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Anyone used Oliv rosin for a long time, then found a near identical alternative?


Aston4

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I’ve been using Oliv for 20+ years, mainly because it has good stickiness, and makes very little dust compared to others I tried around year 2000.  Also what dust it does make, is easy to wipe off, even years later, and doesn’t embed in the varnish of the violin.  Yes I am that lazy, I wipe off the violin every two or three years.  Not exaggerating.

 

Lately I think Pirastro is insane with their pricing.  Also their recent Oliv rosin is now machine made (was handmade) and on synthetic cloth that feels nasty compared to the previous soft cotton cloth.

 

So I’m just looking for an Oliv substitute, that’s similar in stickiness, similar in low dust, and let’s me quit supporting Pirastro, a company now seemingly run by accountants, marketers, and consultants.

 

Please reply only if you’re super familiar with Oliv and it’s qualities.  I’ll probably end up sticking with Oliv, but if there is something else out there more or less exactly like it, but made by a different company, I’d love to hear about it.

 

Also if there is an almost exact alternative to Evah Pirazzi Gold (gold G) strings, for the same reasons above I’d like to switch away from those too.

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  • 1 month later...

I use Gustave Bernardel Rosin. I think I used pirastro rosin at one point, but I cant remember. I find Bernardel to be quite good. For strings, you may want to try the Gamut Tricolore G string. It is so rich and powerful, just get the G string if you don want to go full gut. My instrument has the Tricolore silver wound G, gamut gimped D string, gamut varnished A string, and a Golbrokat E string. I love the sound, and tuning has not really bothered me with using gut, even though I am in a humid climate. I think you should give it a shot if you can.

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I am unsure what specific Oliv rosin you reference as I remember there being a few different varieties, but for the same reasons that you posted, I kept my Oliv dark for over 20 years and used only performances.  Still have half a cake!

As to Bernardel Rosin, I like it but it does not have the stickiness that my Oliv dark has and only use Bernardel for my gig bow and my Mozart bow.  

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5 hours ago, violinnewb said:

I am unsure what specific Oliv rosin you reference as I remember there being a few different varieties, but for the same reasons that you posted, I kept my Oliv dark for over 20 years and used only performances.  Still have half a cake!

As to Bernardel Rosin, I like it but it does not have the stickiness that my Oliv dark has and only use Bernardel for my gig bow and my Mozart bow.  

There is, and has always been, only one Oliv rosin. It used to be more greenish, but same name, same properties.

 

 They have changed the box and form though.  It used to be in a round, hard, form fitting box without cloth.  That was my favorite.  I was sad when they put it in the flimsy cardboard box somewhere around 2003.  I’m still sad about it, every time I use it.  What is the cloth around the rosin  even for?

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Rosins are essential. But the types of technique, environment matter.

As are varied rosins, so are the player's techniques?

Rosins types do overlap. Depending on the player's needs, how aggressive or lightly plays, and the desire to activate the bow... to put this in perspective, and I value your earnings as much as mine, the cost of a cake is significantly lower over time than anything else. Strings, then cakes. For a set of crappy European strings, I can purchase at least 3, maybe 4 types of rosin.  

The playing style might matter? Smooth is better? A Cecilia type, might be considered? Interestingly, some lighter rosins are exceptional but might produce more dust.

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I used Oliv/Evah rosin for a long time (starting in the 1990s).

I'm a fiddler, not a violinist, playing Irish traditional music and American old time, but the Oliv rosin worked well for me under all playing conditions. Good grip and tone, with almost no dust.

I few years ago I tried Andrea Solo rosin (on the recommendation of a friend, and after reading internet reviews). The Solo rosin is pretty much identical in performance to the Oliv, in my experience. It is handmade, and comes in a MUCH better holder.

The Andrea brand rosin has recently been renamed "Cecilia" by the maker (Peter Bahng of Cremona in America):

https://cremona-in-america.square.site/

The Cecilia Solo rosin is available as a "half-cake", which is about the same size as a cake of Oliv, and a good deal price-wise.

I just found it on sale from Shar Music:

https://www.sharmusic.com/products/cecilia-solo-violin-half-cake-rosin?_pos=3&_fid=28f0c8ac0&_ss=c

You might want to give it a try...

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4 minutes ago, FidPup said:

I used Oliv/Evah rosin for a long time (starting in the 1990s).

I'm a fiddler, not a violinist, playing Irish traditional music and American old time, but the Oliv rosin worked well for me under all playing conditions. Good grip and tone, with almost no dust.

I few years ago I tried Andrea Solo rosin (on the recommendation of a friend, and after reading internet reviews). The Solo rosin is pretty much identical in performance to the Oliv, in my experience. It is handmade, and comes in a MUCH better holder.

The Andrea brand rosin has recently been renamed "Cecilia" by the maker (Peter Bahng of Cremona in America):

https://cremona-in-america.square.site/

The Cecilia Solo rosin is available as a "half-cake", which is about the same size as a cake of Oliv, and a good deal price-wise.

I just found it on sale from Shar Music:

https://www.sharmusic.com/products/cecilia-solo-violin-half-cake-rosin?_pos=3&_fid=28f0c8ac0&_ss=c

You might want to give it a try...

Ah, thank you, that is exactly what I was hoping for!  Unfortunately you probably won't see this reply for quite some time, as it seems my posts, as a new user, seem to take several weeks before they are approved by moderation.

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21 hours ago, Aston4 said:

Ah, thank you, that is exactly what I was hoping for!  Unfortunately you probably won't see this reply for quite some time, as it seems my posts, as a new user, seem to take several weeks before they are approved by moderation.

Please let us know what you think if you give the Cecilia Solo a try. It's really close to the "old" Oliv in appearance, grip and lack of dust.

I haven't bought a new cake of Pirastro Oliv for 5 years or so. I'm surprised at the recent change in manufacture and packaging. Looks like your post saved me from disappointment...

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On 11/13/2023 at 12:26 PM, Aston4 said:

There is, and has always been, only one Oliv rosin. It used to be more greenish, but same name, same properties.

 

 They have changed the box and form though.  It used to be in a round, hard, form fitting box without cloth.  That was my favorite.  I was sad when they put it in the flimsy cardboard box somewhere around 2003.  I’m still sad about it, every time I use it.  What is the cloth around the rosin  even for?

That is the one I have.  No cloth.  My box eventually became dilapidated and I got a leather pouch for it.  Same one since I was in highschool.  Love it.

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42 minutes ago, violinnewb said:

That is the one I have.  No cloth.  My box eventually became dilapidated and I got a leather pouch for it.  Same one since I was in highschool.  Love it.

Oh, I'm jealous.  I was weirdly heartbroken when I dropped and cracked it, and couldn't get another.  Still am heartbroken.  Take great care of it, don't drop it :lol:

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