Seven dollars and sixty cents. That is the cheapest conducting baton that I was able to find on Amazon- and it INCLUDES as case! What a deal! A Garlinger Baton costs significantly more than that! (a basic case is included with our batons, btw) So… why pay more? Why purchase a baton that costs 6.5 times as much? Well, let's take a little dive into that, shall we?
Let me first say, when I was in college, I had the absolute cheapest conducting baton I could get my hands on. It lived in a book bag, and was abused. By the time I “retired” it, It was more electric tape than it was… wood? I’m not sure that there was any real wood on it. The shaft had come completely dislodged from the handle, and there was a counterweight in the handle that would shake every time you would direct a quick movement. It served its purpose. I made it through my conducting classes, and passed. Woo! That baton wasn’t doing me any favors though. It was warped, which gave me a very uneven ictus. The fact that the handle counterweight would move around while I was conducting was very distracting. And the generic handle shape didn’t fit my XL hands at all. It was a stick with a (garbage) counterweight. That was it.
I think this goes without saying, but cheap conducting batons are cheap because they are not made well. You cannot go and buy a $7.60 baton and expect it to feel like much more than a stick with a ball on the end. They are mass produced, the quality control isn’t great, and they are not made to last. They use subpar components, so they are more likely to break. And they are as run of the mill as you can get. Everyone of the conducting batons you can order on Amazon looks the exact same as any other conducting baton you order on Amazon.
How do cheap batons compare to custom conducting batons?
Much like the name sounds, a custom conducting baton is not mass produced. Each one is handmade by a <real> person, and chances are that person knows what it takes to make a well-balanced conducting baton. When you buy a custom conducting baton, you KNOW what it is made of! On top of all that, chances are NO ONE will have a baton just like yours.
How do I know this? Hi, I’m Adam and I make conducting batons! When I go into my shop, it takes anywhere from an hour and a half to two and a half hours to make a conducting baton. Each baton is inspected with jeweler's glasses to insure that it is free of blemishes. Only high quality components are used during production, and they are focused to be ergonomically designed. This is all information that can be found in the FAQ’s of our website, but that’s not what really makes a Garlinger Baton better than a cheap conducting baton.
The biggest difference in our custom conducting batons vs. a cheap conducting baton is the feeling that you get when you hold them. Our goal is to inspire confidence when you open your case and hold your Garlinger Baton. When you hold a cheap conducting baton, it’s just an eight dollar stick. When you hold a Garlinger Baton, it is something that helps provide a little shot of confidence, because, you know it was made for you and your hands.
It is a different mind set when you use a Garlinger Baton. I know for me, the thought that no one else has a baton like mine, and no other baton out there feels like mine, makes me feel like I am using the best product out there for me. Make no mistake, a Garlinger Baton will not make you a good conductor without putting in the work. But if you are a little nervous, we hope that it will help to calm those nerves.
If you are already confident, then it’s nice to know that you can show off your own style in your baton as well. Because they are all unique, just like you!