Have you always wanted to play the violin? Perhaps you are already a violinist, but you want to get a new instrument and don’t know which to choose. Maybe you are buying a violin as a gift for someone. This is a remarkable, iconic instrument that has a distinctive sound and has been used to create some of the most beautiful music in the world. It’s no wonder that you want to play the violin.
However, when you start to look at the various options that are available on the market, you will quickly see that there are many different violins, all of which are vying for your attention. With all of those choices, it can be difficult to know which the best violins are for your skill level and needs.
Fortunately, we have helped to make things somewhat easier for you. Below, you will find information on what we believe are the best violins available today. Also, we will provide more information for you about how you can learn to play the violin, and how to care for the instrument once you have it.
Best Violin Brands: Reviews & Comparisons
|Bunnel Premier Violin Outfit||
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|Stentor, 4-String Violin 1550||
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|Mendini MV500+92D ||
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|Bunnel Pupil Violin||
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|Bunnel Edge Electric Violin||
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|Vangoa Acoustic Violin||
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Bunnel Premier Violin Outfit
Kennedy Violins offers the Bunnel Premier Violin Outfit, which comes with more than just the violin. This is a popular violin option to consider, and it is an upgrade to the Bunnel Pupil violin, which is considered a student violin and is detailed below. This proves to be a good violin for a range of reasons. It is made from high-quality solid maple along with tight-grained spruce that comes from the Himalayas. The violin features a custom-fit maple bridge and beautiful ebony fittings that include a polished fingerboard and pegs.
The violin sounds beautiful and it looks just as good. Whether you are looking for violins for beginners, or you are looking for an upgrade to your violin, this is a good violin to consider. It’s made well, and it can provide you with many years of use when you care for it properly.
The violin is ready to play when it arrives. It features an authentic, hand-rubbed oil finish that looks professional. From the sound to the fittings and everything in between, there are many reasons to consider this as one of the best violin options on the market today.
In addition to having a great violin, when you buy the full outfit, it comes bundled with a range of accessories. These include a Portland carbon fiber shoulder rest, a KV clip-on tuner, and extra set of strings, Giuliani rosin, a Giuliani Brazilwood bow, and a polishing cloth.
One of the other benefits of choosing this violin is the fact that it includes a quality Portland Oblong carrying case. This will help to keep the violin protected when you are storing it and when you travel. The case even includes a hygrometer for measuring the humidity. It is a plush case that is spacious enough to hold the accessories you need including the shoulder rest, strings, rosin, straps, and more.
The aforementioned shoulder rest from Portland features reinforced internals, which helps it to keep its shape. It has been specially formulated to ensure there is no slippage, as well. You will be able to choose from several different sizes when you opt for the Bunnel Premier including options for children, as well as a full-size option for adults.
Stentor, 4-String Violin 1550
If you are looking for a quality violin that looks and sounds great, you may want to consider the Stentor 1550. The 1550 is similar to the 1400 model from Stentor, but it offers some important improvements.
This is a handcrafted violin that’s made from solid tonewoods. It features a fine-grained spruce top along with a solid maple back. The violin also has an ebony fingerboard and full ebony fittings. The colors of the wood, the reddish-brown and black, along with the shiny clear finish make for a truly beautiful violin that should please just about everyone. The violin features inlaid purfling, has a hardwood chin rest, high-quality strings, and an alloy tailpiece that has four string adjusters, along with a nylon tailpiece loop.
The violin comes with a full mounted wood horsehair bow, as well as a deluxe oblong case with an instrument blanket and shoulder rest compartment. The violin can work well for those who are looking for an upgrade to their current violin, as well a for those who are just playing the violin now for the first time. It is a good violin to consider.
Mendini is a popular violin brand, and the MV500+92D shows why that’s the case. The violin is available in several different sizes, including the full 4/4. The high-quality violin features a solid hand-carved single-piece maple back, neck and side. Also, it has a solid hand-carved spruce top. You will enjoy the beautiful finish on the violin, which really helps to set it apart. It also features inlaid purfling.
The sound of the violin is impressive. It offers a deep and rich tone that you will enjoy. Those who already have a violin for beginners will find that this can be a nice step up from their student violin.
