Buying Your First Guitar
Some thoughts for buying your first guitar
Two of the strongest reasons to buy an acoustic guitar are user-friendliness and price. Some musical instruments are prohibitively expensive for beginners, and they’re difficult to learn, too. Not the acoustic guitar. Acoustic guitars are easy to learn, easy to carry, easy on the ears. And you can buy an acoustic guitar for an affordable price. The most difficult challenge in purchasing an acoustic guitar is finding the ideal fit for you. In this article, we will discuss some important elements to consider when browsing the acoustic guitar market.
Whether you’re shopping for an entry-level acoustic guitar or a high-end vintage custom model, there are some questions you should ask before you settle on a purchase. After all, the overall quality of an acoustic guitar can vary widely from piece to piece, not just from model to model or brand to brand.
What is the sound quality of the acoustic guitar?
Tonality is an important consideration for many musical instruments, and that’s especially true when it comes to acoustic guitars. The strings, fretboard, sound holes, and body of a guitar all play a role in how the guitar will sound to an audience. The distance between the strings and the fretboard can also affect sound quality.
Is the acoustic guitar you’re considering part of a starter kit?
Some sellers offer complete acoustic guitar “starter kits.” A kit might include an additional set of strings, a tuner, and/or cleaning supplies. If you don’t want to have to worry about buying these things separately, you may wish to buy a starter kit.
How much does an acoustic guitar cost?
The price of acoustic guitars varies widely, from less than $100 for a basic student model to over $15,000 for a rare vintage collectible. Beginning students will not necessarily benefit from an $800 brand name acoustic guitar, but advanced musicians may want to scrutinize tone quality, craftsmanship, and material choices before investing in a new acoustic guitar.
Frequently asked questions
My son wants to learn guitar but I don’t know what kind to buy him. Are there smaller guitars for younger players?
Yes, a number of guitar manufacturers produce student-size guitars, and parents can trade up for larger sizes as their child grows and progresses.
I recently bought my first acoustic guitar, and I’ve been teaching myself how to play it. Why doesn’t my guitar have the same sound like the ones I hear at professional concerts?
Many professional musicians invest thousands of dollars in high-end guitars made from expensive and rare tonewoods. A $100 student guitar made from spruce is not going to produce that level of tonality regardless of the player’s skill level. As a beginner, your main focus should be on skills such as chord formation, fretting techniques, and basic scales. Improving tonality and performance are long-term goals.
I recently retired, and now I want to learn how to play the acoustic guitar. Am I starting too late? Don’t I have to develop calluses on my fingertips?
It is never too late to learn how to play a musical instrument. An acoustic guitar does present some unique challenges for beginners, including the formation of calluses over time. But this is not a requirement in order to become an accomplished amateur guitarist. Practically every musical instrument places some physical demands on players but developing skills like muscle memory and improvisation are tangible benefits of that extra effort.