Begginer significant budget 2-3 K

March 20, 2020, 5:03 PM · Im 38 and want to learn the violin, just for me I know its not easy. My budget is decent, say 3k * violin alone, (1k for case and bow also )to get started, I know I can spend alot less but if I can buy one instrument to grow with thats more ideal then upgrading. As long as its not advanced in the sense its harder to play? More why pick up bad habits on a lesser instrument if I can afford not to? Narrowed it down to these, interested in classical playing for my own enjoyment, please advise

1) mezzoforte forte design $2500- I like carbon as I travel and have kids, just appears durable and less tuning. Like the sound very much, a bit more bright but for learning perhaps unwise? Beautiful and perhaps a one stop purchase and all the violin ill need for awhile?

2) Holstein cannone $1400- love the fuller, lower, more mellow sound? Scott cao cannone $1100, it appears I like the style canone. Thoughts are wood is better to learn on? Prob all I need, better feel or easier to play then carbon?

3) Mezzo evo $1100 -  not as good as the design line, but cheaper and can travel, isnt as powerful but perhaps thats good while learning? Also its sandwich carbon and not fully layered- regardless my thought was I could start here and have money left over for the cannone, or vice versa. Albeit if I started with the cannone id prob still want to come back for the mezzo design....just sounds fuller.

Thoughts? Not trying to waste money but 2-3 k is fine for me if its not silly and theres value to be had starting with a more complete violin, or buying a lower end carbon and nice wood or a lower end wood and the design line.

Thanks!

Replies (50)

March 20, 2020, 5:14 PM · Violins don’t come in models unless they are out of a factory or workshop in China or Germany. Right now you would not even have the ability to asses whether or not a violin is good for you. But it’s your money, you are free to spend it as you wish. I would not recommend anything other than wood.
March 20, 2020, 5:30 PM · Okay wood only, whats your advice on what I buy or spend then? Surely theres some starting point? Models are replicas of old great style violins, but are you saying I go find a luthier that doesnt brand their violins? Confused as theres plenty of manufacturers out there, just what does one spend to get started? $100 amazon violin? $1000 in a violin shop? Thanks!
March 20, 2020, 5:36 PM · Take some time and have someone play instruments to you.

For 2-3k you can get a performance worthy fiddle. I’d stay clear of carbon violins as they are more of a utility than wht you want. Unless you intend to perform in adverse conditions (rain, freezing cold, humid heat etc...) where a plastic fiddle can give you an advantage - go for a real thing.

If you have a chance to visit fiddlerman store - go for it. They seem like good, knowledgable people with many instruments to listen to.

For 1k, go with a carbon fiber bow. But try anything from 500 to 1000 and go for feel and sound, forget about the price.

March 20, 2020, 5:36 PM · In that price range you can get a nice-sounding Chinese violin, CF bow, and a Embassy Courier case. 100+ year old workshop violins from Germany can be found at reasonable prices too and some of them sound and play really nice.
March 20, 2020, 5:41 PM · Tony, thank you for the advice. I have looked at fiddlerman and listened to all theor reviews and narrowed it down. I will be in extreme environments, my job takes me from Africa to denmark and all over. I will start with wood though. I am in Germany actually, but everything is locked down so I cant visit shops. Since I cant play yet I thought the fiddlerman reviews and videos were as good as it gets for me
March 20, 2020, 5:46 PM · Paul, I live in Germany actually lol that being said is older better? I see the heritage but I am looking for a good place to start, you mentioned chinese...ming violins? I liked the 907...regardless I just thought before I show up with a cheapo amazon violin to my firat lesson why not take it seirious and spend wtv gets me started off on the right foot....the ones I mentioned were what caught my ear while listening to violins below 3k online. Germans I have encountered were not helpful in the stores....appeared their reaction was buy anything and didnt want to play for me unless I wanted to spend 10k plus...which is fine Im just where Im at starting.
March 20, 2020, 5:49 PM · My apologies if this forum is all elite players, I understand 3k is nothing for a violin, but I was just trying to buy a decent starter, apologies for the eye rolls I may have caused.
March 20, 2020, 5:51 PM · Personally I like instruments with a story. Older is better in that respect, but - older is in many ways crappier. Todays instruments outperform many old ones.

