cecilio vs mendini
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Cecilio vs Mendini [Which Violin Brand is Better?]

In this Cecilio vs Mendini violin review, we’ll consider their features and evaluate which one is the right fit for your needs.

Which Violin Brand Should You Buy? Cecilio or Mendini?

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Direct Comparison of the 2 Brands:







Cecilio Logo Large range of sizes Design and quality are great Comes in a variety of colors Good for intermediate players Check the Latest Reviews!
Mendini Logo Decent variations in size Decent quality Several vibrant colors Teacher approved. Good for starters Check the Latest Reviews!

Let’s face it. Choosing a violin is not always a straightforward process, especially when you’re presented with a multitude of choices. However, that’s not the focus of this Mendini vs Cecilio violin review.

We’ll look at two notable brands, both of which are suitable for beginners and intermediate players. We’ll consider their features and evaluate which one fares better than the other.

We certainly hope you benefit from the information we provide in this article! Just so you know, we may receive compensation if you use the links on this page. If you do, thank you so much!

Cecilio Logo

About the Cecilio Company

Crafted by skilled luthiers who have inherited a centuries-old technique, Cecilio violins are some of the best string instruments on the market.  These violins are available in different sizes, from size 1/32 up to 4/4 for the biggest of hands.

What stands out about Cecilio is that they produce violins for all levels. And for this reason, they’re widely adored by thousands of educators and music instructors, who in turn and recommend them to their students.

The name Cecilio is derived from St Cecilia, who’s the patron saint of music. So where are Cecilio violins made? They’re made in Rancho Cucamonga, California.

Each instrument is then tested vigorously against strict quality standards at a Los Angeles distribution center before being sold.

Some of Cecilio’s most famous violins include Cecilio CVN-300 and Cecilio CVN-500. Both are 4/4-size (full-size) violins with antique varnish. The tops are made from spruce wood, and their backs are made from maple.

The CVN 300 has an exceptional tone and resonance, while the CVN-500 is a reliable and useful instrument. Any student who is just starting to learn how to play the violin will find either of them comfortable to play and durable.

Mendini Logo

About the Mendini Brand

Still part of the Cecilio brand, Mendini violins are low-cost and all-purpose instruments that are designed for students who want to learn the violin without worrying about the costs of replacing strings or maintenance in general.

They include all the necessities for a starter. Though not as highly regarded as the Cecilio violins, this type possesses excellent tonal quality and can create an exciting sound that will beautifully resonate when appropriately tuned.

Like its counterpart, this line of violins is available in various sizes. So, a student can choose one that not only suits their budget but their hand-size as well. Two of its most popular violins include the Mendini MV500 and the Mendini MV400.

Both are made from solid wood and come with an extra bridge. Made from Brazilwood, their bows also have unbleached horsehair.

At the time of writing this review, both had amassed hundreds of great reviews at Amazon. That speaks volumes about the confidence that learners have using this line of violins.

What are good quality violin brands?

If you’re looking for good quality violins that can help you learn and transition into a pro performer at your pace, the Mendini and Cecilio brands offer excellent choices of good quality violins.

One way to look at the major differences is to note Cecilio violins are available at a more premium price. useful for intermediate learners who don’t mind the cost. In contrast, Mendini violins are the cheaper option and suitable for cost-conscious learners.

Breaking Down the Two Top Violin Brands

Cecilio and Mendini have respective strengths and weaknesses. In this review, we’ll look at how each fare in regard to five things; size, quality, pricing, material, and learning. Here we go:

Sizes Available

Violins are available in a range of sizes, such as 3/4 size, 1/2 size, 1/2 size, 4/4 size, and 4/4 size (full size).  These correspond to body size and arm size. So, an adult can go for the 4/4 full size while a beginner will use the smaller 1/4 size violin.

When shopping around, look for a violin size that you can handle and play comfortably, whether a student beginner or an intermediate player.


This brand is available in four sizes, but it doesn’t have the size 4/4. So, if you’re upgrading from size 3/4, you may have to jump to size 4/4 (full size).


On the other hand, Cecilio strikes the right chords when it comes to sizes. They’re available in different sizes to satisfy the different need of players. With its range of sizes, Cecilio lets you find and play a violin of your size.

WINNER: Cecilio

Overall Violin Quality

When shopping for a violin, don’t ignore its quality as it could mean the difference between delivering an enjoyable orchestral performance and getting booed off the stage.

