Top 10 Clarinet Reeds for Advanced Players for 2024

Choosing the right clarinet reed can be complicated as you need to factor in the age of the player and the reeds strength. Reeds are not standard instruments and you will discover the strength of the reed differs. The reed strength will determine the density and flexibility of the instrument. Manufacturers will rate the reed strength from a scale of 1 to 5. One is the softest of reeds and 5 is the being the hardest.

Reeds are also measured in terms of their half size increments and you will measurements like 1.5 and 3.5. As a beginner it can be challenging keeping up with all these dimensions. This review, has narrowed down the top ten reed clarinets for advanced players in 2022.

Top 10 Clarinet Reeds for Advanced Players for 2024 – Comparison Table

ModelStrength Packaging Availability
D’Addairo Rico Bb clarinet reed2.510 packCheck Price
Vandoren CR101 Bb Clarinet110 packCheck Price
Royal Bb clarinet Reed2.53Check Price
Vandoren CR1925 Bb Clarinet V.122.550Check Price
Vandoren CR8035 Bb clarinet3.510Check Price
Tanbi Music 10Bb Clarinet Reeds1.5 & 2.010Check Price
Vandoren CR5035 Bb Clarinet 56 Rue Lepic3.510Check Price
Vandoren CR121110Check Price
Clarinet reed 2.5 strength2.510Check Price
Suewio Bb Clarinet2.510Check Price

Reviews of Top 10 Clarinet Reeds for Advanced Players for 2024

D’Addairo Rico Bb clarinet reed – Best for easy play

The Rico reed is a popular reed clarinet that is easy to play. It features a thinner vamp and unfiled cut that gives it a traditional blank and clear sound. The reed is suitable for a variety of playing situations and is recommended for use by students and advanced players.

The reed has been made from field to factory. The cane used for the production of the reed has been harvested in some of the top quality fields in France. This makes it one of the finest in the market. Once harvested state of the art technology has been used to process the cane. This has resulted in a cane that offers unrivalled quality.

The Rico reed popularity stems from the fact that it is recommended by many teachers for their students. It is affordably priced while still offering players durability. During purchase the reeds are available as 10 reed boxes, 3 reed packs and 25 reed dispensers. Since no synthetic materials have been used for the production of the reed the sound quality is unrivalled.

What we liked:

  • Multiple packaging options
  • Recommended by teachers for their students
  • Made from the fields to the factory with state of the art technology
  • Does not use synthetic materials

What we did not like:

  • May require more maintenance to prevent mold accumulation


View price here


Vandoren CR101 Bb Clarinet – Best for hitting all register response

This traditional reed from Vandoren allows for one to get an excellent response in all registers. With it the pianissimo is capable of attacking even the highest of notes. The Vandoren is a very flexible reed that allows the staccato and legato to execution even for large intervals. It does this while still retaining its richness of tone.

You can have the Vandoren for saxophones and clarinets. The reed can be used even by beginners as it is particularly easy to play. While the reed comes in different strengths it is recommended that beginners start with the lower ratings like under 2.5 as this is not too difficult to play.

While it is common to find that softer reeds produce less rich sounds due to their flexibility the Vandoren is an exception as the reeds are of a higher caliber and this enables them produce clear notes. During purchase each of the reed will come in its own “flow pack”.

What we liked:

  • Affordable high quality reed
  • Offers excellent response in all registers
  • Allows for higher tones
  • Comes with sealed flow pack packaging

What we did not like:

  • One package


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Royal Bb clarinet Reed – Best for classical and jazz applications

The Royal reed clarinet is a traditional Rico cut with a stronger spine. It is offered with a strength of 2.5 and is available as a box of 10. The reed is suitable for use by jazz and classical applications.

The Royal cut is made to be slightly stronger than other reeds in the market and this helps in the production of a much richer sound. This makes the reed a bit harder for beginners to hence making it ideal for advanced players.

The reed features a thinner vamp that is easier to play. The royal reed can be distinguished by its filed cut. The benefits for this is that you have a greater ease of response in low registers.

