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The Eb/F Pitched Brass Instrument Page

Created and maintained by RON LUTTERBIE

This page is a shot at explaining the differences between the brass instruments out there that are pitched in Eb/F. I've seen other pages out there attempt to do the same, but I believe mine to be the most accurate of any I have come across.
Many people are confused about the differences between the mellophone, mellophonium, alto horn, and french horn. Many people also just plain don't know (or care!) what they are. While in some cases there are no definitive answers, below are definitions and pictures of each as best as I can tell based on years of research. In addition, I have pictures of numerous other ODD horns, most pitched in Eb or F.
I guess I have a bias toward these instruments, since I play tenor horn in the Cincinnati Brass Band and play the Horn in a brass quintet,community band, and anyplace where they will pay me!! I currently own a Conn 8d, Besson Soverign Tenor Horn, 1926 Conn Mellophone, 1960's Conn (Kenton inspired) Mellophonium, Frumpet (Gross!), Bach Mellophone, and a Couesnon Eb Alto Flugel.

Click here for a very good article regarding the origins of the horn written by Mark Anderson of Woodstock, NY, as well as descriptions of the different versions out there. (No pictures, but a very good read.)

Interested in figuring out the date your horn was made? Click here if you know the manufacturer and serial number. This is most comprehensive brass listing I've seen.

Enjoy my pages below that picture all of the versions I have found so far. (Please note that since I have .GIF .JPG and .ART file types for the pictures, not all of them will display for you. I'm too lazy to go back and convert them all to a standard format!! My browser is IE, and they all display fine for me.)
If you have any additional details, pictures, or comments, please email me.

This page was last on March 21, 2004.


French Horn The only traditional main-stream brass instrument played with the left hand.
French Horn with pistons A french horn, but with pistons instead of rotors. NOT A MELLOPHONE
The natural horn No pistons or rotors, but crooks instead


Right Belled Mellophone? And you though all mellophones were left belled!
Mellophone Mirror of the horn, with Pistons, bell left, played with RIGHT hand

The TENOR HORN August 8, 2005

NEW! The Double Belled Alto Horn Very unusual horn!
Tenor Horn in Eb Called the Alto horn in the U.S.
Civil war Alto Horn. Circa 1860. See link below for some cool pics!!!
Alto-Flugel Horn An Eb Alto configured like a flugel
Click here to visit the Tenor Horn Forum, the best Tenor horn discussion I've found yet on the net.

So you want to buy a NEW Tenor Horn????


Mellophonium Big ugly thing, bell front, looks like a trumpet on steroids. Inspired by Stan Kenton
Marching Frech Horn? This defies the definition for the mellophone and the mellophonium

Other Eb or F Pitched Instruments of Interest

Getzen Frumpet Not a mellophonium, Not a trumpet. A FRUMPET!
French Mellophonium??? Another spin on the Mellophonium?
Eb Valved Alto Trombone This is a very old one!!!
Alto Trumpet Not sure who would still play this thing, but it is interesting.

Links Links Links Links Links Links Links

The Cincinnati Brass Band
The Cincinnati Performing Arts Page
The Ohio Military Band
The Clarion Brass Quintet
More Pic's of Antiques
More Pic's of Antiques
Great Civil War Era band page, GREAT ALTO HORN PIC'S!!!
Pictures of Antique Brass Instruments