So as I am getting back into playing I have a CVN 500 by Cecilio. Will need to buy almost most everything to get it playable (Bridge, tail piece), chin rest, Bow) and it is a decent Fiddle but not quite what I like tone wise. Wondering if anyone has any suggestions on places to buy, internet or otherwise. Other brands, when I was playing 4 years ago Silver Creek was a decent brand I see they have a $300 model but not sure if it is any better than what I have. Anyone have a hook up on a $ to $400 brand they just love. Thank you so much.
Edited by - Creole on 04/20/2022 08:07:14
I have a couple of discontinued Liberty models that I can sell as outfits for $400 with case and bow. They have a good setup and play fine, but I just decided not to carry them several years back, because I found people would rather pay more for better performance. I offered a Southwind model on here for $800 a while back that my main (pro) clients all said they loved the sound and setup of, but it didn't sell. But in the meantime, I 'm busy all the time with $2500 to $10,000 fiddles. I also have some "second" Krutz 400 models that normally sell for $1300- $1500, but had cosmetic damage to the varnish that I normally repair and wholesale off to other dealers. I might set one of those up and sell it, fiddle only, for $400 or $500, depending on looks.
I went a little crazy on the moulahhh and delved into the mid four figures when I bought my good fiddle at the violin shoppe, but I had enough self-control to pass up the low five figure ones...which transported me straight to heaven. The saleslady gently kept me from going nuts, as well. In any case, I'm still thrilled with my purchase.
That range is too low if you’re looking for a decent instrument. There are plenty of violins for sale at that price, but they do not perform well. A decent quality setup can easily cost $400-$500, so there’s no way a violin that costs less than that can be made or set up well.
Keep in mind that the cost of the violin to the business that sells it is going to be somewhat less than its retail price to you, which means that the cost to produce it has to be almost nothing. At that point, you’re not getting anything even remotely good and hand labor that is involved is at the lowest level.
It can be frustrating to hear that you have to spend more money than you’d like, but you have to spend more to get the quality you need to have a fair shake at it. Poor quality instruments are one of the greatest causes of frustration and quitting. The violin doesn’t do all the work, but a bad one keeps you from getting anywhere.
I would suggest two options:
1) Look at violins starting around $1000-$2000. At that range you can find reasonably well-made instruments that will have workable setups. Some of these can be made to sound quite good if you’re willing to invest in a better setup.
2) Try renting a violin from a good violin shop that properly sets up all its rental stock (if they’re just pulling the violins out of boxes, it’s a waste of time and money). You can get a violin that would otherwise cost you about $1000 for $20-$30 a month and you can have coverage so that if any damage occurs, you’re not stuck footing a large repair bill. If you don’t love playing, you can stop at any time and you’re not stuck trying to resell a cheap violin in a market that doesn’t want to buy cheap instruments used unless they’re sold for pennies. Most shops offer either a rent-to-own plan or rental credit that you can apply toward purchase of a better violin if you do really enjoy playing and want to upgrade. This is the lowest cost option for getting started and you have a better chance of getting something playable. Online purchases are a real gamble unless you know what to look for.
Royce Burt in Plant City Florida, sells reconditioned fiddles. I think a person will end up being more satisifed with a higher quality used instrument than a very inexpensive new instrument. One of my fiddles is one of Burt's reconditioned instruments. Check Burt's website out. You can contact him and he will help you select the instrument that meets your needs. Great guy to work with.
Check your email. I've got one on your price range. Italian (legit) student instrument that got a girl through high school and into a music major. No fancy wood, but plays and sounds good. Pro setup.
I've got others, but no photos or videos right now on the starter stuff. As others pointed out, if you want to spend a little more, you can get a LOT more. I'll eventually get around to doing photos and videos on some of the starter - level stock, but I just don't have any free time lately.
I'll post a couple for sale here soon, as time allows. But I may not have demo videos. Still too much other work.
'Glenn Boyd Violin' 2 days
'Golden Slippers' 3 days
'Same Tempo Same Sounds' 4 days