Musician Compares the Sound of Four Violins at Vastly Different Price Points

The very talented musician Mark Landes conducted an interesting experiment at Peter Prier and Sons Violins in Salt Lake City, Utah, where he musically sampled several different violins at three vastly different prices points. The first violin cost $62 while the other violins started at much higher price points. The first, a 1794 Vincenzo Panormo cost $130,000, while the 1866 Giuseppe Scarpella cost $185,000 and a 1700 Carlos Antonio Testore, which costs a whopping $285,000. Landes determined the Scarpella to be his favorite while he was more than happy to give the $62 violin away.

Why are some violins so expensive??? I went into Peter Prier and Sons in Salt Lake City, where I put to the test a violin I bought off of Amazon for $62, and an antique Italian violin for $285,000. …The first song I play is Hallelujah, and the second is AC/DC “Thunderstruck”.

Musician Davie504 had previously conducted a similar experiment but with basses.


Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails.