Are you worried about how much noise your violin practice is making? While they’re definitely not the loudest instrument in the world, they can play at over 90 dB which is in the territory of damaging to your ears. But, thankfully there are a number of great violin mutes that will lower the volume and help you to get fewer complaints from neighbors or family members.
In this post, we’ve reviewed 6 of the best violin mutes currently on the market in 2022 to help you choose the right one for you. We also answer all the questions you might have before purchasing one in our violin mute buying guide. Let’s get started.
Quick Answer: The Best Mutes for Violins
The Top Violin Mute Reviews
Before we get on to our violin mute buying guide, we’ve reviewed 6 of our favorite violin mutes to help you narrow down which one to buy. Check them out below.
1. Catrpilr Violin Mute
First up, we have the Catrpilr violin mute which is made for 3/4 and 4/4 violins, and which has one of the most unique designs on our list. This mute does an outstanding job of reducing volume while maintaining the overtones and acoustic profile of your violin so is ideal if you don’t want to lose the tone of your instrument.
Designed for intermediate to advanced violin players, the Catrpilr mute is made out of soft synthetic mesh that won’t scratch, stain, or damage your instrument. Its unique design includes a low profile for a clear line of sight, a lightweight construction, and flexible magnetic feet to maintain the grip on your instrument. On a fun note, this mute also comes in three distinct color variations.
It’s very easy to set up too, simply pull the sections apart and slip over the bridge to securely anchor the Catrpilr mute. All in all, a great, easy-to-use violin mute, all for an affordable price which makes it an easy choice for number one on our list.
2. Alexi Strings Heavy Violin Mute
Another good option is this violin mute from Alexi Strings who make a highly rated metal violin practice mute. The material is a quality chrome-plated brass. If you’re used to lightweight rubber mutes, you’ll find the metal mute heavier in comparison, weighing in at approximately 2.4-4 ounces.
The key advantage to the heavier weight is that it applies the right amount of pressure to mute the volume significantly, yet maintain a clear tone. New violin players who don’t want to disturb their families and neighbors should definitely consider this practice mute.
Metal has a greater potential for scratching your violin or viola. Another consideration for users is that the Alexi mute doesn’t clamp on, so you should take care to keep your instrument level while using the mute.
3. Otto Musica Artino Violin Mute
- Artino Practice mute For violin / viola
- Artino practice mute for VN / VA
- Material: Metal covered with rubber Features: Retains the sound quality and protects the bridge
Whether you play violin or viola, the Otto Musica Artino practice mute may be an ideal choice for you. It’s made of metal but covered in rubber. Musicians have the advantage of heavier weighted metal with protection from the rubber coating to prevent any damage to your instrument in the event the mute shifts or falls off.
At 3 inches long, 2 inches wide, and 1 inch high, this mute sits high on the bridge leaving some space, but still works to mute the strings with a small amount of pressure. Users love this mute and believe it’s worth a slightly higher price since it works exceptionally well to mute without distorting volume.
4. Violin Woodworkshop Rubber Violin Mute
- Black Rubber Mute for very quiet practice
- 51116 101274 Ultra USA
- Suitable for 4/4violin and 14 inch viola
The rubber violin practice mute by Violin Wordworkshop is a suitable size for a 4/4 violin or 14-inch viola. Made in the USA, the rubber is thick and flexible, sliding easily on and off the bridge. Because it’s a heavier rubber, this mute is ideal for sitting securely on the bridge and not sliding around. It also does an excellent job of dampening sound.
Slightly shorter than some of the other options in this list, this mute is 1.57 inches long, 0.47 inches wide, and 0.59 inches high. Take care to press this mute fully down on the bridge to maintain tone while getting the maximum quieting effect.
5. Eno Music Rubber Violin Mute
- The practice mute reduces volume by about 50% which doesn't disturb your neighbors or family
- Put it on the top of bridge, easy to use
- available for 4/4 violin
The Eno black rubber practice mute should reduce your violin’s volume by 50%. You’ll immediately notice that this mute is designed with a slight curve that mirrors the bridge on a more advanced violin. The mute is small and light and can stay clipped on even when storing the instrument and transporting your instrument in its case.
Dimensions are 2 inches long, 0.5 inches high, and 0.86 inches wide, and the mute is available for 4/4 violins. Eno also carries a battery-operated tuner which you can utilize along with your practice mute.
6. eBoot Rubber Violin Mute
- Great for practicing and playing violin when you don't want to disturb your family or friend
- Easy to use, just put it on top of the bridge
- Compatible with 4/4 violin
Rubber mutes are a great choice for beginners, being flexible but still strong. This eBoot Rubber Violin practice mute is easy to use and has five prongs to successfully dampen volume. Simply place it on top of the bridge and it maintains a clear tone while cutting volume.
The size is compatible with a 4/4 violin and dimensions are approximately 2.1 inches long, 1 inch wide, and 0.5 inches high. This mute is noted for being lighter than some of the other options and more flexible. Although this mute is not designed for concert passages, it’s perfect for practice.
How to Choose a Violin Mute: A Buyer’s Guide
Violins are available with a variety of accessories to add to and improve the skills that violinists have. Violin mutes are one of these accessories.
Violin mutes are tools that violinists can use during their practice sessions, performances, and under a variety of circumstances.
There are several reasons why a violin mute should be the next tool in your arsenal as a violinist and below we’ll walk you through some of the common questions to help you choose the best one.
The Different Types of Violin Mutes
There are a variety of mutes that are available for violinists to purchase and many of these mutes serve different purposes.
