A Guide to CodaBow Violin, Viola & Cello Bow Models
The bow makers and engineers at CodaBow use advanced materials to bring consistency and affordability to their great bow designs. CodaBow's graphite and kevlar bow sticks have the same performance agility and tone-drawing capability as fine wood bows that are several times more expensive. Whether for use as a primary performance bow or as a travel / backup bow, there can be little doubt that CodaBow bows represent some of the best value in the strings industry. If you’re looking to invest in a bow, the question then becomes not whether to choose a CodaBow but which CodaBow to choose. The following guide breaks down the choices for you to aid in your decision-making process.
CodaBow makes six distinct bow models that are available for the violin, viola and cello; Prodigy, Luma, Joule, NX, SX, and GX. Let’s begin by listing what these models share in common:
- All six models are available in violin, viola and cello versions
- All feature a graphite diamond weave shaft and composite wedges/plugs
- The frog of each is made of eco-friendly composite XEBONY®
- All (excluding Prodigy) feature GlobalBow™ technology, which permits you to cross any border on the globe
Next let’s look at the three categories of bows so we can begin to break down some of the differences between them...
Student model — The ‘Prodigy’ bow is the cost-effective entry bow in the CodaBow line. It offers the same design principles and consistency you can expect from the graphite and kevlar composite stick. You save money with more basic fittings and a slightly less advanced stick material that sacrifices only some of the bow agility that is not necessary for intermediate students anyway. The Prodigy is also the only CodaBow available in either a 3/4 or 4/4 size.
Diamond Collection — Available in NX, SX and GX models, the Diamond Collection bows are designed for advanced to professional players. The goal of the engineering is to replicate the agility and tone-drawing properties of high quality to fine wood bows, with an appearance, fit and finish good enough to please discerning classical players.
Specialized designs — The ‘Joule’ and the ‘Luma’ employ the same great design principles and materials as are found in the Diamond Collection bows, yet are tweaked to serve other playing tastes or purposes.
- The Joule bow, weighing slightly more than the Diamond bows, is made for powerful tone and was originally conceived with extended range instruments (5, 6 and 7-stringed) in mind. That said, they are favored by many 4-string players as well.
- The Luma serves players for whom a lighter, more agile and responsive feel is desired. Weighing in at a couple of grams less than the Diamond series, this bow is much loved by fiddlers and classical players alike.
PriceBudget is always a primary consideration when shopping, so without further ado, here’s how the CodaBow models sort out by price, from lowest to highest…
Follow the quick links below for updated pricing on violin, viola and cello versions of these models.
Weight and balance distribution is a huge deal for bow buyers. All of the CodaBow models are remarkably well-balanced. As mentioned above, the Luma and Joule bows both employ slight weight variations (lighter and heavier, respectively), the Joules extra gram or so being added at the tip to favor tone-drawing, the Luma's reduced weight distribution to favor facility. Here’s how the bows rank by weight, from lightest to heaviest, albeit within a narrow range...
- Light — Luma
- Average — Prodigy, NX, SX, GX
- Heavier — Joule
All CodaBow frogs are designed by Walter Paulus, who is considered the world’s premier frog maker. All frogs are made of XEBONY®, a durable, attractive alternative to endangered ebony wood. The Joule features the ‘Turbo’ frog design, which increases effective hair length while preserving thumb position and dynamic balance. The Luma features the streamlined ‘Aero’ design, which reduces and redistributes frog mass strategically along the shaft, enhancing facility while reducing overall bow weight.
Materials, Fittings and Appearance
Another differentiating factor between the various CodaBow models is that as they increase in price, the fittings get nicer and nicer. Even the most modestly priced Prodigy is a very nice and professional looking bow. On the high end, the GX features sterling silver fittings, Moroccan goat skin grip and a convincing pernambuco-colored graphite weave shaft, complimenting its superior construction with a classy look.
The NX bows have the most custom look options, including a violin version with our own custom EVS logo-ed frog and four "gemstone" color alternatives to the standard brown; ruby, amethyst, sapphire and emerald, available for violin or cello.
All CodaBows are backed by a warranty that is activated when you register your bow purchase with the manufacturer. The Prodigy comes with a 5-year limited warranty, the Diamond GX comes with a lifetime warranty; all other models (Luma, Joule, NX, SX) come under a 10-year limited warranty.
Finally, it’s time to see these six CodaBow models side by side in the comparison chart below...
|Shaft||Graphite Diamond Weave||Graphite Diamond Weave||Graphite Diamond Weave||Graphite Diamond Weave||Graphite Diamond Weave||Graphite Diamond Weave|
|Acoustic Core||Blended Kevlar||Blended Kevlar||Kevlar||Kevlar||Kevlar||Blended Kevlar|
|Tint||Brown||Brown||Natural Graphite||Pernambuco||Natural Graphite||Brown|
|Sizes||3/4 and 4/4||4/4||4/4||4/4||4/4||4/4|
|Frog Inlay||Engraved||Coda||Coda||Coda||Sterling Silver||Coda|
|Slide||Natural Carbon Fiber||Natural Carbon Fiber||Natural Carbon Fiber Weave||Tinted Carbon Fiber Weave||Natural Carbon Fiber Weave||Natural Carbon Fiber Weave|
|Fittings||Nickel Silver||Nickel Silver||Nickel Silver||Sterling Silver||Nickel Silver||Nickel Silver|
|Grip||Moroccan Leather||Moroccan Leather||Moroccan Leather||Moroccan Goat Skin||Moroccan Leather||Moroccan Leather|
|Winding||Nickel Silver||Silver-Plated||Sterling Silver||Sterling Silver||Sterling Silver||Silver-Plated|
|Tip plate||Metal Alloy Tip Plate||Fiber-Reinforced Composite||Fiber-Reinforced Composite||Fiber-Reinforced Composite||Fiber-Reinforced Composite||Fiber-Reinforced Composite|
|Hair||Silver Medal Horse Hair||Silver Medal Horse Hair||Gold Medal Stallion Hair||Gold Medal Stallion Hair||Gold Medal Stallion Hair||Silver Medal Horse Hair|
|Warranty||Limited (5-year)||Limited (10-year)||Limited (10-year)||Lifetime||Limited (10-year)||Limited (10-year)|