Jump to content
Maestronet Forums

What's the "best" shoulder rest?


shl821022
 Share

Recommended Posts

  • Replies 52
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Yeah there is that "buying blind" disadvantage to online shopping I guess.

I was originally thinking of just relying on an online dealer to order another KUN shoulder rest to replace the one I somehow lost. I've used this one before so there's probably not going to be any bad suprises.

But I got to thinking that maybe I could do better than the KUN. I'm in a situation where it's really inconvenient to go out to a store, so I'm looking to order online. I was just looking for suggestions to which shoulder rests are generally regarded as "good" even though there may be exceptions based on different people having different body types. Essentially I just wanted to test my luck and go with a rest that is known to be good for a good majority of people.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you can play without one, it really does sound the best. HOWEVER; some of us are very uncomfortable without a shoulder pad. Why not go to a store near by and check out which one feels the best? Many retail stores will even match catalog prices if you ask, but don't forget about shipping. Now,I use a piece of low density foam. cost: about 45 cents.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Simple answer IMHO.

Kun is top choice here, then Forte Secondo (NOT Primo).

Mach One has had disastrous results with posture (reliance on left hand) here - although some seem to like it, and most of the others ignore one basic principle which is this;

The shoulder side of the rest (for a normal student) should be as low as possible and the rest should follow the natural curve of your shoulder/chest in it's shape. The shape of the Mach one is very good but provides almost no support and slips terribly. The Wolf Primo is not rounded so intudes on the shoulder (very bad). All the others seem to presume that a 'flat' rest is good - how un-ergonomic is that. Anything which helps to get the violin flatter and stops slipping or excessive left hand hold is OK in general.

TD

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The Wolf Secondo and Kun are pretty popular because they fit well and are adjustable. Kun seems a bit flimsy, but I think they make a more robust one, and I think there is a robust, but more expensive imitation. Resonans is inexpensive, but I personally stopped using them. Basically, there is no substitute for trying one. You may have to buy more than one before you are satisfied.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've used a Wolf Forte Primo for 8 1/2 years. I love it. It's adjustable, comfortable (I have narrow, sloping shoulders) and NEVER falls off my instrument like I've seen those silly Kuns do with everyone I see using a Kun. What IS it with those, anyway? I have a Kun for my viola that I don't play that often and it falls off as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've used Mach I on both violins and violas and the first ones I had never slipped. However, some of my students acquired later ones and slipping was a problem. I wonder if there was a change in the material the feet were made of?

Anyway, there were various solutions. One fellow put Kun feet on his and the the results were good, another used sandpaper on the inside of the feet also with good results and a third put a little rubber cement on the inside of the feet and that worked too.

If you really like the shape of the rest, these solutions might be worth trying. I've always had to glue the foam pad to the bottom of the rest. The plain wood may be aesthetically pleasing but it is too slippery for me. Crazy glue did the trick for keeping the foam on and on one I glued a strip of suede as well.

Ron

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have tried 3 different shoulder rests. I have used a Kun, Playonair, and a Viva La Musica. The Kun was Ok but didn't quite feel right. The Playonair was not bad either just different and I still switch to it on occasion. The one I use the most is the Viva La Musica. Combined with an SAS chinrest it is very comfortable for me. With this combination I don't need to support my Violin with my left hand at all. I found it allowed me to be the most relaxed when working on Vibrato. With the others I am too tense in the shoulders.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've had good luck with the Kun Super, which I've used for about 10 years now; previously I had a couple Resonans. One thing that I like about the Kun rest is that it's adjustable for height as well as fit (I've found that my height preference has changed some over the years). As Gray Violiner mentioned it does fall off occasionally but I don't think it's any worse than the Resonans. I don't remember it ever coming off while I was playing, usually just when I was holding the violin getting ready to play! As far as online ordering, what about Southwest Strings (www.swstrings.com)? They seem to have a good selection & decent prices, plus a good reputation AFAIK. -Steve

Link to comment
Share on other sites

in response to gray violiner's post-

i don't believe one_tree_hill's post should instantly be dismissed, as it IS relevant to the original poster's question. from personal experience, i can affirm that the option of not using a shoulder rest is a viable option to one who may be currently unsettled with regards to their setup and/or equipment. i won't even bother getting into the merits of one side or the other on this debate, as it is quite tired and has been hashed out numerous times on this board. i just want to present it as a choice if the original poster chooses to try it.

i had used a shoulder rest for 18 years (a kun, if anyone is interested) until last year, when my shoulder rest started feeling quite uncomfortable. i tried every shoulder rest on the market...playonair, resonans, wolf, kun super, mach one, etc. nothing worked. i tried every chin rest i could find, to see if that was the problem. still nothing worked. i ended up developing tendonitis and a strained rotator cuff, and these problems persisted throughout the entirety of the year. frustrated with my endless shoulder rest search and physical ailments, my violin professor finally suggested that i try giving up a shoulder rest on a trial basis of 2 weeks. the pain diminished considerably, and i have not used a shoulder rest since then. additionally, it became much more comfortable and natural to play again, albeit after a quite long and frustrating transition period(it took me about 5 to 6 months to feel completely comfortable with no shoulder rest).

the purpose of this is not to rant from a pulpit, as i personally don't care if people use a shoulder rest or not. however, if one is having difficulty searching for a shoulder rest, then the option of not using one altogether should by all means be considered.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I used a Wolf Primo I eventually noticed that it is an aluminum plate with some firm spongy stuff on it. With a little determined effort, one may bend the plate to any number of shapes, and so approach a custom fit...

I originally got it because it seemed to suit my longish neck, and because the counter person at Shar's took one look at me and recommended it. Now I only play on borrowed fiddles with Kun or Mach One or whatever. The foolish ^H^H^H darling little things have their strings on upside down, and seem to be missing a C string.

regards,

Prentice

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I tried a half dozen different rests and for me the mach one is the best. I have two of them (on different violins and they never fall off the violin or slip off of my shoulder. They fit me so well that I can hold my violin without my left hand effortlessly. Naturally what works for one person won't necessarily work for another.

You really have to try different shoulder rest / chin rest combinations. Some online suppliers will let you order several of each and return what you don't want. I did that with Quinn's. It only cost a few dollars to return the ones that did not fit. The owner, Chris, even advised me on what he thought would be a good selection to test.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.



×
×
  • Create New...