So you purchased your effects, amps, PAs, recording equipment and all the things you need to make your music as complex and as good as you want.
But there are a few things you should still look out for when you’re playing the violin using these electric manipulation devices.
First thing you have to keep in mind is that these effects where initially thought for guitars. The electric violin is still a new instrument and not many players venture to experiment what these instruments can do.
While the amplifiers, PAs and sound controlling and tuning devices are not a mystery as they are used to control all kinds of sounds, the effects were mainly used with guitars over time.
Among these effects, reverb and EQ are the two most commonly used effects with electric violins. The violin sound is very different from the guitar sound.
The difference between the guitar and the violin results from the way the sound is produced. The sliding of the bow on the violin strings produces a much more complex sound than the simple hitting of the guitar strings.
This means that the sound wave produced by the two instruments is very different, the violin producing a very complex one so the sound of the violin is much more sensitive than that of the guitar.
What this means for you is that the usage of some effects on the violin has to be mastered in order to achieve a good sound.
These hard to handle effects are usually the ones used to produce very strong guitar sounds like distortion, fuzz, or overdrive.
Even wah can be difficult to use with the violin but this particular effect can produce some very interesting sounds. Don’t expect to get it right the first time.
Reverb is one of the effects that can really improve the sound of your violin. However, as general rule regarding the use of effects with violins, you should always use your effects with restraint, with taste. This applies for reverb as well.
Using it with restraint can really improve the sound of a dry sound but using a too strong reverb can diffuse the sound.
Dynamic effects such as the compressor are rarely used by violin players as these they are usually used in fact to mimic the sound of the violin. However, using a very slight compression can make your bowing sound smoother.
Equalizers are widely used in music today. However, using an equalizer with the violin can be a tricky business. The general rule applies here too: don’t over do it. The trick here is to use fine tuning of the sound, slightly tweaking the treble and the bass.
As with all music related gear the best way to achieve the best sound is to experiment. You can only achieve the best results by perfectly matching your violin with the devices you use and the only way to do that is by trying out different products.
Some stores will allow you to try out a device before buying it and that’s probably the best way to do it.
You shouldn’t look at the lowest prices out there. The inexpensive equipment is rarely good enough for the complex sound of the violin.
If you don’t have enough money to spend on the best equipment you should buy nothing at all.