top 5 cellos
The cello is one of the most beautiful instruments there is. A good cello isn’t just capable of producing a wonderful sound; it will also make a great addition to your décor. There’s nothing like putting up your cello for all to see, and then taking it down and showing off your skills to anyone who asks. But before that day comes you need to invest in a quality cello. You could rent one, but if you’re a dedicated learner, your rental costs will quickly add up to more than the price of a new cello.
TOP
  • CECILIO CCO-100
  • Price: See Here
  • Beautiful appearance
  • Lovely sound
  • Comes with variety of accessories
BEST VALUE
  • Crescent 4/4
  • Price: See Here
  • Looks good
  • Comes fully-loaded
  • Highly affordable
  • Merano 4/4
  • Price: See Here
  • Easy to produce beautiful music
  • Looks attractive
  • Includes superior accessory variety

When cellos had to be hand-crafted by artisans only the most elite members of society could afford to own their own. But thanks to recent advances in manufacturing now just about anyone can afford a cello of their own. Still, if you want to find a cello that is well made and affordable, you need to do your research. Not every cello is worth the asking price. With dozens of brands making a wide variety of cellos it can be difficult to choose. That’s why we are here to help. We looked at all the cellos on the market, carefully examining them and picking the best options. You’ll find reviews of the five best cellos in our guide, along with a treasure trove of information that every cello shopper should know.

You deserve a cello that can help you reach your full potential. Whether you are just starting out or looking to turn pro, you need an instrument that produces the best sound possible. In this guide, you will learn what the top cello manufacturers are, what you need to look for when cello shopping, and tips on how to take care of your new cello. If this sounds useful, then read on to discover which cello is right for you.

TOP 5 CELLOS

CECILIO CCO-100 STUDENT CELLO

FEATURES

A full-size cello (4/4).

Spruce top.

Maple neck, back, side, fingerboard, and pegs.

Alloy tailpiece, which comes with four tuners built in.

Finished with a high-luster varnish.

Inlaid purfling.

Available colors include natural,

The Cecilio CCO-100 Student Cello comes with a variety of accessories to get you started. The package includes a carrying case, bow, rosin, bridge, stand, and replacement strings.

Includes adjustable end pin.

22.4-pound shipping weight, accessories included.

Cecilio covers their product with a 1-year warranty.

CONS

Can be difficult to tune. Not much of an issue for experienced players but it can cause a bit of trouble for beginners. Without proper rosin application, the tuning pegs can slip.

Not the most durable instrument. It looks beautiful and feels fine out of the box but if you want it to stay that way you have to treat it well.

Some assembly required. This is standard when shipping cellos, but it is worth keeping in mind.

Full-size might be too large for children under 12 years of age. Smaller scale versions are available.

Certain colors are less common than others. You might have to pay more for the color you want if you are interested in something other than the standard natural look.

Accessory quality is uneven. It is clear that the accessories were chosen for their affordability, not quality. They will all serve a beginner well but serious musicians should plan on upgrading things like the strings and stand sooner eventually.

PROS

Made to hold a tune. Once this instrument is properly tuned, it will stay tuned. It’s is just what any performing musician needs.

The Cecilio CCO-100 Student Cello is a truly beautiful instrument. It is made with high-quality wood and finished with a truly lustrous varnishing.

Built with real wood. This isn’t a synthetic instrument; it’s made with spruce and maple.

Made to hold up under regular use. If it’s stored and carried carefully this cello can keep making beautiful music for years. It’s a solid investment.

Full-size makes this instrument suitable for learners and professionals alike.

Comes in a wide variety of colors. You don’t have to stick with the natural, wood color. You can choose the right color to express your personality.

Comes with all of the accessories you need to start playing as soon as you get it.

The included case has everything a student needs. The straps allow you to wear it like a backpack and it has pockets that are perfect for holding sheet music and other accessories.

Cecilio is so confident in their product that they cover it for a year. The warranty that protects against any defects related to manufacturing.

Anyone looking to start learning the cellos should consider the Cecilio CCO-100 Student Cello. It’s not just a great instrument; it’s an entire kit that provides everything an aspiring cellist needs to succeed. The first thing you notice is the beautiful appearance. This instrument is made with real wood, maple, and spruce. The wood is carefully finished for a shiny and durable appearance that will hold up under heavy use. If you take care of this instrument, it will take care of you. Once it’s properly tuned, it holds that tune as long as you could hope. On top of the cello itself buyers get a range of accessories. Basics like the bow, rosin, and a bridge are all necessary. Other extras like a case, stand, and extra string sweeten the deal. All of these factors add up to our top option. All of the instruments on our list have their strengths, but if you want the most well-rounded option, then you don’t need to look any further than the Cecilio CCO-100 Student Cello.

