the best harp
Arpa – Opinions, Analysis and Buying Guide in 2022
Probably one of the oldest instruments is the harp and its tone commonly described as angelic has allowed it to survive countless design changes over time. So, today, we can find harp players, who add this peculiar sound to compositions of modern genres such as pop or rock. If you intend to get a harp, we invite you to discover some interesting options on the net, such as the Bucca Sonic 10 cm, which stands out for its traditional and attractive design, or the Rrower 052-342-628, a harp Celtic type with 15 strings and made of high quality and resistant wood.
Opinions on the best harps on the market
The variety of instruments that we know as harps is very wide, but below we show you some interesting options not only because of their tradition and design, but also because of the acceptance and evaluation that users have made of them.
Bucca Sonic 10cm
If you are interested in a mouth harp, this model is based on the traditional ones used in Vienna and are known as Dan Moi; that despite their apparent simple design, they are an instrument capable of producing a very complex variety of sounds and nuances in the hands of their performer.
In addition, it has a cylindrical bamboo box, lined with a soft and colorful textile design, which allows the instrument to be stored for transport. This prevents damage to the harp, but also adds a craft value that makes it attractive.
On the other hand, we can add that it is a model made of brass and bronze alloy, so it is resistant to corrosion, but without ceasing to be affordable, so you will not have to allocate too much money to the project of acquiring this instrument, so that it could be qualified as the best harp for both collectors and players.
Let’s analyze in detail the qualities of this harp, which is one of the cheapest, so that you can decide if it is the instrument that best meets your expectations.
Materials: Because it is a model made of brass and bronze alloy, it will not be damaged too easily or rust.
Design: Its box with textile fabric and traditional design could be attractive.
Usage: A wide variety of sounds and nuances can be achieved with good playing technique.
Affordable: Thanks to its affordable cost, it will prevent you from having to spend too much money.
Color: The color of the box cannot be selected, but it will probably be to your liking because it is of a handmade type.
The Fuzeau 4996 mouth harp is another interesting proposal to play your favorite compositions with this particular instrument. This model has a length of 8 centimeters, from end to end, being suitable for use from six years of age.
The construction of the piece allows for different interpretations, being especially suitable for users who have just arrived in this world. To do this, it incorporates a closed design, with a good-sized tongue. An approach where it is easy to interpret all kinds of pieces and move between the notes with solvency.
Otherwise, the harp has quality materials and proper tuning. It also has a format that makes it easy to place the instrument between the teeth in the correct position. An approach that, together with its adjusted price, places it as the best value for money harp, within its segment.
So that you give the note with quality, we leave you some more details of this classic mouth harp.
Format : The format is very useful to perform all kinds of interpretations with solvency.
Size : Its size makes it ideal for use by all types of users, large and small.
Reed : The reed makes it easy to move and achieve the most classic sound of this instrument.
Approach : The design is suitable for newcomers, but may fall short for the most advanced.
Painting : The painting of the piece has an improvable resistance, so it should be well cared for.
The Celtic harp is, for many users, the best harp of the moment. Something that has to do with its specific design, which we can enjoy in models like this one from Rrower. This harp has a high-quality solid wood construction, which adequately supports the most intensive use.
In its body, we find a total of 15 strings in a size of 17 inches, which makes it easy to perform all kinds of performances. Something that helps the quality of its tone and a wide headstock, with which it is easy to keep the strings in the correct tension according to what you need.
Regarding its tuning, the instrument is presented in the key of C major, with a flat C note to give richness and a sharp F, to easily generate the sound details of each piece. A format that also generates a high volume in the sound, to hear everything better.
If you are not sure which is the best harp you can buy, take a look at the detailed analysis of this model.
Format: The 15-string format gives a good width to your performances.
Body: The body of the harp is made of solid, high-quality wood, withstanding use well.
Headstock: The headstock maintains the high quality standard of the product, to last longer.
Bag: The harp is accompanied by a nylon bag for storage.
Care: It is important to keep the wood always in good condition, to further extend the life of the instrument.
Canigou Heather CAME0005
The Canigó Heather CAME0005 Celtic harp is another good option within this market segment. In this case, the product expands its deployment to 22 strings, offering greater sound richness and more possibilities to interpret your favorite pieces.