That being said, I have a (probbably) old german copy in da salo / magini style and is just colossal. The best instrument I ever played.

March 20, 2020, 6:04 PM · Tony,
You appear to be helpful so thank you. I believe in a few years Ill want an instrument with history and one that costs significantly more, when I know what Im looking for.
For now as you stated many new ones perform well, my thoughts were buy something generic but of enough quality I can learn without the instrument holding technique back, would I be better served buying just a quality bow and upgrading violins as I learn what I like? Basically $300 fiddlerman just as good as a 2500 ming 907 for a starting point?
I saw a German antique set reconditioned for $800 on that site, demo videos, I couldn't say it was better or worse then the newer models.
Edited: March 20, 2020, 6:18 PM · Have someone at a local shop play violins for you, then pick one based on sound. If you can play, try out different ones.

Edit: Good strings will help a lot with playability, a nice bow also helps you not develop bad habits.

Edited: March 20, 2020, 6:23 PM · Personally - I think a violinist needs as good as fiddle as he can get his hands on. You need to be sure the instrument is better than you. That means you can learn how o make it work harder and better.
A bad instrument will leave you frustrated, because nothing you can do will make it sound better. There needs to be room for improvement on that instrument. It needs to be as good as you can afford.

That being sad... a good violinist will make a bad instrument sound better, but a bad violinist will make a great instrument suck.

March 20, 2020, 6:39 PM · Thank you Tony, Paul, and Xuanyuan. I will spend the most I can and look at wood, appreciate it.
March 20, 2020, 6:52 PM · Remember to take your time, a bad violin is like a bad marriage!
March 20, 2020, 7:15 PM · My advice is to obtain the very best rental that you can, and also the very best teacher that you can. The top-quality rentals are typically outfits worth about $1,200. Potters Violins does online rentals if there are no shops offering higher-quality rentals near me.

After six months to a year of lessons and diligent practice, you will have well enough developed tastes and a sufficiently adequate technique to go shopping for a student-grade instrument within your budget. Your budget of up to $3,000 for the violin and up to $1,000 for the bow will be fine. If you can go up to $4,500 for the violin it will expand your options. About $250 will get you an excellent case.

At those price points, you will be looking at mostly Chinese workshop violins designed for students, and Brazilian workshop bows (or carbon-fiber bows). However, all the violins and bows will be unique. You cannot shop by "brand"; even within a given workshop's particular "model", there will be significant differences between each example of that model. Don't believe any of the marketing or descriptions that you see on the websites. You will need to go to a violin shop (NOT a general music shop like Music & Arts) with a large inventory of instruments to try, and try a bunch of different ones. You may actually need to go to multiple shops in order to find good value for the money. When you get to that point, you'll either invite your teacher to come shopping with you (and pay them for their time), or you'll take your favorites out on trial and bring them to your teacher to try and approve.


Edited: March 20, 2020, 8:55 PM · Everything Lydia said. Visit some shops (violin/string shops, not band/everything shops) and start asking questions snd asking to hear rental instruments. You will probably get some good teacher recommendations and get a sense of who carries instruments you like. Then rent at a shop that you've got a good feel for and will allow you to carry most of your rental fees forward into an eventual purchase, once you've got your feet under you, and have an idea what sound and feel *you* personally love playing. If you really really really want to buy right now, find a shop (or a reputable online company such as SHAR) that will give you good trade-in value; get a "decent" instrument to start (and a good shop will be able to help you get something that's not a rank "VSO", but save your cash and trade in for an instrument you really love in a year or two when, again, you've got your feet under you and a good idea of what you're looking for. Having a teacher or advanced friend along to help play and listen will be invaluable at that point.

(It's not that you can't get a decent instrument now with the cash you have, just that you'll be shelling it out for a run-of-the-mill instrument that may or may not be what you come to love. Plus a "brand" does not equal sound--I've played instrument exact same maker, year, price with COMPLETELY different qualities.)

