The Top 8 Best Clarinet Ligatures in 2024

A Clarinet is made up of different parts like mouthpiece, flared bell, single reed and the ligature that fastens the reed to the mouthpiece. You can have a variety of sounds from the clarinet depending on how it is designed and materials used. As you blow air into the clarinet the reed inside vibrates hence the melodies.

Since ligatures are not standard pieces of equipment you need to select the right one for your clarinet. Clarinets are also not all the same; you have B Flat or E flat clarinet and each comes with a different ligature. This makes choosing a clarinet not a straightforward process. This review shows you some of the best clarinet ligatures in the market and factors to consider and in choosing them.

The Top 8 Best Clarinet Ligatures in 2024 – Comparison Table

ModelClarinet suitability Color Availability
Vandoren LCO1P Optimum LigatureBb ClarinetSilver polishingCheck Price
D’Addairo Woodwinds H-LigatureBb ClarinetGold or SilverCheck Price
Vandoren LC21P leather ligatureBb ClarinetBlackCheck Price
Rovner Dark 1R BbBb ClarinetBlackCheck Price
Selmer 1719 NickelBb ClarinetNickelCheck Price
Vandoren LC51BP M/OVersatileBlackCheck Price
Bois BLBF Bb Clarinet LigatureBb ClarinetBlackCheck Price
Belmonte Bass ClarinetBass ClarinetShiny NickelCheck Price

Reviews of the Top 8 Best Clarinet Ligatures in 2024

Vandoren LCO1P Optimum Ligature – Best interchangeable pressure plates

This ligature is available in a shiny silver color that makes it quite elegant to look at. It comes with 3 interchangeable pressure plates and cap. This allows you to adjust the tones as the need demands. The ligature keeps the reed firmly to the mouthpiece and this ensures you enjoy trouble free playing of the instrument.

The Vandoren is easy to install and maintain. It offers precise and quick tightening mechanisms with a replacement cap as part of the package. This ligature is designed to work best with hard rubber mouthpieces and is ideal for beginners just starting out to play the clarinet. The ligature is available for Eb through Bass clarinets as well as Baritone and Soprano saxophones.

What we liked:

  • Silver polishing for elegant look
  • Comes with 3 interchangeable pressure plates and cap
  • Helps keep reed firm on mouthpiece
  • Quick and easy tightening

What we did not like:

  • You may experience some trouble correctly positioning it


View price here


D’Addairo Woodwinds H-Ligature – Best for Bb Clarinets

This ligature works with the Bb Clarinet and may not work well with other clarinets. The ligature is available in two colors – gold and silver. The D’Addairo comes with an inverted designed screws and a four-point system that helps apply the pressure on the reed. This system is quite common with many saxophonists and clarinetists across the world.

During purchase of the D’Addairo ligature you also get over-molded mouthpiece cap with two screws that are there for inversion. This ligature is made with quality in mind and this means it will last a lifetime. It also comes with a unique design that helps reduce leaks on the side rails and this enhances its tonal clarity.

What we liked:

  • Available in two colors
  • Four-point system allows for pressure to reed
  • Easy to install
  • Durable

What we did not like:

  • Only suitable for Bb clarinets


View price here


Vandoren LC21P leather ligature –Best leather ligature

Not all ligatures are made from metals, we do have some made from leather and wood. The Vandoren LC21P is a handcrafted leather ligature with a unique design. The ligature is supported by a high-impact plastic exterior which greatly boosts the sound on your clarinet.

The ligature also comes with interchangeable pressure plates that allow you to experiment with a variety of sounds. This helps boosts your playing experience as you can switch from one tone to another. The ligature is sleek and adds some personality to your clarinet. It is easy to install and adjust with the screws just fitting right.

What we liked:

  • Sleek look
  • Quick and precise tightening
  • Made from high impact plastic
  • Comes with three pressure plates

What we did not like:

  • May not fit some clarinet


View price here


Rovner Dark 1R Bb – Best artificial leather ligature

This sleek looking ligature will help you achieve a full and centered tone. The ligature has gained popularity among professional players due to its warm sound. The Rovner does not have pressure points and this means it seats evenly on your reed hence producing an even sound. Since the ligature does not exert any pressure to the mouthpiece it helps eliminate stuffiness hence boosting sound clarity.

