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Best beginner violins
What instruments would you reccommend for an adult beginner?
Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 Topic Rating: 5 (7 votes) 
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MrYikes
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December 19, 2014 - 6:46 pm
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So here is what a $30 Crescent violin sounds like

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Fiddlestix
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December 19, 2014 - 9:48 pm
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Sounds like a French horn, lol

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DanielB
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December 20, 2014 - 12:33 am
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It sounds better than I would have expected, actually.  The lower midrange has a little bit of life and warmth to it that could be promising.  Probably won't ever be a really loud instrument, but that can be nice.

G string sounds a little strong.   If that persists after maybe putting on a better set of strings, may need to adjust the bridge a bit, and likely the soundpost.  It's hard to tell with strings of unknown quality and condition. 

A few pics could be nice.  The bridge may be a bit thick, since it usually is on inexpensive instruments.  How is the action?

Is it yours, MrYikes?  A new acquisition, perhaps?  If so, congrats!

I don't think it sounds all that bad, though.  With some TLC and a bit of fussing, a set of strings that suits it, and some time for you to get used to the instrument's quirks, I think it could sound rather nice.

"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

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EricBluegrassFiddle
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December 22, 2014 - 7:40 am
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Hmm I couldn't hear the link?

" I just keep telling myself...."It's all about becoming one with your bow"

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Tyberius
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December 22, 2014 - 4:35 pm
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It sounds like cheap strings. I concur what Daniel . Also sounds a bit out of tune. Perhaps if its new, the strings are not fully stretched yet. Not bad. I have a similar one I keep in my car for road travel. Sounds about the same. The strings cost 2x as much as the violin and they are NOT great strings. LOL... but, it does work and allows me to play on the road.

"I find your lack of Fiddle, disturbing" - Darth Vader

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MrYikes
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December 22, 2014 - 4:53 pm
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 Here's another quicky, maybe this will work for you.

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EricBluegrassFiddle
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April 24, 2015 - 12:59 pm
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Sorry guys as I haven't been around lately. I practice alot and also I have been busy with alot of other stuff.

I've been really doing alot of research on intermediate level Violins $400 upwards of $800 bucks thereabouts ( maybe it needs another thread LOL ) but I'm thinking the best bang fer the buck is going to be a decent quality Chinese made fiddle this time around. My beloved Gliga is performing marvelously but I'm possibly looking for a decent 2nd instrument that I can play more old-time music on and tune in alternate tunings etc, take to jams.

I've been in contact with a few speciality shops in the US who cater to the fiddle world, namely Bluegrass, Old-Time, Celtic and the like. Anyways, I've been impressed with what I've been hearing, seeing and researching. One of these dealers said the fiddles are completely made in small Chinese shops from start to finish in one shop by a team of builders. Each builds a fiddle from start to finish rought cutting everything with hand tools. The speed, precision, and quality of these Fiddles are impressive for the price.

The owner said they work with 2 small shops in the Beijing area, they tell them what they wants and they make it, it get's approved and then shipped for sale. When they get to the shops they file the nuts, reset soundposts and check bridges and pegs...that's it. The owner said they've been really impressed by the quality of wood, varnishes ( especially antique varnishes, even doing distressed looks ) and sound. They say that they tend to be mature and fairly resonant for a new Violin, especially since the antiqued finishes are so thin, which they think allows them to "loosen" up a bit quicker than heavier varnished instruments. They are mostly priced from $400 to $800. I see medium to tight grained Spruce tops and also nicely flamed Maple sides and backs, with some that have a "funkier" odd grain as well. All sorts of interesting finishes, some antiqued, some distressed almost even, and some not so impressive. Most are "Strad" style patterns and the scrolls look pretty tightly carved. The sound clips sent have been impressive for the pricepoint.

I've read that some of these Chinese guys are farmers and hand craftsmen by trade so working with their hands, with precision and speed comes natural to them. No wonder so many European makers are showing up in China making deals with small shops for new lines of Fiddles.

