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sftokyo2016

Audio recording of real Stainer violin in old and modern set up

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Hi All,

 

As a follow up to my recent acquisition, I was wondering if anyone could recommend recordings of real stainer instruments in both baroque and modern set up, solo and ensemble?

 

I recently came across the clip of Jorg-michael Schwarz briefly discussing the different qualities of his stainer along with some lovely playing. 

 

I have noticed that my particular stainer-esque german violin has a bell like tonal quality to the A and E string. It is a very different to my ‘strad G forme’ copy. 

So wondering if this is a common quality found in the better Stainer copies. My friend’s Marchetti has a very similar quality on the A string so I was a bit confused how two very different patterned instruments could have similar tonal characteristics. 

 

Thanks,

 

 

 

 

 

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  My friend’s Marchetti has a very similar quality on the A string so I was a bit confused how two very different patterned instruments could have similar tonal characteristics. 

 

Thanks,

 

One reason - because all wood (of the same spices - from the same tree even) is similar, and yet not EXACTLY alike.

The same maker, making the same model violin, with the exact same overt measurements - out of wood from one tree or log? they will never sound exactly the same.

Very much like different models of the violin (Strad - Stainer) MAY sound very similar. Or not at all alike. OR - very different. Or perhaps partially alike.

It all depends on exactly what the maker does with the thickness-ing of the final plates and all of the other etc.'s.

 

Considering such is why violin making is a science AND an art - both.

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I can't help but be a bit skeptical about assuming that all violins following a certain "pattern" will necessarily have similar sound qualities. Real Stainers are quite rare violins, as I unerstand things. I know I've only had the chance to play on one that was widely accepted as authentic. One other, which was supposed to be, had a late Dario certificate, and I know some experts were questioning whether it was really a Stainer. From such a small sample, I could only say that the real Stainer I played was very nice, clear, responsive, and very similar to a rather high arched Amati I tried at the same time in the same setting. In any case, it was a brief trial, and I wouldn't draw any serious conclusion from it. After that, what does one consider a "Stainer copy?" The high quality violins I've known and played that some might call "Stainer copies" have included Widhalms, Stadelmanns, Carcassis, Tecchlers, a Peter Guarneri of Venice, Busans, Goffrillers, Guersans, Klotz', Pfretschners, a Laske, a Rombouts...but personally, I wouldn't call any of these "copies." I think of them more as "Stainer-inspired," because while they might take inspiration from certain Stainer-like features like f-hole shape or a certain idea of arching, they often don't resemble the data one can access of authentic Stainers in several key aspects that affect tone, like the actual arching, thicknesses, f-hole positioning, stop length and wood choice, let alone the "unmeasurables" like varnish composition and the possibility of ground layer effects. Those violins I've used that were "Stainer inspired," some for short trials, some for long periods of professional use, were very different in their sound and playing qualities, some deep and gutsy and some clear and "bell-like" as the usual Stainer prejudice goes. Years ago, there was a report in the Strad about a Smthsonian concert where a respected quartet played a concert on a set of Stainers and a set of Stradivaris, and the journalist reported how the Stainers surprised everyone in the hall by how deep and powerful they sounded.

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One reason - because all wood (of the same spices - from the same tree even) is similar, and yet not EXACTLY alike.

The same maker, making the same model violin, with the exact same overt measurements - out of wood from one tree or log? they will never sound exactly the same.

Very much like different models of the violin (Strad - Stainer) MAY sound very similar. Or not at all alike. OR - very different. Or perhaps partially alike.

It all depends on exactly what the maker does with the thickness-ing of the final plates and all of the other etc.'s.

 

Considering such is why violin making is a science AND an art - both.

 

Thanks. Out of interest. I wonder how much consideration, if any was placed on the scientific aspect of violin making all those centuries ago over the artistic aesthetics. (sure this question has been discussed on MN, so will have a sift through posts)

Having said that, I guess scientific concepts back then was very different to the knowledge base of today’s modern scientific approach and use of high tech equipment.

With regards to art, I suppose this is continually evolving.

