Performa shoulder rest
Hello what do you think of Performa Shoulder rest. I play with a little sponge and always looking for the shortest shoulder rest if there is such a thing.
SHAR sent me an email announcement for it, and I followed up by watching the videos. I haven't tried it, so bear that in mind as you consider my thoughts. One thing I noticed is that it's designed for players who use a chinrest with the cup placed left of the tailpiece. I use a center mount, cup over the tailpiece model that I'm not inclined to give up, so the Performa is already looking like it wouldn't suit me.
I am in Greece, Shar does not dispatch to my country so i must find another way to get this shoulder rest. I don't have the opportunity to try it. I have Guarneri chinrest i think it is ok. Shoulder pads muffle the tone a little bit. I have a gelrest cut in the middle but it is a bit extreme low... I raised the chinrest with extra wood. I want a shoulder rest very light with 1,5 cm max 2cm high
Have you tried Viva La Musica? I hear it can go lower than a Kun.
Yes, i have tried the viva la musica. I don't want a fix angle to the violin. I want a flatter violin angle . Ray Chen 's shoulder rest probably is what i want but it is a custom prototype...
Huh. This might be kind of tricky... unless you use sponges, pads or something like Acoustagrip or Acoustifoam or adjust the shoulder rest legs for a flatter violin angle.
I'd like to try this SR. Its $47 for the "polymers" one and $90 for the wood one. I'm sure the wood one has better tone ...
I don't know why the wood one would have better tone. Both models are isolated from the vibrating violin body by "rubberized" material.
The wood one is lighter
Both Performa shoulder rests are light compared to my head which is also closely connected to the instrument when I play.
Now, i use a gelrest micro which i cut in the middle to minimize the contact in the back of my violin.
I have ordered a wooden Performa from SHAR and will describe my experience as soon as I have one.
I was just messing around about the "tone." Anything wood always has to be better than anything plastic for your tone, right?
Ray Chen said once in an interview that "Shoulder Rest kills the tone and pads kills the projection" i think he is right.
I don't think so. This kind of discussion is like the one about center mounted vs side mounted chinrests. And since neither the art of violin making nor terms like "tone" and "projection" are exact sciences (100%, or at least 33.3% measurable), the discussion could go on and on.
On my quest for optimal viola posture I was happy to learn about a new low-profile SR. Unfortunately, this is one more that goes very low on the bass side, but without an option for alternatively lowering the treble side. Will therefore have to continue my ongoing sponge-and-chamois experiments...
Nuuska, I totally agree with you. While rests may affect the sound, the difference is so little that it doesn't matter anymore. I just care about being comfortable. This topic is so controversial... It seems that getting an extremely low height on the chest (treble) side is difficult because most shoulder rests are designed to be higher on the chest side than the shoulder side. I think it's because most people need more height on the chest side as there's more space to fill. Some people require extra height on the chest side even if their chinrest is the apropriate height...
For a little while I was using the "comford" shoulder rest that attaches to 4 places on the lower bout. I used the plastic version for a number of years, then as the foam wore out, I replaced it with a metal version, which is heavier. I noticed much less responsiveness from my violin with the heavier rest which I didn't expect. I tried several different rests after that at the local violin shop and picked the korfker rest as that was by far the best sounding. As for chin rests, one thing to keep in mind in comparing side mounts to center (such as the flesch) is that the ear location relative to the violin is much different. That alone will result in a different perceived sound.
I can play with or without a shoulder rest, but I use a Pirastro korfker cause I think it helps the sound...am I nuts? It's possible it's all an illusion based on where your ears are in relation to the violin...but I honestly don't know.
Most of the center-mount chinrests locate the players jaw and chin in the same place as the left-mounts. With most (but not all) of the violins I have tried the left-mounts sounded better (definitely the ones I own). I did these "experiments" with a violinmaker friend and another listener in large venues 25 to 30 years ago.
Because I, like Andy, am insatiably curious, I too have bought a wooden Performa to try.
I too, purchased the wooden one and it’s to arrive today from Shar! I currently use the Korfkerest which I like a lot, but it’s a pain to get that exact fit! Too many options and I get overwhelmed easily.
My teacher got one and I tried it for the duration of my lesson today. I rather like it. It's low and the broad piece for support is comfortable. It's solidly stable without immobilizing the violin. I'll have to see, when mine arrives, how further adjustment might make it feel. I also can't tell at the moment how much it dampens the sound of the violin.
This is all interesting. I find the Performa significantly improves the ring and response versus the Viva La Musica Diamond, which, like Lydia I had been using.I find it more comfortable, and am not sure whether I want my shoulder rest to be any more immobile than the Performa is as some rests I have tried made the violin feel locked in to only one playing position. Jaime, I too have a long neck! I may see if we can get on the same gig as me if you'd be willing to let me briefly try your Korfker. I can't imagine shelling out that money without being sure I'd like it - but I take it you can return a rest to Shar if you don't?
