The Saxophone, or Sax for short, is a woodwind instrument created by Aldophe Sax. It has the mouthpiece of a clarinet, the fingerwork of an oboe, and a brass bell. It is made almost all out of metal, with the exception of the reed, which is either bamboo wood, or polymer, as well as a cork on the neck joint.

There are seven different types of saxophone (in order from highest to lowest):

  • Sopranino Sax (An Eb instrument)
  • Soprano Sax (A Bb instrument)

    A Soprano Saxophone

  • Alto Sax (An Eb instrument)
    Alto-saxophone 1 lg

    An Alto Saxophone

  • Tenor Sax (A Bb instrument)
    Gold Plated Tenor Saxophone TS-280G

    A Tenor Saxophone

  • Baritone Sax (An Eb instrument)

    A Baritone Saxophone

  • Bass Sax (A Bb instrument)
  • Contrabass Sax (An Eb instrument)
  • Subcontrabass Sax (A Bb instrument)

Range of an Alto Saxophone: Low Bb to High F#. Sometimes, an advanced player can get out a low A, and a high G.

Parts of the Saxophone

The Saxophones have three main parts that are put together to form the instrument. Those are the Mouthpiece (which has the reed and the ligature), the neck, and the body of the saxophone (which has the keys, octave key, and bell).

The Octave Key

In order for the instruments to get some notes out, they need the octave key, located on the body of the instrument. The octave key on an Alto Saxophone leads to the neck, where a lever lifts up, therefore making the instrument go up an octave. It only raises when the note A and the octave key and up is played.


For the saxophones to play, they need reeds. Reeds can be wooden or plastic. There are many different types of reeds made by different companies, including Rico and Van Deuran.

Listen to the Instruments

Go to these links to listen to all the different types of instruments!

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