Paloma Compact

Compact and robust, with a flat wooden body and small pegbox - yet good quality and amazingly full sound. THE travel alternative to bulky and sensitive sitars with gourd resonator.

EU: 789 € (incl. bag)
incl. VAT, plus 48.10 € shipping within Germany / 68.10 € within Europe
Non-EU: 663.03 € (incl. bag)
plus 68.10 € shipping within Europe / overseas on request

The Compact Sitar by Paloma is suitable for beginners as well as for professionals with higher demands. It has a well balanced sound with surprising richness, good quality in materials and workmanship, and an affordable price. Thanks to its compact and robust design, it is ideal for travelling - on tour or for gigs, to lessons or workshops, on vacation or on a weekend trip. The Paloma Compact Sitar is just as suitable for classical Indian raga music as it is for world music, mantras, jazz, pop or rock. A built-in pickup and a jack plug of questionable quality - as found in many cheap "travel sitars" - were deliberately omitted, because the Paloma Compact has a wonderful sound quality without amplification.


- dark stained toon wood
- flat wooden body
- highly polished lacquer surfaces
- 4 melody strings and 3 drone strings with smooth tuning mechanisms
- 13 sympathetic strings with traditional wooden pegs
- inlays of celluloid with engravings in black and red colour
- frets made of nickel silver
- brass tailpiece
- upper bridges and fine tuners (mankas) made of bone
- bridges made of horn or plastic
- top decoration with simple carving
- carrying bag included
- solid mini bridges in the neck for sympathetic strings

General Info

The angle at which the bridge surface (jowari) has been sanded down has great influence on the sound of every sitar. If the curvature of the surface permits strong partial vibrations of the string on the bridge, a buzzing sound rich in overtones is created, which is called an open jowari. Ravi Shankar made this sound popular and Westerners often feel that this is the typical sound of a sitar.

A so-called closed jowari creates less overtones, however, its sound is more clear, concise and singing. Most Indian sitarist prefer this sound today. As a standard feature most of our branded sitars therefore have a somewhat closed jowari.

If played regularly and intensely, the strings dig grooves into the surface of traditional horn or bone bridges in course of time due to abrasion and thus change the relative openness or closedness of the jowaris. If sanded down later in a specific manner, the original sound can be restored or the instrument can be adjusted to a different sound. Since approximately the turn of the millennium many sitars feature modern plastic bridges as standard. Their tone quality is equally good as traditional horn bridges. However, they show considerably less signs of abrasion and therefore don't require sanding down so often.

Manufacturer / Supplier

Paloma is the international brand name for instruments made by Haribhau Vishwanath from Mumbai (formerly Bombay). Haribhau Vishwanath was founded in 1925 as a small repair shop. Today, Paloma is a top international brand for harmoniums, shrutiboxes, santurs and swarmandals. This is due to a distinctive quality standard and successful innovations - such as the harmonium models Compactina and Maestro or the use of digitally controlled CNC milling machines for the precise production of individual components. In addition to instruments produced in-house, Haribhau Vishwanath also supplies us with special instruments from other regional workshops - e.g. the Compact Sitar. Haribhau Vishwanath has been a partner of India Instruments since 2005.


Measure: length 111 cm, width body 29.5 cm, depth body with bridge 12.5 cm, weight ca. 2.5 kg | incl. bag: 3.4 kg
Each instrument is individually hand-crafted and might differ from our description.