What we liked:

  • Comes with stronger spine
  • Mainly used for jazz and classical applications
  • Offered in pack of 3 reeds
  • Has strength of 2.5 and is filed cut

What we did not like:

  • The reed is not ideal for use by beginners as it is difficult to play


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Vandoren CR1925 Bb Clarinet V.12 – Best extended palette reed

The Vandoren comes in a reed strength of 2.5 which is the average for most of the reeds. The model has a thicker heel with longer palette with enables it to produces more vibration. The thicker tip leads to a deep, rich sound that is found in longer lasting reeds.

The reed is available in a number of strengths and can be purchased in a pack of 50. Every reed sold comes in sealed flow pack package.

Vandoren produces its reeds with the same cane tubes that you find in its alto saxophone reeds. The reeds are packaged individually for freshness.

What we liked:

  • Longer palette for more vibration
  • Available in a number of strengths
  • Uses same cane tubes for the alto saxophone
  • Thicker reel tip

What we did not like:

  • Needs more maintenance


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Vandoren CR8035 Bb clarinet – Best conical shape reed

The Vandoren is an affordable V21 reed that comes in a conical shape of a 56 rue lepic reed. With this amazing combination the reed is capable of all registers of the clarinet while still producing some level of depth of sound and warmth.

The Vandoren reed allows its players to play with immediate response and amazing presence. It is the perfect choice for performances due to its ability to handle large interval leaps efficiently. Like any other Vandoren reed it is sealed in flow pack for freshness. Vandoren is renown for producing high quality reeds and this one is no exception. Players will particularly enjoy the rich and even tone made by this piece. Players can remain focused without worrying much about whether the reed will handle jumps.

What we liked:

  • Comes with a basic conical shape
  • Allows players to play proficiently in more registers
  • Offers a warm and rich sound
  • Comes with Vandoren flow pack for freshness

What we did not like:

  • Some complaints on packaging


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Tanbi Music 10Bb Clarinet Reeds – Best packaged reed

The Tanbi offers premium reeds for both students and professionals. The reeds are easy to play and durable while still giving off a good sound. All the 10 reeds that are available in the packaging are of the same quality.

Tanbi has gone into great lengths to ensure that you get your reeds in perfect condition. They have ensured that each of the reeds comes in its own plastic cases. This protects it from damage and keeps dust away. The reeds are also sealed with nylon for extra protection.

The reeds come in a variety of strengths from 1.5 to 2.0. Included in the purchase is 1 tube of clarinet cork grease. The reed can be used by experienced players due to its soft nature they may have challenges reaching higher notes.

What we liked:

  • Great packaging
  • Availability in a variety of strengths like 1.5 to 2.0
  • Easy to play
  • Quite durable

What we did not like:

  • Experienced players may find it harder to reach some notes


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Vandoren CR5035 Bb Clarinet 56 Rue Lepic – Best thick cane

The Vandoren is designed with a thicker cane with a heel taper that almost resembles that used for German style reeds. The reeds is perfect for those who are looking for a rich and centered pure sound. It also offers quick response in all registers while providing maximum stability.

The Vandoren has strength graduations that are smaller and more specific. This helps the reed retain its consistency. It comes in a pack of 50 and is sealed in flow pack for maximum freshness. The reeds are pricy and not available in a variety of strengths this makes them not so ideal for use by beginners.

What we liked:

  • Responsive an all registers
  • Thicker cane with tampered heel
  • Produces a rich and pure sound
  • Comes with sealed packaging

What we did not like:

  • Not available in a variety of strengths hence not suitable for beginners


View price here


Vandoren CR121 – Best bass clarinet reed

The CR121 is a special bass clarinet that is ideal for beginner and expert players. The reed is soft and flexible and this helps give it easier sound projection. It carries the characteristic high quality build that is synonymous with Vandoren reeds. The reed produces deep sounds even though it has a softer reed strength.

The traditional reeds are great for offering excellent response across all registers. It also allows the pianissimo to attack even in the highest of notes. The CR121 is extremely flexible allowing for the legato or staccato execution of large intervals. The reed comes in a sealed flow pack that ensures it reaches the consumer fresh.

