Home Music & Audio Best Violins [Buying Guide] in 2020

Best Violins [Buying Guide] in 2020

by Jonathan Logtenberg
Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin Outfit - 4/4 Size
Mendini MV400 Ebony Fitted Solid Wood Violin with Hard Case, Shoulder Rest, Bow, Rosin, Extra Bridge and Strings - Size 1/2
Antonio Giuliani Primo Violin Full Size (4/4) Bundle By Kennedy Violins - Carrying Case and Accessories Included - Solid Maple Wood and Ebony Fittings
Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin
Mendini MV400 Violin
Lous Carpini G2 Violin - Carbon Fiber Edition
Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin Outfit - 4/4 Size
Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin
Mendini MV400 Ebony Fitted Solid Wood Violin with Hard Case, Shoulder Rest, Bow, Rosin, Extra Bridge and Strings - Size 1/2
Mendini MV400 Violin
Antonio Giuliani Primo Violin Full Size (4/4) Bundle By Kennedy Violins - Carrying Case and Accessories Included - Solid Maple Wood and Ebony Fittings
Lous Carpini G2 Violin - Carbon Fiber Edition

The violin is a beautiful instrument, and one of the most popular instrument that people decide to learn. Renting a violin is an option, but the price can rack up quickly, so it is a viable option to buy your own. Whether you are a beginner violinist, or you are a more advanced player, it is important to own your very own violin so that you can practice whenever, and wherever you may be. This decision can be difficult to make, as violins can range in price, accessories and features, so finding the right instrument for you and your needs can be confusing and a bit of a challenge.

That is why Surf’n’Buy have put together this guide, so that we can help you along the decision making process with some advice, tips and tricks, as well as five of our best recommended products. As a beginner, you may not know what your needs are, and that is why we have developed this helpful guide, so that we can encourage you to define your needs and find the products that will best fill them. As well as helping you to find the best product for your needs, we have also brought together information on the best brands on the market, as well as how you can define a good product from a bad product.

With all of this information, we are certain that you will be able to make a fully informed decision and find a product that will best suit your needs so that you can continue practicing with your very own violin and improve your skills with an instrument of your own. We have carefully researched all of our recommended products so that we only bring you the best options that are currently available. So, keep reading and enjoy this guide on how to find the best violin.

Here is Surf’n’Buy’s list of the top 5 violins in 2020.

Top 5 Violins

1. Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin

Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin Outfit - 4/4 Size
  • Music Inc. Magazine reviews SV-175 as "designed to meet the needs of beginning and advancing students."
  • Select tonewoods for the finest possible sound. Model SV-175 is Cremona's top selling student violin for more than 30 years
  • Every Cremona student violin comes with US-made Prelude strings, the educator's preferred strings for students
  • Set-up to MENC Standards at our Cremona workshop in California
  • Properly fitted Swiss-style ebony pegs and quality lightweight composite tailpiece with 4 smooth fine tuners for easy tuning


The Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin is described by Music Inc. Magazine as meeting the needs of beginners and advancing students, so it is perfect as an early learning violin. All Cremona violins are crafted with Prelude strings, which are the preferred and recommended strings by most violin educators. All manufacturing meets the MENC standards to provide you with assurance of quality. The Swiss style ebony pegs are beautifully carved and add a lightweight yet durable hold on the strings, keeping them in place and in tune. The ebony finishing tie the entire look and finish of the violin together and create a beautiful and professional finish. The lightweight construction makes the Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin the perfect violin to use in long periods of practice and strenuous performances. The tuners are formed in a special smooth fine design, making tuning as easy as possible.


  • The incredible durability and elegant look of the ebony features keep the violin in tune and sounding its best whilst still looking as beautiful and elegant as a professional fiddle.
  • The Swiss designed ebony pegs add a beauty to the rest of the violin, whilst also providing a stability for the strings and other parts of the violin so that tuning is much less regular than on other models.
  • The Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin is recommended by Music Inc. Magazine, so you know that this violin is of top quality for a beginner violinist, helping you improve your skills professionally.
  • The lightweight design is easy to hold for longer periods of play and performance, so you can practice for much longer periods of time to improve your skills.
  • With this violin meeting all of the necessary regulations, you can rest assured that it is of top quality and professionalism.