You will also appreciate the ebony fingerboard, along with the ebony pes, chin rest, and tailpiece, which has four detachable tuners. The violin is lightweight, it sounds impressive, and it looks beautiful. This set comes with a range of other accessories and features. You will find a high-quality chromatic string tuner that also features a metronome, for example.
The set also comes with two Brazilwood bows that have unbleached genuine Mongolian horsehair. There is also an included adjustable shoulder rest, two bridges, a rosin cake, and an extra set of violin strings. An additional feature of this set that you are sure to appreciate is the hard case. The case is padded, providing a safe place for your violin to be kept. The case also features room for accessories, such as the bows.
Bunnel Pupil Violin
Those who are looking for a violin for beginners will appreciate the Bunnel Pupil Violin. This violin, along with the accessories, is available in a wide range of different sizes. This is an ideal option for a student violin, as it is affordable and still high-quality. Also, it comes entirely set up and ready to play when it arrives. The final setup and assembly are performed by professional luthiers before it is shipped. All of the handcrafted violins are made with solid spruce and solid maple tonewoods. You will also receive 100% genuine ebony fittings. The violins have a satin oil finish before they are sent out, as well.
The violin has four professional-level built-in fine tuners on a composite tailpiece. The inlaid purfling, the finish, and the overall design of the violin help to make it a great student violin that looks like a professional. In addition to the violin, this setup comes with other accessories you will appreciate. You will receive a high-quality case that includes room for the violin, as well as two bows, and other accessories, such as strings, rosin, and straps. The student violin set also features a Giuliani bow that is pre-rosined and ready to play.
The Cecilio CVNAE is the first acoustic/electric violin on the list. You will find that the violin is made of maple and spruce, and it is available in several different color options. You can choose from Pearl White, Antique Varnish, or Metallic Black. Each of these provides aesthetic style and beauty, and they all look great. The violin features volume and tone control, ebony pegs, ebony chinrest, and ebony chin rest and tailpiece. The tailpiece has four nickel-plated fine tuners.
The violin also comes with a Brazilwood bow that features unbleached genuine Mongolian horsehair. Also, it includes a case, which has room for supplied and accessories such as the included rosin, violin bridge, and more. You can choose from a wide range of sizes from this violin brand. It’s a good option for those who are just starting and who want student violins that can be used until they are at a more advanced level.
Cecilio is a popular violin brand, and the CVN-300 proves why. This could make for one of the best beginner violins, and it is available in several different sizes. The violin features a solid spruce top, a maple back, and inlaid purfling. You will also appreciate the beautiful antique varnish on the violin, which provides it with a beautiful appearance.
The violin features ebony pegs, an ebony chinrest, an ebony tailpiece, and four detachable nickel-plated fine tuners. There is also an ebony fingerboard. The violin is strung using D’Addario Prelude strings. The setup comes with a range of additional features, including a chromatic tuner, a lightweight hard case, two Brazilwood bows with unbleached Mongolian horsehair, a rosin cake, an extra bridge, and an adjustable shoulder rest. It also features a lesson book to help those who are just getting started with a beginner violin.
The Cecilio CVEN-2BK is another interesting violin from one of the best-known violin brands. It is an electric/silent violin that features ebony fittings. This violin sounds great and has one of the most interesting looking designs you will find. While it has the same basic appearance as a violin and all of the same parts that are needed, the design has a decidedly futuristic look to it. This violin is also available in a range of different colors. You can choose black, or you could opt for one of the other colors like blue, yellow, mahogany, or white. All of the colors look great, and they all sound great, so choose the color that you like the best.
The violin has a hand-carved solid maple wood body with an ebony fingerboard, pegs, chin rest, and tailpiece. There is also a beautiful mother of pearl inlay. The violin offers style and performance. You can hook it up to just about any guitar amp or PA system, with the include 1/4 to 1/8 cable that is included. You can change the volume, you can use the headphone jack for practice, and even use the line-in jack to have a backing track with which to play.
This violin is one of the most modern options on the list in terms of technology and how you will be able to use it. It can work well as a beginner and an intermediate violin. This set comes with several different types of accessories. You will also receive a lightweight hard case, a bow, bridge, pickup, aux cable, headphones, and a bow. This is not only one of the best beginner violins, but it works well for just about all violinists.
The violin is available in many sizes, and it could be a great option for those who want to get into the violin and who want an electric option. From the affordable price to the quality, it’s a good option.
