Protect and track your violin

July 21, 2016 at 03:06 PM · Who is using "TILE" to track their violin?

I have one in my violin case. With it I am able to track in real time where my violin is. Cheap to buy and easy to use. I strongly recommend it to all v.commers.

I have no affiliation with this product.

Cheers Carlo

Replies (27)

July 21, 2016 at 04:31 PM · Why would you need to track your violin?

July 21, 2016 at 04:47 PM · Theft is likely priority #1

July 21, 2016 at 04:50 PM · Could you tell us more about TILE Carlo? I have been wanting to get some kind of small tracking or locating device to hide in my violin case in case someone stole it from me to aid the police in recovering it.

July 21, 2016 at 05:00 PM ·

July 21, 2016 at 05:06 PM · Ella, theft is the main reason to use one, as is a misplaced instrument.

TILE is a very small blue tooth device, about 1 inch square and 3mm thick. You set it up with an app, which takes seconds. It does not need charging, and the battery lasts for a year, when you then replace the unit at a subsidised rate. The old unit is then recycled.

It costs about $20 USD to buy and there are no monthly, or ongoing costs.

I can think of no reasons, bar conspiracy theories, why everyone should not have one in their violin case.

Google "Tile Tracker" to get all the info.

Cheers Carlo

July 21, 2016 at 05:09 PM · Their website is ""

Cheers Carlo

July 21, 2016 at 06:47 PM · The main reason is if you keep misplacing your violin case at home and can't find it. The range is 100 ft. from your smart device, period.

If your case is taken by a thief more than a 100 ft away, you won't be able to track it. You might be able to track by piggybacking on other peoples tiles assuming there are enough users out there that the case will always be within 100 ft from some user. Therefore, not a good tracking device for theft unless everyone starts to use tiles everywhere and there is never a gap of more,than 100ft...but by then thieves will learn to ditch the track able case and run away with your violin alone

July 21, 2016 at 06:53 PM · Thanks Dexter.

I hadn't really read what the device did, nor its' limitations.

July 21, 2016 at 07:46 PM · From what I've read about thieves stealing violins in recent times, it seems they've already learned to quickly ditch the case. How about capturing some Pokemon, and training them to do battle to defend your violin?

July 21, 2016 at 09:56 PM · I might get one of those for my keys. I don't really lose my violin anywhere, but certainly not within my own house. Losing your violin in your house(s) is more of a problem if your house is the Hearst Castle or the Biltmore. Not one of my problems.

What I really need is one for my backside. Some days I can't find my ass with two hands. LOL

July 22, 2016 at 12:05 AM · When I turn on the app I can see 250 piggybacking "Tiles" in my immediate area. In a big city there will be many, many more. If you have lost an item, anytime it goes into the range of another "tile", or a phone with the app, it will automatically log its location.

Cheers Carlo

July 22, 2016 at 12:22 AM · I would install mine on the underside of the chinrest.

July 22, 2016 at 12:42 AM · A 100 foot range would seem to make this item a bit useless. I am surprised that they have sold any at all.

How many people lose their violin inside the house ?

July 22, 2016 at 12:58 AM · Seraphim putting it on your chin rest will ruin your tone. :)

July 22, 2016 at 01:21 AM · Probably best to secure it inside the violin next to the bass bar, where it can't be easily seen. Hide glue is better than super glue since you will be replacing it every year.

July 22, 2016 at 02:14 AM · Brian, 100ft from a tile, or a Bluetooth enabled phone. When are you ever less than 100ft from somebody's smart phone? It works as a network of linked devices that track. I can see my "tile" showing on the map on six different locations around my city yesterday. As it becomes more popular it will work even better.

It is not the complete answer but it is another tool to help return a lost violin. It will fit invisibly and unnoticed when placed into an empty string packet in your case.

Cheers Carlo

July 22, 2016 at 07:35 AM · Or you could just lower the already low possibility of theft by keeping your violin with you when you're out and about. You shouldn't be leaving it in a car, for example.

How on earth does one lose a violin inside a house? House-elves?

July 22, 2016 at 07:51 AM · On the "tile" website they suggest putting trackers on suitcases and bicycles. These are not items likely to be lost in one's house, but your violin can be stolen from your house.

I'm suggesting using "tile" to help track a violin that has been stolen. What is it that some Luddites on this site cannot understand about this technology?

I will say no more on this subject.

Cheers Carlo

July 22, 2016 at 08:06 AM · "If your case is taken by a thief more than a 100 ft away, you won't be able to track it."