There are two main types of violin mutes;
- mutes that are designed for performances
- practice mutes
Understanding which type of violin mute you need will help you to purchase the right mute for your violin.
Violin Mutes for Performance
Violin mutes that are designed for performances are mutes that can slide easily on and off of the bridge of a violin while remaining attached to the violin.
These mutes are beneficial for performances because many pieces of music have sections that are purposefully written to be performed with violin mutes.
When violinists arrive at these sections, they can easily slide their mutes onto the bridges of their violins.
In contrast, when violinists finish these musical passages, they can also easily remove their violin mutes and have them readily available for another passage. Performance mutes are typically made with rubber.
Practice mutes are made specifically for violinists to practice with.
When a violinist needs to practice in a quiet environment, they can easily place the practice mute on top of the bridge of their violin.
Practice mutes are typically made of brass and are not designed to stay on violins.
In fact, the weight and materials of practice mutes can damage a violin’s bridge if special care isn’t taken while using one.
To combat this issue, manufacturers have been developing practice mutes that use thick rubber or synthetic materials.
Synthetic mutes are great alternatives to the traditional brass practice mutes because synthetic mutes are less harmful to violins.
Additionally, synthetic mutes are typically not as thick as brass mutes, allowing violinists to practice as normal.
Practice mutes are used for practice sessions because they mute the sound of a violin immensely, making them optimal for practicing in quiet environments.
Performance mutes reduce the sound that a violin produces but not very much, allowing violinists to project their sounds while simultaneously reducing their sounds as well.
How Violin Mutes Work
A violin mute, as the name suggests, mutes the sound of a violin by decreasing the vibrations of the violin’s bridge as a player plays.
As with every part of a violin, the bridge plays a large role in how the violin produces sound.
The violin’s bridge almost works like a direct transmitter and transmits the vibrations of a violin’s strings into the body of the violin.
However, when a violin mute is attached to the violin’s bridge, the weight of the mute either decreases the bridge’s vibrations or the material of the mute absorbs the vibrations of the bridge.
How Loud is a Violin with a Mute?
The sound that a violin can make with its mute on depends on how hard a violinist is playing and the type of mute that is on the violinist’s violin.
Violins are typically played within the 90-decibel range.
However, with a practice mute, a violin can play within the 60 to 75-decibel range.
Ease of Use
Performance mutes and practice mutes are very easy to use on violins.
Depending on the performance mute that you have for your violin, you can leave the mute attached to the strings of your violin, between the violin’s bridge and its tailpiece, as you play your violin.
Then, when you need to use the performance mute, you can simply slide the mute up the strings of the violin and place it onto the violin’s bridge.
A practice mute requires slightly more preparation to use on a violin, as practice violin mutes should always be removed from violins when they are not in use.
When you want to use a practice mute, you simply need to take the mute and place it on top of the bridge of your violin.
Practice mutes have slots that allow them to easily fit on top of violins’ bridges.
Take precaution when you use a practice mute, however, as some practice mutes can easily damage the bridge of your violin or its strings if they are misused.
Best Violin Mute Brands
There are many great violin mutes that are available on the market because violin mutes are simple products to develop.
Cecilio, a popular violin manufacturer, also produces great violin mutes.
Otto Musica and Alexi Strings make practice mutes that are dependable.
If you would like to try out a unique violin mute design, then you will be interested in what Spector has to offer for violins.
Violin mutes are relatively inexpensive accessories for your violin, and you may even want to consider purchasing multiple mutes for your violin in case you lose one.
There are several violin mutes that are sold in multi-mute packages just for this reason.
As you are shopping for a violin mute, you will find many great options for as low as $5 to as much as $20.
A high-quality practice mute made from brass will usually cost you just under $20.
Similarly, a high-quality rubber performance mute will cost around $10.
A violin mute changes the tone of a violin, which is why composers sometimes instruct violinists to play passages of their pieces with mutes.
In addition to reducing the overall volume of a violin, mutes give violins deeper and warmer tones when they are being used on the bridges of the violins.
While this may sound like a great bonus to many violinists who need to practice their violins with mutes, this can actually be a disadvantage, especially for violinists who habitually practice with mutes on their violins.
As a violinist, when you practice your violin you begin to develop patterns and playing habits to produce certain sounds with your violin.
If you routinely practice with a violin mute on the bridge of your violin, which will alter the sound of the violin, your playing style will be adapted to the sound that you create with the violin mute on the violin.
Therefore, when you remove the violin mute, your sound will be much different than what you anticipated.
If you are ever in need of a violin mute but don’t have one on hand, you can mute your violin with a safe device that will dampen the vibrations of your violin’s bridge.
Some violinists have used clothespins to mute their violins effectively when traditional violin mutes were not at their disposal.
However, it will be best for you to use a rubber or soft cloth material on your violin’s bridge if you do not have access to a violin mute.
If you want to regularly practice your violin in a quiet environment but are worried about developing bad habits through the use of a practice mute, then you may want to invest in an electric violin.
Electric violins can be played quietly without being plugged into amplifiers.
Instead, you can plug a pair of headphones into the electric violin and listen directly to what you are playing.
Electric violins, while close, do not produce the exact same sounds as acoustic violins.
Therefore, you should carefully assess the advantages and disadvantages of electric violins versus practice mutes.
Conclusion: Which one Should you Buy?
After reviewing six outstanding violin mutes, you may still be wondering: What is the best violin practice mute for me?
Considering the fine features, customer reviews, and user experience, we can confidently recommend the Catrpilr Violin Mute. The unique design and flexible material will help you while protecting your instrument. You’ll have the comfort of practicing without distracting others or feeling self-conscious.