About Benning Violins

Benning Violins - formerly known as Studio City Music - is a Los Angeles-area mainstay violin shop offering an extensive catalog of fine violins, violas, cellos and bows for sale crafted by old and modern masters.

We are a family-owned and operated store since 1953 and have a long tradition of expert service and meeting the needs of musicians, from the beginner to the professional.

We perform restorations and repairs on fine instruments and bows. We offer expert appraisals of instruments as well as consignment sales.

For three generations, the Benning family name has been synonymous with the making of fine, master-crafted violins, violas and cellos. Instruments crafted by Eric Benning are owned and played by a number of premier players, concert performers and recording artists.

Since the launch of our web site, we have grown into an International enterprise, shipping fine instruments and bows, accessories, as well as lesser-cost student outfits set up in our workshop, all over the world.

(818) 762-1374
Los Angeles, California, USA
  • The Highest Quality Instruments at the Lowest Price

    Every instrument is set up by expert luthiers in Benning's storied workshop to their exacting specifications before being shipped.
  • The Right Bow Brings Out the Best in Your Instrument

    Whether you are a beginner or a professional, choosing a bow is as important of a decision as choosing an instrument.
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What We Provide

Benning Violins online store offers a wide range of instruments from a number of different countries - from lesser-cost student outfits to those for intermediate and advanced players. All violins, violas and cellos are hand-crafted by reputable and esteemed makers and are set up in our own storied workshop to our exacting specifications for optimal playability and tone. Can't find what you're looking for? Need expert advice? Please contact us.

100% Satisfaction

We accept returns for up to 30 days from purchase date if you are not completely satisfied with your purchase.

Free Shipping

We ensure that your order is expertly packed and quickly and safely delivered to you - Free of charge.

Expert Instrument Setup

All new instruments are set up in our workshop to our exacting specifications for optimal playability and tone.

Low Prices

We always strive to provide top quality instruments and accessories at the lowest and most affordable prices.

Stellar Customer Service

Over 65 years as a family-owned business, we have mastered the art of friendly and personal customer service.

Hand Crafted Instruments

All violins, violas and cellos are hand-crafted by reputable and esteemed stringed instrument makers.

Resources for Players

There are violinists and violists who swear by modern shoulder rests, but not everyone agrees on their necessity.

Shoulder rests. Are they necessary or are they not? This is a question that is always being asked by students, performers and teachers. Now that you've purchased a student violin for your child, it is now a question for you, the parent.

The violin shoulder rest is not considered one of the essential violin accessories, like strings and rosin. But just about everyone agrees, a high quality and well-chosen shoulder rest that is properly set up on the violin for the player will make the violin easier to play, as well as much more comfortable to play.

The question of just how necessary a shoulder rest is to playing the violin (or viola) has risen based on the fact that use of the shoulder rest did not become popular until the later part of the Twentieth century. Most of the great violinists before 1970 didn't use a shoulder rest while performing and many of the great violinists today do not use one.

Though the shoulder rest - which attaches to the back of the violin and offers more stability - makes it simpler to play the violin, many believe that the presence of the shoulder rest on the violin dampens the violin's tone by undermining the violin's ability to naturally vibrate. Shoulder rests employ usually soft rubber feet that grip the instrument. It is this padding that is believed to retard the vibration of the violin and undermine sound.

So how does the shoulder rest make the violin easier to play? It frees up the left hand of the player by putting most of the responsibility of holding the violin upright on the chin and shoulder, simply by adding height. The left hand, then, is more free to comfortably shift through positions on the fingerboard, a necessity as the student progresses into intermediate and advanced playing.

Violin shoulder rests are available in a range of styles and costs, with professional models retailing for up to $80 and student models costing as little as $12. Rests are typically manufactured in wood, plastic or carbon fiber. Whether you are purchasing a shoulder rest from a violin shop or an online source, make sure you order the right size rest for your child's student violin. Also, because the shoulder rest is for a child, make sure that the shoulder rest is adjustable in height.

What Our Customers Say

  • Benning Violins provided a level of patient support you wouldn’t expect to find at an online violin shop.
    They walked me through the process of choosing a student instrument and the correct accessories.
    Their great caring was evident.
  • We purchased a Jay Haide violin for our son from Benning Violins online store. My son’s teacher was
    amazed at the sound and playability of the violin. He told us, ‘Whoever set up this violin knew
    how to make it sing.’ For the price, their service made it a steal.
  • We bought a Snow viola. Benning Violins rushed it in time for Christmas. When it arrived, it sounded
    better than we expected, polished to a perfect shine. It’s really good to know that a company will
    deliver what it promises. We felt well taken care of.

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