June 23, 2012 at 3:56 PMWhen I was shopping for a good student violin at a good price, I was discouraged at the lack of reviews I could find on the "big name" brands. A lot of people were strictly of the opinion to buy from a local shop, but I have issues with my local shop and I don't think their student violins sound very good. I didn't have much to spend and had heard or read about "The Best $500 Violin Anywhere" advertised by Shar.
I decided to go for it and bought it.
Not being a professional player, I didn't trust my own opinion about how good this violin sounded until my own teacher, who is normally prejudice against Chinese violins, commented on how good it sounded. When I told her I only paid $500, she said it sounded "pretty good for just $500.)
She even wanted to borrow it to show another student who was violin shopping.
Per her suggestion, I put Evah Pirazzi strings on it to bring out its full potential and that made it sing even more.
Now that I've thad this violin over a year it has opened up quite a bit and don't plan on trading up for a very very long time, if ever.
Anyone wondering about this model and trying to find information should take my word that it really IS the best $500 violin.
You won't want to give it up - ever!
I fell in love with a violin too and thought it was for ever - but what happens is that as you get better you demand more - and then things that were invisible or unimportant when you bought it become prohibitive with growth. For me it was playing in high positions - my violin just died up there. For others it may be a wolf note, lack of projection or nuance, or something physical like a too wide fingerboard. I do hope you are right - but be prepared that time may even pass your cherished violin by... (although you may keep it - as I have my childhood one which still playes beautifully - for travel or less-violin friendly environments).
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