Best Clarinet Mouthpieces

Your clarinet will come with a standard mouthpiece popularly known as the stock. However, most of these tend to be low quality and this affects the kind of sound been produced. If you desire to play professional, it is imperative you invest in some high-quality mouthpiece. This will make a significant change in the sound quality and ease of playing.

When you realize that, the mouthpiece your clarinet came in is not delivering the sound you desire it is time to search for a mouthpiece. The market is littered with mouthpieces and finding the right one is not that straightforward. However, we have done the groundwork for you to present the Best Clarinet Mouthpieces.

Best Clarinet Mouthpieces – Comparison Chart

ModelWeight Dimensions Availability
D’Addario Reserve Bb Clarinet Mouthpiece XO0.05 pounds4 x 1.2 x 4”Check Price
Vandoren CM1405 BD5 Series 131.6 ounces1.75 x 1.75 x 6”Check Price
Yamaha 4C Clarinet mouthpiece1.55 ounces5.16 x 1.85 x 1.73”Check Price
Glory Clarinet2.08 ounces4.92 x 1.81 x 1.77”Check Price
Vandoren CM3178 M152 ounces1.75 x 6 x 1.75”Check Price
Selmer Clarinet mouthpiece0.64 ounces2.3 x 1.5 x 4.7”Check Price
J&D Hite H111 Premiere Bb clarinet1.41 ounces4.5 x 2.25 x 1.25”Check Price
Vandoren CM4158 M130.8 ounces2 x 2 x 6”Check Price

Reviews of the Best Clarinet Mouthpieces

D’Addario Reserve Bb Clarinet Mouthpiece XO – Best precision milling mouthpiece

The D’Addario benefits from precision milling to deliver an outstanding mouthpiece that is suitable for a variety of clarinets. The piece has been crafted with a proprietary rubber that gives it evenness and tonal beauty. D’Addario took its time to craft this piece as it deployed some of its top engineers and craftsmen to ensure the design is just right.

Clarinets from the 1920s era have inspired the Reserve mouthpiece. This means you have a mix of modern and vintage. The distinguishing feature for the reserve is that it is milled rather than molded. This has the advantage of eliminating the need to test different mouthpieces to find the right one. This has resulted in the mouthpieces that are a level above the rest. The D’Addario reserve produces an even intonation with bright sounds. It is quite ideal for jazz playing.

What we liked:

  • Precision milling ensures consistency
  • Produces an even tone
  • High quality mouthpiece
  • Combines vintage and modern designs

What we did not like:

  • A bit expensive for student clarinet


View price here


Vandoren CM1405 BD5 Series 13 – Best ebonite clarinet

The CM1405 is made from vulcanized rubber called ebonite. This makes it more appealing than plastic while also allowing it to offer a more focused sound. The material also makes the Vandoren quite durable as it is hard wearing. The mouthpiece is preferred by classical players due to their ability to create rich sounds while blowing air freely. Beginners and professionals can also use the piece.

What we liked:

  • Ideal for both beginners, and professionals
  • Amazing clarity depth and pressure
  • Made from durable ebonite material
  • Flawless intonation, performance and sound

What we did not like:

  • Limited versions


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Yamaha 4C Clarinet mouthpiece – Best versatile mouthpiece

This is Yamaha’s official standard mouthpiece that is found in most of their clarinets both intermediate and professional. The mouthpiece has been developed by Yamaha professionals which means the quality of the piece is good.

The Yamaha 4C is made from durable and safe phenol resin plastic. This also makes it easy to maintain. The mouthpiece has being crafted in Yamaha’s start of the art manufacturing plants so you are double assured of its quality. The mouthpiece will fit any brand of clarinets and this makes it quite versatile. This is the piece most students start with as they learn how to play. The mouthpiece has a medium tip opening and is medium facing.

Some players may despise the Yamaha 4C due to its low price point but you will amazed by the sounds produced. The sound is consistent which is exactly what a beginner player wants.

What we liked:

  • Affordable mouthpiece
  • Crafted from Yamaha state of the art manufacturing plants
  • Offers you consistent sound
  • Made from durable resin

What we did not like:

  • Easily misunderstood for producing inferior sounds


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Glory Clarinet– Best mouthpiece with ligature

The Glory mouthpiece comes with its own set of brass ligature, plastic cover and one reed. This makes the piece an excellent companion for students and beginners. The mouthpiece is available in black color and made to be long lasting.

