Hupfeld Phonoliszt-Violina Model B Music Cabinet For Sale
Want more images?
Request additional images from the seller
1 of 6 images

Hupfeld Phonoliszt-Violina Model B Music Cabinet


This incredible Hupfeld Phonoliszt-Violina Model B music cabinet is among the rarest and most advanced automatic music players of its time. The remarkable machine, crafted by renowned Leipzig firm of Ludwig Hupfeld, is one of the most mechanically complex music players ever made, boasting three self-playing violins accompanied by a self-playing piano. Once made in the 1000s to entertain patrons of upscale hotels, restaurants, and cafes, these extraordinary machines have become increasingly rare, and only 63 still exist today. A large step above the popular mechanical piano of the day, the Phonoliszt-Violina was quite expensive to produce, and therefore was only available to the most exclusive clientele. The need for its expense is evident when considering the astonishing complexity of the instrument. Three violins playing strings tuned to D, A and E are bowed by a circular 1,350-strand horsehair bow cage, while a cross-strung Rönisch pianoforte accompanies the strings. Remarkably, both the piano and the violins are dynamic, allowing for a previously unheard of range of volume and tone. From the most delicate pianissimo to a crashing fortissimo, this unparalleled instrument has the ability to render musical pieces with all of the skill and vigor of a real musician. Over 900 rolls of music were created for the Phonoliszt-Violina over the decades, of which 50 rolls are included with the present machine. The firm of Ludwig Hupfeld was established in Leipzig in 1892, when Ludwig Hupfeld, an accomplished musician, mechanic and businessman, acquired the musical instrument manufacturers J.M. Grob & Co. The firm quickly rose in popularity as its mechanical instruments grew more and more complex - products made by the firm included various piano-playing machine and orchestrions. The idea of creating an automatic violin came to Hupfeld in 1900 and by 1907 the firm displayed the “Klavier mit Streichton,” or piano with string tone, at the Leipzig Autumn Trade Fair. At the Brussels World’s Fair of 1910, a Photoliszt Violina was received with great acclaim and earned a medal and renowned violinist Ephrem Zimbalist called the instrument “the wonder and marvel of our time."


  • In the Style Of
  • Place of Origin
  • Date of Manufacture
    circa 1910
  • Dimensions
    H 106 in. x W 75 in. x D 32 in.H 269.24 cm x W 190.5 cm x D 81.28 cm
  • Seller Location
    New Orleans, LA
  • Seller Reference Number
  • Reference Number
Buyer Protection Guaranteed
Our Promise To You: If you're not happy with the way an item arrived, we'll work with you and the seller to reach an optimal resolution. Read more

Shipping, Returns & Payment

  • Shipping
    Rates vary by destination and complexity

    Some items may require special handling and packaging. Request a shipping quote to see what options are available to your destination.

  • Return Policy

    This item cannot be returned.

    View details
  • Online Payment Methods
    1stdibs accepts the following payment methods
  • Item Invoice
    Generate an invoice that you can customize and print.

About the Seller

5 / 5
1stdibs seller since 2010
Located in New Orleans, LA
You may also contact the seller by phoneCall seller through 1stdibs
More From This Seller
Regina Upright Music Box

Regina Upright Music Box

By Regina Company
Regina Upright Music Box
Regina Company
Antique 19th Century American Other Musical Instruments
An extraordinary and rare coin-operated Regina Sublima upright music box crafted by the Regina music box company, one of the most recognized music box manufacturers in the world, com...
Mandolin Singing Bird Automaton Music Box
Mandolin Singing Bird Automaton Music Box
Antique 19th Century European Other Decorative Boxes
This exceptional singing bird cylinder music box is a wonder of Austrian mechanical ingenuity. Not only does it play a selection of classical airs with remarkable tone and clarity, b...
B. A. Bremond of Geneva 18th Century Music Box

B. A. Bremond of Geneva 18th Century Music Box

By Baptiste-Antoine Brémond
B. A. Bremond of Geneva 18th Century Music Box
Baptiste-Antoine Brémond
Antique 19th Century Swiss Other Musical Instruments
Ebony, Walnut
This music box manufactured by Brémond, one of the most respected and talented makers of the era, demonstrates not just beauty and technical excellence, but sheer musical mastery. Th...
Interchangable Cylinder Music Box
Interchangable Cylinder Music Box
Antique 19th Century Swiss Victorian Musical Instruments
Brass, Mother-of-Pearl, Satinwood, Walnut
This captivating and exceptionally engineered Swiss interchangable cylinder music box is accompanied by its original table. The mechanism is set in a beautiful case of burled and ebo...

Why Shop on 1stdibs?

Learn More

Only Vetted, Professional Sellers

Buyer Protection Guaranteed

Fully Insured Global Deliveries