Why Chinese Violins Are Better

Posted by admin 12/12/2016 4 Comment(s) Educational,

Why Chinese Violins Are Better


As you may already know, China supplies most violins on the market today. Unfortunately, there's a deep-seated prejudice against products with the common "Made in China" label, including string instruments.  But is it warranted? Are Chinese violins crap?




During the last 20 years, Chinese violin makers have stepped up their game. They import wood from Europe, various parts of Asia, or wherever they find high quality Spruce and Maple.


We now know, that in order to get the same quality European made violin; you will have to pay two-to-four times more than the Chinese-made ones. The reason is inexpensive labor.



It takes approximately 300 hours to build a violin. Imagine paying George Smith in Texas $20 per hour to build it for you. That's a $6000 violin! (and that's only the labor cost...)


Luthiers (violin makers) generally charge much more than $20/hour. This is why violins sell for $20,000.00 and up.


Personally, we believe that bench-made Chinese violin for $3000-$4000 matches the sought-after quality and sound, depending on the maker of course. Examples of great Chinese violins include Holstein, Fiddlerman, Ming Jiang Zhu and Scott Cao violins.


Our house brands, Fiddlerman and Holstein are top-notch student to professional level violins. Fiddlershop sets the example in cultivating direct partnerships with some exceptional workshops in China, and the value is simply outstanding!


While other manufacturers are still building quality instruments, they are inflating the costs with advertising and a brand name. With our violins, you are paying for an exceptional instrument; 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. Thanks, China!







Please contact Fiddlershop via our chat system, support@fiddlershop.com or (954) 530-5999 

if you have any questions. We're always happy to assist! :) 


4 Comment(s)

Sandi Nicol:
17/05/2017, 12:41:21 PM

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.

don rhudy:
14/07/2017, 04:08:53 PM

I did not get either of my two fiddles from Fiddlerman, but I learned a great deal from his videos. I did buy a great carbon fiber bow from him. When I am ready to buy another instrument I will likely buy it from you.

Ivy Shaffer:
29/08/2017, 06:55:42 PM

I just bought the MJZ905 AND the 3/4 Fiddlerman Concert Violin for my daughter. We are both beginners, however these instruments are beautiful in sound, quality and ability to play. I admit I am not an expert on this subject, however there is no way I could ever afford two quality instruments. I opted to spend more money on my violin as I have a music background on the piano so I tend to be a bit pickier then a child starting out. What I really appreciate is that Pierre knows his violins, has played European instruments and is wise to see the evolution of the quality of violins from China. That being said, I have personally visited China and watched women tirelessly work on silk art that took them a year or more to complete. I have also seen Jade being carved in Bejing and sold rather cheap. But that's just it, the quality and workmanship is incredible and the artists and luthiers take great pride in their work. Hence you get a quality piece of art or in this case a quality violin that would probably sell for thousands more had it come from a known region such as northern Europe or Italy. I love my Ming violin, I have had it for less than a week and I can honestly say I can't keep my hands off of it. It's beautiful to look at and I know will take my ability to play to higher levels faster than if I stayed on a rental violin. I am so happy that Fiddlershop offers these violins, they certainly know the business and workmanship that goes into making these instruments. With my purchase it was the sound that led me to buy the Ming, not where it originated. Thank you Pierre and Mike!

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Mark Clement:
21/01/2018, 10:46:05 AM

Hi. What do you think of the Elisa Damian violin? Thanks, Mark

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