New Larsen Virtuoso Strings

December 20, 2012 at 07:28 PM · Has anyone tried the new Larsen Virtuoso strings?

Replies (32)

December 20, 2012 at 09:31 PM · oh no, even more strings...

December 20, 2012 at 11:14 PM · Are they guaranteed - I mean if you put thm on your violin do you become an instant virtuo

I find that passiones work as advertised....so?

December 20, 2012 at 11:42 PM · because I love Larsen Strings I will test them. Will write my impression next year ;)

December 30, 2012 at 12:14 PM · I got the set some days ago. I will switch one by one because of tuning issues. Yesterday I put the g on. Its a very powerful sound, but still too knew to say how it will sound settled. (very fuzzy overall still) Now I have the Larsen Virtuoso as g, Evahs for AD and an Westminster medium e. I will put the whole larsen set on my violin, just to check its potential. Pretty excited!

January 2, 2013 at 05:29 PM · I have now the GDA on with westminster E. Quite nice strings, but also a little thin... the D and A strings and also the sound.

Very good playability in higher positions on all 3 strings, compareable to PI. Very positive is the response to the bow. The strings can stand a good amount of pressure without breaking the sound. Not like PI.

I am curious if the sound gets bigger on the a string once it fully settles. I discover this always with EP.

If someone likes the PI strings, definetily check those out! Maybe they sound a little more bright, but with lots of power too.

If you like EP more than I would consider to only try the heavy version of the virtuosos, because soundwise the middle ones have less power.

I will wait how this set turns out in the long run and then decide if its worth to try the heavy version, buy middle again, or switch back to EP for A and D string at least.

January 4, 2013 at 11:18 AM · I just ordered mine (except for the E) in high tension. According to their website they are only slightly higher in tension than the average medium set, while the medium is a little lower, which made me think that the strong ones may be just fine and a better choice. I will post the results next week.

January 4, 2013 at 12:57 PM · actually after playing the virtuosos a few days and in an rehearsal I must say my violin never sounded better! They give a very smooth sound without being as breaky as the PI strings. Overall the Medium version is not very Edgy and powerful, but a really great string! Very easy to play and so pleasant in sound! I havent changed the E-String yet, but also the E-string sound benefits from the lower tension overall. I can totally recommend those strings.

January 4, 2013 at 02:23 PM · I need to see if they come in light gauge for my primary violin. With mediums it is incredibly 'loud'! Lights are fabulous for it and most players I know are surprised that that is the gauge on it. I may put a medium set on my other violin and see how that works out. It does real well with Pro Arte'. I look forward to other posts about these new strings.

January 4, 2013 at 04:20 PM · I didn't know that there even is light version of the virtuoso strings?!

January 4, 2013 at 06:45 PM · I don't think there is..

January 4, 2013 at 08:29 PM · It would be interesting to see if Larsen can hit it right this time with their violin strings. Up to now, their cello strings have been mostly very well received but their violin strings, by sales comparison, have consistently underperformed.

January 4, 2013 at 10:25 PM · I actually think, that this strings are one of the best I tried so far. They will prove themself with time, I am sure. And its very smart from Larsen strings to have the option of medium and heavy strings. I think the Medium is an great overall string for Orchestra, chamber music and performing solo with pianist. I am curious about the reports on the heavy version. But I am sure, it will be a great string. Since I first tried a Larsen String I wonder, why I am the only one around, who is actually playing them. Tzigane was very good, but a little too lose for my taste. But Larsen strings are coming from the right direction I think, wich is trying to make an decent sounding string with as low tension as possible.

January 4, 2013 at 10:44 PM · Simon, I see what you're getting at. If I'm not using plain gut I'll be using Larsen Tziganes, and I'm perfectly happy to swap between them at a moment's notice (but I don't mix). I think this shows that Larsen are using the lower tension approach, which I like. The new Larsens therefore are to bear in mind for my next string change.

In this context the new Lenzner plain gut also looks very interesting (there's a recent thread about them).

January 17, 2013 at 10:50 AM · Keeping this one alive to complete it.

