Strings & Bridge
Does the strings placement on the bridge influence the sound ? (closer or wider to the middle bridge espacially for E string Violin or A string Viola)
The strings should be spaced out evenly for playability. Can't really answer your question. Sorry.
I read somewhere that the cutouts in conventional-design bridges are intended to create equal-length paths for vibrations from all the strings to the top of the instrument. Therefore small changes of separation between strings will probably not have much effect on this.
@Andrew : I asked this question, because I mistakenly placed the D string in the place of the A string on my viola, and the sound of the D string was really less warm voluptuous sound... It sounded different !
The bridge transfers the string vibrations to the feet of the bridge and this transfer may be a bit different (low/high frequency emphasis and distribution between left/right feet) depending on where the string is connected to the bridge. The construction of a violin is not left-right symmetric (bass bar, sound post); it is optimized for the conventional string order.
Placement on the bridge was noted specificly by cellist Paul Tortellier in 'How I Teach .. Play." As I remember it, he stated that the inner two strings often sound muted compared to the outer two because of the construction of the bridge (,in that the center is stiffer and the outer are cantilevered out.) In my reading on bridge fitting, the sideways vibrations are converted into downward vibrations as they travel through the legs. Also, the heart partly functions to separate the pathways into the two legs. It stands to reason that the difference between the freedom of the bridge feet over the bass bar versus soundpost would also create a difference if you swapped the a and d strings.
Before changing my viola string set through wear & tear, I swapped the D & A. (The D would suffer from the A's narrower slot, so I didn't want to damage a new string.)