When is the right time to upgrade from basic student rosin?
Do you wait for it to break or do you use the block to the point where you can't use it anymore? Or is there a specific way to find out that student rosin isn't enough for you anymore?
Also when did you upgrade from student rosin?
Upgrade ASAP. Rosin is cheap compared to anything else you use on a violin, and it takes years to go through a rosin cake.
Hope your violin top is doing OK Violetta.
Any time is the best time to get an appropiate rosin which fulfills your needs. I don´t like the concept of "student rosin". There is cheap crap usually made from the leavings of paper production that should be avoided at all, instead of being sold as student rosin. The rest can be classified as softer / stickier and harder, with a wide spectrum. And then there are several speciality rosins in the higher price ranges (up to $40 and above) you really don´t have to care about. A proper rosin that works for you can be found well below $10.
Rosin is so cheap there's no reason to ever use "student" rosin. You can get a cake of Jade or other Millant-Deroux rosins off Amazon for about $10. Ditto many other high-quality rosins.
Bernardel is good rosin.
Salchow rosin is IMHO a great all-purpose rosin that is far better than the stuff that comes welded to a block of wood. It used to be what I call "cheap" at $6; it's probably doubled in price ($10-12) the past few years. If you are not playing on a VSO, you should probably upgrade to Salchow.
@ Paul: Bernadel is a great rosin! But just not for my combo...
The short answer would be: yesterday!
I use inexpensive Cello-grade Hidersine rosin on my violin and viola bows. I am suspicious about all those different versions of Pirastro rosin that match all of their different brands of strings. Is this a marketing ploy? Ideally, we would use a different grade of rosin for each string (E--G), which is impossible.
My favorite is the Peter Infield violin rosin. (The one that comes in a silver pouch.) It is expensive considering the size of it, but you don't need to use a lot and it goes a long way. The sound is warm, and it doesn't leave a sticky residue. Most importantly, I love it, because it gives a really nice calming smell of natural wood. It adds that much more to my practice everyday.
Thank you everyone so much for the information. ^.^
I really like mixing Vienna's Best and Andrea Solo (per Warchal's suggestion). A little pricey up front, but as long as you don't drop the cakes then you'll have enough rosin for a decade at least.
On a related note, is there any particular rosin that is better suited to gut strings? I've recently bought a Baroque violin, and my rosin is pretty old and cheap anyway, so I'd like something that would be good for my gut strung Baroque as well as my Dominant-strung modern violin.
I tried the Vienna's Best / Andrea Solo combination, since I was mostly using Warchal strings, and really liked the Vienna's Best but found a better combo with Baker's regular.
It's very important to buy 10 - 20 rosins. They won't do anything for a long time, but over time, they season the violin, and then in a few years, magically, your violin is sounding way better.
OMG, Christian! Good to know. Now this is the secret behind old Italians - they just were not able to produce consistent quality rosin those days and just used what they could get... I guess nowadays the brand doesn't matter either, as long as they're all different rosins and rather on the pricey side? You really got me into shopping mode!
When is the right time?
This is the review I posted at Amazon the other day when my search revealed they now sell Leatherwood rosins:
Andrew, that is some high praise=)
Hello, not directly related but I couldn't create a new discussion on this topic: I'm writing a work of fiction in which a violinist forgets his rosin and has to borrow the cellist's rosin. This takes place 200 years ago. Is there any difference whatsoever between the two rosins? Thanks!
Linda, cello rosin would kind of work, but not well. No professional would do that unless there was literally no other option. Might be kind of a humorous conundrum though, especially if a violinist was forced to use bass rosin.
Erik, I was just thinking that - if she wanted the most extreme effects Bass rosin would be the go to.. I've seen stuff that's basically slime before.
Actually, I did some research and learned that cello rosin is softer than violin rosin. Case closed! :-) Thanks, Michael, just saw your reply, appreciate it!
Thanks, Erik, yes, it's a quasi-humorous scene involving a little boy making his performance debut. :-)
Upgrade as soon as you can, Rosins are not very expensive.
Nuuska, I can tell by your response that you also have studied the secrets of the ancient masters. I wonder if you know the secret handshake...
Honestly, I see no reason why a player on a budget ought to spend $70 on (Leatherwood) rosin, when there are vastly cheaper good rosins. (Melos, cited by the posted above, is about $15.)
Christian... I have to admit, obviously there are things in life I still have to learn about, even if there may not be many of these for a smart aleck like me. So, if you'd be willing to share your wisdom...?