What rosin for Evah Pirazzi?

April 8, 2018, 12:21 AM · I currently am using Evah Pirazzi strings on my violin, and I would like to purchase a new rosin, since the one I own doesn't really please me. So, the question is, what rosin would suit my violin strings the best? Should I buy a Pirastro rosin, or maybe some of the Kaplan rosins? If ou have a personal preferrence for a specific rosin and you are uaing the same strings as I am, please tell me!

Replies (22)

April 8, 2018, 3:14 AM · Hi Mona, Google Warchal String's rosin test and there is a lot of interesting information there which you might find helpful.
Edited: April 8, 2018, 7:10 AM · Whether or not the Warchal results are THE BEST rosins, from my own experience with these 3 rosins I believe you will not go wrong if you take your advice from them. It would have been nice to know how much time they spent on each rosin test, because rosin performance does change with time - so something that starts out as a fantastic rosin can either become too grippy or too slippy after a certain amount of playing. Also the temperature/humidity of the environment in which you are playing can affect the performance of any rosin.

I used Andrea and (it's identical forerunner, Tartini) for years. I preferred the Symphony grade to the Solo grade because it was less noisy under the ear. It was definitely very good in resistance to rosin buildup on the strings - so I could play a 2 hour session without noticing a change in tone production.

More recently I have also tried all 3 varieties of Magic rosin, all 6 varieties of Leatherwood and the new Andrea Sanctus that provides two different rosin characteristics (as concentric cylinders) within the same cake. The latter two brands are list-priced at "luxury" levels. The Andrea Sanctus seems to me to provide maximum static friction and minimum sliding friction so you get potential for a really big tone because the bow can produce a maximum vibration width/amplitude of the string and yet (because of low sliding friction) allow that width maximum freedom until the rosined hair grabs it again.

These days I am playing on Evah Pirazzi Gold violin strings and alternating between Leatherwood and Andrea Sanctus (viola grade). I guess I am still trying to decide which of these is working better for which instrument and which type of music.

April 8, 2018, 7:14 AM · What is the rationale for the Sanctus? Is the inner stuff accessible from the beginning (so you get two grades on your bow at a time), or does it somehow percolate from under the outer, harder layer?
April 8, 2018, 7:32 AM · Mona, I guess you will be pleased by the Oliv-Evah rosin by Pirastro. Otherwise I would suggest any other sticky and maybe dark rosin with Evahs, they need the stickiness. Last time I had them on, I was using the Eudoxa Rosin (which I use with my regular combo of Dominant and Eudoxa E and is less sticky and lighter in color) and required much more...Another option could be the Vision rosin by thomastik, but really sticky and "grabby".

April 8, 2018, 8:05 PM · Andrew, what did you think of the Magic rosins?
April 9, 2018, 7:00 AM · ROGER
I like MAGIC rosins and used them for a year or two on all 3 types of my instruments. I shared them with a string quartet and others I played with at the time and many of those people subsequently bought them. The ULTRA may be too grippy for violin but the two less grippy grades produce great sound and hold the string well for spiccato, etc. The small MAGIC rosin cakes are relatively inexpensive and very convenient for keeping in a pocket during a performance if you need a touchup.

I suppose the rationale for the ANDREA SANCTUS cake is as you suggest, to apply two kinds of rosin at the same time. Of course you can also do that by applying rosin from two different cakes - something I have done in the past. So perhaps it is just another gimmick for suckers like me. It will take more months before I find if the soft inner rosin becomes untouchable while only the harder outer is being applied. I should confess that I have only purchased the cello and viola versions of ANDREA SANCTUS, not the violin version. (I seem to prefer the more robust rosin versions for my violin playing too, since I recall hating Liebenzeller I and using the Liebenzeller III for violin too, although when I used regular Tartini and Andrea rosins, I used the versions named for each instrument.)

April 9, 2018, 12:30 PM · Andrew, which Leatherwood rosin are you using for your violins? Crisp, supple or a bespoke blend?
April 9, 2018, 1:01 PM · Peter, I have both crisp and supple for violin, viola, and cello. I have been using both of the violin rosins for violin, but I select which one depending which of my violins I am playing, the specific music and the ensemble. I tend to use the crisp in a larger ensemble - to better hear myself.

Also, at times I have mixed the two grades to try to get the best of each. I started using Leatherwood a year or two ago, before it was being sold in the USA. I bought all 6 of my Leatherwood rosins when they announced their half-price sale.