  • The tuning can fall easily if the violin is knocked and this can cause it to need tuned much more regularly, and even damage the pins if the knock is too severe.
  • The tuning pins are very difficult to move, making it harder to tune this violin than other options available.
  • The Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin can squeak very easily due to the tightness of the pins and this can interfere with the overall sound of the violin.
  • The bow that comes with this violin is of low quality and can break very easily. Many customers recommend upgrading the bow to get more durability and longevity from the bow.
  • The bow hairs can break and snap very easily, damaging the bow and overall sound that the violin produces.
  • The bridge of the violin sits very high and this can cause difficult playing properly for smaller players and students.


The Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin is a high quality and highly professional violin option to choose from and offers you everything that you need to learn properly and play professional violin pieces. If you are a beginner, or even an intermediate player, this violin is a fantastic option to choose, as it offers the beauty and elegance of a professional violin whilst still being an affordable option for those who are still learning. With a beautifully oiled finish and ebony parts, the look and feel of the violin is tied together well, and the sound is incredibly professional, helping beginners to learn the proper sounds and feel as they advance through their skills and techniques. If you are looking for the perfect violin to begin with then the Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin is definitely one to consider, as it comes in sizes for every student and learner.

2. Mendini MV400 by Cecilio: Best Violin for Beginner Player with a Budget

Mendini MV400 Ebony Fitted Solid Wood Violin with Hard Case, Shoulder Rest, Bow, Rosin, Extra Bridge and Strings - Size 1/2
  • 1/2 violin, hand-carved solid wood spruce top, Hand-carved solid wood maple back & sides
  • Beautiful inlaid purfling & varnish finish
  • Ebony fingerboard, chin rest and pegs, alloy tailpiece with four integrated fine tuners
  • Includes: Lightweight form fitting hard case with pockets, backpack straps and shoulder straps, two Brazil wood bow with unbleached genuine horsehair, extra set of violin strings, two violin bridges, a quality rosin, an adjustable shoulder rest with soft foam padding & soft rubber feet
  • 1 Year Warranty Against Manufacturer's Defects


Available in all sizes, this violin can grow with you as you learn to play violin throughout school, but also serves well as a full sized violin for adult players. The ebony fingerboard is incredibly smooth and makes chords much more comfortable. The ebony pins keep each string carefully in place whilst maintaining the overall look and elegance of the violin. The alloy tailpiece keeps each part of the violin sturdy and steady, even in the fastest of violin pieces. The Mendini MV400 comes with 2 brazil wood bows come with genuine, unbleached horsehair to get you the clearest and most natural sound. The Mendini MV400 comes with a hard case, adjustable shoulder rest, and everything else that you need to get started right away with both practices and performances. The manufacturer offers 1 year free warranty against manufacturing defects.


  • With all sizes available, you can still have the same make of violin during adolescence and adulthood, whilst still being used to the same sound and feel of the violin.
  • The ebony parts of the violin add a beautiful finish, whilst still serving practical purposes in keeping the violin stable.
  • The bows that come with the Mendini MV400 are made of beautiful, unbleached horsehair, perfect for the professional player as well as the advanced player, as these bows are at a professional standard, but are best for beginners to get used to the proper feel and sound of a violin.
  • The alloy tailpiece is incredibly durable, keeping the violin strong and all strings in place.
  • The one year warranty protects customers from any manufacturing defect to ensure that you receive only the best quality violin.
  • With everything that you need to get started, the Mendini MV400 can be used and performed with as soon as it arrives.


  • The chinrest that comes with the Mendini MV400 is a little uncomfortable.
  • The bows are very heavy on the handle, making the weighting of these bows different to other options and hard to get used to.
  • The natural hairs can snap and break much easier than options that have been treated in order to preserve them.
  • The case is not fully solid, it is slightly softer than other options, and this can make the case slightly less safe than others.
  • The strings that are supplied with the Mendini MV400 are not as high quality as some available to purchase separately, so if you are looking for high grade strings then it may be worth upgrading these.
  • The strings can come lose quite easily with this violin, and this can mean that they need retuned more often than usual.
  • The violin body is a little bit squeakier than other models, which can affect the overall sound.


The Mendini MV400 is one of the best, budget friendly violins that you can buy, and it is perfect for beginners who want to advance their skill before purchasing a more expensive model. This violin offers you a beautiful, yet sturdy body, quality, naturally haired bows, and a range of other features and added products that make it well worth the money buying this beautiful instrument. Although not as high quality as some of the higher priced violins, the Mendini MV400 is a great valued violin for its price. If you are looking for a violin that will serve a beginner through lessons and practice, then the Mendini MV400 could be an excellent option for you. However, the more seasoned and professional violinist may want a more professional grade quality violin.

