So visited Moseley Violins today. The home of Violectra. Came all the way from Israel to Birmingham, UK. Tried lots of violins, it was challenging not taking anyone home. But it really helps hearing the differences across different pickups and bodies in one place.
As a hobbyist its interesting how there are islands of knowledge for these things.
Dave was an absolute sweetheart, letting me try all of those for 3 hours.
So here is what I tried:
- Violelectra, 6 and 4 strings
- Novita german violin
- Glesser Carbon fiber violin, with aplificatoon
- NS WAV, 4 and 5 string. Also a second hand NXT passive older model
- Yamaha with funny shape (will update model when I am not pn train)
- Barcus berry true expression pickup on an acustic
They are all amazing violins. I think I like the solid bridges much more. Also there is a pickup which is super easy to install and has a good sound. If you keep moving pickups between violins, and you want one for your acustic get it!
I tend to prefer less acoustic sound, and the NS was really capturing, it really sounds live like it does in the recordings I’ve heard online.
The Violectra had a rich body sound. Dave makes the pickups himself, and I am wish he would sell them so I could use them with the violins I build. They have a wonderful full sound. And really don’t hear enough about them as you should.
6 six string Violectra made me feel like holding a viola de gamba, you really need to dig in to the lower F. Its amazing, but in such a short time, I couldn’t really get my orientation right to really do something with it.
Novita german violin - I really loved it. With a body and chin rest similar to the NS, but it wss light and cheerful. It has planetary gears pegs, which are really easy to tune. Brighter more acoustic sound, but really full.
The Glesser Carbon fiber violin was a little heavier than I would have liked it, Dave says its the inbuilt electronics. It had a good elecro-acustic sound, would not have been able to tell from a blind listening its not from wood.
Lots of NS reviews out there. What I can say is it sounds like the recordings I head. Sort of full yes synthetic sound.
Yamaha was mostly trying to sound like an acoustic. If you like that sound its a decent sounding instrument, I tend to look for charterer and it had less of that.
Barcus berry true expression pickup - Dave recommends it if you are experimenting and want to amp an acoustic. It clamps on to the bridge, and holds it making it vibrate less. You could just use a wood block and attach it to a violin you are building to try things out, all you need is two holes for the screws.
It seems you can also order it off Amazon:
Thats it for now.