How much does a trombone cost? All you need to know!

How much does a trombone cost? All you need to know!
Trombone Prices Breakdown: New vs Used, Small Bore vs Large Bore vs Bass – All You Need to Know and then some!

Here’s an overview:

Introduction to Trombone Prices

When exploring the world of trombones, understanding the pricing structure is essential. Whether you are looking to purchase a new or used instrument, or debating between small bore, large bore, or bass models, knowing the pricing nuances can help you make an informed decision. Trombone prices can vary significantly based on factors such as brand, condition, bore size, material, and additional features, but here’s a hint:

Trombones are surprisingly cheap!

In this guide, you will delve into the intricacies of trombone pricing, comparing new and used options, as well as examining the price differences between small bore, large bore, and bass models. By the end of this breakdown, you will have a better understanding of how trombone prices are determined, enabling you to choose the best instrument to suit your needs and budget.

  • New vs. Used Trombones:
    • New trombones often come with a premium price tag due to their pristine condition and warranty coverage.
    • Used trombones, on the other hand, can offer significant savings and may have unique character from previous use. And they can be at least as good instruments as a new horn.
  • Small Bore vs. Large Bore vs. Bass Trombones:
    • Small bore trombones are favored for their agility and bright sound, typically priced differently from larger bore options.
    • Large bore trombones offer a fuller sound and are often, especially when fitted with an F attachment, priced higher than small bore models.
    • Bass trombones, designed for lower registers, come at a premium due to their specialized construction with dual triggers and larger piping.

Understanding trombone prices is the first step towards finding the perfect instrument that aligns with your budget and musical preferences. Whether you opt for a new or used trombone, or decide between small bore, large bore, or bass models, being knowledgeable about pricing will empower you to make an informed choice.

Factors Affecting Trombone Prices

When considering the pricing of trombones, several key factors come into play. Understanding these factors can give insight into why prices can vary among different trombone models and conditions. Here are some crucial elements that can affect trombone prices:

  • Brand: Established brands with a reputation for quality and craftsmanship often come with higher price tags compared to lesser-known brands – often for a reason!
  • Condition: The condition of a trombone, whether new or used, significantly impacts its price. Brand-new trombones will generally cost more than used ones, with the latter’s price varying based on wear and tear. But as long as the slide is in mint condition, some dents and makes wont affect how the trombone plays.
  • Bore Size: Trombones are available in small bore, large bore, and bass trombone models. Large bore and bass trombones usually command higher prices due to their specialized designs and larger size.
  • Materials: The materials used in the construction of a trombone can affect its price. Trombones made from high-quality materials such as silver are more expensive than those made from lower-quality materials.
  • Age: Older vintage trombones may hold sentimental or historical value, but often they are just great instruments made by craftsmen from the past. This can make them more expensive than newer models. However, older trombones might require more maintenance and repairs – remember to clean and lubricate the slide and test it out properly before purchase.

Keeping these factors in mind can help prospective buyers navigate the wide range of trombone prices available in the market. By understanding how these elements contribute to pricing, individuals can make informed decisions when purchasing a trombone that suits their preferences and budget.

New vs. Used Trombones

When considering whether to purchase a new or used trombone, there are several factors to take into account.

New Trombones:

  • Quality Assurance:
    • Buying a new trombone often comes with a guarantee of quality.
  • Warranty:
    • Most new trombones come with a warranty, providing peace of mind in case of any issues.
  • Customization:
    • Some manufacturers offer customization options for new trombones, allowing players to tailor the instrument to their preferences.

Used Trombones:

  • Cost Savings:
    • One of the main advantages of purchasing a used trombone is the potential cost savings compared to buying new.
  • Vintage Appeal:
    • Used trombones may have a vintage appeal or unique character that is not present in newer models.
  • Already Broken In:
    • Used trombones may have already been played in, potentially offering a more mature sound right from the start.

Ultimately, the decision between new and used trombones will depend on individual preferences, budget constraints, and the specific qualities a player is looking for in an instrument.