Melissa

Editor, Musical Instruments Expert

%

Overall

%

Usability

%

Quality

%

Price

CRESCENT 4/4 BEGINNER CELLO

FEATURES

A full-size cello (4/4).

Spruce top.

Maple back, neck and side.

Rosewood, fingerboard, and pegs.

Includes alloy tailpiece and 4 fine tuners.

Finished with a high-luster varnish.

Available in deep red natural wood color.

The Crescent 4/4 Beginner Cello Starter Kit includes accessories. These are a carrying bag, bow, rosin, bridge, extra strings, and a stand.

Includes adjustable endpin.

16-pound shipping weight, accessories included.

CRESCENT 4/4 BEGINNER CELLO

CONS

No advertised warranty. The manufacturer provides no proof of support. If you want to make a protected purchase you have to arrange that with the seller. This makes purchasing this instrument a bit of a gamble.

Can be difficult to tune. The scroll pins aren’t the highest quality, so it takes some time to get things right.

Ships without padding. May arrived damage depending on treatment during the shipping process.

The bridge has to be set as part of instrument setup. This can be difficult to people unused to the process and may require professional assistance.

Full-size might be a little unwieldy for younger, elementary-age players.

Mediocre string quality. Ships with strings that aren’t the best on the market. If you want to get the best playing experience, you will have to buy new, higher grade strings.

Accessory quality is all over the board. The case is nice, but the strings and the bow aren’t the

Strings are set up for a right-handed player. If you are left-handed, you will have to re-string it yourself.

The case carries the cello, but that’s about it. It includes very little.

PROS

Full-size design makes this an instrument fit for beginners and pros alike. Even young children can grow into it.

Looks very attractive. The color is a nice, rich red that brings out the beauty of the wood used in the construction. The use of real wood is clear. This definitely looks the way a cello should look, and once it’s on its stand it makes an attractive addition to any room.

Comes pre-stringed to save time during setup. All together the Crescent 4/4 Beginner Cello will be ready to play within minutes of its unboxing.

Ships with all of the accessories that a cello player could need. There’s a bow, extra strings, rosin, bridge, stand, and a carrying case.

The bridge and the bow are for playing, the strings and the rosin are for maintenance, and the stand and case are for safe keeping.

The included bow is made with real Brazil wood and horsehair.

One of the best prices for a new cello on the market. Musicians who choose this over a rental instrument will see their investment pay off in a matter of months.

The Crescent 4/4 Beginner Cello is a fantastic purchase for anyone who wants to learn the cello without wasting money on an overpriced rental instrument. This package has everything you need to get started. The cello itself is sturdy and attractive, and it comes with all the add-ons you need to play. They aren’t the most expensive accessories, but if you feel the need to upgrade that’s easy enough, the important thing is the sturdy nature of the cello itself. Professionals may find quality issues to quibble about, but this cello is more than sufficient for students. The one thing you do have to keep in mind is a lack of warranty; you have to decide whether the risk is worth it or not. Still, when you balance all of these features with the standard asking price, you get this guide’s best buy. Any bargain hunters should snap this up. Anyone who buys it will get a great cello at an even better price.

Melissa

Editor, Musical Instruments Expert

%

Overall

%

Usability

%

Quality

%

Price

MERANO 4/4 SIZE CELLO

FEATURES

A full-size cello (4/4).

Spruce top.

Maple back, neck and side.

Black hardwood fingerboard and pegs.

Includes alloy tailpiece with 4 fine tuners built in.

Finished with shining and durable varnish.

Available in an attractive natural red color.

Merano 4/4 Size Cello ships with accessories included. The full list includes a hard case, soft case, bow, rosin, bridge, extra strings, music stand, cello stand, mute, and metronome.

Includes endpin.

27.1-pound shipping weight, accessories included.

CONS

You have to install the bridge yourself.

Strings sit a little high up from the fingerboard. Cello nut may need to be adjusted or sanded to let the strings sit closer.

May require help from an instrument maintenance professional before it can produce the best possible sound quality.

Tuning pegs have to be properly maintained and adjusted to produce the proper sound.

Minor blemishes can be found when carefully examining the varnish.

Accessories vary in quality, and all are cheaper than the cello itself.

The bow is prone to snapping, be careful when tightening it or budget for a better bow.

Strings are cheap. They work OK at the start but are bound to snap. There are extras included, but the two sets won’t last as long as one quality set of strings.

No listed warranty. Neither the product page or Merano’s home page lists a warranty. If you want any written quality assurance, you need to get it from the seller.

PROS

Looks very attractive. The finish accentuates the natural red of the wood to create an instrument that looks and feels great.

Comes with strings already installed for easy use.

Cello comes packaged for safe shipment. Little chance of damage on the way from the warehouse to your door.

Ships with plenty of accessories. The package includes a bow, hard case, soft case, music stand, cello stand, metronome, rosin, extra strings, and mute. Few packages can compete with this in terms of the number of accessories included.

The included mute allows you to practice in relative silence. Perfect for anyone who lives in an apartment building or crowded house. No need for loud practices.

The fact that it comes with both a hard case and bag allows for options in how you transport it. The hard case offers ultimate protection while the bag is lighter and easier to carry. Choose the right case for the situation at hand!

The soft case is made with a 600-denier nylon and comes with two accessory pockets, shoulder straps, and wheels. Perfect for carrying your cello to practice and performances.

Great quality for the price point.

Any musician looking for a fully-loaded cello package. Most cellos come with things like a bow and a bridge, but this package goes above and beyond the call of duty. You don’t get just one bag; you get two that you can use to protect your cello in transit. Perfect for any band member who is planning on a decent amount of travel. The number of accessories in this package is the first thing that catches your attention online, but in person, the quality of the cello itself definitely stands out. This is a beautifully crafted instrument that is capable of producing some incredible sounds. Like any instrument, it takes some time to set up and get used to. But once you’ve got it prepped and tuned up it’s as easy to play as a cello can be. Anyone who wants to set themselves up for cello success with just one purchase should invest in the Merano 4/4 Size Cello.

Melissa

Editor, Musical Instruments Expert

%

Overall

%

Usability

%

Quality

%

Price

D’LUCA MC100-4/4 MEISTER STUDENT CELLO

FEATURES

A full-size cello (4/4).

Maple back, neck, side, and bridge.

Rosewood fingerboard, pegs, fitting, and end pin.

Finished with attractive varnish.

Comes in a dark, rich cherry color.

D’Luca MC100-4/4 Meister Student Cello package includes extra accessories. These include a portable cello stand, padded bag, extra strings, chromatic tuner, rosin, and bow.

Includes adjustable endpin.

18.9-pound shipping weight, accessories included.

CONS

Bridge and tailpiece are not set up before shipment. They must be put in place after delivery. If you don’t know how to install these pieces, you should budget for professional help.

The nut is a bit high, most will have to lower it to play it naturally. Unfortunately, the nut grooves are also shallow, compounding the issue. It won’t bother everyone but it can be problematic

Can have trouble staying in tune. Might frustrate people who hate tuning.

Slightly rough appearance. Likely to come with a few blemishes, blisters, and splinters. Minor stuff that you won’t notice from a distance but will see when you’re close up.

Reports of incorrect sizing. Some buyers receive the wrong size, or a mismatch between the cello and the bridge. If you order this cello, you’ll need to double check to make sure you received the right size. Errors can be fixed if they are noticed early.

No listed warranty. They say they have a quality guarantee and have a track record of good customer service but it’s still a bit of a risk.

PROS

Produces a very nice, rich sound when properly tuned.

The instrument looks very nice. The color is rich and appealing. It’s just what a cello should look like.

Varnish produces a shiny appearance that looks especially nice under lights.

Large, easy to use tuning pegs make it as easy as possible to tune.

Full 4/4 size is suited perfectly for the average musician. From middle schoolers to professional this is the standard size for bands and orchestras.

Adjustable endpin allows musicians of varying heights to comfortably play this cello.

Good customer service. If you have a problem with your product it’s relatively easy to contact D’Luca Music and arrange a solution.

Ships with just about all of the accessories you could need. It even includes a clip-on chromatic tuner, which isn’t something commonly included with cellos.

The clip-on tuner makes tuning your instrument as easy as possible since it’s hands-free.