The ligature is made for Bb clarinets and may therefore not be suitable for other types. The Rovner is made from artificial leather cover with complementary screws for the mouthpiece and reed. The ligature is easy to install and does not require high maintenance. It is available in black color.

What we liked:

  • Helps develop a more centered tone
  • Does not exert pressure on the mouthpiece
  • Easy to maintain as it is made from artificial leather
  • Easy to install

What we did not like:

  • Available in one color only


View price here


Selmer 1719 Nickel – Best Budget ligature

If you are looking for something affordable than look no further than the Selmer 1719 ligature. This ligature is offered in either their limited edition styles or nickel. While the ligature is inexpensive it also carries the characteristic of being durable.

The Selmer will work with most ligatures except for plastic ones. It is advisable to use a rubber mouthpiece with the ligature. Also, do not over tighten the screws because this can lead to breaking. The sound produced is not that great which means this may not be the most ideal ligature for professionals.

The Selmer ligature is ideal for beginners due to its ease of use and maintenance. It is suitable for Bb clarinets and does not require any batteries for insertion.

What we liked:

  • Easy to install and maintain
  • Very affordable
  • Average sound quality
  • Durable

What we did not like:

  • Breaks off when tightened too much


View price here


Vandoren LC51BP M/O – Best versatile Ligature

The Vandoren LC551BP features an inverted tightening mechanism with two small contact points. This makes the ligature quite easy to use and setup. The ligature comes with a quick and symmetrical tightening system with unique double-track screw mechanism.

The Vandoren ligature is available in four colors – gold, black, pewter, and silver. It is lightweight hence reducing the overall weight of your reed. While it is easy to setup it lacks interchangeable plates and caps for adjustment. However, on the upside this ligature comes with the advantage of use in a variety of clarinets as it does not have a plate system. The ligature is simplistic yet remaining elegant.

What we liked:

  • Can be used in a variety of clarinets
  • Available in multiple colors
  • Quick and symmetrical tightening system
  • Simple yet elegant design

What we did not like:

  • Lacks interchangeable plates for tone variation


View price here


Bois BLBF Bb Clarinet Ligature – Best Unique design

The Bois comes in a design that is very different from what you have in the market. This is because it consists of a ring that perfectly fits into the reed. It does not have screws which makes it extremely easy to install. The ligature does not stretch or slip but stays firmly in position.

The Bois is designed from high-quality materials and this adds to its durability. It allows the reed to vibrate freely without dampening. This ligature has being studio engineered to ensure the best tonal quality and intonation. It consists of the O ring which protects the mouthpiece from slipping and scratches. The Bois is quite popular with a number of professional musicians due to its deepness and high-pitched tones with clarity. It is only available in black color.

What we liked:

  • Produces deep and high-pitched tones
  • Does not have screws hence making it easy to install
  • Holds firmly into position and does not slip or stretch
  • Designed by professional musicians

What we did not like:

  • Does not allow for one to change the tone


View price here


Belmonte Bass Clarinet – Best bass clarinet ligature

The Belmonte comes in a shiny glossy nickel finish that gives it an elegant look. The ligature is made from high quality materials and is suitable for bass clarinets. It is the perfect match for marching bands and beginners. It may not be that suitable for professional players.

The Belmonte consists of a set of screws that you use to attach to the reed and mouthpiece. It is top quality so you do not have to worry much about damaging it. It also does not require lots of maintenance.

The Belmonte ligature is suitable with most clarinets as it does not create any constraints with vibrations. This ensures the sound quality is good and the tone clear. You should however, be extra careful to ensure that you do not over tighten the screws as this can damage your reeds and interfere with sound quality.

