$1000 vs $10,000,000 Violin

$1000 vs $10,000,000 Violin

Welcome to TwoSet Violin. Today we have a very special episode. We will be hearing what it sounds like to have a Ohh! Welcome, – Hello, everyone.
– Benny! He’s an amazing world-class soloist. Yes. And he is worth 10 million dollars. – What instrument do you play?
– It’s the violin. Uhh, it’s a Guarneri del Gesú. Um, 1732 instrument. Um… On loan to me from the Chi Mei Foundation – in Taiwan. Yes.
– Whoa. Do you know how much it’s worth? It’s probably worth… ahh, 7, 8 million dollars? Wait. – 7 or 8.
– Taiwan dollars or US dollars? US dollars. – 10 million.
– It’s actually 10 million Australian dollars. So, we have a… 10 million dollar instrument. My violin is a… 1952… Scrollavezza. It’s worth about… I don’t know, should I say higher so like, if I want to sell this one day…? Yeah yeah yeah, it’s also 10 million dollars. Mine is, um… Unnamed violin. – Brett: So then it –
– Eddy: It says, “Transformed in 1914.” Uh, also known as 野戰琴 (tr. warfare violin). Let’s just say, for the sake of a clickbait thumbnail, it’s worth 1,000 dollars. Yeah. So today’s video is 1,000 dollar violin versus 10 million dollar violin. And 1 dollar violinist, 50 cent violinist, and… – Brett: 10 million dollar violinist.
– Eddy: 10 million violin. So we’re gonna compare these instruments. I mean, we don’t know what’s gonna go or happen. And then we’re gonna try and guess. It’s interesting to know how much… the violin makes a difference, – and how much the player makes a difference, right?
– Yep. I’m really curious what Benny will think of our violins. Should we get Benny to play – Yeah, you can play our violins first – But I think you should play a little bit of your violin, just so everyone can hear. All right. – Damn.
– Might as well just record the whole concerto. – Let’s try your violin first.
– Oh try mine first. Alright. – All right.
– Sound a lot better than I’m used to hearing from that violin! Oh, what did you think of it? I think it’s… I mean, you can say it’s bad. It’s okay. No, I— I mean, like, obviously there’s, like, I can more… I can make a different tone and stuff on the violin I used to play. – Yeah.
– But this one, I mean, I can— I can play it, I meant like… Yeah, you can play on it. Yeah. Alright, I wanna— – I wanna hear you play my violin.
– Oh here we go. – So okay. So,
– Yeah. what did you think of this violin? Personally, I prefer this one. – Oh yes.
– Mm. Guys, I’m gonna sell this soon! You should buy it. Check it out! But, um… uh… I’m curious if the microphone picks up the difference. That’s true. I don’t know, what do you guys think? Can you hear the difference in the violins? Or, better question: Next up, can you hear the difference in the violinists? – I don’t wanna play.
– Alright. – Alright, I don’t think I’ll play actually.
– I can’t. – I’ll just be the… I’ll just be the host.
– Are you serious? I can’t play after that! – Do you hear a difference?
– Sounds like… It literally sounds like half the volume, – for some reason.
– Are you serious?! Yeah. I think you should play the… Guarneri now, – Is that okay?
– like right after, and see.
– Yeah. Don’t drop it. If you drop it, even uh… Mr. Beast can’t save you. I think it’s my first time playing one. I’m losing my Guarneri virginity. Ooh. But I’m too scared to, like… – Benny: No, it… Just don’t –
– Brett: I juist don’t want to like, – hit it, you know?
– Is it insured? Yes, it is. It’s insured! Ohh! Do I sound better? It’s… – I don’t know how to describe it,
– Why’d you just…? I feel like… This, this— – The sound is just –
– The tone of the… The tone, I think it’s, um… Whoa. It feels… deeper. – Oh.
– Can I— Can I just try it? Did I do something? I think, um, your chin was like, kinda— It was like, covering too much of the this, this part. How do you tell?! – Ohh?
– Because so then the— I think it wasn’t as vibrant – as it should be.
– My chin! Dude, we’re getting a free masterclass. Yeah, yeah. This is a masterclass! You look more like Heifetz now. – Oh really?
– Yeah. What does Heifetz play? Brahms. Dammit! Ooh. Whoo! Is that better? I think so. Do you even hear a difference? Play it the old way, how you used to play. I wanna see if I can hear a difference. I can! – I think this one is actually, like…
– Oh my god! – Brett: It’s my fat. It ruins my tone.
– Benny: Because the sound can… Look I don’t know what you guys are thinking like so far, but to me it feels like it’s quite apparent like… It’s 80% player. And 20%… – Thanks man.
– …violin. No no, dude – – Nah, I think –
– I wanna try. – You should try. I think you should try.
– I wanna try. Alright, okay. Is it your first time as well? Yeah, this is my first Guarneri. I’m like, too scared to press. – Brett: I know! I feel scared.
– Benny: I feel— I feel like – Cos I’m scared I’ll like, hit it. I feel like Eddy is more… You’re more like, a Guarneri player. I think your playing style maybe is better for a Strad. Oooh! Strads, come at me. Who’s got one? Alright Guarneris! Accepting donations! Yeah! – Why? How come?
– Why do you think that? Because the way you play it, it’s um… It’s more, um… I don’t know how to like— I feel like you play with the… With more… like, downward. And, um… Brett kinda plays, um… With more like, kind of movement. And then, I think a Strad usually sounds better when you play with, you know, more bow, and then more bow flow, and faster bow speed. (Brett and Eddy) Ohh! Eddy: You’re faster. Brett: Ohh. Eddy: That makes sense! I guess so! And I’m— I’m just, I don’t know, I press more? – Benny: I guess –