This cello from D’Luca is the definition of a beginner’s instrument. It isn’t the highest quality cello on the market, but it does provide the features and accessories every budding cellist needs at an affordable price. The cello is definitely appealing from first sight. The color is beautiful, and when you hear it tuned and played correctly, it sounds as lovely as it looks. Just know that it can take some time to get the instrument set up the way you like it. You should also note that there isn’t a warranty on the listing or company page, but they are easy to get in touch with if you have any issues. To get the most out of this instrument you need to put some time into it and consider upgrading the accessories, but once you do you’ll have an instrument that can take you can learn on.

Melissa

Editor, Musical Instruments Expert

%

Overall

%

Usability

%

Quality

%

Price

D Z STRAD CELLO

FEATURES

A full-size cello (4/4)

Handcrafted from solid carved wood.

Ebony fingerboard and fittings.

Finished so it’s shining and red.

The D Z strad Cello ships with accessories. In addition to the cello itself there is a bow, cello strings, rosin, and a carrying case.

Includes adjustable endpin.

18.9-pound shipping weight, accessories included.

30-day money back guarantee.

CONS

This cello is the most expensive on our list. Handcrafted quality is very attractive, but it isn’t cheap.

Not for children who are just learning the instrument. If this cello is damaged it could mean hundreds of dollars of damage. Using this would be a big responsibility to put on a child that is just figuring out the basics of the cello.

Backpacking doesn’t live up to the quality of the product itself. Looks cheaper than it should when it first arrives.

The included case isn’t as nice as it might be. It has minimal padding or overall protection. It will keep your cello safe from scratches, but when you invest this much into a cello, you want more protection. Most buyers will want to invest in a more protective hard-shell case to go with this cello.

The 30-day guarantee is nice but it isn’t as long as you might expect from a product of this price. You can find cellos with 1-year guarantees at a fraction of the price.

PROS

Handcrafted. This isn’t an instrument that is churned out by the thousands.

The surface is shiny and durable thanks to oil-varnishing done completely by hand.

Tuning pegs, tailpiece, and chinrest are all carved by hand. Whenever you put your hands on this instrument you can tell that it was created by a trained craftsman.

Designed with advanced and professional cellists in mind. Still, it’s not too much for a particularly dedicated student to handle.

Deep red cherry coloring.

Amazing sound, you can hear the work that has gone into designing and constructing this instrument.

Ships with a variety of accessories. These include a case, bow, strings, and rosin.

The included accessories are higher grade than those shipped with other cello packages.

One of the more affordable options from DZ strad. Costs a few thousand less than their Professional Handmade models.

The bow is very attractive and helps produce high-quality music. It is made with Pernambuco wood and unbleached grade AAA Mongolian horsehair. The bow alone can sell for up to a hundred dollars on its own.

Covered by D Z strad’s 30-day, 100% money back guarantee.

So far, we have focused on budget cellos that are perfect for students, but those aren’t the only cellos on the market. Budget instruments are better than ever, but there are still qualities you can only get if you are willing to make a sizable investment. That’s what the D Z strad Cello Model 101 represents. It is a symbol of handmade quality for the serious musician. Other cellos are designed to last for years; this cello is built to last for decades. The fact that it is hand-crafted means that every part is examined throughout the cello’s creation so that the final product is as beautiful and blemish-free as possible. It adds up to an instrument that sounds and looks fantastic. It’s not a perfect purchase, the included case is disappointing, and the money-back guarantee is relatively short. Still, if you have the money to invest in a cello like this, you should definitely consider the option. All of the cellos on our list will help you learn to play but this is the sort of you can pass down to your children.

Melissa

Editor, Musical Instruments Expert

%

Overall

%

Usability

%

Quality

%

Price

HOW TO DISTINGUISH A QUALITY CELLO FROM A CHEAP ONE

New or Used

It can be hard to know what an instrument has been through at first glance. If an instrument is cracked open and falling apart then you know not to buy it, but what if there is structural damage that is just below the surface? This is the sort of question you need to ask when buying a used cello. If you want to avoid getting blindsided by unexpected issues, then it’s better to buy a new cello.

Appearance

You shouldn’t judge a person from the way they look, but you can judge a cello by its appearance. It’s true that there are some fantastic instruments out there that may look a little run down after heavy use, but these are the exception to the rule. When you’re shopping for a new cello, you want to find an instrument that looks perfect. If the manufacturer invested in properly finishing their instrument, then they probably did a thorough job overall. A stellar appearance isn’t proof of a well-made cello, but a shabby appearance is almost always the sign of a poorly made instrument.

