Laminated wood is another word for plywood, which is made of multiple thin layers of wood glued together to form a panel. In middle and lower priced instruments, plywood is often used because it saves time over working with solid wood. It is a strong and durable material and tends to be less susceptible to changes in temperature and humidity. When made well, plywood instruments sound quite nice, although a comparable instrument made of solid wood would typically have more resonance, clarity, depth and richness of tone. We use the highest grade of plywood available.
Playing the harp is much easier and more enjoyable when you have an instrument that sounds good and functions well, and this is the driving concept behind the Ravenna models. To provide the best performance, the Ravenna is made with the same high-quality hardware and materials as our more expensive models. So, in order to meet our goal of affordability for the most budget-conscious harpists, we came up with an innovative construction technique that reduces the time we put into building them. We also priced separately all the accessories and options that are useful but not immediately essential, which is why the base price includes just the instrument and a tuning wrench. Each person can add exactly what they want or need to fit their budget.
Not just for beginners, the Ravenna 26 is a great harp for anyone who needs something small and portable. It has a remarkably full and bright sound for its size, and features our characteristic tuning stability and even string tension. The staveback soundbox provides an extra level of playing comfort.
Other accessories can be ordered with the harp or added later, as budget allows. A common addition is a partial or full set of sharping levers, which opens up the range of available playing keys. All the lever holes are pre-drilled, making it possible to add Loveland levers later on. It does require time and detailed work, so we usually recommend starting out with as many sharping levers as your budget can accommodate.
Unless the harp is being played by a small child, you will probably want a drop-down leg or a stand to raise it up to a comfortable height. The drop-down leg slides into playing position with the twist of a knob and adjusts to any height. It is very flexible and portable, but must be retracted into the harp when you're done playing. The removable stand raises it about 12 inches (8" and 5" legs are also available) and holds it steady on four legs. If neither option fits in the budget, you can set it up on a 12" step-stool while playing.
The CE26 or CD26 case makes this harp easy to take in the car or carry on the subway. The CE26 does a good job of giving basic protection to the harp. The CD26 is thicker and has more pockets, including separate, protective compartments to hold the stand base and legs. Both have optional backpack straps.
U.S. Patent #7498495
Ravenna 26 with no sharping levers: $745 Includes T-handle tuning wrench.
Ravenna 26 with C & F levers: $895 Includes T-handle tuning wrench.
Ravenna 26 with full levers: $1195 Includes T-handle tuning wrench.
"I wanted to thank you for making such beautiful harps. I'm a beginner harper and purchased a Ravenna 26. I'm not great (yet) but I love playing the harp and I love my Ravenna! Earlier this year my grandfather was diagnosed with cancer. 3 weeks later he was gone. One of his requests during his last weeks was to hear me play my harp. Grandpa is hard of hearing and thanks to you lovely people, I had a portable instrument that was loud enough for my grandpa to hear. Thank you, thank you for helping me create such sweet, beautiful memories during that difficult time!"
-Becca I. (Boise, ID)
"I have to say that I'm really impressed with your company's thoughtful designs in everything you sell. My Ravenna 26 is my favorite harp of all the harps I owned, especially in terms of sound. Add to that the very handy retractable leg and now my new 12" leg stand and I'm ready for every kind of gig with the harp. It's just perfect. Keep up the good work!"
-Dominic Haerinck (Quebec, Canada)
"Dusty Strings you ROCK! I love my Ravenna 26-string harp so much, I gotta shout it to the mountaintops. This harp is super sturdy which is key for me as a traveling artist. And the tone is loud and warm, easily filling a room acoustically. I just recorded an album with it and it sounds wonderful!!"
-Kate Wild (Boulder, CO)
"My Ravenna 26 is now one year old. I really love the instrument; it sounds great and the tuning is very stable (despite our crazy beach weather). My session pals have really take to it as well and continue to pile tunes on me that they want to hear on the harp. A list too big for me to ever catch up with at the moment!! Thanks to you and all the folks in the shop for a terrific instrument."
-Tom Neuman (Grover Beach, CA)
"I bought the new Ravenna 26 model with F and C sharpening levers and I love everything about it. For a beginner like me it is a perfect harp; affordable and good sized. Everyone that I play for is amazed at the sound that comes from this instrument. It has a much fuller sound than they were expecting and the volume is much more prominent as well. I can't wait to get a 36 string as I am totally hooked on the harp! Who knew that a guy playing the harp is such a lady killer?"
-Jonathan Hannah (Prescott, Arizona)
"As an amateur harpist, I'm glad to say I've made the perfect choice in purchasing the Dusty Strings Ravenna 26 with C and F sharping levers. The harp is of a good size and quality, budget-friendly and produces a full and resonant sound that I still marvel at each time I play. What I really appreciate: How Aaron from Dusty Strings adequately advised on the type of harp that was most suitable for me (saves me a lot of head-scratching because I'm teaching myself) Not only that, he also patiently explained the shipping mechanics over several emails because it was a long-distance sale. When the harp arrived, it was in a fantastic condition. The good service from Dusty Strings is well-known, but it was still a pleasant surprise to be on the receiving end. Thanks for giving me a great instrument, Dusty Strings!"
-Jaclyn Lim (Singapore)
"Being primarily a pedal harpist, depth of tone in a harp has always been of utmost importance to me. I have found the new Ravenna to have the feel of a pedal harp, but most importantly, the warmth and the richness of tone needed for therapeutic music at the bedside. I encourage ANY therapeutic musician to use the Ravenna harp. There is no sacrifice of sound in using this harp [nor need I] change the way I pull a string. I find the Ravenna's sound to be lush and vibrant even as it stands next to my pedal harp. And it's so much easier to move! I love using the leg that extends. NO more neck or shoulder ache from the strap! The other day I needed to play for a patient in their nursing home room. It was filled with medical equipment and had no chair [in which] to sit. I extended the leg and proceeded, happy that I could fit in the crowded room and still serve the patient."
-Mona Peck (Peekskill, NY)