Straight versus Top Curved Bridges
In the thread about Bridge Height I began to wonder about the shaping of bridges. The bridge on my instrument is perfectly flat on the back (the side facing the violinist) and the top third of the front (the side facing the fingerboard) is sanded down to make a curve into a thinner top.
Many bridges I've seen are flat on both sides. Making the top the same width as the bottom.
Does this really have an effect on the sound quality? If so, why and if not why again?
My guess is that they can be cut either way and made to sound and respond properly for your violin. It's a bit like asking whether octagaonal or round bow sticks are better. Good octagonal sticks are better than crappy round ones, etc.
Somewhere I heard that fiddlers use straighter bridges. Not sure if that's correct.
Seems you're talking about electric violin bridges; they don't need tapered bridges because sound is transmitted electronically. The acoustic violin needs tapered bridge to vibrate in sympathy with the strings and thus transmit sound to the violin body.
The quality of the wood and the mass of the bridge have an effect on the sound. Curving the upper region of one part of the bridge is a way to adjust the total mass to some extent.
The way I see it, classical bridge cutting leaves the center area thicker to prevent warping and add stiffness in this vulnerable area, and the top area is thinned to "unmute" the sound. So normally there would be not only a curve (looking in sideways), but also looking down from the top (slightly).
Speaking of bridges, I just found these two dated (expert) inputs on the "STRAD Playing Hub"
I once lightened two bridge blanks to the same extent, but in two ways:
Re flat bridges - some fiddlers like a flatter top curve for ease of double stopping.
Anish, please read the original post. Despite the confusing subject heading,it is not referring to the top surface of the bridge, but rather the upper portion of the surface that faces the fingerboard.
That is why I posted my last remarks on the other bridge discussion too!