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Electric violin not "silent" so much as "as loud as acoustic"
Cecilio 4/4 CEVN-2NA
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Dorque
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April 20, 2015 - 1:22 pm
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 I knew I wanted an electric violin (Cecilio 4/4 CEVN-2NA) because Future.  That it was advertised as "silent" was a bonus - I could play in mah bedroom while my wife worked in the office.  But I don't see how an acoustic could be any louder.  And yes I have the power off.

I feel I must be doing something electric-specific wrong here.

Rosin bow, clip on tuner, set tuner to violin+mic, pluck strings to tune, tune while holding stupid London Bridge straight up because tightening the pegs makes it fall backwards, play super-perfect loud piercing E.  I can't press down any lighter.

 

Is an unplugged electric violin supposed to be this loud?

 

PS:This site apparently rules.  Hope it does - I may need it for the next four years.

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DanielB
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April 20, 2015 - 2:09 pm
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Electric violins are never actually "silent".  I think it is kind of bad marketing practice to call them that.  They are quieter than acoustic violins, though. 

My electric (with no amp) is probably about as loud as a person speaking in an average to quiet voice.  If the house is quiet, anyone in the same room can hear it easily, while someone in the next room could probably tell I am playing but not hear it well.

I pick up the acoustic violin, on the other hand.. Anyone anywhere in the house will likely hear it.  LOL

So electric violins aren't actually "silent" but they aren't likely to bother someone who is watching TV in the next room either.

Unless you plug them in to a good amp with some big speakers, of course.. Then they can bother everyone between wherever you are and the police station. LOL!

"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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coolpinkone
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April 20, 2015 - 2:21 pm
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That was also news to me... that there was a certain amount of sound coming from the electric violin.   Luckily for me it is a non issue as I have rooms and I play alone most of the time in the house. 

I still think my acoustic with the mute on is louder.   But I use the head phones to block out the "silent" sounds that the violin makes... I think the sounds that come off the electric violin alone are kind of obnoxious. 

Anyway.. I have become obnoxious lately as I amp up the sound and play with hauntingly loud reverb and delay and other very obnoxious sounds..  ha ha..

 

vampire29 WHEN is Halloween...?? brwaaaah hahahahahhahhahah

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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Fiddlerman
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April 22, 2015 - 9:30 am
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Could you please take a picture of your violin. I'm wondering if you got an acoustic electric violin. Is the body solid?

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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cdennyb
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April 22, 2015 - 1:29 pm
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My silent electric is so quiet, you can't even hear it in the next room with the door closed just 20 feet away! sleep

But I seldom hear it that way as I have the amp cranked up, the effects box blasting and the doors all open even to the outside.banana

(I live on several acres out in the country and when I do that even my neighbor that's about a 1/4 mi away says she can sometimes hear me play when it's still and calm outside!)violin-1260

 

I bet you have an "acoustic/electric" like Pierre thinks. My A/E is just as loud as any of my acoustic only violins... but of course not as loud as the amp turned up.drummer

"If you practice with your hands you must practice all day. Practice with your mind and you can accomplish the same amount in minutes." Nathan Milstein

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DanielB
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April 22, 2015 - 4:40 pm
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Well, the original post does state a Cecilio 4/4 CEVN-2NA, which would definitely be a solid body type. 

"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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RedViolin
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April 22, 2015 - 6:50 pm
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I'm not sure if this will help, but I find that the sound emitted from my electric is much different depending on whether I am listening to it through headphones or not, as this affects, somewhat unconsciously, how I play. When I play sans headphone, I tend to bow more strongly than needed with headphones, to avoid uneven/whispery sound, and to actually hear what I am playing. When I have headphones on, however, the sound emitted from the violin itself is much quieter, and while it sounds a bit like a scratchy whisper to the naked ear, the sound that comes through the headphones is much fuller and nicer. Hearing that fuller, nicer sound, I don't feel the need to apply as much pressure, which means that the sound others hear is much quieter. (Sorry, I am very new to music and terrible at describing sound!)

When I first started playing, I was convinced that my EV was nowhere near quiet enough (because obviously it sounded different depending on whether I was wearing headphones or not, because this changed how I played without me noticing), but I asked my husband to play a few notes while I was in another room, and heard almost nothing. As we live in an apartment, this is really important to me not upsetting the neighbours, especially as a novice. It wouldn't matter quite so much were I a virtuoso!violin-1260

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DanielB
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April 22, 2015 - 7:51 pm
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Another thing to keep in mind is that because the violin (electric or acoustic) is touching your jaw, you are hearing it not only in the regular fashion, but also by bone conduction.  That can make any violin seem a bit louder when you're playing it.

 

A little point of trivia also about violin sounds.  With an acoustic violin, the "scratch and hiss" of the bow on the strings actually fades quickly as you move away from it.  So on an acoustic violin, you may hear what you think is a lot of hiss and bowing noise, because you are so close to the contact point.  A listener maybe 10 ft or more away will hear you as sounding smoother than you sound to yourself.

