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Old 04-07-2008, 03:30 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Need tips for my new electric violin

Hi
I've just bought a Bridge electric, along with an an aer amp costing 7 or 8 k each. The violin owns, but there are some things I don't know how to handle:

One thing is that no matter how gently I play, you can clearly hear the sound of the bow hitting the string. You can even hear my fingers when I press them down!

The second thing is that the sound is very coldish. Is this just the way el-violins are supposed to sound like? If that is the case, what pedals, or stuff like that are there, that can ""spice" up the sound?

Thanks in advance
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Old 04-07-2008, 04:01 PM   #2 (permalink)
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how is it you didn't notice the sound of the bow or your fingers pressing the strings while trying it out first? you did properly try it out before dropping the cost of a new small car on 2 pieces of gear right? or did you mean 700-800 each as opposed to 7000-8000?

either way, the sound of fingers pressing down on the strings with electric instruments isn't that uncommon. the simplest way to deal with that is to practice muting and attack techniques. muting with your fingering hand is usually done with a finger behind the one you'll be using the play the note. simply lay part of your finger over the strings to muffle their sound but don't actually press down on it. that way when you press down on the note the string is already muffled and the sound of your finger is less audible. otherwise you'll have to try to soften your attack so that you only press the string as firmly as you actually need to in order for the note to sound and let the amp do all the grunt work.

any electric instrument will sound cold to its acoustic counterpart. 'spice' is relative. maybe a little reverb would help. i'd suggest talking with the person in charge of stringed instruments (not guitars) at your local music store. they should be able to better advise you on possible effects. normal guitar effects 'should' work but they're made specifically to handle the frequencies of a guitar so while they'll work on other instruments you might notice a loss in quality in certain ranges. you might also want try some fancy footwork with a volume pedal to diminish some of the sound of the bow hitting the strings, especially if you can find one with a limiter knob so you can set the active range of the volume sweep.
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Old 04-07-2008, 05:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Listen to some Ed Alleyne Johnson, its an excellent demonstration of what can be done with an Electric Violin, a looping station, and some guitar effects. Well produced too.
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Old 04-08-2008, 03:08 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I did try out the violin at the shop, but I didn't notice the sound of the bow untill I came home.

So far I figured out that if I turn down the sound of the violin-amp, and instead turn up the Aer amp the sound up.

As for the fingermuting tecnique... I know its what you do on the guitar, but believe me, it is not practically possible, or effective on a violin.
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Old 04-08-2008, 11:20 AM   #5 (permalink)
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yeah definitely let the amp do the most work when it comes to producing sound. my cousin plays violin and is in a band with another guy who plays an electric one also. i'll try getting tips from them later this week, they play mostly country rock though so they can probably get away with a fair amount of noise though.
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Old 04-08-2008, 11:56 AM   #6 (permalink)
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yea get some pedals LOL
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Old 04-08-2008, 12:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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alright, so after talking with someone with pro experience he's saying at the very least start looking into pre-amps. even if it's just to go between the instrument and the amp. a compressor might also help spice up the sound especially if it's a full on electric violin as opposed to an acoustic/electric.

check around the web for Fishman, LR Bags for preamps. look into BBE - sonic maximizer for a compressor. you might have to step up to a studio rack mount unit for a good acoustic compressor though.
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Old 04-08-2008, 02:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for your help mr dave, it has been helpful. I'll check out some pedals, and preamps and compressors (just gotta find out what they do first[)
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Old 04-08-2008, 08:46 PM   #9 (permalink)
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it's all good. i NEVER plug any instrument into an amp without a volume pedal now. i just find it far too convenient to be able to control my levels without having to stop playing to stop using them.

preamps are used to boost the signal of your instrument and add a little 'spice' to its sound. some people don't even use amps for performances instead preferring to run the tone they get from their preamp directly into the PA system.

compressors are effect pedals similar to distortion pedals. they boost the gain of your sound and add an element of sustain. too much will make it sound fuzzy, but that's what most guitarist want hehe. i suppose if you want to pull a nigel kennedy and cover some hendrix you'd want to fuzz out hehe.

is your violin acoustic/electric or just one of those weird looking twirls of plastic (i mean this in the best way possible hehehe)?
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Old 04-10-2008, 08:09 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Ok thanks.

[i can't hyperlink yet... so just erase this and place "http etc"]stringmail.co.uk/images/instruments/bridgeviolins.jpg

My violin looks like that (just.. a different colour) I think its just a fancy twirl of plastic:P

Btw, any idea on how a wahwah pedal would sound on a violin?
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