The glory is made from plastic and this makes it quite affordable. It comes with an extra mouthpiece for those who may have multiple clarinets.

What we liked:

  • Comes with multiple accessories
  • Ideal for students and beginners
  • Comes with ligature
  • Made from durable plastic

What we did not like:

  • Some doubts on its quality


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Vandoren CM3178 M15 – Best for higher registers

The Vandoren gives you the ability to articulate a colorful set of sounds. It is long facing with a tip opening of 103.5 (1/100mm). The mouthpiece works with Vandoren #3.5 to #5 reeds. The Vandoren mouthpiece comes is made from the companies tried and tested vulcanized rubber which gives it a more orthodox shape than the BD5 series. With its smaller opening tip the mouthpiece is more suitable for articulation of sound by players.

The mouthpiece will help beginners to learn more about resistance when blowing over the reed. It also helps them avoid the squeaks that clarinets produce. As you progress with it you should be able to play higher registers. The mouthpiece is easy to play for beginners while intermediate players have on their disposal a full spectrum of warm and colorful sounds.

What we liked:

  • Made from tried and tested vulcanized rubber
  • Smaller tip opening results in better sound articulation for players
  • Helps students on how to handle resistance
  • Easy to play
  • Aid in playing higher registers

What we did not like:

  • High price point


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Selmer Clarinet mouthpiece – Best mouthpiece for students and beginners

The Selmer is a plastic mouthpiece that is designed for Bb clarinets. It comes with tenon cork around the joints and is ideal for promoting good tone and easy blowing. The Selmer is hard wearing and durable hence making it ideal for use by students and beginners. It is sold under the brand name Sonata which is a company known for producing some high-quality woodwind instruments. The brand mainly focuses on producing clarinets for use by students and beginners.

The Selmer mouthpiece offers you balanced response with an accurate pitch and focused tone. Music educators around the world have recommended this particular mouthpiece. The mouthpiece is medium facing and is made from plastic which makes it quite durable.

What we liked:

  • Highly recommended by music educators
  • Helps promote good blowing
  • Hard wearing and durable
  • Made from high quality materials

What we did not like:

  • Not that versatile as it is ideal for Bb clarinets


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J&D Hite H111 Premiere Bb clarinet – Best hard rubber mouthpiece

The J&D is made from hard rubber and this makes it quite durable. The mouthpiece is ideal for those who desire to upgrade their mouthpiece from the standard one offered with the clarinet. The mouthpiece is recommended for students as it plays easier than others in the market.

The J&D comes with a protective cover to keep your mouthpiece protected while moving. The hard rubber construction makes the mouthpiece to be long lasting and it also brings down the price for the mouthpiece. This makes it affordable for many student clarinetists. The mouthpiece produces some amazing sounds with clarity in tones.

What we liked:

  • Produces great sounds
  • Comes with an excellent protective cover
  • Sturdy construction
  • Affordable

What we did not like:

  • Not versatile


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Vandoren CM4158 M13 – Best for playing upper register sounds

The Vandoren is a great mouthpiece for playing the upper register sounds. The mouthpiece has a tip opening of 102 (1/100mm). It is also medium facing and works best for Vandoren reeds #3.5-#5. The Vandoren possess a beak profile of 88 and is slightly more open than the M13 mouthpieces.

The Vandoren has being crafted using vulcanized rubber which makes it quite durable. It is easy to blow and this offers you more relaxed blowing. You can play it for long hours with little stress. The piece is recommended for play by symphonic and chamber music plays. It also works with harder reels and produces a pure sound ideal for beginners. The rich and centered sound from this clarinet makes it ideal for various experience levels.

What we liked:

  • Works well with harder reels
  • Rich and centered sounds
  • Affordable
  • Made from vulcanized rubber

What we liked:

  • Suitable for particular reeds


View price here


Buying Guide for Best Clarinet Mouthpieces

The mouthpiece is integral to you mastering the art of clarinet playing. Most of the clarinets will come with a standard mouthpiece, which you can change as you become more proficient with the instrument. Replacing the mouthpiece is something you will see most professional clarinetists doing as it helps them get the right tone with their instrument. However, choosing the right one is not that straightforward. Here are some key factors to consider before purchasing a clarinet.


