Instrument Spotlight: A Customer's POV Review of the Ming Jiang Zhu 905
For less than $2,000, the Ming Jiang Zhu 905 gives violinists an amazing professional quality. It's warm, balanced tone fits the on-stage soloist, the orchestral musician, the gigging violinist all the way to the intermediate student upgrading from a beginner violin.
Zhu is an award-winning violin maker. He boasts a gold medal from the Violin Society of America. His 905 A Model is sold in 4/4 size only and comes with a Guarneri model chinrest and Aubert Mirecourt bridge.
We'd like to turn over the review of this fabulous violin to our loyal customer, Ivy Shaffer. She's provided all the photos in this article as well.
By Ivy Shaffer - I purchased two incredible violins this week, a Ming Jiang Zha 905 and the Fiddlerman Concert Violin.
I spent months searching for the right instrument; I realized there are very few places one can go to in order to trial a violin. Fortunately, I found Fiddlershop and spent many more hours listening to Pierre play every violin on his website, and then more on YouTube.
As for my MJZ 905, it is truly remarkable. I've many violins on my list, including the GCV Cremona Kreisler and the Scott Cao 750; it was difficult to decide.
I kept listening to the violins, and kept coming back to the MJZ 905. Then I asked myself, what was it that kept drawing me back to that violin? The answer - an impeccable tone that seemed to sing her way into my heart!
This was going to be my violin. The Ming was so openly warm and pleasant. Listening to Pierre play Shindler’s List (see video below) on it just moved me like no other instrument.
I know Pierre is a brilliant violinist with decades of experience, so I would not even come close to doing this sweet violin justice at this time in my journey. However, take note beginners! I can't put it down. Once you hold and play it, you are hooked! What a fantastic incentive to practice!
The violin is easy to play and tune.
The MJZ 905 is as beautiful to look at. The only change I requested was the addition of Larson strings. This violin is everything Pierre talks about in his video and more; it’s an investment that I will surely cherish for many, many years.
To protect my instrument, I purchased the Fiddlerman case, as I definitely wanted to protect it from the weather here in NJ. It’s truly a great case with a zipper top and magnetic lock with rain flaps. It’s nicely made. My favorite part are the two compartments inside to put tuners, rosin, shoulder rests, etc.... The inside is velvet and securely holds the violin in place.
Perhaps the single most important lesson I learned during this journey is that a quality violin such as the MJZ905 does not have to come with the most expensive price tag. I considered this purchase as an important investment that would help me reach my personal goals while enjoying the journey.
I have gained a wealth of knowledge after interacting with Mike and as I said earlier I even bought a second violin for my daughter. Fiddlershop is a great resource with fabulous instruments for anyone. I am truly grateful for their assistance and patience. WHAT A GREAT EXPERIENCE AND I LOVE THE MJZ905A!
ADDENDUM: I have now been playing on the MJZ905 for about one month and this instrument just sings! She's finally a bit broken in and indeed is warm and mellow.
From a beginner's standpoint, I simply can not wait to practice (which is quite the difference from my piano playing days), and I find that this violin is very responsive, allowing me to begin playing faster and learning jigs. I have fun learning to play my scales a bit faster too. Also, with almost four months of instruction and playing under my belt, I am not using any fret tape, and my teacher is very happy with my progress.
One thing I will mention is that I did get it insured. Unlike pianos, this violin travels to and from lessons; I just didn't want anything to happen to it, and I would recommend insurance if you can afford it.
This violin is so beautiful I simply can't say enough.