SCHWENK & SEGGELKE Klarinettenbau | Klarinetten mit deutscher Griffweise, Modell 2000

Clarinet Model 2000

Clarinets with German fingering

Not solely in Germany, but all over the world, our instruments with German fingering have been gaining currency. This type of fingering goes back to the initial tone hole positioning of historical clarinets, which means that a G-major scale on a Modell 2000 is played without cross fingerings. Since the late 19th century, almost all clarinets with German fingering include advanced mechanisms with widely open halftone holes, thereby allowing the chromatic scale to sound evenly.

Since then, there have been two bore concepts in Germany: Based on the Saxonian teachings, instruments with a narrow bore and slightly smaller tone hole diameters have developed. In Central Germany, as well as in today’s Czech Republic/Bohemia, clarinets with a much larger bore and large tone holes were made around the same time.

These two variants differ in air resistance and should therefore be played with different reeds, as well as mouthpieces. Instruments with a narrower bore have a higher air resistance and are played more easily with an open reed-mouthpiece-combination. However, instruments with a larger bore have a lower air resistance and can therefore be played with a reed-mouthpiece-combination with a higher air resistance.

Our Viennese model’s inner bore is equivalent to our wide bore, the corpus dimensions differ, however. It contains several mechanical options which are based on the design of the instruments built and used in Vienna since the 1950s. Therefore, the selectable mechanic features are limited. Standardly, it comes with an additional key on the upper joint to balance the intonation of E/b''.

The mouthpiece does not only influence the instrument’s air resistance, but also its intonation. We would like to advise you to choose mouthpieces with a revised bore, to go with your instrument. If you are interested in a mouthpiece, professionally revised by our team, please click here.

An instrument’s quality isn’t defined by its number of keys. Its price, however, is. Therefore, we have come up with a configuration tool which you can use to create an instrument with your needs and your liquidity in mind that will later on be handcrafted by our talented team according to your wishes.

Hereafter, we explain some of the components we have developed in-house:

  • The B and C sharp long keys, played by the left pinkie, are positioned on separate axes, therefore requiring tubes twice as long as commonly used. The tone holes are being indirectly controlled by longitudinally positioned keycups, thereby creating a larger opening for the tone hole, while simultaneously limiting the key’s free movement for the actioning finger.
  • Unlike other designs, all surface buttons in the pinkie’s range are rotated upwards by several degrees, thereby achieving a relaxed posture for the left hand.
  • The A-key on the upper joint is connected to the A flat-key’s little lever. Thereby the tone hole remains small while still creating a better resonance ratio, due to the open A flat-tone hole. This simplifies switching between the two tones, as well as playing a halftone trill (using the right hand to play the A flat-key via the second trill key).

Optional components:

  • Physical core element is the register key with an additional open b flat-resonance key.
  • Instead of the thumbhole, we install a thumb key which, when resting, reveals a b flat-resonance key with a simultaneously open register key. As long as the thumb key remains closed the b flat resonance key does the same. This mechanism allows for the sleeve in the register tone hole to be drilled narrowly, without having to take the b flat into consideration. The additional open resonance hole balances b flat’s intonation.
  • The A/e tonehole on the lower joint (ring finger of the right hand) is being split and a resonance hole on the ring key added. Thereby the open resonance hole remains small enough for a low A and a sufficiently high e’’.
  • Since the mid-1990s, we have been using quartz resonance pads developed by the company Clarissono which are distinguished both by their longevity, their great resonance properties, as well as being rather silent in use.

When using our configurator, you are able to choose from three different types of wood. (For more detailed information on the types of wood we use for our clarinets, please click here).

For more information on the manufacturing process of our instruments, please click here.

The historical clarinet being a largely diatonically constructed instrument, the vast variety of clarinets we know today came to be. On historical clarinets, keys with up to about three accidentials could be played quite well. Beyond that, sound, intonation and technical flexibility were limited which made the building of differently tuned instruments necessary.

Over time it showed that even with a chromatic design, the characteristic sound an instrument has due to its size, remains the same.

In musical scores during the 19th and 20th century, a much larger number of tunes was being used than today (C and D clarinet). We would like to revive this historical playing experience and implement it in our daily work to evolve the richness of tonal colours in today’s music.

Konfigurator Modell 2000

Configurator model 2000

Here you are able to put together your desired instrument.

Get started!

Arthur Adams: Twilight Chimes

From the album Clarimonia Twilight.
Further information on the recording you can find here

Nino Rota, Sonate (1st movement, excerpt)

From the album Sonatas with Heiner Schindler.
Further information on the recording you can find here

Jan Sobeck, Trio F-Dur (1st movement, excerpt)

From the album Trio Pleyel.
Further information on the recording you can find here


You have further questions or special demands?
Don't hesitate to contact us!