I've owned a couple of BAM cases over the years--one for my tenor sax, and the double clarinet case mentioned above. They've served me well over the years, and I thought I'd get a single BAM for the CT, until doing some research. This time around, I was struck by how expensive a single clarinet case would be--especially when comparing BAM to the Protec Slimline PRO PAC cases, which seemed to be of similar quality, yet a quarter of the price.
Considering the return policy of WWBW, I figured it was worth checking out the Protec. It arrived about a week ago, and I'm very happy with it.
The biggest difference, and of considerable importance to players of unusually shaped clarinets (Yamaha CSGs or Wurlitzers come to mind, with their longer top joints and short barrels) is the interior foam. BAM cases are very pliable and can be molded to the shape of the horn--the Protec Slimline, by contrast, is harder and not particularly flexible. The good news for me is that the CT fits perfectly, and while the Rovner ligature and cap is a snug fit, if it is angled as above, it too fits ideally. There are two slots for barrels--the second slot might serve as a swab/cork grease compartment, but I've used it for a back up short barrel.
|Protec Slimline Clarinet Case "Green Tea"|
Finally, that most important of considerations: color. When buying a classical case, most musicians have a choice between various shades of black. You have your jet black, your Euro-black, and your techno-black. Each of these shades helps ensure the case will match your black turtleneck and scarf, which in turn will help you blend in at auditions (and as we know, blending is indispensable in the classical world). These rules aren't rigid: once you get a tenured position, you may be permitted by your conductor to branch out aesthetically and get yourself a leather case--and so long as it matches, for instance, the leather of a psychiatrist's couch, it won't clash with anything in your life.
This aside, jazzers are free to splash a little color--if it's done responsibly (always remember, as with your altissimo, that with great power comes great responsibility). Like so much in the jazz world, there is a symbolism to everything, and we have our own in-language. The "Green Tea" color, among jazz clarinetists, has a very specific reference: the cover of the 1965 LP release of Artie Shaw's "September Song" and Other Favorites. That's right, folks: this color proves your jazzer status every bit as much as saying "Daddy-O", calling Beethoven a "long hair", and saying "solid", knowingly, when you agree with someone. It's hep. And if hep ain't hip, then it's hip. It's also seven bucks cheaper than the black case.
So don't be a moldy fig, Daddy-O. Get hep to the case, gates. It's solid.