-Dark, resonant tone
-Good build quality
-Less responsive than H179
The Holton H180 shares the same design as the more widely played nickel silver H179 model, but its yellow brass construction makes it ideal for a player seeking a darker more resonant tone quality. But this advantage also has a disadvantage: while the sound may be darker, the horn is also a little less responsive due to the brass metal. Additionally, yellow brass horns can dent more easily. For this reason, we recommend sticking with the H179 for beginning students -- even if the gold color makes the horn look more appealing. But for a more advanced player seeking a more complex tonal quality, the H180 may be the better choice.
It used to be quite popular for more advanced players to purchase an H180 and upgrade its lead pipe and bell with higher quality materials from makers like Lawson. But due to price increases, the cost of upgrading an H180 would be not be so much lower than buying a new custom horn.
Cost: The Holton H180 sells for $4,349 new.
Comparing used horns? Check out our Used Horn Deal Tracker
Also consider: A medium sized alternative to the H180 is the H178. Also in yellow brass, its smaller bell may be more comfortable for some players.