Which Instrument

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In the notes and tables that follow, foreign mass produced instruments and in particular Chinese, Korean and East European are usually sold in outfits, that is to say the instrument, case, and bow; whereas the more expensive European mass produced,old factory copies or ordinary hand made instruments are usually sold on their own often necessitating additional purchases of case and bow. A newly commissioned hand crafted instrument will normally have a case to go with it.

In deciding which outfit to buy, it is worth considering the 'upgraded' version usually with ebony pegs and fingerboard, tailpiece with built in adjusters, and good strings such as Dominant. If the outfit includes a bow with a plastic frog, see if you can change the bow for one with an ebony frog which will better stand up to a rehair.

Whether or not to purchase a very old instrument or a more recently made one depends very much on one's financial circumstances. The very old ones will cost much more and likely to be in need of more frequent expensive repairs, whereas a more recently handmade instrument should be trouble free for most of one's playing life and can sound equally good. However, the joy of owning and playing an 'old Venetian' I am sure will never be lost.