In addition to being a private violin teacher, Alecia started writing music-related articles 3 years ago and has been enjoying this experience greatly. Loves quilting and scrapbooking in her free time.
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Last updated: January 30, 2023
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If you’ve done your fair share of trumpet practice on a student trumpet and are ready to move on to the next step, then it’s time to invest in an intermediate trumpet. This step up takes you from a beginner trumpet to the medium level trumpet category working to increase and enhance your skill level. As such, you will need more features to practice with but you also want to get something that boasts a reasonable price tag. After all, you are still developing as a trumpeter.
The best intermediate trumpet will come with higher end features students may need once they become comfortable with the instrument. These features aim to improve sturdiness and tuning while playing, and yield results closer to those of professional trumpets but without the hefty price tag. That is why we look at important features of intermediate trumpets such as material and finish, weight and balance, price and warranty to help you pick a piece that will suit your skill level the best.
Our experts today have gathered all the information you need to make the right purchase. We have covered every angle of what to look for when searching for the best intermediate trumpet, so start off with our comparison table to see how well every piece ranks against the competition. Then move on to reading our detailed product review for each model and conclude with our informative buying guide as you come closer to getting your intermediate trumpet.
The Jean Paul TR-430 trumpet is known for its overwhelmingly positive reviews among buyers online, and for good reason. The American company has produced a trumpet for the intermediate level with impeccable quality and style that pros can appreciate, and pricing that even beginners can benefit from.
The primary focus of this trumpet’s design is to serve as an upgrade to the student-level Jean Paul models, surpassing them in ergonomics and performance.
The adjustable third trigger allows the user to play with a more natural hand position which promotes proper playing technique. The lead pipe made of rose brass adds both a professional look and a warmer, richer tone variation.
The well-known quality construction of the trumpet’s piston valves is rare among trumpets of this price range, and their durability contributes to this instrument’s long life and enhanced sound quality. Some reviewers even compare the responsiveness and accuracy of these valves to those of professional level trumpets!
All Jean Paul trumpets come with their own stylish carry case for you to take your instrument safely on-the-go. However, some customers have experienced issues with the durability of the case. However, there is the option of getting a new case should anything happen to it.
Though the TR-430 trumpet by Jean Paul is marketed towards intermediate levels, it is a great quality trumpet suitable for all skill levels which is why we’d like to nominate it the Editor’s Choice on this list.
What are our favorite features?
Quality materials provide enhanced sound quality
Durable and better performance
Adjustable third trigger allows for better technique
With experience in creating instruments for well over fifty years, Suzuki has an established reputation as a supplier of quality instruments for students. The MCT-1 trumpet is one such product, offering features and accessories that any beginner needs to succeed.
The MCT-1 boasts a “vibrant, warm and centered tone” created by the silver plated 7c mouthpiece – it sounds full and rich so beginners won’t have to put in excessive effort.
The piston valves are made with polished Monel alloy which is durable and corrosion-resistant. The result is longer-lasting performance that requires less maintenance: an ideal quality for student use.
Another student-friendly feature included in this trumpet is the two water keys which remove more condensation within the piping, keeping the sound cleaner for longer.
The trumpet has been finished with a professional-looking gold lacquer, further adding to the rich sound quality. The slides are made with silver-nickel for aesthetic appeal and further resistance to corrosion.
To top it off, the MCT-1 comes with an incredibly sturdy aluminum case that will protect your trumpet on-the-go.
This trumpet does come with a heavier price tag than other intermediate trumpets, but with a reliable name like Suzuki, you can be sure it’s well made and will last. For the best sound, this trumpet does require a good scrub after each play.
Given all its great features and applications, we nominate this trumpet the best intermediate trumpet for students.
Why is it special?
Monel alloy pistons
Two water keys for cleaner sound
Sturdy aluminum case
What are the flaws?
One of the pricier models at the intermediate level
Requires cleaning after every play for the best sound
The YTR-2330 trumpet is Yamaha’s latest version of their student trumpet which has been well known for quality production. With a design focused on performance and lightweight structure, this trumpet is a reliable and worthwhile investment for those looking to transition to the intermediate level.
