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Does chinrest placement/material affect sound?


flaco
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I'm sorry if this is obvious to some of you. I haven't experimented much with it.

I've heard from some people that it does. For comfort reasons, I like to have my chinrest quite far to the left of the tailpiece. I had heard that it is better if the chinrest is in the middle clamped over the two sides of the tailpiece.

Also, can the material of the chinrest affect sound? Does it depend on the instrument? Oh yeah, does the tailpiece material affect sound too?

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Yes, the material, especially how heavy it is, will have a ntoceable effect on the sound. Generally, I've found that over the tailpiece chinrests tend to dampen the sound more than the side mounted chinrests. Unless your instrument is too loud (is this possible?) or nasty then the side mouted chinrest is preferred in my book.

Oded Kishony

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Every single component influences the sound of a violin (or any other musical instrument), some more than others. I have recently found the rosewood makes a slightly better fingerboard than ebony and in my opinion it looks better too. Even the manner in which shoulder rests and chinrests are attached make a difference.

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"--Does it depend on the instrument?--"

Yes, I think, It does.

If the violin is in right mode(balance), chinrest makes big difference and this is true for any object attached to the body of violin.

If violin is not in such a state, even a hammer attached to the body will not make much difference.

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I don't think anyone would doubt that hanging a big weight on something changes its vibrating properties. Violins are pretty complex, and there's a lot going on everywhere, including the tail end. My experience is that the location of the chinrest (over tailpiece, next to it, and exactly where) can have a lot of effect, but it can be varied, depending on the instrument.

It can stop a tonally undesirable vibration, which is good; it can clamp something you do want to hear, which is bad. I have a customer who can tell if his side-mount chinrest is more than a mm off from its usual location, by the effect it has on the sound. He found the location where the sound is best, after a lot of experimentation, and that's where it's got to stay.

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quote:


Originally posted by:
Michael Darnton

I don't think anyone would doubt that hanging a big weight on something changes its vibrating properties. Violins are pretty complex, and there's a lot going on everywhere, including the tail end. My experience is that the location of the chinrest (over tailpiece, next to it, and exactly where) can have a lot of effect, but it can be varied, depending on the instrument.


This is my experience as well.

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I agree, 'hammer' was not a proper object to use within the context of violin, or more than the necessary to underline what I wanted to say.

''--...but it can be varied, depending on the instrument. --"

I totally agree with this statement.

I think, If violin is not in a good acoustic state (not a good sounding violin), It may not be easy to detect the variations in sound for any change in chinrest itself or its position.

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"--Even very small changes in the tighness of the chinrest clamp will make a noticeable difference. Try it and see. --"

Honestly I did not think about it.

It may be very well effecting the surface tension, in addition to mass change on the body.

I will try.

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So Michael, David, and/or Jeffrey,

How do you feel about side-mounted versus center-mounted? (if you

don't mind my asking!   

Mostly I'm thinking of best-case sound, but I'm also interested in

which is less sensitive to placement (so you don't have to get it

'just so'), which is better structurally (is squeezing on the

bottom block better than squeezing on the ribs?), or such.

Thanks!

cassi  

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quote:


Originally posted by:
Cassi

So Michael, David, and/or Jeffrey,

How do you feel about side-mounted versus center-mounted? (if you

don't mind my asking!
IMG]   [IMG]

Mostly I'm thinking of best-case sound, but I'm also interested in

which is less sensitive to placement (so you don't have to get it

'just so'), which is better structurally (is squeezing on the

bottom block better than squeezing on the ribs?), or such.


On a new violin, given a choice, I'll always use center mount, just because I think there's less chance of damage if someone tightens it improperly.

On an old instrument, it might depend on where the varnish is messed up already, and where it's still pristine.

Sound of each style and sensitivity to placement seem to vary with the fiddle, so I won't attempt to comment.

Nor have I done extensive chinrest experiments in a hall. Results "under the ear" don't always extrapolate to a hall.

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quote:


Originally posted by:
Cassi

So Michael, David, and/or Jeffrey,

How do you feel about side-mounted versus center-mounted? (if you

don't mind my asking!
IMG]   [IMG]

Yeah, what those other two guys said.

I tend to worry about the comfort of the player first... and those that mount in the center do have the support of the lower block (which helps prevent problem associated with over-tightening), which is worth consideration.

The effect of sound seems to be varied (depending on the fiddle and the rest), so I there is no "rule" I can offer.

I can say that my favoite rest, personally, is a side mounted style called a "JD". Hard to get and a bit pricy, but nice. They are hand made in England, and so far, I haven't seen an Indian knock-off. I find them very comfortable.

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  • 2 weeks later...

quote:


Originally posted by:
Jeffrey Holmes

Ithose that mount in the center do have the support of the lower block (which helps prevent problem associated with over-tightening), which is worth consideration.


Is it the reason (or one of the reasons) why Guarneri style chinrest appears to be very/most popular? I have hard time with a chinrest sitting completely on top of the tailpiece, but am fine with Guarneri style chinrest.

Is there any "quick and dirty" guide to know when to stop tightening the chinrest lest it will crack the top?

Thanks a lot for the information.

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quote:


Originally posted by:
miles

Is there any "quick and dirty" guide to know when to stop

tightening the chinrest lest it will crack the top? Thanks a lot

for the information.

IMO use only a finger to pull the tools or

key or whatever you want to call. Use the strenght as you're using

your finger to wipe off dust on a dusty table (gently). No further

strenght applied throughout, and your action will stop

automatically (means you can't pull it further) when it's tight

enough. That's how I do it, normally that won't affect the sound

whatsoever. 

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Yes, I certainly think that chin rests affect the sound of an

instrument. Another thing to consider is that different style chin

rests will position the ears differently to the instrument so the

player might experience the sound differently....my own personal

feeling is that violins generally play their best sounds without a

chin rest!.....

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