Strad Huberman Poster


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Would it become a fact if something was measured with a microphone?

 

Depends what "it" is. :)

 

How would you verify that "very responsive to adjustments" is an actual fact, using a microphone?  

 

Perhaps I have become overly sensitized by too many opinions or even bogus information being posted as "facts".   Opinions of experienced, respected makers are perfectly fine and useful, but even those are still opinions.

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Some observations:

  • F-hole eyes are only 37.5 mm apart.
  • Garland taper reaches maximum height at the lower corners, not at the bottom block.
  • The garland CT scan fits my PG form except for some skew in the upper corner blocks with the treble being the worst.
  • Plate graduations are very thin. Look at the paper thin lower treble bout on the belly. Even the back plate seems thin.
  • Neck sides at the A-D pegs seems to be rather svelte
  • Two pins at the back button.

As for the poster I like the fuller details on the scroll/neck. The only data lacking are the rib thicknesses.

 

I think this is the best Strad poster to date. Even the CAT scans seems sharper than usual. Kudos to Sam Z. and the team.

 

Stay Tuned.

Mike

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  • 1 month later...

Mine finally arrived.  The first thing I did was look at the poster, and marvelled at the asymmetric back plate, low, smooth top archings, and some graduation details. My firs impression was that this was an attempt to make a more powerful bottom end and soften the high overtones for which Strads are usually known.  After reading the article, it's pretty clear that the high end is indeed not the usual silvery Strad sound.  This is probably lulling me into a false sense that I have some idea how these things work, and I expect that my next fiddle will dash all these ideas to pieces.

 

I wonder why nobody asked ;) so -- Don, would you care to elaborate?

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One of the drawbacks of being a digital subscriber to the Strad is that the posters are not included as part of the deal.

(Even a discount for additional purchase would be nice, Ariane?)

On the upside we do get our issues early!

Can't subscribers get the poster for free from the Orpheus store?

 

If not, why not?

 

Perhaps they need two form of digital subscriptions, one for digital only, and another for digital and hardcopy posters.

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I wonder why nobody asked ;) so -- Don, would you care to elaborate?

 

Arching:  ~14.5 mm, which is very low, and favors the lower frequencies.  Graduations:  Normally, Strad makes the central area of the upper bout thin, which is a major area of high frequency generation.  In this one, the thickest spot of the upper bout is in the middle, and overall the thickness of the upper bout is much more than usual.  All this looks to me like an attempt to kill off the trebel.  The lower bout is relatively thin, which should keep the low frequencies strong.

 

I'm using this poster to build my first violin.  Seems like it works great for that, but of course I don't know, what I don't know...

 

 

For the reasons mentioned above, I wouldn't use this poster, unless you want that particular sound which would be atypical for Strad.  Of all the posters available, I think the Titian would be the best one to copy.

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Arching:  ~14.5 mm, which is very low, and favors the lower frequencies.  Graduations:  Normally, Strad makes the central area of the upper bout thin, which is a major area of high frequency generation.  In this one, the thickest spot of the upper bout is in the middle, and overall the thickness of the upper bout is much more than usual.  All this looks to me like an attempt to kill off the trebel.  The lower bout is relatively thin, which should keep the low frequencies strong.

 

 

For the reasons mentioned above, I wouldn't use this poster, unless you want that particular sound which would be atypical for Strad.  Of all the posters available, I think the Titian would be the best one to copy.

FWIW, I like the Titian for its appearances. The Titian poster is very well done, too.

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I've finished the template and mold for the Huberman - is there anything I can do to improve the sound?  Make the upper bout a little thinner?

 

The outline is fine; it's the arching and graduations that in my opinion are not the best for general use.  Get the Titian poster and use those, or at least the concept.

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"The outline is fine; it's the arching and graduations that in my opinion are not the best for general use.  Get the Titan poster and use those..."

 

 

This fiddle is described in the Strad accompanying article this way:

 

"Tonally, this violin is robust and warm, with a singing brilliance in the treble range." 

 

Elsewhere in the article Joshua Bell describes the "singing sweetness on the E string" that had first attracted him to the violin.

 

Its described as one of the premier concertizing violins in the world.

 

But the top has thicker grads on the upper bouts than the bottom.  And that is wrong "for general use."

 

:blink:

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Perhaps I have become overly sensitized by too many opinions or even bogus information being posted as "facts".   Opinions of experienced, respected makers are perfectly fine and useful, but even those are still opinions.

 

 Odd, this sounds exactly like another current thread...

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"The outline is fine; it's the arching and graduations that in my opinion are not the best for general use.  Get the Titan poster and use those..."

 

 

This fiddle is described in the Strad accompanying article this way:

 

"Tonally, this violin is robust and warm, with a singing brilliance in the treble range." 

 

Elsewhere in the article Joshua Bell describes the "singing sweetness on the E string" that had first attracted him to the violin.

 

Its described as one of the premier concertizing violins in the world.

 

But the top has thicker grads on the upper bouts than the bottom.  And that is wrong "for general use."

 

:blink:

 

Do you think Sam is going to say bad things about a violin of one of his customers in an article?  I'm not saying it's bad... just that the clues point to it being atypical in tone for a Strad.  If you want to pick passages from the article, how about:

 

"...wam and resiliant response... contrasted with the crystalline sound of some other Stradivari violins with higher arching or stiffer wood."

"...we have tried a variety of ongoing modifications to the soundpost and fingerboard, as well as experiments with the bridge weight and tuning, to maximise the brilliance and clarity on the E string."

 

Reading between the lines, it appears to me that the brilliance and clarity is not quite there, thus the effort to get more.  And that's the way I hear it on the recordings:  responsive and powerful, but somewhat unStradlike in the clarity and brilliance department.  If that's the sound you want, by all means copy it... although it won't sound like the Huberman anyway.

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Don, it's a new year...  have you given any thought to being a bit more modest in your conclusions?  At all? 

 

Nope. :)   I'll continue to state my opinions as clearly as possible, with hopefully some reasoning and/or evidence behind them.  If you think there is any tone of ego or arrogance, that is far from the intent.

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Yes, that recording sounds nice.  It would be interesting to hear him play the same piece under the exact same conditions on a couple of other Strads, but otherwise it is mostly guesswork as to what is the instrument's capability and what has been done by the player or recording engineer to make it sound as good as possible.

 

In any case, I still believe that for a first instrument, this would not be a good choice to copy, with its abnormally low arching and somewhat unusual graduations.

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I would call 14.5mm arches low but not abnormally low, however I do prefer higher arches like 16mm.

 

For a first instrument, I don't think it makes the slightest difference whether they copy the Huberman or say, the Titian.

 

I have only made a couple of instruments with arching below 15mm, but from this limited experience I think it is clear that low arching favors the lower frequencies ... which also appears to be the conventional wisdom. 

 

I would not choose make a violin with 14.5mm arching, unless I had a really nice, farily dense set of spruce that was too thin to make higher arching.  I have not heard of any other makers that would go that low, either.  So, why do it?  I would recommend to even a beginner to try something that I think would work best, even though it will likely not turn out well.  But why not give it the best chance?  However, it all depends on tonal preference... if yours is for a warmer, deeper instrument, you might prefer the Huberman.

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