Congratulations, you chose this beautiful instrument for creating music and will not regret it! But how to chose from the best flutes for beginners?
Just be sure to make the right choices for you in the very beginning. Buying the right instrument is the core one!
It can be hard to understand what all the descriptions mean if you are not an intermediate to professional flute player.
So let me help you out there!
In the beginning there was the flute – best flutes to begin with!
Let me start by saying that there is not just one flute, that fits your needs. Only in the later stages of your career you will find THE PERFECT ONE, your flute soul mate. Mine is called Paul D’Or, Paul for my friends.
I bought it in Germany, after looking everywhere for “him” I finally found THE ONE. My friend asked which brand it was and I said Powell, obviously with a German accent because she understood Paul!
Paul was very expensive, the kind that you buy once and forever and so we decided that this was going to be my marriage! The shop owner and my friend where testimonials and we had a beautiful ceremony where I cried…
Anyway, I brought Paul home to Italy and because he is the “golden boy” my other friend gave him his surname D’Or.
So this is what happens, if you go pro and lose your head because of the flute passion!
But my marriage is a very happy one so far.
Just a warning if you take it too seriously you might spend a lot of money…but that’s not your case.
There is plenty of good beginner flutes out there, so you won’t have to travel the world to find “the one”.
You don’t even have to leave your home, as you can very comfortably decide which one meets your needs after reading my article and order “him” online!!
So have fun and stay till the end.
A little flute language – 3 points to chose from the best flutes for beginners
What do we look for in a beginner flute?
It should be easy to handle, simple in maintenance, solid and repairable. It should provide a flexible open and warm sound.
So how do we make sure we got those points covered?
1. Easy to handle
- A flute for beginners should provide the best and most comfortable posture possible. This will be achieved by assuring that it has plateau keys also known as closed keys (as opposite to the open key wholes for intermediate and advanced flutists). This will make it easier to close the wholes even though the fingers are not perfectly centered on the key.
- A flute for beginners but also flutists with small hands and short arms (me!) should look for the Offset G keys (as opposite to Inline G keys) as this allows your left hand to close the G keys more comfortably. It provides an ergonomic fit and a more natural posture.
- The foot should only have a C and not B key, as this additional key makes the flute heavier and the low notes’ distinction and diction even harder. Go with the C foot!
- If you are under 10 years old or older but not tall ( I had to wait until I was 11), make sure your flute comes with both, a curved and a straight head, as this will allow you told hold it closer in the beginning (shorter arms) and switch to the straight head when you outgrow the curved one.
For more information on when or if to choose a curved head joint for your new flute please consult my article —–> here.
2. Simple in maintenance, solid and repairable
Well-known brands deliver their flutes with all that you will need including a complete cleaning kit. It consists in a cleaning rod and a cotton cloth for cleaning the inside of the flute. You will have to attach it to the upper end of the rod and pass it through your flute, all three pieces of it.
If it doesn’t provide the cloth you can look for a tissue that maybe your grandfather of father don’t use anymore. Tissues for men are perfect size and not too thick.
Dependable brands also equip the cleaning kit with a silver polish cloth for cleaning the outside, if the flute is silver plated of course, which I recommend. Don’t go for the solid silver just yet, silver plated is perfect in the beginning.
Flutes for beginners will have to be replaced as you advance, but if you chose well-established brands and silver plating and maintain your flute the right way, you can play it for years.
Chose the best brands to make sure your flute can be repaired easily and with too much of a cost.
For more information on the maintenance of your new flute, have a quick look ——-> here.
3. It should provide a flexible open and warm sound.
Last but not least, we should say something about the importance of sound quality. You will wish for a flute with an easy to produce warm sound with substance. And that is playing well in tune.
It should help you find your own sound and thus be very flexible. This depends on the lip plate, the riser, the material and thickness of the flute (ability to vibrate and produce different harmonic frequencies) and the scale that is used to put the wholes in it.
Some aspects you can change later on, like the height of the opening of the keys (affects sound quality and intonation). So you do not have to worry about that now. In the beginning you wouldn ‘t be able to verify that, neither in the shop and least buying online. So I will forward experts’ advice and recommendations on open superior sound quality and comfort in its production.
Your flute should provide great flexibility for sound production (like they say, even play when you hold it outside of the car window! …which I do not recommend at all!)
To learn about good practice books have a look at the following article ————->HERE.
My top 2 recommendations from the best flutes for beginners
The two brands that I recommend for all the reasons listed above, that is those which provide them all are Yamaha and Pearl.
My own beginner flute was a Pearl flute and I still have it in case my professional one is not available. I can play it in my symphony orchestra or chamber music groups, it is still doing fine. So I definitely recommend Pearl flutes.
I have seen in my years of teaching and speaking to colleagues that Yamaha is even more solid and can bring you through advanced studies as well. Most Yamaha flutes I have seen have excellent intonation and are easy to play in tune.
So my two top recommendations from the best flutes for beginners are
Yamaha YFL-222 Intermediate Flute for Student (International Version)
This flute comes with an easy to handle case. It also offers foot joint marking to facilitate fitting and is specifically designed for a clean attack, sensitive response, and accurate intonation.
This flute comes in a hard case, which is much more safe than the other one, and with an anti-tarnish strip inside the case. There is no bag with the hard case, so you will have to buy that as well. But the hard case is much more professional and will let the flute live longer!
Is it possible to learn the flute by yourself and how long does it take? More info —-> here.
Conclusion on how to chose from the best flutes for beginners
Now that you have chosen your flute it is time to get some action! The best practice books are the ones I discuss in my article —————–> HERE.
Even though Trevor Wye describes everything you need with helpful images in the following book:
To know what to do with it in the first moments, you can follow some useful videos on YouTube.
Be sure to take good care and maintenance of your new flute. Also play it for some minutes several times a day as that is the best way to enhance muscle memory. Be curious and not judging. Try things out!
Also try to improve your breathing. You can do that by reading my article —-> here.
On this website topflute offers some huge hacks for practicing the flute and you can browse through them as well —-> here.
If you haven’t already done so you should provide yourself with a music stand, metronome and tuner. Some earplugs for your neighbors might be useful as well when beginning to play the higher octaves!! You can read my articles linked below for further information concerning your new flute life:
Now go and have fun!
Let me know your first impressions and if you have any questions!
Happy flute life,