Quality spans the whole gamut from design to the choice of material to the nature of bows, pegs, tailpiece, fingerboard, and other parts. Each of these parts contributes to the sound quality, and each will influence your performance too.


If you’re more concerned about costs than performance, Mendini might serve you best. Its saving glory may be its warm tone. It has some decent components and reliable parts.

Low-cost models are factory made, and the problem with this is they may not get the attention that handcrafted violins get. As a starter’s violin, you will make mistakes. So, expect some repairs and part replacement from time to time.


Handcrafted by skilled luthiers and made from the most beautiful hardwood, Cecilio has all the hallmarks of a premium quality violin. And that even reflects its pricing. Each instrument is tested thoroughly before being released to the market.

The testing explains why music teachers and intermediate players have so much confidence in the product. Though this line is a bit expensive, it will serve you well for years and give you your money’s worth.

WINNER: Cecilio

Compare Popular Cecilio Violin Models:

Available Colors

Violins come in natural colors and in varnish. Though they have no bearing on a violin’s performance, colors leave an impression among younger players. And it could even give them the motivation to play their instruments regularly as they admire the color.

Many of them will be attracted to violins with fancy colors. Unless you’re performing in an orchestra where you desire color uniformity, this shouldn’t be a problem when buying a learner’s violin.


It’s available in a decent number of colors, including white and pink, which kids may find attractive. So, you have lots of options to choose when you’re ordering one. Our only concern is the extra varnish may muffle the sound.


On the other hand, Cecilio is mostly available in natural colors (brown) and with varnish. A mature player may not see this as a problem. But for a young learner who’s dazzled by colors, this line of violin may not give them the incentive to want to play their instrument regularly.

WINNER: Mendini

Learning Level

No one is born with an innate ability to play the violin. Even the best performers started from the basics, fumbling with the strings and struggling to hit the right notes. So learning is part and parcel of playing the violin.


When you’re starting, you want to get a violin that will help you learn and transition into an intermediate player, not one to produce high-class performances at an orchestra. And Mendini seems to be the right model. It’s commonly regarded as a beginner’s violin because it’s cheaper.


Handcrafted by skilled luthiers and rigorously tested, Cecilio violins are suitable for orchestral performances. It’s teacher-approved and commonly used by advanced students or professional performers.

WINNER: Mendini – hands down

And that answers the question: who makes the best student violin?

Compare Popular Mendini Violin Models:

Violin Build Strength

When buying a violin, it’s advisable to get one that will endure the rigors of your performances. A stronger violin will also last for years because of its sturdy nature. It will be less prone to problems. This also applies to the choice of accessories, including your violin bow.


Though made from quality material such as maple for the back and sides and spruce for the top, Mendini has a medium-strength bow. It might serve you a few years, but it’s going to take effort to keep it in good shape. Expect strings to snap and even the bow to break from time to time.


Handcrafted and sturdier than its counterpart, Cecilio is the kind of violin you would want to have as an intermediate student who’s turning pro. It’s crafted from the best hardwoods, and the result is a solid construction that will last a long time.

Some players even pass it down while still in top shape, even after years of vigorous use.

WINNER: Cecilio

Final Recount of Pros and Cons

As we wind up this Cecilio vs Mendini comparison, it’s apparent that one violin stands head and shoulders above the other:

Cecilio Logo

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3 out of 5 stars


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What We Like

  • Large range of sizes
  • Design and quality are great
  • Good for intermediate players

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What We Don’t Like

  • More sensitive to climate variations
  • Some accessories may need an upgrade
  • Strings may need to be changed right away

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Mendini Logo

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2 out of 5 stars


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What We Like

  • Several vibrant colors
  • Teacher approved. Good for starters
  • Budget friendly

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What We Don’t Like

  • Relatively limited sizes available
  • Bow quality can be poor
  • Factory strings break easily

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Final Verdict: Which Violin Brand is Better?

When we look at the specifics of the details between the two brands and consider the overall best value, we have to go with Cecilio Violins as our favorite.

Lucky for you, given that violins are fragile instruments and can get damaged in the shipping process, both violin makers give their buyers a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty.

Cecilio Logo

Cecilio CVN-300 Solidwood Ebony Fitted Violin with D'Addario Prelude...

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  • Overall Build Quality
  • Overall Sound Quality
  • Overall Value Factor


Overall Average Score:

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Chief editor at newviolinist.com

Amanda has been chief editor for NewViolinist since 2016. Since then, she and her team have helped thousands of musicians learn more about their instruments and achieve their own musical goals.