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Looking for my first guitar.

post #1 of 55
Thread Starter 
I am thinking of finally picking up a guitar. I took a semester of classes in high school almost 2 years ago and loved it. I was pretty good, but did not continue learning after the class ended so now I forgot everything. Now with new Guitar Hero game, I decided to get an actual guitar. What do you recommend as a good beginner's guitar?

Should I get an acoustic or electric? I would like to possibly spend under $300 for guitar and amp or just guitar if I get acoustic... that should include any extras that I might need.

Thanks.
post #2 of 55
depends on what music if you like. Most of the music that I like is played on acoustic guitar so I got a Takamine electric/acoustic. Go around and look at guitar stores and fool around with different guitars to find the sound you like!
post #3 of 55
i would definitely go to 30th Street Guitars (directions on their website!) and just start pulling guitars off the walls at random for ones that look cool. Do this under supervision of the salesfolk tho since they are all over 300 bucks (sometimes 10 times more). Just learn one or two chords before you go tho and strum them slow and listen. If you like what you hear, start googling for cheaper alternatives of that type or report back here and we can help!

There are soooo many choices, so yep try a ton out and let us know what you think - living in NYC will spoil the casual buyer!
post #4 of 55
I agree - go play some. I could spend all day in Guitar Center harassing the sales people. I wouldn't buy anything in there (I don't like their policies), but it's a great place to burn a long lunch finding a guitar that feels right.

GAD
post #5 of 55
Thread Starter 
Well I dont know how it is suppose to sound so I think I would base my decision on looks alone which I really don't want to do. I mainly listen to rock and thats would I'd like to play.
Do you think I should go for acoustic or electric?
post #6 of 55
I was in a very similar situation a few years back and decided to go electric. I knew that acoustic was a better learning platform, but I rationalized that the extra fun in playing around with amplification and sounds would help me retain interest in playing...I'd say it has definitely helped.

Electric action is much lighter, so it's "easier" to play. Going from acoustic to electric, the electric action feels like greased lightning. Going the other direction can be a bit of a rude awakening...nothing terrible, but you do build better hand/finger strength on an acoustic.

I'd say the decision ultimately depends on your goals with the instrument. If you're looking to really learn to play guitar the "right way", I think most would say acoustic first. If you're just looking for something fun to play around with, with no "serious" aspirations (which describes me), go electric...it's probably more fun out-of-the-box. At least that's what it's been for me.

My first electric is here:
http://www.godinguitars.com/godinfreewayclassicp.htm
I highly recommend this guitar to any beginner looking to get into a quality electric on the cheap. You will be hard-pressed to find a negative review on this guitar anywhere...I'd venture to say that it's the best guitar you can find at that price point. Yes, it's a little outside your price range, but not by much. You should be able to find one around $400-ish...less if you can find one used.

My first amp is here:
http://www.behringer.com/GM110/index.cfm?lang=eng
Again, hard-pressed to find a negative review on this amp anywhere. You should be able to find one around $100-ish...less if you really try. Check out some of the reviews here:
http://reviews.harmony-central.com/r...110+Combo/10/1

Altogether, you should be able to get both the amp & guitar for $500-ish new. I think it's a tough combo to beat at the price point...truly.

Lastly, you can forego an amp altogether by patching directly into your PC and playing back through your speakers. I use an M-Audio DMP3 preamp between my guitar and my EMU 1212 to do just this with decent results. The EMU software bundle comes with a bunch of cool sounds...it's fun to play around with.

Hope it helps.

Peace,

Graz

Edited to include obligatory, self-serving pic:
post #7 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrSlacker View Post
Well I dont know how it is suppose to sound so I think I would base my decision on looks alone which I really don't want to do. I mainly listen to rock and thats would I'd like to play.
Do you think I should go for acoustic or electric?
you have hi-fi gear.
You listen to guitars on your hi-fi gear.
You know what guitars are supposed to sound like!
post #8 of 55
What ever you think sounds good will sound good. It's all subjective. If you're going for an electric, the most important thing is the action and feel of the neck, and your overall comfort of the guitar. Make sure there is no buzzing of the frets, action is consistent, etc. If you like how it plays, then you should probably go for that.

Sound will change based on amp and pickups, which you can always swap out if you want. The important thing here is that you get a guitar you feel good w/ to learn on. For 300 you won't find the end all be all guitar for yourself unless you're incredibly fortunate. Just dive in and start playing.

I would probably try to find a used guitar if you want the best value. Just bring along a friend who knows what he's talking about (doesn't everyone have one?), and browse through. Or you can find a store w/ a good reputation and trust their sales guy.

If you find something you like, just post it up here if you have questions, I'm sure we'll be able to help you out.
post #9 of 55
Thread Starter 
What about this Takamine EG341C Acoustic-Electric Guitar? I am thinking of picking up an acoustic because I like acoustic songs, but I'd like to have the ability to record what I am playing or just fool around...
post #10 of 55
I think i've played that model before at some coffee shop by me has in their cafe. Pretty solid from what I remembered, but I could be wrong. Takamine makes good solid acoustics, and I don't think you can go wrong.

I know martin makes an acoustic/electric in the same price range, you might want to check that out too. Never played that guitar though.
post #11 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrSlacker View Post
I am thinking of finally picking up a guitar. I took a semester of classes in high school almost 2 years ago and loved it. I was pretty good, but did not continue learning after the class ended so now I forgot everything. Now with new Guitar Hero game, I decided to get an actual guitar. What do you recommend as a good beginner's guitar?

Should I get an acoustic or electric? I would like to possibly spend under $300 for guitar and amp or just guitar if I get acoustic... that should include any extras that I might need.

Thanks.
Martin makes excellent guitars. Under $300 I am not sure of. Ovation is another good choice. Tacoma is another good choice.
post #12 of 55
Thread Starter 
Are there any other suggestions?
post #13 of 55
Well, I'm not much of a guitarist, but I'd suggest an acoustic for your first guitar. If you plan to spend $300, you'll get a pretty decent instrument...for example a new Seagull can be had for that price range. This is a highly recommended beginner guitar.

With electric + amp, you are into $500-600 just for a half-decent setup. Check out the Eastwood Guitars site for an idea.
post #14 of 55
Yeah, Seagull does have some good budget acoustics.

My personal favorite in the budget acoustic segment are the Alvarez dreadnoughts. Some of them sound ridiculously good for the price.
post #15 of 55
I just bought a Takamine acoustic. Set out looking to buy a Martin but after playing dozens of different guitars a salesman at Guitar Center actually talked me down from the $700 Martin that I was looking at into a $300 Takamine. I asked him if he thought that the Martin that I was leaning towards was the best sounding guitar in my price range. He pondered a minute and then he pulled down this Takamine. I played it before he told me the price and I was instantly sold. I got out the door with the guitar, six sets of Martin 'Marquis' strings, a humidifier, and a really nice hard case for just under $400.



Takamine GS330S

**EDIT** It's actually a cedar top
-Solid cedar top/laminate back and sides
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