More About Jay Haide Models

violins, violas and cellos

The Jay Haide model 101 is our best-selling model. Economically priced for the serious student, but with the sound of a much more expensive instrument. The model 101 is available in violin (sizes 4/4 through 1/8), viola (sizes 14″ through 16″), cello (sizes 4/4 through 1/8) and double bass (3/4 and 1/2 sizes).

The model 101 is a great choice for the beginning or intermediate student looking for an instrument with a brilliant, highly responsive tone that will make learning new musical skills a pleasure.

Jay Haide à l’ancienne violins, violas and cellos are brought to you after years of development, with the collaboration of master European luthiers known for their fine varnish technique. The varnish is a new formulation, carefully applied and beautifully antiqued, giving each instrument the patina of age, so desired by both musicians and connoisseurs. And, they are as beautiful tonally as they are visually.

The Jay Haide à l’ancienne has been designed for the advanced student and professional who needs an instrument that will complement and enhance their artistic skills.

In recent years, there has been an increased interest in the performance of early music with original instruments. The Jay Haide à l’ancienne violins are now available in the Baroque style. These beautifully crafted violins are made to exacting Baroque specifications both for the professional who performs in baroque ensembles and for the advanced student with an interest in authentic early music performance. The à l’ancienne Baroque style violins have shorter necks set at a lower angle, smaller bass bar, low-tension gut strings, and other fittings suitable for perfoming in the baroque manner.

The Baroque model is currently only available in full-size violin.

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Our Rosins Are Special

The “Cat Brand”; Millant Deroux rosin is our flag-ship product. We are still manufacturing it to the same exacting standards that were established over 100 years ago.

We use only the best ingredients. This rosin is suitable for violin, viola and cello. We find the sound produced by this classic rosin to be clean and subtle – a fine choice for professional and serious student alike.

Our ultra-soft, ultra-strong Jade rosin for the double-bass.

This formula has properties of dust-free adhesion. It avoids metallic residues, which do not contribute to grip, and may possibly scratch fine varnishes.

Our natural rosin strikes a happy medium between the classic dark rosin and the new Colophane 2000. The natural grade rosin offers the smooth sound of the classic dark blended with the robust, sparkling sound of the Colophane 2000.

Some years ago, we realized that there was a strong demand for an alternative to the smooth, soft sound of the Millant dark. After a long period of research, we came up with our light rosin, “Gold and Silver”.

This rosin gives a stronger, more aggresive sound; without giving up any of the quality our customers have come to expect from the Millant brand company.

This beautiful new product is a felicitous blend of our fine Millant rosin, natural grade. The case is an artistic collaboration with an Italian box-maker, who has created these delightful violin-shaped boxes of exotic, aromatic woods.

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Jay Haide Stringed Instruments

Students and professional alike praise the new Jay Haide à l’ancienne violins, violas and cellos

The violin, considered the greatest and most noble of musical instruments, first appeared in the Cremona, Italy workshops of Andrea Amati around 1550. It was so perfect in form and voice that it has remained basically unchanged to this day. There have been “innovators” who have tried to improve the design, but their efforts lay mostly forgotten. Today, violin research is aimed at finding the working techniques of the great Italian masters of the 17th and 18th centuries, because the classical techniques of violin making have proven to be the best.

By the mid-17th century, the violin had become so popular that the individual makers couldn’t keep up with the demand. Enterprising makers in Northern Europe set up workshops to make less expensive instruments based on a division of labor with each worker having a specialty (carving scrolls, bending ribs, varnishing, etc.). By the 19th century, large workshops in Germany, France and Bohemia were manufacturing large quantities of string (and other) almost entirely for export, much of the production coming to the United States. The range of quality was vast, with quickly made instruments to be sold cheaply (as little as $2.00 around 1900) to excellently made works suitable for a professional musician.

An excellent example of these kinds of enterprises were the French workshops in Mirecourt (the French center of violin making). The largest and best known of these companies were Jerome Thibouville-Lamy and Laberte-Humbert. At their peak in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, they were large and busy firms, exporting all over the world. They even had showrooms in New York City. They employed the best makers they could find. For example, Thibouville-Lamy employed the well-known makers Alfred Acoulon, Emile Blondelet and Charles Buthod (who worked as a maker for J.B. Vuillaume. Their best production bears the label of these makers. Makers of their stature assured the high quality of the JTL instruments. Marc Laberte assembled a collection of Italian masterpieces (Stradivari, Guarneri del Gesu, Amati, Guadagnini, Ruggeri and more) for his master makers to study and copy. After WWII, these workshops became smaller as the workers left Mirecourt for better paying jobs in Paris and elsewhere. Today, the musical instruments by these mostly anonymous craftsmen have aged 60 to 100 years and have developed tonally to become excellent quality instruments.

Today, there are more and more students studying the violin and the demand for quality string instruments has again increased, in spite of funding cuts to school music programs. This demand can no longer be met by the workshops in Western Europe, where costs are so high. There are now workshops in Eastern Europe and especially the Pacific Rim, similar in quality to the $2.00 violins of 100 years ago. However, what may seem to be an attractive bargain, is in reality no bargain at all. They are usually difficult or impossible to play on and a great discouragement to any student.

Several years ago we became European distributors for the Jay Haide instruments which were developed in Berkeley, California to meet the need for good quality, affordable violins. These instruments were hand made, to exacting specifications. The “Jay Haide” stringed instruments are continually being improved, with new models being added, and constant evaluation of critical elements of design. The newest addition to our collection of “Jay Haide” instruments is the incomparable “Jay Haide à l’ancienne” violins, violas, cellos and basses, in several models, are available from Thorvaldsson E.U.R.L., in collaboration with Ifshin Violins.

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