Apr 6th, 2010
When you are first getting into playing guitar and need to purchase one, there are three steps that every new guitarist should take when choosing their instrument. For beginners, it can sometimes feel overwhelming but following these three steps will ensure or at least give you a much better chance of getting the guitar that you love.
1. Figure out exactly what you need and what your budget allows.
The first thing you should be thinking about is what kind of music you will be wanting to play on it as well as how much you can afford.
If you decide that you want to start learning rock music, you will definitely want to be looking at electric guitars. Because of this, you will also want to factor in the price of an amplifier to go along with the guitar. For budding folk or country musicians, you may be looking into acoustic guitars. This will make things a little easier on you since you will not have to look at amps as well, but at the same time, there are a lot of different acoustic guitars out there to choose from.
2. Do you research.
You should take your time and do some research without jumping into anything to quickly. You do not want to just buy a guitar impulsively; a guitar is a big investment, so you really want to be sure you get something you like and you do not overpay for it. It is a good idea to read up on them first, comparing prices and features before settling on a guitar. Online sites like harmony-central.com and right here at frugalguitarist.com are excellent places to start your research.
If you want to get the most bang for you buck when buying a guitar, you should consider researching a beginner guitar from a major brand name. Major brand names are generally more expensive than knockoffs, but with knockoffs, you can pay the price of shoddy wiring and other flaws. Even though beginner guitars from major brand names are cheaper than more advanced guitars and you can trust that they will be well put together. That way, you can start simple, get used to your guitar, make sure you want to progress with your guitar playing, and then eventually move up to more advanced and expensive brand name guitars. A good example of an inexpensive beginner guitar is a Fender Squire.
The other advantage to choosing a wewll known brand name guitar is that when you do get to the time that you want to sell or trade it up for a higher quality guitar, it will be a lot easier to sell and hold its value better.
3. When possible, try before you buy.
You always want to test the guitar out in person before buying, to ensure that it is in perfect working order. One thing you will want to do is to shake the guitar vigorously as you listen for rattling. Another thing you will want to do is check the intonation of the guitar. Checking the intonation is quite important. To do this, you should play the harmonic at the 12th fret, and ensure that it sounds the same as the open string. You will also want to check for buzzing by strumming the guitar loudly. Obviously buzzing, rattling, and incorrect intonation are all to be avoided when buying a guitar.
If you are really on a budget, you could consider buying a used guitar. You can look online for used guitars at places like ebay.com and other online marketplaces, or you can check out pawnshops and music stores. You want to be careful buying a used guitar, though, and carefully check it in the ways mentioned earlier.
In addition, buying a guitar should be fun! So have some fun with it--after all, you get to look around, explore your options, and test out various guitars. In addition, it is a great feeling when you finally find the guitar that feels perfect for you.
About the author - For the past twenty or so years, Corey Palmer has been playing as much guitar as he can make the time for. For him, happiness is hands on a guitar neck!