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Sound Post Setup
The guidelines I use to set up my violin sound post
The purpose of violin Sound Post is:
One, to support the top violin sound box plate
Two, to transfer the vibrations to bottom plate
Sound post can have enormous effect on the sound quality and loudness of the
violin, thus it is often referred to as the Soul of the violin.
The position of the sound post inside the violin is important, its effect
varies with violin construction, but general trend is demonstrated in Fig1.
When installing a new Sound Post, the best starting point is in line with
the Treble E-string) foot of the bridge and about 5mm away towards the
Tailpiece of the violin.
Moving sound post towards the center can increase lower tones
B: Setting the Sound Post towards the side may increase higher frequencies resulting in brighter and stronger tone.
C: Setting the sound post back towards violin tailpiece tends to reduce loudness, can make sound more hollow.
D: Moving the sound post closer to to fingerboard can make more brilliant and louder sound.
lateral position change (from A to B) is possible with the same Sound Post.
In Fig 2 we marked a spot at the edge of the sound post after it has been
placed while strings were loose. It shows that when strings are tightened
the sound post does not move as far towards the side while set with the same
lateral force. This means that after the A and E strings are tightened the
dimensions of the sound box would be changed, thus giving further variable
to affect sound. It would make sense that using shorter or longer sound post
will not give same effect as moving the same sound post laterally.
use: KKS Sound Post Setter/Inserter/Remover and Sound post inspection light
with diffused beam.
- I use
the ink cartridge from a ball point pen to mark position of bottom of
sound post, also leave mark on the sound post.
strings tight I introduce the KKS Setter tool and grab the Sound Post.
the Tool handle to dislodge the Sound Post, Then move the Sound post
towards the middle of the sound box, the highest part inside.
Sure the Tool handle is absolutely perpendicular to the violin body, this
will keep the sound post perpendicular.
move the sound post towards new location, try slight up/don movement to
ensure the top and bottom of the sound post meet the belly and back
plates at the same time.
the handle to apply pressure on sound post, thus jam it in its new
position. I leave the Tool with the Sound Post at this time. Make sure the
sound post is set at desired location.
tighten the E string to ensure the sound post is held tight, then turn the
Tool handle to open and remove.
This is my latest adjustment to
my sound post. With Strings G and D tight the sound post was set
about 1.5mm back. The result was noticeable change in response. G was
deeper, D more metallic, C on A string slightly less prominent, volume
about the same. I like this change and will keep it for now.