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well 'flamed' / 'figured' back - how important?


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It might be a silly question and the answer may simply be that it depends on the density of the wood, but I recently saw a professional Scottish traditional player at a concert playing a violin which looked like it had little or no significant figuring on the back and sides. It sounded lovely. 

If well figured wood is an indicator of superiour materials, are there also top quality instruments that exhibit little or no markings? I think you could objectively say that would make for a less beautiful violin, but is it strictly less likely to have a good tone?

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