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Instrument Sizing

This section is intended to give you a rough idea of the size of instrument your child will require. Please note that this is a rough guide only. For best results, you should consult with The Sound Post staff or your teacher before purchasing or renting.

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Sizing Violins

Directions for Measuring: With your child's arm fully extended and parallel to the floor, measure in centimetres from the neck to the middle of the palm.

Size of Violin Measurement Average Age of Child
1/16 35-38 cm 3-4
1/10 39-42 cm 4-5
1/8 43-46 cm 5-6
1/4 47-51 cm 6-7
1/2 52-56 cm 7-8
3/4 57-60 cm 9-11
4/4 > 60 cm 11-13+

View our selection of student violins, ideal for beginners or amateurs.

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Sizing Violas

Directions for Measuring: With your child's arm fully extended and parallel to the floor, measure in centimetres from the neck to the middle of the palm.

Size of Viola Measurement
12" 53-55 cm
13" 55-59 cm
14" 59-63 cm
15" 63-65 cm
15 1/2" 65-67 cm
16" > 67 cm

View our selection of student violas, a perfect match for the beginners or amateurs.

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Sizing Cellos

Sizing cellos is slightly more complicated than sizing violins and violas. The student should be sitting at the edge of a chair such that the knees are bent at a ninety degree angle. The upper edge of the instrument should rest in the centre of the chest (on the sternum) and the C peg should be slightly behind the left ear. The knees should lightly grip the lower bouts ensuring that the corners do not dig into the side of legs. (Corners should be slightly above the inside of the knees). The student should be able to reach both ends of the fingerboard with ease.

The chart below shows approximiate sizing by age. Please note that there are are two separate sizing systems for Cellos. The Suzuki sizing sizing system is approximately equivalent to one size below below the traditional European sizing system.

European Sizing Suzuki Sizing Age of Child
-- 1/10 3-4
1/10 1/8 4-5
1/8 1/4 5-6
1/4 1/2 6-8
1/2 -- 8-10
3/4 -- 10-12
4/4 -- 12-13+

Note: 7/8 size cellos are sometimes available as well. This can be a useful transitional size or a more comfortable option for those adults who prefer a slightly smaller instrument.

View our selection of student cellos, ideal for the beginners or amateurs.

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Sizing Basses

The 3/4 size bass is the standard size for adults. 7/8 size basses and 4/4 sizes basses are made but they are less commonly used. Occasionally we have 7/8 size basses available for rent. There are also smaller sizes available for younger students.

As a rough guideline, when both the bass and the player are standing upright, the bridge should be approximately at the same height as the large knuckles of the student's right hand. The most important issue is that the instrument is comfortable and that the student can reach the higher registers of the fingerboard without difficulty.

The chart below shows approximate sizing by age:

Size of Bass Age of Child
1/8 5-7
1/4 7-9
1/2 9-13
3/4 13+

View our selection of student basses, an excellent choice for a beginner or amateur.

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