After playing the whole Virtuoso set, including the e string for some time (I think two weeks) I am quite pleased. This strings are really interesting in their abilities but not yet perfect (of course).

positiv I find the low tension but at the same time the solid forgiveness for too much bow pressure. Soundwise on the bright side overall, but with a soft touch. The colours in those strings seem quite endless. I find that low tension strings like those also respond better to vibrato and subtle changes in vibrato. The lefthand playability couldn't be better... too.

The few weaknesses in this strings in my opinion are: The sound seems a little too bright and sometimes thin, especially on the a string... BUT I have not made any recording with it, so it could easily be an impression under the ear. The E-string to me is fine, but has a little too little bite. I think I will try a westeminster E with the set and be ok.

Fazit: While sounding a little bright and sometimes thin, those strings have a good core and made my violin sing quite well. The playability is outstanding for the left hand and the bow. This is also important and comes into play with sound production too and therefore make up for the bright sound. If one wants a big sound, its easy to produce with this string too.

But I am still looking forward for a review of the strong version.

January 19, 2013 at 03:34 AM · What color are the tailpiece and peg end windings of these strings? Same as the old Larsen violin strings or different?

January 19, 2013 at 04:01 AM · The tailpiece end is the typical larsen tiger colors, Orange with a Black spiral. The Peg end is a sort or beige they call Champagne. I have been playing in a set myself and have to agree with a lot of Simon's observations.

I will have a detailed review soon but my initial observations are extremely positive.

-Fantastic response and crispness. This may have to do with the lower tension than my usual favorite Vision Titanium Solo. I find them to feel even more responsive than the Peter Infeld, and have an edginess that I like, yet still offer the possibility of molding the sound easily.

I do agree that there is a danger of the sound being thin, but I don't think it's overly so.

If you are in need of something with amazing response to bowing and vibrato, I highly recommend them. They are also quite a bit more affordable than the Pi. About $75 at my site IUStrings.com

Again, I'll do a more in-depth right up in a week or so, but so far I am very impressed.

January 19, 2013 at 11:26 AM · the e-string has a light-blue colour at the tailpiece..

January 20, 2013 at 06:41 PM · ^True, I guess they like making the E's different.

January 26, 2013 at 01:46 PM · If they are better than PI they are also less expensive!!I will try them ,medium tension, as I liked before the regular Larsen..Only gostrings sell them for Europe?

January 26, 2013 at 02:10 PM · If they are better than PI they are also less expensive!!I will try them ,medium tension, as I liked before the regular Larsen..Only gostrings sell them for Europe?

January 26, 2013 at 05:10 PM · ^IUStrings.com has been shipping international since we started out 5 years ago.

January 26, 2013 at 07:25 PM · polychord also has them now. I purchased them over a very small shop, I don't remember the name.

I wouldn't say, that they are "better" than PI because they are too different to compare. Only in tension they feel equal. Virtuosos are much more bright and I think also louder, but you really have to try on your own beacause every violin is different and also the climate and rosin is important to match. I play with Bernadel btw and feel that the virtuosos don't need/take too much rosin.

January 26, 2013 at 09:04 PM · Thanks for the informations

January 27, 2013 at 09:56 PM · Musicians, how do these strings feel around 10th position? Double stops feel ok? Do you feel you are breaking sound too easily? Am I ordering a set to try on my fiddles? Ive heard some people say they have felt some drag issues under the bow - not snappy enough like Pi?

January 27, 2013 at 10:34 PM · "Am I ordering a set to try on my fiddles?" I am not sure about this... maybe you know better ;)

About high positions, the Virtuosos are fine. no breaking in sound. PI are much worse in that aspect. And actually many other strings I played too.

January 28, 2013 at 03:29 PM · You will have to forgive me. (facepalm) I had posted while fighting the flu HAHA. I really should be ordering the strings and giving detailed feedback rather than the other way around. I put in some orders and will give some feedback soon here in a few weeks once I get a good feel how they compare and decay in the first week or two.

