Saving the sound of the Stradivarius


An interesting project is taking place in Cremona Italy. A link to a brief piece in the New York Times describes the effort to chronicle the sound of various Stradivarius instruments before they have lost their mojo.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/17/arts/music/stradivarius-sound-bank-recording-cremona.html?action=...

ghasley
They are not the first.   Quite a number of years ago I worked for a company that was going through a transition and decided to create the sound of a Stradivarius through a new design of music synthesizer integrated circuits.

Being an audiophile and an electrical engineer, I had to chuckle to myself.  Only the most arrogant group of engineers who know nothing about the quality of sound or even know how to play a stringed instrument, would try to make a synthesizer create the sound of a Stradivarius.  

I left the company and in a few years the company folded, never completing the project.    I am sure they are not the only ones who have tried.  At least this approach has a lot of merit. 
What makes anybody think these Strads are gonna loose their mojo? They're already hundreds of years old and, unlike vintage Les Pauls and Stratocasters, they get repaired if need be. I noticed a beautiful old Stratocaster in an add once that was more valuable because it was untouched from original, even though it didn't actually work. The only thing that seems to effect the tone of a Strad or any other fine wood acoustic instrument is not playing it...there's a Strad in Cremona at a museum that is played for 15 minutes of so every day for that exact reason, a fact I recently learned from Richard Hoover of Santa Cruz guitars. 
@wolf_garcia 
If you read the article, even the conservators believe the instruments will be too delicate to play, despite being cared for. 
Bob
Thats simply nonsense...Strads get dragged all over the world and fixed if need be, and are very unlikely to be abused to the degree that they’ll ever become dust or too delicate to play...like I said, the ones in use get maintenance or they wouldn't be usable...Yo Yo's cello...lots and lots of playing time, no problemo.
Dave Edmunds was taking his original 1958 dot-neck Gibson ES335's (one blonde, one black) on the road until someone told him how much they were worth. Too easy to get stolen. Yo Yo buys a second ticket for the seat next to him on plane flights, for his cello. 
It's just wood, joinery and glue.
With time, even wood will degrade.  And, when factoring the stress of playing it, I have no doubt it will eventually not withstand the forces of time.
What I would do is create replicas based on highly defined computer imaging. A great woodworker should be able to replicate it.
If fortepiano's can be reconstructed, why not these?
B
Sting instruments must be played or they go bad.  Joe Grado (the original owner) tried to made a plastic violin using Bell Labs laser to "perfect" the proper resonance...the project was put on hold after awhile.  I played a Strad......its major asset (there are many) was its ability to play to the balcony of the hall.  My favorite violin is Guarneri. Trying to replicate the Strad sound is impossible .....they sound different with different bows.
Wood can be maintained to last forever, and nobody knows why Strads sound so good, with many theories out there...why does a 1939 Martin often sound so much better than new one? It will if it's played, and nobody knows what a Strad sounded like when new...likely pretty good, and later simply great.

Thank you for the interesting article!