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linarol

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  1. i went to walnut hill in 1993 for 8th grade - i was in a suzuki program before and then saw how amazing some people were.
  2. this if off topic from the original post, but since everyone likes jargar A and larsen A, has anyone tried a full set of jargars or larsens? I see quinnviolins selling the d,g,c for jargars....
  3. for this reason i started looking into the american brands as alternatives to the pirastro strings i normally use. In the process I found strings that work MUCH better on my instrument. I found d'addario helicores cost half as much and they sound a lot better.
  4. i tried medium dominants and found them to be too bland. on an interesting note, i tried medium obligatos on the lower 3 strings and the stark A obligato and it seems to be doing much better. I bought the full set of stark, so I will try the remaining 3 strings soon, but so far i think the added tension on the A string seems to have helped everything as a whole.
  5. i often wonder if string tension, rather than materials used, is what makes a string 'work' well on a viola or not. interestingly, i usually tune to A=442 with my 4 medium obligatos, and when i decided to try A=440 i get more of the overtones back, which is what i was lacking i think. when i start practicing things sound good, however halfway into my practice sessions things get a little dull. i'm not sure if that's my ear getting used to the sound or the instrument. my viola bow has horse hair on it that is 1.5 years old too and i wonder if that has a play in the dull sound. it's my only bow made by a great french maker so i really hate giving it up even for a few days for a rehair. so many variables! the fact that strings have jumped in price over the last few years makes it very expensive to experiment as well. to the person who asked: my viola is 16.5 inches long, and the string length is 36.8cm (14.48 inches)
  6. lymond - that's an interesting setup i might try it...... are the spirocore D&A too harsh, is that why you use the olives? also, i checked quinnviolins.com and it seems they have different versions of the spirocores in silver or tungsten, what are the differences?
  7. did d'addario re-formulate the zyex strings for viola like they did with the violin strings yet? i'm anxious to try zyex v2. i didn't like the original ones on my viola - i tried them when they first came out, but maybe i didn't give them enough time AND it was a different instrument.... perhaps i was too averse to having hot pink wrappings on my strings....
  8. ok so right now i'm using a set of medium gauge obligatos on my viola, i like them but i kinda am looking for something with a little more edge, volume, brighter overtones.... i used to use evah pirazzis and they were nice, but i thought it was a little too much.... they have too much of a 'laser beam' kind of sound, and they are very expensive and don't last me much longer than 2 months (i practice several hours a day usually so strings wear out quickly). i guess i'm sort of looking for something in between evahs and obligatos..... my viola is 16.5 inch so i'm not sure if i should go past medium gauge, but i'm thinking heavy gauge obligatos might be what i'm looking for. anyone have other recommendations?
  9. did d'addario re-formulate the zyex strings for viola like they did with the violin strings yet? i'm anxious to try zyex v2.
  10. i found the viola i tried of his ok, but lacking. I found problems with the execution of the bridge - it was much too high, and was very roughly cut. I think if it was lower and more refined with the cut it would have had a much more open and resonant sound. It had an average sound as it was, but my 16.5 inch viola projected/resonated more than his 17 inch. The sound was rough, and unyielding. I found this particularly disturbing because I couldn't get more than one kind of sound from the instrument. A good instrument should respond to different bow strokes, this instrument only responded to loud forceful bow strokes. I think if he thinned the table a little more this would help.I also found some of the overall workmanship to be a little too rough for my taste. The purfling and the top surface stood out as being very, very rough, IMHO. A lot of the pictures don't reveal this, you have to look closely at the instrument in person to see this. When I discussed this with Manfio, he seemed very resistant to my concerns. As a player looking for a specific criteria, warning signs lit up in my head that this wasn't someone I could work with to get an instrument that fit my needs.
  11. I had pegheds in my viola, but I had them taken out and replaced with traditional pegs. I felt the pegheds were very nice, but they added a few grams of weight over wooden pegs and that means more work for the left hand. I didn't like how they were 'stuck' into the pegbox permanently either, or how I had to spend extra time cutting the ends of strings so they fit onto the metal part of the peghed. They were nice, but if you have nice wood pegs in an expensive viola and they turn well, you're not missing much. The only thing I regret is having them installed in the first place.
  12. linarol

    chinrest

    i was able to stop fidgeting with my bridge once i discovered pure graphite ... i use an artist pure graphite pencil that's labeled '9b' which is about as soft as they come. if you use pure graphite, you never really have to worry about adjusting the bridge again. because the grooves are slick, the string pressure pushes the bridge back automatically to perpendicular after tuning. normal #2 pencils have been recommended in the past to me, but normal pencils contain a mixture of graphite AND clay. the clay puts too much friction in there.
  13. linarol

    chinrest

    I don't think it translates because your ear is approximately 1-2 inches from the instrument. You're going to hear a lot of more of the details than someone who is sitting in a hall 30 feet away. At a distance you're just hearing the basic instrument. There was a discussion in the list archives about strings, and someone said something along these lines. The player can spend limitless amounts of time on trying different strings, but in the end, to the audience it sounds about the same.
  14. linarol

    chinrest

    i like the wittner plastic hypoallergenic chinrests, particularly because of the unique mounting system. the barrels are positioned in a very intelligent way and instead of the cork padding bearing all the pressure, the barrels bear the weight of the head. this also helps with tigthening as i barely have to tighten it for it to stay on. the cork width is very thin and has a small footprint on the instrument. i find chinrest barrel pressure is the biggest factor with changing the sound on the violin. i think this is one of the only chinrests that seems to have applied structural engineering. unless you place metal barrels on a standard chinrest in just the right way, they aren't going to fit as well as the whittner does. putting this all aside, i think this is one of those nit picky things that a player can hear and fuss about, but when it comes down to it, the audience won't notice the difference in sound. from that perspective, i just try to use what's comfortable, make sure not to overtighten the barrels, and leave it at that.
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