– Brett: You just press more! You know what I think would be really funny? One of us goes blindfolded. Yeah. And the other two of us… play… a mixture of these, the three violins. – There’s 6 combinations, right?
– Mhmm. And you have to guess who’s playing, – and what instrument’s being played.
– Oh, can I get a blindfold? – Do you want to be the guesser?
– I wanna guess, I wanna guess. Oh, okay. I don’t wanna play anymore. I don’t think that was Eddy. It was too in tune. That’s— Now that’s tricky! Because Benny can make every violin sound good. I think it’s Benny, on the… Can we do a… Do it again, or no? Benny: You wanna do that again? Dude that sounds so different! Was it the same? – Brett: Why is no one talking?
– Eddy: Yeah. It’s the same? Yeah. Brett: What?! Brett: Why are you guys laughing? No this is— This is a trick? Um… Dude that sounds so different. You guys changed it! You guys changed it. That sounded like… Eddy on something else. Okay, okay, okay. So the first one is… Benny, Guarneri. Second one is… Eddy, Guarneri. Yeah. Oh, that’s so funny! Ohh… You were pretty close. Benny on Guarneri was right. – Yeah.
– But I was playing on your violin. Really! – Yeah.
– Whoa…
– Ohh! Guys, my violin’s still for sale! It sounds amazing! Eddy: Dude… I was panicking when I was trying to play like you. I was like, “I can’t play one note out of tune, or he’ll know.” I heard your bow slip, or something, when you played that, I was like, “Oh that’s Eddy.” – Yeah!
– “He’s panicking.” *plays phrase* Yeah, that one! Brett: Okay. Interesting. It was Benny, right? Which instrument? Was that the Guarneri? Did I get it wrong? Can you play that again? Can you play that again? Now take your blindfold off. Benny on my violin! OHH! Yeah! – I’m not even kidding.
– Ohh! Sh… That sounded so good! I know, I’ve never heard my violin sound like that in my life. Like, never. Really! Bro, I told you, it’s a 10 million dollar… – violinist that matters, man.
– Dude! The player makes a very big difference. Oh my god. But if the same player plays on different instruments, it’s obvious. But if there’s no, like, instrument comparison it’s not as obvious as the player. Do you think— Do you agree? That was your violin! He was just doing double stops on like, Bam! Cos it was all in tune and stuff, so I was like… It sounded like he knew the instrument. But this one, I can do it more in tune, like even, – more, even more precise.
– Precise, yeah. That one is like, okay, like 80%. But the way you played that, I was like, “I don’t think Eddy could do that.” I can’t hit 80% in tune, guys. I think, I think… It has a big sound in a smaller— – I don’t know how it sounds like in…
– This one? – …a hall.
– That is true. My violin… sounds… less. It doesn’t project as much. Uh-huh. (Eddy and Benny) Yeah. (Eddy and Brett) That’s true. – Usually, with this kind of violin,
– This will project. It… it really, like, kinda penetrates… Yeah. …in the hall. And then, maybe it doesn’t sound huge, but the quality of the sound is different. That—That is a very good point. Um… Yeah. – Well I guess –
– That was very interesting. So, the player is very obvious. But the violin, oh my god. I wonder if Benny could guess the violins. If you’re blindfolded. Oh, do you want a blindfold? – Okay!
– You wanna try? – Alright that’ll be funny, that’ll be funny!
– I think it’s gonna be fine. All right. Guys, we got a… Got a hostage here! – No!
– Hostage situation! Okay don’t put it on, don’t put it on. We should just, take the violin and run now. Benny: Okay? Benny: That was it? Benny: That was it?! – Benny: I have to guess that?
– Eddy: Yeah, you have to guess on that! Benny: No no, play it! Just a few, Benny: just a few more notes. Benny: Okay, okay. I think this is Guarneri. Um… I cannot tell who played it, though. Um… – Can I ha— Okay.
– More sample? Yeah. This is hard. Okay. I think the player is different. But… The violin was the same? Wait. Okay. Benny: Was that right? – Yeah. So then who’s the first—
– Yeah.
– Ohh! Then who’s the first one and who’s the second? Eddy: Actually no no no, better question. Which— Who played better? Oh no! First or second? – Eddy: Just say that.
– Benny: I think Brett played first? Benny: And Eddy played… Benny: second? (Eddy and Brett) Yeah. – Really?
– Oh my god. – Yeah, actually.
– Ohh! Okay so that’s another part of the equation, just how good the person’s ears are. So it was very obvious… the 10 million dollar violin player made everything sound like 10 million dollars. And you also have the 10 million dollar ear. You guessed the instruments though! – Between the Guarneri and the…
– That was very quick. – And you got the players right.
– Yeah. – Yeah. That was— That was cool.
– That was insane. Anyway guys, Thank you so much for watching this special episode. Thank you, – Benny…
– Yes, thank you Benny.
– Thank you. – …for showing,
– It was so much fun. showing the world… what 10 million dollar violin playing sounds like. Yeah. Check out his concerts, he’s touring a lot. And… smash the subscribe button, we’ll see you guys next time. Is there anything you want to say? Oh yeah. Oh! Um… It was… It was really fun! I mean, for me it was like, I’ve been watching your shows for like, years. – And now it’s –
– Oh, thanks. Like, it’s funny to see like, the preparation and all like, we just kinda like, just go, and then, you know. Just go! We were just like… Yeah. – We should cut into the first part of it.
– Shh! Just, you know what – …del Gesú. Uh, 1732. Yeah. It’s, uh… It’s a… Wait, are we— Are we… Are we just, like, practicing? Or are we – – No, we started.
– We’re already doing it.
– Okay. You now know how unorganized we are! We plan everything out! Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah.

