Buying an Electric Guitar for Beginners

How can you make buying an electric guitar for beginners straightforward and fun?

Research is the key to making buying an electric guitar for beginners simple. Research and keeping an open mind about the process.

If you are worried about buying the wrong guitar, don’t be since you can almost always return it.

Today we’ll take the hassle out of buying an electric guitar for beginners and focus on what’s important.

Without taking too much time, we’ll get caught up on what you need to focus on and where to begin.

Otherwise, remember that every single day people are buying their first electric guitar and it can be as easy as buying groceries.

Buying an Electric Guitar for Beginners: Decide on the Style of Music You’re Looking to Play

Image by Dennis P from Pixabay

Why is the style of music I want to play important?

Shape, features, and design are all factors that will determine the type of music that an electric guitar is meant to create.

So, you need to spend a little time thinking about what kind of music you’re going to be learning to play on your new guitar.

Someone who is only interested in playing death metal is going to want a different type of guitar with a different design and different features than someone who is looking to only play country-western music.

It’s worth it to spend a bit of time thinking about this since it will help you to make your choice later on.

The guitar for you is the one that helps you sound the way you want to sound.

Buying an Electric Guitar for Beginners: Set a Reasonable Budget

What kind of budget should I Set?

Learning what type of music you want to play means you can now set a reasonable budget for your electric guitar.

If you’re looking for a guitar to play jazz, and you’re set on that old-school jazz sound, you’re gonna have to set a larger budget than if you’re just interested in a basic guitar for playing rock and roll.

The simple reason is: A “proper” jazz guitar has a hollow body design while your standard rock guitar has a solid body design.

The cheapest hollowbody is more expensive to manufacture than a mid-level solid-body guitar, and the price will reflect that.

If you’re only interested in starting to learn the basics, a standard Stratocaster or Strat-style electric guitar is the most common and most useful choice.

The Squier Affinity Stratocaster is a popular choice for beginners since it’s easy to play, has versatile features, and comes with everything you need to get started playing.

Squier Affinity Stratocaster

Buying an Electric Guitar for Beginners: Research the Type of Guitar You’re After

How do I choose which guitar to buy?

Playability is a huge factor in buying an electric guitar but you also need to look a the different styles of electric guitar and consider how comfortable it will be to hold when you play.

Since you now know what type of guitar you’re looking for, it’s time to do some research.

What style of guitar do your favorite guitarists use? What shape? Do they all seem to use guitars with humbuckers? Or is there a brand of guitar they’re associated with?

You need to do a bit of research so you can tell the difference between the different features and models available.

It’s the only way to know whether you’ll be happier with a Jackson Dinky or a Squier Telecaster.

Image by MAGstd from Pixabay

Both are great guitars for beginners to start with, but the Dinky is more aimed at beginning shred guitarists who need easy playability while the Telecaster is a classic design that’s popular across a wide range of guitarists.

If you want to skip a lot of the research necessary, see this post on good electric guitars to start with.

Buying an Electric Guitar for Beginners: Remember: It’s a Tool!

How do I make sure I buy exactly the right guitar for me?

Developing your own playing style over time will naturally change what you want in an electric guitar.

That’s why it’s important to think of your first electric guitar as a tool to learn on, not as the end all be all in electric guitars.

It’s important to remember that once you’ve reached a certain level of proficiency in playing, you’ll discover what features and options you prefer.

Unfortunately, you won’t know this until you’ve played electric guitar for a while.

So, your first guitar should meet your basic requirements and doesn’t have to be the “perfect” electric guitar in every way.

If you expand your range of musical tastes and styles, as is common, you’ll want to buy other, different types of electric guitars.

This is why most guitarists have more than one guitar.

The guitar that’s perfect for musical style A isn’t so great for musical style B so they purchase a second guitar to expand the type of music they can play.

So the best way to look at your first electric guitar is as a tool that’ll let you learn how to play electric guitar.

Buying an Electric Guitar for Beginners: Be Confident in Your Choice

How can I make sure I buy the perfect guitar?

Learning to play the electric guitar isn’t just about improving your playing.

It also means discovering what you like and don’t like about your first electric guitar.

You’ll probably find that you prefer the sound of one type of pickup over another or discover you like the sound of a fixed bridge more than a tremolo.

That’s just as important as learning how to fret a G chord.

The perfect guitar for a beginner will be the one that meets your basic needs and is enjoyable to play.

Other than that, it’s hard to go wrong with your first guitar, so don’t get stuck in analysis paralysis.

I guarantee that if you talk to 10 guitarists, they’ll tell you that their first electric guitar wasn’t “perfect” but it was perfect for them to learn on.

Plus, if you decide your first guitar isn’t the right one for you, most places have a good return policy or you can sell it and recoup some of your money.

Either way, be confident that the guitar you buy won’t be a disappointment but a joy to learn to play on.

Buying an Electric Guitar for Beginners: FAQ

Image by Семен Ярмак from Pixabay
  • Which electric guitar should I buy for beginners?
    • Lookswise, you want an electric guitar that you enjoy the design, shape and overall look of. You also want it to be comfortable to hold and play, and to be affordable. A Stratocaster or Strat-style electric guitar is often a good choice for a beginner. For more info, please see this post for recommendations on electric guitar packages.
  • Is electric guitar okay for beginners?
    • Easily the most popular way to start learning, electric guitar is a great first step for the beginner. It’s fun for beginners to play distorted sounds and experiment with playing through an amp. It’s also easier for beginners to fret electric guitar strings since they have a smaller gauge than an acoustic guitar.
  • What do I need to know before buying an electric guitar?
    • Budgeting for your new guitar is an important step, as is knowing the type of electric guitar you’re looking for. The type of music you want to play will play a big part in which guitar you end up choosing.
    • Other things to keep in mind are what style of guitar do you like the look of? What music do you expect to play? Is the guitar to play and setup properly?