So what do you guys say? I'd like to hear what you guys think about it and see if we can get this thread rolling again LOL.

" I just keep telling myself...."It's all about becoming one with your bow"

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Fiddlerman
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April 25, 2015 - 7:21 am
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That's the way it works Eric. That is how we get such great instruments at unbelievably low prices. Good luck with your purchase.

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

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coolpinkone
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April 25, 2015 - 12:36 pm
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Hello Mr. Yikes.

Sounds to me like the violin is perfectly playable.  I have a $59 dollar Pink Mendini gathering dust somewhere.. but it plays well enough for someone to use to learn or practice.   

I have a youtube link somewhere that I did for newbies.  It is the Cecelio brand that Fiddleman carries and reviews.  Just to kind of let people know you can buy a cheap violin and learn to play on it. 

My thoughts with violin... always buy the best your can afford.  But don't let $ keep you from playing.  🙂

Thanks for the Sample.

Vibrato Desperato.... Desperately seeking vibrato

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Schaick
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April 26, 2015 - 8:50 am
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I am amazed at the difference there is in violins!!

The one I borrowed for a short time - brand new, very tinny, does not hold the notes for very long [no blooming quality] and now that I have something to compare it to is heavy.

Then there is my 1930-40's freeby which ended up being in the $600 category.  I was told is is a German copy of a French copy of a Strad.  Good old Berty has improved over time.  Light weight but can really sing loud and hold those notes!!  Blooming quality is now present on 3 of the strings.  

Berty is not very attractive, worn spots, scraps and scratches.  Even in people I tend to look past appearances and into the eyes and heart, Berty is beautiful!!!

Violinist start date -  May 2013  

Fiddler start date - May 2014

FIDDLE- Gift from a dear friend. A 1930-40 german copy, of a french copy of a Stradivarius.  BOW - $50 carbon fiber. Strings - Dominants with E Pirastro Gold string.

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EricBluegrassFiddle
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April 27, 2015 - 9:06 am
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Schaick said
I am amazed at the difference there is in violins!!

The one I borrowed for a short time - brand new, very tinny, does not hold the notes for very long [no blooming quality] and now that I have something to compare it to is heavy.

Then there is my 1930-40's freeby which ended up being in the $600 category.  I was told is is a German copy of a French copy of a Strad.  Good old Berty has improved over time.  Light weight but can really sing loud and hold those notes!!  Blooming quality is now present on 3 of the strings.  

Berty is not very attractive, worn spots, scraps and scratches.  Even in people I tend to look past appearances and into the eyes and heart, Berty is beautiful!!!

I assume you mean it was a Chinese built Violin?

Tinny is not a good attribute, but, alot of Bluegrass fiddlers like Fiddles that have a "bright" sound a bit of "edge" and notes that decay or drop off quickly. This is because when playing a fast fiddle tune, there's more separation in the notes as opposed to a Violin thats "boomy" with alot of sustain like a classical player might like. However "tinny" nobody likes. Could be that the soundpost needed to be moved over a bit and adjusted or refit?

I've played a few really nice "turn of the century" German Trade fiddles, even started a thread about them. Some are fantastic and some are complete dogs. I've seen some that look like they've been through WW2 and have been repaired so much it's a wonder they are even playable! My only issue with the ones I've seen is they have "low" neck angles, so the action tends to be really high, and the necks are VERY thin, especially at the nut. And some of them have twisted scrolls and tops that have sunk in.

Although, sound wise the two that I played were excellent once they were set up, they were really too bassy sounding and didn't cut well enough for my tastes. Although I know some REALLY good ones can be had out there. Alot of those old fiddles were built with old growth tone wood and are so old and dried out, the tops really resonate.

Still though, I'm thinking in the "step-up" category say intermediate entry-level and student models, on up to just below the really high end benchmade stuff, China is pretty hard to beat IF you DO the research and find reputable dealers that work with reputable builders...which is what I've been doing. I'd say between $400 and about say $800 - $900, Chinese violins are the way to go.

" I just keep telling myself...."It's all about becoming one with your bow"

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