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Questions tagged [string-instruments]

A musical instrument that produces sound by means of vibrating strings. Use this for questions about the category, rather than for a specific instrument.

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15 votes
1 answer
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Why do guitars have different position markers than almost all other fretted instruments?

If you look at banjos, mandolins, ukuleles, and balalaikas, almost all of them have a position marker at the 10th fret whereas almost all guitars mark the 9th fret instead. What accounts for the ...
trw's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
21 views

Playing notes for a short-necked saz with a long-necked saz

Since I'm totally new to playing the saz I have a question regarding long-necked and short-necked saz: Can I use a book designed to teach how to play the short-necked saz with a long-necked saz or is ...
pahohu's user avatar
  • 131
3 votes
1 answer
254 views

An instrument I don’t recognize (photo included) [closed]

I’m not sure if this is a proper question to ask here so sorry in advance. The other day I was in Barcelona and saw a guy playing a plucked string instrument that had the size of a viola. Its body ...
Citronsea's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
115 views

Is there a historical connection between the charango and the jarana jarocha?

Context: Charango, Jarana jarocha The Andean charango and the jarana jarocha (jarocho means "from Veracruz, Mexico") both usually have five courses of strings. The middle course has two ...
zabolekar's user avatar
  • 183
1 vote
1 answer
149 views

Best way to memorize patterns/chunks/building blocks

I am having a hard time memorizing. I read some answers here and it seems the more you can lump together notes in memory the easier it gets. So I was hoping to build my 'internal library of motifs/...
Emil's user avatar
  • 759
2 votes
2 answers
771 views

I know these are sixteenth sextuplets, but I was wondering what these are called when they share the same staff? And how they're played?

I am trying to figure out what they are, I've searched on YouTube but I don't think I have the correct keywords to find out what I'm looking for... Are they played like double stops or played ...
jesuispierre's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
155 views

Is there an ideal size for viola?

I know that there isn't a standard "full size" for viola, but most people stop at 16 inches. However, I've also been told that for violas, the bigger the better. Is this true? If so, would ...
Ethan Ong Le An's user avatar
3 votes
0 answers
75 views

Why is the cavaquinho minhoto so different from other cavaquinhos?

For context: cavaquinho The Brazilian cavaquinho, the cavaquinho de Lisboa, the Cabo Verde cavaquinho, the Madeiran braguinha and its descendant, the ukulele, all seem to have a fretboard that is ...
zabolekar's user avatar
  • 183
4 votes
2 answers
395 views

What is the earliest we know wire-strung instruments to have existed?

What is the earliest we know wire-strung instruments to have existed? I was reading about gut strings, nylon strings, wire strings used on guitar, and wanted to know, but couldn't find the answer ...
Noah J's user avatar
  • 267
1 vote
1 answer
47 views

Can a reed be mounted to directly vibrate strings? [closed]

Can a reed be mounted in such a way as to directly vibrate a string? Granted that for the sake of playability, the string instrument would have a length similar to a 1/8 violin. Also, how much would ...
D-Squared's user avatar
17 votes
3 answers
5k views

What's this w-shaped ebony item from my grandma's violin case?

What's this w-shaped ebony item from my grandma's violin case? Possible it's not violin-related.
it's a hire car baby's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
29 views

What is the strum pattern in this song? [closed]

What is the strumming pattern in We Are Sick(Acoustic) by From Indian lakes
Sam's user avatar
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13 votes
2 answers
3k views

What is at the tip of large string concert instruments, and does it damage the floor?

I sat very close to the stage Friday night for the Pops. I could see a cellist in the front row and noticed the bottom tip of a metal rod where the cello stands, making contact with the wooden floor. ...
Jason P Sallinger's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
49 views

Finish cracks between sides and back?

I recently bought a seven year old used mandolin online. It has edge binding where the sides meet the top but not the back. Where the sides meet the back, the finish has little cracks along that seam, ...
spaaarky21's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
133 views

Using friction pegs with standard classical guitar headstock

Would it be reasonable to use guitar friction pegs with a regular classical headstock? I've never seen that, all friction peg versions of flamenco guitars have a different headstock design.
maciej's user avatar
  • 31
10 votes
1 answer
1k views

Mysterious plastic tube arriving with double bass strings

New double bass strings may include a short and thin (about 1 centimeter long) section of a plastic tube. It's the D string which goes through the tube. What is it, the tube? What is one supposed ...
Jirka Hanika's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
499 views

Learning cello fingerings without owning one

Okay this is going to be a weird question but bear with me, I promise I'm not crazy. Let's say I really wanted to learn cello. Now due to the fact I am not currently able to rent/buy a cello, this ...
violetorigin's user avatar
14 votes
1 answer
2k views

How do you specify no vibrato in notation?

