In this part of our website we try to provide continuously improved information about the instruments you are interested in. This will include something on their construction, types and suitable playing styles, wood and sound as well as maintenance. Some links may lead you to websites with further details, discussion forums or makers. This is a newly established, growing service - reality mixed with opinion. So please understand that it is not possible to include everything from beginning on.
Violins probably have the highest price range of all stringed instruments. There is virtually no limit to the lower and upper price edge. Therefore, carefully thing over what your real needs are by rationally distinguishing between sound and playability versus age and looks.
New violins usually are safe deals in an acceptable price range for players in folk and classic styles. As a rule they are nicely setup for playing and sound better than an old violin of the same or even much higher price. Good affordable violins come from German and Bohemian makers.
Old violins can be nice when they are set up by an educated craftsman to perfect playing condition. Be careful in buying on flea markets or auctions if you do not exactly know what you are doing or can not check for playability. Many instruments offered here need significant setup work which can (as a rule) only be done by experienced violin makers. This may cost you much more than the violin itself. If you are interested in buying such an instrument, ask for the playing condition. If you do not get a definitive answer - donīt buy it unless you are sure that you can make setup work by yourself or willing to pay for it if itīs necessary. A setup useful for fiddling may be unacceptable for classical playing.
Small violins are for children. Donīt spend too much money in them but put your emphasis on the playing condition, especially easy functionalty tuners. Before you buy, ask whether you can trade in such an instrument when buying a bigger one later. This is often accepted. You may also rent such an instrument if you donīt know whether your child will stick with this type of instrument. Often, these instruments come in complete sets with case and bow.
Donīt underestimate the contribution of a good bow or good strings to the sound of your violin. Good bows may be expensive, but worth it and enhance your playing capabilities significantly. A good set of strings may enhance the sound of your violin more than buying a much more expensive violin.
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