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Don Rickert Musician Shop

Custom 5-String Violas by Don Rickert

Contact us at 706-896-0909 for pricing

Custom 5-String Violas by Don Rickert

Contact us at 706-896-0909 for pricing
SKU:
Viola5String
Weight:
2.00 LBS
Availability:
Available now!
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Product Description

Our email is [email protected] and phone number is (706) 896-0909. You can also use the "Contact" link on this page.

5-string violas are similar to 5-string violins, only bigger. The typical tuning for each type of instrument is usually the same, which is, from low to high, C, G, D, A, E; however, other tunings are possible, if not popular. One does see 5-string violas tuned, from low to high, F, C, G, D, A; that is, like a regular viola but with an additional F-string at the low end. This type of tuning will be rare in the short term, as literally the ONLY maker of viola F-strings, SuperSensitive, went out of business due to the COVID-19 pandemic. SuperSensitive was acquired by D’Addario, and have re-started the manufacture of the SuperSensitive Red Label line of strings for beginning students. It is unknown whether manufacture of the more expensive SuperSensitive Sensicore strings, which include strings for octave viola, viola F-strings and the like, will ever resume.

So, if a 5-string viola is tuned like a 5-string violin, why bother? That is a really good question. One reason is that a 5-string viola is, well a viola sized instrument, making a more comfortable instrument for an experienced violist. Second, a 5-string viola, owing to its larger size and greater vibrating string length, will have a bigger sound than a 5-string violin. This is especially true for our custom 5-string violas with deeper ribs.

There is no single price for our 5-string violas, as it depends completely on the size of the instrument (e.g., 15”, 16”, etc.) and whether the instrument has conventionally proportioned ribs or custom deep ribs. That being said, the base price will somewhere in the neighborhood of $4,200.

The instrument depicting in this product listing is a custom 15.5” 5-string viola with 40mm deep ribs. An instrument just like that one would be about $4600.

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