To make the trumpet lighter and well balanced, the main tuning slide does not have a brace. The two-piece bell is thick enough to balance out, and the construction method for this trumpet allows for a consistent and lively tone. The bell is made of silver-plated yellow brass which creates a forceful, sonorous tone and encourages technique and endurance.
The two tuning slides on this trumpet are manufactured the same way as those on Yamaha’s professional trumpets. The result is durable, higher quality slides that create a more refined intonation.
For a more natural playing position, the third valve is adjustable. A water key on this third valve allows for ease of use.
This trumpet’s pistons are made of durable Monel alloy that is both corrosion resistant and allows for smoother play.
This trumpet is very travel-friendly and comes with a strapped carry case. Its light weight makes it effortless to bring anywhere. Due to the higher-end materials and construction methods, some find this product comes with a hefty price tag.
Overall, the Yamaha YTR-2330 is our Upgrade Pick for good reason: it’s a very well-made trumpet for the learning player with a reliable design that supports you as you improve.
The TRP-1000PL from Kaizer is an intermediate trumpet specially designed for students and novice players. It comes with a price tag parents can get behind and a construction that can withstand younger player use, making it one of the best intermediate trumpets for younger players on this list. The product comes with a lifetime limited warranty and a 45-day free trial to ensure customer satisfaction and a worry-free purchase.
This trumpet has been designed to endure the treatment and conditions that come with being a student trumpet. The rose brass lead pipe and cupronickel tuning slides improve the instrument’s overall timbre, making the sound rich and consistent while improving the overall lifespan. The cupronickel tuning slides are resistant to rust.
The overall trumpet is a durable and sonorous yellow brass. The valve pistons are stainless steel, which is corrosion-resistant and reduces friction when played. The lacquered finish gives the trumpet extra durability while adding a little uniqueness as these trumpets come in a variety of fun colors.
To fit younger hands more naturally, the third valve slide ring can be adjusted for a better grip.
The TRP-1000PL comes equipped with a standard 7C mouthpiece that offers ideal playability for students. One unique feature on this trumpet, however, is its compatibility with other types of mouthpieces. Simply remove and replace the &c piece with another to better fit your style or playing preference.
The trumpet comes with a molded case, a polishing cloth, gloves and valve oil though on some rare occasions customers have reported not receiving the valve oil.
Mendini by Cecilio has been selling bestselling trumpets and for good reason: they supply beginners and intermediate trumpeters with budget-friendly and quality instruments that include all you need to learn to play. The MTT-30CN is one such trumpet that comes at such a great value, earning its place as our budget pick on this list.
Though the production quality may not reach those of the higher-end brands, Cecilio makes sure the trumpet is of the highest quality possible while remaining in its price range.
The bell for this trumpet is one piece, hand hammered like the professional ones for a more even sound. The 0.46 inch bore size allows for a solid sound to go through with a manageable amount of effort for students. First and third finger saddles on this trumpet are important for a more stable grip, especially for children. The 7C mouthpiece is composed of phosphorus copper, a type of metal used on mouthpieces of more advanced trumpets.
Many customers can agree that the double-plated two-colored look gives a beautiful aesthetic touch.
One thing that makes Mendini by Cecilio products so great for beginners is the full package of accessories that come with every instrument. The MTT-30N comes with its own hard-shell protective case with backpack straps, valve oil, polishing cloth, gloves, a foldable stand and a chromatic tuner.
Some small issues people have regarding the trumpet concern the valves – they tend to get sticky and require regular oiling. There is also no spit valve on the third valve slide, so the valve might have to be removed to clean it out.
The Hawk WD-T313 is a good looking and easy-to-play trumpet designed for beginners with intermediate features and quality. Its sound is bright and also plays well with different music genres, from jazz to rock, or blues to funk while remaining easy to use for a learning player. For its range of playable versatility, we nominate this trumpet the most versatile intermediate trumpet on this list.
