Durable E string with warm sound?

Edited: November 24, 2019, 11:26 PM · Im getting frustrated with my girls violins E string. For some reason her fingers damage the Evah Pirazzi E string in a month :( Have no idea why, the string becomes dark where she presses the string and the sound goes unclean, even though we do clean the strings. And she eats healthily, no fast foods or excess sugars.

The E string is not expensive but it is harder to find and anyway, it would be much better to find a string that can handle her fingers for a bit longer. The other strings seem to last longer luckily.

So I came across an article recommending gold-coated E strings for corrosion. Any recommendations? She plays a 1/4 . Any other recommendations how to make the E string playable longer? And we like the sound of the Evah string.

Thanks :)

Replies (18)

Edited: November 24, 2019, 1:43 PM · I was pleasantly surprised by the Warchal Amber E, which is some sort of stainless or semi-stainless alloy. The medium gauge is a little tinny, but I imagine the heavy is a bit more warm.

The Prim Lisa E (stainless as well) is another good option.

November 24, 2019, 2:02 PM · The gold plated strings are definitely what you do *not* want: the gold wears off quite quickly.
November 24, 2019, 5:10 PM · This is a function of the composition of a player's sweat. Some players tarnish E strings very quickly. I can easily tarnish something like a Jarger E enough for it to go false within two weeks.

I found that the Peter Infeld (PI) platinum E string is extremely resistant to tarnishing, and I could keep one on my violin for months. It's $40, far more expensive than most other E strings, but it's cheaper than changing every two weeks.

However, the Warchal Amber E, which is a great string, is less than $10, and I've been able to keep them on my violin for as long as a year (at which point it was no longer optimal, but still fully functional).

If you like Evah Pirazzis, the PI platinum E will probably be a more attractive choice. It's a powerful, very brilliant E string. (My violin, which already is superb in the upper register, doesn't need it; the Amber E is perfect.)

Edited: November 24, 2019, 11:47 PM · Thank you :) Ill keep Pi platinum and warchal amber in mind for later, when I find them.

We have actually a current problem. She is taking part in a competition next Monday and the e string is not good now and no Evahs left and to make things complicated there is a postal strike, so I cannot order any. So what would you do? Play with the old evah or buy one of these:

There are these strings in a shop

Tonica Pilastro, Thomastic Dominant, daccario Helicore, Daccario ascente and Thomastic vision.

What is the best out of them or are they all as bad as Tonica Pilastros are? The Evah string is not totally bad, but it is definately not at its best, I would say halfway gone. I compared it to the last Evah e string I had kept and it still has some sound left but definately not at its best.

November 25, 2019, 1:14 AM · If they have the Pirastro Tonica E "wound with aluminum" in the shop, I would go with that one...imho.
November 25, 2019, 12:12 PM · I would not characterize a wound "E" string as being durable, IMHO.
November 25, 2019, 1:31 PM · For this instance just buy a Gold Label E for the competition, then think about tbis matter afterwards. Some people that have this situation just buy a lot of affordable Goldbrokats and rrplace as needed every few weeks. They are not too expensive.

Worth trying the Evah Pirazzi Platinum E, which is more affordable tham the Pi version. Two gauges, probably better to try the lighter one first.

Edited: November 25, 2019, 1:48 PM · I would get the Pirastro Tonica "silvery steel" E (not the aluminum-wound E), because it is nearly identical to the EP E string. It is the exact same material as Pirastro's silvery steel E for the Evah Pirazzi set, and is just minutely thinner than the E for the EP set.

(Note that there are two other EP E string options: the goldsteel and the platinum-plated. If you're using those strings, you're out of luck for easy equivalents from what you say your shop has in stock.)

Broadly, by the way, Pirastro is a top-notch string manufacturer (they and Thomastik-Infeld lead the market). Tonicas are their middle-of-the-line synthetic competitor to Dominants and are pretty comparable in materials, quality, and neutrality of sound. I frequently prefer Tonicas to Dominants on student-quality instruments. Tonicas aren't intended to compete with Pirastro's high-priced composite-core strings (EP, EP Gold, Obligato, and the gut-hybrid Passiones), but they're certainly not bad strings for a third of the price of composites.

November 25, 2019, 5:21 PM · Wouldn't the aluminum wound Tonica E be warmer than the silvery steel version? Can't speak to the durability...
November 25, 2019, 6:42 PM · My son has very sweaty fingers; we've been using Goldbrokat E from 1/8 to 1/2 now with good success. Recently he switched to Goldbrokat gold E which it's a bit warmer; both Goldbrokat paired well with Obligato on his instruments. With current black friday sales, Goldbrokat-$1.20 and Goldborkat gold-$3.16; we don't hesitate to string up a new E string every 2 to 3 weeks.
November 25, 2019, 6:54 PM · I was also going to suggest using Goldbrokat, regular or gold, and just replacing them as needed. 1/4 size Violin? I don't think you ever get a "warm" or beautiful tone until she grows into the 3/4 size.
November 25, 2019, 7:36 PM · I greatly prefer the Tonica alumimum wound E to the silvery one.
I've never happened to like that silvery E...
Edited: November 25, 2019, 8:43 PM · I'm not a huge fan of the EP silvery steel E either (and I certainly wouldn't characterize it as remotely warm), but since OP likes it, the Tonica E is the closest thing they can buy given what's in stock at their luthier.
November 25, 2019, 10:34 PM · I also recommend Goldbrokat. I'm slightly confused by the term "warm" since I don't tend to conceptualize the E string as ever having a particularly warm sound. If what you mean is that you want a string that isn't too bright (i.e. prioritizes the fundamental pitch over its overtones), Goldbrokat is a good choice. I haven't tried the gold variety but I'd defer to H Y on that.
November 26, 2019, 2:58 PM · OP's kid is on a quarter-size violin. The E strings on little violins are often tinny and harsh. I suspect what they want is something that just sounds decently resonant.

I would generally consider "warm" E strings to have less of a brilliant edge.

November 27, 2019, 12:06 PM · I like the gold label E by pirastro. Its unwound and lasts as long as my other strings. I play every day and change my strings every 6-8 months.
November 29, 2019, 8:52 AM · I second Joel here:
Lenzner-Optima Goldbrokat is a dirt cheap string, that works for many world class soloists. Just replace it every month or so.
November 29, 2019, 9:44 AM · The Pirastro No1, is a wound E, less bright than the wound E's in the Eudoxa and Tonica sets.

There is also the Dominant wound E, which I seem to be alone in liking, but then I am a violist..

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