The Martin Freres Vendome Bb Clarinet

Martin Freres Vendome is an Entry-Level Professional Bb Clarinet manufactured during the same time period as the LaMonte Model 2 Student clarinet. In fact, the Vendome Bb clarinet is the same design as the Martin Freres LaMonte Model 2 Bb clarinet. The notable differences between the two clarinet models are as follows:

  1. The Vendome uses a much higher grade of Grenadilla wood (containing no worm holes or sapwood) allowing for a natural Grenadilla wood finish
  2. The Vendome uses a bright Nickel-Plate over a Copper-Nickel metal composition which provides key-work that is much stronger and more stable than key-work used on the LaMonte M2
  3. The posts are re-enforced with set screws to prevent mis-alignment
  4. The springs are professional quality nylon coated steel
  5. The center bore is a conical rather than straight bore delivering outstanding intonation


The Vendome, manufactured in France by Martin Freres from 1951 – 1966, and distributed by Buegeleisen and Jacobson of New York and Toronto. There were an estimated 15,000 units produced. The clarinet has a rich, sweet, focused tone with good fluid action and excellent intonation. The key-work is excellent as the posts are reinforced and keys are nickel-plated. This clarinet is best suited for the advanced musician.


The estimated value of the Vendome can be described as follows:

Condition Description

  • Used Parts Only to Poor Condition – Not playable; Needs Major Work
  • Used Fair to Good Playable Condition – Playable with minor issues, may have repaired cracks, may have metal loss, fair pads, fair cork, fair springs.
  • Used Very Good Playable Condition – Playable with no issues, may have repaired cracks, may have minor metal loss, good pads, good cork, good springs.
  • Used Excellent Playable Condition – No visible scratches, No cracks or pins, No Metal Loss, new pads, new cork, good springs

Vendome Clarinet Value

The estimated Retail Value of the ‘Vendome Martin Freres Paris’ clarinet can be described as:

  • Used Parts Only to Poor Condition $75US – $199US
  • Used Fair to Good Playable Condition $200US – $449US
  • Used Very Good Playable Condition $450US – $598US
  • Used Excellent Playable Condition $599US – $849US

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