Bunnel Edge Electric Violin
Another option for those who are seeking an electric violin is the Bunnel Edge from Kennedy Violins. This is another popular violin maker and this violin helps to show why. Those who are looking for an interesting design will find that this violin is made with both functionality and aesthetics in mind. You can choose from several colors with this violin including Rockstar Red, Bombshell Blue, and Jet Black.
The violin makers are some of the best known and respected in the business, and you can put your trust in the violins that they are offering. This violin comes with a piezoceramic pick-up, a Giuliana Brazilwood bow, D’Addario Prelude Strings, and Kennedy Violins rosin. It also features over the ear headphones and a Portland Oblong carrying case. The violin has a 9-volt battery power supply, a 1/4” output cable, and a standard 3.5 mm headphone jack.
The violin is made well, and care is taken to set up the violin properly for you before it is shipped. The musical instrument is a pleasure to play and to look at, and it could be the ideal new violin for you.
Vangoa Acoustic Violin
The Vangoa acoustic violin is a beautiful musical instrument that offers an affordable price for a new violin for beginners. The violin has a spruce top that can provide you with a resonant and dense sound. It features maple backs and sides, along with ebony fittings. The ebony fingerboard is nice and dense, so it can stand up to a lot of practice and playing without wearing down. This has the look and feel of a high-quality full-size violin.
The violin also has a beautifully varnished body, and it comes with a Brazilwood bow with unbleached horsehair, which helps to produce a lovely sound. This is a good option when trying to choose one of the best violins for beginners thanks to all of the accessories that it includes. You will receive a lightweight hard case, along with a shoulder rest, rosin, extra strings, a self-adhesive pickup, and a tuner.
From the excellent sound to being in an affordable price range, there are many elements to enjoy with this student violin.
The violin is available in several sizes, and it features a spruce wood panel, maple backboard and side plate, along with an antique finish that gives it a traditional, classic look. The fingerboard is inlaid with muscovite fingerboard points, which helps this to be a good beginner violin, as it will allow violin students to quickly and easily find their position. This is a beginner violin, so those who have a bit more experience, or who want to have a violin that can grow with them to higher levels might want to consider choosing an intermediate violin.
The neck is made from maple, while the fingerboard is made from pear. The chin rest is made from date wood. You will also find an aluminum alloy strain plate and four integrated fine-tuning tuners. The tuning knob is made from high-quality wood.
In addition to the design of the violin, the accessories that come with it also help to make it a great beginner violin. These accessories include a Mongolian horsehair bow, rosin, two violin bridges, extra strings, and a shoulder rest.
The Sky is a beautiful, black violin that has a wonderful aesthetic that many people are sure to appreciate. It is a good option for those who are searching for a violin for beginners and it has an affordable price to match. The violin is oil varnished with purfling that helps to make it a true standout from a visual perspective. In addition to black, several other colors are available. You could also choose from natural, bronze, and red.
All of them look great and all of them sound great. The maple violin has an aluminum tailpiece with four fine tuners, and you will find that it has a very nice sound. This is more for a beginner than an intermediate violin student, but it could still be used by those who have been playing for some time.
Also, the violin comes with a lightweight case that has a rainproof canvas exterior. It comes with a Brazilwood violin bow, high-quality strings, a shoulder rest, rosin, and a rubber practice mute.
The Benefits of Learning to Play the Violin
Learning to play a musical instrument like the violin can provide you with a wide range of benefits. It can help you to improve your attention span and improve your overall mental health. Learning and playing can help you relax. It can serve as a nice outlet for creativity and expression, you can record your music, learn to play with others, and much more. Of course, playing the violin is also fun. The learning process can be just as fun. Even though there might be a learning curve when you are getting started, don’t let that keep you from getting a good violin.
Some Important Violin Terminology to Learn
While you don’t need to become a violin expert before you ever pick up an instrument to play, you will find that having some basic knowledge of the terminology of violins will be helpful. You will understand what people are talking about when they say they want an ebony fingerboard, or when they are talking about the frog. Below is a list of some of the most common violin terminology and their definition.
- Scroll – The top part of the violin, at the very top of the neck is a scroll, which is often carved into a spherical shape of some sort. It could have other styles and designs, as well. It is purely decorative and will not affect the sound of the violin.
