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christian bayon

Influence of post-Dominant strings on the levelling between Stradivari and modern violins.

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7 minutes ago, GeorgeH said:

One might imagine that his intonation would have been even better if he had had the benefits of modern synthetic strings and climate controls.

Dont forget auto-tune. 

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By the way, once again the cameramen should be shot. I was just marveling at his spiccato, looking closer to see what I could see, and what does the cameramen do, but decide to zoom out and give us an overhead view of the whole orchestra! I swear, no jury would ever convict me…

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12 minutes ago, PhilipKT said:

By the way, once again the cameramen should be shot.

Given the circumstances that we live in this country (and what just happened in Canada), I wish this expression would just go away. There are just too many human beings actually being shot.

Sorry, philipkt, nothing personal. 

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On 4/21/2020 at 10:25 AM, GeorgeH said:

40 years ago, I used to love a plain (unwound) gut A, but they were hard to keep in tune and seemed to break spontaneously.

I have not used them since.

Have more modern gut strings improved?

A good Olive set today sounds great and is quite durable.

But you do still tune a bunch. 

I love them.

A do think modern strings are help for some instruments that have the modern kind of driven character, instead of what I think of as the older blossoming character.

But a further aspect is that the modern strings are moving preferences around some.  Many musicians seem to know of nothing but the more modern character, and that is thus what they seek.   I'm not sure at all that this is a healthy trend.  But it seems a growing one.

 

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18 minutes ago, David Beard said:

A do think modern strings are help for some instruments that have the modern kind of driven character, instead of what I think of as the older blossoming character.

But a further aspect is that the modern strings are moving preferences around some.  Many musicians seem to know of nothing but the more modern character, and that is thus what they seek.   I'm not sure at all that this is a healthy trend.  But it seems a growing one.

Various individuals certainly do have their personal preferences. The preference of modern soloists seems to overwhelmingly be that of modern strings. I don't see any value in trying to convert them back to either old-type strings, or older playing styles unless one is hard-up to sell a violin which won't come up to current muster.

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Well stated David, my experience working on instruments and doing setups for some of the Baroque folks is that they endlessly mix and match to approximate the sound they are looking for. I don't know about newer, (current), technological gut string innovations. Some folks say, due to the chemical treatments used after the slaughter process, the strings aren't as strong/flexible/good as they used to be. I know that is one of the complaints from a couple European makers. I don't know about the manufacturing process for the Indian strings. The advantage with them is you can mix and match much less expensively.

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Many of my players in Germany are adamant about Olives. But in humid place they will worn out quickly. 

The Quartetto Italiano played with Spirocore strings to get the intonation they were looking for, avoiding gut strings.

I love the wide string choice we have today, although I think there is a trend towards too brilliant strings.

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49 minutes ago, David Burgess said:

Various individuals certainly do have their personal preferences. The preference of modern soloists seems to overwhelmingly be that of modern strings. I don't see any value in trying to convert them back to either old-type strings, or older playing styles unless one is hard-up to sell a violin which won't come up to current muster.

No doubt about this. Eventually everyone does try gut strings at some point, many get hooked and enjoy them, but usually leave them at home.

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I think the huger variety of strings makes it possible to adjust instruments in a more refined way eventually taking a complete blend of strings for an instrument. 

Among some recently developed strings there are some with a pretty amazing sound color, but I would not say that this is the main factor for contemporary instruments to get a sound close to classical instruments. 

If we look at the development of violin making between 1980 and 2020, it is just immense. 

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Its still clear that violins sound different with the same strings on, irrespective of whether we are talking Strads, Contemporary instruments, or any other kind of line up - so clearly although strings are a super-important consideration, they don't constitute all of the sound of an instrument at all, and there is ample scope for Strads to offer difference to other instruments in ways that are more appealing - just as out of two equally priced instruments one will always appeal more than the other. So in terms of whether Strads are being done out of the market by string technology, I think there is an awfully long way to go before that kind of claim can be made. 

