Learning violin as an adult? Watch
I am a 19-year-old guy and I've always wanted to learn the violin, I'm wondering how difficult it is to learn the instrument as an adult? I have never played on any instrument before and I can't afford a teacher. Thus, I will have to learn according to a YouTube tutorial. How expensive is a starter instrument? I would just want something that sounds ok, and plays well.
Stentor or Mendini violins are good for beginners. On Amazon you can get one for less than £150. I taught myself to read music and play the piano from YouTube videos then I got a tutor to help me develop more quickly and gain better habits!
Forewarning-your fingers may bleed (it's the same for all string instruments) so just be careful and don't practice for too long to start with. I would really say no more than about 1/2 hour until you build up callouses (you'll be able to tell, the skin on the tips of your fingers will be hard), then you can gradually increase it. Most serious musicians aim for about 2-3 hours a day, but you probably won't NEED that long, as you'll have less musical commitments (concerts, performance exams etc). Also keep your left hand nails short (or right hand nails if you're left handed).
Get a beginners repertoire book. It should give you the basics of the fingerboard, reading music, bowing techniques maybe some scales, as well as some simple pieces to try. You can get some cheap violins for probably like £60-70.
I know some people are very anti grade (I used to be), but they are a good way to keep track of your progress, give you something to aim towards and if someone asks how good you are, you can actually tell them. Once you're comfortable with your beginners repertoire book, if you want to do grades look into which board to go with (ABRSM and Trinity College are the main ones. I do trinity but idk how they are for violin) and get the book(s) you need.
As you are 19, do it now, your body is flexible enough to learn to hold the fiddle between chin and shoulder-rest. BTW fancy shoulder rests cost around £25 - £40. It's uncomfortable. Ask anyone you know to try out theirs to get an idea which model of rest will suit you. Find your nearest violin shop if necessary to try out shoulder rests. Violin needs to be stable between your chin and your shoulder.