We know that purchasing a cello online takes an incredible amount of trust, knowledge, and information. Therefore, we go the extra mile to make sure that you have as much information about your future cello soulmate as we can possibly provide.
First, a little bit about us. We are not a big retailer. We are a very small family business with a small, private showroom in Santa Barbara, California. We provide the same services as most string shops; instrument and bow repairs, bow rehairs, rentals, and sales.
All of the cellos on our website are setup and playable, displayed in our showroom. We have carefully gone over every cello, providing each one with an individualized, professional setup that only a shop specializing in cellos can do. Linda West is very knowledgable in proper, professional cello setup, string selection, and the correction and taming of wolf tones, so you can rest assured that any of the cellos that you are considering has had thorough attention by her. She considers them all 'her children'.
We take our own photos out under the loquat tree in our yard because we have found natural light shows off the depth of the varnish and wood grain better than artificial light.
Our goal is to have sound bytes up as quickly as we can for the 7/8 & 4/4 cellos. If a cello that you are interested in doesn't have a sound byte, reach out to us to find out when that can be expected online.
If you need help deciding which cello would be best for you, we are more than happy to have as many conversations as necessary to help you find your soulmate. You can always reach out to us using the orange 'Chat Now' button on our website, or email us using the Contact Us page. Someone will usually reply pretty quickly (as long as it's not the middle of the night here!) If you prefer talking on the phone, be sure to include your phone number when you contact us and we'll give you a call.
Most of our cellos will come with a bow. Depending on the price level of the cello, you will have the choice of a brasilwood bow or composite, or a nice pernambuco or carbon fiber bow. Once you have decided on a cello, Linda will play your cello, going through a number of bows to find the most compatible. If you don't know whether to get composite or wood, and want us to choose the most compatible, just let us know. Typically, Anne (Linda's sister) will give you a call when you order to discuss things like case color options, bow options, and other things you may want to consider depending on where you live (such as Boveda humidity kits or geared pegs.)
Our standard hard case is usually an Otto Musica 508W or 518W, or an Eastman Z-tek. It really depends on what we have in stock, what colors are available, and what your cello will fit best into.
If you are new to cello and have really no idea where to start, please ask for assistance and we will guide you. If you have any sort of special needs, such as physical limitations, please let us know that too as we might have some ideas that will make your cello choice easier/better for you.
Cellos that need to be shipped require a case for safe shipping. Most all of the cellos we have listed include a case in the price; however, some of the instruments that we carry on consignment do not come with a case, so a case would have to be purchased from us for shipping.
Almost all cello purchases (see our FAQs for exceptions) come with a 14-day trial period. If, for some reason, during those 2 weeks you are not thrilled with your new cello, please contact us to discuss a return or replacement.
We hope this helps you understand the process and that we are really here to help you. Please feel free to reach out and ask for assistance; we love helping you!