(And don't even get us started on the bow ;) )

Good luck!!

Edited: March 20, 2020, 9:08 PM · Rereading--it looks like you may have already gone to a shop where you could try all these. I still think you can do better long-term with a rental or trade-in but if you've heard the instruments and like the sound I would just say go what sounds and feels best **but** check with your teacher first!!! to make sure there are no major weaknesses you're missing. You should be able to take them out on trial before you purchase, but realize you are still at a bit of disadvantage just because you are buying before you can really play the instrument. (And I would still compare around and try also to take a trial or two home from an actual string shop to compare with your teacher--you may be amazed how much more sound you get from *some* non-branded instruments.)
But if there's one of the instruments you mentioned that you love the sound, and it feels good, and your teacher does not find any issues, well, go for it, you may love it!
Edited: March 20, 2020, 10:50 PM · Don't buy before hearing the individual violin you're getting. If you're basing your opinion of the sounds on online video reviews of the brands, it's almost meaningless because two violins of the same brand and model can sound very different. No two violins are the same because no two pieces of wood are the same.
March 21, 2020, 2:19 AM · Hi, I've understood that you've based in Germany right now? So I guess that all luthiers are shut right now here in Germany.
Coming back to the idea of rental, I've one rented a Viola da gamba from Geige 24 (they've got a rental department called Verleih). It was a nice instrument and fine service. If you decide to keep the Instrument, 6-24 monthly loans are accepted on the sale price, depending how expensive it is.
Also their contact service is really helpful.
I think this is good place to start without being able to go around to luthiers. I really understand that you want to seize the situation to get started.
You can send me a PM if you need more information. Where are you placed in Germany?
March 21, 2020, 3:07 AM · I recommend Jacob Saunders just out side of Vienna, in Austria, he's under lockdown too, google Jacob Saunders violin, call him up and ask him if he is able to ship a violin to Germany under the lockdown, if he can, I would suggest you ask him to put together a good antique German violin and bow and case for 3-4000EU, I guarantee he wouldn't sell you short, and it would beat the hell out of that Chinese crap from the USA that probably is going to take ages to get shipped across the ocean with an embargo on flights from the uSA. His number is 43-2243-20270
March 21, 2020, 3:19 AM · Thank you everyone, tremendous help, I will reply to each of you, since you took the time to help. I will clarify a few small details also,rentals are a non option for me and so are demos. I am military in Germany and no one will send from the states to demo or rent. Since I dont exist in the German credit arena they wont loan to me either and I have to buy out right. Why I looked at fiddlermam to trade up later, basically wtv I get will be upgraded later or honestly just a lesson learned and gifted to someone when I buy what I have learned is for me. Because of corona I cant meet my teacher or teachers yet ( selection of two ) and may be stuck for 3 months waiting to get started. I wanted to have a violin waiting for that day, tinker with online instructional videos untill I can take reg classes when the lock down lifts
Note: this violin is no longer the be all end all, just my starting point. Shelve it or trade it when I go shopping in a year with a bigger budget and some skills. Why I thought carbon mezzoforte design for $2500 or $1200 mezzo evo and just have a travel one ready to go, then spend 4-8k on a wood one later in a year or so. Or a $1400 wood or $2500 ming 907 as a jump off platform from fiddler man. However Ive listened and rethought it all now-thanks!
March 21, 2020, 3:42 AM · Also one of my potential teachers appears quite accomplished:
Her training began at the age of six, when she studied under Yampolski at a special musical school in Kiev. She moved to a St. Petersburg conservatory at age 14, where her tutelage was overseen by some impressive figures, including Boris Gutnikov, a virtuoso who had achieved world renown as a violinist by the time he was 30. Her teachers had also studied at the knee of Leopold Auer, a famous violin professor who left Russia for New York one year before the Bolshevik Revolution in 1917.
March 21, 2020, 3:45 AM · Lyndon Taylor, I will make that call, thank you for the advice. I just dont want to buy junk. If 4k is the price of admission then so be it. If it is 1k and then move up to 3k, 6k, and so forth. Im good with that. I was trying to spend 2500 or so to start and then after having some skill go spend 5k or so, but I can start higher
March 21, 2020, 3:55 AM · Lydea, Thank you for the detailed response, really cleared it up for me. Rentals dont appear to be an option for me but perhaps since my wife is German I can have her use her credit line to apply, corona has me held in a stopping patter as all of europe is locked down.. I just wanted to start with something Id keep for a year or travel with on all my frequent buisness trips to ...well litterally everywhere but mostly europe,. Thats why I toyed with a 2500 carbon but I understand that makes everyone cringe so scratch it from the list, I was trying to be sensible and start with my future back up violin in my mind. Then go shopping for something significant with whoever my teacher is, I also didnt want to show up to an accomplished instructor with a low end violin. I know she loves to teach and teaches children also so she has seen it all, but I am an adult and wanted to show her respect and dedication by having a quality instrument on day one....if that makes sense? Everyone has a budget so shop within your means but I prefer the buy nice or buy twice mentality
March 21, 2020, 3:57 AM · Anne S! Very interested, I am an hour outside of Frankfurt but Im willing to drive all over once the ban is lifted.
Edited: March 21, 2020, 6:56 AM · Ben, you came on all guns blazing, lol, because you assumed you were mixing with an elite. Then you back-peddled quite a lot.
Lyndon's advice is best (nothing wrong with Tony's), except that it's really not so clear-cut what your budget is or should be. Don't forget, someone who has spent 20 000 on a violin isn't going to admit that you can spend less - they'd look foolish. That's cognitive dissonance, and there's as much psychology as elitism (of the wrong kind) on this forum. (see also Dunning Krueger. I'd also contend violins suffer from status symbol price inflation in America).

