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For amps, you really want to play with them in person before making a decision. One players' mud is another player's mojo, y'know?
I use an old Ampeg through a Sunn speaker cab.
That probably isn't what most people would want though. Not the most portable rig for quick sessions. LOL
I make no particular effort to get my electric to sound like an acoustic. I have an acoustic violin for when I want to play acoustic. So far as I have ever yet heard, Nothing does the job of sounding like an acoustic violin as well as an actual acoustic violin. LOL All I expect out of the electric is a good usable musical sound on an instrument that can be played using violin/fiddle techniques. I get sounds I like from it, and that's what matters to me.
But with amps and etc, you really have to try them to know what you'll get. So much is the instrument and any effects chain you decide to use. But most of all, the difference is the player. Even if you get exactly the same gear as another player has, it won't really sound the same because you probably don't play just like that other person.
"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
I got a recommendation from a professional Rock Electric violinist, who plays the Realist RV5 primarily, to get the Fishman SA220, and that I would never regret it. Other than the price tag, so far he's right.
I tried a couple inexpensive guitar amps but they made the violin sound horrible. Even with several layers of parametric equalization, etc, I could never get them to sound as good as the violin all by itself (I also play the RV5 acoustic-electric).
The SA220, being more like a PA system than a guitar amp, has a much more pure sound. If you want to add effects, get a multi-effects pedal. I sometimes use a zoom G3X and have had some fun with it. I found a simple combination of a little bit of chorus, stadium reverb, and "air" from the G3X, through the SA220 sounds even better than the instrument alone.
FWIW, I did a wedding ceremony, outdoors, next to a running river, with over 250 people and didn't need to turn the master volume more than a quarter of it's range for everyone to hear both recorded music and voice. Another nice feature is that it has two channels with both 1/4 inch and XLR (with phantom power) inputs as well as a stereo AUX input for your phone or ipod.
If I didn't live so far away from everything, I might have tried out the fishman loudbox series as I have heard a lot of good things about those amps as well. I know another pro electric violinist who swears by her combination of the LR Baggs Para-Acoustic and AER Compact 60 (she also plays the RV5). As it stands, I hope never to buy another AMP.
JoeP: Beautiful playing! nicely done. g
I play my electric violin through a Fishman Platinum equalizer, several optional effects (like you mostly for chorus or reverb), and then straight into the mixer for the front of house and monitor PA systems (again, a clean PA) . So no separate amp. g
"Make every note beautiful", Ivan Galamian
“To play a wrong note is INSIGNIFICANT; To play without PASSION is INEXCUSABLE!” , Ludvig Van Beethovan
"It ain't rocket surgery"
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