Best Beginner Cello Review in 2018

Choosing a musical instrument for your child may seem stressful. You will have many questions about how to pick the best beginner cello to meet your child’s needs. That is perfectly normal. Understanding the instrument more will help. It will also help to know more about your child’s desire to play a student cello.

Things To Consider

Does my child want to play the cello?

Best Beginner Cello

Committing to a musical instrument is a big deal for many children and their families. This is especially true once it comes time to purchase one to keep. Many families think it is a good idea to rent a cello for several months just to make sure the student is experiencing more than just a passing phase. After renting for a while, you will know if your child really does want to play the cello.

It is important to remember though that a budding instrumentalist will not always enjoy their chosen instrument right away. Like with many things in life, we do not start to enjoy it until we start to get good at it. Cello is the same way. Once you have established that this is their instrument and they have demonstrated the desire and will to improve their skills, then you are one-step closer to making the decision to buy a student cello.

What size cello does my child need?

Cellos come in four standard sizes. The size is noted by a fraction. A full size cello is labeled a 4/4. This is what nearly all adult players will use. For slightly smaller adults, a 7/8 cello is available, but it is not very common. The next size down is a ¾ cello. This size is typically most well suited to players between the ages of 11 and 15. Beginning students, between the ages of seven and 11, will most likely need a ½-size cello. The youngest players, ages five to seven years old, should use a ¼-size cello.

These are suggestions based on the average sized child. If your son or daughter is shorter or taller than average, it is still possible to figure out what size cello will fit them best. Players four foot and under should buy a 1/4 size cello. The ½-size cello is for those players between four foot and four-foot-six tall. When you child grows past four-foot-six they can use a ¾ size cello until they are about five foot tall. After that a 4/4 cello is most appropriate.

If you think your child is close to a growth spurt and you have not yet purchased a cello, it may be reasonable to rent the cello of the correct size until you make the investment. However, the resale value of a gently used cello is something to consider as well.

What is the resale value of student cellos?

The best estimates are that student cellos will resell for no more than 60 percent of their initial retail value. That assumes they were of decent quality to begin with and that their first owner did not abuse them. At certain times of year the market is more saturated than others. For example, the end of a school year finds many students moving on to the next hobby. It will be harder to recoup your investment when the market is flooded with student cellos.

What else do you need?

You need a whole lot more than just a cello to play the cello. Bows, music stand, spare strings, bag or case, rosin, shoulder rest, tuner, metronome, and an endpin stop or anchor.

Each of these items comes in a range of quality as well. Sometimes you can buy a cello bundled with these accessories. After a few months experience, your student, or their teacher may realize the limitations of these included items, so do not be surprised if you need to upgrade to a higher quality bow or strings. This should all be considered normal for a growing musician.

Is the student cello flat packed?

This is a very important question to ask. Some of the lower end cello companies will sell you a cello that requires assembly. It is possible for an amateur to assemble a cello himself or herself, however, the risk of damaging the cello is high. For this reason, most teachers advise their students to either buy one already assembled or plan to take it to a luthier when it arrives.

When you have to install the bridge due to flat packing, you will not be able to play a cello straight out of the box. This could be a major disappointment to your aspiring cellist. There is nothing inherently wrong with flat packing, but it is important to count the cost of assembly by a professional before you jump right in to buy the inexpensive student cello.

Five Best Beginner Cello

Cecilio CCO-100 Student Cello

Best Beginner Cello

This cello will immediately catch many parents’ eyes because of all the accouterments that come with it. You will receive a soft case, stand, bow, rosin, bridge, and extra set of strings when you purchase this cello. The case is padded with backpack style straps to make carrying this beginner’s cello back and forth from school or practice easier.

A spruce top and maple neck are supposed to be crack-proof. However, if you drop it, it is unlikely to withstand the crash with a harder floor like tile or wood. The sides, back, pegs, and fingerboard are also made of maple like the neck. An alloy tailpiece includes four fine tuners. There is a one-year manufacturer’s warranty on this cello.

If you like what you see in this cello, you are in luck. This particular cello is available in all four sizes. Even more exciting is that this cello comes in five colors – pink, blue, purple, metallic black, and natural. It is also available in all four main sizes – ¼, 2/4, ¾, and 4/4.

  • Includes multiple items needed to get started
  • Inexpensive, entry level cello
  • Multiple colors to choose from
  • Comes flat packed and needing assembly
  • Sound post may need to be repaired after shipping
  • Uneven paint job

Knilling School Model 1/2 Cello Outfit

Best Beginner Cello

This student cello may not come in multiple colors, but what you miss out on in flash is more than made up for by substance. A flamed maple back is beautiful to look at and the even grain spruce top means your audience will not be distracted by the instrument but will instead focus on the beautiful sound it produces.