I am composing a piece for string quartet, and I explicitly don't want vibrato. Is there a term for it, or should I just write "no vibrato"?
Neins's user avatar
  • 762
5 votes
1 answer
985 views

Sextuplet vs pair of triplets

A single sextuplet and a pair of triplets are similar in the fact that their rhythmic note values are equal, but are different (as affirmed in this post) in that usually a sextuplet should only have ...
Elements In Space's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
134 views

Identifying the string instrument used [closed]

I’m going to start learning to play a string instrument but I couldn’t choose between a violin or a viola. Recently I’ve been listening to an anime instrumental music and I have fell in love with it ...
Electric's user avatar
  • 113
2 votes
0 answers
413 views

Would mixing 80/20 Bronze with Phosphor Bronze guitar strings be a good way to alter the tonal balance of a particular acoustic guitar?

It’s generally agreed that different woods used in the body of an acoustic guitar will accentuate different tones and emphasize different parts of the tonal spectrum. Some woods will emphasize the ...
Rockin Cowboy's user avatar
10 votes
3 answers
3k views

I broke my G string and my other 3 strings are out of tune too

It’s Thanksgiving break right now and I have a Christmas concert next Saturday December 4th, so I brought it over to my Abuela’s house to practice. However, my grandparents keep the house hot, so my ...
Alanna's user avatar
  • 103
1 vote
1 answer
1k views

Help understanding frequency ratios and string length

This music book I'm reading taught me about frequency ratios as the basis for scales, but it doesn't explain it well enough for me, so I'm trying to learn more about it on my own. I want to know how ...
コナーゲティ's user avatar
12 votes
3 answers
2k views

How does Sitar produce sound while it doesn't have any sound holes?

I always thought that stringed instruments have hole(s) called soundholes so that the produced sounds can be heard. But the sitar as a stringed instrument doesn't have any soundholes. So how is the ...
Snack Exchange's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
178 views

When did Stradivarius become "Stradivarius!"

Instruments built by the Stradivarius family are popularly thought of amongst the pantheon of "greatest ever".1 But have they always been considered this way? Were they held in similarly ...
Aaron's user avatar
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4 votes
3 answers
1k views

Is it Ok to leave a guitar with a broken string?

Just broke the high E on my guitar and won't be able to get new strings for about 2 weeks. will leaving it as it is damage the guitar at all? the guitar is an Ibanez rga42fm with a fixed bridge All ...
Random Guy's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
288 views

Understanding terminology relating to the formula for the relationship between length of a string and its pitch

I am teaching mathematics, and I don't have any background in music. There is a cool example in the textbook that is related to the violin. There are a couple of technical words in that problem that I ...
Matha Mota's user avatar
3 votes
2 answers
551 views

Best way to practice difficult runs

Runs are very common in music; a typical run is a sequence of quick, short, slurred (not always) notes that either ascend or descend and often involve multiple shifts. The approaches I've learned a ...
Alex K's user avatar
  • 315
8 votes
1 answer
154 views

How to approach the collé bowstroke?

This section is from the bottom of the second page of the First Movement of the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto. A specific bowstroke called collé is to be utilized in this section. I am not a ...
Alex K's user avatar
  • 315
5 votes
3 answers
1k views

Four-note arpeggio on string instrument

Consider following excerpt of the first movement of Mendelssohn's Violin concerto: It contains a series of arpeggios. What are the rules to write such arpeggios? Are the four notes always played on ...
Karlo's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
344 views

Why do classical guitars necks meet the body at fret 12th and steel strings at fret 14th?

Is there a reason for this? What exactly is the reasoning behind it?
Neil Meyer's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
855 views

What gives a Chinese Pipa its unique timbre in comparison with a guitar?

Similar to this broader question How do East Asian instruments (Shamisen, pipa, etc.) get their unique sound? Though they a similar in many ways a guitar and a pipa sound very different. Could you ...
Bruce Adams's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
1k views

What is "Young's modulus", and how does it relate to guitar?

