We would like to commence our search for the Best Violin For Kids by giving a brief history of the instrument. But this is difficult with the violin because there have been so many variations over the centuries.
It is possible that it was first seen as a Lyre in Ancient Greece. Then it went through a number of different styles until we came to the early 1500s where the violin that we know today emerged. It only had three strings then but was further described in the Epitome musical first produced in Lyon, France, in the 1560s.
In the 16th and 17th centuries, it became a status symbol. Royalties and very wealthy people had their own violin maker or Luthier. They tended to be made in families with the skills being handed down from father to son.
Stradivari is a good example. One of the family’s violins was sold at auction in 2011 for 9.8 million UK pounds. What is thought to be the Stradivari’s finest instrument is still in existence and housed in the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford, UK. That is the museum of Art at the University of Oxford.
Most of the families making violins were Italian. And during the ‘Golden Age’ of the 16th and 17th centuries, the Violin became what it is today courtesy of these Italian families. Concertos were written, and it became one of the key instruments of the orchestra.
Nowadays, it is, of course, played classically and orchestrally but has also found its way into popular music. The genres of its uses are wide, and in some circles, it is known as a ‘fiddle.’ Vanessa-Mae and Nigel Kennedy and others have brought the instrument to a whole new level these days.
It is now an instrument that children often learn from a very young age. However, it’s not an easy instrument to play. It takes a lot of technique to make it sound even half-way decent. Having a good instrument is very much a part of that. Having a good bow is also important.
So, let’s take a look at what’s on offer as we find the best violin for kids…
Top 10 Best Violin For Kids of 2023
1 Mendini 4/4 MV300 Solid Wood Satin Antique Violin
Cecilio is well-known as a manufacturer of orchestral instruments at various levels. Their starter range for beginners comes under the brand name of Mendini. Amongst those wishing to buy a violin for a beginner, they are well-respected. If you are looking for a violin for a starter, we doubt you will find a better instrument for the money.
The MV300 is a full-size violin made specifically for a beginner. Mendini is known to use quality materials in the manufacture, and this violin is no exception. The woods they have used are of high quality. Maple wood for the back and sides and Spruce for the top. Both are known as excellent tonewoods.
Maple creates a warm resonance for the instrument, and Spruce adds a little bit of top-end. Combined, they produce a nice sound. The standard ‘f’ holes are carved into the body and to complete the authentic look some inlaid purfling. It is finished with an antique satin finish.
Maple is certainly not a cheap option for instrument building. However, they have also used it for the neck, the chin rest as well as the tuning pegs. The parts of the violin that are made from wood are all varnished. The tailpiece is made from alloy metal.
An important consideration when buying a violin for a new player is cost. You don’t want to spend too much in case they decide to quit. The problem is that if the instrument you buy is too cheap, then it is almost unplayable.
They are affordable, but they are also well-made and play nicely. It is not the highest quality of violin you will find. It is just a starter instrument, and as they progress, an upgrade will be required. To start with, though, it is a good option to consider.
It comes as part of a package that includes a Brazilwood bow made with real horsehair and shoulder rest. They also provide some Rosin for the bow, spare strings, and a zippered fabric case. It means a good package for a starter and one that won’t break the bank. It is made in China.
- A very affordable violin that plays nicely.
- Looks attractive.
- It is a very basic instrument and will only suit a beginner.
2 Cremona SV-175 Premier Student Violin Outfit
Cremona has a big reputation for making quality violins for beginners. The name resonates through European musical history and forms a part of Italian culture to this day. They produce violins of quality at all levels. This particular instrument is a full-sized violin that is designed especially for the beginner.
The body is made from solid maple wood that is hand-carved. Maple has long been recognized as an excellent tonewood. To apply the finish touches to the ambiance of the sound, it is given a Spruce top. Again a tonewood recognized for its acoustic qualities.
The construction is expertly designed to make it lightweight. It weighs just over one pound and is therefore ideal for the young player. It has the standard carved ‘F’ holes and some nice purfling around the edges.
If the quality of the woods for the body are good, so are the materials used for the fittings, It has an ebony fingerboard giving the instrument some natural elegance. Likewise, the Swiss-style pegs are also made from ebony. The tailpiece is a composite material to give the violin stability. At the tail, there are four fine tuners.
This has been Cremona’s best selling violin for beginners for many years, and it is not hard to see why. Quality workmanship and materials produce a sound that is excellent. It is going to allow the student to grow and won’t need a quick upgrade. This violin is made at the Cremona factory in China. It comes with a high-quality case and a bow
A little more expensive than some other student violins, but the extra quality of the instrument might be worth consideration. It is considered by many to be the best violin for kids.