The harp has measures of 90 centimeters wide by 45 high and 17 thick, in a usual size for this type of instrument. As for its deployment, the scale ranges from C-1 to C+2, with string lengths of 75.5 millimeters to 17.5 millimeters.
All the strings are made of high quality nylon, with a cam system that helps you to modify the scale comfortably. Ideal to incorporate the semitones corresponding to your interpretations in a simple way. In this area, we also find the headstock, to optimize tuning as necessary.
We summarize below the highlights of this beautiful Celtic harp.
Strings: Its 22 strings and its cam system give you a wide variety when performing your performances.
Finish: The finish has a very elegant design, with a very special carving on the wood that is not usual in these products.
Accessories: It is accompanied by the storage case and the adjustment key, so you do not have to buy anything else to use it.
Weight: The weight of the piece is 9 kilos, so you must be careful when handling it.
Rwqrwq 19 Strings
Among the best harps of 2022 there is also room for an Irish harp, like this model from Rwqrwq. We are talking about a traditional court harp, measuring 40 centimeters high by 26 wide.
In this space, we have a total of 19 strings, mounted on a high-quality wooden body in the shape of a moon. In addition, the space includes the necessary blocks to give a good output to the generated sound, obtaining as a result a warm and very pleasant tone. So the classic sweet sound of the harp is more than guaranteed.
For the rest, the product is accompanied by everything necessary for its use, including a tightening wrench, ropes, sheath or spikes. All this in a versatile proposal and raised both for newcomers and for the most experienced users.
Although we are not sure which is the best current harp brand, this Rwqrwq model could very well belong to it due to its design and quality.
Design: The crescent-shaped design is as elegant as it is efficient when it comes to generating good sound.
Strings: The 19-string array gives an adequate richness to the sound and offers good scale coverage.
Accessories : It is accompanied by all the necessary accessories for its use, such as picks, key or cover.
Cams: This harp does not include the cam system of other models, with which to change the tones of the strings.
Introducing children to music can be simple, especially if they have at hand an instrument with a striking sound and easy execution, as offered by this small harp model from the Hape brand, which, due to its dimensions of 40 x 20.1 x 3.4 cm with a weight of less than 1 kg, it is an instrument that children can easily transport wherever they need it.
In addition, you do not have to worry about each string achieving the right tone, since a tuning key is included in the set, which will allow you to always have the harp in tune. While on the other hand, it must be added that the sheet music system it offers is very intuitive for children, and users mention that 5 musical pieces are added to the set, which help them to start experimenting with the instrument, so that perhaps in a short time they could understand how to play their own melodies.
If you don’t know what harp to buy and you have a small child at home, this model could be an interesting investment that not only entertains them, but also brings them closer to the world of music. Below we analyze its qualities.
Dimensions: Due to its small size and light weight, it is an easy instrument to carry.
Tones: This instrument offers the possibility of interpreting various melodies due to its 15 strings.
Affordable: You don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a suitable instrument.
Accessories: The set includes sheet music, pick and tuning key, so you would have everything you need to use it.
Tuning: The instrument may not arrive in tune, but with the key and a tuner, you should have no trouble getting it in tune.
Our selection would not be complete without a Jew’s harp, such as the Altaistore Lighthouse model. This product features high-quality stainless steel construction and a traditional cutaway format, making it easy to execute any performance, whether you’re a beginner or a professional user.
We are talking about a harp made by hand by the master Dmitry Glazyrin and it comes from Siberia, which shows us its quality. Something that is perceived in details such as the fixing system of the central reed, its design or a much more ergonomic body than that of other conventional mouth harps.
This approach offers up to 12 ways to extract sound in its most basic way, all of them without damaging the teeth. The instrument is accompanied by a wooden box topped with a leather cord, so that you have the harp well stored and protected.
We leave you the results of our analysis, so you know what to expect from this instrument.
Format : Its format generates a high quality when executing your interpretations, also suitable for any skill level.
Safety : This piece does not damage the teeth, unlike other mouth harps that are worse made.
Case : The wooden case is of high quality and includes a very elegant finish, adequately protecting the instrument when not in use.
