There have been lots of discussions concerning Chinese violins. Some are of good quality but most do not meet expectations; however there are some good values to be found. One example is the Liu Xi violin, I have come across two and purchased one for myself. The build quality in general is good, the scrolls well cut, the size and fittings have been close to the dimensions outlined by Stobel and found in the MENC (now NafME.org) specifications. By the way , just an aside but when did MENC stop publishing their specs? If you don't have some of their old material you'll be hard pressed to find any on their website.
Back to the violin: The finish is warm and glowing without being cheaply glossy. I found the varnish still slightly soft when new and care must be taken in handling. The instruments will quickly improve sonically if proper care and set-up is undertaken. I posted a sound clip of the violin when new and now again after three months. The sound has definately matured; gone is the sharp tonal edginess many of these imports are known for and was so immediatly distracting when new. The dominants helped and if I were to restring I would go with something even more sonorous like Pirastro Obligatos. If I didn't already have a darker sounding Guarneri patterned violin, I may have also left the Despiau Superior bridge a shave heavier. So for your listening ear here is a short sound sample with a video of the violin:
This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.
Violinist.com is made possible by...
Discover the best of Violinist.com in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews.