Are you looking for a new chin rest for your violin? Finding your current one uncomfortable or maybe it’s even giving you an allergic reaction? You’re not alone as every violinist goes through a similar thing trying to find the best and most comfortable violin chin rest that suits them and their playing.
In this post, we’re going through and reviewing 6 of the best violin chin rests to help you find one that fits you and you’re playing style.
Quick Answer: The Best Chin Rests for a Violin
The Top Violin Chin Rest Reviews
Before we get to our violin chin rest buying guide where we’ll talk you through everything you need to know before buying, first, we review our favorite violin chin rests currently on the market.
1. Wittner Composite Violin Chin Rest
- Package Dimensions: 2.032 H x 16.764 L x 8.89 W (centimetres)
- Package Weight: 0.45 pounds
At number one, we have the Wittner Composite violin chin rest which is an affordable choice for violinists of all ages and levels. It’s hypoallergenic, so you shouldn’t have to worry about having a bad reaction to it. You’ll mount the chin rest on the side of your violin so it’s easy to attach to the left of the tailpiece.
This chin rest’s composite material is great for a lot of people. It won’t crack like wood, so you can use it for a long time. This is a nice option if you don’t like your current chin rest or if your violin doesn’t have one at all.
2. SAS Ebony Chinrest for Violin
- Fits 3/4-4/4 Violins and Viola
- Beautifully Crafted Ebony
- Elegant Gold-Plated Single Barrel Bracket
If you want a chin rest you can use on your current violin and any future upgrades, try the SAS Ebony Chinrest for 3/4-4/4 Violin. It’s the perfect size to work on violins of those two sizes, so you don’t need to have a specific model to give it a try.
You can attach it with a single barrel bracket, and the gold won’t tarnish like silver. The plate is 32 millimeters high, but you can adjust it. That way, you’ll be able to play your violin comfortably and not struggle to keep the instrument in place. And if you ever decide to learn the viola, you can use this chin rest on it as well.
3. Flat Flesch Violin Chin rest
- Flat Flesch-style
- Rosewood - crafted from the finest Indian woods
- Standard bracket
The Flat Flesch 3/4-4/4 Violin Chinrest is another excellent model for the two biggest violin sizes. You mount this chin rest on the center at the end of the tailpiece using a standard bracket. Its rosewood finish looks beautiful and can be very comfortable.
This chin rest comes with a mounting tool, so you can easily put it on your violin. It can sit a little high on a 3/4 violin, but it’s a good fit for a full size. This chinrest is also pretty affordable, so you can experiment with it to find the right position, and it’s not a huge loss if you don’t love it.
4. Soarun Black Violin Chin Rest
- Ebony - crafted from the finest Indian woods.
- With standard bracket, easy to attach to violin.
- Smooth and durable
One of the most affordable violin chinrests is the Soarun Black model. This one comes with a standard mount, so you can attach it to the center of your violin. It’s an ebony model, which means it will fit right in with the other ebony fittings on your instrument.
The chinrest is very durable, so you can use it for a long time without any issues. It also has a smooth finish, so you can play your violin comfortably for a long time. However, you will need to have a 4/4 violin for this to fit.
5. Flat Flesch Violin Chinrest
- Flat Flesch-style
- Ebony - crafted from the finest Indian woods
- Standard bracket
The Flat Flesch 4/4 Violin Chinrest is yet another option to consider, especially if you prefer a center mount chinrest. It uses ebony to match the tailpiece and fingerboard of your violin, and it’s very affordable.
You’ll get a standard bracket that you can use to attach the chinrest to your violin. It looks and feels nice, so you don’t have to worry about your chin itching after you play. Instead, you can focus on the music.
6. Wittner WITT253111 Violin Centered Mounting Chinrest
- Antiallergic, anatomically designed, made of "high-tech" composite material.
- Includes a Wittner nylon tail gut - tail cord
- Manufactured in Germany
Another center mount chinrest to consider is the Wittner WITT253111 Violin Centered Mounting. It uses a composite material, which is great if you’re sensitive to certain woods. And you don’t have to worry about it cracking like wood can.
However, this model only fits on 4/4 violins. Luckily, there’s a similar model available for 1/4 and 1/2 size violins. That way, you can get the same benefits as the main model, but you don’t need to play an instrument that’s too big.
How to Choose a Violin Chin Rest: A Buyer’s Guide
The chin rest is an integral violin part that is often overlooked by many violinists.
Chin rests are typically included with violins when they are being sold and so many players adjust to the chin rests that are included with their violins rather than choosing the chin rests that work for their unique needs.
There are a multitude of chin rests that are available for violins, in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors, and more.
As you are shopping for a chin rest for your violin, understand that there aren’t any right or wrong choices.
Selecting a chin rest for your instrument comes down to your personal preferences and what you are the most comfortable with.
With that in mind, here are a few things that will help guide you along your journey in choosing the right chin rest for you and your needs.
The Different Types of Violin Chin Rests
There are many types of chin rests that are available for violins, with their main differences being in their heights and positions on the violin.
Height of The Chin Rest
As you are shopping for a chin rest for your violin, you will find three different heights:
The height of a chin rest describes how high the base of the chin rest sits from the body of a violin.
Your choice of chin rest height depends on your unique dimensions and comfort preferences.
If you have a shorter neck, for example, then you may prefer a low chin rest for your violin.
