The musical instrument collection largely consists of musical instruments that were manufactured in Upper Austria or were a part of Upper
Austrian musical life.
The collection dates back to a donation by the Kremsmünster monastery. In 1836 the monastery donated 46 lute, string and woodwind instruments from its own inventory. The museum was thus already exhibiting a collection of historic musical instruments within three years of its founding. It grew to its current size through occasional donations and purchases.
In 1843 Johann, brother of Ludwig van Beethoven, gave the museum an Érard fortepiano formerly owned by the composer.
The collection currently includes 300 objects with a focus on important woodwind instruments. An Érard fortepiano formerly owned by Ludwig van Beethoven stands alone in the collection. The priority aim of the collection is all of the categories of musical instruments from Upper Austrian manufacture and/or Upper Austrian musical life.
The musical instrument collection provides support to musicologists, organologists, musicians, students and instrument manufacturers. Instruments serve instrument makers as templates for replication. Besides musical instruments are catalogued which are often inquired about.