It is interesting though that some of the qualities that are expressed as being characteristic of great instruments can be manipulated a great deal by new kinds of strings. I certainly see that there is a whole class of antique instrument that is given a new lease of life, because there are strings today that make them sound great, and make them punch well above their traditional reputation - Colin Mezins are a perfect example, which I am really being able to appreciate as a part of Great French violin making with certain newer strings, whereas they were the embodiment of mediocre when they had slower strings on them. I actually find that 90% of tonal adjustment can be done by finding the best string to suit a violin rather than messing around with the soundpost. 

So long as it keeps being fun, that's the important thing... 

 

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Waiter, this conversation isn't very good (see "The Meaning of Life"). Surely it isn't just the violin that the string has to suit but the bow and the player's style, before you even start to think about the repertoire and the venue. All these factors are interdependent, the outcome measure - player preference - purely subjective and potentially influenced by a dozen other things. Meanwhile the audience couldn't give a fig.

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On 4/22/2020 at 8:19 PM, Ben Hebbert said:

I certainly see that there is a whole class of antique instrument that is given a new lease of life, because there are strings today that make them sound great, and make them punch well above their traditional reputation - Colin Mezins are a perfect example, which I am really being able to appreciate as a part of Great French violin making with certain newer strings, whereas they were the embodiment of mediocre when they had slower strings on them.

 

May I ask which newer strings would you recommend for my CM Pere, since I am quite unhappy with the sound Dominant produces on it?

Just to clarify, I do like Dominants but at this particular instrument they are not doing well, and if changing the strings could make a difference, why not give it a try?

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1 hour ago, Dani Tsui said:

May I ask which newer strings would you recommend for my CM Pere, since I am quite unhappy with the sound Dominant produces on it?

Can you be more descriptive than "unhappy with the sound" and "they are not doing well?"

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Lack of responsiveness and power, not a matter of tone. 

Consider that a I have a small collection of 50 violins, and Dominants at 40 of them, so I am very used to their sound.

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3 hours ago, Dani Tsui said:

Lack of responsiveness and power, not a matter of tone. 

Evah Pirazzi or Vision Titanium Solo strings with Goldbrokat E 0.26 or 0.27mm.

It could be the violin, though.

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Well, I own 2 CM Pere, none of them seems to work with Dominants, and my luthier said that the bridges and sound posts are on the right place. This is why I am asking about strings, in the hope that some should do better.

Thanks for the advice on the Vision Titanium, will try them up.

 

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9 hours ago, Dani Tsui said:

Lack of responsiveness and power, not a matter of tone. 

Consider that a I have a small collection of 50 violins, and Dominants at 40 of them, so I am very used to their sound.

Dominants aren't far from the top in terms of responsiveness and power. You might be able to do a little better, if you are willing to spend enough money experimenting with a host of strings.

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9 hours ago, Dani Tsui said:

Consider that a I have a small collection of 50 violins......

That's a small collection? I have a small collection - I have two violins and it seems like plenty. There's just something a bit "off" to me about having 50 violins and calling it a small collection.

Some people filled their garages with toilet paper recently, and felt that it was a small collection given the present circumstances. Pretty much all of them have come to regret that now. But whatever, to each his own.

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3 hours ago, Dani Tsui said:

Well, I own 2 CM Pere, none of them seems to work with Dominants, and my luthier said that the bridges and sound posts are on the right place. This is why I am asking about strings, in the hope that some should do better.

With how objective Dominants typically are, it might be the case that you simply don't like these violins, and the strings aren't the problem.

I'd retain the Dominants and experiment with different E strings for now, such as the Jargar Forte, and Goldbrokat heavy gauge E, or the Westminster heavy gauge E for even more focus. You could also try something like the Pi or Rondo sets for an easier, more forgiving response.

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4 hours ago, Dani Tsui said:

Well, I own 2 CM Pere, none of them seems to work with Dominants, and my luthier said that the bridges and sound posts are on the right place. This is why I am asking about strings, in the hope that some should do better.

Thanks for the advice on the Vision Titanium, will try them up.

 

You could take them to a competent maker to have them adjusted to proper thicknesses. I said you could not you should - that is your decision. But this was very common in the 1960s-70s in Europe. Bit of a secret everybody knew. If I may ask : which orchestra are you playing in Brazil ? I have some old friends there I would like to reconnect with.

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