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Violin Strings

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Pirastro Evah Pirazzi Violin String Set Pirastro Evah Pirazzi Violin String Set

Evah Pirazzi strings are powerful and brilliant with a quick response.

Our Price: $105.09

Thomastik Dominant Violin String Set Thomastik Dominant Violin String Set

Dominant strings produce a warm, balanced tone and work well for a wide variety of instruments.

Our Price: $76.95

Thomastik Dominant Pro Violin String Set Thomastik Dominant Pro Violin String Set

Modern upgrade to the classic Dominant set

Our Price: $85.95
Pirastro Evah Pirazzi Gold Violin String Set Pirastro Evah Pirazzi Gold Violin String Set

Evah Pirazzi Gold strings produce a rich, warm, and powerful tone.

Our Price: $117.56

Thomastik Peter Infeld (PI) Violin String Set Thomastik Peter Infeld (PI) Violin String Set

Powerful soloist string set, with a rich, balanced tone color.

Our Price: $108.95

Pirastro Passione Violin String Set Pirastro Passione Violin String Set

Rich, complex sound.  Genuine gut strings.  Excellent tuning stability.

Our Price: $146.36
Pirastro Tonica Violin String Set Pirastro Tonica Violin String Set

Value-Priced strings with a professional quality sound.  Balanced Tone.

Our Price: $45.42

Pirastro Obligato Violin String Set Pirastro Obligato Violin String Set

Professional quality synthetic strings with a warm, rich tone.

Our Price: $121.02

Thomastik Vision Solo Violin String Set Thomastik Vision Solo Violin String Set

Excellent projection.  Balanced tone color.  Vision Solo produces a clear, warm, focused tone.

Our Price: $98.95


Recommendations for Selecting Violin Strings

High-Tension Synthetic Strings

Recommended for Players of Classical Music

If you seek richness, complexity, power, projection, wide dynamic range, and a wide range of nuanced tone colors, then consider a high-tension synthetic string with a composite core.

Genuine Gut Strings

Recommended for Professional Players of Classical Music

If complexity of tone and a rich, organic sound are your priority, then consider strings made from genuine sheep gut. The baroque player, seeking period-authentic, un-wound strings, should consider Pirastro Chorda. For everyone else, gut-core strings with metal windings combine stability and modern playability with rich, organic sound. Here are a few of our favorites . . .

Medium-Tension Synthetic Strings

Recommended for Players of Classical Music

For the classical player who finds high-tension composite-core strings too brilliant in tone, too high-tension for their instrument, or too expensive, a lower-tension synthetic-core string can be a great choice. Their ease of play and beautiful tone also make these strings excellent for students.

Budget-Priced Synthetic Strings

Recommended for Students and Anyone on a Budget

Too often, young players are held back by cheap, difficult to play, plain steel strings. For beginners, or anyone on a budget, please consider these excellent, value-priced synthetic string sets, which will be easier to play, easier on your fingers, and produce a much more complex and beautiful tone.

Chromium-Wound Steel Strings

Recommended for Fiddling & Fold Music

By far the most popular strings for that distinctive old-time sound are chromium-wound steel.

E String Selection

Although players avoid mixing and matching strings from different sets, the E string is an exception. Feel free to try different types and brands of E to see what works best for your instrument. The E is almost always steel, even with most synthetic and gut sets. The most common E for professionals is a tin-plated carbon steel E (Pirastro calls this silvery steel), which yields a round, brilliant, silvery sound and feels smooth under the fingers. Gold and Platinum plating will yield a warmer tone for the entire set, but will be more prone to whistling, particularly on better instruments. Aluminum-wound steel Es are commonly chosen when whistling or squeaking is an issue - the larger diameter of the winding gives the hair more surface to grip. Chome-wound E strings are often chosen to match the tone of chrome-wound fiddling G, D, and A strings. And, of course, the cheapest Es are plain, simple carbon steel.