I think you need to think also about what's practical for you. You need to think about travelling with the military to Africa and whether you want to do that with a good violin (I'll assume insurance issues are trivial). Are you combat or admin? Will your violin travel in the hold of a Hercules or be hand luggage in a passenger jet?
Buying a Col Legno Standard (150Eu carbon bow) and a Gewa violin for 1000Eu or less isn't going to hold any beginner back, not for years, during which time you can save money, as you imply. Anyone who tells you otherwise is full of crap.
I'd go with Fiddlershop if the Coronavirus weren't making things difficult. In theory, you could and should go with someone in Germany, but I've met some of that bloody-mindedness you talk of there. Which brings me back to Lyndon's advice.

People talk of matching an individual bow to an individual violin, but you need to realise that it's personal taste too, and a beginner won't have a personal taste that doesn't change greatly, the more experienced they get.

Think of vcom arguments translated into car terms: -
"I want to learn to drive. What car should I get?"
"You'll need at least a Maserati, otherwise you'll never be able to manage more than 100MPH around the tighter curves of the Hockenheimring"
"You don't need a Maserati, a Porsche is just as good, my spouse is buying me one for my birthday"
"No, driving a Maserati is nicer than driving a Porsche, and it's always easier to learn to drive if you drive a nicer car"
etc

