I just found an mp3 app to use that I think sounds pretty true to what I hear, so decided to record a quick comparison of sound on these 3 bows before I send the 2 back today.
Try to ignore my playing - if I decide to keep using this app, I'll either have to learn to ignore the extremely distracting ads, or give in to the cost of the ad blocker. 😕
🤔... A, B, C - how you think these 3 bows compare in sound?
I played all 5 strings.
I can't tell from the recordings, but if you are combining a search for balance with an additional search for tone, then you are probably creating your own indecision by the complication. There's also the distinction between the tone you are getting now and the tone potential, which you probably can't judge except by the price-tag. I think you should leave tone out of it (how you rosined the bows might affect it) and just go by balance and flexibility and playability, and then develop your tone.
...I probably should say what I hear in these 3, because I thought the differences were important.
A - it's kinda thin, not a lot of overtones (FM CF Weave VIOLIN bow)
B - focused, rich with overtones (Arcus P6 Octagonal VIOLA bow)
C - not as focused, a little richer/fuller sounding (Arcus P6 Round stick VIOLA bow)
B & C were close with great sound, which was good - but not in handling. They were close in balance, too.
What I was looking for was a richer sounding P4 Octagonal & I found sound (P6 was a huge difference), but I'm hoping it isn't always necessary to trade the balance I want for it.
I've been known to chase rainbows... think I might be asking for too much & can't really justify trying anything more expensive, because I'm not a professional.
If the balance had felt more toward the frog like the P4 Octagonal I tried earlier, I would have kept this Arcus P6 Octagonal Viola bow.
...one more trial.
If new/good quality hair is even & engages the string easier, with less rosin than poorer quality or worn out hair - it makes sense to me that it helps the bow sound better.
I believe Arcus supplies the measurement (under the frog) of how much hair is to be used for rehairs.
Btw, the brown FM CF Weave bow I've been comparing to any others is my newest one - and I always check over/remove nubby 'mutant' hairs (if any) from all bows I buy.
...don't think the hair was a factor in my quick recorded sound test.
I'd even be hard pressed to say there was more hair on the Viola bows vs Violin - not much & I don't use full hair contact most of the time, anyway.
My Fairy Godmother visited!!!
Right off; both of the Arcus P5 Octagonal bows feel lighter than the P6's (which felt too close to my FM Weave), one feels a little lighter at the tip end, but the other one plays & sounds a little better to me.
I still need to play both of them for at least a week before making any decision.
I'm LMAO because it's kinda hard to do a blind study between the 2 bows when the screws are VERY different!?! 🤔 One is solid silver, so not so pretty. (lol)
Btw, I wanted to try the Fiddlerman PRO Viola bow, but it's heavier than I want - it's still lighter than some of the other Viola bows.
AND, in case you haven't noticed, the Fiddlerman PRO bows look exactly like Arcus bows.
The Fiddlerman PRO Violin bow was too light for me to consider for my Viola, but if I was in the market for a Violin bow - it would be THE bow I would have to try! 🤗
...still may happen, not done with Mortimer - very interested in the pedal that changes EV to Cello, that Andy Reiner demonstrated in a 5-string Fiddle Hell workshop!
No more foolin' around!
Hate having to make a decision, but my 1st impressions haven't changed on these two bows - one just doesn't have the full tone, power and agility.
One P5 bow was closer to a P4 and the other was closer in sound to the P6, but pleasantly lighter in feel.
My FM Weave bow and the 2 Arcus each have a slightly different balance point - the bow I chose is approximately a half inch closer to the frog than my FM Weave.
I feel like I could dance on the strings forever!
Just like Goldilocks... found one JUST RIGHT!
AND, I don't have to pay as much as I thought I would have to! 🤗
I'm now the proud owner of a VIOLA bow that is
lighter and more powerful than my VIOLIN bow!
Thank you, Fiddlershop!