For a beginner trumpet it comes at a slightly higher price, but you can appreciate the quality construction of this trumpet in the long term.
This trumpet is fairly lightweight with a smaller bore for beginners to play better and practice their power. Due to this the trumpet doesn’t have as strong a sound as those of more advanced trumpets, but this shouldn’t be an issue in a beginner band. It plays clearly and accurately otherwise.
For durability and enhanced sound, the trumpet has a rose brass lead pipe and rust-resistant stainless-steel piston valves. The valves may get sticky over an extended amount of time, so be sure to oil regularly and generously. The silver finish adds extra strength and a uniquely stylish look to the instrument.
The WD-T313 comes with a standard mouthpiece great for student use, and a durable, travel-friendly carry case. Because of its light weight, this trumpet is very portable and can serve as a great backup trumpet to take on-the-go.
The main concern regarding this trumpet is what to do if it breaks. Hawk isn’t one of the larger, higher end companies so replacement pieces may be fairly difficult to find.
What are our favorite features?
Good, sturdy construction
What could be better?
Replacement pieces are difficult to find
Sound is not strong
Things to Consider
Instruments aren’t an easy pick. You have to understand the sound coming from the trumpet and have a preference in your tune to make it through with any trumpet. Intermediate trumpets give you more opportunity than a beginner’s trumpet. Therefore, when you move up to an intermediate trumpet, you’re going to have a more personalized experience with this so you have to a sturdier understanding of what you want to do with your instrument.
Trumpet for intermediate players – what to expect from the instrument
An intermediate trumpet places you directly in between the skillset of a beginner, and a professional. Once you’ve surpassed the beginner’s level you can expect to move on to an intermediate level trumpet for further development.
Intermediate trumpets have a sturdier build and more capability to them to encourage improvement. They are not though, in any way the same standard as a professional grade trumpet. There are separate trumpets in this class.
Naturally, you’ll be looking at a certain budget when searching for an intermediate level trumpet. These trumpets are better than a beginner’s yet not the standard of a professional.
The budget you’re looking for when it comes to a better-quality intermediate trumpet is $200 to over $1000. If you reach $5000 to $10,000, you’re probably looking at professional grade trumpets.
Keep an eye out for those intermediate trumpets that are $200, they might be beginner trumpets.
From student to intermediate – tips for upgrade time
The first step to making this change is to know what’s in store when you transfer from a beginner level trumpet to an intermediate level trumpet.
Firstly, the intermediate trumpet has an additional valve ring and is relatively lighter than the beginner trumpet. With the intermediate trumpet, most people get a better and more comfortable grip on their trumpet, with a finer tuned sound with the additional tuning.
To know when you want to make the new step, just try out holding an intermediate trumpet first, to see if you get the comfortable grip you want. Intermediate trumpets are for those people who have some experience and skill with trumpets but don’t need to cover the basics anymore.
Consider the following features to choose the perfect intermediate trumpet
There are some new and old features you have to keep in mind when selecting your intermediate trumpet to make it perfect for you. Each trumpet’s sound will indefinitely be different from one another so it’s better to have a general understanding of any trumpet’s build. With this knowledge you can discern what will make your trumpet individual and closer to your perfection.
Finish and materials
When it comes to a finish on intermediate trumpets, you can encounter either a lacquer or silver-plated finish. Lacquer finishes bring out a deeper sound and is applied by spraying and baking the layer. A silver-plating brings out a lighter sound and is more durable than the lacquer finish.
If you’re looking at a gold-plated finish, you’re looking at a professional trumpet.
Weight and balance
All trumpets will weigh around the same, but it’s about the feel you receive when you hold your trumpet.
You’ll want a balance between how you hold the trumpet while you’re playing it and when trying to keep it up to your mouth. You don’t want it to weigh too much that you can’t lift it up for practice and long periods. Before dedicating yourself to a trumpet, find one that is small and light enough to hold properly but not too small and light that it feels cheap, as if you’re holding a toy.
