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jack
Hello All!

I just purchased a "practice" violin and I will be putting new strings on it shortly. This will be a trial and error as I truly have no idea what Brand of strings will sound the best on my violin. With that in mind, I know that some of you have "tried" different strings and some strings you liked and some you didn't. My question to you is what do you do with the strings you didn't like? Do you keep it on your violin and suffer with it until your next string overhaul or do you just put it aside and let it collect dust?

As far as I know, you can't return strings that you purchased and don't like the sound they produce. Since we all experiment with different strings, I was wondering if we could setup a "string exchange" where we would swap these NEW strings that we simply don't want to have on our violin?

This is just a suggestion, but I think it would be nice and fairly inexpensive to swap these NEW strings instead of letting them sit around. Not only that, it may save us all some cash on the long run when we are experimenting with NEW strings for our violin.

Please post your comments and/or suggestions. I'd love to hear what our community thinks.

jack
14 Responses
Posted: June 20, 2011
Last Comment: August 13, 2011
Replies

Beth Blackerby
Posted: August 13, 2011
Debra, that's a great suggestion for a tutorial. I can't believe we didn't already do that one.  I have a little bit of information on the subject in lesson 62: Tuning with the Pegs. However, as I went back and listened, I erroneously say "A peg" when I meant to say "D peg". That's around the 45 second mark. In any case, I'll put that near the top of the "videos to make list".

jojo
Posted: August 13, 2011
Debra, do a 'youtube' search, there's a few videos on the subject there ;)

Debra Farrow
Posted: August 13, 2011

What a great discussion on strings which answered a few questions for me except I am interested in a "how to" guide on how to put new strings on a violin.  Is there a video or a step by step guide (with pictures)?  I didn't see anything at first glance.  I am new to the violin world.

Eileen
Posted: July 11, 2011
Six months IS a long time on a set of strings Jo. But really I should be changing them every 3 or 4 months instead of 6...because those last couple of months they aren't at their best. But all in all, I'm very happy with the Obigatos, just wish they weren't so expensive ! <:-\

It's always such an incredible pleasure when I put on a new set ! I take it up to my private symphony (ala camode) and play my heart out ! LOL


jojo
Posted: July 11, 2011
maybe it's just what one person 'perceives' a 'long time' to be Eileen, because to me 6 months IS a long time LOL

so yes, I am very happy when strings last me 6 months, therefore to me Obligatos 'last a long time' :) LOL


Frank M
Posted: July 11, 2011
Hello Jack:

While, we're at it, we should have a an exchange for "rosins", also. I have quite a collection!

I currently use Vision "stark" (heavy) gauge strings. They are relatively cheap (maybe slightly over $40 at my local store), break in quickly, and hold tune very well, even through significant humidity changes. They feel easy to play. They have a "gritty", warmer sound on the G string.

Best wishes, Frank


Eileen
Posted: July 9, 2011
OH...once I caught a sale and bought 3 sets of Obligatos for $160. It was a great deal and nice because I didn't have to buy another set for almost a year and a half !

Eileen
Posted: July 9, 2011
I change my obligatos....hmm...at least twice a year, but would really rather make that 3 times a year. I play them until the A starts to unravel..it's always the first one to go....

I always try to time the change to a few weeks before a cantata...(Easter and Christmas) I always keep the old set and have lately been buying an extra A and just changing the A when it goes south.

They're expensive so I do whatever I can to make them last...and generally have to put up with less than stellar strings for a bit before I cave in and order a new set. I play/practice often so they probably don't last me as long as they would last someone else.


jojo
Posted: July 7, 2011
I never heard of Obligatos not lasting long.... I had them on my violin when I played 3 hours a day and they lasted me at least 6 months...(now I don't play 3 hours a day but I did a year ago or so ago). I never used Thomastik Infeld Blue, I have used Peter Infeld (from Thomastik) and did not 'get on' with them (they are expensive, especially with the option of the platinum E)

jack
Posted: July 6, 2011
Well the more I read and learn about strings the more complexity is added to the mix. Honestly I think we simply have too many choices. ;-)

My new practice violin is here and I think that I will try to put some Thomastik Infeld Blue strings on them. My principal violin has G, D, A Dominant and Pirastro Gold E. I probably could try the same on this new instrument, but I'd like to see what other strings sound and feel, so I'm going to venture out of the box. Being so new to the violin world I don't know if I can truly tell the difference between strings, except that once I changed the original strings on my main violin the sound was not as metallic as it was before.

Initially, I was going to try the Obligatos, since Beth and EMG have said that they really like them, but after doing some reading almost all of the review mentioned that they don't last very long, so I'm a bit afraid since they are pricey.

In any event, I know that strings that sound good in one instrument doesn't necessarily mean that it will sound good on another instrument. So, with that in mind, if any of you have tried Thomastik Infeld Blue strings before, I'd like to hear your thoughts and or experience with them.

Thanks in advance.   8-)


Sue D.
Posted: June 22, 2011
A violin maker did some work on an old violin I bought and he put D'Addario Helicore strings on my violin. I do like them. I then bought an extra set from Shar Products to keep as backup in case of breakage.

Beth Blackerby
Posted: June 21, 2011
Not sure. Al does all the buying, and it varies. The more you order, the cheaper they get. That's why string prices are higher for smaller shops. We can only order a small amount at a time.

Eileen
Posted: June 21, 2011
I tried Eudoxa gut strings on my violin before I tried the Obligatos. I really liked the Eudoxa....they gave my violin a very deep mellow tone, but....they were very sensitive to humidity changes and I was having to tune them all the time. They also didn't last very long so I tried the obligatos and have been very happy with them. As good as the Eudoxa (soundwise), stay in tune and last much longer.

I'm curious Beth...how much do a set of Obligatos cost "whole sale" ?


Beth Blackerby
Posted: June 21, 2011
Jack, generally, I think the good professional strings are all going to perform well for you. Trust me, if you start trying to discern subtle differences between brands, you'll never be at peace. Most brands sound just fine once they're "played in". The most expensive brands like Visions or Eva Pirazzi's will sound super bright and loud when you first put them on, but unless you're performing solo, I don't think they're worth the money. I use Obligatos mainly because they don't have that "breaking in" period like Dominants do. I'm too impatient to wait, plus I get them at wholesale prices. The only "professional" brand I didn't like were Tonica's.

I don't know what you've tried, but if you find something you like, I would just stick with it.

Interesting little story: a few months back, a colleague of mine tried Eudoxa, gut core strings and asked my opinion. She said they sounded so scratchy and could hardly stand them. I told her I thought her violin sounded unusually sweet and mellow. Like I said, the search for the perfect string will drive you nuts.

The idea of a string swap sounds like a good one though. I'll save my next set and mail them to you to try.