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I'm a beginner violinist. I'm planning to buy a used electric violin, but I don't know much about them.

Is the maintenance for an electric violin the same as with the acoustic one? Any tips on how to choose one would be highly appreciated.

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The 'gotcha' I wish I'd considered when buying mine is weight. It is so much heavier than my acoustic which makes it is less fun to play (and to carry through airports!) –  dumbledad Sep 24 '13 at 8:24
    
never thought about that .. thanks for the advice :) –  Agent1891 Sep 25 '13 at 12:57

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

What you should look for is a well built instrument, with good sound and that looks and sounds good for you.

If you are inexperienced can be good to take someone with you that is more advanced in violin playing. Anyway you can think about this:

  • Some electric violins are very heavy, this will hurt your back. Wood violins weight about 0,5 Kg
  • Check if the overtones are tuned. If the empty strings are tuned then the overtones should also be, otherwise it might be strange proportions in the instrument which will give you problems with intonation.
  • Try the sound. You have to like the sound of the instrument. Ask also what kind of pickup it has and check the cable exit is comfortable with your way of holding the violin.
  • Some instruments have nice electronics, like volume knobs and eq, this can be good but not essential. More features more weight and higher price.
  • Some E.Violin needs a battery inside. In that case you need to change it as a part of the maintenance, and have a spare battery around. Big advantage to violins with batter is that often you can play them with headphones anywhere without needing more power.

The maintenance is very much the same, more simple actually. Cleaning rosin from your strings is one good habit to have.

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Minor edits after I removed the opinion based query from the question –  Dr Mayhem Sep 15 '13 at 16:09
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String care is certainly part of the maintenance that doesn't change. However, you may choose different types of strings than you would for an acoustic instrument. On the bright side :-), typically the bridge on an electric sits on a flat surface so it's much easier to replace should the need arise. –  Carl Witthoft Sep 15 '13 at 16:44

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