Why Chinese Violins Are Better

Posted by admin 12/12/2016 1 Comment(s) Educational,

Why Chinese Violins Are Better

This As you may already know, most violins today are supplied by China. There‘s a lot of prejudice against these violins, please read our article “Are Chinese violins crap?” if you haven’t already.

In the past 20 years, Chinese violin makers have really been upping their game. They are now importing their woods from Europe, various parts of Asia, or wherever they can get a hold of high quality Spruce and Maples. It’s a level playing field, and the Chinese are winning.

After testing hundreds of European made violins, we have come to the conclusion that in order to get the same quality European made violin, you will have to pay 2-4 times more than the Chinese made violins. It comes down to their cheap labor.


It takes approximately 300 hours to fully build a violin. Imagine paying George in Texas $20/hour to build this for you. That would result in a $6000 violin! Luthiers (violin makers) usually charge much more than $20/hour. This is why they still sell violins for $20,000.00 and up. Personally we think that any bench made Chinese violin for $3000-$4000 match that quality and sound (by the right maker of course). Example: Holstein, Fiddlerman, Ming Jiang Zhu and Scott Cao violins.


Our house brands, Fiddlerman and Holstein are really great examples of cultivating direct partnerships with some exceptional workshops in China and the value is simply outstanding. Though other manufacturers are still building quality instruments, they are inflating that cost with advertising and a brand name. With our Violins you are paying for an exceptional instrument and our reviews and customer feedback reflect it.

Thankfully, you don’t need to spend that type of money in order to get a great violin. You can get a decent beginner violin for as low as $100, but we highly recommend spending at least a few hundred to get something that has been properly setup.


1 Comment(s)

Sandi Nicol:
17/05/2017, 12:41:21 PM, Writing.Com/authors/amiracol

I, for one, completely agree with this article. As an adult, I have purchased 4 student level violins - all Chinese made, 3 were under $100 and 1 was $150 (USD). All 4 sounded beautiful. I have, also, owned 2 German made violins, that sounded absolutely beautiful, as well. I had bought both of the German made violins used, but I have seen how much they go for new, which was $200 for the most recent "modern" one - not really sure how much my first one would be worth today, but if I still had it, it would be over 100 years old and I would be it's forth owner. I currently own a "student level" German-factory made violin appraised at around $140 - and a Chinese equivalent would be about $45 to $80 max. I've owned 3 of these cheaper Chinese-factory made violins - and they sounded just as good as the $140 German-factory made violin I now own. I recently bought a Holstein Traditional Red Mendelssohn from the Fiddlershop (aka: the Fiddlerman) .. though I do not know for sure "where" it was made, I was told it was made overseas. So, I will assume, this is a Chinese made violin. No biggy! I recently played a German handmade Roth violin that was made back in 1916, appraised at $1,300 due to a repaired crack over the sound post. It sounded great, but would have appraised much higher, if there was no damage. My point? My HTRM violin, bought for $1,780.00 (USD) - most likely made in China ... sounds just as great as that German handmade violin did, but for a fraction of the cost. Keep in mind, that the German violin would have been appraised between $4K and $6K if it hadn't been damaged. It may be that "Once Upon A Time" Chinese violins were junk .. but not so much now. Just because a violin was made in China, does not mean it is junk. Unfortunately, you are going to come across the "violin snobs" that will never change their minds about non-European made violins. Please, don't pay attention to such ones.

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