I've come across some posts that mention "Young's modulus" in relation to guitar. Young's modulus is discussed on physics.SE (Young's Modulus and Vibrating String Harmonics), but I'm looking ...
Aaron's user avatar
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14 votes
3 answers
1k views

Bridge intonation patterns on stringed instruments

On stringed instruments, the scale length needs to be slightly adjusted (at the bridge) for each string so that the first octave happens at the 12th fret/position, the 2nd at the 24th, etc. My ...
Alexbib's user avatar
  • 623
6 votes
1 answer
441 views

I want to make my Rabab sound louder

I have an Afghani stringed instrument. It has 3 main strings (nylon) along with drone and sympathetic strings. 20 in total. I feel that my rabab is not creating enough sound, especially the echo a ...
Qaisar Shah's user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
3k views

Violin tuning, equal temperament or just intonation?

I'm tuning my violin now, by making the fifths on open strings sounds most harmonious. So they are just fifths, a little wider than the equal fifth. But then would the gap between the G and E string ...
Jiu's user avatar
  • 353
4 votes
1 answer
114 views

I have a Skywin oud, 11 strings. Do the pegs need to be in a certain order, like in length?

So I'm not sure if my oud came strung correctly,they look a bit worn but it came with 6 pairs of replacement strings and one 11th string. What if while restringing, I took all the pegs out without ...
Jjfad20's user avatar
  • 41
1 vote
4 answers
682 views

Western musical instruments that can be played with one hand

https://www.google.com/search?q=western+musical+instruments Will it be very few western musical instruments that can be played by human beings with one hand only? Example : Mouth organ.
Prashant Akerkar's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
736 views

What is the name of this bowing technique for strings?

https://www.vsl.co.at/en/Playing_Techniques-Right_Hand/Violin-Ricochet It is basically playing all 4 strings consecutively creating an "undulation". HOWEVER, not in the staccato slurred ...
user71207's user avatar
  • 545
12 votes
3 answers
2k views

Notation for a unison double stop

What's the standard notation for the occurrence of the same pitch played on two different strings of the same instrument simultaneously, to be used within the same staff? The typical context would be ...
Jirka Hanika's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
57 views

Trying to lower string gauge - how to measure what I have now?

I've been playing shows at a local theatre for the past several years and when our April show was cancelled, they paid everyone anyway. So I'm planning to invest it in my kit. For the past few shows, ...
luser droog's user avatar
  • 15.1k
1 vote
1 answer
66 views

Do planetary geared tuners obviate the need for tailpiece tuners?

I've read somewhere the claim that geared tuners (e.g Pegheds, Wittners) obviate the need for fine-tuners. Does this refer to the fine tuners that clamp onto the string, or does it also mean I can ...
abelian's user avatar
  • 699
2 votes
4 answers
113 views

String instrument fingerboard tapes: position for just intonation vs equal temperament?

For those string players who are OK with/advocate using fingerboard tapes, where would you put them given that ET and JI demands slightly different positions? Would you put them at ET first, since ...
abelian's user avatar
  • 699
1 vote
2 answers
363 views

Fretting out on fretboard?

Whenever I change the strings on my electric guitar, in no more than 2 weeks, this happens: From about the 11th/12th fret onwards, the E and B (and sometimes G) strings sound noticeably lower, in ...
Dhruv Erry's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
162 views

I need help to identify the instruments of a composition (in a movie)

Probably this is very easy to answer for people who know the composition of an orchestra and which sound comes from which instrument. My question is, what is the instrument (or the composition of ...
Bevor's user avatar
  • 113
2 votes
1 answer
227 views

Which string instruments/playing techniques were used for Nashville Sound country music?

I've been delving into the history of a particular style of country music called "Nashville Sound" recently, which involved a lot of string sections in songs. Some websites describe them as being "...
Jodast's user avatar
  • 229
18 votes
7 answers
8k views

Why is a violin so loud compared to a guitar?

The violin is comparatively louder than a guitar. This is a surprising fact, given that: the violin instrument is generally smaller than, say, a typical classical or folk guitar, both use strings. ...
Michael Baudin's user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
420 views

Bow markings in advanced solo string music

I understand that bow markings are important in orchestral music, one reason being to keep players in sync visually. Back when I played viola, my (very basic — grade 4 or 5) music was littered ...
Jeremy Lindsay's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
166 views

Technical name of the slope on electric guitar body

Most common electric guitars have a slope on the edge of the largest part of their body, where the forearm lays. Has this slope a specific name?
yodabar's user avatar
  • 113
3 votes
2 answers
769 views

Two Stringed Instruments in Unison?

I have been receiving conflicting information from orchestration bigwigs. Some say that composers should never orchestrate two stringed instruments together because they will be ever so slightly out ...
Shoon's user avatar
  • 31