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I can't help but be a bit skeptical about assuming that all violins following a certain "pattern" will necessarily have similar sound qualities. Real Stainers are quite rare violins, as I unerstand things. I know I've only had the chance to play on one that was widely accepted as authentic. One other, which was supposed to be, had a late Dario certificate, and I know some experts were questioning whether it was really a Stainer. From such a small sample, I could only say that the real Stainer I played was very nice, clear, responsive, and very similar to a rather high arched Amati I tried at the same time in the same setting. In any case, it was a brief trial, and I wouldn't draw any serious conclusion from it. After that, what does one consider a "Stainer copy?" The high quality violins I've known and played that some might call "Stainer copies" have included Widhalms, Stadelmanns, Carcassis, Tecchlers, a Peter Guarneri of Venice, Busans, Goffrillers, Guersans, Klotz', Pfretschners, a Laske, a Rombouts...but personally, I wouldn't call any of these "copies." I think of them more as "Stainer-inspired," because while they might take inspiration from certain Stainer-like features like f-hole shape or a certain idea of arching, they often don't resemble the data one can access of authentic Stainers in several key aspects that affect tone, like the actual arching, thicknesses, f-hole positioning, stop length and wood choice, let alone the "unmeasurables" like varnish composition and the possibility of ground layer effects. Those violins I've used that were "Stainer inspired," some for short trials, some for long periods of professional use, were very different in their sound and playing qualities, some deep and gutsy and some clear and "bell-like" as the usual Stainer prejudice goes. Years ago, there was a report in the Strad about a Smthsonian concert where a respected quartet played a concert on a set of Stainers and a set of Stradivaris, and the journalist reported how the Stainers surprised everyone in the hall by how deep and powerful they sounded.

 

Thank you for your interesting thoughts on the subject. I guess there are far too many variables to just pin down to the properties according to a certain pattern, as I am learning on MN.

I would love a chance to play on an authentic stainer violin.

 

My luthier friend, who is letting me trial a ‘stainer labelled’ violin, was confident of it’s potential tone quality and projection before even completing the restoration job. ( it had been sitting in the back of his paris workshop in pieces for 50 years before moving to Tokyo)

 

The new bass bar is kind of curvy shaped. While the neck projection and saddle height measurements have been adjusted to his specifications for high arched violins.

I have no idea about the ins and outs of this.. but the end result is a violin with a large projection, really deep G and singing A and E. Not sure how I would describe the D string though..

 

I don’t know. Maybe it’s just a lucky find. 

 

Anyway, this has all set in motion an interest into discovering the tonal qualities of an authentic Stainer. I may never know. 

All fun and games. 

 

Thanks everyone for the feedback. I’m very much new to MN and going through all the posts is overwhelming.

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Like you, Sftokyo, I'd jump at any chance to play a real Stainer, just as I jump at any chance to try any beautiful violin by a great maker. On the other hand, I wouldn't necessarily make too strong a connection between the violin you are trying and an authentic Stainer. The violin you posted was most likely not made as "a copy," with an authentic Stainer sitting in front of the maker while he made measurements and tried to make an exact replica. Your violin's relationship with a Stainer is a bit like that between, say, a Raffaele Gagliano and a Strad. Different century, different city, different source of wood, different construction technique, but a basic design that was handed down over several generations that might have started with a direct copy (or not), but certainly took on its own features over time. That said, there's no reason this violin couldn't sound very good, especially if it's been restored and set up by a first class luthier. If you've heard of the excellent violinist Peter Csaba, (he comes to Japan often to teach and perform) he used a violin like this (only in much worse condition) when he first came to France and won the concertmaster auditions that got his career started in the west.

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Some time ago (months or years?—can't remember) I bought and received the below-described disks (caveat; not Mac compatible, formatted for older Windows computers only) containing the images and recordings described in this link. — Kind of expensive for what it is, but I had the same curiosity expressed by the OP.

http://rperras.tripod.com/id51.htm

BLURB:
 

 

“I have compiled 2 digitally mastered cd's.  One of 50 images of Stainers Violins made during his life time .Included are 25 colored and 25 black and white Photographs .    
  
 

 

"The accompanying CD consists of 16 tracks of Baroque music played with original Stainer Instruments . The Viols, Violins and Gamba used in the music are included in the images disc. 

"…offering this unique collection for the low price of $55.00  USD             
This collection is unique and not found any where else but here   
  
 

To receive your 2 disc collectors edition contact  stainerjacobus@gmail.com ”

 

post-78640-0-05209000-1480069147_thumb.jpg

The Canadian-based owner of the site ("Richard Perras, violin Maker") appears to have made it a lifelong quest into Stainer violins.  He currently builds copies of Stainer violins, one at a time, very slowly, among other activities. 

Edited by BasqueViolinist
The link described in the body of my post is missing in the post as published. Moderated?

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