Unlike the last item, this one comes fully assembled. The strings are D’Addario Preludes, which are very popular with cello teachers. Another accessory it comes with is a padded nylon cover. The handle is reinforced to ensure your child can more easily transport it back from school and practice. It comes with a brazilwood bow, strung with white horsehair.

An internal mechanism for fine-tuning makes it simple to quickly get an accurate tuning even when there is no access to string adjusters. This violin model is available in all four standard sizes.

  • Beautiful maple flame back
  • D’Addario Prelude strings
  • Available in all four sizes
  • May be too expensive for a child who has not demonstrated any commitment
  • Constructed in China
  • Is heavy and could be difficult for youngest students to transport

Merano Student Cello

Best Beginner Cello

Another cello that comes with nearly all the tools you will need to begin playing right away. Merano incudes rosin, a music stand, metro tuner, mute, cell stand, and an extra set of strings with the purchase of this cello. On top of that, it comes with an eclectic blue paint job.

The hardwood frog, pegs, and fingerboard are designed to be both functional and pleasingly aesthetic. They are ebonized, which means they are painted black instead of being made with real ebony. This keeps the costs down, but does mean you are not getting the real deal. It is protected from damage when your child uses the padded carrying bag to transport it from home to lessons or school.

It is unclear if all sizes of this beginner cello come fully assembled or if they may sometimes come flat packed. If you choose to buy this cello, double check before you make the purchase. Alternatively, at the very least make sure you understand the return policy if you do not want to visit a luthier to have it assembled.

  • Includes several necessary accessories
  • Also includes some accessories that are not essential
  • Company has good reputation for customer service
  • Free rosin is cheap and needs to be upgraded
  • Ebonized pegs and fingerboards
  • May be flat packed

D Z strad Cello Model 101 Student Cello

Best Beginner Cello

As the price of cellos goes up, so does the care taken in making them. These cellos are handmade and hand varnished. The pegs, tailpiece, and chin rest are all hand carved. This cello outfit also includes a case, bow, strings, and rosin.

Right out of the box, with just a little tuning, your child will be able to play this cello to the best of their abilities. Cello teachers like this particular instrument because of the quality that is present even with the reasonable price. It produces a consistent sound because human hands, instead of machines, made it. This assembly process takes place in France.

  • Comes with D’Addario Prelude Strings
  • Available in multiple sizes, included uncommon 1/8
  • Handmade
  • Rosin will need to be upgraded
  • More expensive than most entry level cellos

Cremona SC-165 Premier Student Cello Outfit

Best Beginner Cello

The tonewoods used in these cellos produce an exquisite sound when held by a player who has even the slightest bit of teaching and motivation to do well. Manufactured in California, it includes components from all over the world. Pulling a lovely sound from a cello when you first hold it is inspiring to young musicians and this cello proves that having the right tools really does make a difference.

Indian rosewood fittings, swiss-style pegs, and a composite tailpiece all combine to make this a unique cello. There are four fine tuners as well, which should help your student cellists keep their instrument in tune on a consistent basis.

The Cremona Student Cello is available in all four common sizes. It is a good choice for students who are advancing in the skills quickly because it can keep up with them. These cellos are even used by working professionals.

  • Made in the USA
  • Sounds nice right out of the box
  • Includes four fine tuners
  • Needs to be kept near a humidifier during dry, winter months
  • Included strings do not match the quality of the rest of the instrument
  • Most expensive beginner cello


Among all cellos, some significant price categories need to be considered before stating which one is the best student cello in 2017. You have cellos that are a few hundred dollars, near $1,000 dollars, and then some that exceed $2,000. The cellos that are closer to $2000 than $1000 are not appropriate for the cellist who is still a beginner. That being said, the Cremona SC-165 cello is the best student beginner cello available.

This cello comes in all four sizes. The quality of this instrument makes it in an investment cello. It will hold its value with good care if your child does eventually move onto other artistic pursuits. It also comes completely assembled, which makes up for part of the price difference. You will save money by not needing to take a brand new cello to the luthier right away. Instead, your child can play for a little while and then consider have a luthier inspect it for integrity and sound quality.

The hard shell case that comes with the Cremona will help protect that investment. Your child may choose to use it all through school and if you need to move up to the next size, that is possible because the Cremona SC-165 comes in multiple sizes.

Stephanie Su

Started learning music when she was four years old, Stephanie is a music teacher and a music therapist who is highly proficient in Piano, Violin, Guitar, and Ukulele. She likes to learn, teach, and share her music playing experiences.

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