April 9, 2018, 1:26 PM · "..perhaps it is just another gimmick for suckers like me". Sorry Andrew, but you said it and I think you're right. It's repellent to me to think that choice of rosin dictates whether my sound is "crisp" or "supple". When I need to balance and blend with different enembles my method is to play a bit closer to or further from the bridge, use more or less arm weight, faster or slower bow speed etc. I'd love to know if any really fine string players are this precious about their frictional aid.
April 9, 2018, 1:36 PM · There is a difference between the two Leatherwood recipes. In the summer, the supple is pretty unremarkable. Come dry winter-time, and it has a lot more to offer. Whether that is enough for you to try one (or both) is another question.
Edited: April 9, 2018, 7:34 PM · When I played Evah (green med) on both violin and viola, I liked Andrea soloist or piacere or a mix depending on the day, season, etc. I tried nearly a dozen standards before that.
I now prefer Salzman 3 for both, now w/ Kaplan Amo med.
April 9, 2018, 11:16 PM · Edward - pardon my scepticism, but did you wash your bow in between rosin types? If one's preference varies according to the day, season etc as well as the brand of strings, isn't it just as important to match the rosin to the music one is playing? After all, we certainly want to make a different sound for Brahms as compared with Mozart. So should we all carry a caseful of bows? It will take a persuasive voice of authority to persuade me this isn't all just superstition.
April 9, 2018, 11:20 PM · I think Andrea rosin is good for bright strings.
April 10, 2018, 9:06 PM · I can hear a difference in my sound with different rosins, but from what I can tell, other listeners cannot. I think under the ear it may be a string-noise / extraneous overtones influencing the impression more than anything else.

Different rosins do have a subtly different feel in grip, but so does different horsehair.

April 10, 2018, 9:22 PM · Steve: I was one of those "rosin is rosin" guys for much of my playing life, but I did start experimenting with rosins about 20 years ago and it changed my mind. There are big differences, at least these days.

But it's no really big thing. I can afford rosins - my cars are 18 and 25 years old - and I don't drive them very much so rosins may be my luxury.

April 12, 2018, 12:42 PM · I "married" to the old Piere Guillaume rosin a bit more than a year ago. Love the volume, low dust, balanced attack, and tonal characteristics. But I agree with Ms. Leong that most (likely "all") audience members won't be able to tell, as they don't possess your own bow arm to appreciate how it feels to US, the players. They are more likely going to be impressed (and listen more to) your bow control and artistry than whatever rosin you may be using. But since it helps US, and we do feel and hear the difference, we ought to find the rosin that better suits our instruments/strings/technique/setup.

Most decent rosins can be used professionally without any ill effect, beit Millant-Deroux, Salchow, Andrea Solo, Baker's, et. al. And yes there are "marked" differences, but again, who can tell (other than yourself) unless they are used to listening to you every day play with the same tools, and knowing the way you usually sound? And even then, I am sure few would pass a blind test.

The Andrea Solo is the more "grabby" I have ever used, and it indeed pulls a big tone (so to speak-all depends on the player), but one does not "need it". I do not really use it anymore, even knowing it does make a "noticeable" difference. There's no best rosin other than the one which works for us very well. That said, maybe EPs, that are rather stiff, would benefit from such a "grabby" rosin, used in moderation.

Edited: April 12, 2018, 4:58 PM · Vienna’s Best is great, mixed with Andrea Solo ocassionally. Warchal is right, I’ve tried several rosins the past few years and this beats them all.
April 12, 2018, 6:46 PM · yes, i did when testing.
April 14, 2018, 8:02 AM · Maybe if I did likewise I might get converted but I think I'd rather stick with my prejudices! I can understand that serious players have serious concerns about their equipment but I think it would sound a bit precious for an amateur to be this particular. I just got back from a quartet weekend in which the violist and cellist were for different reasons unable to bring their own instruments and had to make do with my viola (too big) and my cello (very ordinary) not to say my bows with my Chinese rosin on. I heard no complaints, although maybe the standard wasn't quite up our usual pitch of perfection.
April 15, 2018, 10:12 AM · being an amateur is VERY underrated.
April 15, 2018, 11:21 AM · I don't mean to demean amateurs; it's just that with so many factors to consider even before we start playing I don't think it's a good idea to introduce yet another one. OK, everyone has the right to experiment with their rosin and form a preference, but I don't want to be distracted from the main issue which is the noise I (put that in bold italics) can make on my instrument. And I really wonder whether the great violinists of the past gave their rosin a single thought.
April 16, 2018, 8:05 PM · The idea of "luxury" rosins may, or may not be a marketing abracadabra, but that different rosins change the sound and may fix some weaknesses of it, it is easy to notice. And not always going from a cheap to an expensive one.

More than once I have had a problem getting an even sound from particular notes to the point of thinking about changing the string, the setup or even the bow. And then after applying a different rosin rescued from the "discarded accesories" drawer, the note and the string "resurrected".
Like I said, this has not always been by trying a more expensive one. Just another.

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