Learning : It is important to learn to handle the instrument well to get the most out of it, beyond those 12 basic notes that we have mentioned.
How to choose the best harps
If you have some doubts regarding the features that could be important when making a comparison of harps, do not worry; Here are some recommendations that could be useful in our guide to buying the best harp, with which we seek to help you better identify the model that meets your needs.
Harps are instruments that have a very ancient history, which is why we can find them in many different shapes, sizes and sound qualities. So you could start discarding models from knowing what type of harp you are interested in.
For example, if you are looking for one of small dimensions, a mouth harp or a Dan Moi type could be a good alternative; since they are instruments that measure around 10 cm and you can easily carry them with you. But this does not mean that they are limited in sounds, since they are capable of reproducing a wide range of tones, which you could discover as you learn the techniques to use them. In addition, their introduction to music is very varied, being possible to use them both as a complement to traditional and modern music, due to their interesting sound that is even often emulated with electronic synthesizers.
But if you are looking for other types of options, there are well-known variants of harps such as string harps. Among them we also find classifications, some of the most used being the Celtic harp, which is numerous in strings and therefore in variety of tones, which gives the musician the opportunity to interpret an extensive repertoire of melodies.
The size of this type of harps can vary from very small, around 30 cm, to some that exceed a meter in height. Generally, these harps can have a high cost, because they are instruments made up of numerous pieces and the complexity of their structure is a challenge for luthiers. So if you’re wondering how much it costs, its size and number of strings may be an important variable in determining this trait, but there may be some good, inexpensive options out there.
The materials chosen for the manufacture of harps vary depending on their type, finding bronze and brass options for those that are played with the mouth; but when it comes to stringed harps, the most common is to find fine woods such as spruce with some others such as rosewood, which can be chosen for the soundboard or specific pieces due to their qualities of hardness and resonance.
Our recommendation is that you look for quality materials in any case. Especially in mouth harps, it is sought that they be alloys resistant to corrosion, in this way you will avoid putting an article contaminated with traces of rust on your lips. While for the strings, what is sought is that the frame that holds the strings is rigid enough to withstand all the tension of having the harp in tune.
Speaking of tuning, this is another important point you could consider. We recommend that you check the register of tones that you can achieve with the model that has been to your liking. Remembering that the more strings you have, the greater the versatility of the instrument, and the better it is that these strings have the tones that are most attractive to you.
On the other hand, you might also be interested in knowing if it has semitones or some kind of pedal or levers to easily access midtones while you are playing the instrument.
Along with the harp, some manufacturers add accessories that could be basic and that buying them separately can be a problem because not all of them are compatible with your model. Some items could be a transport or storage case to prevent your instrument from being damaged, spare strings or an instruction manual, with which you could have more information regarding how to tune or care for your harp.
When we talk about this point, we are mainly referring to string harps, which are the ones that can lose their tuning over time or suffer the normal deterioration of some replaceable parts. It is recommended that you have a set of strings on hand, in case one of them breaks. On the other hand, it could also be useful for you to check if any tool has been included in the harp set to keep the instrument in tune, since some harps have pegs with very specific shapes, which require a very particular tuning key.
Frequently asked questions
Q1: Where does the Celtic harp originate?
The harp in general has a very ancient origin, which makes it difficult to determine exactly where it was built for the first time and how the versions of this instrument arrived in the Celtic region. However, there are indications that it already played an important role in society in Egyptian cultures, which leads us to suspect that travelers could have brought models to present-day Scotland, where vestiges corresponding to the 8th century can already be found. These ancient models of harps are already much more similar to the harp that we currently know, their main function being to accompany poetry.
Q2: How to play the mouth harp?
To make this peculiar instrument sound, the first thing you need to do is hold it correctly. In a vertical position and without touching the central section, since this is the one that vibrates and will cause it to resonate. Now it is recharged from the side touching the cheek, taking care that the central rod is free and with the end bent out of the mouth. Then it is surrounded with the lips and while with one finger the rod is pressed, with the opposite hand the body of the harp is held. If you want a higher or lower pitch, you will need to make the space of the tongue wider or narrower.
Q3: How to tune the harp?
As with other string instruments, it is the tension of each of the strings that gives it the correct sound. So you must have a string of the corresponding thickness and tighten it with the peg until you achieve the desired tone.