What we liked:

  • Glossy shiny look
  • Easy to attach to the mouthpiece and reed
  • Does not create any constraints with vibrations
  • Highly suitable for marching bands and beginners
  • Easy to install and maintain

What we did not like:

  • Not suitable for professionals


View price here


Buying Guide for the Top 8 Best Clarinet Ligatures in 2024

The clarinet is one of the most important pieces in a clarinet. It helps hold the reed in place to the mouthpiece. This has a direct effect on the kind of sound that is produced. The ligature applies some amount of pressure on the reed and this determines how much the reed will vibrate. If you are looking for the best of sound quality than you have to be extra careful in the kind of clarinet you go for.

There are different types of ligature for a variety of instruments and this means you need to be extra careful to select the right one for your clarinet. Ligature are not a one size fit all type of equipment instead they are shaped and sized differently. For example the B flat clarinet employs a much smaller ligature than the Bass clarinet but is slightly bigger than that used for the E flat clarinet.

Here are some key factors to be on the lookout for when selecting the right ligature for your clarinet.


When clarinets started been developed the main material used for the ligature was a string wound up on the reed and mouthpiece. This was replaced by silver and gold. You should identify a ligature that is built durable materials and that complements your unique tastes and preferences.


The cheapest ligatures are those that are made from plastic. You will find them going for less than $20. The benefits of using a plastic ligature is that it forms more perfectly around the reed and mouthpieces due to its softness hence allowing for more even pressure to be applied. This gives you an even sound. On the downside due to their softness less pressure is capable of being applied to the reed hence you lose out on a rich and deep tone.


Most of the ligatures are made from metals like copper, nickel, rose gold and gold. You can choose a ligature based on your unique preferences and budget. Due to the wide variety of metals available these ligatures cost anywhere from $10 to $100 and above. For a beginner you can start out with a nickel ligature as it is capable of holding a steady pressure on the reed. The more precious the metal used in the ligature the softer it is. While metal ligature produce a rich deep tone they come with the downside of being less durable than plastic. They also can cause damage to the reed when you tighten them too much.


Leather ligatures are the new craze due to their ability to apply even pressure on the reed without causing it any damage. The ligature helps produce a more rounder sound that is better than that for metal and plastic ligature. Leather ligature are also renown for having faster responsiveness which mean you have reduced chances for a warped or squeaky sound. This characteristic is something that is needed for more advanced pieces and this makes leather ligature ideal for professional clarinetists. On the downside there is a lot of care that is needed for leather ligature so as to prevent cracking.


These type of ligatures are the least common and most unconventional but they have funs as they do not require any tightening screws. They tend to be durable, produce a warm tone and have a fast degree of responsiveness. On the downside, they are a bit expensive going for more than $100.

Plates and Rails

The plates and rails are important components of the ligature. The rails extend horizontally around the ligature and are used to hold the mouthpiece in place while the plate lies directly above the reed. These components are important because they affect the reeds vibrations.

Ligature maintenance

The type of material you go with for your ligature will determine how much it is affected by climate. If you are playing in a place that experiences a lot of humidity then leather and wooden ligatures are susceptible to warping and shrinking. This means they may require more maintenance than the metallic and plastic ones. The key reason for this is that humidity causes these materials to swell or soften and when they dry up they warp.

Inverted versus standard screws

When purchasing a ligature you will find that they either come with inverted or standard screws. The difference is how they are placed; the standard screws are placed over the reels while the inverted ones are over the front of the mouthpiece. When it comes to the vibrations produced inverted screws have the advantage of allowing the reed to vibrate more freely as the pressure is applied on the mouthpiece front. This leads to a more evenly distributed sound. You can go for the standard screws as they allow you to apply pressure directly to the reed.


Which is better – standard or inverted screws?

Standard screws are ideal for beginners as they help achieve the required pressure without much effort however, the inverted screws allow you to control the pressure which is an advantage for expert players

Which are most durable ligatures in the market?

The plastic ones tend to be affordable, require less maintenance and are durable. Wood and leather ligatures while offer a better sound tend to warp under humidity


Choosing the right ligature is a question of preference and taste. If you are a beginner and on a budget than a ligature made from plastic may be ideal for you as it requires less maintenance while remaining affordable. If you are a seasoned player than you can go for the silver or gold ligature that add some sort of signature on your instrument. You should observe the humidity of the place you are playing your clarinet when going for wooden or leather ligatures.

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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