A Comprehensive Ranking guide of the Best Accordion brands

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Accordion Brands

Renowned accordion brands

We have selected the 12 most popular legacy brand names of accordions that resonate well with accordionists of any skill level and age group. These brand names are known for their quality, craftsmanship and sound.

Accordion BrandCountry of ManufactureFounding Year
HOHNERGermany1857
VICTORIAItaly1919
WELTMEISTERGermany1852
PAOLO SOPRANIItaly 1863
BUGARIItaly1863/4
SCANDALLIItaly1900
PIGINIItaly 1946
BORSINIItaly1922
BELTUNAItaly1982
PETOSAItaly1922
EXCELSIORUnited States of America 1924
TITANOItaly1928

Know to which category these popular accordion brands belong. Borsini, Scandalli, Victoria and Beltuna advance from the used accordion market into the A class. Bugari, Petosa and the Excelsior are able to earn their way into the B set. The rest are still fine accordions considered to fall under a C class.

Accordion brand and its reputation

However, to make an objective judgement of quality and to assess rank requires independent authority which is a time-consuming and expensive effort. Though the sound of an instrument remains to be subjective, the technical quality of it can be objectively determined by repairers and foremen.

The psychological aspect also comes into play, as the brand and image can impact a musician’s satisfaction.

Ultimately, it will be understood in some matters of personal perception. Is this accordion easy to play, built with quality, sounds great and fits your kind of music and budget? Not really just about the numbers but a profound emotional attachment for some accordion players.

Brand name vs the model

The more important is the model, not the brand name. It happened twenty years ago when I was considering whether to buy Toyota Corolla or Toyota Camry. It seemed that they were so similar that they wholesale from the same plant. Then, what really matter in a name?

Moreover, there are some superb brands that excel in making instruments that befits certain kind of music compared to others where they fall short. However, personal preference really matters. For example, though the sound on classical music on a Pigini might not be my first preference, they have some special kind of bass mechanism that is fun playing.

Video courtesy of PIGINI accordions channel.

The most expensive accordion title goes to…Pigini!

Pigini accordions are widely recognized as the ones showcasing their exceptional craftsmanship and remarkable sound. While regular accordions typically consist of a hundred components a Pigini accordion can be made up of more, than 12,000 individual pieces.

Each of these parts is meticulously installed by hand reflecting a dedication to precision and excellence. This meticulous process means that skilled artisans only manage to complete, around 20 Pigini Nòva accordions in a year highlighting the exclusivity and unparalleled quality of each instrument.

Video courtesy of Business Insider

Interestingly, other Italian brands boast of using a common bass mechanism friend, rendering them virtually indistinguishable unless similar configuration and year of production. On the other hand, in terms of bass mechanism at play, I find the Russian one in my Hohner to be highly favorable.

On the other hand, Beltuna of course much brighter and softer than Borsini for lighter music. However, after being declared bankrupt, Borsini is no longer available in the market.

Based on its characteristic therefore Victoria is reputed by jazz lovers. In this case, to reach that authentic French sound it is perhaps better to buy from specialist firms, rather than relying on the main brands Bugari and Pigini.

Looking carefully at pictures of French accordions, there seems to be a particular technique that goes into making that distinctive French sound.

Ultimately, the most critical factor for the bulk of people that intend to buy a new accordion is access through a local dealer. Locally available accordions therefore hugely reduce the options significantly to a fraction of what is produced globally.

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