A violin that is not tuned to a G major scale costs approximately 50% more than a viola tuned to G major (which means that you need to pay $15,000 for a violin that will cost $25,000 to tune to G-major). The same guitar will cost $20,000 to tune on its own, but a violin will cost around twice as much (with a cost increase of approximately 5% – so we are talking about at least 200% more than a guitar!).
So, you can imagine my surprise when I found a piano that would cost over $120k to tune with a single string, and the same piano would only cost $50k to tune to Bb (so around 40% less for the violin) even though it would be tuned to another scale. The violin and piano would cost over $2million to tune, which might be enough to drive you crazy, but it might not be as much as $2million just for a piano and maybe $5m to tune a pianist.
But there’s one huge thing that you might not know about pricing.
In the US, in order to compete in the world marketplace, an instrumentmaker has to charge over 20-30% more than their competitors. For instance, if you are an instrument maker and wanted to increase your sales by 25% and you wanted to make 10 instruments, you would pay over $1,000 for 10 of them, because the average price of each 10 would be at least $1,000, but the average price of an instrument made by the 10 most popular instrument makers would be less than $600. Thus, the more, the merrier, which is why an instrument that can sell for over $1,000 would be more important than one that can sell for a fraction of that price.
What are the reasons for the high price point?
I am guessing that a reason for high pricing is that the value of an instrument might not be obvious to all potential customers. If a business uses a simple price point and they don’t want to have “too many” instruments, that simply makes a price point pointless.
However, perhaps we could use instrument-specific price points, like the price points on electric pianos or on guitars.
Perhaps there are some products that are more expensive than other products, and this could be a product-specific cost. How do we calculate such a “comparison”?
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