- Well made with excellent materials.
- Good tonewoods produce an impressive sound.
- The price might put some off.
3 SKY 1/10 Size SKYVN201 Solid Maple Wood Violin
Sky produces a range of Violins for beginners across sizes to accommodate all ages. And they produce them at very competitive prices. More on this later. This particular violin is 1/10 size. That means it is going to suit a young player of about 3 to 5 years.
However, age is not the critical thing about choosing a size. More important is the arm length of the player. This size is best suited for a young musician with an arm length of between 15 and a half and 17 inches. The instrument itself measures 23 inches by 9 by 5 inches, at four pounds though it is quite heavy.
It might only be for a very young player, but the quality of the materials used in the construction are good. It has Maple wood back and sides that have been given a flamed varnish finish. The standard ‘F’ holes are carved into the top, which is made of solid Spruce.
The top and body have been given a dark edging adding to the vintage feel of the instrument. The neck is also Maple, as is the scrolled headpiece.
You can only admire the look of this violin. It comes as part of a package that also includes a plastic shoulder rest and a Brazilwood bow, which is not the highest quality. It has a sturdy well-lined case and some quality Rosin for the bow.
It is hard to see how this violin can be produced with the extra accessories included at such a low price point. We would agree that it is not the best student violin out there. But for someone who wants to ‘test the water’ with a young player, it is not going to break the bank. It is an attractive instrument that is worthy of consideration. It is made in China, as most student violins are.
- Very attractive looking violin made with good materials.
- Affordable price point.
- The Bow is the weak point of the package.
4 D Z Strad Violin Model 100 With Solid Wood Size 1/4 Violin
DZ Strad is a recognized dealer in all things to do with orchestral string instruments. Nothing to do with Stradivari, of course, they have a Violin shop in New York State. This is also a workshop for not only violins but also cellos and violas. This and the accessories that go with those instruments. They are a recommended manufacturer by Suzuki and other music schools.
You get the feeling these guys know what they are doing. It is a 1/4 size violin that is handmade and has a Spruce top, but it is a bit more than that.
It has been ‘air-dried’ for ten years before use. This ensures an extra quality of tone. But it also means it is prepared for extensive use without some of the problems that can occur. The spruce top has the standard ‘F’ holes carved in and plain black edging. The look is finished off with an attractive lacquer.
The sides and back are made from a quality Maple that helps to give this violin its rich, warm sound. The rest of the instrument is manufactured with consummate care and attention to detail. It has an alloy tailpiece with four accurate tuners.
This is one of the highest quality instruments you are going to find. However, being made from quality materials makes it is a little more expensive than some. But when considering the price, you must consider that this is a longer-term investment than a very cheap alternative. That cheaper version might not be the best and most cost-effective deal. In the end, if it needs to be replaced early, it will cost you more.
Certainly, in our view, one of the best beginner violins you are going to find. The sound is great, and the intonation is excellent. A quality buy, there is no doubt. It comes with a good Brazilwood bow and a shoulder rest. Also included are a case and some Rosin for the care of the horsehair on the bow.
- High level of quality in the materials and the build.
- Very good sound and intonation.
- More expensive than some of its competitors.
5 Cremona SV-200 Premier Student Violin Outfit – 4/4 Size
Back to Cremona for another class instrument. This one the SV-200 a bit higher up the scale of student instruments. Must be thought of as one of the best beginner violins. This violin is not only built well and looks great, but it sounds impressive.
It has a Maple body and a Spruce top. We don’t need to keep repeating ourselves about the quality of these two tonewoods. Together they produce a rich warm sound. Both the top and body are hand-carved. The top has the Traditional ‘F’ holes and very understated but attractive purfling around the edges.
The ‘F’ holes are often taken for granted as just ‘being there’ on a classical instrument. They look attractive, but that’s not why they are there. They transmit the vibrations within the body of the instrument caused by resonance. The resonance will depend on the quality of the woods and the construction. They are an integral part of the sound production.
The body is finished off with a flamed varnish that gives the violin a traditional authentic look. Another quality wood, ebony, is used for the fingerboard and also the Swiss-style tuning pegs and swirl at the headstock. The tailpiece is an alloy with four fine tuners.
This is another quality instrument from Cremona. Made in China, it has a high build quality and excellent sound. It comes with a very impressive padded case with a zip and a quality bow with real Horsehair.
Cremona knows how to make quality violins for beginners, and this certainly a good example of that. At a weight of just over one pound, it is ideal for the starter. A little more expensive than some, but you are buying quality.
