Ocarina Buying Guide
Things You Should Know About STL Ocarinas
We’re musicians ourselves and as such know what we want out of our ocarinas. You can be sure that our ocarinas are all of the highest quality and designed from a musician’s point of view. Other than our plastic ocarinas, all of our designs are handcrafted and in our case, handcrafted doesn’t necessarily mean expensive! You really don’t need to spend a lot to get a really good ocarina.
Now, let’s help you choose the best ocarina for you!
Our ocarinas come in different materials:
Plastic. Our plastic ocarinas are durable and affordable making them a great choice for beginners and children. If you are just starting out and don’t want to invest a lot, plastic ocarinas are the way to go. And don’t worry -- they sound great!
Ceramic. This is the most commonly used material in ocarinas. Ceramic vibrates better than a man-made material and therefore offers a more resonating sound. They’re also handcrafted and some are like little works of art thanks to intricate detailing and design.
Porcelain. These are the geared for professionals. They offer the purest sound and allow the sound to project far throughout the venue they’re played in, even in large concert halls.
The size of the ocarina determines the pitch (high or low). Generally, soprano ocarinas are smaller, tenor ocarinas are bigger, and bass ocarinas are the biggest. The sizes of the fingering holes also vary in accordance to the size of the ocarina. Kids may find a soprano ocarina’s smaller holes easier to cover. Tenor ocarinas are the most common and easily played by anyone. Bass ocarinas offer a great deep sound, but have bigger holes.
You’ll want to consider the pitch range when choosing an ocarina. The pitch range refers to how many notes you can play. If you already play other instruments or are a musician, then you’ll want a double or triple ocarina in order to be able to play any song you want. Otherwise, a 12-hole ocarina is a great start because it is easier to play thanks to linear fingering that’s also very easy to remember.
Still Not Sure?
Here is some extra advice that is sure to help you narrow down your choice.
For Legend of Zelda Fans
Turned on to the ocarina because of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time? You’re not alone! As a matter of fact; many others first heard of the ocarina because of the game and that’s how a lot of our customers wound up here! We understand and won’t disappoint!
If you have never played an ocarina or are under 9 years old, then we recommend starting off with a plastic ocarina.
For Those Looking for a Unique Gift
Have someone who is impossible to buy for? Looking for a truly unique gift for you or the person who seems to have everything? We’ve got you covered thanks to unique and whimsical designs that are sure to put a smile on any face!
For Those Looking for Themed Ocarinas
We covered our Legend of Zelda ocarinas above, but have many other themed ocarinas to choose from, including: (click on them to visit the pages)
And that’s just to name a few!
Fans and collectors will love our impressive range of ocarinas inspired by these games and series’. Just enter your favorite in the search bar and enjoy the selection!
For Professional Musicians
Our ocarinas have been used by musicians in major symphony orchestras, including the Atlanta Symphony and Chicago Symphony Orchestras. We are proud to provide the highest quality ocarinas to professional musicians.
Our purple clay and porcelain ocarinas will meet any challenge and live up to the demands of a professional. Each one is handcrafted hand-tuned to perfection, as well as designed for comfort. We also have multi-chamber ocarinas made from purple clay and porcelain for those looking for wider pitch range.
We recommend Purple Clay Tenor C Major Ocarina for $159.
For Music Educators
STL Ocarina is a division of St. Louis School of Music. We have been focusing on music education longer than we have been a retailer.
We believe that the ocarina is a better alternative to the recorder. It is easier to play, has better sound, and it offers a very unique culture prospective in that different types of ocarinas can be found in every culture.
Music education is so important to us that we have devoted an entire section of our website to assist teachers and students. Please visit the page and contact our education outreach coordinators. We will be happy to help you start your own ocarina program. p>
Songbooks and Learning Materials
We have many different types of songbooks and exercise books to guide you as you learn to play the ocarina. If you have never played before, our method books are great choices. If you have been playing for a while and are looking to improve, our daily exercise books written by Dr. Jenna Daum are essential in helping you fine-tune your skills. All of our ocarinas also include a free online instructional booklet.
We also have a broad selection of songbooks to suit every level and musical taste. Please visit our accessories section for more.