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The Eric Clapton Guitar Tab Book
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This instrument or product has been carefully played/used and returned to us in
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This instrument or product is in good working condition but has one or more cosmetic
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applies to this used product.
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Bellafina Model 50 Cello OutfitThe Bellafina Model 50 Cello Outfit is built in the Ren Wei Shi workshops from seasoned tonewoods chosen primarily for their sound quality and secondarily for appearance (less prominent flaming). This permits building a cello that sounds and plays like one many times more expensive. But the Bellafina Model 50 Cello remains affordable to nearly all serious cellists of any age. Bag and brazilwood horsehair bow included.
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Overall GOOD impression (see separate review for positive details) but BAD first impression -- required professional expense and modification before we could even tell whether we liked it or not. Glad it was shipped to me (the teacher) instead of straight to the student, because student/parents wouldn't have known what to do. Completely unplayable out-of-the-box -- had been shipped with the soundpost and bridge down, so professional setup by a luthier was required before instrument could even be safely tuned. Even then it was functionally unplayable, because the bridge was SO tall that I could barely close the strings against the fingerboard, and was unable to evaluate anything beyond the tone of the open strings. I had to authorize the luthier to cut the bridge down significantly in order for string height to be comfortable. But THEN we had a cello to fall in love with!
(Note: Luthier confirmed that the soundpost had been competently pre-fitted to the instrument before shipping, and just needed to be stood back up and put in place by somebody with the proper tools and expertise. Bridge *looked* like it had been fitted -- feet were shaped, top was curved and had string notches -- but action was impossibly high.)
I ordered this cello for an advancing student who desperately needed to move up from a stuffy plywood instrument. Said student came to last night's lesson and said he'd been practicing at least twice as much as usual for the past week, because it was just so much fun to play this cello. SUCCESS!
After a lot of up-front hassle (see previous review) and less-than-impressive first sounds, I replaced all the as-shipped strings with ?known quantities? out of my used-strings stash: Prim C and G, Larsen Soloist D, and Jargar Medium A. The result was very satisfying, with plenty of volume and body, rich and meaty in the low range, warm and clear in the high range, and a polished sweetness throughout. Can be just a little balky at extreme soft dynamics, but that may yet improve as the instrument gets "played in" -- the response has already opened up noticeably in just a week of regular playing.
And the wood is absolutely gorgeous! The website photos don't begin to do it justice. The back and ribs have dramatic iridescent flaming, and the top has lovely grain with attractively-shaded varnish. The first time he saw it, my student's awestruck reaction was "I'll never be embarrassed for anybody to see THIS cello!"
The outfit's bow and bag are acceptable, though not as unexpectedly nice as the cello. I'll be encouraging a hard case as the next investment, then maybe a Codabow Diamond NX or equivalent pernambuco bow.
FWIW, In my past cello-shopping experiences, I would have expected to pay at least $2000 for an instrument like this, with such an attractive appearance and powerful-yet-refined tone, not including bow or case. I don't think anyone would guess from looking at, listening to, or playing this cello, that the entire outfit (cello, bow, bag) , upgraded strings (even if purchased new), and the necessary luthier services (initial setup and bridge adjustment).
(Note: The OEM strings weren't a complete waste -- although unacceptably snarly and metallic-sounding on the Model 50, they actually improved the tone of the plywood cello, giving it more presence and projection.)
* Price guarantee valid on all new in-stock merchandise sold by an authorized U.S. Dealer. Guarantee does not apply to discontinued, blemished, damaged, closeout, open box, refurbished or auction items. You will be contacted via email shortly after submission of request.