I purchased one of Scott Cao's Hellier copies 1-1/2 years ago and have been playing on it ever since. I play all sorts of fiddle on it - old time, BG, Scottish, and a lot of original tunes. This is easily and hands down the best sounding violin I have ever held in my hands. Deep rich low tones, full throaty mid-range and cutting, clear highs. And POWERFUL - it cuts thru the chatter at a jam session and does great at all acoustic gigs. The range of volume is so wide and easily controlled. When matched with a DPA 4099 mic aimed at the bottom of the bass side F-hole, well its also the best on-stage sound I've ever had - and I've tried a LOT of different mics and fiddles, from Barcus-Berrys to Jordans. Finish wise - well the one I have is a darker brown then the pic below, almost like well worn leather. Its gorgeous. The STV 1500 line is made by one luthier in the Calif shop, start to finish, no production line work or bringing in semi-finished fiddles from China and finishing them there. I can't vouch for the other models offered in the STV 1500 line, but this one? You'll need to pry it from my cold, dead hands! It ain't cheap, a bit north of $7K, well worth it to me.
Edited by - wrench13 on 10/02/2023 12:45:23
As the saying goes ...."Handsome is, as handsome does"
'uh-oh...' 5 hrs
'Fiddle Case Hygrometer' 16 hrs
'A Hand For The Band' 17 hrs