What we liked:

  • Ideal for bass clarinets
  • Excellent packaging
  • Allows for easier sound projection
  • High quality build

What we did not like:

  • Requires constant maintenance


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Clarinet reed 2.5 strength – Best Generic Reed

These generic reeds are available in a pack of 10 and are sealed to ensure maximum freshness. The reeds have a strength of 2.5 which is considered medium and are made from high quality material. This helps the reed with sound projection while still making it durable and elastic.

The generic reeds are easy to play hence ideal for use by students and expert players. The tip is made to be thinner hence helping the reed retain its richness of tone. The clarinet reed is the perfect replacement for someone who has broken their own reed.

To preserve the reed it is advised to gently wipe with water and absorb the water with a rest paper. Once clean put it into a well ventilated area for drying.

What we liked:

  • Widely used for all levels of playing
  • Great clarinet replacement
  • Made from high quality materials
  • Easy to play
  • Affordable

What we did not like:

  • Questions about the quality since it is a generic brand


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Suewio Bb Clarinet – Best for multiple users

The Suewio comes in a pack of 10 reeds all made from high quality materials. During the manufacturing process the reeds are harvested by hand and then digital reed making technology is used to transform them into works of art. The end product is a reed that maintains its richness of tone with great sound clarity.

The Suewio is easy to play as it features a thinner vamp and unfiled cut. This design makes it easier to play and helps it produce a clear sound. Most of the players will attest to the freedom of response they have when playing the piece.

Suewio has wide usage from beginners, intermediate to professionals. It is also used by teachers and students. You can play the Suewio for jazz and classical music. The reeds are packed in a plastic case that ensures they reach the end user in freshness. The reed is offered in 2.5 strength.

What we liked:

  • Wide usage
  • Easy to play
  • Offers great sound clarity
  • Highly flexible reed

What we did not like:

  • Offered in one strength


View price here


Buying Guide for Top 10 Clarinet Reeds for Advanced Players for 2022

Clarinet reeds are not all equal. You will find experienced players changing their reeds all through their musical career. This means you will find yourself in the market in search of a new reed frequently. Some of the top reeds companies offering high quality reeds include Rico, Vandoren as well as Selmer, Rigotti and Legere. You will also find some reeds from some unknown generic companies. Reeds tend to come in packs and it is important you check the reed strength before purchasing one. While the generic reeds are cheap it does not mean they are of a poor quality. There are some decent generic reeds in the market that will meet your needs. Here are some key factors to consider when purchasing a clarinet reed.

Hard or soft reeds

Reeds can either be soft or hard. For beginners the soft reeds are the most ideal as they are easier to play. This means if you are a beginner you should look for a reed with a strength of 3. The problem with soft reeds is that they often lack depth. Hard reeds produce more depth but tend to be harder to play than the softer ones. They also offer better sound intonation, which is important when playing high and low notes.

Reed strength

It is very important you consider the reed strength in your purchase. The reed strength is used to measure the clarinet density and flexibility. The reed strength runs from 1 to 5 with the 2.5 being the most common.

Reed cut

Reeds are not cut all the same. You have French filled cuts and regular. If you are a beginner this should not be a cause for concern but if you play professional then the cut will really matter. The regular cuts feature distinct u shape at the base of the vamp while the French file is where an extra strip of bark is removed below the vamp.


Reeds are perfect for producing some high quality sounds. It is imperative you know the factors that come into play to produce high quality sounds. Factors like the reed strength will come into play in determining sound quality. If you are new to the world of reeds go with reeds from reputable companies as you assured of their quality.


Which is the best reed strength?

It will depend on the type of sounds you expect from the reed. Reed strength is ranked from 1 to 5 so you will have numbers like 1.5, 2.5, 3.5 and so on. The most common reed strength is the 2.5.

Should I get a generic reed?

Generic reeds have the benefit of being affordable. But, this does not mean they are of inferior quality. It is just that with branded reeds you will be assured of the company maintaining high standards in their production.

Which is the best reed for a beginner?

For a beginner you can start out with a reed with a strength of 3. This is because soft reeds are easier to play hence making them ideal for beginners.

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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