Which Marine Band

Good afternoon,
I currently have a full set of 12 Hohner Marine Band 1896 harmonicas. I am confused and wondering about the new Marine Band and other new harps that Hohner is producing.

Should I consider upgrading? Keep those I have? Give up and punt?


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If price is of concern, then I’d go for the Special 20 model. Otherwise why not try a Crossover.

Hey @DonC great to see you hear again, my friend! EXCELLENT question. I’m just beginning to get my head wrapped around the Marine Band product offering, and plan to do a video on it in the not too distant future, but here’s the gist:

MB 1896 $50 - single lacquered pear wood comb, sharp corners, OUCH to play. Unbeatable tone. Virtually the same design and manufacturing process as 1896.

MB Deluxe $60 - triple lacquered pear wood comb, smoother corners, COMFY on the lips! Also unbeatable tone. VERY VERY VERY similar tone. Virtually identical tone to 1896. Screws instead of nails makes it easier to fix.

MB Crossover $80 - triple lacquered bamboo comb, smooth. COMFY on the lips. MAYBE even easier to play than the other two? MAYBE. Slightly brighter tone. Easiest to get overblows if you care about all that nonsense.

I DEFINITELY recommend trying a Deluxe, and if money is no object, try a Crossover too! I’m pretty sure, like me, you’re gonna fall out of love with the 1896.

Hope that helps!