About the Author: Michael Flood


  1. Know that I can’t be impartial, you must listen from live and find great difference, just like hearing a vinile LP and MP3…

  2. 1st violin more vibrating kind of sound.
    2nd violin less vibration on sound
    3rd violin crisp, less vibration.

    i dont know. maybe its with the amount of rosin on the bow? i notice my violin plays like that. More(newly rosined) rosin more vibration like sound quality. less rosin , more smooth sound quality but almost equal loudness.

    does anyone agree? or disagree?

  3. It's both infuriating and extremely delightful when someone better than you uses your "tools" and creates magic with them, better than you yourself ever could. I get that feeling as an artist in traditional media a lot and it's so funny to see it happen to musicians too 😀 Man, that expensive violin has such a deep and smooth sound compared to the others. It's like when somebody breathes into their stomach while speaking instead of the top of their lungs (does that even make sense?) There's so much variation in volume possible too, it feels like your violins were on a more constant level throughout.

  4. I can tell the difference! The 10 mil violin does sound more clear and richer than the other two :0 and there is a difference between how Brett and Eddy play their and how Benny plays its super interesting!

  5. I honestly believe that the sound from coming from the instrument depends on the player's dynamics. I'm not saying that the more expensive violin might sound better but I honestly think that because we know the violin is more expensive, we think it sounds better or basically we are experiencing a placebo effect.

  6. Interesting, I could tell the initial "blindfoldee" was very surprised at his inability to discern both player and instrument accurately. I was not surprised, at all. Experiments done show this consistently, that when things you think are easy to differentiate audibly often are not when sight is removed from the equation, and it happens across the board.

    I also was not surprised that the eminent violinist WAS able to pick the instrument being played, and I suspect, had he heard more than a few snippets of each of you playing (and each violin playing), including rather complete and varied pieces in both style and difficulty, he could have much more readily picked out which of you was playing, as well. I suspect while he was training, if he heard some of his fellow students play often enough, he could even pick which one of many was playing while blindfolded with some reasonable confidence level and accuracy. He would do far better yet if he were given the chance to try to accomplish this repeatedly WHILE blindfolded, actually training up THAT specific skill. It has been demonstrated in experiments including highly trained and lesser trained, and even non-musicians, that the the highly trained musician's listening abilities are more highly tuned. I'm fairly sure that is a non-trivial component of their virtuosity in rendering music to our ears.

    The trend in "blind" auditioning for orchestra seats and the like is likely improving orchestras around the word. It certainly has made them more culturally diverse, as well it should. Look at Yuja Wang and Hiromi Uehara if you want just two supreme examples of immense talent from just one culture on just one instrument, the piano in those cases.

    Great stuff, thx.

  7. The "cheap" 1000 $ Violin sounds scratchier than the 10.000.000 dollar one. This has a deeper sound and sounds kind of rounder. Sorry I am not a native speaker, so I don't know how else I can express it. You hear a big difference for sure.