Student Model Trombone Prices

trombone playing

Student model trombones are designed for beginner players and are typically more affordable than professional models. But most often these are still good instruments. Here’s a breakdown of student model trombone prices:

  • New Student Model Trombones:
    • A brand-new student model trombone can range from $500 to $1.500, depending on the brand, quality, and features included. Popular brands like Yamaha, Bach, and Conn offer reliable student trombones in this price range.
  • Used Student Model Trombones:
    • A used student model trombone can be a cost-effective option, with prices typically ranging from $200 to $1.000, depending on the condition and age of the instrument. Shopping for used trombones can be a great way to find a quality instrument at a lower price.
  • Small Bore vs Large Bore Student Trombones:
    • Small-bore student trombones are usually more affordable than large-bore models. Small-bore trombones are ideal for beginners due to their ease of playability and lighter weight. Prices for small-bore student trombones typically range from $500 to $1.000, while large-bore models with trigger can cost between $800 and $1.500.
  • Student Bass Trombones:
    • Intermediate Bass trombones are available from about $2.500. These instruments offer a deep, rich sound and are suitable for students looking to explore the lower registers.

When looking for a student or intermediate trombone, consider factors such as brand reputation, condition, and included accessories to ensure you get the best value for your money. Whether you opt for a new or used student-model trombone, there are plenty of affordable options available for aspiring trombonists.

Professional Model Trombone Prices

Trombone pricing range

When it comes to professional model trombones, prices can vary widely depending on factors such as brand, quality, and condition. On the higher end of the spectrum, top-tier professional trombones from renowned brands like Bach, Yamaha, Conn, and King can range up to $10,000 or more for brand-new instruments (with F attachment).

However, it is essential to note that the prices of professional model trombones can also fluctuate for used instruments. A well-maintained, pre-owned professional trombone from a reputable brand can cost between $1,000 and $5,000, offering a more budget-friendly option without compromising on quality – this is often the best way to go.

One factor to consider when evaluating professional model trombone prices is the bore size. Small-bore trombones are generally more affordable compared to large-bore or bass models. Small-bore trombones designed for jazz or orchestral music typically fall within the $2,000 to $5,000 price range, providing excellent value for professional musicians.

On the other hand, large-bore trombones, favored for their rich sound and versatility, can range from $3,000 to $10,000 for new instruments. Used large-bore trombones will be priced lower, making them an attractive option for musicians seeking high-quality instruments at a lower cost.

Bass trombones, with their larger size and lower pitch range, are the most expensive among professional models. Prices for new bass trombones start at around $3,000 and can go up to $10,000 or more. However, used bass trombones can often be found in the $2,000 to $5,000 price range, offering a more affordable alternative for skilled players looking to upgrade their instrument.

In conclusion, professional model trombone prices can vary significantly based on brand, quality, bore size, and whether the instrument is new or used. Understanding these factors can help musicians make informed decisions when investing in a top-quality trombone for their musical pursuits.

Understanding Different Bore Types

When it comes to trombones, the bore type plays a crucial role in determining the instrument’s sound and playability. There are three main bore types to consider: small bore, large bore, and bass trombones.

  • Small Bore Trombones: These trombones have a narrower bore size, typically ranging from 0.480 to 0.508 inches. Small-bore trombones are favored by jazz musicians and players looking for a brighter sound with more agility. They are often preferred for solo and small ensemble performances due to their fast response.
  • Large Bore Trombones: In contrast, large bore trombones have a wider bore size, typically measuring 0.525 inches or larger. These trombones produce a fuller, more resonant sound with greater projection and depth. Large-bore trombones are commonly used in orchestras and concert bands where a powerful sound is needed to blend with other instruments.
  • Bass Trombones: Bass trombones feature an even wider bore size, usually around 0.562 to 0.578 inches. These instruments are designed to produce a rich, deep tone that adds depth to brass ensembles and orchestras. Bass trombones often have additional valves to extend their range and versatility.

Understanding the differences between small bore, large bore, and bass trombones is essential when choosing the right instrument for your playing style and musical needs. Each bore type offers distinct characteristics that can significantly impact the sound and performance of the trombone.

By considering the bore type that best suits your preferences and musical goals, you can make an informed decision when purchasing a new or used trombone. Whether you are drawn to the agility of a small-bore trombone, the power of a large-bore instrument, or the depth of a bass trombone, selecting the right bore type is key to finding a trombone that complements your unique playing style.

For many pro players, having an arsenal of different bore sizes and models is often preferred – luckily to far lower prices than most other musical instruments!

