best violin one can get for 700 or less
hello everyone, i'm in need of some good recommendation for what is the best bang for the buck i can get for under 700, new and used.
i been on and off with a very cheap violin for a number of years now, with combination of school, job, grad school, now i finally have some free time to dedicate myself. however my current violin just lacks projection, and lacking that silvery tone i hear on my tutor's violin.
simply put, besides reverb.com, or god forbid ebay, is there anywhere i can go besides going to violin shop and get taken advantage of. or is going to violin shops and play what they get me my best bet.
now i know 700 isn't alot for a violin, but unfortunately that is what i can afford right now while paying off that student loan.
this isn't the last violin i'll be getting, but it will be the only violin i'll be getting for a good number of years.
any advice would be greatly appreciated.
If that's all you can spend, I would try craigs list until you find something you like, new violins for $700 aren't going to be very good IMHO Are you in USA??
NS Design or Yamaha Electric :)
Check our Kennedy violins. Look on-line then I suggest calling them. I found them to be both very helpful and reputable.
1) Not all stores will take advantage of you. True, they might charge more than craigslist or eBay, but that's because they offer more service (like > 1 instrument to try, hopefully setup well with new strings, etc.)
Try to find a shop you like and trust, especially one with a full-value trade-in policy. That means you can have your $700 violin today, but next year you can trade it in and apply the $700 to your next instrument.
The trade in policy is great, but also for 700$ , rather than buying new, I would also be looking at used instruments with good resale value.
You'd be better off buying a Strad, Made in Germany off ebay for $100 and paying $300 to get it set up right.
You could try an auction but you would need to bring someone very knowledgeable to you to vet your selection(s), or buy privately from a musician.
Auction is much more risky than Craigs list where you can actually play the violin before purchasing, you're more likely to fall into a repair nightmare with an auction violin that with Craigs list IMHO
I've been pleasantly surprised by the Carlo Lamberti Sonata (SHAR in-house brand) violin that I impulse bought when it showed up on their clearance page a few months back. They retail new for $550. As has been mentioned above, a shop like SHAR will allow you to trade in an instrument as you want to move up. Many shops have this policy.
hi Lyndon, yes i'm located in nyc, i been to one shop so far, and tried 3 violins there, all 3 of them offered better playability when i found the notes for couple bach and especially mozart concerto 5 came off alot cleaner and sharper than my current violin, out of 3 of these 1 particularly stood out, however i felt he def marked some of these up when the store owner set the price of all 3 at exactly 650.
Have you considered the Jay Haide model 101? I think that one retails for $700 and I've heard is a decent workshop instrument for students. Plus they are sold at many dealers, and certainly sold in NYC.
"out of 3 of these 1 particularly stood out"
What part of "bring someone with you to vet your selection" did you not understand Lyndon? I was not saying to go to ebay, I said an auction - like Tarisio - where you can in fact go and trial your potential purchase as many times as you like during that auction period. Doesn't matter it if is the fancy auction or the T2 auction, you can make an appointment to trial.
I second the Eastman brand -- we've had a lot of good luck with them for my kids. However, I think their tiny violins (1/10, 1/8, 1/4) are far superior to their 1/2 and full sizes. Not sure why.
hi pamela, david segal's shop is actually on the list of shops i contacted, and they have nothing in the sub $1k price range, so unless i pony up another 800 bucks up to 1500, david segal is out of my price range.
As far as the Eastmans are concerned, whether they're good or bad sound wise is subjective. To be fair, my friend tried all their violins at NAMM and didn't like most of them, but did find some of the lower end models to be better than the higher end models... But what is definitely true is that the VL305 violins do have decent resale value if you already buy them used.
thanks denis! yeah that video was pretty horrid and was very turn off by it.
For what is worth, I'm playing a Yamaha V5, that is worth around €400, and I'm using a €300-400 bow.
Interesting to see Eastman recommended - I nearly clicked on an Eastman Master Viola the other day.
Re:Eastmans. I just picked up a 2003 Andreas Eastman 405 violin from Goodwill for $272, but it was never set up properly and was missing a bridge. It was obvious that it had never been played in properly. I’ve set it up with geared perfection pegs, and matched boxwood fittings to it (sounded better than ebony and rosewood.) I’ve tried several bridges and fit the one that matched the best with a good soundpost positon. That amount of work would have brought me close to $700.
I think it will be a nice bright modern instrument in a few years.
The low-cost Lamberti / Haide / Eastman lines are all a good value. And there would be lots of used ones available from former violin students who didn't stick with it.
I agree on having a luthier set it up. The only reason that I have not is because I’m learning how to fit pegs, tune bridges and adjust soundposts (this is about the 20th instrument I’ve worked on) as an amateur enthusiast. I would not venture far beyond that sort of set-up, especially with my good instruments. This is to be my outdoor, extreme midwest cold weather, and pit instrument.
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