Brand

Does the cello have a brand name or is it just a generic? This is one of the significant struggles when it comes to shopping for cellos at used instrument stores. Still, it can also happen when buying online. If you don’t know what company made the instrument, then you can’t do research on it to see if they are reputable or not. After all, quality instruments come from quality companies.

HOW TO DISTINGUISH A QUALITY CELLO FROM A CHEAP ONE

FACTORS TO CONSIDER WHEN PURCHASING A CELLO

String Type

The kind of string you use will impact the sound that the cello makes and the experience of playing the instrument. Teachers tend to recommend nylon strings to beginners. They balance strength and comfort. Beginners can practice for longer stretches of time with nylon strings because they are less likely to cause blistering. Steel strings are louder and more responsive, but they can be tougher to play. Metal is rougher on hands and can lead to discomfort and blisters. If you’ve played guitar with steel strings in the past, then you’re well prepared for playing a steel-stringed cello, but others might want to start off with nylon. If you’re on the fence, you can buy both kinds of strings and restring your cello to try out both before you decide.

Size

It’s important to get a cello that’s the right size for you. The cello is one of the larger portable instrument. With this in mind, you might be tempted to get a smaller model that is lighter and easier handle. However, this isn’t necessarily the right move. Smaller cellos produce different sounds, and most bands expect their cellists to use full-sized instruments. If you’re serious about playing the cello. The only reason to buy a smaller cello is if you’re shopping for someone who is especially young or short. 3/4 cellos are for people shorter than 5 feet and 1/2 sized cellos are for musicians shorter than 4 foot 6 inches tall.

Brand

If you want to find a cello, you can trust you need to find a cello manufacturer you can trust. If a company has a proven track record of producing quality instruments, then you can feel confident shopping with them. If you look them up online and can’t find any information on them, then you should pause and take another look at your options.

Material

Look to see what materials the cello was made from. Cellos should be made from high-quality woods like maple and spruce. Spruce is used to make the top while the other wooden segments are made with maple. This gives the cello its unique sound and look, if a manufacturer uses different materials it just won’t be the same.

Endpin

If you want the most comfortable playing experience, you should make sure that the cello you get has an adjustable endpin. The endpin is the little bit of metal sticking out of the bottom of the cello. A cello rests on its endpin. Adjustable endpins can be moved up and down to increase or decrease the height of the cello, making sure that it is at the perfect height for the musician.

Necessary Accessories

Finding a great cello is a good first step, but you need more to make beautiful music. If you don’t have a good bow and bridge, then you’re going to come up short. Look for cellos that come with these, and if the model you want doesn’t include these items, you need to budget for buying them separately. You want a bow made of quality materials, like Brazilwood or Pernambuco. Other woods are more likely to bend and break. The bridge should also be made of quality material, so it doesn’t snap under the pressure put on it when you’re playing.

Other Accessories

When you are shopping for a cello your main focus should be on the cello itself. After all, the best accessories in the world can’t coax a good sound out of a bad cello. With that being said, it’s still worth searching for a cello that comes with a variety of quality accessories. Outside of the bow and the bridge, the other most important accessories are probably a case and rosin. If you want to keep your cello in top condition you have to store it properly, which requires a proper case. Rosin is a material you rub on your bow to allow it to grip the string and produce a quality sound. Other accessories like stands, metronomes, and mutes are helpful but not as essential.

Color

The color of your cello may not impact the way it sounds but it does affect the way that it feels. If you’re like most musicians, you practice your instrument for the day you get to step up in front of the crowd and put on a show. When that day comes, you want to be carrying an instrument you can be proud of. It should be said that there usually isn’t much of a choice when it comes to cello color, red is standard. Still, there are some brands that offer different colors. Black is the most common alternative. But as we mentioned in the review section that Cecilio CCO-100 comes in colors like purple, pink, and blue. You have to decide whether you want to fit in with the band or stand out in the crowd.

Quality Guarantee

What assurance do you have that your new cello will still be working in a year? If you buy a second-hand cello or a generic instrument, you will probably have nothing but hope to go off of. However, if you buy from a brand that offers a warranty or some other kind of quality guarantee you can be confident that you are going to end up with a quality instrument. Accidents happen during the manufacturing process; even the best brands send out subpar instruments from time to time. The top companies earn their reputation by backing up their words with actions, offering free repair or replacement plans when factory defects happen. If you want to shop with true confidence, you need to look for some sort of guarantee.