  8. Theres a difference in the projection in the notes and that's really all I can hear that's different the notes just sound brighter

  9. it's hard to hear much of a difference on iphone speakers. But yeah the sound from Brett's seemed less blended. The sound was similar to the tone of plastic strings on a guitar vs metal strings or gut strings. Eddie's sounded raspy and your guest violin seemed to have a well integrated sound. And like it was haunted by the souls of the violinists who played it. It just screams out the sound.

  10. So this felt like a comparison with Valentino Rossi driving my 150 CC bike, then moving on to a say a 500 CC sport bike, then showing us his 1000 CC super bike. No matter what, an great artist doesn't depend on his tools to show who he is.

  11. Let's be honest: any one of you three could make an old "fiddle" sound amazing!
    It really comes down to the violin you prefer! Naturally a really cheap instrument is one you'd not want anyway. In other words, you're all first class, and you can make any instrument sound wonderful if it's a violin you know well and love.

  12. Good grief, I wasn't sure at first how obvious it would be, but that $10 million violin is just bursting with overtones and harmonics like a little symphony of its own.

  13. So I actually haven't watched that much twoset, is Brett noticably better than Eddie? I can't really tell especially when they're laughing and nervous the entire time

  14. I can definitely hear the difference in pitch and, should I say, richness in tune of the 10 million $ violin. The 1000 $ violins sound great as well, but there is a clear difference for people with a good pitch. I do not count myself as a violin expert, as a singer, but I have a fairly decent pitch and I can tell that the 10 million $ violin has a richer tone to it. (I can hear a badly recorded violin note and hear if it's flat or not. I can also hear if a note played on an organ sounds flat. Not bragging, just giving a tad bit of background as to why I can hear clear difference between the violins)

  15. This same test would apply to guitarists with a variety of different guitars…..I've done it so many times it's unbelievable. If you can play, you will make any instrument sound as good as you are. If you suck, it won't matter how expensive the instrument. It's the player… the musician, the thought-processing, the translation as such through the fingers to the instrument. The only difference with guitars (electrics especially) would be the addition of effects that can mask bad playing, but never to the extent of making an amateur sound like a pro. It's the musician…. every time.

  16. The sound is not as rough on the $10M violin

    Idk thats just the way I phrased it in my brain that made more sense than "OMG it's smoother than a bed made of baby butts and kitten skin"

    God awful example but ta daaaa

  17. twoset just turn into little kids when they meet good violin players – their faces literally turned into eleven y/o me getting presents on christmas

  18. Pergunta Cretina…….. Pelé imortal o resto corre por 3 Copas do Mundo , CR 7 e Messi tem qualidades , jogadores de clubes e nada mais !

  19. I enjoyed this whole thing, but really smiled when it kind of briefly turned into a Harry Potter-esque wand/violin choosing ceremony.

  20. Brett and Eddy you introduced to me world of classical music. You two are the modern ambassador of classical music.
    And last but not the least everyone will be with me when I asks how you felt when your self esteem was shattered

  21. I dont know why, when I watch this video, I think the green cloth's man is the twin of raditya dika, (https://www.youtube.com/user/radityadika). You are so look alike with him.

  22. 12:33 my god….this caught me too off-guard.
    I'm sad that I can only replay that clip instead of watching him perform that since I can't find a video.

  23. I think you can kinda hear a diffrence, but it is kinda low key and the piece is still beautiful no matter the violin…

  24. It might be just me, but everything sounds the same haha. Yeah I can hear some difference when things are played back-to-back, but hearing each segment in isolation, I wouldn’t know what’s what.

  25. Did you guys see and hear Yu-Chien Tseng, winner of the Tchaikovsky competition, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7LRqvZUWMbg


  27. Even with just my cellphone speaker there's a difference. The $10 mil violin is a lot warmer and more resonant for sure. That's not to say you have to spend $10 million to get that sound, and there's definitely a lot in the player, I have heard guitarists make Wal-Mart children's guitars sound good. Most of instrument sound quality is personal and a lot.doesn't translate to a recording, like resonance and overtones missed by the mic but felt in the band of the player.

  28. Although the 'action' of the stings over the finger board as to height and tension will effect the sound, have to admit that it's the MUSICIAN that really adds to the value of the instrument.

  29. As you go down the road of your career, you will notice it's the JEW that owns it all, including YOU.
    Joe Magnets

  30. i saw an interview with Joshua Heifetz and he said he OVER PLAYS it pressing very hard on the strings with the bow, getting the sound to be as loud as it can be without cracking, but groaning as I hear him perform, as with most professionals, the violin is over worked, and constantly being 'adjusted'. If you ain't making money, you will soon be poor.

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