Backun vs. Buffet: Which is the better brand for clarinets?

Would you like to add a clarinet to your collection of musical instruments? If yes, you should buy one from a good brand. Find out which brand is better between Backun and Buffet.

Before I bought a clarinet, I spent a lot of time playing different models. I used to rent them from a music store near my home at an affordable price. This enabled me to compare how different models sounded before I could invest in one. I finally discovered the model that I enjoyed the most and decided to buy it.

If you are torn between brands like Backun and Buffet, this is for you. I will discuss the differences between these two brands to help you choose a suitable one. To make this comparison easier, I will compare the Backun Beta clarinet versus the Buffet R13. Enjoy!

What are the differences between Backun and Buffet clarinets?

Product Backun Beta Bb Buffet R13
Barrel 65 mm 66 mm
Body Unstained grenadilla wood Unstained grenadilla wood
Keys Silver/ Nickel Nickel
Thumb rest Adjustable Adjustable
Case Hard shell case Deluxe wood shell
Mouthpiece Included Not included
Best for Intermediate Professionals
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Backun vs. Buffet: How do they compare?


Though both brands use Grenadilla wood to make these clarinets, they are marketed toward different customers. The Backun Beta clarinet is ideal for intermediates looking to invest in their first wooden clarinet. On the other hand, the Buffet R13 is ideal for professional players. Both soloists and teachers choose this model.

Therefore, the Buffet brand is better since it is more advanced compared to Backun.

Barrel length

You will also notice a slight difference in the barrel length of these clarinets. While Backun Beta comes with a 65mm beta stock barrel, Buffet R13 has a 66 mm barrel.

Though 65 mm is the standard barrel length, the Buffet brand is better since it has a longer barrel.


Backun uses nickel-plating or silver in its keywork. On the other hand, Buffet uses nickel plating in the R13 model. Though the nickel plating enhances the sound of the Buffet clarinet, Backun offers more flexibility. It allows you to choose the clarinet with the keywork you prefer.

The Backun brand is better since it is more flexible than Buffet when it comes to the keywork.


Though both clarinets include many accessories, Buffet does not include a mouthpiece. It gives professionals the freedom to choose the mouthpiece they prefer to create the best sound. This, however, means that you have to save some extra funds to buy this helpful piece separately.

On the other hand, Backun includes all the accessories you need to start playing it out of the box. A mouthpiece forms part of the package.

Backun is better than Buffet since it comes with a mouthpiece.


Apart from the features, you will also notice a significant difference in the cost of these clarinets. The Backun brand is cheaper than the Buffet brand. Despite this, most customers reveal that Buffet is a better quality brand and creates high-performing models such as the R13.

Backun wins in this category since it is more pocket-friendly compared to Buffet.

Backun vs. Buffet – A comparison overview

Backun review

If you are an intermediate student in need of a clarinet that can suit your playing style, you can get one from Backun. The Backun beta is a wooden clarinet that has an elegant appearance.

It is made from an unstained grenadilla wood body that is less prone to cracking than other forms of wood. Ensure you take care of this clarinet well by lubricating it using cork grease and polishing it with a cloth regularly.

It uses the same wood that most professional clarinets come in. Apart from the body, this clarinet also comes with a grenadilla bell and barrel. The material leads to a full and flexible tone. It also features silver-plated keys, which feel good in your hands. You can also choose the clarinet with nickel-plated keys if you want a shinier appearance.

The brand also focuses on comfort since it equips it with an adjustable thumb rest and a neck strap ring. Using it with a neck strap can help distribute the weight evenly to reduce fatigue during long playing sessions.

Backun beta clarinet also features black leather pads that are water-resistant. The manufacturer equips it with useful accessories to help you save some cash. It includes a ligature, mouthpiece, cap, swab, and cork grease. This musical instrument also comes with a case that protects the clarinet and makes it easy to move around.


  • Comfortable blowing resistance
  • Delivers rich tone
  • Includes useful accessories
  • Plays out of the box
  • It is affordable


  • It is not easy to maintain


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Buffet overview

Buffet is famous for manufacturing Boehm clarinets. One of the popular models that musicians choose from this brand is the R13 clarinet. This is an excellent clarinet that is suitable for professionals. It is made with grenadilla wood, a quality material that leads to an even tone. Since this clarinet is equipped with a polycylindrical bore, it delivers a full sound.

The elegant appearance of this clarinet also captivates many. The manufacturers polish the surface and let the wood keep its original color. They cover the tenons and edges with metal rings to add great contrast to the body and prevent the risk of cracking. It also comes with nickel-plated keys and undercut tone holes.

Like the Backun model, this clarinet also comes with an adjustable thumb rest to give you a more comfortable playing experience. It also has a certain degree of resistance in blowing. This clarinet comes with a sturdy and well-padded case and an easy-blowing metal ligature. The ligature also enhances the sound quality of this clarinet since it enables the reed to remain centered when playing high notes.

The package also includes a protective cap. Most customers are also impressed with the wood shell case that this clarinet comes with. It features a plush interior and can protect the clarinet well. Though this clarinet can cost you more, you can depend on it to improve your playing performance for a long time.


  • Responsive key action
  • Delivers a focused and rich tone
  • Solid construction
  • Includes a high-quality case
  • Elegant look


  • It does not come with a mouthpiece
  • High cost


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Verdict: So, which is better? Backun or Buffet

After comparing some of the models from both brands, I discovered that Buffet is a better brand than Backun. It is more consistent, delivers an even tone and rich sound, and has a sturdy case. Though Backun is cheaper, Buffet receives lots of positive reviews from customers who reveal that it is of superior quality compared to Backun. I, therefore, choose Buffet as the clear winner.


Does Backun offer a warranty for its models?

Yes. This brand offers a two-year warranty for its clarinets. It can prevent you from spending more on repairs if you get a defective instrument. You may also enjoy the 14-day trial period offered.

Why is Buffet a famous brand when it comes to clarinets?

It is famous for creating great-sounding clarinets that offer precision and stability. The manufacturer also uses high-quality materials to create durable clarinets.

Charlotte Moore is a Clarinetist by profession and has over time offered lessons on how to play the clarinet among other musical instruments. And while a majority of clarinet players are well versed with the process of settling with a good clarinet among other accompanying features. There is little information about clarinets. The reason why Charlotte prepared comprehensive experts touching on the various facets of the clarinet. The consolidated information will offer more insight on everything clarinets including the best stand to use, and the best plastic clarinet that you can invest in, among other information. Charlotte Moore is a devoted mother of two and a professional clarinet player.

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