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  1. Yes--try heavy-tension strings. Helicore strings are available in heavy tension.
  2. I think they're ok for really bright student instruments, as they're very mellow. But I find them to be kind of unrefined, and not very resonant, as you said.
  3. Hmm...a hard question to answer. IMO, Thomastik's synthetic strings do have a different "personality" than Pirastro's. To me, Pirastro's synthetics generally sound fuller and more refined; Thomastik's generally are a little more brash and powerful sounding.
  4. One other thing--I find it interesting to qualify strings in terms of how 'hard' or 'soft' their response is. Some of Pirastro's strings have a very soft response--Tonicas...Eudoxas...Obligatos are probably medium-soft...Evah's somewhat harder. Helicore strings are probably medium-soft...Zyex strings, somewhat harder... Does this make sense to anyone? I'm talking about the feel under the bow (and it's not directly related to tension), not the feel under the fingers.
  5. In general, people on this board in the past have seemed underwhelmed by Zyex violin strings, and I wonder if that's because most tried the medium-gauge strings. The medium-gauge strings felt as tense as most heavy-gauge synthetic strings that I've tried, and were probably unsuitable for many violins. On the other hand, the light-gauge strings feel about as tense as most medium-gauge strings that I've tried. I like them better on the violin in question than the Obligatos that replaced them. They're just as refined, but warmer and more brilliant. Even gut-like. A number of professional violinists I've spoken to about the light-tension strings have shared this opinion.
  6. I once ordered a 140mm tailpiece from Johnson String Instruments outside of Boston. www.johnson-inst.com
  7. I disagree with Kolovrat's comments about Zyex--I find them to actually be relatively thin (though a bit hard in feel), find them to be fairly powerful. I find them to be refined and warm in sound quality--but not overly so--they're quite a bit more brilliant than Crystals, Pro Artes, Aricores, etc., in my opinion. Not so different from Dominant--but less gritty, and a bit warmer and more refined. I do also enjoy the light gauge strings on violin (I find the medium gauge violin strings are unusually heavy). The thing that I don't like about these strings (and I don't like one or two things about most strings) is that the change in volume as you move closer to the bridge seems somewhat unlinear. Gets loud pretty suddenly. I remember I had this issue with Pro Artes, as well, years ago.
  8. Hello, A violin that I recently purchased at an auction (Slosberg in Philadelphia) is easy enough to bow, but the left hand has to work unusually hard (push extra hard) to stop notes on all four strings. Does this mean that the issue probably isn't the bridge, but the nut...or something else? Strings are pretty standard...medium Dominants w/ Gold Label E. Thanks!
  9. Andy, Do you find that you need to play closer to the bridge with weich Obligatos vs. other medium strings? I tried weich Tonicas that I liked very much, but I didn't like how I had to bow significantly closer to the bridge to get a big sound. So I left the A and put a Dominant G and D back on. Thanks! (other) Andy
  10. I disagree--if medium Evahs woke the instrument up compared to medium Obligatos, I might think that would be an indication that the instrument likes strings of higher tension. Also, I wouldn't think heavy-gauge Obligatos would be much more tense than medium-gauge Evahs. I would give them a try. These things don't seem to be so intuitive. I tried medium Tonicas on a violin I acquired, and the sound was thin and muffled. I tried weich Tonicas (thinner gauges are often associated with a thinner sound), and to my surprise, the sound was much fuller and more resonant., although not louder next to the ear. By the way, I also like Zyex, and find them to be a fairly dark string, though still somewhat brilliant--somewhat like Obligato, but with a different texture.
  11. You can get a chromesteel-wrapped Aricore A (never tried one)
  12. Rix2357, Yes, the weich Evah A (I'm talking about the synthetic one--there are two Evah A's, one steel and one synthetic) should sound less bright and warmer than the mittel one. Definitely worth a shot. Or, have you tried the mittel Evah steel A? I like that a lot...not so different from your Jargar, but should blend better with your other Obligato and Evah strings. On my viola, I'm using Evah mittel A (synethic) and weich D, G, and C. I wanted a brighter, more powerful A, so I chose mittel. This is the only synthetic A I've found that's powerful enough to be an acceptable substitute for a steel string. Andy
  13. If you want to stick with synthetics, you might want to try Zyex strings. They're fairly brilliant, but not too much so, and fairly clean. They won't be as bright as your Evah C, though.
  14. Thanks to all for the replies--I'd considered an SAS chinrest in the past. I'll take a look again, and at Buddy Spicher's website.
  15. Does anyone know of anyone who makes these? I'm searching for an unusually tall chinrest, and live in the New York City area. Alternatively, I wonder how much taller the chinrest could be made simply by putting more cork underneath the rest...I'm guessing not much because it could become unstable? Thanks! Andy
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