This is a key factor as it greatly influences the clarinet tone. Like the rest of the clarinet body, plastic mouthpieces tend to be the most common due to their affordability and ease of use. The sound from a plastic mouthpiece is excellent and can help beginners find their way around the clarinet.

While a decent plastic mouthpiece is ideal for a beginner the sound quality still leaves a lot to be desired. As you progress in your musical career you may opt for other materials like crystal or hard rubber. Hard rubber is mainly used in clarinets due to its affordability and durability. It produces a round tone with average projection abilities. If you are torn in between rubber and plastic go with hard rubber.

Professionals prefer Crystal mouthpieces because they allow for the best sound projection. The tone is bright and this makes a great option for upper level musicians. The downside is that crystal mouthpieces tend to be very fragile hence you need to be extra careful using them. Wood is another material that is used for mouthpieces but the sound quality tends to be unstable. The projection of sound is also difficult hence making them least used.


Once you purchase your mouthpiece you may also need to change your ligature as it affects the sound quality of the clarinet. Metal ligatures are preferred due to their durability and shiny appearance. However, you still can go for the leather and dark rubber ones. While purchasing the ligature you can also go for the cap which protects your mouthpiece when not in use.

Open/closed tip

The mouthpiece tip can either be open or closed. It is a vital piece to the clarinet as it affects the tone quality. If the tip is open then expect it to produce a louder tone while if it is closed it produces a more darker tone.

Baffle and tip rail

These pieces are located at the point where the reed seals with the mouthpiece during vibration. What you should be on the lookout for is the shape of the baffle as it does have a direct effect on the darkness of the sounds and its brightness. As the baffle moves closer to the reed the sound produced becomes brighter. In the market you will be offered large and small baffles.


The side rails are located on the walls of the mouthpiece and affect the tone and volume of the clarinet. When the chamber is narrow it produced a more focused tone while those mouthpieces with larger chambers give you bigger tone.


You also need to consider the durability of the mouthpiece as this determines the kind of care required for it. Plastic and hard rubber mouthpieces tend to be most durable with little maintenance needed. The most fragile of mouthpieces are those made from crystal and wood. The pieces are fragile even though you do have a case. To store them well you may need to place them in a mouthpiece bag which is designed to be extra soft for the pieces. Pieces made from crystal and wood tend to be found in intermediate and professional clarinets.

Sound projection

The ligature will influence the kind of sounds produced by your clarinet. This means you have to be extra careful in identifying the right one for your mouthpiece. Some of the mouthpieces offered in the market will come with a ligature while others will not. Ligatures are made from a variety of materials like metal, rubber and leather. The material composition of the ligature can have a direct effect on the sound quality hence it is important to go for the best quality. The most common type of ligature is the metallic ones. This tend to help the most with sound projection hence there preference by many clarinetists. Pricier ligatures are gold plated for added aesthetics. The rubber ligatures have increased in popularity as they are capable of producing better sound quality as they help in airflow to the clarinet. They are also less susceptible to damage unlike the metal clarinets.

The type of reed you go for will also influence the kind of sound you get. For a student clarinetist you can go for the 2 or 2.5 reed strength. At times all it requires to find the right reed is a process of trial and error.


I have a Bb clarinet which mouthpiece should I go for?

Most of the traditional mouthpieces will go well with your clarinet as long as the piece is high-quality. You should check out the customer reviews to find one ideal for you.

Does the ligature influence the sound quality of the clarinet?

Yes, it does that is why it is important to identify the right one. Some mouthpieces come with their own ligatures with most of them being made from metal. You also have some made from leather which is a good material for greater sound projection

How do I store my mouthpiece?

Since the mouthpiece is quite delicate it may not be prudent to store it in the clarinet case. Instead you should purchase a mouthpiece bag for storage.


Choosing the right mouthpiece is a challenging affair because it is a matter of personal preference. However, if you understand your clarinet well than you can go over the various options available in the market and you will have the right choice. If you are a student you can ask your music director to kind your choices. You can also check out the various customer reviews available online for the best mouthpiece.

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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