“What is the worst sound you can imagine? Finger nails scraping down a blackboard, a howling wolf, bagpipes(!), Eurovision contestants…

…or someone starting to learn the violin?

Well don’t worry. With a bit of patience, practice and a suitable instrument all will be fine.

You wouldn’t buy a 200mph supercar if you had just passed your driving test because it would be unsuitable. The same goes for buying instruments.  If you are about to start learning the violin, a Stradivarius (current auction prices £1.7m – £12m) would not be suitable as you might go too fast and crash it!


The principal of learning any musical instrument is similar; learn the basics of sound production; tempo; articulation (tuning) and; music theory.  In the case of the violin, through bowing and finger placement technique, posture and building the tonal quality and techniques to achieve a tuneful and enjoying outcome.

Children often start the learning process on a good quality 1/10, 1/8, 1/4/ or 1/2 size violin, depending on their size.  Some of the finest makes on offer are the ForenzaStentor and Stagg brands, expertly manufactured to achieve excellent results.

size chart

For adults starting out on the violin performance journey, the above brands all offer full sized models to suit any budget, with an exceptional hand made quality and professional specifications.

For example, two of our most popular student violin brands are the Stagg and Forenza Prima 2.  They are extremely popular with students and adult beginners. These models offer premium quality at an amazing price! They are produced using the finest sourced materials with a solid, carved spruce table with maple back and ribs, and are individually hand shaped and finished with traditional varnish. High level features such as ebony fingerboard and tuning pegs add a quality feel every time you play the instrument.  A strong bridge and alloy tailpiece with 4 internal adjusters support your intonation and technique to produce a musical performance.

forenza violin

They are perfect as the ultimate learning instrument and are capable of taking you up to intermediate grades. The Forenza and Stagg outfits come supplied with a strong solid wood bow, rosin and an attractive case as well as a dust cover. Definitely two of our most recommended violins covering both the aspect of great quality and incredible price.

Sitting in the mid-range of our excellent range of violins are the Stentor I 1400 & Stentor II 1500.

Stentor I 1400 Violin

The full size 1400 is a very popular model with our customers here at Normans. It is a really good quality instrument suitable for a beginner, allowing you to progress nicely through your grades or purely for your enjoyment. The 1400 Series include good-quality features while still remaining affordable. These violins are carved from solid spruce and maple creating a wonderful tone that resonates all through the well-built body. The fittings are made of blackened rosewood that provides a really nice feel when playing the violin. Of course, there is an alloy tailpiece with integral adjusters to help you achieve your perfect tone.

The additional features of the Stentor II 1500 series is no doubt, the best quality full size student violin we have available. It is the product of Stentor’s many years of experience in crafting world-class instruments and is incredibly popular with students everywhere as well as highly recommended by teachers. The 1500 model has a solid, carved spruce table and carved maple back, side and neck. There are ebony fittings included that will add a quality feel for a truly great playing experience. Individual hand shaping and finishing and traditional varnish are exactly what gives these violins its beautiful looks.

Stentor II Violin

The Stentor II 1500 Violin provides superb playability and creates a warm, pure and resonant tone that everyone will enjoy. The complete outfit comes with a quality case, resilient wooden bow, integral cover and some rosin. Strings are fitted and tensioned, and the durable bridge is set up, therefore, all you need to do is tune your violin to enjoy the great playing experience it has to offer. Without a doubt, this is one of the best student violins on the market and is perfect if you are willing to spend a little more to get more for your money.

So, don’t put it off any longer.  Music is the food of love, you’re hungry, and at Normans we have the worlds best menu!

music is the best menu!

About the author

Nick joined the Normans Sales Team after a musical career spanning 35 years; firstly as a principal trombonist in Her Majesty’s Royal Marines Band Service for 24 years, performing around the UK and worldwide, including on the Royal Yacht Britannia, and then within the education sector teaching GCSE and A Level Music and Music Technology. He is a keen Big Band, Jazz performer and Hi-Fi enthusiast.




  • John Smith 19/03/2018 at 8:12 am

    Great information is given by you in this post. I am looking this in formation and now have this. Thank you so much. Keep posting your great recommendations.