The Acoustic Guitar Forum

Go Back   The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > Other Stringed Instruments

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 06-13-2018, 06:34 AM
MikeBmusic MikeBmusic is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: On the Mass/NH border
Posts: 5,104
Default Chinese violins

I see these on fleabay all the time for usually cheap money. The other day a local person posted in a FB group that he had 10 of these violins for sale 'cheap' ($75) as he wanted to get rid of them before moving. Said they normally 'retail' for $199, he sells them for $125 set up and tuned. Case and bow included.
I asked, and he would not provide a video/audio sample of what they sounded like, making excuses.
Any fiddle players here who know anything about cheap violins that are worth the (under $100) money? I'll probably never get good enough to play one at a gig, but it would be nice to have the 'sound' available occasionally for recording. I've also seen a fretted violin - specifically made for guitarist/mandolin players.
__________________
Mike

My music: http://www.reverbnation.com/mikebirchmusic

2017 Taylor 114ce-N
2012 Taylor 310ce
2011 Fender CD140SCE
Ibanez 12 string a/e
73 Epiphone 6830E 6 string (made in 71?)

72 Fender Telecaster
Epiphone Dot Studio
Epiphone LP Jr
Chinese Strat clone ($25!)

Kala baritone ukulele
Seagull 'Merlin'
Washburn Mandolin
Luna 'tatoo' a/e ukulele
antique banjolin
Squire J bass
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 06-13-2018, 12:50 PM
Br1ck Br1ck is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: San Jose, Ca
Posts: 2,574
Default

If you go into any serious violin shop, you will find that they have instruments they figure would be ok to start on. They sell for around $500.

If you go into a very good guitar store, it is close to the same thing. The basic mandolin that any serious player would recommend is around $350.

There are a lot of instrument looking objects out there sold by big box online stores who know there is a market for cheap.
__________________
1980 Martin M 36
1970 Guild D 35
1965 Epiphone Texan
2014 Martin 00 15 12 fret custom
Pono OP 30 D parlor
Pono OP12-30
Pono MT uke
Goldtone Paul Beard squareneck resophonic
Fluke tenor ukulele
Boatload of home rolled telecasters

"Shut up and play your guitar" Frank Zappa
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-13-2018, 05:57 PM
Maryc-k Maryc-k is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: north of Boston
Posts: 549
Default

There’s a violin guy who has violins for $300 or $400 out of Lawrence, Mass (check craigslist) and one near Ipswich (Boxford I think- Rowanstrings.com). If you are close to that area, I’d look there. Forget the fretted violins. You want to be able to do those cool slides and a variety of other techniques. $100 isn’t much for a violin. A good set of strings are over $50 alone.

I bought a cheap violin for $100. It cost me more than that to make it playable. Then the case fell apart. Never again.

Btw, I know that guy selling violins on the FB group. Stay away. Stay very far away. He imported and sold Ovation, Taylor and PRS copies until the lawsuits started rolling in. He disappeared for a while and I see he’s back with these violins.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-13-2018, 09:16 PM
jim1960 jim1960 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 1,627
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeBmusic View Post
I see these on fleabay all the time for usually cheap money. The other day a local person posted in a FB group that he had 10 of these violins for sale 'cheap' ($75) as he wanted to get rid of them before moving. Said they normally 'retail' for $199, he sells them for $125 set up and tuned. Case and bow included.
I asked, and he would not provide a video/audio sample of what they sounded like, making excuses.
Any fiddle players here who know anything about cheap violins that are worth the (under $100) money? I'll probably never get good enough to play one at a gig, but it would be nice to have the 'sound' available occasionally for recording. I've also seen a fretted violin - specifically made for guitarist/mandolin players.
I'm pretty sure I know how this story ends.
__________________
Jim

2017 Circle Strings 00 bastogne walnut/sinker redwood
2015 Circle Strings Parlor shedua/western red cedar
2009 Bamburg JSB Signature Baritone macassar ebony/carpathian spruce
2004 Taylor XXX-RS indian rosewood/sitka spruce
2002 Taylor 814ce Limited cocobolo/sitka spruce
1988 Martin D-16 mahogany/sitka spruce


SoundCloud link
Spotify
YouTube
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-13-2018, 09:45 PM
ManyMartinMan ManyMartinMan is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: In The Hills, Off Mulholland
Posts: 2,415
Default

Would stay away. I have a very old German violin that I Roy to keep safe and several years ago I purchased a Chinese violin that looked great. It actually had a twisted neck and was unplayable. You get what you pay for.
__________________
In My Opinion, The Dude.

Enough Guitars To Make A Living With....
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-13-2018, 09:49 PM
bkepler bkepler is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Maryland
Posts: 80
Default

I'm an instrumental music teacher and a few years ago I went on a mission to find the cheapest solid-wood violin that I could recommend to my students who insisted on the $49 fleabay specials. Through International Violin (out of Baltimore, MD), I came up with the Palatino VN-450 for around $90. I had to file the nut slots a hair but it was playable. The weak link in all of these cheap violins is the bow. They're horrible. So that's an automatic replacement that you're already paying for. If you don't mind an ugly violin, contact a local rental shop. They periodically sell off their rental fleet when they're too beat up to go out again. Also, by far the best student string out right now is the Alphayue at less than $20.
__________________
Lowden G-23
Pono DS-20
Takamine EG523SC
Silvertone 1958/9 620 Jumbo
Kay 1961 K6100 "Western Rhythm" Dread
Harmony Archtone H1215 1961
Recording King Dirty Thirties RPH-03-BK
Supertone 1941 3/4 Scale
Oscar Schmidt 3/4 Scale
Kepler Biscuit Reso
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-13-2018, 10:02 PM
momando momando is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: Springfield, MO, USA
Posts: 29
Default

I've tried the same over the years, but none were really playable as they shipped. Most have some terrible thick lacquer and ship with strings that are only suitable as fencing wire. I know enough about violin setup to shape the nut & bridge, fit the pegs, and cut and set a new soundpost. Even after what would be $150 worth of work and $50 worth of strings, it is really a crap shoot. The only decent Chinese models I got from a place on ebay called Yita Music.