FACTORS TO CONSIDER WHEN PURCHASING A CELLO

 BEST CELLO BRANDS

If you want the best cello possible, you need to buy from one of the most reputable brands you can find. There are plenty of companies making cellos out there, practicing a craft that has been perfected over hundreds of years of instrument manufacturing. You want a brand that has a track record of quality work and faith in their work. The best sign of this confidence is a good warranty.

Cecilio

Operating out of Rancho Cucamonga, California, Cecilio Musical Instruments provides cellos and other instruments to musicians worldwide. Since 2004 they’ve been producing instruments with students in mind. The company was started after one of the founders saw a family worrying over how they could afford to buy their young daughter an instrument when the only options available were so expensive. They produce string, woodwind, and brass instruments, along with accessories. They’re a small company, but they have a big reach, with their instruments used in classrooms all over the globe. To keep costs low they manufacture their instruments in China, but the instruments are always inspected in the US after completion and before sale. Cecilio understands people are warry about budget instruments, which is why they cover their instruments with a 1-year warranty. If you’re the original purchaser and there’s a factory defect with the body of your instrument they will repair or replace it.

Crescent

This instrument manufacturer has very humble beginnings. It was founded in 2001 by an instrument maker who plied their craft at swap meets across Southern California. In the decade and a half since then, it has grown to become one of the most successful instrument retailers online. Their focus is on selling instruments for students. In addition to making cellos, they also make guitars, trumpets, pianos, and flutes. Their focus is on selling affordable instruments that come with plenty of accessories. If you buy an instrument from them online, you can bet that it will ship with everything you need to start making music. Their Crescent 4/4 Beginner Cello Starter Kit comes with a cello, bow, bridge, case, rosin, stand, and extra strings.

Merano

Merano Musical Instruments has been producing quality instruments at affordable prices for over a decade and a half. They were founded in 2000 to provide students of all ages with instruments that have top of the line craftsmanship at an entry-level cost. They attribute their success to the personal experience of their designers, who learned in some of the world’s best musical organization. Their instruments are used in schools around the world because they can be found sold at prices below even wholesale levels. This one of the reasons their products are so widespread. Merano cellos are fairly unique because they are offered in a range of colors. They are one of the few companies selling serious cellos that come in colors like blue and pink. Anyone who wants a truly unique instrument at a bargain price should look at Merano.

Merano

D’Luca

Since 2003 D’Luca Musical Instruments have been providing musicians with the tools, they need to practice their craft. They don’t just produce Cellos, they produce hundreds of instruments, parts, and accessories for bands of every variety. From the humblest recorder to violins worth thousands of dollars they have something for every musician. Their cellos are designed to look great and sound even better. They come in two varieties, the affordable MC100-4/4 Meister Student Cello that we looked at earlier and the more expensive Meister Handmade Ebony Fitted Cello. Beginners should start out with their student cello, but if they ever want to move up to a higher-grade instrument, D’Luca has them covered.

D'Luca

D Z strad

While the other companies on our list are focused on making the most affordable instruments available D Z strad caters to musicians who can afford to pay extra for a top-of-the-line product. Their cellos cost thousands of dollars, but they are handcrafted. Their instruments are a sizable investment, but they are some of the longest lasting on the market. Simply put, if you’re a professional musician, this is one investment that is likely to pay off. For students their instruments might be considered “overkill,” but ultimately every individual needs to choose the right cello for their needs and budget. For serious musicians looking to make a long-term commitment to quality D Z strad has the perfect cello.

D Z Strad

HOW TO FIND THE BEST CELLO FOR YOUR NEEDS

Even after researching all the most popular cellos on the market today we can’t recommend any one of them definitively. That’s because every cello is made with a different market in mind. You need a cello that fits your particular needs. The perfect cello for a beginning student strapped for cash might not be suitable for a professional cellist performing with the New York Philharmonic. Before you can find the right cello, you need to figure out what your needs are. To help you go about this efficiently, we’ve listed the most important concerns for the average cello buyer.

Durability

It’s important to find a cello that will last as long as possible. Cellos made crafted carefully from quality materials will last longer than cheaper options. This means that more durable cellos tend to cost more. But if you are a serious musician, it’s a worthwhile investment. It’s also worth noting that new cellos tend to have a longer lifespan than used cellos because lifespan decreases with use.