To achieve this more easily, you can use a digital tuner, with which you can guide yourself precisely, so that each string has the pitch that has been assigned to it, preferably following a progressive order on the chromatic scale to make it more comfortable..
Q4: Is a harp and a lyre the same?
Although both instruments have a similar concept, there are differences between them that define each one differently. The lyre is generally smaller and this is because it was designed to accompany its player while standing, giving him freedom of movement to walk while reciting poetry. When it comes to the number of strings, it can also be more limited. There are some with 6 or 7 strings, although in Egypt it is known that they had up to 18.
Q5: Why is the harp shaped like that?
The Celtic harp has a basic triangular shape, where the low registers are found on the longer strings and the high registers are at the opposite end, closer to the performer. This peculiar shape has two main functions, one is to control the tension of the strings, which can reach 2 and a half tons in some models, so in addition to having a shape that can tolerate it structurally, it must be made with very specific and resistant materials.
Q6: How to make a laser harp with arduino?
This project is quite simple in concept, it is based on connecting some LDR sensors to the Arduino board, which will be pointed through laser lights to activate them. When the board detects that the laser signal has been lost, then it will emit the sound of the corresponding note. The more sensors that are placed, the more tones it will be possible to play. Other elements are also necessary, such as a VS1053 sound card, a button to control the system on and off, as well as a speaker.
Q7: Is it worth buying a handmade harp?
This will depend on the purpose being pursued with the harp. If it is a more decorative than musical object, then the design and aesthetic elements will have greater value than its acoustic qualities. So if it meets your expectations in terms of this feature, it could be worth it. But if the goal is to perform music, then it is worth taking a hard look at the quality of the instrument and the sound it is capable of providing, as well as the materials it is made of, to determine if it will be durable.
Q8: How to play the Ayacucho harp?
There are many different techniques, being the tradition or style to interpret the one that determines if the harpist will concentrate more on the left or right hand, but in general, the western harmonization rules are not always respected, but a great amount of harmonization is used. usually double note chords.
How to use a harp
This beautiful instrument, unlike others, is not usually acquired in beginner or professional harpist modalities. So if you have purchased a harp, chances are it will provide you with many hours of music. For this reason, it is worth knowing some basic recommendations that will help you keep it better for longer.
Choose a suitable place to place it
In general, these instruments are made with different woods, so the first thing you should take into account when taking care of it is to keep your harp away from the effects that sudden changes in temperature, excessive humidity and the risk of receiving a blow could mean. accidental.
Starting with temperature changes, it is better that you choose a special place to place it when it is not being used; a place away from any exposure to direct sunlight. It should also not be near a fireplace or heat source that could radiate to the instrument.
As for humidity, evaluate where you live and if it is a humid climate, it is best to have an appropriate case on hand to cover your harp. It might even be a good idea to place some moisture-absorbing product around it, which you can leave inside the same case.
Keep the wood hydrated
To prevent the wood from weakening, it is convenient that you moisten it through a special product for wood. This will also prevent it from being susceptible to moisture by interposing a waterproof layer between weather conditions and the wood. You should apply it only in the necessary amount, without exceeding it and with a cloth that is always dry.
clean the strings
Our fingers usually deposit traces of grease and acids on the strings, which deteriorate the condition of the strings. These accessories are usually not affordable, so it is better to take care of them to avoid frequent change of them. A good practice is to always clean the strings after playing or practicing and you can do this with a dry cloth.
Take care of the tuning and the type of strings
The tension of the strings is part of the structure of the instrument, so you have to maintain it, but also be aware of possible extraordinary situations, such as traveling on a plane. This subjects the instrument to pressure changes that will need to be addressed not only by lowering the tuning of the instrument, but also by additional protection of the entire instrument.
In the event that it is necessary to change a string, do not forget that it takes a certain time for these to stabilize their sound, so it is normal that in their first days you have to be adding tension so that they achieve their correct tone. But after this period, you will be able to keep it.
Likewise, avoid mounting steel strings on an instrument designed for nylon strings and vice versa. The change can be tempting because of the different nuance they offer, but this can subject the structure to an abrupt change that could even break it.