Hello there. This post will cover a few tips for violins. Whether you already have one and your new to the violin... Or you do not have one but your interested in mastering the violin... Its better to know these tips before trying to master it.
1. FIRST OF ALL. You must find a good violin tutor around your place. While its possible to master the violin without formal training, It will be one hell path learning it by yourself.
2. While there are many many brands out there... You want to buy a violin and your very confused, REMEMBER. There are some brands you want to avoid even buying... But I will not name them here because it might offend someone who already owns one.
And you might want to play the violin yourself before buying it. Just ask for a rosined bow and play the open strings. If you feel you like it... Its up to you. REMEMBER again... There are some brands... If not, MANY brands of violins that you want to avoid buying. Some of these brands will even sell their violins at $100-300. These are BAD ones. Often Chinese too, or called VSO: Violin-Shaped-Objects. While not entirely just a Violin shaped objects... A lot of second hand shops will sell violins made out of plywood. YES plywood. This is your worst nightmare.
3. Violins are made of Spruce, Maple, Ebony and Rosewood. If its made of plywood... Then your money is a waste. Disaster.
I have seen a shop that sells a Plywood-Made VSO. I seen myself. First play of the strings and it sounded like a dying elephant... Or even better, Nails being scratched on the chalkboard. I really did laughed at it, but the store owner dosnt know any difference between good violins and bad violins so he let me out of the shop.
Plywood. Seriously? Yep.
4. The second thing you should k ow that begginers must really do on the violin is to learn how to Change and Tune your own Violin strings. Just like the violin... THERE WILL BE some brands you might want to avoid. Those included are Chinese string brand. I know, I knoooow. Violins are an expensive investment... But it is worth it in the long run.
So, in the first week of learning the violin, Learn how to change and tune your strings.
Notes to remember: The tuning of the 4 open strings will be: G-D-A-E.
The G string will have a Black color code.
The D string will be Green
The A string is Blue or Light Blue.
E string will always be Red.
Many string brands will have drastic varying of color codes and even the designs. (mine having the G string on a Purple color code). The professional strings will have no color at all. If your a begginer... Do not buy it. You will likely confuse the D and A string resulting in snapping the strings due to over tightening it. Hence, you wasted your money.
5. Another thing you should remember. There is a light Rosin cake that will come with your new violin, THROW IT IN THE TRASH. Just buy a new rosin that will always last longer. The rosin that comes with your violin will only last for a few weeks and it will deteriorate.
-Note- same as the strings that come with your new violin. Throw it and buy new strings. (If you do not k ow yet how to replace strings, tell your coach/tutor/teacher to change it to you. This is why learning how to change the strings yourself will always come in handy.)
6. A few Do's and Do not's
1) Clean your violin every 2 months. It can be very dirty. Always.
2) Rosin Your bow every 1-2 days depending on your length of daily practice. (As an orchestra conductor and first chair in another orchestra, I rosin my bow every 2 hours. You get the idea of my intense practice.
3) Change your strings every 2-3 months.
The quality of your strings will reduce a LOT. From when you first buy it... To when your about to replace the strings. After 5 months, they will sound dull... Even if the strings had cost 1 million dollars (Which is only an example. No string set ever cost $1M).
4) Tighten the bow when playing, and loosen it when putting in the case and resting after practice. IF IT STAYS TIGHT, the bow hairs (Which are made of horse hair) will become loose, therefore, needing to rehair your bow after a short time.
5) Play any random songs in the violin if your bored and want to kill time... Its worth it than going on your phone/laptop playing addictive games. It will also help your improvement without knowing
6) Do play with a clip chromatic tuner on your first months of playing. It will help your intonation.
(There are world debates about playing with Fingerboard tapes or learning without. Your teacher might not recommend playing with tapes, then its FINE. Play with a Chromatic Tuner instead. Most new violin players will be pitch blind.
If your teacher recommends playing with tapes... Then its up to you. There are not firm studies whether you play with tapes or not will help you improve your intonation.)
1) Do NOT over tighten the strings, by obvious reasons, it WILL snap. Your first string that you will snap in your history will probably be an E string. It is the thinnest string and always a steel core string. Over tightening it by 1 to 1+Half Step will S*N*A*P the string. If you want to tune your strings, Practice on the strings that came with your new violin. Its OK to snap those. Bad quality sounding strings. Not worth keeping.
Well, this post had been long, and that's why that's what I will only cover for now. There will be a part two, maybe tomorrow or in the next days.
(PS. This whole post, I wrote purely in my phone *Insert Smiley Emoticon here* [?][?])
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