Check your current condition and decide if it’s time to upgrade your violin.
Do you feel like your instrument doesn’t respond back to you? Do your teacher/colleagues say you are no longer evolving? Do you think your instrument does not sound right? First, make sure your instrument has a good setup with all the correct measurements. A perfect adjustment can make your instrument sound even better than before. Then if you still feel the same, I would suggest you analyze the following factors:
- Make sure it responds fast when you play.
- Have you ever thought if its ‘voice’ is your dream-like sound? Remember that the timbre has to do with the number of harmonics that the instrument produces.
- Is its volume enough for your playing requirements?
- Make sure your instrument has easy playability and allows you to achieve the ability to move quickly without it stopping you from evolving. The instrument shouldn’t eliminate your agility.
- The instrument should sound good in all registers, bass, mid and treble.
- It is vital that the instrument does not have so many wolf notes and that the notes come out clear.
- The sound of your instrument should come out easily; it shouldn’t have a closed sound. A good instrument is one that you can easily extract the sound from.
- Does your instrument have a good dynamic? It should sound as good in the playing of strong notes as in the piano/pianissimo.
If you agree with some of the points above, maybe it’s time for you to upgrade your violin and not let it hold you back. I know how musicians have a greater affection for their first instrument; however, if somehow it is not helping you to evolve, maybe you should let it rest, check that you have already mastered it, and move on to your next challenge!
Consider your unique needs when upgrading your violin
If you are looking to upgrade your violin, consider your unique needs. There are three different string classifications: soloing, orchestral, and chamber music. Each has specific qualities that will determine an appropriate model.
Soloists have the freedom to play louder – an instrument with a big volume will allow you to survive in a big concert hall, even with an orchestra behind you.
Orchestral and chamber musicians don’t need an instrument with the largest volume but one that will have a flexible sound, rich in overtones to match other instruments. They will need a focus on projection for ensemble playing since they are likely to be more affected by other instruments on stage or in rehearsal rooms.
When you’re learning stuff faster than your violin’s response time
You start to realize that however good you are, your violin is holding you back. When you are getting smoother and faster with your violin, the only thing preventing you from making a song out of your practice sessions would be how fast the violin can play what you are playing.
This may be a sign that you need to upgrade your violin to adjust to your playing style.
If you are no longer able to improve your skills on a particular instrument
It might be time to move on and upgrade your violin to an instrument with more ‘character’ or a higher finish quality to go beyond the level where you are currently on. That’s why many people like to upgrade their instrument once they’ve ‘mastered it. So, it actually comes down to the moment that you are ready and feel like your violin can’t handle the music you want to play.
A quality violin is more than just an object — it’s a musical tool that can inspire and bring joy to those who play it.
If you are not completely sure yet, get the right guidance before upgrading. Talk to someone with experience. If you are a student, most of the time, teachers will let you know once your instrument is limiting you to improve. In case you are a professional, your colleagues are a good source of feedback. The luthier will also let you know once they have changed all of what was possible.
Take good care of your violin so it will treat you well for years to come
If you’re a violin player, you know the importance of investing in a high-quality instrument. After all, good instruments can last your whole life. It is more than just a musical instrument—it’s your life partner. This is the reason why you should treat your violin right because one day, it might just treat you back.
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