Appreciating the
High-End Violin Market.


Violin Market Index gathers up-to-date realized violin sales information, presenting it in a coherent style that allows collectors and investors to act with greater confidence.


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Making sense of the violin market

Understanding sales information of high-end instruments has always been a challenge. Without knowing the condition or history of an instrument, a sale price is meaningless. How do you compare a highly-restored Stradivari sold under desperate conditions, with the most desirable, healthy example acquired in a strong market? Can you understand the market by only looking at sale prices?

Levelling the playing field

The solution is very simple. By assessing each instrument and sale in comparison to a theoretical “perfect instrument sale,” a value is generated (VMI Score). This equalizes the variants and eliminates the need for qualifications. VMI compares and displays the data from completely different violin sales in several ways. While this does not create a narrative for the future, it provides a way to display reality as it happened, giving a truly accurate view of the market.


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Determining a violin's value and score

A VMI score is calculated based on 15 parameters that are weighted according to their relative impact to the instrument’s value. These parameters include assessments of physical condition, how the example stands in the maker’s body of work, its provenance, and the sale conditions.

VMI parameters
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Violin market data

The Market Data section contains several graphs, showing actual sales data from our contributing partners. The makers currently represented here are Antonio Stradivari, Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesu, and Giovanni Battista Guadagnini. Stradivari and Guarneri represent the pinnacle of violin making, and historically have commanded the very highest prices. Guadagnini was the most prolific and consistent maker of the second tier. Analyzing the sales of these three makers gives the clearest view of the trend in the high-end violin market.