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I have both an acoustic and a "solid body electric" violin. I like both of them.
The drawback to the acoustic is that it only goes so quiet, and so I can't play on it late at night without risking waking someone up or maybe bothering neighbors.
The drawback to the electric is that for the best sound from it, it needs at least batteries (or a headphone amp which needs batteries) and ideally something like a guitar amp or PA amp. It *can* be played with no amplifier and without the headphones, but it is very quiet then and doesn't sound like anything I personally really like. Ok for just trying a quick run or something, but not a lot of fun.
Using an acoustic with a clamp-on pickup as Fiddlerman suggests can also be a good option to consider. If there are drawbacks to it, they would be that it won't sound exactly like a "solid body electric" OR an acoustic. But when you take the pickup off, it would definitely be an acoustic with all the portability and cool sound acoustic violins have. The other thing would be if you needed to play in really loud situations, like say a loud band where you need to compete with something like an electric guitar? You could run into feedback issues. Probably not a big concern unless you want to play in a rock band or something like that. So it is a good compromise, but definitely a compromise on some levels. I would call it a third choice that might or might not be a better choice, depending on what you actually want.
At least one of our members here, Grofica, has a violin that was designed to have both electric and some acoustic sound to it. I'd call that another option all on it's own, and she gets some great sounds out of it, it looks to be a seriously sweet little instrument.
For me personally, I don't feel there is a single best choice, and I like having both "solid body electric" and an acoustic. I like playing electric a bit better, but that is just what I like.
For you though, Ronnie, the big question would be what do you want to do and what do you want to sound like? The kind of music you want to play and the kind of sounds you want and whether or not you'd need amplification to be able to play the sort of gigs you eventually want to play are some of your deciding factors.
The thing is, each choice has a distinct range of sounds, some of which can be very good. If you have a local music store where you can try the different options out, it could be a very good idea to do so. See what you like.
I don't really think there is a "bad" choice, since a lot of good sounds are possible with any of the options. But I also wouldn't say there is a definite "best" choice since each option will have certain advantages and disadvantages, just like anything else in life.
Me, I like having both acoustic and electric. If I could only pick one, it would probably be the electric but that is strictly a matter of personal tastes. Having had both, I'd miss the acoustic a bit if I ever had to make a choice like that.
"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman
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