New Arcus 20th Anniversary and T-series bows
Has anyone tried one of the new model Arcus bows? There's a new T-series as well as a "20th Anniversary" set of bows.
No, I haven't tried those. I'll just point out that it's amazing how subtle the gradations are in the Arcus line. There's the four different current models, some available with round or octagonal sticks, and in six different grades. Now they have the 20th anniversary special editions. Then there's the discontinued models, many of which are still available. You sure can have it your way. The problem is that it's pretty near impossible to get an entire range in the same place at the same time to make your own comparisons. I have three Arcus bows, the least of them in terms of price is my M-3, the first one I bought. I still think it's a good bow and I'm not inclined to sell it. I'm not sure if many people know this, but Arcus sets out to make a grade 9 (best) bow in every case, then they evaluate the finished sticks only after they're finished to determine the grade each will be.
One month ago at Mondomusica expo in Cremona (Italy) i tested for at least 5 hours Arcus bows with my violin.
I did in fact just try a 20th anniversary gold violin bow as part of my Arcus bow trials (been meaning to post an in depth update, will try to do that this week).
about a month ago,my teacher traveled to Italy in order to visit some exhibitions and symposiums.since he was a great arcus fan,we decided to buy a couple of cf bows.one for him and one for me and other students.he described the T bows that he tested exactly like this: great balance-very light-necessary bouncing for sautille appears with minimum effort-great weight distribution and balance but their sound is nothing that you can enjoy or call beautiful and that nasalized sound is all the way with you.he tested them on two violin with completely different characteristics. My understanding is,they're great bows in case of physical aspects.but they don't sound as good enough.
I think the CF interactions can be very specific to a given violin. I tried an S9 that sounded very good but not amazing on my current violin, for instance.
Mohammad, was your teacher referring to T-series bows specifically, or to Arcus bows generally? And did you buy any Arcus bows at all? My most expensive Arcus is a grade 6, an A-6 specifically, and my understanding is that the higher grades can be dramatically better, but my limited experience tells me that Arcus bows can lack a certain tonal lushness that better wood bows have, but the Arcus handling is such a joy. And they still draw a beautiful tone, somewhat unique unto themselves.
A JonPaul, or an Arcus, for $500?
These bow manufacturers have got y'all wrapped around their pinkie fingers. The 20th anniversary version probably differs from one of their regular bows entirely cosmetically. Wouldn't be surprised if their whole bow line was all the same stick, just different fittings, name, and price. Reminds me a bit of the "special edition" beers that occupy an end-cap case at Kroger. Pretty much the same beer you regularly drink but packaged in fancy-looking 20-oz bottles and given names like "brewer's reserve" and sold individually for $5-7 per bottle. For that I can get a whole sixer of Hamms tall-boys.
As I say, not a clue on the identity of the mystery Chinese stick. But the sound is really pretty good, and it handles as well as most things.
I could not agree more with Paul Deck, speaking of Arcus bows.
I used to own an Arcus Sonata that Bernd told me had an unusually good sound. It wasn't great on my violin, but I traded it to a player whose violin was terrific with it.
If you did not do, look for a Musing C5... You could be surprised...
I spent a while today trying what Arcus was able to send -- an S7, an S8 octagonal, an S9, a P8 octagonal, a P9, a T7 and a T8. The P-series bows feel noticeably heavier. The T-series bows have a distinctive balance -- they feel light but if you are lifting the bow and moving it for a distance you can feel the top and bottom-heaviness of the balance. They feel heavier than the S-series bows.
Arcus C series is discontinued. I don't believe there are many around (i just purchased the top C5 that is still listed as available in their site).
Here's a fascinating video where Bernd explains the evolution of the Arcus line over the past 20 years. I found it illuminating and well worth the 35 minutes run time.
The marketing of the video is effective and superb, especially for technology interested folks I would say :D
As far as i know this argument (i know personally Bernd Musing since 2012, and i meet him at least once a year), my strictly personal opinion is, as usual, to test things with ears, not with other people's talking running in the head.
I've tried a couple of 6-graded bows previously, and didn't like them at all. The 7-graded bows in this batch are definitely inferior to the 8-graded bows, but I'm not convinced that the 9s are better than the 8s. (This is for playing qualities alone, not tone, where the differences between 7, 8, and 9 seem minor.)
Lydia, I'd urge you to get an M-series to try too, before you drop your money. A high grade M is my dream bow because I just want to back off a bit from the hair trigger performance of the S-series. My A-6 is weighted like an S, but it has the stiffness of an M. I'd like to have that bit more weight, not to mention the performance of a higher grade stick. I'm not saying you should get an M, just that you should certainly try one. But you probably knew that already.
I think Arcus didn't have an appropriate M in stock. I actually like the sensitivity of the S. My usual bow (a Victor Fetique) is even more agile than that.
This is slightly on arcus topic so sorry If this is rude but I was wondering are these bows resealable because I’m looking to sell mine but not quite sure if they’re like normal carbon and just go way down in value or if they can be sold because my new viola is not fond of the arcus I used to love.
My experience of buying and selling them used is around 50-60%. Sold a P4 for like 650€, bought and sold an S6 for 1.200€, bought and sold an S8 for 3.000€.
Years ago, I was able to persuade another player to purchase my Arcus Sonata for the full amount I'd paid for it.
I thought I'd report back now that I've made a decision, ultimately not choosing to buy any of the bows I tried. I had the round S9 on trial for two weeks, and in the end I chose not to buy it because its balance point (and the balance point of the other Arcus bows I tried) was too low on the bow for my comfort.
See if someone can give you for a test a C series Arcus bow (not the low priced Musing production).
The Arcus S-series is the only one that is significantly lighter than wood bows -- about 49 grams. To me that's the only real reason to buy Arcus -- nobody else that I know of makes them that light.
Lydia, I'm truly amazed that you can bottom out any Arcus bow. They're all so much stiffer than any wood bows I've tried. But I respect your opinion, and your experience is far greater than mine. Could the S-9 you liked be rebalanced with a lead plug in the head to replace the wood one? Or if you wanted to go in the other direction, the titanium screw as used on the higher end Arcus bows could be replaced with a steel one as used on the lower end models.
In blind playing, both myself and my teacher ranked the bows identically (and my teacher was figuring that these were all bows in the $2k range like other CF bows he was acquainted with). I thought the difference between 9 and 8 was smaller than the difference between 8 and 7, but the superiority was clear between each tier in both sound quality and the playing qualities, across the models. I thought the 20th Anniversary was roughly the same quality as a 7-class. They seem to do a good job in classifying the sticks.
In that 35 minute video I linked to above (9/17), Bernd said that they don't consider slight variations in weight to be very important, but balance is critically important. That would seem to contradict what your dealer told you.
The dealer asked that question of Arcus, and relayed their response. I assume they
I very actively tried ARCUS bows about 20 years ago, early in their evolution. I was in contact with Bernd Müsing and tried a number of different bows (Sonata, Concerto and Cadenza, which were the only models at the time). The Sonata models seemed very similar to a CODA Classic (not yet named "Classic") that I owned, and the Cadenza was more than I wanted to spend. So I ended up with an ARCUS Concerto violin bow. It took me a few weeks to get used to it.
This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.