The lost parent's guide to buying a violin...
Author: Customer Support Date Posted:15 January 2021
If you're looking to purchase a violin, but have no idea what to look for or even where to start, we're here to help! The most common scenario is a lost parent needing to purchase their child an instrument but not having a clue what to look for.
Don't worry, it's very common...
Hopefully here we can put your mind at ease and steer you in the right direction.
1) What size do I need to buy?
This is perhaps the most common thing asked. Violins come in a range of sizes, the most popular being 1/4 (quarter size), 1/2 (half size), 3/4 (3 quarter size), and 4/4 (come on, I'm sure you've figured it out by now, yes that's a full size). There are other sizes, however these are the most common suspects.
Now we will say this - if you or your child is taking lessons and seeing a teacher, it's always best to get their advice on size. This is because the teacher will know you or your child's playing style and ability - making him/her the best judge. If you don't have the luxury of a teacher, check out this size guide:
As you can see, this chart gives you a pretty good guide on sizing. It shows the approximate age of the player, along with arm length. Have a quick measure and check this chart, you'll be able to find the correct size instrument.
2) What accessories do I need?
This is also a common question. When buying a violin for somebody that hasn't owned one before, it's important you get everything needed to play it. After all, there is no point having a nice instrument if you can't make noise with it.
In these circumstances, it's always best to buy what is called an "outfit". An outfit is made up of the instrument, a case, a bow and rosin. Keep in mind, they don't usually include a shoulder rest, so add that as well if needed. Having a shoulder rest will be more comfortable for the student and will help with their playing. If you need advice on shoulder rests, just get in touch.
That's about it for what's needed to get playing, but it's always good to make sure the student has the other bits and pieces needed to help them along, like a music stand or tuition book.
These things will further their learning greatly and are well worth the money.
3) Here's a tip: Have the instrument set up by a professional
Having the violin set up by a professional will go a long way towards playability and comfort when using the instrument.
A setup involves adjusting the tailpiece, bridge, nut and some other items, ensuring the instrument will perform at it's best, and the student benefits greatly. It gives them an instrument set up by an experienced professional, not by mum or dad watching a youtube video...
Most of our violins come setup at no additional charge, with the exception of the very cheap ones. Just check the product description, or get in touch if you would like to know more.
Please note, your instrument setup may delay shipping, as they aren't setup until just before they leave. This allows us to get some basic info about the player from you and pass it along to make sure the setup is as good as possible. Most of the time this delay is only 1-2 business days, however this varies accoording to work load.
4) If possible, try to get the highest quality instrument that budget allows
No, we aren't just trying to con you out of more money, there is a difference.
The higher quality instruments use better materials and the build quality is of a greater standard. After all, you get what you pay for, just like everything else in life. This is an instrument that hopefully you or your child will stick with, and there isn't much point buying a cheap and nasty one because it won't be long before you will have to replace it.
We understand that everybody has a budget, so we stock only good quality instruments - even our cheap ones are made well. (Just not as well as the expensive ones)
A good quality violin usually starts around the $300-$350 mark, but not here. We have good quality, name brand, complete student violin outfits starting at under $200!
5) Enjoy the amazing sound of your child learning the violin!
Remember, we sell ear plugs as well...
Hopefully this has helped you learn more about what to look for and what you'll need to buy. If you have any questions at all, we're here to help - click here and get in contact, or leave a comment below, we don't bite.