VSA 2014: Claudia’s Nightmare

claudia fritz paris experiment nightmare

Claudia Fritz is one of the designers of the Paris experiment, the double-blind test of preference of old Italian violins and newly made violins. Its results made a few people angry, with implications such as newly made instruments sound just as good as Strads, and professional violinists can’t tell the difference by playing in a room or concert hall.

Some more official back story:

Personally, I’m very happy this experiment happened. Then again, I’m with the luthiers:

claudia fritz paris experiment results


Either way the results went, people were gonna get angry.



  1. Okay, so I see that the new instruments were anonymized (alas, that we should never learn who N5 is), but out of curiousity who do you regard as the top modern violin-makers?

    1. This study has been out for a little while now, so I think the identity of N5 is out. I forgot who it is. I haven’t seen/heard/handled enough violins to make an informed list of top makers…. ask me again in a few years. 🙂

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