Height

You need to buy a cello that fits your height. In this guide, we have recommended 4/4 size cellos, or full-sized cellos. This is because the average musician will work best with these cellos, and they produce the sound that most bands and orchestras are looking for. Smaller cellos are more suitable for shorter musicians, but their sound isn’t as loud or full. With that being said, if you are shorter than five feet tall you may need to use a smaller cello if you want to be able to play comfortably. 3/4 cellos are for people between five feel and four foot six inches tall. 1/2 cellos are for anyone smaller than four foot six.  When shopping for a child, you need to consider how old they are and whether they might outgrow their cello soon. If they are younger than 10 and well below five feet tall you might need to get a smaller cello. If they are around 12, they might grow into a full-sized cello.

Accessories

Playing the cello correctly requires more than just a cello. A bow and bridge are absolutely essential, and rosin is very important. That’s why most cellos sold online come with these accessories. A good case is also important because if you don’t store your cello properly it will be damaged. Your first goal should be finding a high-quality cello that suits your needs, but once you find that you need to think about securing quality accessories. If a cello doesn’t come with the add-ons you need, then you’ll need to budget for buying them separately.

Style

The average person might not be able to tell most cellos apart but if you’ve spent time around them, you know that musicians can tell them apart. Sound quality should be your first concern, but that doesn’t mean you have to ignore the way a cello looks. When you’re performing, everyone will be looking at you and your cello, so you might as well invest in a cello that looks good. Most cellos come in different shades of red, but companies like Merano produce a variety of colored cellos that come in shades of black, blue, and even pink. Think about how your instrument will fit you as a person and any potential band you might be interested in performing with.

Goals

Where do you want to go in your musical career? If you are just a student, who has never even touched a cello before then you can probably get by with the cheapest option. But if you are a serious student or an aspiring pro it is worth investing in a higher grade of instrument. For the average person, it’s hard to tell a student cello from a pricey professional instrument, but the pros can quickly tell the difference. If you want to show people how serious you are about your craft, it’s worth paying whatever is necessary.

HOW TO FIND THE BEST CELLO FOR YOUR NEEDS

CELLO ACCESSORIES AND PARTS

Full-size 4/4 Brazilwood Cello Bow Ebony Frog

You can call the bow a cello accessory because it is separate from the instrument itself, but without a bow, you can’t play the cello the way it is meant to be played. Creating beautiful music doesn’t just take a quality cello, it also requires a quality bow. This brazilwood bow is the best you can buy in its price range. It’s made from durable, high-quality wood and natural horse hair. If you’re not satisfied with the bow that comes with your cello consider upgrading to this quality product.

cello ebony frog

 Don’t Fret 110 Cello Finger Chart

One of the most important aspects of playing the cello is proper finger placement. Some people pick it up quickly, but others find it difficult to remember where exactly their fingers need to go. That’s why this product was invented; it’s a collection of colored decals you can place on your fingerboard to help you recognize the different notes. It helps use visual learning to build muscle memory, making it easier to learn the basics so you can move on to more advanced study.

 Honbay Rubber Cello Practice Mute

Finding a good place to practice the cello can be difficult. After all, it isn’t a small or quiet instrument. If you live in an apartment with thin walls, you might be bothering your neighbors every time you play in your home. But mastering the cello requires constant practice, which is where this product comes in. This product drastically cuts down on the cello’s volume once properly attached. You can hear what you’re playing for the purposes of practice, but people in other rooms won’t have to hear you.

honbay rubber cello

 Jade L’Opera JADE Rosin for Violin, Viola, and Cello

Serious musicians need to invest in quality rosin. Rosin is a form of plant resin that is rubbed on bow hair so that it will get a better grip on the cello strings. It’s absolutely essential for getting the best sound possible.  L’Opera from Jade will allow your bow to slide over the strings and coax out clearer notes. It’s also a great value for its price.

jade l'opera

 Full Set High Quality Cello Strings Size 4/4 & 3/4 Cello Strings, A D G & C

If you play your cello long enough, you are going to break a string or two. Even the best strings wear down with time. Don’t be caught without any backup strings when you’ve got a performance coming up. You should always have at least one set of backup strings on hand, and this is a full set of strings. There are higher-grade strings out there, but entire sets can cost hundreds of dollars. If you want strings that provide a balance between quality and affordability these are the ones to choose.

cello strings

 TIPS, TRICKS AND ADVICE

Finding the best cello possible is important, but it is just the first step in a long journey. Once you own a cello, you need to think about playing it and maintaining it properly. Even the best cellos will fall apart quickly if they aren’t treated well. Cellos might look large and sturdy from a distance, but once you, have one in your hands you’ll know that they are actually fairly thin, and any damage or warping can change their sound. So, if you want to get the most out of your instrument, you need to follow these steps.