Where to Buy Trombones

When looking to purchase a trombone, there are several options where you can find the instrument you desire. Here are some recommended places to buy trombones:

  • Online Retailers: Online retailers such as Amazon and even Wallmart(!) offer a wide selection of trombones at various price points. Shopping online allows you to compare prices and read reviews from other customers before making a purchase. Would I ever buy a trombone from Wallmart? Maybe, if it was a well-known student model priced competitively. But I would recommend that you try to support the small independent dealers – we need them and their expertise!
  • Instrument Shops: Specialty instrument shops that focus specifically on brass instruments may have a more extensive selection of trombones available. These shops often have knowledgeable staff who can help you find the perfect trombone for your skill level and budget. They are far in between, but worth seeking out.
  • Private Sellers: Websites like eBay and Craigslist can be good resources for finding used trombones sold by private sellers. Buying from a private seller can sometimes offer lower prices than retail stores, but be sure to thoroughly inspect the instrument before making a purchase.
  • Musical Instrument Expos: Attending musical instrument expos or trade shows can be a fun way to explore a wide variety of trombones from different manufacturers. You can test out different models, talk to representatives from various companies, and potentially find special deals or discounts on new instruments. This is how I found my dream trombone many years ago, a small-bore Shires.

Overall, researching and trying out different trombones in person before making a purchase is crucial to finding the right instrument for your needs. Whether you choose to buy new or used, small bore or large bore trombones, exploring different purchasing options can help you find the best quality trombone at a price that fits your budget.

Tips for Getting the Best Deal

  • When buying a trombone, consider checking out multiple retail stores to compare prices and find the best deal.
  • Look for sales or promotions, especially during holidays or back-to-school seasons, to potentially save money on your purchase.
  • Don’t forget to explore online marketplaces and classified ads where you might find used trombones in good condition at discounted prices.
  • Consider trading in or selling your current instrument to offset the cost of a new trombone purchase.
  • Keep an eye out for bundled deals that include accessories such as cases, mouthpieces, or cleaning supplies, which can add value to your purchase.
  • Reach out to music teachers, schools, or local music communities to inquire about any upcoming instrument sales or events.
  • Be open to negotiating the price, especially when buying from private sellers or smaller music shops.
  • Don’t overlook the option of renting a trombone from your music school, which can be a cost-effective way to try out different models before committing to a purchase.
  • Remember to factor in the overall cost of ownership, including maintenance, repairs, and upgrades, when evaluating the long-term value of a trombone.

To get the best deal, it’s essential to be proactive, do thorough research, and be willing to explore different avenues for purchasing a trombone that aligns with your budget and preferences.

Trombone sheet music that brings your horn alive

Would you like to have a personal trombone guru at your fingertips? Then check out Anders Larson’s trombone e-book collection. collection is vast, covering everything a trombonist could need to level up their playing. Whether you’re looking to stretch your skills with the book “Trombone Flexibility” or hit those high notes without breaking a sweat with “The Ultimate Trombone High Range Book,” or improve your trombone improv skills, there is a book for you.

Each book is priced at $19.95 and offers an abundance of etudes, exercises, and patterns specifically crafted for the trombone. From jazz improvisation with the “II-V-I Jazz Patterns for Trombone” to mastering the art of scales with “Killing the Major Scales on the Trombone,” you will be kept busy in the practice room for hours.


In conclusion, when considering purchasing a trombone, whether new or used, the price breakdown can vary significantly based on factors such as bore size and model type. Small-bore trombones are ideal for beginners and jazz musicians due to their agility and flexibility, while large-bore trombones cater to advanced players and classical music enthusiasts with their rich sound and projection. Bass trombones offer a deeper, more resonant tone and are popular in both big bands and orchestras.

When deciding between new and used trombones, it is essential to weigh the cost savings of a used instrument against the potential risks of wear and tear. Additionally, exploring different brands and models within your desired category can help you find the trombone that best suits your playing style and budget.

Remember to factor in additional costs such as accessories, maintenance, and repairs when budgeting for your trombone purchase, although this is significantly cheaper than, for example, saxophones. Lastly, try out different instruments before deciding to ensure that you find a trombone that feels comfortable and sounds great to you!

Whether you opt for a small bore, large bore, or bass trombone (or all of them), choosing the right instrument is crucial to your musical journey. By understanding the price breakdown and various factors that influence trombone prices, you can make an informed decision that aligns with your goals as a musician. If in doubt – ask your music teacher or a pro trombone player you trust. Prices on especially used trombones can vary a lot, sometimes because the seller wants to believe they are worth more than they are.

Overall, investing in a quality trombone that suits your playing style and budget will set you up for success and enjoyment as you explore the world of brass music. Don’t expect your trombone to increase in value like a violin though but enjoy it for what it is here and now; a beautiful-sounding instrument that fits all ears and genres!


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