AbstractThe aim of this study was to assess wood quality using diagnostic keys related to the main traits of trunk architecture in the most important resource of resonance spruce of the Romanian Carpathians. The material sampled from standing and felled trees yielded 568 individual ring series adding up to over 81,000 growth rings. The resonance xylotype was first recognized in felled trees, already designated for violin manufacture, for which a 6-class quality classification system was proposed. This system was extended to the qualitative classification of the standing trees (diameter at breast height larger than 10 cm). The width and regularity of the growth rings, the width of the sapwood and latewood, and the compression wood ratio are the variables that make recognition of trees containing resonance wood possible. Wood with resonance structural value was detected locally along the tree stem, and the best resonance structural quality was found uniformly distributed from 5 to 9 m above the ground and in the external half of the cross-section. Trees having a proper structure for violin fliches, but not yet with an appropriate size (38 cm underbark diameter), accounted for about 7% of the total tree population.