Hey guys,

I'm in the process of looking for my second guitar and would be grateful if you could give me some advice I've only been playing for 15months on and off but really want to put in the hours to get better. Unfortunately my starter guitar is not really up to scratch and so I'm looking for something that is nice to play, sounds good for the music I like and will inspire me to keep learning.

I have a budget of around 600 pounds to play with and already have a fairly decent amp (line6 spider valve 112).

I really enjoy a lot of metal music (metallica) but also enjoy playing clean stuff. I guess I'm looking for a versatile guitar that can be used for different styles of music. I dont really want a tremolo, nor a floyd rose if possible as I've heard they can be annoying to set up/tune (I am still a beginner).

So far I have a few guitars in mind:



PRS SE Single cutaway

PRS SE Custom

Would you guys recommend any different guitars?
I do plan on playing as many as I can in the guitar store near where i live (nevada music linked above), but I would like a rough idea of what im looking for before I go in.

One last thing, I do have quite chubby fingers, and quite big hands. Would certain neck types suit me better? I have read that Ibanez necks are usually very thin, perhaps I would find these harder to play.

Thanks a lot for any help you can give
im about to get my 4th guitar and im getting the esp ec 1000fr. ive never owned an esp before but they have an amazing metal sound and are versitile (used by children of bodom, metallica, atreyu, static x...) before this i have been playing schecter, also a great company. check them both out the have great guitars for your price range. and make sure to go play them before you buy them. big mistake a lot of people make...good luck \m/ \m/

Live Arsenal

Schecter C-1 Hellraiser
ESP H1000 Deluxe
Ibanez RG7321

Line 6 Valve HD 100 Head
Line 6 Spider Valve 412VS 412 Cab

Shure PGX14 Wireless
Korg DTR-1000
The EC-401 is pretty good! I enjoy playing it And it's fantastic to play Metallica.
Ibanez AR307
Bugera Infinium 333XL
London City Bulldog
Line 6 Pod HD 300
Digitech Digiverb
Out of those that you listed I'd have to say the LTD, but that's just me. Go try everything that you can. You're not me or anyone on this forum. You might find you like something completly opposite to what we recommend.
That being said, don't shy away from brands like Washburn or Cort. They don't get alot of mention on these forums but the models around that price range are definetly solid reliable instruments.
Thanks a lot for the replies.

Yeah, the LTD is probably my favourite atm, but the guitar shop near me don't stock them. A bit annoying but I guess its worth the trip to try it out.

I did try the PRS SE custom a couple of weeks ago and couldn't believe how good the neck felt to play. So effortless. Probably because I was used to a cheap beginners guitar, but still, I can imagine it being much easier to learn on.
The PRS SE Singlecut is great to play. I'd say it'd be better than the LTD EC-401.
I assume the SE Custom is of a similar standard to the singlecut, but I haven't tried one of those.

The Ibanez would be good, but for £600 you could get much more.

Actually for £600 you can get a lot better than the ones you've suggested. I managed to get my Carvin for £600 (new, not used), which is made in US, where the guitars you suggested are all Korean/Indonesian/Chinese etc etc.
Look around, and don't be afraid to go used!
If you're truly looking for versatility, I'd choose either of the PRS's mainly because active pickupss generally just have a horrible clean. But as mentioned you can do so much better for that amount of money, look at Godins for example.
joey/punk: thanks for the advice.

I have to be honest, I haven't actually heard of Carvin or Godin before. I cant find many UK based suppliers either, so I'm not sure I would be able to try them out easily.

Are there any other guitars for ~£600 that I am overlooking?
Washburn X50 Pro would be off the top of my head as well as the Michael Kelly Vex Deluxe but I'm not too sure on their UK pricing only the US ones.
Quote by vdave
joey/punk: thanks for the advice.

I have to be honest, I haven't actually heard of Carvin or Godin before. I cant find many UK based suppliers either, so I'm not sure I would be able to try them out easily.

Are there any other guitars for ~£600 that I am overlooking?

Carvin is all internet based as far as I know, all the product is custom work. Check out their website and you can fiddle with guitars and options all day long. You will not get better quality than Carvin for $1000 or so. I have a nice Ibanez and am considering a Carvin for my next guitar, it's nice to be able to get EXACTLY what you want.

If you prefer something a little more readily available and easier to get, I really like that Ibanez except it's such a standard, boring finish IMO. Neck through is nice though, which most RG's aren't. You can get more for your money elsewhere though, maybe look into the Prestige line which is a little more nicely built.
I'd get the PRS SE Costom for the sole fact that they discontinued it. If you can, spring for the 24 fret version.
Small update:

Haven't bought anything yet, but my local guitar shop are having a sale at the moment. Gibson LP Studios are under £600.

Obviously this sounds like a great deal, but I haven't seen this guitar recommended anywhere in price range on this forum.

Surely they are worth looking into at this price?
The RG and the LTD both have emgs which is what James and Kirk use so I chose one of those if I were you. Id get the RG tho because I love neck on it and im not really a fan of the LP shape, but its all up to you.
Oh yeah try Michael Kelly for sure if you can, go onto Merchant City Music website for stuff in the UK, they're incredible guitars for the price, hardware similar to £1000+ gibsons.
Quote by slash11896
I picked up my guitar this morning and started playing next thing i know i cant stop playing In the key of A, the first letter or her name, I ended up recording a whole song in A.

Quote by WhiskeyFace
I like women with balls.
If you can get your hands on one,
a Schecter C1+ is a very versatile guitar that is very underpriced...