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E.H. Roth Violin


KB_Smith
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I am considering upgrading to a better violin and would appreciate help and advice from the many Maestronet experts. 

I'm looking at this E.H. Roth 1936 Strad 1700 reproduction at my local violin shop in Chantilly, VA.   Price seems to be in line with many other E.H. Roth violins from 1920s & 1930s ($9,500).  See below what Wikipedia says about gradiation of Roth violins from its 1920s catalogues.  But there is no mention of a Strad 1700 reproduction in the list.  Perhaps Roth started producing a reproduction of a Strad 1700 in the 1930s?  Or perhaps it is Roth's student-level product and did not get graded with the other models?  Do any of you know anything about the quality of a Roth Strad 1700 model?  Also, would appreciate if anyone thinks this is not a genuine EH Roth violin and why.  Thank for the help.

The following are the standard gradations as listed in the 1920s Roth catalogues - the closer to the top of the list, the higher the quality of the violin:

- XIR: copy of either Stradivari or Guarneri, often made to order for specific well-known artists (look for an extra label inside the violin stating the commissioner's name) and always hand-signed across the main label by Roth himself (a guarantee of highest grade Roth instruments)

- XR: copy of Stradivari 1725

- IXR: copy of Guarneri 1736

- VIIIR: copy of Stradivari 1724

- VIIR: copy of Stradivari 1722

- VIR: copy of Guarneri 1732

- VR: copy of Ruggieri

- IVR: copy of Stradivari 1718

- IIIR: copy of Amati

- IIR: copy of Guarneri 1734

- IR: copy of Stradivari 1714

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I do plan to ask Herr Roth if I decide to buy it, but thought I'd first hear from MN experts.  Roth charges 170 EU to confirm it is their instrument.  I'm equally interested in hearing what MN community knows about this particular model - Reproduction of Strad 1700 - as I am in anyone's opinion of its authenticity.  I'm assuming this is indeed authentic. But I've had great help on another violin from MN folks who seem to know what to look for.  Thanks for commenting.

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18 minutes ago, Strad O Various Jr. said:

1700 Strad is the cheapest model

In the earlier days the quality difference between the numbers wasnt so much. That gap widened tremendously by the 60s and 70s. I'm not sure what to make of this one

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In my opinion there's something not right about this violin.

As Strad O Various Jr. says, the Stradivarius 1700 model is the most basic EH Roth model. I haven't seen many EH Roths for the late 1930s but none of them had this kind of very smooth tradey varnish.

My main concern is that this is a Guarneri "copy" not a Strad model, at least judging by the f-holes. Also the serial number seems iffy, or at least the "C".

 

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The 1700 model (120-R) was not designated as such until the 1930's. Prior to that, they were labeled as:

Copy of Antonius Stradivarius

Made Under The Supervision of

Ernst Heinrich Roth

They were not branded, either. They are listed in the 1924 catalog as made by  Ernst Heinrich Roth's son, Albert Roth. This has been verified in personal communications with Wilhelm Roth

These early 120-Rs do have a very shiny hard "tradey" reddish-brown varnish. I think that the 130-Rs have a more typical Roth varnish.

Below is a picture of the page from the 1924 catalog.

 

 

EHR_Catalouge_1924_Page_14.jpg

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@KB_Smith

If you're focused on purchasing a Roth violin, I would highly recommend looking around at other Roth's available in shops in the Philadelphia - DC corridor. It would be well worth your trip to explore other options.

Furthermore, at that price(!), the shop should obtain the certificate of authenticity from the Roth firm. Mr. Roth is a very pleasant person to deal with, and can provide the certificate quickly.

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Ignoring brand and label this looks in my eyes like a rather brand new instrument which I'm used to see from some dubious Eastern European shops, maybe using an older Markneukirchen scroll. Crackling the varnish and causing a little crack at the edges isn't unusual with them neither. FWIW

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Because I'm not so very experienced with genuine Markneukirchen EH Roth brands, I searched a bit. Here are two from Maestronet, the third from a dealer's FB site https://www.facebook.com/peterhallviolins/posts/we-have-this-ernst-heinrich-roth-violin-in-for-restoration-and-sale-1925-and-a-c/2413408802212178/

the last from the OP. So please compare and find the ten differences.:)

Screenshot_2021-01-23 post-51863-0-76174900-1354537103 jpg (JPEG-Grafik, 1008 × 756 Pixel).png

Screenshot_2021-01-23 post-48427-0-72701400-1406178085 jpg (JPEG-Grafik, 1600 × 1201 Pixel).png

Screenshot_2021-01-23 Peter Hall Violins.png

Screenshot_2021-01-23 EH-Roth-Brand jpg fe132395fff6642c4239716dd78f4d80 jpg (JPEG-Grafik, 1152 × 864 Pixel).png

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 I like GeorgeH's suggestion to shop more Roth's in the Philly-DC corridor.  Brobst Violin, a very well respected shop in Alexandria, and who I trust more than my local violin shop, has a 1922 Roth Guarnerri reproduction available for the same price, but probably won't give me the $1,000 trade for my current violin my local shop will.  

As for the photo of the brand in the OPs violin, when I look inside the violin as perpendicular as I can, the apparent misalignment of the top and bottom halves of the brand my be caused by the angle at which the photo was taken.  I was doing this solo this morning.  And it was quite difficult to hold a flashlight in one f-hole with one hand, while trying to align my iPhone camera lens through the other f-hole AND press the button to take the photo with my other hand.  It was a bit of a one-hand balancing act with the phone and I did not get completely perpendicular to the brand at the instant the photo was taken.  When I look inside the violin, the brand appears to line up pretty well.

I will say this Strad 1700 feels and sounds 100 times better than my current student-level violin, whether or not it is genuine Roth.  But whether it is worth the $8,500 (plus my trade-in) is the decision I'll need to make.   Thanks to all for your input.  I always appreciate the comments and advice.

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1 hour ago, KB_Smith said:

 

I will say this Strad 1700 feels and sounds 100 times better than my current student-level violin, whether or not it is genuine Roth.  But whether it is worth the $8,500 (plus my trade-in) is the decision I'll need to make.   Thanks to all for your input.  I always appreciate the comments and advice.

It isn't a Strad 1700.

It seems clear that you would be better off spending a further $1000 at Brobst to get a genuine example rather than trade in your current violin under the illusion that you're saving $1000.

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2 hours ago, KB_Smith said:

 I will say this Strad 1700 feels and sounds 100 times better than my current student-level violin, whether or not it is genuine Roth.

IMHO, when you are approaching $10K, that would probably be true of a lot of violins you might try, which have no "questions" attached to them.  :)

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