The mouthpiece can be considered one of the most important parts of the trumpet. Without the proper mouthpiece, you won’t be able to make the right sounds or even implement your breath into the instrument.
You can come across a deep cup, which will bring out a softened and warmer sound. If the cup is shallow, you can expect a generally higher tone to the trumpet. Shallow cups give a sharper noise and respond more efficiently to high notes.
The Kaizer TRP-1000PL has a changeable mouthpiece which allows you to change it to your preference.
You can say all trumpets are the same, but you’d be looking at the picture with blind eyes. The truth is that each trumpet’s noise comes out a little differently since not even the best craftsmen have control over the exact sound that comes out.
Before you choose your trumpet, it’s better to get a preview of what the trumpet sounds like first. You’ll discover a difference with each note between trumpets and eventually, based on your musical preference, you’ll find the perfect trumpet.
Bore and bell sizes
The bore and bell do make a significant difference to the sound of the trumpet, though just to be sure you’re getting the best out of your purchase, it’s best to try out the instrument before buying.
The bore, when thicker in diameter gives off a thicker and deeper sound, which can be harder to manage.
The bell, when smaller gives of a more repressed and sharper note while bigger bells will provide you with a deeper and mellower tune.
The Bb trumpet is one most commonly found since it’s the most produced and sold style trumpet in the market. Starting off with a Bb trumpet is the best idea since the window for this trumpet is vastly open.
The C trumpet is less commonly found but still frequently seen. The C trumpets are used in a more professional grade and have a brighter sound than that of the Bb trumpet. All of the trumpets found on this list are Bb keys.
The leadpipe, also known as the mouthpipe is the longest tube on the trumpet that controls the airflow. This, therefore is an important part on the trumpet. What your main concentration should be over is the bore diameter. This affects the depth of the sound. The larger the bore, the deeper the sound.
All intermediate trumpets, such as the one listed in this review have three valves to greater control the twelve notes you can move through. The first valve takes the note down by one, the second one takes it down a semitone and the third by one and half tones. The tones can only be properly navigated through with the tuning slider.
There are accessories available with the purchase such as an instruction book, a cleaning kit and sometimes you can even get a maintenance repair plan.
There’s never harm and only gain with getting a warranty. In the hands of a student, anything can happen to the trumpet so it’s better to have coverage for any accidents or replacement parts.
How to clean a trumpet
Firstly, you want to take your trumpet apart so all moving parts are separated from the body. Place all of the individual pieces in a tub of water and soap. With your cleaning instruments, get into all of the valves, the slide, the pipes, and the bell.
Let all of the parts drip dry on a rack. You can lightly rub the pieces with a rag but you do risk scratching the coating. Oil the valves and grease the slide. Place everything back together and you’re good to go.
Long tones are encouraged during practice as they help develop strength by sustaining a note for a longer period. They also give you the chance to listen to your sound and improve on it. However, these aren’t the only tones you’ll come by. Try diverse tunes to get a hold of all possible tones and develop flexibility.
To keep your instrument working nicely, you will need to tune your trumpet from time to time. The main tuning slide is a c-shaped metal tube which slides in and out to fine tune the instrument. The further out the slide is placed, the lower the tone the trumpet will produce. Adjust this tuning slide after listening to a resonant sound, extending the slide if you are sharp and shortening it if the note is flat.
If you are looking for a great quality intermediate trumpet, the Jean Paul TR-430 is our ideal choice for you. It’s got the look and feel of a more advanced trumpet, with performance and intonation comparable to big-name, higher-end companies. With raving reviews from plenty of satisfied customers, this trumpet is definitely worth checking out.
Another great pick for an intermediate player is the MCT-1 from Suzuki. With their name and experience, you can be sure you’re getting a reliable, instructor-approved instrument that will support you on your journey to mastering the trumpet.
Finally, the best intermediate trumpet on a budget is none other than the MTT-30CN from Mendini by Cecilio. This popular model is as affordable as they get, and the company makes sure to sacrifice as little quality as possible so you you’re getting a great value.