February 3, 2013 at 08:36 PM · I finally put on my violin the A,D and G HIGH tension of the virtuoso (the E is a medium Larsen gold) this morning and after three hours of playing they are starting to settle down now, tuning being a little problematic for about an hour. You can tell that the tension is higher than average, they demand a little more catch to the string but they feel fine in my left hand. The sound is thick and brilliant, definitively more interesting than the dominant´s with PI A that I had before, but too soon for conclusions since all new decent strings always sound great the first few days. Let's see in a week or so..

February 15, 2013 at 08:24 PM · I have them now,since yesterday(medium)..my first impression:I like very much the feeling with the left hand,I vibrate easier,good response..maybe not as fast as with the Titanium of Thomastic..up to now.They sound metallic yet,so I will be pronounced better in at least a week later.I didn't try yet the E string.

February 15, 2013 at 08:49 PM · I had mine (strong set) for a couple of weeks now. They are ok, comparable to vision solo titanium at least on my violin, but maybe fuller. I like G and D, not so much the A, which produced a too thin of a sound for my taste. I changed it for a PI with much better result.

February 16, 2013 at 06:11 AM · I bought a set which I have been using several weeks on an excellent modern violin with a strong, bright tone. My overall conclusion is that I don't like them very much, at least on this violin. (On a dark sounding instrument they might be a lot better.) They have a very direct sound without much complexity, hard sounding to my ears. If you had blindfolded me and said they were steel strings I could have believed it. The sound is quite metallic when new, though this tones down after some hours of hard playing. They are very responsive under the bow and it's easy to play complex passages with little difficulty.

UPDATE:

Maybe I was a little harsh before. I moved the strings to a fine antique violin with a sweet but dark tone and they were much better. I rather like them on this second instrument. This 1805 instrument is good with Infeld Blue strings, which seem a reasonable equivalent to the Larsen Virtuoso.

February 16, 2013 at 12:33 PM · Frederik thanks for the review. Somehow you may be right. I am very pleased with the playability right and left but I am a little in doubt about the colours and sound of those strings.

I have them on my violin since around Christmas and have played a lot since then. I played in orchestras, ensembles, solo and with piano. I must say that the playability and responsiveness makes the virtuosos very practical. Easy shifts clear articulation and so on. In my eyes this is sometimes more important than the overall sound characteristic. Sometimes I also think that they sound quite good, with the exception of the a string, wich falls off in comparison to the other strings. The a string to me feels less responsive and harder to articulate, but the sound in higher positions and the playability are actually quite good.

I honestly feel that overall there are many more well rounded strings on the market than the virtuosos. But in terms of playability and at the same time reserving some positive sound characteristics of less easy to play strings they are very good.

When my strings are ready to change I will try a different setup. Maybe Obligatos or maybe some setup with D/G Oliv strings.

Btw. My violin has aquite dark sound and the virtuosos are good for compensating the lack of edge wich can come with too dark instruments.

One more point: I really feel that the virtuosos are very responsive to vibrato, wich makes me play with a lot of different colours and vibratos, they also react good to different bow speeds. I think the only contra (for me) is the sound characteristic and some times the too fuzzy (metallic) and not so focussed sound (on G string especially)

February 19, 2013 at 12:12 PM · I write back..I don't know what was happened before for the g string,it couldn't sound, but now it has back the sound!Maybe I have had too much resin on my bow.. the strange was that the other strings were ok..It should be My violin , because of the humidity change...I'll wait for one week yet and I'll give my final conclusion..

Update---4 Mars 2013

Definitely I don't like them,first they have no interesting sound and the D is very thin.Second I find the sound breaking under the bow..I cannot press a lot with my bow--(It's true that is very soft my bow).

All the medium price sets of Thomastic strings(Dominant,Infeld,titanium,vision solo)are much better,I find them less bright for my violin which is a modern but not too bright(un Amati copy).Even Zyex I prefer than virtuoso!

I can't make a comparison with the other larsens because I have had them one year before and at this moment my violin was in very bad condition..

I shall not try again other new sets,unless they are free trial!Did you try them finally..?

I advise to try the other Thomastic strings if you did'nt yet than the virtuoso..

Good chance!

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