Stradivarius violins are flat


The legend of the famous stringed-instrument maker has gone slightly out of tune. Stradivarius’ violins were tested in a double-blind experiment, and appealed less to the public than recent instruments. In New York and Paris, 137 listeners had to compare nine pairs of violins—each pair consisting of an old and a new instrument— in terms of the quality and projection of their sound, i.e. their capacity to fill a room with it, and rise above an orchestra.