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Best strings by how well they stay in tune and response


mindsquirrel
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 Most of the information I read about strings, i.e. stringreview.com, do not say much in terms of responsiveness and how well the strings stay in tune. I have had enough trouble with gut strings staying in tune to disregard them entirely. Metalcore seem to stay in tune, but not as much as synthetics. Metalcores are not as responsive, but have a certain singing quality to the attack that can be very beautiful especially with a delayed vibrato. (metal core are also nice for balancing dark sounding instruments) Fastest Response: pro-arte and evah pirazzi. Staying in tune: Dominants.  Opinions?

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Zyex strings have always been reported to stay in tune well, for those who need it. But I don't know myself, I'm a compulsive tuner, every time I pick up an instrument I tune it no matter what. For practical purposes Dominants have always stayed in tune well enough to get through the longest symphonies and I've been able to manage with gut too as long as the strings have had enough time to settle in.

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The first time (not long ago) that I heard this query...I was surprised.  I didn't realize some strings 'stayed' in tune moreso than others.

 

I always figured that was the job of well-fitting pegs.

 

While I don't obsessively tune...I do check and tune each time before I play.  Some days...depending on the environment...the violin remains in tune...others days it might be a little off.  It's generally a little off after a trip in a cold car...lol...

 

But as was explained to me...some strings stretch more than others.  Okay!  Makes sense...

 

Now...if you have stretchy strings, ill-fitting pegs...and live in an area of environmental upheaval...my thoughts are with you... ^_^

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To make blanket statements about any strings with a particular instrument is kind of hard.  I tune every time I get an instrument out, it does not take much effort and you can make it part of your warm up.  I do not know of many classical players of violin or viola that use metal core strings except for violin E and Viola A.  Then again I don't know everyone.  It can get pretty $$$$ trying out a bunch of different kinds of strings, but it is the only way I know to really find out.  If you would let us know about your instrument and the kind of music you play that may help.

 

Yours Respectfully,

 

Dwight

 

DLB

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I find the metal wound gut strings, Eudoxa, Olive, Passiones etc will stay in touch very well once they've stretched out!  But that can take a while...however, it's well worth it ;).  

 

When putting on a gut string, I try to open my violin case and tune the instrument whether I'm playing or not.  If you do this consistently, four or five times a day, I find you can stretch them out sufficiently after three or four days...

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Wound gut is, for my taste, often the best bet also. As mmmm says, the stability is great - after they have stretched fully! Delightful complexity in those strings.

But instruments are so finicky. You'll have to accept that you'll spend money figuring out what's right for your instrument and style on your own, or you can go to a respected shop, talk to them about what you're wanting, and let them try to dial it in for you.

Maybe you'll luck out. A friend of mine who plays viola in the PAC NW ballet spent several months trying everything, only to discover that the instrument really just wanted red labels. But violas are weird.

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I have not really noticed a notable difference among synthetic violin strings for tuning stability. Except, except for Olive wound gut A string which I tried about seven years ago.It was the only string I ever had a problem tuning and I was tweaking it every ten minutes, it sounded great but went sharp or flat if I breathed on it. I loved the G and D and have been considering trying them again with a Warchal Russian A this time around.

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The Oliv A is infuriating.  I like the sound but have never used one where the metal winding did not start to separate almost as soon as I put it on....and I'm pretty sure it wasn't the nut or the bridge that was tearing at it ;).  Instead, I like a Eudoxa 3.75.  But again, not only do you have to stretch it, sometimes you need to play it in before the response really kicks in.  At that point, you'd be hard pressed to find a more expressive string...

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  • 7 months later...

I am new to the forum, but thought I would share my experience with the Warchal Russian A string. I am playing a well made Klingenthal violin, and previously had a plain gut heavy gauge Tricolore A string. My setup so far is a Chorda wound heavy G, Tricolore plain gut heavy d, Warchal Russian A, and Goldbrokat medium E. I was having trouble getting a good response with the plain gut A, skreetchy in the upper position and a little too nasal. The Warchal has an easier response with a nice smooth tone, not as bright and detailed as the Tricolor, yet the ease of play with the left hand opened up some nice vibrato, great dynamic range, blends nicely with the Lenzner E( I found the heavy gauge E to be a low string killer, the medium really opens up the low string response. Surprisingly, the plain gut D string blends well the Warchal, not quite as singing for double stops, but the mixture provides a nice gut flavor, but the response was so great, I can't stop playing Devil's Trill double stops, its so fun with this string. I am not sure what the overall string tension is with my set-up, but it is good for an old late 18th century violin, doesn't choke the response, it was important to get the correct string length behind the bridge though, too close at first and was really choking the response, it's great that you don't need a fine tuner for the Russian A, so that proper afterlength can be achieved. The string is rather thin compared to the plain gut, so I did have to raise the bridge height with a thin ebony veneer to restore proper bowing clearance. I really like this set-up, it turned my violin into a kind of a hybrid Gypsy-Baroque/modern tone machine, with flavours of each.

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