In this article, you will learn the highest note a violin can play.
The highest playable note on the violin is A7, assuming that your violin is tuned in perfect fifths. However, it’s important to note that E7 is a practical limit for composing violin music, as the notes above this are difficult to play and not commonly used in violin sheet music.
You can try to play the A7 yourself by placing your finger on the E string at the end of the fingerboard and checking for correct intonation with the open A string.
The frequency of the highest note on the violin is 3520Hz, which is four octaves higher than the lowest A note. To better understand the difference in pitch, locate the lowest A note, A3, by placing your first finger on the G string in the first position.
Please also know that depending on who you ask, the highest playable note on the violin is debatable. Here’s why:
- The actual highest note on your violin may vary if your fingerboard is longer or shorter than those typically used in modern violins.
- The highest note will also be different if the violin strings are tuned in a unique fashion (commonly called cross tuning or, from Italian, “scordatura”); for example, instead of GDAE, it’s FCGD.
- Even higher notes are possible if artificial harmonics are taken into consideration (more on harmonics here).
How can you find the highest note in the sheet music?
The highest note, A7, is located on the eighth ledger line above the staff. To make it easier for musicians to read, it is sometimes located above the fourth ledger line with the annotation “8va,” which means ottava – to play an octave higher than written. You can see both examples of the notation in this picture:
Where can you find the highest note on the violin played in classical music?
Such a high note is not often used in pieces, regardless of the genre. Here, you can listen to three pieces that contain that extremely lofty note. I chose videos with sheet music so you can try to locate the A7 on your own.