Stroh is a maker using Stroviols, as a trade name for their phono instruments, which include violin, viola, cello, bass, ukulele, slide guitar, and mandolin. There are also numerous Stroviols one string phonofiddles made. These instruments are named after their designer, John Matthias Augustus Stroh, an electrical engineer in London, who patented it. On 4 May 1899, Stroh applied for a UK patent, GB9418 titled Improvements in Violins and other Stringed Instruments which was accepted on 24 March 1900.
Stroh violins are much louder than a standard wooden violin, and its directional projection of sound made it particularly useful in the early days of phonographic recording. Since regular violins recorded weakly with the old acoustic-mechanical recording method, Stroh violins were common in recording studios, but became rarer after record companies switched to the new electric microphone recording technology in the second half of the 1920s. The Stroh produces significantly more volume, and it has a surprisingly good tone, nearly comparable to that of a standard violin. On early records the violin can almost be recognized by its thin whining tone. The Stroh violin successfully replaced that limitation with a full, nearly accurate violin sound.
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