On another thread, I was discussing the sound and characteristics professionals are looking for in a violin. A repairer who often writes on this website stated that "sweetness and warmth" are qualities that professionals are looking for. I disagreed. I do not wish to reopen that argument with him, but what do other professionals look for?
I look for the following.
Powerful. A violin must be able to play loudly. However, it needs to be able to play all dynamics from pppp to fffff.
Clear. The sound must not be wooly or fuzzy in any position. You need to be able to play to the top of each string without the sound cracking or becoming choked.
Projecting. The sound needs to carry past the first three rows of seats even at pppp.
Malleable. It can't be a one trick pony. The violinist needs to be able to change the tone colour. I don't look for sweetness and warmth in a violin. I can make any good violin sound sweet and warm myself.
Comfortable. Well set up to play in any position with correct string clearances. The neck needs to suit you as does the size of the instrument.
Even. Even tone across all four strings.
Beautiful. It has to look attractive. I spend a lot of time with my violins. I want to appreciate their looks as well as their sound.
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