Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Violin Bow Buying Tips For Beginners - What Material Should I Choose?

Buying a violin bow can be a tricky process especially for beginners. The violin bow is one of the most important pieces of playing the violin and different bows will drastically change the sound of the violin and playability level. It is valuable to be knowledgeable about the bow you are using and what other types of bows are out there for the future if you were to pursue the violin for a longtime. The more experienced you are, the easier it is to tell the difference in sound.

Violin Bow Material
The first factor to consider when choosing a violin bow is what kind of material it is made out of. There are many different types of materials that explained below.
  • Fiberglass - This is the least expensive and worst quality material you can buy. They typically can run anywhere from $20-$50 and can work for beginners who aren't too serious about violin yet and aren't sure if they want to learn the violin long-term. Very often violin outfits that you buy online include these cheap bows as part of the package. These bows sound very stiff and any experienced violinist would hear the difference in sound immediately.
  • Brazil wood - These bows are a cheap quality wood that can be a good upgrade to fiberglass. They work well for beginners who are serious about the violin but are just starting. These bows can run anywhere from $60-$120 depending on the quality of Brazil wood and maker.
  • Carbon Fiber - These bows are very durable and have similarities to good quality wood bows. They are a lot stiffer, but have a good sense of cleanliness to their sound. These bows work great for fiddle players that aren't doing advanced classical techniques or for a more intermediate classical violinist. Carbon Fiber Bows run anywhere from $150 to $1,000 depending on the quality of the material and maker.
  • Pernambucco - These bows are the best quality bows you can buy because of the quality of the wood. Pernambucco wood is considered the most valuable and best quality wood in the world because of its ability to resonate and bend. Typically these bows are hand crafted by some of the finest bow makers in the World. Pernambucco bows range in price all across the board but usually start off at about $300 dollars. They can also be worth thousands of dollars depending on the quality and reputation of the bow maker.

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