- High quality build using good materials.
- Great sound and comfortable playing action.
- Price may deter some.
6 Stentor, 4-String Violin (1500 3/4)
Stentor is a recognized manufacturer of quality stringed instruments. They were founded in South London as far back as 1895. They are now based in Surrey. This violin is made in the Stentor factory in China, which was established 20 years ago. They make a full range of Violins, Violas, Cellos, and Double Basses.
Stentor uses good quality materials for their instruments. This three-quarter sized violin is made with solid Maple back, and sides and has a Spruce top. The ‘F’ holes are hand-carved, and it has a very attractive inlaid purfling on the edges.
Another quality wood, Ebony, is used for the fittings, including the tuning pegs and the chin rest. The tailpiece is alloy and has four fine-tuning adjustors. The violin is given a vintage-looking lacquer finish that emphasizes the grain in the wood.
It comes with a good quality wooden bow with horsehair and an ebony frog. In the package is also a canvas case, and it includes a useful instrument blanket. It is ideally suited for a young starter being just one pound in weight.
If what you are looking for is a budget range Violin to start with, then this instrument is worth considering. It is not the best you will find, but it will be one of the cheapest. It is well-made and looks nice and plays quite well. Ideal then, for a beginner.
- Well made with good materials.
- A very affordable price.
- Some will want a higher quality instrument.
7 Crescent 4/4 Full-Size Student Violin Starter Kit
With the costs of violins for the beginner varying so much, it’s always a difficult decision on which to choose. You are reticent to spend too much in case they can’t get on with it. But if the instrument is poor quality, then it will be unplayable anyway. There are a few of those around. This is a full-size violin that comes as part of a complete package to get the young musician started.
This violin is made with quality tonewoods — maple for the back and sides and Spruce for the top. A tried and trusted combination to create a good sound. The neck is also Maple with an Ebony fingerboard. The tailpiece is an alloy which gives a little stability to the instrument. There are four fine tuners. The tuning pegs are wooden, and the bridge and chin rest are also wood. It makes for an attractive looking instrument.
It is very much a budget range violin, though, so you must expect it to have the odd flaw. However, it plays nicely and is quite well put together. However, it is not a top of the range student instrument. But then it isn’t top of the range price. You may find that after mastering the basics, then an upgrade of the instrument to better quality might be needed.
We mentioned the package, and it has some useful inclusions — a horsehair bow, of course, and a small pot of Rosin to grease the hair. A very nice zipper carrying case, some spare strings, and an electronic tuner are also included. The bridge is included but will need to be fitted. This isn’t too complicated but will need a little care. There are videos on Youtube to show you how.
It is a cheap option, and at the end of the day, you get what you pay for. If you just want to try out the student to see if they get on with the violin, it might be a good choice.
- Very affordable.
- Has an attractive look to it.
- As a budget level violin, it won’t be the best quality you will find.
8 Toy Violin — Electronic Toy Violin For Kids
And now for something completely different. Many people accuse starter instruments, often very unfairly, of being toys. Well, here is one. It doesn’t try to pretend that it is a real violin. However it is a bit of fun for a very young child. It is actually quite a good idea instead of buying the real thing to start with. They can play with this, and it will make its own music, but it might enthuse the child to want the real thing.
It has to be said that it is a very good replica of a real violin. It has proper tuning pegs, with strings, bow, and chin rest. And just 15 inches in length and weighing only eleven ounces, it is easy for a young child to hold.
It is battery operated, and when the bow plays across two strings, it will play tunes. There are 25 included in the memory bank. They are all nursery rhyme type tunes. There is also a button you can push that will start the music. The interesting thing is it doesn’t make that rather grating electronic sound you might expect. The sound it produces is remarkably like a real violin.
Before you get too excited, it cannot actually be played like a violin. It is just a toy, but it is good fun, and at the price might be worth introducing a 2 or 3-year-old to the instrument this way. It is certainly going to make them think it’s a real violin by how it looks.
- A bit of fun to introduce a young child to the instrument.
- A very affordable price.
- It cannot be played like a violin.
9 Mendini 4/4 MV500
Back to the real thing and another student violin from Mendini. This model, though, a little higher up their product range for beginners. This is an instrument that is designed to suit the beginner but will last a little longer into the improver levels.
The back and sides are Maple, which is hand-carved. Likewise, the Spruce top is made from a single piece of wood and hand-carved. The standard ‘F’ holes are carved in, and the edges have nice inlaid purfling. The body of the instrument is then given an antique-looking varnish that is darker than we usually see.
