#1
My brother wants to take up guitar, and we want to get him a guitar.

Maximum spend: £300
Genre: Rock, but obviously for learning he wants a solid all-rounder
Nearest city: Belfast, Northern Ireland

We were at the music shop t'other day, when I was trying an amp, and he picked up an Epiphone Vintage G-400. He thinks it's very comfortable to hold, and then I played on it a little. It seemed solid, and good for the money. Is this a good starter guitar? It's about £215 at the shop. Also, can anyone suggest other good choices for starter guitars? The shop has a good selection so testing won't be a problem.

TL;DR
Can anyone recommend a good starter guitar for my brother?
My stuff


Gibson Les Paul Studio
Ibanez ADC120
Tanglewood TGRF VS
Blackstar HT20
Roland Micro Cube
#3
What shop did you go to? Matchetts?
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#4
Yeah, it was Machett's
My stuff


Gibson Les Paul Studio
Ibanez ADC120
Tanglewood TGRF VS
Blackstar HT20
Roland Micro Cube
#5
How old/big is he? My friend got a les paul when he was 12, and he had trouble standing up with it for a while because he was so small haha!

If the size might be an issue when standing, look into a squier strat or tele.

Personally, I would go for the Epiphone SG. It's a much lighter guitar, and - in my opinion - is the best looking. It was however, my first guitar, so I am slightly biased

For that kind of money you could a Hamer as well, some of them look pretty nice, although I've never played one. Just let him have a little browse around. And then tell him to get the SG

All the best.
#7
get an epiphone les paul standard or the SG standard, because the cheaper models are really awful, even for a beginner. When he gets lessons, he'll realise in like 2/3 weeks that there are a lot of problems with the lower end epiphones.

The LP and the SG standard should both be around the £300 mark!

Hope that helps

It really depends on what feels comfortable as a first guitar, as someone stated, the Les Paul's can be heavy for younger players, and he may prefer something like the SG to start with.

all the way on the other end of the spectrum, you have guitars like the the Fender Strat (Mexican model) which is £300 in the right places, and is also a great guitar.

If you go for the LP/SG standard, or the Fender Strat, he won't need nor ask for an upgrade for many years!

I made the mistake of buying the wrong kind of guitar when I started out, and as I progressed I ended up buying a new one just 9months later to suit me better
#8
I'd go with an Epiphone Les Paul or a G400 (Standard models, anything less is pretty bad). If your brother's under 13 or has small hands I'd recommend a Squier Strat or a Tele, because back when I first started on guitar I tried a G400 and a Les Paul in a shop and couldn't slide my hand because the finish on the neck is slightly sticky and my hands were small. The main problem with a Strat or Tele is that while they're pretty versatile instruments they only have 21 frets which is an occasional source of frustration if your brother wants to play music with solos high up the fretboard.

An alternative, especially if your brother has small hands, is an Ibanez. Low end Ibanezes are usually pretty decent. The problems are that they're generally geared towards metal styles and that you'd have to look for a hard tail (The GRG121EX at the bottom of the range is one example) because low-end Ibanez tremolos tend to be pretty awful.

Strat, Les Paul and G400 are probably the best choices. It's with good reason that they're the most popular guitars around.
#9
waltons down in dublin has some killer deals on at the moment.

http://www.waltons.ie/Product/View.aspx?id=19694

would be excellent. At the current exchange rate that's about £180, and you get dimarzio pickups, wilkinson/gotoh trem, locking tuners, african mahogany body, ebony board etc.

Killer deal, you won't get specs as good as that on most guitars at double the price. The parts alone are worth about double that cost at retail prices (granted, that's somewhat academic as you wouldn't be buying the parts, and obviously the manufacturer isn't buying them at those prices, but it does go to show how good a deal the guitar is).

However, it might be worth making the trip, if you can at all, just to check how good condition it's in- i got one which was awesome, and another (the sss version) which wasn't so good and which i'm in the process of returning for a replacement.

Though at that price you might think it's worth the risk even ordering online or by phone (their website doesn't seem to like international orders ).
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
Last edited by Dave_Mc at Aug 8, 2011,
#10
I would say if you want to go down the strat route, DO NOT get a squier, get a yamaha pacifica they play great for affordable guitars
#11
Quote by Dave_Mc
waltons down in dublin has some killer deals on at the moment.

http://www.waltons.ie/Product/View.aspx?id=19694

would be excellent. At the current exchange rate that's about £180, and you get dimarzio pickups, wilkinson/gotoh trem, locking tuners, african mahogany body, ebony board etc.

Killer deal, you won't get specs as good as that on most guitars at double the price. The parts alone are worth about double that cost at retail prices (granted, that's somewhat academic as you wouldn't be buying the parts, and obviously the manufacturer isn't buying them at those prices, but it does go to show how good a deal the guitar is).

However, it might be worth making the trip, if you can at all, just to check how good condition it's in- i got one which was awesome, and another (the sss version) which wasn't so good and which i'm in the process of returning for a replacement.

Though at that price you might think it's worth the risk even ordering online or by phone (their website doesn't seem to like international orders ).


I forgot to say, he's against a trem because he tried one in the shop and apparently it felt wrong. But I'll definitely have a good look around that site, thank you.
My stuff


Gibson Les Paul Studio
Ibanez ADC120
Tanglewood TGRF VS
Blackstar HT20
Roland Micro Cube
#12
ah ok, no worries

they have different stuff on sale every week, so it can be worth checking back.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#13
The Epiphone is a solid choice for a first guitar.
If you/he can find a Yamaha Pacifica 120H, those are quite solidly built and versatile as well, for the same budget.
Squier Classic Vibe teles are excellent for the money too, so it's worth taking a look at if he likes Telecaster style guitars.
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