How To Buy Your First Guitar
Knowing how to buy your first guitar as a beginner can be a daunting task as you often have no idea what to look for and can barely play the thing to know if it’s any good. Here are some tips I give to all my beginner students on buying their first guitar and hopefully you’ll find them useful.
- Decide whether it’s an electric, acoustic or nylon string guitar you’re after. Your guitar teacher should be able to help with this depending on the style you want to learn or alternatively see what your favorite guitarists uses. Different guitars are generally used for different styles such as nylon for Classical, acoustic/electric for Rock and so forth. However having said this don’t get too caught up in which guitar to chose as ultimately all guitars do the same thing meaning you can play any style on any guitar and all guitar method books can be learnt/taught/adapted for any guitar. I believe Nylon string guitars are generally good for beginners as they will be softer on the fingers and versatile enough to learn any style. If this is an option try and get a guitar with a thin neck and low action to start with as it will make playing notes and chords easier at the beginning. As you progress you may prefer a wider thicker neck for various reasons. Having said that if you have large hands consider getting a wider neck to start with.
- Stick to your budget. Being a beginner guitarist your ear isn’t quite tuned yet and you’ll probably notice very little sound quality difference between guitars, you can always upgrade or change later and if you become a good guitar player it’s my belief you’ll be able to make any guitar sing no matter how crappy someone tells you it is.
- if you’re an adult with small hands try and see if there are any beginner guitars with a thin neck. You may also want to explore 3/4 size guitars.
- Try out a few guitars that are in your price range and see how the guitars feel in your hands. Is the guitar comfortable? Does it look good? Does it sound good?
- Once you’ve chosen the guitar you want to buy take a photo of the label (make, model). You’ll find this inside the sound hole of acoustic/nylon guitars or on the back for electrics (make, model), go away to a café and do your research (if possible). Check out all the online reviews and videos of the guitar being played. This is for your piece of mind.
- Finally go back to the store, double check the guitar for any damage, scratches, chips or anything that doesn’t look right and purchase. However before you buy make sure you find out what the return policy is and details on the warranty.
How To Buy Your First Guitar Online
I always recommend physically seeing the guitar and trying before you buy. However these days with music stores closing down and more awesome deals online then buying a guitar online is sometimes the best option providing of course the vendor is trusted and has a good return policy. Before making the purchase you’ll also want to check out reviews and watch videos of the instrument being played for sound quality.
As mentioned as a beginner guitarist your ear isn’t quite tuned so it doesn’t really matter too much which guitar you purchase at the start, however try and get a guitar with a thin neck and low action as it will make playing it easier at the beginning. As you progress you may prefer a wider thicker neck for various reasons
The one thing I’ve learnt over the years is that each guitar produces a different sound and it doesn’t matter what guitar you’re using now you’ll always be on the lookout for another one.
Good luck with buying your first guitar. You can also visit my guitar shop or come visit me in the North Shore, Willoughby Sydney. I have a wide range of guitars and can also provide guitar lessons