What Is the Best Professional Trombone?

Professional Trombone

You have gone through your musical career and have taken the steps from beginner to intermediate and are now ready for a true professional trombone.

Finding the best professional trombone means finding a trombone that fits your style, budget and is the perfect companion to walk you through your career.

To help you decide we've put together a list of what we consider the best professional trombones available today.

The list includes trombones that span the range from entry level pro trombones, i.e., less expensive, to those used by the best trombonist in the world.

Best Professional Trombones - Top Contenders

Top Rated Professional Trombones

Bore Size

Bell Size

Rating

Price

King 3B (2103) Legend Trombone

0.508"

8"

$$

Getzen 1036F Eterna Trombone

0.525"

8"

$$$

Conn 88H Trombone

0.547"

8.5"

$$$

Yamaha Xeno Trombone (YSL 882O)

0.547"

8-11/16"

$$$

Bach 42BO Stradivarius Trombone

0.547"

8.5"

$$$$


1. King 3B (2103) Legend Trombone

The King is one of the more affordable professional trombone options available. The King is a legendary choice, and it has been widely used by professional studio and jazz players for generations.

King 3B (2103) Legend Trombone
Key Features
  • .508” bore
  • 8” unique taper bell
  • Light hand slide
Pros
  • Extremely affordable with high-end performance
  • Unique sound quality
  • Tone clarity
  • Quick hand slide
Cons
  • Narrow slide

2. Getzen 1036F Eterna Trombone

The Getzen Eterna Trombone is a high-quality professional trombone that offers quality and a consistent tone. Its simple design provides a superior sound projection, and the F attachment reduces resistance.

Getzen 1036F Eterna Trombone
Key Features
  • .525” bore
  • 8” brass bell
  • Open-wrap F attachment
  • Regular slide
Pros
  • Quality sound
  • Unique wrap F attachment
  • Affordable
  • Sturdy design
  • Impressive playability
Cons
  • Valve spring is not particularly strong
  • Tone generation could use some improvement

3. Conn 88H Trombone

The Conn is another favorite brand when it comes to professional trombones. It is moderately priced and comes with a number of added features and is constructed of quality materials.

Conn 88H Trombone
Key Features
  • 8.5” bell
  • .547” primary bore
  • .562” bore standard wrap F attachment
  • Finished in silver lacquer
  • 5G mouthpiece
Pros
  • Unique and high-quality sound
  • Lightweight
  • Versatile
  • Durable
Cons
  • The mouthpiece will not be suitable for playing in high registers

4. Yamaha Xeno Trombone (YSL 882O)

The Yamaha Xeno Trombone is regarded by many musical professionals as the best professional trombone for an orchestra because of its powerful sound and incredible durability.

Yamaha Xeno Trombone (YSL 882)
Key Features
  • Open F attachment wrap
  • .547” bore
  • Fixed gold brass lead pipe
  • 8-11/16” one piece hand hammered bell
  • One-piece outer slide
  • Chrome-plated nickel silver drawn inner slide
  • Beautiful lacquer finish
Pros
  • Strong and durable
  • Slide lock allows the slide to stay in place
  • Adjustable rotor on the F attachment
  • Carrying case and standard mouthpiece
  • Narrow and light slide
Cons
  • One of the most expensive professional trombones on the market

5. Bach 42BO Stradivarius Trombone

The Bach Trombone is one of the current best sellers. It has an open wrap design which reduces bends for easier use. It has amazing sound projection and intonation, and the vibrant sound is improved with a thicker bell which gives a more consistent and professional sound.

Bach 42BO Stradivarius Trombone
Key Features
  • .547” bore
  • 8.5” bell
  • Open wrap F attachment
  • Nickel silver tubing on the outer slide tubes
  • Lightweight slides
Pros
  • Resistant to corrosion due to yellow brass slides
  • Unique symphonic sound
  • Nickel silver design for better durability
  • Open wrap F attachment provides consistency in sound
Cons
  • Prone to wear and tear sooner than other brands

Professional Trombone Buying Considerations

Bear in mind there are many factors that go into deciding which trombone would be the absolute best for your personal needs. A few to consider include:

Bore Size

The bore size varies from trombone to trombone. This is what makes that unique sound. There are medium-sized bores for better control and larger-sized bores to provide a greater sound projection.

Bell Size and Shape

The shape of the bell and even its thickness are important because this also can affect the sound of the trombone. Bell diameters can vary between 6.5” and 10.5”. The wider the bell, the bigger the sound.

Rotary Valves

Rotor types also vary between instruments. Some restrict air flow more than others. The top selling trombones typically have a standard (or conventional) rotor which provides a moderate amount of air resistance.

F-Attachment

An F attachment is pretty standard on most pro trombones.  When you add an F attachment into the bell section, you are adding length to the trombone so that it is easier to reach longer slide positions.

Mouthpiece

The mouthpiece is a personal choice, and they come in an infinite variety of sizes and shapes, so it is up to you to decide what is the best.


Top Rated Professional Trombone

After researching the many brands available in the professional trombone world, BIG's recommendation for the best professional trombone has to be the Conn 88H Trombone. It boasts of a light design which makes it easier to play, the hand slide is strong and still light for better ease of movement, and the F attachment rotor helps prevent resistance.

After choosing your trombone, be sure you get a good trombone case for better and safer portability. Also, invest in a good trombone stand, so it has a resting place that is not on the floor in between practice sessions. It keeps it upright and out of harm’s way.

The trombone, especially a professional grade trombone, is a serious investment in you and your musical career - choose wisely!


Still not sure which trombone to buy? Visit our BIG Trombone Buyer's Guide for more helpful tips on selecting a trombone.