3. Lous Carpini G2 Violin by Kennedy Violins: Best Violin for Beginners and Intermediates

Antonio Giuliani Primo Violin Full Size (4/4) Bundle By Kennedy Violins - Carrying Case and Accessories Included - Solid Maple Wood and Ebony Fittings
  • [HIGHEST QUALITY RATED] Ranked at #1 for customer service, Kennedy Violins is also proud to offer our Antonio Giuliani Primo full-size violin with accessories as the highest-rated stringed instrument!
  • [THE COMPLETE OUTFIT] Your Antonio Giuliani 4/4 violin purchase fully includes your violin, a Giuliani Brazilwood bow, Giuliani Rosin, Portland Classic case, Suzuki Book 1, extra strings, and a luggage tag.
  • [ASSEMBLED AND READY TO PLAY] We make sure you are ready to play your new violin by assembling and setting up the instrument for you. Final setup and assembly is performed by our professional luthiers right here in the US, Washington State.
  • [HANDCRAFTED WOOD] Our violins are handcrafted with solid maple and spruce tonewoods, 100% genuine ebony fittings, then completed with an oil finish.
  • [LIFETIME GUARANTEE] All of our Giuliani Primo Violins are fully backed by a lifetime warranty and a 45-day money-back guarantee. Are you ready to try out your new Kennedy violin bundle?


The Lous Carpini G2 Violin is handcrafted with solid maple and spruce toned woods, 100% genuine ebony fittings and an oil finish, giving you a beautiful violin with a highly professional and elegant finish. The violin comes with a genuine brazil wood bow, which goes perfectly with the tone and finish of the violin. The Lous Carpini G2 Violin comes with its own case, rosin and strings, giving you everything that you need to get started right away. The violin comes fully assembled so that you can begin practicing and performing as soon as your new instrument is delivered. The Lous Carpini G2 Violin comes in all four sizes, so you can get the right size to fit your body most comfortably and get the most from your violin. The violin body is set up by Kennedy Violins’ professional luthiers, guaranteeing quality and professionalism in each and every violin.


  • The Lous Carpini G2 Violin is a gorgeous instrument, created with the most elegant woods to give you an incredibly beautiful and lovely sounding violin for the best practice and skill development.
  • The violin comes with everything that you need to protect the violin, as well as get started right away with strings and rosin, so you don’t need to buy any extra supplies.
  • The violin is ready to go straight out of the box, no assembly required.
  • With all four sizes available, you can buy the same violin as you grow so that you don’t need to change brands or move away from the instrument that you love.
  • The professional assembly at the final stage of production means that this violin has quality assurance, and will offer you one of the most professional sounding violins available.
  • The Lous Carpini G2 Violin comes with a lifetime warranty, fully covering you against any issues that you may have with this violin.


  • The travelling of the violin may cause it to need tuned whenever it arrives.
  • The strings that are provided are not as good quality as other strings available, so you may want to upgrade the strings once you have the violin.
  • Not as high quality as would be needed for a professional player.


The Lous Carpini G2 Violin is a beautiful quality violin that is perfect for beginners and intermediates, as it allows you to get used to a beautiful sounding violin that is true to its tuning. This allows you to learn the proper sounds and get the most from your practice sessions. The violin is as beautiful looking as it is sounding, with some of the most elegant and stunning woods and tones used in the manufacturing of the Lous Carpini G2 Violin, the look and feel of the violin is one of the most professional for a beginner’s violin. Although the initial stringing of the violin is not as high quality as some of the other parts of the violin, this is easily fixed by getting the violin restrung by a professional with higher quality strings. If you are new to playing violin, but are serious about learning, you can’t get any better, or any more professional than the Lous Carpini G2 Violin.

4. Cecilio CVN-300 Violin with D’Addario Prelude Strings

Cecilio CVN-300 Solidwood Ebony Fitted Violin with D'Addario Prelude Strings, Size 4/4 (Full Size)
  • Size 4/4 (full size) violin with solid spruce wood top, maple back, neck and sides with inlaid purfling in antique varnish
  • Ebony fingerboard, pegs chinrest, and tailpiece with 4 detachable nickel plated fine tuners
  • Strung with D'Addario Prelude Strings
  • Includes: Cecilio chromatic tuner, lesson book, lightweight hard case, 2 x Brazilwood bows with unbleached genuine Mongolian horsehair, quality rosin cake, adjustable shoulder rest, and an extra bridge
  • 1 Year Warranty Against Manufacturer's Defects


