Xueping Hu Workshop/Snow Violin SV250

Edited: July 8, 2019, 7:41 PM · My violin is still in the shop having the second fingerboard dressing in a month, as mentioned in another post.

They gave me a loaner, I still have it, and didn't expect much from it. The bridge looks like it's actually glued to the violin (surely not?!?), strings are tarnished - especially the E, tailpiece seems loose, and if there isn't an actual crack in the wood on the top of the violin there is a seriously deep score in the wood. It's a Snow SV250 from the Xueping Hu Workshop, built in 2013. It has stayed almost perfectly in tune for 5 days now.

Anyone know anything about the Snow SV250? I can't find out anything on the internet. SV200, yes, but not 250. Is it a student violin? Intermediate?

I am not very experienced, but I did not assume that something with all that going on would sound very good. I had little hope of that, just was thankful to have something with which to practice for the estimated week I would be without mine. I had just hoped it would stay in tune - unlike the last loaner I had.

On the contrary, it has a sweet voice, and resonates nicely - indeed it resonates quite a bit better than my own violin. I swear even the harmonics sound better than mine (but mine DOES have fingerboard scoop problems, so that's not a fair comparison, and I'm only a beginner).

One wonders what it would actually sound like with good strings and the other problems addressed. The neck also appears to be just to be a tiny amount smaller - at least I assume so as it's easier to use my 4th, on all strings, but certainly easier on the G string.

If anyone has any information on this model or brand it would be appreciated.

Replies (6)

July 9, 2019, 11:37 AM · I tracked this down, while the SV250 is no longer made, it was a bit of a step-up from my own intermediate violin. Apparently the Chinese workshop that makes these violins have a good reputation, and I will try out the 300 at a good time. If I like the sound as much as I do the sound from that beat-up loaner I just may trade mine in, time will tell. Nice to have that 100% trade-in option!
July 9, 2019, 12:09 PM · Please don't buy a violin with a glued-down bridge. That's firewood.
July 9, 2019, 12:32 PM · Nope, that isn't how Snow violins come - they are actually pretty good quality. I was just struck with how good the sound was from a very beat up and thouroughly trashed loaner (it had spent years as a school rental). If it sounded so good in that condition how would one sound with proper care?

I've read a good number of good reviews on violins from that workshop, and nothing bad. I'm curious. I would bring my teacher along whenever I decide to upgrade to make certain it IS an upgrade...

July 10, 2019, 12:36 AM · It probably wouldn't sound any better if it were well cared for. What you are hearing is something that only comes from time and playing. Purchase a decent instrument that is properly set-up and play it.
July 10, 2019, 9:00 PM · Hi Catherine,

We have two Snow JHS (one of very high grades), and in fact one of them was made in 2013 according to the label. and the other is approximately 10 years older.

The tone characters of them are very different, the 2013 is very warm and full, while the earlier is brilliant and powerful, but still full. Apparently, each violin is different, even of the same brand and grade. The 2013 Snow is the only one my son, a talented young violinist, is playing.

I would not make any comment as violin tone is subjective and each violin player may have different preference. Just for your reference, I (or we) have more than a couple of violins; and at least some of them appear to be quite nice, based on provenance, wood and construction, and tonal quality. Therefore, those instruments are much more valuable than the Snows we have. Moreover, my son and myself are not completely novices... Nonetheless, the 2013 Snow is the only one he prefers and has been playing for the last 5 years since we bought it.

Edited: July 11, 2019, 6:59 AM · Thank you for your comments! That loaner is back at the shop, but it did seem to have a full rich sound I didn't expect from a student level violin (mine is one level up from that). My violin shop has several pro and master level violins from the same workshop, they sound wonderful - at least to my ear. The prices are reasonable, not cheap but not $10k either. I'm not ready for an upgrade just yet - but am keeping my eye on these. My preferences may change by then but exploration is a good thing.

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