Carlo already explained it, the tiles work within the range of any other blueteooth device. This is what the website says:

"Tile's Bluetooth range is up to 100 ft. Bluetooth is most effective at the 30 ft. range, depending on the environment. [...] If any other Tile user's phone/tablet is within Bluetooth range, you will receive an update with the location of your Tile. When this happens, you will see a pin on the map view for your Tile. This essentially makes the range limitless once there are enough Tile users in your area." (

So yes, if my violin gets dragged into the middle of nowhere the Tile won't help me, but in a city with lots of Tile users this might actually work.

July 22, 2016 at 10:01 AM · Okay, so it does work if within 100 feet of a Bluetooth device. That sounds good but you still have to put it somewhere inside the violin...not the case. Thieves are not stupid and as these devices become more common they will soon learn to ditch the case ASAP.

I think it is still a bit too big for putting inside a violin. It should be possible to make something even smaller. A good idea but not there yet !

July 22, 2016 at 12:01 PM · Carlo Iives in New Zealand where there are a lot of tiles, and maybe a lot of thieves. I live in New York where the tile bug has not caught on. I don't know a single person who has one. Many out of towners would be shocked to hear, but burglary is a pretty rare occurrence here. The door to my apartment is usually left unlocked, same goes for many people I know. Similarly, ive never heard of anyone being robbed of their money, jewels, or violin while on the street or the subway. Can't comment about Paris or Rio though.

July 22, 2016 at 12:01 PM · if you feel insecure about losing your violin, hide a tile in your case, and glue an extra one to the INSIDE of violin (hidden - preferably stuck onto maple back rather than spruce top to minimize effect on vibrations). Get extra tiles for dog, dentures and significant other

July 22, 2016 at 06:11 PM · I'll be absolutely floored if a stolen violin is *ever* recovered by means of this device.

July 23, 2016 at 01:24 AM · I couldn't help myself...

Dexter, low crime and unarmed (no guns) police here in NZ, but early adoption of technology. Ironically, I keep my best violins, in their cases, in a fire-proof gunsafe. I won't write on a public site about their value.

I tour internationally with the violin, most recently through the UK, Ireland, and LA. Any extra protection whilst touring can only be a plus.

Cheers Carlo

July 23, 2016 at 02:12 PM · It seems that the Tile's limitations make it useful in only a few places at this point. I'm in the middle of farm country, so not much point in my area. But the thing is relatively cheap, so if the odds of recovering an instrument or valuable case with this device were improved only 3 percent or whatever little amount, the small price may be worth it to a few people. I always like to improve the odds, however marginally.

My violin isn't worth enough to bother, but I can think of some other things I'd like to track, hmmmm ... My yogurt in the refrigerator at work, a cat that likes to disappear, a Christmas present that I've hidden from my significant other and that I myself can no longer find ...

July 25, 2016 at 04:11 PM · To Dexter: Putting the tile inside the violin on the top or back or sides would TREMENDOUSLY affect the vibration and/or tone. About the only two places inside the violin where it might not affect the instrument might be on the neck block or the saddle block (where the end pin plugs in) because those are larger, solid wood pieces which aren't generally considered "vibrating parts" of the violin's sound box. But even then, tiles must be replaced on a yearly basis (when the battery wears out). I wouldn't want to spend several hundred dollars each year having the top of my violin removed just to get at the tile to replace it. Much less the possibility that damage could occur during the top removal process. (Luthiers, I know you are experts, and do this routinely, but just like in medical surgery, any time you go under the knife, there can be complications.) The tile is best kept (hidden) somewhere in the case. BTW, I use tile, but on my keys, not on my many violins/violas.

November 4, 2016 at 01:59 AM · Wrong post.

This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.

Facebook Twitter YouTube Instagram Email is made possible by...

Shar Music
Shar Music

Yamaha Silent Violin
Yamaha Silent Violin

Pirastro Strings
Pirastro Strings

Find a Summer Music Program
Find a Summer Music Program

Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases
Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases Business Directory Business Directory Guide to Online Learning Guide to Online Learning

Dominant Pro Strings

Antonio Strad Violin

Bay Fine Strings Violin Shop

Bobelock Cases


Los Angeles Violin Shop

Nazareth Gevorkian Violins

Metzler Violin Shop

Leatherwood Bespoke Rosin



Johnson String Instrument and Carriage House Violins

Potter Violins

String Masters

Bein & Company

Annapolis Bows & Violins

Laurie's Books

Discover the best of in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews. Interviews Volume 1 Interviews Volume 1, with introduction by Hilary Hahn Interviews Volume 2 Interviews Volume 2, with introduction by Rachel Barton Pine