In the case of what you are describing, you can go onto Aliexpress and find similar "boxed sets" of 10 instruments. I'd steer clear unless you are a glutton for punishment.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-14-2018, 06:41 AM
jojobean39 jojobean39 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 680
Default

I normally find those types of deals to be too good to be true. But here is a guy who reviews one with pretty positive results:

https://youtu.be/SFaCpYRMKB8
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-14-2018, 06:56 AM
MikeBmusic MikeBmusic is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: On the Mass/NH border
Posts: 5,104
Default

Kind of what I figured. Think I'll save my wife the horrific screeching sounds coming from my music room...
__________________
Mike

My music: http://www.reverbnation.com/mikebirchmusic

2017 Taylor 114ce-N
2012 Taylor 310ce
2011 Fender CD140SCE
Ibanez 12 string a/e
73 Epiphone 6830E 6 string (made in 71?)

72 Fender Telecaster
Epiphone Dot Studio
Epiphone LP Jr
Chinese Strat clone ($25!)

Kala baritone ukulele
Seagull 'Merlin'
Washburn Mandolin
Luna 'tatoo' a/e ukulele
antique banjolin
Squire J bass
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 06-15-2018, 03:45 AM
dbintegrity dbintegrity is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: living in the crotch of long island
Posts: 539
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeBmusic View Post
Kind of what I figured. Think I'll save my wife the horrific screeching sounds coming from my music room...
Heck you can get those great screeching sounds out of a Strad
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 06-15-2018, 11:27 AM
Jim_G Jim_G is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Central Massachusetts
Posts: 1,077
Default

In China they just call them violins.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 06-17-2018, 07:12 PM
Paraclete Paraclete is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: NW Washington
Posts: 303
Default

If you actually care about what a violin sounds and plays like, anything less than an intermediate student model (way more than $500) is a joke. I think itís easier to get a serviceable cheap guitar than a cheap violin.
__________________
2010 Larrivee LSV-11e
2002 Jose Ramirez 4e
1998 Seagull S6+folk, Mi-Si LR Baggs acoustic trio
1986 Charvel Model 3A electric

2001 Fender Jazz standard bass
1935 A-00 Gibson mandolin
1815 JG Hamm violin
Kelii soprano ukulele
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 06-20-2018, 05:15 PM
Rudy4 Rudy4 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,659
Default

There are very good Chinese shop violins, but you do somewhat get what you pay for. I purchased a very nice Chinese production shop violin from International Violin many years ago, sale priced at $450. I kept it for something like 15 years and it appraised (and sold) through Elderly as a consignment for more than I paid for it. If you're not knowledgeable about violins talk to someone who is and listen to them.

A $100 violin will usually sell for half of that as soon as the case is opened. If you actually want to play what you buy then up your ante a bit.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 06-21-2018, 06:19 AM
MikeBmusic MikeBmusic is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: On the Mass/NH border
Posts: 5,104
Default

Way out of my budget (and skill set!) to buy a good one. Curious on why violins don't have some 'decent' lower-budget models available, akin to Yamaha's $200 range for guitars.
And on bows - I understand the good one can be more expensive, but I've seen some 'new style' ones that don't use horse hair so last much longer.
__________________
Mike

My music: http://www.reverbnation.com/mikebirchmusic

2017 Taylor 114ce-N
2012 Taylor 310ce
2011 Fender CD140SCE
Ibanez 12 string a/e
73 Epiphone 6830E 6 string (made in 71?)

72 Fender Telecaster
Epiphone Dot Studio
Epiphone LP Jr
Chinese Strat clone ($25!)

Kala baritone ukulele
Seagull 'Merlin'
Washburn Mandolin
Luna 'tatoo' a/e ukulele
antique banjolin
Squire J bass
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 06-21-2018, 08:01 AM
Rudy4 Rudy4 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 1,659
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeBmusic View Post
Way out of my budget (and skill set!) to buy a good one. Curious on why violins don't have some 'decent' lower-budget models available, akin to Yamaha's $200 range for guitars.
And on bows - I understand the good one can be more expensive, but I've seen some 'new style' ones that don't use horse hair so last much longer.
Good question. I'm unsure of the answer.

The bow is almost on equal footing with the instrument, so don't be surprised if you see recommendations for bows costing way more than you are speculating to pay for a "starter" instrument.

In my case I purchased a lower-end Coda bow which was on the order of $150 if I remember correctly. Bows are designed to be re-haired, but that will normally cost you $50-$75 to have a re-hair done. Depending on your technique you won't need that done often.

Violin can be a "challanging" instrument, and one of the quickest ways you can insure failure is working with synthetic hair. It's just not easy to pull tone from the synthetic hair, so don't shoot yourself in the foot by going for "longer lasting" bow hair.
Reply With Quote
Reply

  The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > Other Stringed Instruments

Thread Tools



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:27 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, The Acoustic Guitar Forum
vB Ad Management by =RedTyger=