- Pegs and Pegbox – Beneath the scrolling, you will find the pegbox. This is where the pegs will be placed. The pegs are used to tune the violin. There are four strings on a violin, so there will be four peg holes in the pegbox. By turning the pegs, you will loosen or tighten the strings. You will need to do this when tuning and when changing strings.
- Neck – This is the long portion of wood that attaches to the body of the violin. It helps to support the strings and hold much of their tension.
- Fingerboard – The fingerboard is placed on top of the next. It will generally have a smooth surface, and it will not have frets like a guitar. The fingerboard is glued to the neck.
- Body – The largest part of the violin is the body. It will be made of wood and will feature a top plate, and a bottom plate. The top plate is sometimes called a belly, while the bottom plate is sometimes called the back.
- Nut – The nut will connect the pegboard to the fingerboard. It will help to control the string height, so they do not touch the fingerboard. The nut also has grooves in it, which help to ensure that the strings are spaced properly.
- F-Holes – On most violins, you will find two openings on the body. These are called F-holes or sound holes. They help to project the soundwaves out of the violin.
- Strings – A violin will have four strings that stretch from the pegbox to the tailpiece of the musical instrument. The strings can be made from a range of materials including catgut and steel. There are many types of strings available including Prelude strings from D’Addario.
- Bridge – The bridge will be located near the middle of the violin between the F-Holes. In some cases, the bridge will be set up when you receive the violin. However, you may need to install the bridge yourself.
- Sound Post – Inside of the violin’s body, just under where the bridge should go, is the sound post. This provides support for the violin’s body.
- Chin Rest – Those who are playing the violin will often rest their chin on the instrument to help provide support. The chin rest, which can be made from plastic or wood, helps to provide a comfortable location for the chin.
- Tailpiece – Located at the bottom of the instrument, this is where the strings connect and secure to the instrument before they are brought up through the pegboard.
- Fine Tuners – These are located at the tailpiece and they will help to provide fine-tuning for the musical instrument
- The Bow – The bow is used to play the violin. It is a wooden stick that has a bow hair attached to it. In some cases, this is real horsehair, and other times it is synthetic. The frog is the heel part of the bow where the violinist will hold it. There is a screw located at the end of the frog that is used to tighten the hair.
These are the basic anatomical parts of a violin. Knowing and understanding what these are will help you when you are looking for the best violin.
Important Things to Consider When Choosing the Best Violins
When you are choosing a new violin, you want to make sure that you are spending your money wisely. Namely, you want to make sure that you are getting an instrument that is going to work well for your needs. Are you looking for the best beginner violin or do you also want a violin that can grow with you? What types of features does the violin offer? What type of wood is used in the construction of the violin? Does it have the accessories you need?
Even though violins might have a similar look, the build quality can vary from one to the next. Always make sure you are choosing the right violin that has the features you need and that is still in your price range.
Tips for Learning the Violin
The violin can seem intimidating, even for those who have played other stringed instruments in the past. One of the first things that you will notice is that the violin does not have frets, which can make it more difficult for some people to know exactly where to find the various notes. Don’t worry; with a little bit of time and practice, you will be able to understand where to find all of the notes you are going to needs. It’s easier than you might think once you understand the tuning of your violin.
How should you learn to play, though? One of the first things you will want to do is consider getting instruction in person. Having an instructor can make it easier for you to make sure that you are holding the violin and using the bow correctly. However, there are other ways to learn, as well. You could always look online to find videos that can provide you with quality instructions and tutorials on how to play different songs. There are also books that you can use to learn more about the violin and how to play.
The violin takes some time to learn, but the journey is fun, and the result is well worth it. Once you can play your first song or two, you will be hooked.
How to Measure to Get the Right Size Violin
When you are choosing a violin, you want to make sure that you are getting the correct size for the violinist. Taking measurements is quite simple. You will extend your arm fully and hold it perpendicular to the body. Then, measure from the base of the net to the middle of your palm. How many inches is it? Keep this number in mind and consult the following list.
- Violin Size 1/16 = Arm Length 14” to 15”
- Violin Size 1/10 = Arm Length 15” to 16”
- Violin Size 1/8 = Arm Length 16” to 18”
- Violin Size 1/4 = Arm Length 18” to 20”
- Violin Size 1/2 = Arm Length 20” to 22”
- Violin Size 3/4 = Arm Length 22” to 23”
- Violin Size 4/4 = Arm Length 23” and up
Violins that are sized 4/4 are considered to be full-size violins. This is the most common option for most adults, but the size that you should be using will ultimately be determined by your measured arm length, not your age.
