Violin Buying Guide

Violin Buying Guide


A high-quality violin is an essential investment that any aspiring violinist must make. Since violins are expensive instruments, it’s important to make sure you get the right instrument at the right price. Although most often considered a delicate and beautiful orchestral instrument and a trademark of classical music, it may also be a familiar and familiar folk or bluegrass violin, or a rock and roll instrument elegant and courageous. He has made a name for himself in almost every genre of music and has inspired musicians and audiences for centuries. Because of the wide range of prices for which violins are sold, it can be difficult to buy one. If you want advice on buying a violin or choosing a violin that’s right for you, you’re in the right place.

A Violin Is an Investment

First of all, remember that a violin is an investment. If you only consider the price without looking at the long-term benefits, you might end up with an instrument that looks more like a toy than a quality violin. If you can save money and spend a few hundred extra dollars, you’ll probably thank them later. And luckily, as you record or decide which violin you want to use, you’ll have other options to get you started.

Should I Rent or Buy?

If you’re shopping for a beginner, you might be tempted to rent an instrument because your student’s commitment is not proven. There are good reasons to opt for a purchase. These included:

  • Long-term rental fees can add up quickly. A perfectly playable entry-level violin can usually be purchased at less than the cost of a year’s rental.
  • A well-chosen, well-maintained beginner’s instrument will retain its value and will generally return a substantial portion of its purchase price when it is sold used or traded for a better quality instrument.
  • High-quality violins can gain value over time; their voices “open” as they age.
  • Rental instruments may be a little worse to wear with nicks, scuffs, ribbon marks on the sidelines, and come with used ropes and an already rosin bow. You are also responsible for any damage to a rented violin.

Used or New?

Once you’re ready to buy your own violin, it’s time to decide if a new or used instrument is right for you. Of course, your decision will depend on the possibility of finding violins used in acceptable condition to support your growth as a player. The advantage of finding a quality violin is that, in addition to saving money, you will probably find one that is already “broken in”. This has a somewhat mystical element (especially in the world of ancient instruments), but roughly speaking, it means that the wood has “adjusted” to the shape of the instrument, producing an increased resonance.

Violin Construction

In some respects, most violins are identical: four strings are stretched over a small body, a tailpiece and a chinstrap at one end and a neck and anklet at the other Most violins do not offer variations of design than many modern instruments, but any violinist will tell you that not all violins are created equal. The key factors that determine the timbre and playability of each violin are the quality of its sounds and the skill with which it is built.

Violin Accessories

Once you have chosen a suitable violin, the next step is to buy a bow, rosin and chin rest. A chin strap is optional. Let’s start by discussing the bow and rosin.

  1. The violin bow is crucial for producing quality sound. In fact, a good tone is directly related to the user’s ability to control the arc angle and subtle pressure changes applied perpendicular to the strings. You will want to find a bow that is both firm and supple. The flexibility is usually affected by the tightness of the hair of the bow (adjustable to the screw), but more precisely the wood itself will have a profound effect on the flexibility of the bow. As such, it’s important to experiment with different bows at your local music store to see what’s best for you. If in doubt, ask a local teacher or a violinist friend to help you with your choice.
  2. Rosin is the substance that is applied directly to the bristles to increase the friction between the bristles and the strings. It is this friction that makes the strings vibrate when the hair of the bow applies pressure perpendicular to the string.
  3. Chin rests are not a necessity, although it may be a good idea if you have tight neck muscles and if you intend to work for hours. From an anatomical point of view, a chin strap means that the neck is not in such a state of extreme lateral flexion, which can lead to malfunction over time. That being said, it is recommended that most people use a chin rest to make the game as comfortable as possible.

Violin Categories

Student Violins

In general, a student violin will be made from inferior wood and will involve much less handwork in carving, assembling and finishing. They usually have plastic parts such as pickets and footrests. These instruments are suitable for someone who is interested in learning, but who is not yet sure of playing a long time.

Intermediate Violins

The violins are classified as intermediate instruments. Some stores and brands omit this category and only distinguish student violins from professional violins. It is nevertheless a useful category for musicians who know they need something better than a beginner’s instrument, but who are not ready to invest thousands of dollars in a professional violin. Students who are progressing in their skills are typical buyers of the intermediate violin.

Professional Violins

Professional or master violins will be constructed from cold-drying, slow-drying wood, hand-crafted and assembled by a master luthier and finished with high-quality components such as an ebony fingerboard. a wooden tailpiece. The excellent materials and refined artistic skills that underpin these instruments increase their value and make them suitable instruments for advanced and professional musicians.

Acoustic vs. Electric Violins

The traditional acoustic violin stretches four strings from the chord ankle to the tailpiece, passing through a maple bridge that transmits sound vibrations to the soundboard. Although there are electric mics that can be mounted on an acoustic violin, a real violin has built-in mics to amplify the sound. To avoid resonance reactions in the hollow body of the violin, electric violins usually have a solid body and a minimalist design that allows them to lose weight.

An acoustic violin produces a warm, rounded sound thanks to the natural resonance of its woods. The electronic signal generated by an electric violin can be modified and improved, but it will generally produce a brighter, more sonic sound than its acoustic counterparts. Classical and folk musicians tend to prefer acoustic instruments, while rock and jazz musicians learn more about electric violins. Thanks to their plug-and-play ability, electric violins are a good choice for musicians playing with amplified groups.

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