March 21, 2020, 8:51 AM · Thanks Gordon, yeah I back pedaled lol in answer to your questuons in how I travel its both actually, sometimes a c130 and alot of commercial travel and throw it in the overhead. Commercial when in Europe and normally military birds when in Africa. I also am not combat, Im a strategist and electronic technician.
Regardless, I think Im going to wait the corona out and go shop around in Germany, if that doesnt work I think I may just split the difference and buy a wood and a carbon from fiddlerman and upgrade and trade them both back in when I know what I want. That or ebay them and go the high end antiques route....I may suck after years of trying anyway lol Thanks
March 21, 2020, 11:53 PM · I mentioned 3-4000K because that is what you mentioned for your budget and because that would get you a pretty good antique violin at Jacob's, although I'm sure he has cheaper options.
Edited: March 22, 2020, 2:17 AM · You sound as though you may be having second thoughts already, Ben.
I could have added - there's no harm in having a second-best violin if you want to start cheap and then upgrade.
It will be a backup if your first needs repairs, and if you get sent to the jungle, you may not want to take your best violin.
This might be a good gamble (given the Corona constraints): -
https://www.amazon.de/Gewa-Violingarnitur-Set-Concerto-Violine/dp/B006N8W9SO/ref=sr_1_2?__mk_de_DE=%C3%85M%C3%85%C5%BD%C3%95%C3%91&dchild=1&keywords=violingarnitur&qid=1584861049&sr=8-2&swrs=E01C8218975F3737FEA814471F6C58B1
Edited: March 22, 2020, 3:18 AM · I have several violins including a Fiddlerman, a midrange Chinese violin and an old German Mittenwald. Of the 3, the German is the worst in sound quality and playability even after work from a master luthier. The Chinese is quite good and the Fiddlerman is the best. I also have one of their Holstein bows and really like it.

I’ve seriously considered a carbon fiber violin also. I don’t personally care for the evo, it sounds a bit thin to me, but the design line is fantastic. I just can’t justify the price when I already have several nice violins. But they are very playable and have a great sound; absolutely the equal of a wood violin in the same price point, no matter what the wood purists might say :).

If you want a nice new European violin, I’d suggest checking out the Klaus Heffler Primavera or Passione line. They’re German made and sound great and are well within your budget.

But my advice is to stay away from old violins for your first instrument ; you just can’t be sure what kind of problems you’ll be buying. I do love old violins and have 2, but I wouldn’t suggest depending on one as my first and only violin.

Whereas if you buy a new violin from a reputable shop you’ll be more likely to get one that’s playable and sounds the way you expect, especially when buying online. Plus a reputable shop will stand by their instruments and allow returns for 30:or 45 days.

Also Fiddlerman will make a video of the exact violin you’ll get and post it for you if you call or email them and ask. They’re the only shop I know of that does that.

For your price point in bows, I’d suggest either a good carbon fiber like an Arcus p3 or m3, or maybe an entry level pernambuco. Jon Paul also has a hybrid bow, the Fusion, that’s fairly cheap and plays very nice. I have one and use it every week, it’s a great second bow at $200 or so.

Finally, I’d say that 3k is plenty of budget for a violin outfit that will last for years of learning. In fact it’s on the high side if anything. 1k to 1500 would get you a very very nice setup; the idea that you must spend $3000 or more for a decent violin is definitely not true anymore, largely due to Chinese makers like Scott Cao and GCV and Ming Jiang Zhu.

The main thing is to get something good and have fun playing!! Good luck!

Edited: March 22, 2020, 6:53 AM · what a load of BS, a hundred year old violin in good condition is actually more stable and less likely to need repairs than a new violin, where the wood is still not entirely dry.
March 22, 2020, 8:15 AM · Firstly, it is great you'd like to learn the violin! Great instrument, I highly recommend it (as most of us will).

It is worth bearing in mind, although you have a good budget, you don't need to spend all of it to get a decent violin. I would seriously consider a rental of a decent student outfit, partly to see if you will really stick at learning the instruments, secondly to build up skill and a thought of the sound you might like out a violin in the future.

Carbon fibre instruments are nice, but for me, they don't offer the same sort of character a nice wood violin can offer.

Everyone offers some good advice, lots to think about.

March 22, 2020, 8:38 AM · God damn it, why don't some idiots bother to read the thread, the OP is in Germany under lockdown, no violin shops are open, no rentals are available.
March 22, 2020, 9:38 AM · I read the thread, well aware Germany is under lockdown. I didn't see the need to add in that OP should wait until the lockdown is over. Thought it was obvious.
March 22, 2020, 9:55 AM · he doesn't want to wait
Edited: March 22, 2020, 12:27 PM · I'll bet that under the circumstances, Lyndon's friend, knowing Lyndon had recommended him in a public forum, would probably outdo himself to get you a really nice violin for your price point and he'd probably make sure it was in good adjustment. With a connection like that, you can almost buy your instrument sight-unseen.