The Cecilio CVN-300 Solid Wood Violin is built with a solid spruce wood top and a maple back, all varnished and oiled to give it a beautiful sheen and sturdy finish. The ebony fingerboard and pegs fit perfectly with the feel and finish of the violin, whilst also maintaining the string placements and improving comfortability during play. The Cecilio CVN-300 Solid Wood Violin is strung with D’Addario Prelude strings. The violin set includes a number of different products that will help to protect and maintain the violin so it keeps playing beautifully. The Cecilio CVN-300 Solid Wood Violin is available in all four violin sizes so that you can have the violin that perfectly fits with your size and hands. This violin comes with a 1 year warranty protecting customers from manufacturers defects, ensuring customer satisfaction.


  • The Cecilio CVN-300 Solid Wood Violin is beautifully crafted out of some of the most elegant woods, keeping the body producing as much of the natural violin sound as possible. This is best for beginners who need to get used to a natural violin sound.
  • This violin comes with a number of complimentary products that offer you protection for your violin, as well as maintenance.
  • The beautifully carved pegs keep the strings in place well so that the need for tuning is less often than other options.
  • The Cecilio CVN-300 Solid Wood Violin comes fully strung and ready to play, making it perfect for those who are eager to get started as soon as possible.
  • The one year warranty protects the violin against any manufacturing defect, ensuring that you receive only the best quality violin.
  • The violin comes pre-strung with a set of very high quality strings.


  • The final finish of the Cecilio CVN-300 Solid Wood Violin is slightly messier than other products, and many customers have stated that there has been glue visible on the joining areas of the violin.
  • The strings that are already installed in the violin are not as high quality as others that can be purchased at an extra cost.
  • The overall feel of the Cecilio CVN-300 Solid Wood Violin is rather a lot cheaper than some of the other models available on this list.
  • The shoulder rest is relatively low quality, and this can make it uncomfortable to wear on long periods of practice or performance.
  • During travelling, the Cecilio CVN-300 Solid Wood Violin can be bumped and scratched, resulting in damage to the violin whenever it arrives.


The Cecilio CVN-300 Solid Wood Violin is a great violin for beginners, as it offers a range of features that can help you develop your skills and technique, whilst still not being an expensive investment. If you want to start taking the violin seriously, but don’t want to spend too much money on your first instrument, the Cecilio CVN-300 Solid Wood Violin is an option that will give you everything that you want and need, without the spending too much money before you can play a professional fiddle properly.

5. Ricard Bunnel G1 Violin by Kennedy Violins : Best Violin for Student Violinist

Bunnel G1 Violin Clearance Outfit 3/4 Size - Carrying Case and Accessories Included - Highest Quality Solid Maple Wood and Ebony Fittings By Kennedy Violins
  • [PROFESSIONALLY SET UP CLEARANCE] The following instrument is listed on clearance due to a slight cosmetic defect that does not affect playability or sound in any way. Our 3/4 size Bunnel G1 Violin is the upgrade from our Bunnel G2 violin outfit. It features improved quality of wood, providing a richer, warmer sound and is professionally set up by our experienced luthiers.
  • [SOLID MAPLE WOOD] Solid carved (not pressed) maple back and sides, solid spruce top, Satin oil finish, Four professional quality built-in fine tuners on a composite tailpiece. Fitting bridge feet to the curvature of the violin and high-grade ebony fittings including polished fingerboard and pegs.
  • [ACCESSORIES INCLUDED] Your Bunnel G1 violin outfit comes with; Prelude Strings Installed, Portland String Set, Portland Gold Shoulder Rest, Tuner, Polishing Cloth, "Intro to Violin" book, Artcraft Rosin, Giuliani Brazilwood Bow, and a Portland Oblong carrying case.
  • [HIGHEST QUALITY VIOLIN] Kennedy Violins is known for having the highest-quality craftsmanship and performance instruments. Playing your music with the best quality violin, as you know, makes all the difference.
  • [LIFETIME GUARANTEE] All of our Bunnel G1 Violins are fully backed by a lifetime warranty and a 45-day money-back guarantee. Are you ready to try out your new Kennedy violin outfit?