Note that, with some exceptions, the E string in almost every set on the market is one of the above. So, even with the wide array of sets out there, if you wish to compare different Es, you need not try an E from every set, just one of each type; i.e. a tin-plated E from one set is pretty much the same as a tin-plated E from another manufacturer, barring slight differences in the quality of steel and the gauge.

For more, please see our Guide to Violin E Strings

Loop vs. Ball End

loop vs ball

Because the violin E string is so thin, it can be difficult to keep in tune. It is, therefore, typically given a fine tuner, installed at the tailpiece. (The other strings - A, D, and G - are typically installed directly into the tailpiece itself, though student instruments are sometime setup with fine tuners on all four strings.) There are two types of fine tuners - ones that accept "Ball" end strings (with a brass ring or ball attached to the end of the string) and ones that accept "Loop" end strings (where the string forms a loop at the end, with no brass ball). It is important to purchase the correct type of string for your E string fine tuner. Violin G, D, and A strings are only made in the ball-end style.

Want to compare E Strings? Check out our Violin E String Comparison Set, a collection of our best selling Es, representing all of the major types of Es on the market.

String Sizes

Violin sizes range from full-size (4/4) down to 1/32 size. Strings are sized accordingly and must match the size of the violin to prevent damage to the instrument. 1/8 Size strings may be used on 1/10 violins, as manufacturers do not generally make 1/10 size strings.

String Gauges

The gauge of a violin or viola string is a measure of its thickness. Heavy strings respond more slowly, produce greater volume, and put greater stress on the instrument. If the instrument is not up to the pressure, the tone may become 'pinched' or 'closed off', and the instrument may become damaged. Note that string gauges are not standardized and a medium gauge of one set may be thicker or thinner than that of another. Changing gauges or string types may also necessitate a sound-post adjustment to compensate for the change in pressure.

  • Heavy/Stark/Strong Gauge: Stronger tone, slower response, greater string tension
  • Medium/Mittel Gauge: The thickness recommended by the manufacturer for most instruments
  • Light/Weich/Weak Gauge: Softer tone, faster response, lower string tension

Tone Color & Other Considerations

In your search for just the right sound, players will frequently use words like warm, bright, dark, brilliant, edgy, dull, etc. Keep in mind that different people mean different things when they use these words; we don't have a good, common vocabulary, unfortunately. Everyone has different ears and different tastes, and our perception of sound is sufficiently complicated that precise definition is next to impossible. But, as a broad generalization, whether they know it or not, players use these words primarily to describe the frequency distribution of the tone produced, i.e. what frequencies are emphasized and what frequencies are subdued. Think of this as the difference you hear when using the treble and bass knobs on your stereo. When you turn up the bass, the sound gets warmer, darker, duller, muddier, boomier, etc. When you turn down the bass or turn up the treble, the sound gets brighter, more brilliant, edgy, articulate, clear, sharp, etc. Note that some of these words are positive and some negative, and you can't get one without the other. For example, a more brilliant string set, like Evah Pirazzi, will yield greater clarity and brilliance, but necessarily, at the same time, will accentuate squeaks and squawks. A darker set like Obligato will yield greater warmth and diminish squeaks and squawks, but will also have less clarity, duller articulation, and will sound muddy to some ears and on some instruments. String selection is a bit of a balancing act between these two extremes, and is a matter of finding the right strings for your instrument, your tastes, your ears, and your style of music.

Tone color is not the only factor in string selection. Ease of play, longevity, price, and other factors can be just as important. One other note: if you're having trouble finding the strings to give you the sound you're looking for, consider that the strings are only part of the whole. The adjustment of the instrument, choice of bow, rosin, even chin and shoulder rests also factor heavily into the resulting tone. If you can't find strings that sound good to you, you likely need to try adjusting other factors.

Need help selecting a set that works for you? Send us an email and let us know what you're looking for. Tell us about your instrument, strings you've tried, and what you like and dislike about each. We'll be happy to point you in the right direction!