THE POLAR™ PICKUP SYSTEM allows the player to select the direction of response to control attack, sustain, and bow response characteristics. The result is an exciting new dimension in string instrument performance, featuring:
- Powerful dynamics
- Rich, full sound
- High sensitivity to the bow
- Sustained pizzicato
- Extended versatility
As a player, you may not think about the direction your strings are vibrating, or even be aware that string vibrations on a musical instrument are polarized in relation to the fingerboard and the motion of the plectrum and bow. Yet direction is one of the most significant factors influencing the tone and response of a stringed instrument. In fact, instruments from the violin family are different from the lute or guitar in large part due to the effects of string polarization.
The bow drives the string back and forth in the direction of the bow, while at the same time it suppresses the up and down vibration. You can see this effect with the naked eye by watching the wide excursion of the lowest strings when bowed. From the front, you can see a wide lateral pattern of string vibration, but looking from the side you can see almost no pattern at all. Instruments in the violin family have a tall bridge in combination with an asymmetrical support structure of bass bar and sound post that efficiently translate the sideways motion of the bowed string into sound.
The Polar pickup responds with a high degree of lateral sensitivity and vertical rejection that is tailored to mirror the polarity of the bowed string. The result is a remarkably dynamic, rich tone that responds effortlessly to the bow.
The Polar pickup takes this concept one step further, and is able to switch from lateral to vertical sensitivity, which is ideal for pizzicato. Unlike the violin, a flattop guitar or lute respond in the vertical direction, to minimize the plucked attack and store energy for longer sustain. With the touch of a finger, the polar pickup can switch from lateral to vertical mode. In the vertical mode the attack is controlled for a sustained, singing pizzicato response. The lateral mode has the opposite effect, and the plucked response is extraordinarily percussive, like a traditional bowed instrument, only more so. This dual capacity allows the player to control attack and decay, adding new expressive potential to the violin family of instruments.
CR and NXT Series violins, violas, cellos, and basses are equipped with the dual-mode Polar Pickup System. On CR Series instruments, bass and treble EQ controls combine with the Polar pickup options to provide tremendous tonal range. Pickup switching and associated pre-amp circuitry vary from model to model.
Getting comfortable with your violin is important for successful practice and performance. The instrument is cradled intimately against the body, yet all players are shaped differently. The Custom Shoulder Rest for the NS Violin can be formed by the player to fit his or her body perfectly. Firm foam is backed by a layer of malleable aluminum that can be bent with thumb and forefingers to mold the rest into virtually any position. Once the shoulder rest is formed, the shape remains fixed, providing a secure structural platform.
IF YOU COULD TAKE ALL THE ENERGY YOU USE TO HOLD YOUR VIOLIN and apply it to your playing, would you play differently? Optimal chin rest position is crucial for player comfort. Full adjustment allows each player to customize the chin rest to fit vastly different body shapes and playing styles. Using your hand to overcome the friction of the clamp allows you to experiment to find a desirable chin rest angle. The chin rest can tilt forward and back, as well as left and right.
The clamping screws in the center of each hub can be adjusted to provide the desired amount of friction to insure that the chin rest does not move in use.
Using the 5/32″ hex wrench (provided) to adjust the level of friction, the chin rest position can also be moved closer or further from the instrument. It can also be rotated more to the center or more to the side.
What if your violin weighed nothing? Pretend for a minute that you don’t have to grip your violin between your chin and shoulder. Imagine that the violin stays effortlessly in place, your head and hands free to move. Even the most aggressive bowing doesn’t move the instrument. It seems to float lightly but securely next to your body in the perfect playing position.
The Balanced Shoulder Rest liberates violinists from the limitations of holding the violin. It uses the physics of a simple lever to counterbalance the weight of the instrument. A flexible, weighted aluminum arm wraps gently around the upper torso, lightly but securely spreading the load over the shoulder, chest, and upper back. Adjustable connecting screws allow the musician to maneuver the instrument into optimum playing position and fine-tune it for comfort. The violin stays securely in place without help from the hands or chin, but it remains mobile and responsive to the player’s movements.
The Balanced Shoulder Rest converts your holding energy to playing energy, freeing you to play better. It fits all models of the NS Violin.