All of Kennedy violins are backed by a lifetime guaranteed warranty that offers customers full coverage in the case of any issues with their violins. As with all of Kennedy produced violins, the Ricard Bunnel G1 Violin is assembled in its final stages by Kennedy violin experts, ensuring quality in every step of production. Crafted with maple and spruce woods, this violin gives the most natural and realistic violin sound so that beginners can learn effectively and experts can play professionally. The body of the violin is carefully oiled to ensure durability and a beautiful finish. This violin is ready to go straight out of the box, all of the set up and assembly has been done for you. Each violin comes with a bow, a case, rosin and D’Addario strings to get you started straight away with the Ricard Bunnel G1 Violin.


  • The handcrafted body of the Ricard Bunnel G1 Violin creates the most natural and realistic sound, as similar to professional fiddles as possible, and this can help beginner players to hone their skills whilst professional players can enjoy the realistic sounds.
  • The lifetime guarantee that comes with all of Kennedy Violins gives you peace of mind should anything happen to your violin.
  • With everything that you need to get started and a fully assembled violin from the minute you open the box, you can get started with practicing and developing your skills as soon as the violin arrives.
  • With Kennedy experts on board with the production and manufacturing of each of the products, you can be sure that Kennedy Violins are of the highest quality, no matter the fact that they are a budget brand of violin. We are confident that you won’t notice the difference.


  • The sound of the violin can sound muffled if the proper care is not taken with the body of the Ricard Bunnel G1 Violin, and this can affect the overall accuracy of the sounds.
  • The sound post can become easily damaged, affecting the realism of the sound overall.
  • The sound is not as high a quality as some of the more expensive brands and this can affect how a professional player can create.
  • The strings are not of the highest quality, but this can be swapped and changed for better quality strings at a later date.
  • The natural design of the bow hairs can cause the hairs to split and break very easily, this means that you will need to replace the bow or the hairs sooner than you would if the hairs were treated with a strengthener.
  • The Ricard Bunnel G1 Violin is more suited for a student player rather than a professional.


The Ricard Bunnel G1 Violin is the perfect first violin for the beginner or student violinist, as it offers a huge range of options and features that can help you to improve your skills and give you everything that you need to develop the proper technique. Although it is not entirely suited for the more professional player, it is still one of the best violin options for those who want their own instrument to practice with without having to spend too much on a violin. No matter what experience that you may have with the violin, the Ricard Bunnel G1 Violin is a beautifully created instrument that will allow you to develop your skills at home in your own time, rather than being restricted to rental and school practice, as you can practice at any time you please. If you are looking for a good first violin, the Ricard Bunnel G1 Violin is definitely a violin option to consider.

How to Distinguish a Good Violin from a Bad One  


Intonation is the tones and notes that can be played through instrument and in a violin, this is decided through your fingers. This can be hard to do, as it takes a lot of time and effort to get these notes right. However, a clear and comfortable fretboard and high quality strings can massively improve the sound and allow you to hear the notes a lot clearer. All of this together helps learners to improve their skills much easier and faster so that they can improve proper technique and playing style, bringing them to a professional standard much faster.


The ergonomics of a violin are based on where you hold it and how it sits on your shoulder and in your hands. This can vary from violin to violin and is usually changed by the wood that the violin is made out of and the bridging of the violin. Many people choose to add a shoulder rest to their violins as this will help to improve comfortability and proper positioning on the shoulder. Another factor that changes the ergonomics is the size of the violin. Smaller students will be more comfortable with one of the smaller versions of a violin, where adults will need the full size.


Bowing is the pressure and movement of the bow against the strings and will change the sound of the notes that the violin produces. The bow can change the sound of the notes and this is something that you should definitely consider. All violins come with a bow, but you can purchase different bows if you want to upgrade the bow. The material of the bow changes the quality of the bow. The most common materials are horsehair and this can be treated or untreated. Treated lasts longer but can add a scratchy tone to the sound of the notes.


The different materials that go into the production of the violin also makes a difference in the quality of the violin and the sound it produces. Some of the higher quality violins are made from maple wood and other fine woods and this can create a much more diverse and deep sound and feel. The material of the tailpiece is also important, as this will determine how durable the violin is. Alloy is much more durable, but wood is a much prettier option. Materials also change the look of the violin, so this can also depend on personal preference.


The final determination of quality in a violin is the feel of it. This will depend on size, smoothness and comfortability. A lot of this is dependent on personal feel and preference, but the higher the quality wood usually means a better comfortability and the ease at which you hold the violin. The fretboard and the smoothing of the materials used can also effect the feel and comfortability of holding the strings down as you play. As with all instruments, the better the quality, the better the feel and sound of the music and tone.

