#1
I spend a lot of time in guitar stores listening to people who believe that a cheap guitar is a beginner guitar. Consider this - there's no such thing as a "beginner" car or a "beginner" couch. Cheap in this case simply means cheap, and when you're getting to the sub $400 guitars and especially sub $300 guitars, mostly cheap means poor sound and poor build quality, which can mean a guitar that has problems or worse - gives the player problems.

A guitar with a hideously high action - all too common in cheap guitars - will keep a new player from playing. Cheap guitars tend to go out of tune or have tuners that strip in the nearish future and then go out of tune. They are frustrating to play, and a new player will probably find it too much work to bother with that much. Worse, they will think playing a guitar is that annoying. I know lots of people with cheap crappy guitars who stopped after a brief time for that very reason.

Buy a better guitar and you'll WANT to play. It'll sound good, it won't have sharp fret edges that annoy you, it won't have unfixable high action, crappy untunable tuners. It will be intonated - that means all the strings will sound in tune while you play chords. I spent years playing a guitar with an unintonated b string, and it was soooo annoying i can't even begin to tell you.

I wouldn't give something like that to a beginner and expect them to want to play it.

The greatest thing i've read on this subject is here
http://www.mccabes.com/usedrent.html
Here's an excerpt:

Quote by McCabe's
"Beginners need better guitars than experienced players, but sadly, they seldom get them. That is often why beginners quit. This is not a trick to get you to buy a better guitar than you need, it's just a fact. An experienced player can mash down the strings on almost any piece of junk and allow for its defects. A beginner has tender fingers, and underdeveloped muscles. An experienced player knows where unwanted buzzes are coming from and can compensate. A beginner is usually prone to string buzz, because he/she is not clear if the cause is bad technique or a bad (or badly adjusted) instrument. It's no fun playing a guitar that buzzes when you don't want it to, and it makes practice less effective if you have to wrestle with your fretboard."

And btw, if you live in the Los Angeles area or are visiting, McCabe's is the place to go. Tons of reasonably priced guitars, rentals (any guitar under $500 you can rent for 3 months), reasonable layaway policy, in house luthier who really knows his stuff, high end guitars in brands I've never gotten to see in person anywhere else and free coffee.
Last edited by patticake at Nov 21, 2009,
#2
Quote by patticake

And btw, if you live in the Los Angeles area or are visiting, McCabe's is the place to go. Tons of reasonably priced guitars, rentals (any guitar under $500 you can rent for 3 months), reasonable layaway policy, in house luthier who really knows his stuff, high end guitars in brands I've never gotten to see in person anywhere else and free coffee.


Careful, you're bordering on spam here.
#4
Chill out, its only a a friendly and useful recommendation. Nice post. So so true.
"The time I burned my guitar it was like a sacrifice. You sacrifice the things you love. I love my guitar."- Jimi Hendrix
Last edited by randomtom at Nov 21, 2009,
#5
i don't work for mccabe's and i never have. in fact, i have never worked for any guitar store or even in retail. mccabe's is worth knowing about as one of the best resources for those in l.a. who want to try out high end guitars or unusual brands of more reasonably priced guitars.

in fact, i'm going there today - rumor has it they have in a particular blueridge parlor i wanted to try out.
#6
Quote by pag_slash_2
Careful, you're bordering on spam here.



I would never find the recommendation of a good shop spam or advertising. Chill out dude.

Gear:
Partscaster/Tele into a bunch of pedals, a Maz 18 head, and a Z Best cab.
#7
Quote by roamingbard13
I would never find the recommendation of a good shop spam or advertising. Chill out dude.


Neither would I. I've recommended The 12th Fret a couple of times because it's the best high-end store in Toronto, without a doubt.
Equipment:
- Art & Lutherie Cedar CW (SOLD! )
- Martin D-16RGT w/ LR Baggs M1 Active Soundhole Pickup
- Seagull 25th Anniversary Flame Maple w/ LR Baggs Micro EQ

Have an acoustic guitar? Don't let your guitar dry out! Click here.
#8
ive been procrastinating going to mccabes lol. its like 1 bus away from my house and im too lazy to go.

do they really give free coffee?
Classical Guitarist
#9
yes - mccabe's has had free coffee on the right as you're coming in, and free pics on the left side of the check out counter. they've had both for as long as i can remember and they have never tried to sell me anything, although they will occasionally ask if you need help. a truly awesome store.

Quote by Zep_shizzle
ive been procrastinating going to mcabes lol. its like 1 bus away from my house and im too lazy to go.

do they really give free coffee?
#10
Doesn't really count as spam at all.
Is recommending somebody which guitar to buy spam? No, exactly!

Good article. Having seen many beginners start at fail because of this, I can only nod my head sadly in agreement.

I mean, sure, a newer guitarist shouldn't use a terrible guitar, but what kind of normal person is going to spend hundreds more on an instrument that they don't even know whether they'll enjoy playing or be any good at?
Though I suppose if you invest more into one at the start, it's more of an incentive to keep playing, so you don't feel as though it has been a waste.

One technique for new players that I've found to be quite helpful is to ask around guitarists that you know or to befriend guitarists. Alot of times they'll be happy to simply give you a guitar that perhaps they don't use anymore, but is still in great condition.
That's what I did, anyway. I got a half decent Yamaha Strat and 30W amp for £40, which I'm pleased with. XD
It plays fine, the only problem is that the fretboard was pretty grimy.
#11
Quote by pag_slash_2
Careful, you're bordering on spam here.



Theres one in every crowd......