I bought my MJZ viola sight-unseen, because an excellent pro violinist who also plays viola said he was going shopping for student violins and would be seeing some good violas in my price range. He offered to bring a few home but then I'd have to drive the ones I didn't want back to the dealer (a 7-hour drive). So I asked him to just pick the one he would buy and I'd pay for it. He needed some convincing, but finally he understood I was serious. And it's a great sounding viola, I've never regretted this decision. This same pro told me a couple of months ago that he played a gig with a couple of salaried career orchestral violists and my viola sounds better than theirs. It's not the most responsive instrument but I might be able to solve that partially with different strings (so far obligatos are better than dominants).

Edited: March 22, 2020, 1:04 PM · I am not all that convinced that rental agencies would agree to taking their instrument on deployment, remember the OP is active military. I didn't think the carbon fiber instrument was that bad of an idea, I would have considered that myself but I can't speak from experience, and wonder if anyone who disrecommended it actually did either, and if so, didn't articulate much of their own experience.
March 22, 2020, 1:28 PM · I've only tried Luis and Clark instruments (briefly.) I've also heard a L&C cello played for a contemporary concerto (from the orchestra.) Some people love them. To me they sound a bit brassy, for lack of a better word (maybe less overtones?) and lack complexity but they're pretty powerful and easy to play. I wouldn't use one for classical rep in performance, but I too think a synthetic instrument would be fine for the OP, given his use. Of course L&C are pretty pricey and I've not tried less expensive brands, but I think what matters most for a beginner is the instrument setup. No matter the price range, you want to purchase from a specialty string shop or dealer with professional luthiers doing the setup.
March 22, 2020, 1:36 PM · "I think what matters most for a beginner is the instrument setup."

Indeed!

March 22, 2020, 2:15 PM · Totally agree that the setup is what matters most, IF the violin is structurally sound.

But Lydon I cant agree that a hundred year old violin will always be better. It’s true the wood will be dry but so will a new one if it’s made with properly dried wood. It MAY be better or it may have a host of hidden problems that the seller missed. Or it may not last long under the kind of travel the OP said he does.

And I don’t know of anyone who will give a lifetime warranty on an old violin whereas many new ones do have lifetime structural warranties.

I love old violins, I’m just suggesting they are not good for someone’s first and only violin, especially if they’ll be traveling with it extensively as the OP said. Also, I understand that’s how you make a living, by fixing up old violins and reselling them, but I think you should declare that so the OP knows you have a natural bias. My intent is just to give the best advice possible based on my own experiences. :)

March 22, 2020, 5:24 PM · you're not a violin expert, are you??
Edited: March 22, 2020, 7:02 PM · I'm a beginner, so take what I say with a grain of salt. But here goes: 1) I own a Fiddlerman Master and love it. I also had an Artist, and the sound was excellent, but I needed a 7/8. From what I have read, import duties may as much as double the cost of violin, so getting a violin from the U.S. when you are in Germany may increase the cost substantially.
2) You say you'll be travelling a lot, so the violin will likely need to endure a certain amount of abuse. You should be able to carry your violin on the airplane with you, but violins don't take well to great changes in humidity. I'd argue that you can find a violin outfit (violin, bow, case, maybe one or more extras like rosin, shoulder rest, cleaning cloth, tuner) for $600-1000 that has a good setup. The setup contributes substantially to whether the violin is easy or difficult to play (nut height, bridge height, string height, bridge cut, etc.), and will affect your learning curve. I know professional violinists travel the world over with far more expensive violins, but if it were me, I'd want to see how the violin did after a year or more of travelling; and I'd like to know I'd be sticking with it, before I spent $3000 on an outfit.
3) If you're based in Germany, you might see how much it would cost to rent a well setup violin locally, and what your liability would be should it get damaged or lost as you travel. This way, you may have the option of trying different violins and bows, and basic checkups and servicing may be included in the rental fee. Thus you'd learn what is is you feel most comfortable with. For example, I now have two 7/8 violins. I bought a second, less expensive violin. Though I haven't measured either violin, I can tell you the second one is a little shorter (notes are closer together) and the neck is thinner than my Fiddlerman. So there are subtle differences in the feel of the two violins. After you've played awhile, you would better be able to detect not only the difference in tone, but differences in the feel in your hand.