Factors to Consider when Buying a Violin


Just because a violin isn’t a name brand doesn’t mean that it is any less quality as one that is. Some of the more budget friendly brands can produce some of the best quality violins out there, and won’t be as costly as the higher name brands. As well as this, just because a violin says it belongs to a brand, doesn’t mean that it is. Some counterfeit manufacturers are able to copy violins and make them look very realistic, so make sure that if you do buy a name brand violin online that it has a letter of authentication, but name brands are not totally necessary as you can get some great violins at very good prices.

Experience Level

There are three main levels of experience: beginner, intermediate and professional, and each offers different things.

Beginner – Beginner violins are generally made of lower quality woods and plastic parts. These violins are not generally as high quality in sound, but are budget friendly for those who want to practice on their skills before purchasing an expensive fiddle.

Intermediate – Intermediate violins are generally more costly, but have a better quality feel and sound. This helps intermediates to develop their skills and listening to get a more natural and real sound.

Professional – Professional violins are the most expensive of the lot, and are incredibly beautiful in style and sound. These violins are made for performing and playing more intense and stylistic pieces.


Violins range in size from 1/32-4/4, with 4/4 being a full sized violin. The right size can make the violin much more comfortable to play and hold, so getting the right size is important so that you aren’t uncomfortable as you play. The size of a violin should be matched to the length of the arm and the general table for getting the right size is below.

Violin Size Arm Length (in inches)
4/4 23
3/4 22
1/2 20
1/4 18.5
1/8 16.5
1/10 15
1/16 14
1/32 13

Types of Tone Wood

The sound of a violin is largely based on the wood that the violin is made out of. Some of the most common woods are spruce and maple, and these make the best sounds. These woods are also some of the most beautiful grains and when they are oiled they add a gorgeous finish to the violin. However, these woods are quite expensive, so some of the more budget friendly violins use lower quality grains and woods. Woods determine the durability and value as well as the look and the sound, so it’s important that you know the type of wood that you’re looking for and what effect it will have on the violin.

Acoustic vs Electric

As a new player, you may be wondering whether it may be beneficial to you to buy an electric violin rather than an acoustic violin, and while they are beneficial as they do not need tuning and maintenance. While electric violins have a modern design and are a lot easier to maintain, they cannot achieve the same warm tones and sounds that an acoustic violin can if they are played properly.

But if you are a performer who wants to look more futuristic and be able to connect violin to the amplifier, you should consider an electric violin.

Care and Maintenance

Case – A case is vitally important for keeping your violin as safe as possible. The best option is a hard case, as this will protect your violin from any scratches, bumps and dints that may occur during travelling.

Cleaning – To keep your violin clean you will need a dusting cloth and a rosin at the very least, as this will keep the wood clean and polished, which maintains both the look and the health of the wood.

Strings – Extra strings are a must because you don’t want to have to stop practice if a string breaks. Keeping extra strings handy is the best way to maintain your violin in working condition.

Buying Online

Although it may be hard to believe, there are a few perks from buying online that you don’t get from buying in a shop or from a second-hand dealer.

Price – In actual music shops you will almost always pay more, as they add a commission onto the instrument in order to pay the staff, but online you can compares prices, brands and other features so that you get the best deal possible

Fit – Although it sounds silly, you can read independent reviews from real people who will comment on the product and whether the fit is exactly what it says it is. This can clue you into whether or not you may need a larger or smaller size.

Customer Recommendations – With all of the customer recommendations available online you can find out all of the information you need about your violin before you buy it because you can read the reviews written by previous customers. With all of this information available you are much more likely to find the instrument that will suit you best and fill all of your needs. Customers will also recommend little things that they did with their violins to get the most out of it, and this can help you once you have purchased your violin to get the most out of it too. Make sure that you take a read through the customer recommendations, there may be something useful in them to help you when you’re buying a new violin.

Best Brands

There are a number of brands to choose from when deciding on a student and learning violin, and there are a number of reasons and features that each one offers with their violins. This part of Surf’n’Buy guide goes through 5 of the best violin brands that you can choose from so that you can get the best violin for your needs and hopefully a violin that will last as you improve your skills. Take a look through our top rated brands and what they may be able to offer you. Some of our brands focus on violins for students, where others also make violins at every level of experience, so you are sure to find the right option for you.


