From beginners to intermediate
Please read our Setting up for success article.
At Cardiff Violins, we believe that the careful selection of student violas and beginner violas is crucial for the future enjoyment of music making. It has always been our policy to supply student violas and beginner violas that work very well, at affordable prices. For these reasons, we upgrade inexpensive Chinese instruments to a standard that work better than many non-upgraded instruments, such as Primavera, Westbury, Loreato, Piacenza, Conservatoire, Messina, Andreas Zeller, Antoni, Carlo Giordano and Stentor violins.
All the following instruments are very suitable as student violas or beginner violas, and as they go up in price, the violas also get better to meet the child’s increasing abilities. Rather than rigidly say “you need to change your viola by grade 3”, we prefer to leave the decision to the players, so that whenever the time or circumstances feel right for them, their teacher or their parents, they can come back and enjoy selecting their next instrument.
Please do not forget that we will take your first instrument in part-exchange (if you have bought it from us and it is in good condition), so do bring it along! If your first instrument was purchased somewhere else, we will try to help you by part-exchanging it, but cannot promise to do so, as it depends on the make and condition.
All fittings are ebony and the varnish has a satin finish. Complete with brazilwood bow and shaped polystyrene case, this is one of the ideal beginner violas. An upgraded alternative to Stentor violas in the same class. If in good condition, this viola can be part-exchanged for the next size or quality up.
SIZE 12” | 13” | 14” | 15” | 15 ½” | 16” PRICE: £ 250
Complete with a brazilwood viola bow and shaped viola case with blanket and 2 shoulder straps, it looks and sounds beautiful, and we feel it is definitely worth the minimal £25 difference with the Minuet! This upgraded viola surpasses the comparable violas in its class. Subject to condition, this viola can be part-exchanged when you need the next size or quality up.
SIZE 12’’ | 13’’ | 14’’ | 15’’ | 15 ½’’ | 16’’ PRICE £ 325
Complete with a better quality brazilwood bow and a plywood shaped case, it produces a very commanding sound, with clear projection. This viola has been partly upgraded, as the manufacturer's initial set-up was already quite advanced. Again a better value compared to Stentor Student violas. This viola is part exchangeable when you need the next size or quality up!
SIZE 15’’ | 15.5’’ | 16’’ PRICE £ 325 (without case) £ 380 (with case)
This is an up-graded version of the Vivace with a red-brown antique finish. Again, as the manufacturer's specifications are quite high, we only needed to partially upgrade it. This viola sounds as good as it looks, and comes with a brazil-wood bow and a plywood case. Superior to many other violas in the same category. This viola is part exchangeable subject to condition when the time to change comes.
SIZE 1/2 | 3/4 | 4/4 PRICE £ 575 (without case) £ 630 (with case)
FOR ALL INSTRUMENTS : If you order online, one of our musicians will select the best viola available on the day of your order. Please do not buy online if you can take advantage of the Assisted Purchase Scheme to save the VAT!