Here are 10 guitar buying tips to help you to make a wise descision, avoid frustration, plus save you time, and money as you search for the just the right instrument to meet your needs. The good news is… it doesn’t need to cost you an arm and a leg to find a nice guitar! Just be sure to keep in mind as a general rule: the better the instrument, the higher the price. Read these helpful suggestions to avoid making costly mistakes…
GUITAR BUYING TIP #1:
Know what you’re looking for.
There are four basic types of guitar:
ACOUSTIC/ELECTRIC – As the name implies, these guitars can be played with or without amplification.
ACOUSTIC – The word means “to hear” and refers to an instrument that can be heard without amplification. Acoustic guitars can have either nylon strings or wound steel strings.
CLASSICAL – One of the oldest types of acoustic guitar. It is designed with a wider neck to facilitate finger-picking techniques.
ELECTRIC – An instrument that needs to have amplification in order to be heard.
GUITAR BUYING TIP #2:
Buy a guitar that is best suited for the style of music you want to play. Below are some suggestions, but please keep in mind that these are only recommendations. Buying a guitar is a very personal decision, so feel free to think outside the box! Musical Styles:
Alternative: any of the 4 basic types are suitable
Blues: any of the 4 basic types are suitable
Bluegrass: acoustic steel string, acoustic/electric
Classical: acoustic nylon string classic guitar
Country: acoustic steel string, acoustic/electric, or electric
Fingerstyle: acoustic, acoustic/electric, classic
Folk: acoustic, or acoustic/electric
Folk/Rock: any of the 4 basic types are suitable
Jazz: any of the 4 basic types are suitable
Ragtime: acoustic, acoustic/electric
Rock: usually played on an electric
GUITAR BUYING TIP #3:
(When looking at the following guitars please seach around online to find other locations and other deals on these guitars that may be more suitable for you).
If you’re a beginner, be sure and take advantage of package deals if possibe. This will give you an opportunity to get started without spending a lot of money first. Package deals usually offer a guitar and some extra goodies (such as a strap, pics, case, tuner, Instructional book/dvd etc.) at an affordable price. Always ask if there is a package deal available when enquiring about guitars.
The Fender Squier Bullet Stratocaster Electric Guitar is a simple, affordable and practical guitar designed for beginners and students.
The Yamaha C40 Classical Acoustic Guitar has outstanding cost performance with exceptional playability and superb tone. This is Yamaha’s lowest priced full-sized classical guitar.
GUITAR BUYING TIP #4:
For the smaller students try one of these.
The Yamaha CS40 3/4 size Classical Guitar is a perfect instrument for small hands. With its compact body and short 580mm scale length, the inexpensive CS40 is designed with comfort in mind for the young learner who would find a full-size instrument too cumbersome. Despite the reduced dimensions, the guitar still produces a responsive, well balanced tone and the specification includes a genuine rosewood fingerboard and bridge. An excellent starter instrument that will encourage youngsters to keep playing.
The Yamaha JR1 3/4 Accoustic Guitar is a nice affordable steel string acoustic guitar for small hands. A full-size instrument is too big for very young learners of the guitar, and the little JR1, modelled on the dreadnought lines of Yamaha’s famous FG design, is the perfect answer. Its short, 540mm scale length is easy to play for even the smallest hands, while the compact body depth feels comfortable on the lap. Despite its size, the JR1 has an authentic and enthusiastic acoustic sound, which has also made the instrument popular as a go-anywhere strumming companion.
The Fender Squier Mini Strat Electric Guitar is a totally capable starter electric guitar. With 20 frets it’s perfect for small hands. Features 3 single-coil pickupsmaster volume and tone controls, rosewood fretboardand a hardtail bridge.
GUITAR BUYING TIP #5:
You will find some safety in sticking with companies that have already established a good reputation for quality merchandise and excellent service. Some well known name-brands are Ibanez, Yamaha, Fender, Ovation, Gibson, Martin, and Taylor. I often recommend Yamaha guitars for beginners because these instruments are usually well made and there is a wide selection of models to choose from. With Yamaha, you are bound to find just the right guitar for your skill level and price range that will be easy to play, stay in tune and sound good too. Later, when you’re ready to go professional and start you’re concert tour, you can upgrade if you need to.
GUITAR BUYING TIP #6:
People will sometimes put their unwanted guitars for sale on consignment at local music stores, so be sure to ask questions about this when you’re shopping around. Cash Converters (and the like) also usually has alot of great deals on good guitars.
GUITAR BUYING TIP #7:
Ask music store owners if they are planning to have any upcoming promotional sales. They may offer to put your name on their mailing list so you can stay informed and take advantage of any special offers or discounts they have in the future.
GUITAR BUYING TIP #8:
Look through classified ads and check college campus newspapers and bulletin boards. I found a great deal on a “like new” Yamaha classical guitar this way. Students are often in need of extra money to pay for tuition and books. Because of this they will often sacrifice musical instruments they are no longer using.
GUITAR BUYING TIPS 9:
Online auctions at ebay offer another money saving solution. All the models suggested above could be searched for in ebay to find a good bargain! If you looks for guitars other than the ones suggested above I recommend you stick with brand name guitars and be sure to purchase only from sellers who have a good reputation. Tip: Before you buy be sure to find out what the seller’s return policy is!
GUITAR BUYING TIP #10:
Enter contests that are being promoted online when you have the opportunity to do so. This is a great way to get some free gear if you win. Merchants generally require a valid email address in order to contact the winner and send updates of their products. You can always remove yourself from their email list after the contest is over if you want to.