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Best Violin Mutes

The Top 5 Best Violin Mutes Available Today (Updated 2023)

Beginners to the instrument may not realize that the violin uses mutes, and different kinds of them depending on the situation.

This guide will cover what violin mutes are and five excellent options for purchase.

What Is A Violin Mute?

Violin Mute

Credit: Magic Fluke Company

A mute is an inexpensive tool that every violinist should have at least one of. The most common one is featured in the picture above, the tourte mute. It is used in orchestral music marked, “con sordina,” or “with mute.”

It is a circular foam mute that rests on the strings near or on the bridge of the violin. It muffles the resonance and overtones caused by vibrating strings, without lowering the volume.

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Violin Mute
The other main type of mute is a practice mute. It is designed differently, with most having a comb-like shape, as seen in the image above. They also rest on the strings near the bridge but unlike the tourte mute, the practice mute significantly muffles the volume, perfect for practicing in an apartment or low-volume setting.

Factors To Consider When Buying A Violin Mute

Violin Mute

Credit: Fiddlershop

Type

As mentioned in the previous section, there are two main types of violin mutes: tourte mutes and practice mutes. The use of these mutes differ based on the situation.

Tourte mutes are usually rubber, and used to change the color or tone of a violin in an orchestra, while negligibly reducing volume. Practice mutes, whether plastic or metal, are designed to drastically cut the volume for practicing in sound-sensitive locations.

Unlike other musical instruments or accessories, the situations where you would use either type of violin mute are straightforward. If it is for an orchestral or ensemble setting, use a tourte. If it is for quieting purposes, use a practice mute.

Material

Tourte mutes, the most common type of mute, are typically made from rubber. In some cases, they can be made of plastic as well. Practice mutes, however, are commonly made from rubber and metal.

The rubber practice mute is the intermediate option in terms of sound muffling. It has a combed design and rests on all four strings. This is great for playing in spaces where sound must be limited.

If you are in a place where you need to be especially quiet, like an apartment, then a metal practice mute is the best option for you as it offers the most sound dampening.

Price

While violin mutes are generally inexpensive when it comes to music gear, it is good to know the potential costs. Tourte mutes are the cheapest, as they can cost anywhere from $0.50 to $5. Practice mutes are slightly more expensive and typically cost $10 to $20.

The Top 5 Best Violin Mutes Available Today

1. Tourte Two Hole Standard Violin Mute

Violin Mute

This rubber tourte violin mute is the real deal and a widely used accessory by violinists everywhere. It costs less than two dollars, and offers a different sound option to players depending on what the music requires. This specific mute is known for its wonderfully rich and mellow tone that does not rattle with the vibrations of the strings.

Pros:

  • Notably mellow and warm.

Cons:

  • Does not offer much in terms of sound reduction for play in apartments, etc.

2. Glaesel Violin Ultra Practice Mute

Violin Mute

is a very popular option that is also one of the highest-reviewed violin mutes out there! It is made of rubber, making it perfect for those who want to drastically cut their playing volume during practice, but not eliminate it entirely.
The Glaesel mute is known for resting on the violin’s bridge perfectly and working like a charm immediately.

Pros:

  • Snug and gentle fit on the violin’s bridge.

Cons:

  • Costs a few more dollars than a tourte mute.

3. Howard Core Metal Violin Practice Mute

Violin Mute

This beautiful practice mute from Howard Core is metal, giving it the most sound dampening capabilities out of all the types of violin mutes.

This one in particular is known for being particularly great at muffling sound, making it ideal for practice in an apartment, even with thin walls! It does cost a bit more money, however, and if not positioned properly there can be some minor buzzing/rattling.

Pros:

  • Extremely effective at muffling most of the violin’s sound.

Cons:

  • May rattle or buzz if not positioned properly on the violin’s bridge.

4. D’Addario Spector Violin Mute

Violin Mute

The D’Addario Spector is a great, unconventional option. It functions as a tourte mute, meaning it doesn’t muffle the sound so much as changing the tone for orchestral performance. It rests on the A and D strings and is nearly invisible. You slide it on the strings towards the bridge to engage the mute, and back down to disengage.

Reviewers note the convenience and effectiveness of the mute, but also have minor complaints about it being sometimes difficult to get the Spector properly situated on the strings.

Pros:

  • Extremely minimal and offers a great muffled tone.

Cons:

  • Can be finicky when settling the mute on the violin’s strings.

5. Artino Practice Mute For Violin

Violin Mute

is a very interesting mute option as it is a bit of a hybrid between the two main types of practice mutes. It is constructed of metal, but has a rubber coating, meaning its sound muffling range is somewhere between a rubber practice mute and a metal practice mute.

This mute is known for its excellent sound quality, combined with its damping ability. Some customers, however, have noted that it can be a very tight fit on some violins and may obstruct the view of your bow at some angles.

Pros:

  • Notably wonderful dampened sound quality.

Cons:

  • Can be a tight fit on your bridge, as well as potentially blocking some of your view of your bow.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is a violin mute?

A violin mute is a small, inexpensive accessory that is usually constructed of rubber or metal.

A practice mute is designed to muffle your violin’s sound so you can practice and rehearse in spaces where volume is limited. A tourte mute is used in orchestral settings to alter your violin’s tone, without significantly muffling its sound.

How can I practice violin without disturbing others?

Like any instrument, most of your practicing will be either done at home or school. In many of these settings, your sound output must be limited. This is where a violin practice mute comes into play.

A rubber one will dampen your sound drastically, while keeping the volume low. A metal practice mute will kill the sound even more.

What should I look for when buying a mute?

The factors you should look for when buying a mute are type, price and material. You need to decide whether you need this mute for performance or practice, and whether you need intermediate muffling with rubber or severe muffling with metal.

While violin mutes are generally inexpensive, you can find one mute for $2 and another for $30, which is significant.

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