French Horn/Atkinson NR501 Erfurt model
TC wrote at 2016-03-19 15:55:02
The Atkinson Erfurt models are a discontinued line of instruments built in Atkinson's California shop 10-15 years ago. They were Kruspe wrap horns available in nickel, yellow or rose brass. The model the OP referred to, the NR501, was the rose brass version. It is not one of the cheap Chinese imports you are recalling...I've heard horror stories of those from educators who bought them for their school programs. I personally own and play an NR501. It was made to compete with the Conn 8D and all of the Hoyer, Holton, Yamaha, etc. clones of the 8D. It is very similar in design to an 8D with a slightly narrower bell throat. In terms of quality, it is not a handmade boutique horn but is comparable to other "pro" line factory instruments. As instruments of this design have fallen out of fashion, I believe Atkinson dropped the Erfurt models to concentrate on their high-end Geyer/Knopf wrap instruments for greater profitability. BTW, I have always found Mark Atkinson easy to get ahold of and very helpful. If you are looking for what I call the Traditional American-style horn, the NR501 is worthy of consideration.