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December 6, 2012 - 11:09 pm
Member Since: December 6, 2012
Forum Posts: 6
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Hello everyone! My name is Mary and I currently live in the Florida panhandle.  I've recently started to learn to play the violin (I've been wanting to since grade school-am now in my mid-twenties).  I bought a Skylark violin for $100 (and as I understand it, the quality of it is at the bottom of the rocks!).  What upgrades can I do to get a better sound out of it?  I know I should have gotten a better one, but I am on a tight budget (Just out of the military and going back to school.)  


Thanks for any advice!


December 7, 2012 - 12:03 am
Member Since: May 4, 2012
Forum Posts: 2379
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Different people will have different ideas, but I would say the very first upgrades you can do to make it sound better would be better strings and better rosin than it came with. 

And there are probably worse violins in the world than your Skylark.  We all work with what we can afford.

"This young wine may have a lot of tannins now, but in 5 or 10 years it is going to be spectacular, despite the fact that right now it tastes like crude oil. You know this is how it is supposed to taste at this stage of development." ~ Itzhak Perlman

Michigan, USA

December 7, 2012 - 6:53 am
Member Since: January 21, 2012
Forum Posts: 2647
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Hi, Mary and welcome to the forum.

First off, Daniel is right about the string upgrade. The string's that come with cheap Chinese violin's are not so hot. A decent set of string's can be had for around $25.00 - $35.00, maybe a bit less, even.

The term you use, "bottom of the rocks", is it something you heard after or before you bought the "Skylark". Find out what the return policy is from where you bought it. Not saying it's not a good instrument and won't satisfy your need's to start, but I'm hearing in your voice that you already have doubt's about it, so if you feel that way, don't hesitate to return it and try another, there are plenty of people here in the forum who can help you decide.

The placement of the sound post is critical also. When cheap violin's are produced, the person who set's the sound post and bridge aren't really concerned with sound quality, if it's in there, so beit, it's close enough and it looks right to me.

I just read review's on the "Skylark", some good, some not so good. Here's hoping you got a good one.

Best of luck with your new endeavor.     crossedfingers

Fort Lauderdale
December 7, 2012 - 7:47 am
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 13968

Hi and welcome to the forum Mary :-)

True. Great strings will pick it up. A properly fitted bridge (if it is not already) and sound-post will make all the difference. We receive great violins at Fiddlershop sometimes that don't sound good until we adjust the post properly. If you are ever driving to Fort Lauderdale, bring your fiddle with you and I'll help you out. We have plenty of strings too.
As a matter of a fact, "Picklefish" will be driving to Lauderdale on the 21st??? He lives north of Lauderdale, I believe "Merit Island", but that is only half way from you I guess.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."


December 7, 2012 - 7:53 am
Member Since: April 22, 2012
Forum Posts: 448
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Hi Mary, and welcome to the forum!


Mr Jim  dancing

Kevin M.
Nicholson, Pa

December 7, 2012 - 9:04 am
Member Since: September 10, 2011
Forum Posts: 1969
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Welcome Mary and thank you for your service to our country.  As has been said, strings sounpost adjustment and bridge adjustment can make even a cheap violin sound better. Most violins purchased online and even some from a music shop need these same adjustments.  There are people in here playing on violins that sold for $70.00 so don't fret the price.

December 7, 2012 - 10:20 am
Member Since: December 6, 2012
Forum Posts: 6
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