26 string harp advise

  • Participant
    Kate Roberts on #254356

    Hello,

    I was wondering if anyone has any experience of Turmennan harps from Ireland?

    I am looking for a 26 string harp (I cannot afford a 34 string atm) and their learner 26 model looks pretty good.

    It is similar shape to a Harpsicle and also has a similar stand that can be purchased separately. It has CF strings and can be fitted with just C and F Camac levers or any combination up to full levers.

    Eventually I will purchase a 34 string but would a 26 be OK for a couple of years, and could I get away with only some levers?

    The other harps I’ve been looking at are the Derwent 26 and the Morwenna Rose by Hands on Harps.

    Ive also looked at the Camac Odyssey, the Ravenna 26 and the Salvi Juno 27 which all look great but these are much more expensive. I think it would be more prudent to buy a more affordable harp now, which would at least mean I can keep playing (I recently hired a 34 string) whilst saving for a larger harp in the future.

    Many thanks for your time.

    Participant
    charles-nix on #254358

    That all depends on how far you have progressed and what music you want to play.

    For classical harp, unless you are a complete beginner, or unless you are comfortable making or altering arrangements, you may find it limiting.

    Therapy harpists may never use anything larger professionally.

    Also, consider what levers are installed. C and F means that you can play in three major keys. Is everything you do play or want to play in one of those keys? Or can you transpose?

    I think everyone may need a lot more information to give you sound advice.

    Participant
    wil-weten on #254359

    Have you thought of buying a Camac Odyssey (27 strings) or a Ravenna 26 now, and selling it later on when you feel you need a floor harp? You would easily be capable of selling these very nice sounding harps, contrary to much cheaper harps.

    You may also think of buying a Ravenna 26 second hand. That way, you may have a real nice harp for a real nice price now, and with a bit of luck, you will be able to sell it later on for almost the same price you paid for your second hand.

    As the Camac Odysseys have just recently entered the market, you probably won’t be able to find one second hand.

    You may also think of searching for a second hand floor harp (34-40 strings). Depending on where you live, some older, fine quality harps can be bought for real attractive prices from reputable harp shops.
    I don’t know how these shops operate now during covid times, though.

    Participant
    naisha on #254360

    Also, I think you could consider renting to buy. At least Camac lets you rent a harp and after some months if you want to buy it, what you’ve been paying is discounted to the total price. It’s a good way to buy it if your budget is limited now but you know you could afford it in let’s say 6 months. Like a layaway for part of the price. I can’t really help with the quality of the harps you’ve mentioned because I have never played any of them. I own a Camac Hermine (34str) though, and I’m very happy with it. I would personally find fewer strings limiting, and I don’t know how to transpose (yet), so having only levers on C and F would also be limiting to me. As they’ve already said, it depends on the player. Where do you live? If you live in Europe, Camac and Salvi for example will have better prices than Dusty Strings and vice versa. The importing fees and exchange rates is also a thing to consider.

    Participant
    Kate Roberts on #254363

    Thank you for the replies.

    Charles I would like to play mainly Celtic and early music, with a little classical too. I have no aspirations to play professionally or even publicly. Playing would be purely for pleasure and I think I would be happy in the shorter term to find music written for a smaller harp. I could transpose I think although I imagine that that would become tiresome.

    Wil I’ve looked at the Ravenna and the Odyssey, they are out of my current price range but I am certainly keeping a look out for used ones. There are a couple of used Teifi Robyns that I have seen that I could maybe afford.

    Naisha I actually rented a Hermine and it was lovely. I am just not able to financially rent and save at the same time even with part of the rent going towards the final cost.

    Participant
    wil-weten on #254364

    Kate, if you are thinking of a Teifi harp, I guess you may live in the UK. Teifi harps are great harps with really nice levers, so finding a used one, may be a very interesting option.

    Edit: depending on your situation, you might benefit from the Assisted Instrument Purchase Scheme (AIPS) which would mean that you don’t have to pay VAT on your instrument. AIPS is available to students in full time education at an LEA (Local Education Authority) school and/or receiving music tuition at an LEA funded Music Centre.

    Another possibility, would be a 34 string Hempson Elysian harp. This is typical harp for beginners on a budget. It’s way better than pakistani harps, but you can’t compare its sound and levers to those of Camac, Salvi, Teifi, Dusty etc. Still, you may prefer it over a 26 string harp.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by wil-weten.
    Participant
    Kate Roberts on #254366

    Thanks Wil,

    Yes I’m in the UK. In Wales actually so I have seen a few Teifis second hand.

    I am aware of the AIPS. I will look into it again as an option.

    I’ll hold off on the 26 string I think and continue to save.

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