Dominants on a Steiner?

September 7, 2022, 7:31 AM · I assisted a former student acquiring a 4/4 violin as her current teacher is on vacation and requested my assistance in the process.

Bottom line: she chose a Steiner. Lovely sound and she is adapting to the larger instrument.

It is fitted with what I consider "Shop Strings" and I'm a Dominant fan. But, I'm not sure that Dominants would be best for the Steiner.

I'm sure that there have to be more than a few here on that play a Steiner who can comment on and recommend quality strings that will work well with the Steiner sound.

Replies (11)

September 7, 2022, 9:52 AM · What is a Steiner??
September 7, 2022, 9:59 AM · Stainer?
A real one is 1-200k?
Otw, something labeled a Stainer would be a German import from 1890-1920 (Sears catalogue), and would likely benefit from brighter strings like Evahs.
Take pictures and go to for ID
September 7, 2022, 10:06 AM · I rather thought the Steiner would be the German one ...
September 7, 2022, 10:15 AM · Stainer(x2) is mentioned here: -
Edited: September 7, 2022, 10:47 AM · Is it branded below the button? Several makers of that name (not to be confused with Stainer) worked at Mittenwald and Markneukirchen in the 18th and 19th century, but the branded instruments that frequently turn up at auctions in the UK (name spelt either way) were probably made in Schoenbach c.1900.
September 9, 2022, 8:47 AM · My apologies for the spelling - the instrument is a Stainer copy with a square block brand on the back. High arched back and belly and a good mellow Stainer sound. It has some power albeit this will never be an instrument for solo performing with an orchestra.

My guess is that there are some people here who play these copies themselves and they might have suggestions for better strings.

It is a well made instrument that isn't as "forgiving" as her previous instrument (a Rumanian 3/4). She has to work on her intonation and finger placement. That being noted, when the fingers are bang-on, the instrument resonates beautifully. It also let's you know when your fingers are in the wrong spot - the note is there without the resonance.

September 9, 2022, 9:59 AM · I recently received one Stainer copy, the kind marked on the button, as a gift. It was stringed with Dominants and I think they work well. I don’t like the sound of dominants very much, but the truth is that the instrument responds well to them and it does what I want it to do. So far I don’tfeel like I need to change them… if it ain’t broken…
But I’m not a soloist looking for big sound…
Edited: September 9, 2022, 10:43 AM · There's been much debate on Maestronet recently about the labelling of antique trade instruments. We know full well that 99.9% of violins labelled "Stradivarius" are spurious but what of the ones labelled "copy of.."?

To make a close copy of any given model is a complex and time-consuming process that can only be performed by a highly competent luthier at considerable expense. The view of the experts on Maestronet is that this term was applied very loosely to late nineteenth and early twentieth century trade instruments, sometimes so indiscriminately that the same basic model may have served as the nominal "copy of" of more than one maker. Labels were intended more to adorn than to inform.

September 9, 2022, 11:51 AM · Sometimes I think "copy of" means more like "shaped like a."
September 9, 2022, 12:50 PM · For a Stainer copy violin, Dominants are a good place to start. Those violins are on average somewhat mellow and a little more bass-oriented, which can be excellent for fiddlers or jazz players. If you want more focus and a slightly brighter sound, I’d recommend Rondos. The only caveat is that as the string tension gets higher, there’s greater likelihood of the sound becoming strident or choked.
September 12, 2022, 11:30 AM · My violin was an unlabelled Stainer model, and before I agreed to the soundpost shift that led to deterioration and eventual loss of Stainerhood, it had a sound powerful enough to necessitate any grand I played with (piano, I mean, not Ariana) to have its lid fully open, and it was at its best with gut strings (I used Golden Spiral, but I'm not sure that before the sound post shift it wouldn't have been best with Eudoxa - The tone was getting brighter all the time - It had functioned during my childhood as my viola). I don't think Dominant were as good, particularly with the G.
In its new state I'm using Warchal Amber E and Evah for the others, but previously at its best, of the synthetics, Amber all round would probably have been best, the soundpost having to be closer to the bridge than ideally if the violin was not to deteriorate (because I'd fallen off a stage with it).

This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.

Facebook Twitter YouTube Instagram Email is made possible by...

Shar Music
Shar Music

Pirastro Strings
Pirastro Strings

JR Judd Violins
JR Judd Violins

Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases
Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases Shopping Guide Shopping Guide


Metzler Violin Shop

Southwest Strings

Bobelock Cases

Johnson String Instrument/Carriage House Violins

Jargar Strings

Bay Fine Strings Violin Shop


Los Angeles Violin Shop


String Masters

Nazareth Gevorkian Violins

Laurie's Books

Discover the best of in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews. Interviews Volume 1 Interviews Volume 1, with introduction by Hilary Hahn Interviews Volume 2 Interviews Volume 2, with introduction by Rachel Barton Pine