For this violin, the materials are similar to the less expensive instruments. The difference is this Violin is hand made with great care to produce a quality instrument. We are not saying that lesser models in the range have a poor build quality. This instrument is just at a higher level, which is why it costs more.
Ebony is the wood of choice for the neck, the tuning pegs, and chin rest. The tailpiece is also Ebony, which is a nice addition, and it has four fine tuners with mother-of-pearl inlays.
On playing this violin, it is noticeably at a higher level than many other student instruments. The sound is rich and warm and has a powerful resonance. As a good beginner violin, it does take some beating for the price point.
This Violin is part of a starter package that includes two bows made from Brazilian wood that have Mongolian horsehair, and a chromatic tuner with a metronome. Also included are spare strings, an adjustable shoulder rest, spare bridges, and Rosin. It also comes with a nice case. It is priced a little higher than the average student violin. The better quality of sound and build, though, are apparent.
- Quality workmanship and an attractive antique-looking finish.
- Very nice sound.
- Some may prefer a lighter varnish.
10 D’Luca DL-45016 Meister Ebony Fitted Beginner Violin Outfit
Here is a student Violin from D’Luca that is built especially for the young beginner. D’Luca has built a 1/16th size instrument to suit the very young starter.
The back and sides are made from solid Maple, which gives a nice warm resonance. This is complemented by a carved Spruce top. Spruce is a much-used tonewood with Maple. Maple gives the violin a nice resonance, but Spruce adds that crisp top end.
The ‘F’ holes are hand-carved, and there is an attractive edging. The body is then varnished to provide an impressive looking Violin. The tuning pegs and chin rest are Ebony wood, as is the neck and the fingerboard. There are four nickel fine tuners on the tailpiece.
It comes as part of a package that also includes a case and the bow. This is made from Brazilwood and has Mongolian horsehair. It has a frog made from Ebony. Rosin to prepare the bow for use is also included.
This is a decent Violin package for the starter. The instrument is well-made with good materials and plays and sounds nice. It is set at a good price point as well, which makes it an attractive option.
- A good starter violin package.
- Well made with good materials.
- Some may not like the dark wood stain finish.
Best Violin For Kids Buyers Guide
Buying That First Violin
Now, this is a purchase that is going to be fraught with difficulties. If you are a violinist yourself, you will be able to decide on an instrument quite easily. For those who aren’t, it becomes more difficult. There are some things that are important, though, so let’s go through them…
The woods used will go a long way to determine the quality of the sound. Maple and Spruce are used a lot. On rare occasions, you might find mahogany or Ebony. Maple and Spruce though, do combine well to produce a quality sound.
Hardwood is better for the neck as this helps to resist any bend or warp. Ebony is a good choice. Usually, thee will be a lacquer used to give the Violin an antique look. This isn’t always a good idea after it has started to crack a little, so a good strong lacquer finish is worth seeing out.
Quality Of The Build
Not always easy to judge unless you know. Reviews on the product are a good place to start and see other opinions. Don’t get caught up on this ‘made in Asia’ syndrome. Some of the best instruments in the world are made there. And just like every single country that manufactures instruments, there are the good and the terrible.
Most manufacturers provide packages for starter instruments. These should include some sort of case, and you may get some spare strings. You will usually get a bow, and this is an often-overlooked item. If the bow is poor, then you will not get a good sound from the Violin.
The bow is critical. Try to make sure the bow is of a decent standard. It should have real horsehair, not any form of plastic. And while we are on the subject of the bow, you will need Rosin. Rosin is used for preparing the hair on the bow for use. You cannot use the bow without it. It is sometimes included if it isn’t, you need to find out where to get some. It’s not the sort of thing you get from the local supermarket.
There is a range. Quite a wide range. So set your budget. If it’s low, don’t expect a high-quality Violin. It is not going to happen. We have seen some decent violins at affordable prices, but hey cannot compete with the more expensive instruments. You will need to be a little forgiving of it if you buy a budget instrument. Especially with the intonation.
You need to choose an instrument that is going to be well-made and easy to play so that the student gets excited and is able to progress. As they play, they will improve, but the instrument needs to be playable. All of the violins we have looked at are playable to a lesser or greater level.
Other Options & Extras
So What’s The Best Violin For Kids?
We are going straight for a great instrument for our beginner. And whilst there were some excellent choices, one stood out with its build and sound as being the Best Kids Violin. A great violin to start but also to progress with. Our choice is, therefore, the…
An excellent instrument and the best beginner violin.