Better Safe Than Sorry

Before going into the specifics of cello maintenance, it’s important to note that cellos can be very delicate instruments. You don’t want to jump into working on one without complete confidence. If you aren’t confident that you can perform a particular maintenance task, you should look into getting expert advice. Hopefully, you have a teacher or musician friend who can help you, but if not you should find a trained professional.

Even if you are an experienced musician with access to a knowledgeable teacher or band leader you should still consider taking your cello in for yearly maintenance. This is what professionals do even after years of working with their instrument. Instrument maintenance professionals have tools and expertise that aren’t available to others, and if you’ve spent serious money on your instrument the cost of a proper checkup is a smart investment.

When You’re Getting Ready to Play

Remove the bow from the bag first and then the cello itself. The cello is more likely to damage the bow than the other way around.

Always grab the bow by the frog, which is the technical name for the bit at the back of the bow where the hair comes out of. Never grab ahold of the bow by the hair, you don’t want to get the dirt and oil from your skin on it or rip it out of place.

Remember to tighten the bow hair properly before performing. When the hair is sufficiently tightened, it should be approximately as wide as a pencil. If the shaft of the bow goes entirely straight you’ve tightened it too much, leave a bit of a bend.

Apply rosin as needed but don’t overdo it. If you apply rosin every time you play, then it is going to build up on the strings and flake off onto the cello as you play. In the end, everything will get covered with rosin powder and it will be both unsightly and a pain to clean up.

Remember to adjust the endpin. Too many people play their cello at an uncomfortable height even though they can make basic adjustments to the endpin easily.

After You’ve Finished Playing

If you have to take a rest be sure to find a safe place to store your cello. You don’t want to put it in a heavy-traffic area where people are likely to bump into it. Retract the endpin when you’re done.

Even if you applied your rosin carefully and moderately you should still wipe down the cello to remove any rosin dust that might have flaked off, and to remove any. Remember to use a soft, clean cloth to do this. This means you have to wash your cloth regularly and replace it from time to time. Wiping it with a dirty cloth can create more problems than it solves.

The hair on your bow should be slack when you store it. Leaving it tightened up will put unnecessary stress on it and cause damage over time.

The rosin should be covered before it is put into storage. You don’t want uncovered rosin sliding around your bag and getting rosin everywhere.

You can lean your cello against a wall for a few minutes at a time but if you’re going to leave your cello for much longer than that you should put it in a case. Soft cases are fine if you have plenty of room for instrument storage but if you are taking your cello on the road a hard case is the way to go. When multiple instruments are going to be stored together out of your sight then chances are they are going to bump together and slide around. A quality case can save your cello.

Your cello should be stored in an area that has a moderate temperature and dry air. Water, heat, and cold will all damage your instrument. Just letting the cello rest in a window facing the sun can lead to sun damage, even if the room itself is kept a reasonable temperature.

 

Hopefully, this guide has given you the information you need to find the cello you’re looking for. Whether you’re a professional looking to buy your next cello or a parent shopping for your child’s first instrument one of the five cellos we looked at is sure to have what you need. If you want the best overall cello at an affordable price, we recommend the Cecilio CCO-100 Student Cello. If you’re looking to get the best bargain for your money the Crescent 4/4 Beginner Cello is a good selection. Finally, if money isn’t your main concern, the D Z strad Cello is an instrument that will serve you well for years to come. Every cello on our list has something to offer. Ultimately only you can decide which cello meets your unique needs.

We hope that you have found this guide to be useful. The material in it is drawn from careful research, with a focus on providing accurate and thorough information. We’ve endeavored to create a source of knowledge that you can keep coming back to even after you’ve purchased your cello. After all, you can’t truly use the section on cello maintenance tips until you actually have the instrument in your possession. That’s our philosophy; we create guides to help you from start to finish.

If you need help buying any other type of product, we would recommend one of our many other articles. We are working to create these guides for as many products as possible. Many are already online, and more are being added all the time, so you should keep checking back up. We know that you work hard to earn your money and we believe you shouldn’t have to work hard shopping. That’s why we bring in knowledgeable researchers to do the hard work for you, taking the hassle and guesswork out of shopping.

Melissa