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Electric cello?


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(there isn't a string forum, so i thought i'd ask here)

 

I'm trying to help a bandmate pick out an electric cello. Does anyone here have any thoughts or advice?

 

It would be great to keep it under $2000, but on the other hand, she will be selling the excellent cello she's had for 15 years (but which would cost too much to repair), so she doesn't want to just replace it with a knockoff.

 

The only electric cellos under $2000 right now are the Yamaha SVC50 and the very suspicious $200 logs-with-strings on ebay.

 

Are there any cellists here with experience with the SVC50? Or can anyone suggest other options we ought to be looking at?

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I'm not a cellist, but I do know that Yamaha is pretty good for most of their instruments. Even when they aren't a personal choice, its rarely because they aren't good instruments.

 

+1

 

I've had a number of different Yamaha instruments and so far they've all lived up to their reputation for making decent quality stuff across a range of prices.

 

Another option that might be worth looking into is purpose made electric pickups for use with a standard cello. The ones that I've come across replace the bridge with one that has an inbuilt pickup, or pick ups. I don't know what the range of quality is like but a friend had one on an upright acoustic 'double bass' and was happy with it.

 

Depending on what you're after, having such a pickup can be an advantage, as you can still play either plugged or unplugged, and attach it to an existing instrument - a good second hand one for instance. Of course, if the aim is to get something more compact, then that might not appeal so much.

 

A quick Google threw up a fair range of different manufacturers of the pickups.

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Hi,

 

I read your post when looking for somebody who could give me information about the same thing. I play cello in a rock band and for the moment I've been getting by with a pickup (barcus berry) . It's not as expensive as an electric cello but has some inconveniences when playing outside because of some technical problems, as coupling (i'm not sure of this expression) and difficulties at the moment of listening to myself. So I thought the solution is to look for an electric one.

 

I've been suggested to buy a Yamaha Silent Cello (SVC210) but I haven't found where to try it.

 

The other option I've been studying is this one:

 

http://www.bridgeinstruments.co.uk/elec_cellos.html

 

I know that it is the choice of one of the components of sigur ros, and it makes me think that it's a good option as well, but i don't really know because of the same problem: nowhere to try it.

 

Maybe somebody could give us some advice?

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(there isn't a string forum, so i thought i'd ask here)

 

www.fiddleforum.com

 

is an "alternative" (as in electric strings forum)

 

I guess the first thing for the 'cellist to ask herself is

"Do I want an electric 'cello or an amplified acoustic 'cello?"

 

is similar to the idea of an electric guitar or an amplified acoustic guitar.

 

the yamahas feel quite a bit like an electric instrument..I mean in their response, the fingerboard radius and the like are pretty typical. That's not a bad thing, provided that's what you are looking for.

 

She may be able to rent one -- there used to be a company strings to go, that rented instruments like this for the traveler, don't know if they are still around. It might be "strings2go"

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As a person who has had been playing cello for close to 8 years, I find that any of the electric versions just don't capture richness of the instrument. IMO the best option is to go acoustic and then by a set of pizo pickups that attach to the bridge and/or a special microphone that attaches to the tail piece. Another thing is that I beleive most of the electrics just have a pizeo attached to the bridge, so basicly you can cover more gorund if you buy an acoustic with a bridge pickup. Another perk about buying a traditional cello is that they hold thier value extremely well. When I went to trade in 3/4 size one up to a full size five years ago we got about 90% of the money back on a trade in. If you buy an electric one I can pretty much guarentee that once its out of the case you've lost 1/5 of the value right there.

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