We are often asked by parents – “why should I pay $300 - $500 for a violin when violins for under $200 are readily available on many websites”? This is a fair question and requires some education about the importance of using properly seasoned wood, one of the primary reasons for warpage and structural problems that can render a violin unplayable, and the importance of proper instrument set-up. Proper instrument set-up and the time/cost associated with setting up an instrument correctly is one of the least understood aspects of starting a student on a string instrument. Proper set up is crucial in helping students excel in their musical efforts. When a violin is properly set up it will have the following features. 1. Pegs that turns easily and do not slip 2. A fingerboard that has been planed and has the proper relief for proper playability and intonation 3. A nut that is fit properly and allows for the proper string height and spacing 4. A bridge that is properly fitted for proper string height from the fingerboard and for transferring the vibration of the strings into the body of the instrument. The arch of the bridge is also important to prevent the bow from hitting two strings at the same time 5. A soundpost that is fitted correctly inside the violin and is in the right position to maximize the proper sound of the instrument 6. Fine tuners on the tailpiece that turn easily allowing for micro tuning adjustment 7. Quality strings that produce an acceptable tone (not just different thicknesses of wire!) The problem with an improperly set up violin is that often the improperly fitted, pegs, nut, bridge and soundpost will need to be replaced not re-worked. The cost of properly setting up a violin varies but most Shops with trained luthiers on staff will charge between $200.00 - $400.00 to properly address the seven set-up issues addressed above. The wide variance in price is due to the difference in severity of the problem, i.e. does the fingerboard require 15 minutes of work or 90?