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Hamberger Adjustable Soundpost for Violin


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5 hours ago, Michael Darnton said:

I am not going to wade through seven pages of what looks like nonsense to find out,  but it appears that I might be the only person in this thread with any actual experience in the matter at hand.

I reset a fallen adjustable post from one of the several manufacturers who was kind enough to send me a kit of the appropriate tools and a quartet of samples to try on my own. People might refer to the chinrest/tailpiece thread currently running, where the bottom line of the thread should be read as that you don't change something without some resulting change. In this case, yes, the adjustable posts I tried sounded definitely different. The instruments sounded thinner, a bit similar to a very hard spruce post that was not well fit, which is probably what you should expect from a post made of a hard material which is not fit (points to Jerry for saying that ball joints are not the same as stable, cut ends.)

A friend who had also tried them suggested to me the one situation where he found them to be an advantage, so I tried several instruments with that problem, and though the specific issue was slightly improved, everything else was made worse. No one involved in the testing heard a bit of tonal advantage to the posts, though some technical aspects improved for the player--speed and response have already been mentioned. None of the testers wanted the post in their instrument, however, because of the tonal loss. Every one of these people was a player who was experienced playing a number of different instruments and was experienced in ranking them, not someone who had lived with a single one for years, and I do think that this kind of overarching experience makes a huge difference in tonal tests, which may explain some of the adjustable post "successes".

Regarding the danger aspect, the samples I tried had a fine thread and a very advantaged nut. I got no sense at all of the tension of the post. I think it would be easy to slowly jack the top and back dangerously far without any sense that the pressure on the violin had moved into the danger zone but I also think that most players would not want to make the adjustments themselves. I worry about helpful stand partners though, since those characters are always a danger.

Good evening from Germany and a peaceful First Advent. Those of you who don't know me - my father, Pal Molnar Sr., is the inventor of Anima Nova. I would like to state only three things at this point:

1. We have not sent any sample sound posts to Mr. Darnton, either.

2. When my father was installing Anima Nova personally, 9 out of 10 musicians, who tried Anima Nova, bought Anima Nova. A typical feedback can be read here: https://stringsmagazine.com/violist-cynthia-phelps-reflects-on-the-depth-and-warmth-of-her-gasparo-da-salo/

If you are in the mood, kindly listen to double bassist Joel Quarrington playing Bach's Cello Suite No. 6 on his Maggini here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D0wPe5wccQk or search for István Várdai's CD "Dancing Cello" on Spotify.

 

3. As stated a couple of times before on this thread: Time will tell.

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On 11/29/2019 at 6:58 AM, HoGo said:

The problem is that there are not set rules to measure what is better in violins (and simply cannot be set because too many variables and tastes) unless the difference is really vast (like between VSO and master violin). From experience we see that only the real improvements survived the test of time regardless of how their inventors reasoned. There are hundreds of gizmos that promised to improve sound on the cemetery of violin making. (Anyone remember Virzi tone producer? I believe even Heifetz? jumped on that train and made bold claims, but now it's all but gone and forgotten)

The grave yard of violin inventions is not unique.  It is difficult to overcome entrenched old technology.

I worked for many years in the new product groups in the research and development division of a large corporation.  It was generally accepted and anticipated that only one out of nine new product ideas would eventually be profitable and that the other eight would fail somewhere along the line of invention to commercialization.   Rather than having an aversion to failure, the culture encouraged risk taking because the benefit of a few successes greatly out weighed the costs of a paying a bunch delusional dreamers. 

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To echo Don's observation: once the strings are tensioned, the frictional force on the ball joints combined with the very small movements of the plates would render the joints effectively rigid, so no different than a simple spruce post in that regard.

Mass, vibrational modes, and the very slight offset at which the plate loads are applied to the post are the substantive difference between the Hamberger and a simple spruce post.

Something to keep in mind: when a spruce post is slightly adjusted for position, it inherently necessitates a change in how much it stretches the plates apart, and how the ends interface with the plates. One cannot avoid this given the plate arching unless one painstakingly changes the end fit and post length to replicate the end fit and overall post load.

But when these adjustable posts are moved, they essentially replicate the snug fit and post load of the previous position. Be careful that you are not comparing apples to oranges, so to speak, when conducting tests of spruce versus adjustable posts.

 

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On 12/1/2019 at 1:43 PM, Pal Molnar said:

Good evening from Germany and a peaceful First Advent. Those of you who don't know me - my father, Pal Molnar Sr., is the inventor of Anima Nova. I would like to state only three things at this point:

1. We have not sent any sample sound posts to Mr. Darnton, either.

2. When my father was installing Anima Nova personally, 9 out of 10 musicians, who tried Anima Nova, bought Anima Nova. A typical feedback can be read here: https://stringsmagazine.com/violist-cynthia-phelps-reflects-on-the-depth-and-warmth-of-her-gasparo-da-salo/

If you are in the mood, kindly listen to double bassist Joel Quarrington playing Bach's Cello Suite No. 6 on his Maggini here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D0wPe5wccQk or search for István Várdai's CD "Dancing Cello" on Spotify.

 

3. As stated a couple of times before on this thread: Time will tell.

Another musician I can listen to all day or night.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ylpOO-7cyt0

 

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2 hours ago, Thaneadpol said:

Just come back to this old thread to say that my violin survives well. Still sounding as good as when the hamberger soundpost was fitted.

So what? Everybody else can now queue up to tell how many dozens of violins they have that work magnificently with proper sound posts, if they could be bothered..

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16 hours ago, jacobsaunders said:

So what? Everybody else can now queue up to tell how many dozens of violins they have that work magnificently with proper sound posts, if they could be bothered..

This is a good point. It's always supposed the new thing is better, but often overlooked that the thing which worked for 500 years is actually great too, when skilfully cut and set.

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