Violin sizes vary based on the player’s age, height, and experience level. Use this guide to determine what size violin is right for you.
Checkout this video:
Children come in all shapes and sizes, and so do violins! The size of the violin you need depends on the age and height of the child. Here is a helpful guide to choosing the right size violin.
1/16 size for children under 4
You will need to take two measurements in order to determine what size violin is best for your child. The first measurement is the total length from the middle of the child’s collarbone (sternum) to the middle of the palm. The second measurement is from the neck, across the shoulder, and down the arm to the middle of the palm. With these two measurements, you can check a sizing chart to find the appropriate size violin.
1/16 size violins are recommended for children under 4 years old who have a total length of 15 inches (38 cm) or less, and an arm length of 13 inches (33 cm) or less.
1/8 size for children 4 to 6
The best way to determine what size violin is right for your child is to have him or her try different violins in a music store. Most music stores will allow you to rent a violin for a few months before you decide to purchase one. If you are purchasing a violin, be sure to ask about their return policy in case the instrument doesn’t work out.
Here are some general guidelines for sizing:
1/8 size for children 4 to 6
1/4 size for children 7 to 10
1/2 size for children 11 to 13
3/4 size for children 14 and up
1/4 size for children 6 to 8
The standard violin size is 4/4, meaning four-quarter size. This is the biggest violin and therefore has the lowest pitch. A full-size violin is sometimes too big for young children, so 1/4, 1/2, and 3/4 sizes are also available. The quarter-size violin is the smallest and has the highest pitch. It is meant for children aged 6 to 8. If your child is younger than 6 or taller than 4 feet 3 inches, you should consider getting a half-size or three-quarter-size instrument instead.
The size of the violin is proportional to the height of the player. So, the first thing you need to do is determine the height of the player. You can do this by measuring from the floor to the player’s chin. Once you have the player’s height, you can consult a size chart to find the appropriate size violin.
13 inches or less for a 1/16 size
If a child is less than 13 inches tall, a 1/16 size violin is the appropriate choice. This size has a string length of 9.5-10 inches. The 1/16 size violin is also recommended for small adults or those with small hands. A smaller adult who wants to learn the violin may also wish to purchase a 1/16 size so that he or she can have an instrument that is comfortable and manageable to hold.
14 inches for a 1/8 size
The 1/8 size violin is recommended for students with a height of approximately 14 inches. If your child is taller than 14 inches, you may want to consider a 1/4 size violin. If your child is shorter than 14 inches, you may want to consider a 1/16 size violin.
15 inches for a 1/4 size
The 1/4 size violin is recommended for children between the ages of 4 and 6. The appropriate height for a 1/4 size violin is 15 inches. This is measured from the floor to the middle of the scroll.
To determine the size violin you need, measure the distance from your neck to the center of your palm. This is your arm length. Once you know your arm length, you can determine the size of the violin you need.
Up to 12 inches for a 1/16 size
The 1/16 size is recommended for children up to 12 inches (30.5 cm) tall. If your child is between 30.5 and 45.7 cm, you can buy a 1/16 size and add an extender later if necessary. If your child is over 45.7 cm, go for the 1/10 size.
13 inches for a 1/8 size
The 1/8 size is the smallest recommended size for a student. If your child’s arm length is 13 inches or less, we recommend a 1/8 size violin. Your child can always move up to a larger size later, but it is important to start with an instrument that is the correct size. A 1/8 size violin has a shorter string length than a full-size violin and will be easier for your child to hold and play.
The string length of a 1/8 size violin is 10.5 inches, which is approximately 26 centimeters. The body of the instrument is smaller than a full-size violin, making it more comfortable for younger players. If your child’s arm length falls between 13 and 14 inches, we recommend trying out a 1/8 size violin to see if it is the right fit.
14 inches for a 1/4 size
A 1/4 size violin is the smallest available. They are recommended for children aged 4-7 or of average build who have small hands. The arm length required for a 1/4 size violin is 14 inches (35.56cm).
1/2 size violins are recommended for children aged 7-10 or of average build with medium sized hands. The arm length required for a 1/2 size violin is 16 inches (40.64cm).
3/4 size violins are recommended for children aged 10-13 or of larger build with large hands. The arm length required for a 3/4 size violin is 18 inches (45.72cm).