Report top symphonies and pressure to spend $30,000 in The Fingerboard Posted October 23, 2000 crystal, Setting aside any definition of "better", if you play two violins, no matter what the price difference is between them, and you don't hear any difference in the tone they produce, it's your ears that are at fault. Even the worst factory violins sound distinct from one another. Ditto the way they play. (And of course this is all influenced by set-up, strings, the bow, etc. plus the player's technical approach.) People routinely spend $30,000 on their cars, even though basic car functionality can be had for much less. In light of this, a professional player spending $30K should not seem strange, especially since, unlike cars, instruments typically hold/increase their value, as opposed to plunging in value like a rock the moment it leaves the dealer's. Presumably the reason more amateurs don't make a violin a luxury-expense like a car is that financing is readily available for expensive cars.