Electric Cellos
Questions? 866.742.7898
Electric Cellos at Shar
Selecting an electric instrument is a daunting process with many different designs to choose from. To make the right choice, first consider what you intend to do with it.

For example, a beginning cellist who would like to experiment with their friends in a band setting might want to dip their toe in with the Plug 'n Play or Yamaha Compact Silent as they offers a quality instrument at an affordable price. An intermediate student cellist, who is attending a music camp or is on their way to a college dorm, will be very interested in instruments like the Plug 'n Play, Yamaha Collapsible, or Yamaha Silent, for their silent practice features (like headphone jack and CD/auxiliary input) since they will need to spend longer hours honing their craft.

Traditional players who are "gigging" in Churches, weddings and festivals will prefer the warm mellow tone of the the Plug 'n Play, and the Yamaha Silent models for their attempts to faithfully reproduce the acoustic tone of a cello in an electric setting.

On the other hand, experimental players who are playing in rock and jazz bands may find some crossover appeal in the Fender, Yamaha Electric, or Zeta Jazz and Strados models (call for more details on the Jazz and Strados: 800.742.7898).

Professional performers who are very active and experienced will want to narrow it down to an instrument by NS Design.

Consider how you will most likely be using your electric instrument and then browse our selection online. Our Electric Instrument Specialists are available to help as well, just call us at 866.742.7898.
Getting Started
Stepping into the amplified arena of music performance can be as easy as installing a pickup on your current instrument. A piezo transducer responds to pressure on the instrument's bridge (either in the wing slot, under the bridge feet, or from within the bridge itself). This makes piezo pickups the optimal choice for bowed string instruments.

The standard pickups offered by Kremona and Fishman attach to the wing slot of the instrument's bridge and usually require no alteration to the instrument. The Kremona Pickup is a budget piezo model with low output gain, but the piezo is encased in a small soft piece of wood that seems to take some of the edge off of bow "attack" noise. The Fishman C100 has more output gain and is popular with more professional players.

A professional pickup is the Realist pickup designed by David Gage in collaboration with NS Design. The Realist is a transducer in a vinyl sleeve and rests between the bridge feet and the violin top, which puts it exactly where the sound is transferred from the strings to the sound board. It's mounting hardware is extremely compact and with such a high output gain it requires no external preamp. Though installation is relatively easy and can be done by the customer, the transducer raises the bridge height by about 1mm and some players may want to have their bridge height lowered by a qualified technician.

All piezo pickups require the use of a preamp to match the impedance of the pickup with the amplifier being used as well as to boost the pickup's signal. Features that tend to vary the most include the number of EQ controls and the existence of notch filters, compression, XLR outputs, and even 2-channel mixing capabilities and phantom power. Fishman preamps tend to have a smoother, more ambient sound while the LR Baggs preamp leans toward a tighter, more focused quality.

The small but powerful SHAR amps are included in our own outfits. They are portable, and are perfect for practicing in the home or studio at low volumes. Bowed string instruments have such a wide range of frequencies and dynamics that we recommend an "acoustic" instrument amplifier for live performances. Violins and violas enjoy the best results with amps that have a tweeter to accommodate the higher frequencies, while cellos and basses should use bass amplifiers.

Compare Electric Cellos
Use our handy chart to compare the features of electric cello at Shar.
Shar Item # PPC14 YC1 YC2 YC3  
Model SHAR Plug 'n Play Yamaha SVC-100 Silent Cello Yamaha SVC-200 Silent Cello Yamaha SVC-50 Silent Compact  
Selling Points Silent Practice, Accompaniment Input, Price Silent Practice, Accompaniment Input, Price Silent Practice, Accompaniment Input, Price, Collapsible Silent Practice, Accompaniment Input, Lightweight, Price  

Body / Soundboard - Spruce Spruce Alder Wood  
Neck / Scroll - Maple (lacquered) Maple (lacquered) Maple (lacquered)  
Fingerboard Ebony Ebony Ebony Ebony  
Tailpiece Custom Metal Metal w/4 Tuners Metal w/4 Tuners Ebony  
Tuning Pegs Ebony Ebony Geared (black) Geared (chrome)  
Shape / Bouts - Spruce & Maple Frame Removable Upper & Lower Bouts Removable Aluminum Lower Bout  

Pickup System Piezo (single) Piezo (single) Piezo (single) Piezo (single)  
Tone Enhancement Reverb (1 pre-set) Reverb (3 pre-sets) Reverb (3 pre-sets) Reverb (3 pre-sets)  
Pre-amp Intermediate Intermediate Intermediate Intermediate  
Outputs Mini Line-Out; Mini Headphone-Out 1/4" Line-Out; 1/4" Headphone-Out 1/4" Line-Out; 1/4" Headphone-Out 1/4" Line-Out; 1/4" Headphone-Out  
Input Auxiliary Input Auxiliary Input Auxiliary Input Auxiliary Input  
Player Controls Volume Master Volume; Auxiliary Volume Master Volume; Auxiliary Volume Master Volume; Auxiliary Volume  

Standard Strings Generic Steel Yamaha Yamaha Yamaha  
Color Choices Black Medium Brown Medium Brown Black  
Sold As Outfit w/case, Bow Instrument & Bag Instrument & Bag Instrument & Bag  
Country of Origin China Japan Japan Japan  
MSRP - $2,595 $2,795 $1,950  
Shar Retail $1,100 $2,026.50 $2,236.50 $1,466.50  

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Have Questions? Call our Electric Instrument Specialists at 866.742.7898