How Much Does a Trumpet Cost?

Written by: Staff

Being used since the early 1920s, the trumpet has been a staple during the jazz era, a time when these instruments were extremely expensive.

Today, however, the prices have dropped significantly, offering everyone the chance to enjoy the sound.

Trumpet Macro by Jameziecakes, on Flickr
Trumpet Macro” (CC BY 2.0) by Jameziecakes

How much does a trumpet cost?

Depending on the type, brand, condition, age and where it’s purchased, the costs of a trumpet can greatly vary anywhere from as little as $500 to as much as $8,000.  A good, quality professional horn will be between the $1,500 and $4,000 price range, while a student trumpets can cost anywhere from $200 to as much as $500.

A beginner’s trumpet, according to this guide, is due to the manufacturing process since most are produced in larger quantities with numerous compromises.  These trumpets, on average, can cost anywhere between $300 to $500.  Pro quality horns, being the next step up, will be manufactured by top brands such as Yamaha Bach and Besson.  These types of trumpets from national retailers can cost 41,000 to $1,300, but you could pay about 30 percent more if you were to buy from a local music store to cover their overhead.

With a handful of types to choose from, refer to our table below to see the average ranges we had found:

BassPitched the same as a trombone, the bass trumpet will be tuned to C or Bb.$3,000 to $5,000
BbThe far most popular type of trumpet in the trumpet family. Offers a warm tone with a tonal quality that blends with all types. Trumpets are made for everyone from a beginner student a professional.$1,500 to $4,000
CUsed alongside a Bb trumpet, the C is tuned one tone higher than the Bb and will have a smaller sized body.$3,000 to $5,000
Eb / DExploits the highest register and is often seen in competitions. Trumpets tuned to Eb come with an additional set of slides to tune the instrument to D.$2,500 to $4,500
PiccoloTune to Bb, the Piccolo one octave above the Bb trumpet and will, almost always, come with a fourth valve to create the perfect fourth.$2,500 to $6,000
PocketMore compact than the standard trumpet, a pocket trumpet creates the same sound as standard but is much more compact.$1,000 to $2,000
HeraldCommonly played in ceremonial situations and parades, this trumpet has an elongated straight tubing that sits far out from the player.$1,000 to $2,000
SlideA trumpet designed for trumpeters looking to expand their range with a lower range instrument.$500 to $2,000

NOTE:  These are just averages and is just a chart to help you budget.

As for brands, the table below lists the average for popular brands found at online/local retailers:

BrandAverage Price
Adams$1,100 to $3,300
Allora$150 to $600
Amati$300 to $1,200
B&S$2,800 to $5,600
Bach$1,900 to $4,200
Cerveny$1,300 to $2,600
Fides$1,400 to $2,800
First Act> $200
Getzen$1,300 to $3,300
Jupiter$800 to $1,300
Kanstul$900 to $3,400
Schilke$2,200 to $3,400
XO$2,100 to $3,000

At Music Arts, a national music store chain based in Frederick, Maryland, trumpets cost anywhere from $475 to $6,000.  For example, the Bb trumpets can cost anywhere from $3,200 to $3,700 while the C trumpets cost $3,200 to $4,400.  Piccolo trumpets can cost $4,000 to $6,000, while the slide trumpets can cost $475 to $1,500.  Pocket trumpets can cost $1,700, while triumphal trumpets can cost $1,500.  Lastly, bass trumpets can cost upwards of $4,300.

Trumpet overview

The bore, which is the diameter of the trumpet’s tubing measured at the second valve, can range from .458″ to .460″.  The larger the bore, the more power it can provide; however, it will require more effort to play.

A trumpet’s finish is often a clear lacquer finish on a buffed brass surface, but some may have a silver plate finish that’s thinner when compared to the lacquer finish.  A silver plate, according the Musician’s Friend, allows the metal to vibrate more, creating a brighter tone.

What are the extra costs?

Even though a new trumpet will come with a mouthpiece, some opt to either upgrade or purchase another for backup purposes.  If you buy used, it’s highly recommended you switch the mouthpiece.  A good mouthpiece can cost $10 to $50+

A standard trumpet case, if you needed one, could cost $20 to $200.  For example, the popular protech trumpet case retails for $110 to $180.

Don’t forget to factor in music lessons if you need them.  The average 30-minute lesson can cost $25 to $50, while a 60-minute lesson can cost up to $75.

Tips to know:

As you can see, there are many types of trumpets, so which one works for you?  If it’s your first trumpet, then a Bb is highly recommended since most schools only use this type.

How can I save money?

If you’re unsure you want to invest a few hundred dollars in a new instrument, highly consider renting for a few months to see if it’s worth it.  Renting can make sense as long as you don’t rent for too long.

Used trumpets, as long as taken care of, can be a wonderful investment, and most used trumpets are up for sale since most give up playing or simply upgrade to a better brand.  eBay, Craigslist and Facebook are great places to start to find a slightly used trumpet that could potentially save you more than 60 percent.  Even if it needs service, you could save quite a bit.

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