Legendary Stradivarius violins may have built up a lot of mystique over the years and are now worth millions, but a Michigan-based instrument maker has debunked the myth that it's because they sound so much better. In blind tests of 12 violins -- six older models and six brand new -- researchers found that the world's top soloists prefer newer versions, with old models ranking lower. "The idea that you can't make a better sound than a Strad has been a pervasive one, and it doesn't really rest on anything except people saying it," said study researcher Joseph Curtin.

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