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The contraforte is a version of the contrabassoon, which was made to take the already strong and unique sound of the contrabassoon and make it stronger.

Made by Benedikt Eppelsheim in collaboration with Guntram Wolf, the contraforte uses a wide bore to produce a distinct tone, voluminous in character.

Few of these instruments have been made. Eppelsheim intended for this instrument to be made only with the most exact precision, for it is very large and has very complicated fingerings, even when compared to the odd fingerings and thumb movements associated with the bassoon.

[edit] Technical specifications

The contraforte has many technical aspects that have not been associated with instruments like the bassoon and contrabassoon. Some of these aspects have only been produced for the contrafortes specifically made by Eppelsheim, so if one would want to hunt down one of these instruments, these aspects may not be involved.

The contraforte has a written range from A1 - G5 (in scientific pitch notation), which sounds as A0 - G4.

Large toneholes allow for a free response and a very large dynamical range.

Many of the key bearings lay in synthetic sleeves for silent key actions, and push rods make for easy key action with low friction.

The half-hole mechanism provides a clean, silent octave for F# and G3. There are also well-built automatic octave keys from notes A3 to F4.

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