Want to learn to play the mandolin but wondering is mandolin hard to learn? It is fine to have questions when you want to learn a new instrument. Luckily, the mandolin is not a troublesome instrument hence it is easy to learn.

It’s compact and lightweight so you can practice it anywhere you want. It has fewer strings than most other instruments such as the guitar so you can easily read the tablature.

The mandolin as we probably aware today evolved from a group of lute-like instruments known as mandores. In the beginning, there were many sorts of mandolins and some of them had 8 sets of double strings. 

The mandolin is different enough that a lot of people will be interested in what instrument you are playing. This will give you incredible gratification if you want to stand out from the crowd. 

If you do not know a lot about the mandolin and how it sounds or thinking if the mandolin is a good first instrument, then this article is just for you! If you are asking, Is Mandolin Hard to Learn? Then the answer is no. The mandolin is an incredible instrument and easy to learn if you learn it the proper way.

Also, don’t forget to see our post on what is mandolin.

Is Mandolin Hard to Learn

The mandolin is a stringed instrument that is part of the lute family. It has eight strings and is tuned in perfect fifths like a violin (G, D, An, E). 

Since the mandolin is tuned in immaculate fifths, the chord shapes that you may or may not learn on guitar will not help you when you get a mandolin. 

While this isn’t valid for all chord structures, it’s presumably simpler in case you think about the mandolin chords as the bottom four strings of a guitar flipped around. Similar to a guitar, there are a few unique forms of mandolins. 

You can discover mandolins when you listen to the bluegrass music, classical genre, jazz, as well as in some Irish and Celtic songs. 

All things considered, the mandolin is a great instrument for learning since it is not difficult to learn. However, it depends on whether you are learning it the proper way or not.


Is Mandolin Hard to Learn or Easier to Learn?


The mandolin is a simple instrument to learn. Some instruments require a lot of effort whereas the mandolin needs the least amount of effort (not that it does not require any effort). It has fewer strings than other stringed instruments, for example, the guitar and violin, so reading tablature is easier.

For the most part, stringed instruments with frets like the guitar, banjo, and mandolin are easier to learn than those that don’t have them, for example, the violin family.

If you are wondering if learning mandolin easier than guitar or not, then do not worry. Both the banjo and mandolin are easier than the guitar due to their lighter gauge strings. In case, you have a decent teacher and you are willing to rehearse 30-60 minutes daily, it will take around 3 months to master the instrument, and one year to be proficient at it. But Is Mandolin Hard to Learn for people who have not played any instrument yet? Probably not. The process can become quite difficult but trusting yourself and learning it the proper way is the key to making it easier.


The Problems You’ll Face While Learning (And How to Avoid Them)

The mandolin is pretty straightforward to learn in case you’re thinking if the mandolin is hard to play. However, you may find some obstacles in your journey to playing the mandolin. In this article, we will tell you some of the problems and tell you how to avoid them.

The mandolin is smaller than your normal acoustic guitar when comparing sizes. This can be difficult if you have a big height or large hands since both the body and the fingerboard on the mandolin are smaller as opposed to their size on the guitar.  

The mandolin is unique in terms of the methods that are required to play the instrument. You should learn both right-hand and left-hand techniques but it should not be an issue in case you have played a stringed instrument previously. 

It’s usual for people getting into playing the mandolin to discover techniques like chops, tremolo, along with cross-picking. These are normal mandolin methods so you have to ace them if you are thinking of getting into learning a ton of mandolin music. 

Another struggle which learning the mandolin brings is that you should get your fingers used to play double strings. Your fingers will need to become accustomed to holding double strings, which is not a simple thing to do as the frets on a mandolin are very small. This can be a huge issue for people with larger hands and fingers.

Now, Is Mandolin Hard to Learn for people with very small fingers? Unfortunately, the answer is yes. You are going to need to hold two strings simultaneously with the mandolin, which can be difficult to do if your fingers are too can’t reach them. 

In case, you have big hands, you may need to squish your fingers to get the right notes. So regardless of whether you have a lot of experience from learning guitar, it might take you some time to switch to mandolin and produce quality sound if you are somebody who has bigger hands and does not have experience playing a smaller fretboard. 

As the strings have more tension on them because of the short neck, you may struggle to push the strings of the mandolin down. This will make your fingers hurt, and it will feel like you are learning the guitar again.

Also, don’t forget to see our post on how to tune a mandolin.


Is mandolin easy to learn

Final Thoughts

The mandolin is an incredible choice of instrument for anybody that needs to improve their memory, increase their creativity levels as well as someone searching for a pleasant method to make money. The mandolin will have its sets of difficulties and might require a lot of training if playing instruments does not easily fall into place for you like any other instrument.

Regardless, the mandolin is an enriching instrument that will provide you with while having a ton of fun. If you are stuck on the topic of is mandolin easy to play, then do not worry yourself. You should trust yourself and believe that you can do it.

The most significant piece of your learning process is your mindset. An insightful man once stated, “If you think you can or you cannot, you are correct” — this is a statement that also applies in figuring out how to play the mandolin.

By understanding that learning an instrument requires a lot of time, you acknowledge that the process will require patience and commitment on your part so as to accomplish your objectives. 

Keep in mind that it is critical to have explicit objectives, for example, learning your favorite songs or improvising in all keys, the real bliss is in the process. The best part is that in the first weeks and months, you will have the ability to look at your progress on a daily schedule.

In case you are searching for a simple instrument to learn, you ought to reconsider your outlook. If you are looking to get familiar with an instrument and in the end become proficient at it, no instrument is easy to learn.

The more you strive into learning your instrument, the more you are going get out of it. In simple words, you will be more successful with the instrument.

The main reason for learning an instrument is to appreciate what you are doing, so make your training fun! In case, you stress out in the details of methods or the analysis of harmony, you will not have time to relax and get into a stream. 

Suppose you are working at a significant scale pattern. You have played it climbing and plummeting, however, you have to make it musical. You need to take that pattern and ad-lib with it. You can play it in triplets, play it with swing or tune in to a song in that key and develop your own part.

The mandolin offers many advantages to musicians, however, it has a couple of disadvantages. We suggest if you are keen on learning a unique stringed instrument, the mandolin is the one you should get.