With electric, though, you don't have that advantage.  That pickup at the bottom of the bridge will pick up every bit of that noise and make sure it gets amplified.  So if you practice a lot on electric, you will unconsciously work on making your bowing very clean to avoid those unpleasant little noises.

That's the upside.  A downside is that when you go to play acoustic, you'll find you have to give the bow a bit more weight and "dig in" a little more to get a good strong sound than you do when playing electric. 

Those are just a couple of the ways that acoustic and electric violins are different instruments, in a sense. 

"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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RedViolin
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April 24, 2015 - 3:12 am
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Thanks for all of those points @DanielB those are really interesting things to know!

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coolpinkone
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April 25, 2015 - 1:58 pm
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@DanielB 

I am finding that I always need to do my acoustic practice first.  Well that is always the plan at least.  🙂

And there are many days I don't play the electric at all.  (well... not many).. I have broken my only play Electric on Fridays rule.  LOL

Anyway, I am not one to notice a lot of the particulars about playing.  But I can say that I see what you are talking about with the EV vs. Acoustic.

Redviolin, that makes sense about playing lighter when you have the head phones on.   I don't usually need to have the head phones on as I am not usually disturbing anyone but the dog.  🙂

Having an EV sure is fun.    Last night I put my efforts into my acoustic because I have this fear of getting spoiled by the sweet sounds of the EV. 🙂

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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DanielB
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April 28, 2015 - 8:12 pm
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@coolpinkone: I find I definitely prefer some songs on electric and some on acoustic so far as a matter of the sound of the instruments and the "feel" it gives.  That helps to make sure I don't neglect either too badly.

"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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coolpinkone
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April 29, 2015 - 12:50 pm
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@DanielB 

I agree with you... I have a few songs I like on the Electric a lot. 

I am finding that most songs sound cool on the Electric.  I sure love playing it.

I have been playing acoustic a lot. ( I finish up a 35 day challenge this week. 🙂

I have been critical of my playing in the last week. I have been trying to make recordings for the Ashokan party and other things.

So.. 

Sometimes it is nice to take a break from all the "seriousness" and have some fun on the electric. 

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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DanielB
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April 30, 2015 - 5:21 am
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@coolpinkone: It may not be useful or pertinent, but since your words reminded me of something my guitar teacher once told me, I'll say it here..

I was talking about serious practice vs just playing for fun, and he stopped me and told me to try instead for what he called "serious fun".

That means that when you're playing a scale or exercise or other "serious" type playing, you find some fun to have in it.  Make a game of seeing how well you can do it or something so it is at least as entertaining as playing a hand of solitaire or a crossword puzzle.  Because we should always enjoy playing and so it can always be it's own sort of fun.

And when you're doing easy (maybe even goofy) bits, at least once in a while, try to remind yourself to do them as perfectly as you would if you were in a competition with the best players in the world for a million bucks and that song was what the judges handed out for the last round.  All the contestants in that imaginary contest have to play the same exact "Mary Had a Little" or whatever, the same notes, and whoever does them the best will walk with that prize.

His thing was that early on in music we tend to separate seriousness and fun, but he felt the really great players were always doing both, and maybe it was part of what makes them great.

Just an offbeat notion I thought I'd toss in. 

"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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Fiddlerman
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April 30, 2015 - 6:03 am
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Great idea. I like it!!!

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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coolpinkone
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April 30, 2015 - 11:40 am
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@DanielB HECK yeah.... I can use this advise.

I am all about serious fun.  And playing the most simple things like it is for an audience.  I think this is a great tip.

Thank you.

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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stet
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August 11, 2015 - 6:28 pm
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Hello.

I have the Cecilio Solidwood Ebony Electric Violin CEVN-1 and i am really glad about it.

It does not have a loud sound if you do not use an amplifier and I can practice as much i want without bothering my wife. The sound is nice even without the amplifier and it gets nicer when you learn to play better.

I also have and an acoustic violin. I teach myself music theory and violin and I am not an experienced violinist, but i believe that there is no way this silent violin to be louder than an acoustic, except if the acoustic violin has a "dead" sound, which means that it does not have any strength at all. In my opinion, if someone has an acoustic violin which is more silent than this electric, he may need to take the acoustic violin to a luthier or he may need to buy a better acoustic violin, because an acoustic violin which is more silent than this silent electric violin is not a good violin.

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FirstPancake
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August 11, 2015 - 6:37 pm
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DanielB said
Another thing to keep in mind is that because the violin (electric or acoustic) is touching your jaw, you are hearing it not only in the regular fashion, but also by bone conduction.  That can make any violin seem a bit louder when you're playing it.

This one still gets to me sometimes 🙂

My electric can sound quite loud to my under ear, and for a while I was convinced the e-string was as loud as an acoustic with a practice mute on (which can still be quite a cutting sound). It wasn't until I got my hands on an acoustic violin and was able to listen to them being played side by side (by someone else) that I realized that though the sound under ear was similar, the silent violin had far far less projection even compared to the acoustic with the practice mute on. 

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