Facilitator, and Split E Mechanism. Both of these offer a high register that plays with ease. The piccolo has great control and response, comparable to that of a much higher end piccolo, and at a cost much lower. The Grenaditte Piccolo is ideal for the player who does both indoor and outdoor performances, without the need for separate instruments. The pads offer extreme durability, and the case allows for quick pack up and assembly, because it is stored in the case put together. Depending on the swab that you use, you may not even have to take it apart to clean it. The pads, being made of a foam material, can handle humidity without worry of swelling. Although you could most likely get them wet, I’d still try to avoid it if at all possible. These features make the flute very good for outdoor use, and marching band. The intonation of the instrument (at A = 442 Hz) is extremely easy to play in tune and to tune to an ensemble. The instrument is also very in tune to itself, causing harmonics and other extended techniques on the piccolo in tune. I was amazed with the ease of intonation on the instrument, as it is often the biggest drawback of wood piccolos, which require a warm up period prior to being in tune. The Guo Grenaditte is also very affordable at $1350 at the standard MSRP. However, if you look online, you are able to find them cheaper either used or new from specific sellers who have partnered with Guo to bring them to you at a lower price.

The Bad:
The Guo Grenaditte Piccolo doesn’t have that much wrong with it, but to those who are loyal to the sound of a wood instrument you may be disappointed. Although the sound is a combination of characteristics from metal and wood, it doesn’t have qualities of one more than the other. The sound is very bright (like metal) but is also more round (like wood). This actually gives extreme flexibility in tone if you are able to make the right changes to achieve the sound you want. The mechanism is a little ‘soft’ and doesn’t really offer the same type of feedback compared to metal keys, but it is very comfortable. It took only a few days of adjustment to play standard rep material with ease. The case only offers one way to store it, meaning that you can only keep it assembled in the case. This isn’t a deal breaker, and actually offers up ease to use when pulling out the instrument, but if you like to take your piccolo apart after every time you play it, it may seem odd to put it back together after cleaning it to put it in the case.

Overall:
The Guo Grenaditte Piccolo offers up an intermediate / semi-professional level instrument at a very affordable cost. It is great for those who do both inside and outside performance because of the tone quality and instrument durability. The intonation is great, and easily plays in tune with an ensemble. As an all black piccolo, it stands out in a crowd, and also looks very elegant from afar. It is very light, and offers clear tones within the range of the instrument. Surprisingly, the low register speaks very well. The mechanism moves easily, and adjustment time is rather short compared to other instruments.

Best use case scenario:

The Guo Grenaditte Piccolo is ideal for High School Students or College Students who are doing both concert music and marching music. The piccolo offers sound and durability, while still being attractive, and fun to play. The weight of the instrument also means less fatigue when playing, but with piccolo this often isn’t a huge issue.

  • Perfect for outdoor performances.
  • Excellent lightweight travel instrument. Case to performance time is low because the instrument is already assembled in the case and doesn’t require warm up time prior to playing.
  • Great for leaving out on a peg for grabbing random moments of practicing.
  • Clean and stable tone that can be easily achieved in concert settings.
  • Outstanding option for those with metal allergies.

We like it! –The Flute Elf

Where can you get it?
Flute World
eBay (We had success with Robert69kx)
US Resellers

Wrap up:
We are very pleased with the instruments, and think they offer a wide range of choice, and performance venues. The New Voice flute is often used in jazz settings, and great for outdoor performances. The Guo Grenaditte Piccolo is a great intermediate piccolo that does well in both indoor and outdoor settings. If you are accustomed to the sound of playing on a wood piccolo, the Grenaditte Piccolo may not be for you, but it offers the durability that you can’t get in a wood piccolo if you are to do outside performances. Both instruments are reasonably priced (New Voice Flute for $1250 and the Grenaditte Piccolo for $1250) and even cheaper if you get in from other sources.

-The Flute Elf & -Euterpe’s Piccolo

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One Response to GUO New Voice Flute and Grenaditte Piccolo Review

  1. Pingback: Favorite blog posts, July 2013 | Bret Pimentel, woodwinds

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