Hi Ray! I'm more than happy to let you try it the Korfker!
You are all very lucky... I must wait because Shar does not dispatch outside US or Canada.
I used a Kun for many years on both violin and viola, and really the only complaint was that they tend to slip a bit, so I was always checking on the mounting position, which became a distraction. I think the rubber material on the newer ones is better. I did switch to the Korfker for viola a couple of years ago and love it! It is way over priced, but the materials are superb, it doesn't slip at all, and it is super light weight. Two of my friends (one violinist, one violist) both swear that it has improved their tone & volume. I agree. We could all be imagining things, but I don't think so. Perhaps it is the low mass, or the very tiny contact points, but there seems to be something to it. I plan to get one for my violin soon.
Guys, I think the reason why the Korfker is so expensive is because of the bendable wood technology and all the bolts and pieces that make it highly adjustable. I wish it wasn't so expensive, but maybe it just costs a ton to manufacture???
Thank you very much Larry!
Still using and liking the Acoustifoam: http://www.acoustifoamshoulderrests.com/
Acoustifoam is similar to arcrest
Acoustifoam and Gelrest Micro rests fasten to the back of the instrument by micro-suction. No elastic bands are needed. The varnish on some instruments may be too soft to tolerate this well for extended use - at least some have told me they suspect this.
My Padauk wood Performa shoulder rest arrived from SHAR this morning and I have given it a bit of a trial. I like it!
Thank you Andrew! Can you measure the minimum height over the shoulder? With the legs fully screwed.. Is it under 3 cm?
According to a posted Shar FAQ, the minium height is about 2.5 cm.
Dimitris, I just measured it. With the extra 0.5cm pad on it the top of the SR is a little less than 2 cm from the bottom surface of the violin, so with the thinner pad it would be a little less than 1.5 cm.
Thank you Andrew! I will buy this shoulder rest when i find it available in an EU store
I purchased my Performa (paduak)about two weeks ago from Shar. Like Jamie above, I didn't like it at first and seriously considered returning it. It seemed big and bulky compared to the Korfker rest I normally use. However, I kept trying it and now I like it very much. It is the only rest I can use that doesn't aggravate my shoulder issue. I fond I can play longer with this rest than even practicing restless. I don't find an issue with tone degradation at all and find it feels naturally comfortable. But as always, your mileage may vary.
If somebody produce a shoulder rest thin delicate and light like korfkerrest and low and flat like performa i think this might be the best of all
I've spent a practice session with the Performa wood rest now and have mixed feelings about it. My usual rest is a the standard Korfker, with the short feet.
I agree with Lydia that a low and lightweight thin rest would be ideal for someone who play with a thin pad and dont need bulky high rests. The low rest can be high with an extra high leg. A high rest can not be low...
Someone needs to convince Ray Chen to open-source his sr, especially the special "rice glue" he uses with his sr. Going from playing restless to sr, Ray's sr is definitely on the low side.
Nothing really to add since I haven’t tried it yet, but I really hope the rest becomes popular enough that they come out with a viola model. I can reasonably use a wide variety of standard rests comfortably on violin, but the Performa looks like exactly the type of design that would work really well for me on viola. Frustratingly it seems to be even harder to find low shoulder rests for viola than for violin (for example the Comford rest was only ever available in “tall” for viola), even though I would think that more people would need shorter shoulder rests for viola (I suspect the viola market is just smaller, so companies have to have reasonable success before they come out with a viola model).
Ingrid, according to a Shar FAQ posting, a viola version is expected in the new year. I think viola players need lower shoulder rests more than violinists because of the thickness of the instrument, yet the viola market is way smaller. Violin versions always come ahead of viola versions. On a personal note, I already have a fairly long neck and I need my Kun rest at lowest setting on viola whereas I can have it at medium height on the violin.
The Shar store responded that they don't dispatch outside US or Canada so i kindly send a question to mr Cyrus Forough fb page if he intented to sell his rest outside US or Canada. But he didn't reply... So i think i can't get this rest for now
After some experimentation I've decided that the Performa doesn't force me to hold up the violin in the same way. That means the bow doesn't make as solid contact with the string, which results in a less powerful sound. I could probably figure out how to make it work and it might eventually beat the Korfker for comfort in that event.
I broke down and ordered the Korfker so when I get it I'll okay another comparison between the two...
Korfker has new low legs? How low can it be?
Not quite as low as the Performa, but fairly low.
I don't have the Performa, but looking at it I wondered about two things: can the feet be adjusted to fit a small 4/4 instrument?, and how does the lack of rotation (tilt) of the feet (fixed screws and nuts assembly) allow for angular adjustments (perpendicular axe to the screw posts)? The SR being wide I could see this being an issue for a perfect fit. I think it may work fine for short necks where the angular variations on short feet may be negligible, but I am not so sure for longer ones however.
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