Sentor are at the top of the list for student violins and can range between $150-180. They are some of the most durable and reliable violins and are one of the best options for students. They have some of the highest quality fingerboards and pegs and still look gorgeous at the same time. With their high quality materials, they produce one of the closest sounds to the more professional, performance violins and this gives you the best violin to learn with and develop your skills. For more intermediate player, there are more advanced violins for you to try out that have higher grade woods for a better and more natural sound. Sentor focus more on student violins, making them the perfect brand for learners and intermediate players to help hone their violin skills to a professional level.


Knilling are a popular brand amongst violin teachers and most students due to their high quality materials and manufacturing, producing some of the best sounds and tones from a student violin. Knilling also specialize in creating pegs in their violins that make it easier and faster to tune and keep the strings tuned properly. This can really help beginners by allowing them to learn how to properly tune and retune a violin without having to tune the violin too often. Knilling is, however, one of the more expensive beginner violins and their violins are priced at roughly $500 and upwards.


A popular brand in this guide, Cremona is one of the most popular violin brands for beginners and intermediates. Their affordable violins offer a range of possibilities, features and helpful add ons that allow you to learn and develop your skills so that you can improve your technique properly. They use the highest quality woods to keep the sound of their violins as natural and professional as possible so that you can learn the proper tuning and tones from a professional grade violin. Their high quality violins begin in price from around $150, but their best products can range up to $300.


Another brand featured in our guide is Cecilo, another violin brand that is popular with both students and teachers. Cecilo violins come fully assembled with the bridge already attached so that students don’t have to put them together themselves. This can be an advantage and a disadvantage because students don’t learn how to assemble the violins by themselves. Cecilo violins are usually crafted from maple and spruce with ebony features, creating some really beautiful violins whilst still being very affordable. A Cecilo student violin costs as low as $200, but can range in price the higher the quality the materials used.


The final brand that we recommend for beginner and intermediate students in Mendini, a factory made brand with great value and low prices, beginning at $199 per violin. These violins are a lot more durable than other brands, so this brand will last you a lot longer than most so that you don’t have to buy more, but the strings are not as high quality when they come with the violin. However the body of the violin is one of the best quality around in the student violin market, so make sure you take a look at this high quality, low cost brand.

How to Find the Best Violin for your Needs

It can be difficult to know what violin will best suit your needs, and even figuring out what your needs are. This part of Surf’n’Buy guide puts together four of the best ways that you can make sure you know you are choosing the right option for you by helping to guide you along the process so that you know you are going to purchase the violin that is best for you.


It’s very easy to say that you should always buy at the top of your price range, and whilst this almost always guarantees you a better quality product, you may not get everything that you want out of your violin. Although you should always spend a bit more if you can afford it, make sure that you also look at materials and features that come with your violin and also ensure that these are the ones that you want, as there is a wide variation of materials and features that come with different violins.


There are high and low quality materials, and this will affect how your violin sounds and feels, as well as the weight and comfortability of the violin as you play it. We have already discussed some of the higher grade materials so that you know what the higher end of the violin quality may be, but this does not automatically guarantee the right fit for you. Some of the metal tailpieces and plastic pins can ensure greater durability, but wooden parts will offer a more natural sound, so you should decide whether you want realism or longevity.

New or Used

You may be considering buying a second hand violin, and while this is a valid option it is not always recommended, especially where instruments are concerned. Second hand violins can be subject to a lot more damage and hits than a brand new violin and this can affect the sound and the durability of the instrument. Not to mention that a second hand instrument could be hiding big issues that can cost a lot more to fix than the price of a new violin. We always recommend buying a violin that is only your own, that way you know you are getting a new instrument with no issues.

Tips and Tricks


Always, always, always store your violin in its case when it is not being played. Leaving it on a chair or a couch can leave it at risk of falls, knocking and bumps, all of which can damage your violin. When storing your violin, make sure to keep it in a safe place, not where it can be tipped over. The best way to store your violin when it is in its case is on its side or on its back, that way there is no risk of your violin resting on its bridge, which can also cause damage.

The Right Case

The best case for your violin is a hard body case with plenty of padding in the cushioning, as this will give a soft cushion for your violin whilst also protecting your violin from any nasty bumps and falls. There are a number of case sizes to choose from and the best size is the one that matches the size of your violin because this will stop the violin being able to rub or move when it is inside the case.

Crossrock CRA400VFCH 4/4 Full Size Violin Case, Zippered ABS Molded Backpack Style in Champagne
Robot Exterior Design. Cool.; Hard foam core inside with deep plush lining and half suspension design.


