What is a Plastic Flute?!
I started learning the flute at school when I was 9 years old and both my beginner and advanced flutes were straight head, silver plated models. I was asked to play test the Nuvo student flute which is made from plastic! – a bit of an alien concept to me. However, I’m always keen to try new things!
Plastic instruments have only really emerged since the start of the 21st century. The interesting thing about plastic is that is has many advantages over traditional design metal instruments – lightweight, fun and robust – all these things make it great for a child to learn on. It is also cost effective – priced at around £120.00 – making it an attractive proposition for schools who may buy 10 flutes for a school initiative. The recent huge success of the pBone Plastic trombone has really rejuvenated sales of the trombone.
There are two types of flutes from Nuvo. The Nuvo Jflute is essentially a flute with a curved head aimed at smaller players as young as 5 – by curving the head it brings it closer to the player meaning your arms aren’t required to stretch so far.
The Nuvo Student Flute is the standard straight head model aimed for beginners age 8+.
A nice looking outfit – very attractive semi-hard case with contrasting logo motif. It has a smooth rubber finish on one side whilst the other has a rugged gigbag feel. There is a useful adjustable shoulder strap, making it ideal for the school run. There is also a small outer pouch on the case for accessories (or curved head attachment if required.)
Inside the case there is a pull through cleaning cloth and rod, set of key extensions, O-ring grease and instruction leaflet.
What’s different about the Nuvo Flute?
The Nuvo flute has a number of interesting features you don’t get on a metal flute including:
Firstnote lip plate
This is an alternative lip plate which is provided as an extra aid for beginners. It has a recorder-like mouthpiece to make it easy to get an initial sound on the flute while the learner gets to grips with the fingering and posture.
Removable Key Caps
This is a nice touch and enables the player to customise their flute! The silver coloured key caps can be removed and coloured key caps can be used. Also a useful teaching tool.
The body and key work are made from advanced polymer resins which means that the flute is incredibly light and durable – the whole flute weighs in at just 250 grams.
Bayonet Fit C Foot
The foot joint on the Nuvo differs in that it only has the C and C# key whereas the D# key is on the bottom of the main body. This enables the student to practice without the footjoint until they are ready. The footjoint is quick and easy to attach and locks into the correct position.
The Nuvo is very easy to assemble – there are markings on the headjoint to help you set it up to your personal preference each time. It is comfortable to hold – I like the rubber area to support the left hand whilst playing – gives extra comfort and support for younger players.
It is an easy blowing flute with a nice tone. I don’t think the tone is any better or worse than a standard student metal flute. The plastic lip plate obviously feels a bit different to metal on your lip but again, no better or worse.
Coloured key caps are available in three colours – pink, blue or green and are a great way of personalising your flute.
Flute Curved Head joint – available in black or white – giving you the option to easily progress onto the straight head when you’re ready.
Great beginner outfit which comes in a range of funky colours – this should make it a popular choice with younger players and the customisable keys also adds to its appeal. A great choice for schools that are looking to start a flute ensemble that doesn’t break the bank.