I wish you luck in finding something that works for you.

March 22, 2020, 8:35 PM · Ben, are you traveling constantly, so you're dragging the violin onto a place once a week to some place in the world, and are rarely home? Or are you traveling frequently -- away from home for a few days at a time, but spend more than 50% of your time at home? When you are out away from home, are you generally staying someplace air-conditioned/heated and climate-controlled, or are you out in the field in a tent?

If you're traveling constantly and are out in the field, I would indeed recommend a carbon-fiber violin and bow for travel. Getting a decent CF violin might take your whole budget, but if you can afford it, I'd split your budget between a cheap CF violin (or even a cheap electric), and a slightly better traditional violin for home use.

If you're not out on the field but are worried about the circumstances under which you'd be traveling with the violin, I'd buy a cheap violin -- say $500 -- plus a carbon-fiber bow, and a very sturdy travel case (though note that it's never safe to put a violin in the cargo hold). Then I'd get a nicer violin for home use.

Keep in mind that if you spend $2,500 now, unless you get it from someplace that allows 100% value trade-ins, you will probably not be able to recoup that expense, so if you eventually want an $8k violin that will be $8k that doesn't count $2,500 from the sale of the other violin.

One of the key reasons to wait is that if you rent first and then spend some time shopping, whatever you buy in the $3k-4k range is likely to be just fine until you decide you have the skill to play a professional violin in the $10k+ range.

Since you are in Europe, you should also try Corilon Violins, which does online sale -- corilon.com -- and is reputable.

However, note that a player like yourself, with a decent amount of money to spend, no violin experience or knowledge, and no teacher, is a dream sucker for violin shops. It's very easy for them to take advantage of you, selling you a beautiful-looking violin that plays very poorly for its price range and is essentially unloadable except onto a sucker.

Plenty of teachers give online lessons. Do NOT try to teach yourself from online videos or you'll spend the first year of lessons trying to painfully undo all the awful bad habits you've given yourself.

March 22, 2020, 9:20 PM · Lydon, I don’t make my living from it but I can do simple things like carve a bridge or adjust a sound post or measure the projection, etc and my father was a master woodworker so I’ve been working with wood of all kinds for over 40 years.

I do agree totally with Lydia that a very good travel case that is overhead compartment friendly Is important, and definitely agree that online individual lessons to supplement online learning is also very important.

I’ve heard good things about Corilon also but have no personal experience with them so I can’t directly recommend them.
Good luck !!

March 22, 2020, 9:42 PM · Corilon has pretty high prices and their repairs are no where near as skilled as Jacob Saunders, from what I have been able to gather
March 22, 2020, 9:49 PM · Totally agree with Lyndon that Corilon’s prices seem to be on the higher side but their reputation is good; I can’t comment on the ability of their luthiers though.
March 22, 2020, 10:18 PM · they don't make cracks disappear like Jacob can, probably structurally sound though.
Edited: March 29, 2020, 10:52 AM · Hi,there,From my limited experience,I would be inclined to spend
$2000.00 on a good bow,and $1000.00 on the Violin.Then later,if you are still keen on playing ,you will have a good Bow,and only need to upgrade your Violin.(a good bow can really help with good tone and sound)
Just my thoughts, :-)

Here is an example of what can be bought for less than $1000.00 (the photos could be shown to a luthier for
checking for faults)

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Alte-deutsche-Meister-Violine-Geige-Prell-Markneukirchen-1946/324096866290?hash=item4b75adb7f2:g:Gg4AAOSwOX1eJeok


An example of a good bow https://www.ebay.com/itm/Fine-Old-W-E-Dorfler-Master-Violin-Bow-Pernambuco-and-Silver-mounted/184076524822?hash=item2adbd0dd16:g:QmYAAOSwFGxdCMLR


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