Carbon fiber harps

Posted In: Amateur Harpists

  • Keymaster
    HBrock25 on #157193

    Does ant one have an opinion on the sound of carbon fiber folk harps as compared to Quality wood harps of the same size?
    Thanks very much.

    Tacye on #157194

    Have you found these sound samples?

    tony-morosco on #157195

    Heck, I have an opinion on EVERYTHING. If my opinion is worth anything is a matter of…. well…. opinion.

    From what I have heard of the carbon fiber heartland harp, I like them. Compared to other folk strung lever harps I think the sound is very comparable, and the advantages of a light weight body that is virtually impervious to adverse environmental conditions.

    If I did a lot of playing on lever harp at outdoor events I would definitely consider one.

    alice-freeman on #157196

    As an owner of a traditional pedal harp, two Triplett lever harps and a carbon fiber harp, I have an opinion.

    When you pluck the string on a wood harp, let’s say you hear 7 harmonic overtones besides the original tone.

    When you pluck the same string on a carbon fiber harp, by comparison you might hear only 4 harmonic overtones besides the original tone.

    The tone is very pleasant and definitely sounds like a harp — it’s just a little different from a wood harp when played side-by-side. Alone, I think it sounds terrific.

    In the mid-range of a carbon fiber harp you can order nylon, fluorocarbon or gut strings. I think the nylon sounds brighter and the fluorocarbon sounds a bit more mellow. (I have fluorocarbon strings for stability in tuning; one of my students has nylon on the same model — the “Delight”.) I have not heard gut strings on a carbon fiber harp.

    Hope this helps.

    — Alice in windy Wyoming

    Martha Tacha on #157197

    Thank you very much for taking the time to respond. I’m trying to make some pretty heady decisions, and the opinion of experienced people really helps.

    unknown-user on #157198

    Hi….this is a little late and you probably have your harp by now. I have a carbon-fibre-composite harp (Andrew Thom) and love it. I had rented a wooden harp from my teacher for about 5 mths before purchasing the Thom harp….and am a beginner, so I don’t have much experience to offer any credible comparison. However, I DO love the sound of this harp. The only reason I did not buy a Heartland harp was that I would have had to risk buying ‘blind’ over the internet (I’m in Oz). I knew it would be the only harp I would ever afford….but already, I am itching to get another harp….and still have my eye on the Heartland carbon-fibre Harps…big and little.

    My harp is still quite heavy (remember, it is composite, not completely carbon-fibre)….I was wondering if you bought the Heartland Harp and could help me understand how it feels different to play a much much lighter harp. For instance, does the lack of ‘resistance’ in harp weight, affect technique ie. do you find yourself using compensatory movements? If my questions sound ignorant, it is because I am. I appreciate all responses.

    (Every time I see those Heartland carbon fibre harps my heart misses a beat.)

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