Humidity can really damage a violin, as the wood and hairs are sensitive to changes in moisture, causing them to warp. In the winter you should use a humidifier, as this will keep the wood and hair moist and supple. If the wood dries out it may crack and the hairs can break. Simply place a humidifier on the inside of your violin for the best results, however there are other options available that sit in the case. Some of the more expensive and high quality cases will have humidifiers built into the body of the case rather than having to buy one separately.

The Original Dampit Violin Humidifier
The ORIGINAL Dampit, Not An imitation!; For Violin; Humidifies - Protects; Made Of The Finest Materials - Long-Lasting - Easy To Use


Maintaining your violin takes a lot of work, and a lot of cleaning. You should clean your violin after every use to keep it in the best condition. To clean your violin use a soft, fibreless dusting cloth to clean off any debris, then every week or two go over the violin with a high quality rosin. This will keep the wood as supple and protected as possible, ensuring that your violin lasts and doesn’t get damaged due to the lack of protection, stopping craps and warping from lack of maintenance. It may seem like a lot, but its worth it.

Music Nomad MN201 Microfiber Suede Polishing Cloth
12-inch x 16-inch high quality, super soft microfiber cloth; Lint-free material great for cleaning strings after every time you play
The Original Bernardel Rosin For Violin - Viola - Cello
For Violin, Viola and Cello; Medium light rosin; Comes in a handy pouch; Made in France; The Original Bernardel Rosin, not an imitation!

Sticky Pegs

Pegs can get sticky with frequent, or even infrequent use, and this can make the violin hard to tune properly. To solve this you can use a product called ‘peg dope’ on the pegs to loosen them up and make tuning the violin a bit easier. However, you should only use the smallest amount, as this can seep into the wood of the violin pegs and fretboard and cause warping and unnecessary damage, so be careful with how much you use. There are a number of different products available so look around for a good quality option.

HILL The Original Peg Compound (HILL-ZW-97)
The ORIGINAL Hill Peg Compound, not an imitation!; Quality peg compound; Made in England; Pegs turn smoother

Slippy Pegs

Sometimes pegs can go completely the other way and become way to slippery, meaning that your violin will lose tuning much more easily and require you to tune the violin more often than you may be able to play it. Unfortunately there is no quick fix for this as there is with sticky pegs and the best solution is to take the violin to a luthier to get the pegs refitted or get a replacement set. Although it may be costly, it will be worth it to get your pegs working properly again so you can practice more effectively.


Sometimes you may notice a buzzing noise when you play the violin and this can change the sound and the tones of the music you play. 9 times out of 10 this issue is caused by a loose chinrest which vibrates against the violin. This causes damage to the violin and that annoying buzzing noise. To fix it, simply tighten the chinrest with a chinrest key, but be careful not to tighten it too far as you can cause damage to the wood of the violin by crushing the chinrest too far in the other direction.

Flat Flesch 4/4 Violin Chinrest - Ebony with Standard Bracket
Flat Flesch-style; Ebony - crafted from the finest Indian woods; Standard bracket; Center mount
The String Centre Chinrest Wrench
Easier to use than the tiny supplied "wire" wrenches

Bow Hair

Bow hair is also important to maintain, and you should get your bow rehaired roughly every six months to keep it in its best conditions. To make your bow hair last longer you can should also loosen your bow when it is not in use. This will prevent any undue pressure on the hair, causing it to stretch or break. If your bow hair is too tight it can also break the bow itself, so be careful to maintain the bow with the same amount of care and attention that you use to maintain your violin.


Playing the violin is a great hobby and the wide variation of pieces you can play mean you’ll never be bored. If you are looking to learn violin and get serious about it, it is much more cost effective to buy a violin of your own rather than rent, as the cost of renting a quality violin can get very expensive very quickly. Buying your own violin gives you a lot more freedom to practice and perform if and when you please without restriction, but finding the right option can be difficult.

We hope that Surf’n’Buy guide has helped you to define what your needs are from a violin and what features that can fill it so that you can find a violin that will suit you best. We also have five of the best products, all carefully researched, that we are confident will give an option for just about everyone, from the beginner to the performer. Our guides are all very carefully put together so that we only give you the best advice on different products, as well as the best products available.

What’s more, we also provide you with some great advice on maintaining and cleaning your violin so that you can make the most of your violin and maintain it so that it much more durable and stays protected. We hope that you have enjoyed this guide and that we have helped you come to the right decision. We also hope to see you in the future to help you with any other purchases that require more information, as we have developed a huge range of guides to help you make the right decision and we always have more on the way. But, for now, enjoy your new violin and enjoy playing!


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