7 Cool Things You Can Do With Electric Violins

5 min read

Things You Can Do With Electric Violin

Electric violins are some of the coolest and most underrated instruments out there. Mainly because for decades, orchestral musicians were under the old notion that electric violins should sound like traditional wooden violins.

Now we're not bashing traditional wooden violins. As classically trained musicians ourselves, we love the rich timbre of traditional wooden violins! It's a timeless sound that is still very much used in many genres of music today.

However, that doesn't mean an electric violin isn't good simply because it doesn't sound like a traditional wooden violin. It's a different instrument with its own unique sonics and features.

After all, we don't often hear guitarists commenting how their electric guitars don't sound as nice as their acoustic guitars!

In this article, we'll be putting aside old notions and focusing on some ofthe coolest things you can do with an electric violin.

As always, if you have any questions about these instruments, feel free to reach out to us at info@greatviolincases.com. We're more than happy to help!

Coolest Things You Can Do With An Electric Violin

1. Practice In Silence

silent practice electric violin

A great feature for violinists that want to hone in on their mad violin skills without bothering their housemates and neighbors. Practicing often consists of playing a single passage over and over till you get it right. And to listeners, this can feel quite...challenging. Especially with difficult passages that you may need to play hundreds of times.

Having the ability to practice in your room with your headphones on is great for your violin proficiency, and the sanity of the people around you.

2. Clean & Direct Sound To Your Computer

record electric violin sound

Have you ever recorded yourself on the violin, then played it back to hear all kinds of breathing noises, scratches, intonation issues, and your fridge humming? Then ask yourself,why can't this recording just sound like the way I hear it?

With a good electric violin, you won't need to worry about all that! You can plug a ¼" cable directly from your violin to your computer through an audio device. The instrument will not pick up outside noises. You can even talk while you record. The sound you hear will be the clean and full sound of the electric violin. Which is exactly what you need when experimenting with the effets you have on your DAW (digital audio workstation), such as Garageband, Logic Pro, Ableton, etc.

Keep in mind though, not all electric violins are created equal. Many electric violins under $500 will have internal white noise and feedback issues, which is a pain to fix. To learn more about avoiding these violins, check out ourcomplete guide to buying an electric violin.

3. Use Your Own Digital Preamp

A preamp is an electronic device that converts a weak signal into a loud signal that can be heard and processed. But a preamp can also change the color and texture of the sound it amplifies.Basically, it can make your electric violin sound different.

Every electric violin has a built-in preamp that captures the weak signal vibrations of the bridge when the bow touches the strings. But different preamps can deliver the signals in very different ways. So the sound you hear largely depends on the circuitry of the built-in preamps.

As mentioned before, if you have a clean and direct sound from a good electric violin, you can plug it into any software preamp; opening a world of possibilities in terms of tones and sonics. It's like having hundreds of electric violins.

 preamp electric violins

Software preamps these days are also getting incredibly advanced. Such as the Arturia preamp collection. Designed to emulate some of the most prestigious preamps ever used. You can add some subtle grit, distortion, sonics, etc., to the sound of your electric violin. It won't just sound like an effect, it'll sound like a new instrument!

4. Experiment With Software Effects

Probably the funnest part of playing an electric violin, you get to experiment with all kinds of effects! Again, with a clean and direct sound from a good electric violin, you can throw on some reverb, echo, delay, distortion, etc.

Software effects have been getting extremely advanced as well. Not only do they sound more real and organic, but options are becoming endless. You can use effects to make your violin sound like a synthesizer, or you can use a vocoder to give your violin a vocal quality as demonstrated in this Daft Punk Medley video by Jason Yang on Youtube.

5. Play Louder

best electric violin sound

In 2020, volume is important.Especially when you're playing in live venues, or with other musicians that are playing amplified instruments. Even classical musicians playing at weddings may find themselves focusing a lot of their energy on playing loud so that they can be heard.

With an electric violin, you have the ability to amplify your sound by simply plugging it into any amp or speakers. Even weddings nowadays often have a DJ with speakers that you can plug your instrument into.

Plus there areacoustic electric violins that allow you to perform like a traditional violin without having to plug it in. So you get the best of both worlds.

6. Record Bass Lines With 5 String Electric Violins

A common type of electric violin is the 5-string electric violin. Perfect for violinists who are “all about the bass”. Violins are commonly used for lush melodies and harmonies. But sometimes, we wish we could just play a deep bass line on a low string.

Well now you can! With the fifth C string, you can get some pretty lower frequencies that are suitable for laying a bass line. Plus with a good digital preamp, you can increase the bass frequency of your instrument to give it that big, full bass tone.

5 string electric violins are also great for fiddling!

7. Look Cool!

cool elegant looking violins

Electric violins are still very rare in the world of music, making them very unique. And they now come in all sorts of designs and different materials. If you bust out your electric violin, we guarantee you’ll have people asking “wow, what is that?”.

The electric violin’s sound is also not dependent on the body. Which means you can put stickers on your electric violin without worrying about how it’ll affect the sound. Truly making the instrument your own.

Plus it’s justa great ice breaker to tell people that you’re an electric violinist!


Electric violins are really designed for the modern musician. You can amplify it to perform at live venues, you can record with it through any recording software on your computer, and you can experiment and design new sounds through all the available digital effects; many which are free nowadays.

We’ve mentioned it a few times in this article, and it’s worth mentioning again. The key is a good electric violin. You’ll lose a lot of inspiration and creativity playing an electric violin that does not deliver a clean sound. It’s a lot of frustration that simply isn’t worth the money you save.

Every musician is looking for that “next” sound. And most music producers are doing it through software instruments and simple midi keyboards. However, if you play the violin, you’ve got a skillset that is very hard to replicate. Plus a melody line that can take 10 minutes to create on a midi keyboard may only take you seconds on the violin.

Combine your violin skills with all the available recording technology and music sharing tools, and you’ve got your own unique “edge” in the world of music. You just need a good electric violin to get started.

1 Response

Susan Shane
Susan Shane

December 17, 2021

Can a silent electric violin cable go directly into a computer, or does the players always need the preamp.?

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