Position of the Chin Rest: Side Mount vs Center Mounted
Chin rests are mated to the bodies of violins using a bracket system. There are side-mounted, over-the-tailpiece, and center-mounted chin rests that are available for violins. Side-mounted chin rests are mounted on the bottom side of a violin’s body. Over-the-tailpiece chin rests are mounted over a violin’s tailpiece but are positioned towards the side of the violin. Center-mounted chin rests are mounted over a violin’s tailpiece and are positioned exactly over the violin’s tailpiece as well.
Chin Rest Size
The size that you choose for your violin’s chin rest will depend on your jaw’s structure and size.
Over-the-tailpiece chin rests, as a result of their designs, tend to be the largest chin rests, however, there isn’t a universal size scale for chin rests.
There are a multitude of options that are available to you, no matter what size or structure your jaw has.
If you have a larger jaw, for example, then you may be more comfortable with a larger chin rest that also has a more curved design.
If your jaw has more flesh, then you may appreciate a chin rest that is flatter in its shape, allowing your jaw to sit on top of the chin rest itself.
Similarly, if your jawline is small, then you may prefer a smaller chin rest that hugs your jaw more.
Chin Rest Materials
Chin rests can be made out of several different materials depending on preference and budget.
The chin rests that you will usually find on violins from their manufacturers are made of plastic.
These chin rests cater to a wider range of customer needs and provide a cheap and simple solution for violinists.
Plastic chin rests are easy to wipe off and clean after you’ve played, however, what makes plastic chin rests advantageous can also cause them to be a problem for many violinists, as their smooth finishes allow them to slide easily under moist skin.
If your skin produces a lot of oil, or if you sweat a lot as you are playing, then you may experience more difficulties with plastic chin rests than their alternatives, wooden chin rests.
Wooden chin rests are typically more expensive for manufacturers to develop than plastic chin rests.
Many of the wooden chin rests that you will find on the market have been carved into their shapes rather than placed into pre-fabricated molds.
Wooden chin rests, as a result of the natural pores of their materials, can absorb moisture more easily.
However, this also makes them somewhat more delicate than plastic chin rests and harder to clean as well.
You will be able to find wooden chin rests that are made from a variety of different wood types with the most common being Ebony, Boxwood, and Rosewood.
As a violinist, it is possible for you to have an allergic reaction because of your instrument’s chin rest.
Your chin rest will make direct contact with your skin as you play your violin and while it may be rare, it is possible for a violinist to be allergic to the material that their violin’s chin rest is made of, especially with the various types of wood that are used to make chin rests.
If your skin is naturally sweaty or oily, then it will certainly help for you to routinely wipe the chin rest of your violin off as you play.
The sweat and oil of your skin can become trapped between your chin and the chin rest as you are playing, potentially causing your skin to break out or form a rash.
If you find that your violin’s chin rest is uncomfortable you can try using a different shape chin rest.
But if you like the shape and it’s still uncomfortable to use after an extended period of playing time, then you can purchase a cover for the chin rest.
Utilizing a chin rest cover on your violin’s chin rest is a great alternative to purchasing a new chin rest if comfort is your biggest concern.
Chinrest covers are available with many different materials and varieties and are also great at absorbing moisture and are easily washable depending on the material that you select.
Some violin chin rest covers attach to the body of the violin while others attach right to the chin rest itself.
We’d recommend something like this which will help to increase the comfort.
- The GelRest is extremely durable and its contoured, non-slip surface makes holding your instrument effortless
As you are shopping for a chin rest cover, test out the cover on your violin’s chin rest.
Make sure that the cover that you choose is comfortable and has enough padding for your needs.
The size and height of your violin’s chin rest will play an important role in how your violin will fit within its case.
If the chin rest of your violin is too high, then your violin case may not close properly, or the violin may fit too tightly within the case.
It is possible for you to disassemble your violin’s chin rest every time you need to pack your violin into its case, but this can be very tedious and unnecessary as well.
While many violin cases are designed to fit violins with a variety of chin rest sizes, the way your violin will fit into its case with your new chin rest is something that you will need to keep in mind as you are shopping for a new chin rest.
Chin rests are built very well and last for exceptionally long times.
You should expect the chin rest of your violin to possibly outlast the violin itself with proper care.
Chin rests have metal components on their brackets, so keeping moisture away from your violin’s chin rest will prevent its bracket from rusting.
Similarly, if your violin’s chin rest is coated with any material, routinely wiping the chin rest off will protect its coating as well.
Check out our guide to cleaning a violin here for more information on maintenance.
The prices of violin chin rests vary based on the materials that are used and their mounting structures but they are relatively inexpensive compared to other violin accessories.
High-quality chin rests that are wooden and have gold-plated mounting brackets, for example, are on the higher end of the price scale.
The average chin rest price lies between $10 and $50, with the higher end allowing you to purchase a stylish chin rest with quality materials.
Which One Should You Buy?
If you find your current setup a little uncomfortable, consider upgrading yours to one of the violin chin rests we’ve covered above.
Whether you’re a beginner or professional, you deserve to have gear that works for you.
That way, you can focus on producing the best music instead of on your pain or discomfort.
When looking for an affordable upgrade to your violin, you should look at some of the best violin chin rest reviews.
Compare them to your current one and to each other. Some are more comfortable or of better quality than others.
If you’re still on the fence about which one to buy, we’d recommend that the best one to try is the Wittner Composite model.
However, don’t be afraid to try a few options to find one that suits you and your playing.
They’re not too expensive so it’s worth the investment to be comfortable when you’re playing..
- Package Dimensions: 2.032 H x 16.764 L x 8.89 W (centimetres)
- Package Weight: 0.45 pounds