Selmer Paris Supreme Alto Saxophone - Black Lacquer

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After 8 years of secret development, Selmer reveal to us their ‘best saxophone ever designed’

After 100 years of innovation, design and manufacturing of the saxophone, Henri SELMER Paris redefines the modern identity of the alto saxophone with the SUPREME.

The creation of the Supreme embodies the culmination of centuries of expertise, combined with a perfectly mastered manufacturing process that lives up to the ambitions of the SELMER company.

The Supreme rises above musical genres.  It has all the qualities common to the models that preceded it, meeting the desires of all saxophonist profiles: beauty and care in the creation of the Balanced Action, the legendary suppleness of the Mark VI, the ease of the Super Action 80 Series II, the precision and elegance of the Series III, and the power and the roundness of the Reference.

It is characterized by perfectly balanced tuning, infinite sound colours and great ease of response.

It hides the natural and inherent constraints of the saxophone – the playing limitations are non-existent. Its roundness and projection capacity make it an instrument that is both traditional and resolutely modern.

The refinement and care were taken in its manufacture, as well as its entirely corrected ergonomics, reveal an enjoyment and evidence of playing that has never been seen before.


The starting point was an extensive survey conducted internally and among musicians, technicians, dealers and distributors to determine the broad outlines of what the Supreme would become.

Once the specifications were drawn up, the Research & Development teams led by Jéróme Selmer went into action.  They were ready to convert all the acoustic and technical knowledge accumulated over many years of research and acoustic experimentation.  Their objective was clear: to make the best saxophone ever designed.

To better free themselves from musical genres and imagine the universal instrument, a team of saxophone testers of various genres was formed.  No acoustic, mechanical, ergonomic or aesthetic detail was neglected during the numerous trials carried out by the SELMER testers and their designer Jérémie Bernard.

The use of new technologies has been widely employed: 3D printing, metrology (3D scanner), automated control of machining tools, etc.  The idea was to reinvent everything without having to start from a completely blank page.

Finally, after 8 years of overcoming obstacles that nourished and enriched its development, Selmer has ended up with an instrument that is unanimously appreciated by all of its artists and contributors, no matter what style they play in.


  • To make an alto saxophone whose smallest details have been precisely considered to position the Supreme as the most accomplished model ever made.
  • To revitalize their catalogue after the release of the Reference saxophone in 2003, the last high-end saxophone on the market.
  • To reaffirm the position of Henri SELMER Paris as a world leader in the design, innovation, and manufacturer of high-end saxophones.
  • To arouse in musicians the desire to own a new SELMER saxophone.
  • To renew and elevate the discourse, by placing it above musical genres.

Staff Review

It is extremely rare that I find myself in a position like this; having just discovered the World’s most famous saxophone factory have released a new model that, by their own posturing, has been designed to mark a new chapter in history of saxophone evolution.  Perhaps if any other company comes along and lays claims to have made the ‘perfect’ saxophone that combines the best of the past, etc with all the latest modern innovation then we may receive this news with a healthy dose of scepticism.  However, when the company in question is Selmer Paris themselves, I think the message carries a little more authority!

As of the time of writing, I haven’t yet got my hands on our first Supreme, but I have absorbed enough information over the past two days to say that I’m almost certain the instrument is going to be exceptional.  The testimonies of incredible players such as Vincent David, Claude Delangle, Philippe Geiss and Baptiste Herbin (just to name a few) carries a lot more weight than my modest opinion, but I will certainly relish the opportunity when it comes along!

The aspect of the development of this new sax that interests me the most is the manner in which Selmer has brought it about.  Eight years ago, or so, Selmer asked their top artists to list traits that they enjoyed in ALL of the Selmer models, from the Balanced Action to the modern-day instruments.  Using this melting pot of information and opinion the designers set about designing the ultimate saxophone, that has the flexibility to play in all styles. I like the idea that a good saxophone shouldn’t necessarily be pigeon-holed into one category or playing style.  It should be flexible and adaptable.  It sounds like this is what Selmer has achieved.

Let’s mark this date in history and see what unfolds….

Jim Cheek 



Optimized Production techniques:

More precise boring of the diameter of the neck entrance

Three-dimensional manufacturing check

Tone hole extruding machine for extruding by tone hole groups

All these elements ensure more consistency in the manufacturing process to reduce acoustic differences between instruments, even if subtle differences remain.


For better timbre and tuning

New neck bore

Reduction of the diameter of the low Bb and B key cups

Redefinition of the key heights

Modified diameters and locations of tone holes

New bell bore

Mechanics and Ergonomics

3-point concentric clamp for a better neck-to-body connection avoiding deformations of the clamp and tenon

The clamping ring of the socket is made of nickel silver, which brings density to this sensitive area. It is dissociated from the socket, which makes it possible to adjust its position.

The direct arm between the right-hand F# and F keys allows for a finer and more reliable adjustment

Octave key system with Teflon inside the sockets which lighten the action; It also limits play, noise and wear.

Lightening of the C# correction system by repositioning the double tone hole

New front F key design that is more easily accessible

Hinged toggle on left-hand pinky finger keys allows for greater ease of movement from one key to another

Redesigned shapes and placements of the side keys, facilitating fluid passage from one to the other

And additionally!

Realignment of the height of the left-hand mother-of-pearl keys offering a more natural finger position.

Shorter action of the right-hand pinky spatula keys (C/Eb)

Shorter action of the octave key

More natural and optimized position of the side F# key

Use of rollers within the key mechanism for greater fluidity 

Delivery & Returns


If you're based overseas and would like more information, please read our overseas guide located here


Goods purchased online can be returned within 14 days of receipt. This does not apply to custom ordered goods, products where hygiene is concerned and product seals have been broken (reeds, mouthpieces etc), digital download codes or software licences. Goods purchased through our website cannot be returned to our retail stores.

Watch our video


Jim takes a look at the Supreme Alto to see whether it lives up to the hype!

SUPREME Aesthetics

Selmer Paris have introduced a number of stunning new design features on the Supreme. The most prominent of all is an opulent dark gold lacquer, reminiscent of the finish used since the 1940s. If you're looking for something even more outstanding, Brushed, Silver, Black, Solid Silver and Gold Plated options are also available. All key guards (low B and Bb, side F#, Eb, C and the pant guard) have been redesigned with sleek lines and soft angles. The extensive engraving consists of cubes illustrating the structure of the metal molecules, mixed with the more traditional Selmer floral design.


Supreme case: An exclusively designed case made especially for the Supreme by BAM.

Concept mouthpiece
Selmer Paris Neck strap

Silk/microfibre textile
Body swab

Neck swab
Cork grease


All of our instruments are fully checked and set-up by our experienced technicians. Regardless of size or price - all saxophones go through the same process.  Here at SAX, we know that when you buy an instrument, our pro set up is absolutely essential to ensure the instrument you're purchasing is playing to it's optimum performance. 

Furthermore, we offer an exclusive benefit to our customers. Any new saxophone purchased from us can be returned within a year for a FREE checkover to make sure your saxophone continues to perform its best. 



We have decades of experience as a saxophone specialist, thoroughly testing all our products and using highly skilled technicians to professionally set up every instrument that leaves the building.

Our World-Class saxophone advisors are on hand and happy to help with any queries you may have.