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what to look for when buying a guitar

There are countless types and models of guitar on the market so when it comes to buying your first guitar, the novice guitar player can find themselves completely bamboozled. Although it seems like your local guitar shop has so many to choose from, there are many thousands more available to you online. So for a structured approach to buying guitars, you first need to choose between an acoustic guitar or an electric guitar. If you like your heavier rock'n'roll music or particularly like lead guitar then your choice will likely be to buy an electric guitar.

And don't worry. There is no rule that says beginners can't start with an electric guitar. Just remember to listen to how it sounds on the type of amp you will buy. If however you like the mellow sounds of some strumming by the camp fire or generally like some finger picking style guitar you will lean towards buying an acoustic guitar. Guitars are like most consumer products in that how much you pay will depend on quality, brand and sometimes history.

Some of the classic rock guitars from the sixties may only be average in terms of technical quality but they have such a history that you will pay a premium for them. There are some wonderful quality workmanship examples available in todays guitars that are very appealing but you are also able to buy some perfectly suitable models for a comparatively inexpensive price. Your personality also reflects your choice in buying guitars. Just as one person will buy an automobile based on it being a luxury brand with a powerful engine, another person will be satisfied with a car that gets them to where they want to go.

Many guitar tragics spend their time visualizing themselves owning that guitar that makes everybodies jaw drop. But others with more down to earth tastes are happy to owner one with adequate sound and quality. When you buy a good brand you typically have less to worry about in terms of the guitar quality. If on the other hand you are buying a guitar at a bargain basement price then you need to conduct your own investigation into its quality. You will need to look at the guitar's tone, it's playing action and last buy not least whether it suits you.

There are small pink acoustic guitars and there are big heavy razor-blade shaped electric guitars and everything inbetween. Pick the one that suits you. The quality of the sound from the guitar is really an individual taste.

If you are just beginning you probably won't even notice the subtle differences in tone and sustain that comes from different guitars. Even if you do notice the difference, one tone is not necessarily better or worse, just different. Guitar bodies made from Mahogany, Rosewood and Maple all produce different tones and people will have their own preferences. The feel of the guitar and how simple it is to play normally rate highly as you will be attached to it for a long time to come.

Try the guitar out. You don't have to play some technical masterpiece. Often just a clear strum on different chords gives you a good indication. Try your chords at different positions at higher frets to see how this feels. What is the action of the guitar like? Do the strings sit a long way above the fretboard at the higher frets or is it still relatively simple to play a clear sounding chord.

If you aren't comfortable doing this, take a friend with some experience with you when looking to buy your guitar for their views. Make sure the guitar feels comfortable to hold and play both sitting down and standing up. You should also check that the parts do not vibrate and that they feel reasonably solid. Only you will know which guitar is right for you to buy. Regardless of your playing ability, you should buy the best guitar you can afford and be proud of it.

There is no such thing as a guitar being too good for a beginner. Expensive guitars aren't any harder to play. In fact the action is often much easier than cheap guitars and they generally have a whole new sound way above the cheapies.

I have one very expensive guitar in my collection and I get as much enjoyment out of looking at it as I do from playing it. It is a beautiful thing.

About the writer: Terry Booth is another enthusiastic guitar fanatic interested in all things referring to buying guitars. He has brought together all the information needed to buy guitar into the one place.

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