The trumpet is a brass instrument with three or four valves that is blown with a kettle mouthpiece. The most common trumpets are the valve trumpets; they are available with rotary valves or pump valves (also called Périnet valves). Usually the trumpet is held with the left hand. The ring finger, middle finger and index finger of the right hand operate the valve pushers.
The trombone is a deep brass instrument, which is one of the trumpet instruments because of its largely cylindrical bore (narrow scale). As with all brass instruments, the sound is created by the vibration of the player's lips on the mouthpiece. Thanks to its length, the notes of the trombone sound harder than those of the instruments of the horn family, which have a softer sound volume. The scale length also affects the sound energy. For example, the sound of a trombone is more concentrated than, for example, a tenor horn. The slide trombone usually has seven slide positions, each differing by a semitone. The slide can be shifted steplessly so that the trombone is the only brass instrument that can "slide" from one pitch to another (real glissando).
The flugelhorn is the soprano instrument from the brass instrument family. In terms of shape, tuning and range, it is comparable to the trumpet, but deviating from it, it has a predominantly conical tube, another length and a mouthpiece with a deep cup. It is notated in B (rarely in C). (The flugelhorn in B flat is a transposing instrument because it sounds a big second lower than it is notated in the notation.)
The French horn is a brass instrument with a circularly wound tube. The funnel mouthpiece is characteristic of the horn; a narrow, conical length that ends in a wide bell with a diameter of about 30 cm. The playing position is usually with the right hand in the bell and the fingers of the left hand on the valves. The sound of the horn ranges from full and warm to strong and very bright, depending on the dynamics and position. It is quite homogeneous through all registers, only the lowest notes seem a bit duller and heavier. In forte it sounds comparatively less sharp and, due to the indirect sound emission and the funnel mouthpiece, a little quieter than a trumpet or trombone.
The tenor horn is a wide-bored brass instrument with three or four valves. It is played with a beaker mouthpiece (a deep kettle mouthpiece). The main tube length of the conical brass tube is (in B-tuning) about 266 cm, about twice as long as that of the B-flugelhorn. In Austria, the tenor horn is also known as the "bass flugelhorn". The tenor horn has a conical scale length, which is narrower than that of the baritone horn (which is about the same length), which is why higher natural tones and soft tones can be produced more easily on the tenor horn. Its tone is richer in partial tones than the baritone and is thus perceived as tonally harder and sharper, but lighter and more precise, tending towards that of the French horn.
The baritone or baritone horn has three or four valves, very similar to the tenor horn. The basic tuning of the baritone is also B, but it is built with a larger bore. The baritone horn is blown with the kettle mouthpiece. A difference to the tenor horn results from the length of the baritone, which is much wider, i.e. is more conical. Furthermore, the baritone sounds a little softer and fuller in the lower registers than the tenor horn.
The euphonium is a deep brass instrument. Its sound is reminiscent of the tuba, with the difference that it does not target the bass, but the tenor and baritone areas, which is why it is often referred to as the tenor tuba in English-speaking countries. The basic tuning of the euphonium is in B flat; it sounds an octave lower than a trumpet and an octave higher than a tuba in this tuning. Euphonium, baritone and tenor horn are three instruments from the same family with the same keynote and tuning; however, they differ in sound and function. The difference lies in the shape of the instrument: the euphonium is already conical from the mouthpiece; The baritone and tenor horn, on the other hand, have a cylindrical bore that only changes into a conical shape in the second half of the sound tube, behind the valves. The tenor horn also has a significantly narrower length, which is why it sounds lighter and the higher notes are easier to blow. The euphonium has a full, darker sound. The sound of the baritone lies between the tenor horn and the euphonium. Due to the conical shape of the euphonium, it is physically larger and heavier than the baritone and tenor horn and requires more air to be blown.
The tuba is the lowest of all brass instruments. It has an upward-pointing bell, a beaker mouthpiece, three to seven valves and, due to its wide length and the correspondingly strongly conical tube, generally made of brass, belongs to the bow-horn family. The main feature of the tuba is the strong expansion of the tube (wide scale) in a ratio of up to 1:20 from the mouthpiece to the bell of the instrument. When seated, the tuba rests on the thighs of the player, for smaller tuba players with particularly large instruments also on the chair itself. A special stand, shoulder strap or tuba belt is required to play while standing. The funnel usually points upwards and mostly slightly to the left in the version with rotary valves, or to the right in the version with Périnet valves (as seen from the player).
The cornet has a relatively lyrical, velvety and round sound and blends in harmoniously with the wind section. A distinction is made between the smaller Eb cornet and the larger Bb cornet. The cornet reaches its natural limits in height. Cornets only differ from trumpets in that they have a much narrower leadpipe, a more conical length and the more compact shape. The sound difference between the cornet and the trumpet is also small and lies roughly between the bright, radiant sound of the trumpet and the soft, full tone of the flugelhorn.