Tips for Setting Up the Violin and the Bow
Some of the available violins will come ready to play, or just about ready for you to start playing. However, many of them will need to have a little bit of setup before you can start playing the violin. It is important to have a basic understanding of what this will take. Don’t worry, it’s quite easy. In addition to the tips here, you will also want to make sure you follow the instructions that come from the violin brand that made your violin.
In many cases, you will need to set up the bridge on your violin. The bridge is essential for helping to transmit the sound of the violin. When you place the bridge, the tension of the strings at the top of the violin help to keep it firmly in place. Some instruments will have the bridge glued to them, but with many violins, you will not have a set bridge. If that’s the case, you will be putting the bridge in place yourself.
When you are setting the bridge, you will want to make sure that you position it so that the higher part of the bridge is beneath the G string. You will tilt the bridge up from beneath the strings and set it at a 90-degree angle. If you are unable to tilt the bridge beneath the strings in this manner, it means that the strings are too tight. Loosen them and get the bridge into position. You will want the bridge feet to be aligned with the two F-hole notches. You can then tighten and retune the strings.
To tune the violin strings, you will simply slowly tighten each of the strings until it reaches the correct not. The low string is G, followed by D, A, and E. Starting tuning with the G string and moving through the strings from thickest to thinnest is the best way to tune, as it will reduce the risk of damage to the smaller and thinner strings.
Keep in mind that you do not want to tighten the first string all the way to the correct pitch before moving on to the others. Start tightening them one by one until they are one to two notes higher. Move on to the next and do this in sequential order until you reach the correct pitch. Instead of trying to tune by ear, consider using a digital tuner. Many of the options on this list will come with one of these tuners, and you can find them for sale in a price range that should be affordable for everyone.
Taking Care of the Bow
In addition to the violin, you also need to make sure that you are taking good care of the bows. After all, the bows are what is going to help you make the sound of the violin. The bow needs to be tightened and rosined so it will produce sound. It is important to never touch the hair on the bow. You have oils in your fingers and when they get onto the hair of the bow, it can be damaged.
To tighten the hair, all you need to do is tighten the screw below the frog. Do not overtighten the bow. Ideally, the distance between the hair and the lowest curve in the bow will be about a quarter of an inch. However, as you progress from beginner violin and become more experienced, you might find that you want to have the hair somewhat tighter or looser. It will eventually be a matter of preference, but you should keep it to about a quarter of an inch for now.
Applying Rosin to the Bow
One of the other aspects of getting the bow ready to play will be applying the rosin. When you have a brand new rosin cake, you will not be able to apply it directly to the air because the rosin will be too smooth. Instead, you will want to get the rosin cake ready, by scoring it with a knife. This will provide texture to the rosin, which you will then make it easier to add the rosin to the bow. You will hold the frog on the bow and then rub the hair along the hair. If you have a new bow, you will want to do this for about five minutes, and make sure that you are rubbing slowly.
You can test to see if the bow has enough rosin on it. Play a few strings and see how it sounds. If you don’t have enough volume from the strings, it means that there is not enough rosin on the bow to grab the strings and produce sound. Add some more rosin and test it again. Typically, you will need to add rosin after every four hours or so of playing. You will be able to hear when it’s time to add more rosin.
How to Take Proper Care of Your Violin
One of the most important things you need to do is make sure that you have a high-quality case that can keep your violin safe. All of the options on the list above come with a case, which is nice. You should make sure that you are using the case and that you put the violin into it whenever you aren’t playing. You could also use a violin stand, but this doesn’t provide the same amount of protection.
After each use, make sure you wipe off the rosin from the strings and the violin. Also, only use quality cleaning solutions that are made specifically for violins and similar instruments. Never use solvents or alcohol, as this will end up damaging the violin. Also, you should loosen the violin bow when you are not using it.
Find the Best Violins Today
There are some great options for violins on the market, as you can see from the information above. You have the information to find the best violin for your needs, whether it is a beginner violin or something that can last through intermediate levels and beyond. Take the time to think about the options from the violin brands above and find a good violin today that has the features you want and need. You deserve to learn on one of the best.