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jacklinks

1920-1930s Roth prices are getting high

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We all know about the approx $16k USD one that sold on Tarisio New York in the summer. There were two on the recent Tarisio London that went for approx $12k USD each. The one on the current Tarisio NY is already at $9k USD with over a week left.

The buyers at auction could be flipping them for even higher prices. Are there not better violins available in the $10-$15k range? Are people buying them more with a speculative motivation Thinking prices will continue to rise?

Seems like when you get in the $15k range, you open the door for a lot of other options for good violins.

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I think it’s an interesting phenomenon. Violins made of good wood with good varnish by competent workers(we are assuming these are top line examples) with a specific provenance, and some age. That’s worth something. What are they worth? How do they play? Maybe they are worth the price?

In Baseball, front offices are eschewing the high-priced elite veterans in favor of lower-cost youngsters who are almost as good. Maybe this is just the equivalent.

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2 minutes ago, PhilipKT said:

In Baseball, front offices are eschewing the high-priced elite veterans in favor of lower-cost youngsters who are almost as good. Maybe this is just the equivalent.

Yeah, and I guess in the case of these Roths, they could be considered either the lower cost youngster or the veteran (when compared to contemporary makers). But I suppose it is the former in the violin world.

But it just seems like a lot of money for a workshop violin (albeit I’m sure they are good instruments). 

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12 minutes ago, jacklinks said:

Yeah, and I guess in the case of these Roths, they could be considered either the lower cost youngster or the veteran (when compared to contemporary makers). But I suppose it is the former in the violin world.

But it just seems like a lot of money for a workshop violin (albeit I’m sure they are good instruments). 

On the one hand I agree with you completely, but on the other hand, Vuilluame violins are “Shop” instruments too. And these are presumably the top Roth models, well made by excellent, if anonymous, workers.

although now I wonder if perhaps those workers left the shop and made individual names for themselves, as did many of the Vuilluame guys, and if so who are they?

Jacob? Was kannst du darüber erzählen?

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Some of the old "Roth" instrument are quite nice. Maybe not tonally, but from a workmanship and artistic perspective. In many ways better than some instruments which have been elevated to "highly desirable" status over the last 40 years, which have neither.

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I just noticed this price increase myself while perusing some shops' inventories.

I'm quite happy I held onto my 1930s era Roth viola.  It's in remarkably good condition other than a strange NAZI OKW brand on the back that's unsightly but historically interesting.

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On 10/31/2019 at 7:09 AM, Stephen Fine said:

I just noticed this price increase myself while perusing some shops' inventories.

I'm quite happy I held onto my 1930s era Roth viola.  It's in remarkably good condition other than a strange NAZI OKW brand on the back that's unsightly but historically interesting.

Not only am I happy that prices and recognition (possibly) are going up, I can now be a little less embarrassed when people ask me about my violin and I tell them Roth.  Such a stupid stigma associated with "workshop violins."  Honestly, mine is in pristine condition, looks beautiful except for an area where the previous owner tried to used some indelible solvent to clean a US Quarter sized area by the f-hole, AND MOST OF ALL....it sounds soooo good.  Maybe if it sounded horrible, people wouldn't ask me about it, but then I would have never bought it.  Hooray for German, trade, workshop instruments!

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I finally got around to wiring money to Germany for a certificate.  My Roth's tag didn't have a  year on it, so I've always wondered when it was from.  They were able to date it to August 1931 by the serial number in the brand.

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31 minutes ago, Stephen Fine said:

I finally got around to wiring money to Germany for a certificate.  My Roth's tag didn't have a  year on it, so I've always wondered when it was from.  They were able to date it to August 1931 by the serial number in the brand.

They charge so much.  Mine has the label, branding, and all other measurements and aesthetics that go towards the instrument being authentic.  Good enough for me...for now lol.

BTW, I understand labels mean nothing.  I am talking in the aggregate...

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1 minute ago, violinnewb said:

They charge so much.  Mine has the label, branding, and all other measurements and aesthetics that go towards the instrument being authentic.  Good enough for me...for now lol.

BTW, I understand labels mean nothing.  I am talking in the aggregate...

Yeah.  I probably wouldn't have bothered except my label didn't have a year on it and I've always been curious about the provenance of the NAZI brand on the back.  It was a bit pricey.

I've got some more detective work to do to figure out the branding now, but at least I think I can write off the idea that the Roths branded the instrument themselves.

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1 minute ago, Stephen Fine said:

Yeah.  I probably wouldn't have bothered except my label didn't have a year on it and I've always been curious about the provenance of the NAZI brand on the back.  It was a bit pricey.

I've got some more detective work to do to figure out the branding now, but at least I think I can write off the idea that the Roths branded the instrument themselves.

If it sounds great, looks great, and most importantly...you love the instrument...time will only help monetarily appreciate the instrument, especially a Roth viola. 

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In Baseball, front offices are eschewing the high-priced elite veterans in favor of lower-cost youngsters who are almost as good.

Unfortunately, when the outcome of a critical game hinges on the experience-based ability of batters to recognize and lay off pitches that finish out of the strike zone, forcing pitchers to come in with offering they can drive to avoid walking them, the difference looms large. Jim Leyland's 2006 whiz kid Tigers tore through the American League playoff competition like wet tissue paper, but they weren't able to handle the pressure at the big dance, where the Cardinals' "veteranosity" proved decisive.

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