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#1
Hi. So I started learning guitar on an electric because I originaly got it to play on Rocksmith, but now I want to learn how to play legitimately. I use a pick too. I have been learning how to play acoustic songs on it too, but I haven't been learning the picking technique because I use a guitar pick. I heard that using an electric can be easier for beginners because the strings are closer to the frets. My g/f has an acoustic and I can say that the electric is definitely a lot easier on my fingers and I can put my fingers on the frets easier and faster. Is it a good thing that I'm learning on an electric?
#2
No problem there. If you're gonna play electric guitar you get an electric guitar right?
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#3
Wait, you play with a pick, but you don't use picking techniques because you use a pick? I'm sorry, but I am REALLY confused now.

Personally, I find electrics easier to play (because I forgo finger picking and using an actual pick in favor of tapping), but it's all personal preference. I think.
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#6
Quote by SLEESTAK_BRO
Cheap acoustics are generally less comfortable to play than cheap electrics, so starting out on an acoustic would only give the beginner the wrong idea. I have no idea where the "start on an acoustic guitar" concept came from.


Cheaper than buying an electric and an amp?
#8
I say no for two reasons, and yes for one reason

No, because while you might think a cheap electric sounds better than a cheap acoustic, you're forever going to be upgrading things. pickups, amps, etc. by the time you've appealed to the masses on here who tell you to buy a new amp if you have anything less than a studio recording amp, you could have bought a damn good acoustic which wouldn't ever need upgrading.

No, because if you're learning you want to hear your mistakes. Electric guitars are wonderful for distortion, but distortion hides mistakes which means you're less likely to catch your own mistakes.

Yes, because despite no #2, not hearing all your mistakes might keep you motivated to keep practicing. More people quit playing in the beginner stage than any other, and if it takes distortion and a couple easy power chord songs to jam to to keep you motivated to learn then it's better than the alternative of getting discouraged and quitting.

If you're planning on focusing on lead guitar, yeah get an electric. If you care at all about chords and rhythm, learning on an acoustic and transferring what you've learned to an electric is the way to go, it just takes a little more perseverance.
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#9
I learned on an acoustic and that's what I recommend since you don't have to deal with electricity/amps/cables/tone settings. The acoustic is much simpler in that way.

On the other side, electrics are much easier to play and are usually smaller, and more durable. Also, when you're starting learning chords and stuff, don't use distortion since it hides errors.
#10
^^ simpler isn't always better.
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#11
I've kept switching back and forth throughout, and I felt it was good to start on an electric, then move to acoustic once you have some stuff down. Then play both. They really do compliment one another so I'd say don't limit yourself to either.
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#12
i know i'm gonna get chased away with pointy sticks for saying this in the electric forum, but acoustics are better beginner instruments and better advanced instruments. electric guitar excels at making the intermediate guitar player sound like he's a pro. I currently own 4 acoustics and one electric, even though i'm in the market for another electric. I just find I learn more while playing an acoustic, and i feel the reward is greater when you finally get a technique down and everything sounds like it should...i feel like I accomplished something, without the help of reverb, or distortion, or digital processors. It's like learning to drive standard, those that can swear by it.
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Capitalization is the difference between "I helped my Uncle Jack off the horse" and "i helped my uncle jack off the horse"
Quote by stepchildusmc
either way your gonna need a big bucket... how you set it under the horse is up to you.
#13
From my experiences acoustic guitars will build up your callouses a lot faster haha. I think it personally comes down to what kind of music you like playing the most. While I do think starting on an acoustic can help you pick out your mistakes easier due to lack of distortion, you want to buy an instrument that keeps you interested. Master of Puppets doesn't come across the greatest acoustically lol.
#14
It all depends on what you wanna play bro, If your into metal, an acoustic won't sound as good. I started out on electric and I can play an acoustic fine and all. It shouldn't be a problem, as long as it has at least 6 strings you should be good to go. Another thing, if you do wanna learn how to play an acoustic, don't be afraid to throw electric guitar strings on that bad boy. Idc what anybody says about it either, my best friend's grandpa is the lead guitar player in a band called the wild coyote band or something and they play a lot of local shows. He uses regular slinkies on all of his acoustics and they sound great! Also makes an acoustic guitar easy as hell to play. Gives it a brighter sound and if you have a crappy acoustic it's not going to make much of a difference anyways.

Good luck on learning.
#15
Do you want to learn to play guitar to play Electric songs? Like rock/metal and so on? Then buy an electric. An acoustic wont be appealing. Do you want to play acoustic stuff? Then buy acoustic.
SO SIMPLE.
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#16
Personally I believe it's better to start on an acoustic as it forces you to become more accurate and electrics can hide a lot of the inaccuracies that acoustics highlight, however there are plenty of justifiable reasons for saying learning on an electric is better as well.

The people who say it depends what you want to play probably have the only real answer - if you want to play heavy stuff, you're going to need an electric eventually, and especially if it's a young person who's learning they're likely to lose interest in playing acoustically if that's what they're into.
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#17
Learn on what you want to play - if you want to play electric guitar music learn on an electric guitar, there's no real benefit to forcing yourself to learn on an acoustic.
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#18
Quote by GaryBillington
Personally I believe it's better to start on an acoustic as it forces you to become more accurate and electrics can hide a lot of the inaccuracies that acoustics highlight, however there are plenty of justifiable reasons for saying learning on an electric is better as well.



Speaking from experience, I LOVE playing electric but a good deal of my growth happens by playing acoustic where I can't mask my mistakes. Both are good to learn on tho, maybe you should learn on both?
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#19
Like people have said accoustic can be cheaper compared to the initial set up of electric. I am learning now and i do have both but when i started i had electric only and i dont see a down side to it really. I thinks its personal choice. Good luck with the basics it can be frustrating when ya start out but keep goin and enjoy yourself.
#20
It's true, do whatever gets you playing and playing well man,you might end up enjoying both
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#21
I'm one of those people who learned to drive on a stick shift and learned to play on an acoustic. And I feel like I'm a better driver and better player because of it. But if all you're ever going to do is play electric then it's fine to just learn on the electric. But don't be surprised if upon switching to acoustic you find that you're just not as good as you thought you'd be.
#22
for the serious and committed player, I think it's better to learn on acoustic. It's just easier to build good habits and good technique on an acoustic guitar. That stuff is boring, but it helps in the long run. Electric guitar is definitely easier to pick up right off the bat though and is more entertaining to play when starting out, thus easier to keep someone committed to playing, but imo, it's just so easy to develop bad habits on an electric.

And it's too easy to turn up the gain and fool yourself into thinking that you sound good/are playing well. You may not notice it, but everyone else will. With acoustic guitar, you need to learn at a slower pace and it gives you time to develop good habits. Learning to play guitar well takes some patience. Trust me, there is nothing worse than a beginner who thinks he is sweet, shredding (horribly) in a guitar center through Marshalls with the gain cranked up.
Last edited by al112987 at Jan 5, 2012,
#23
I don't really dig playing an acoustic. So when I pick one up, I don't tend to play very long.

I love playing the electric. When I pick one up I tend to lose track of time, and play for hours.

So basically, play what you enjoy most. Don't feel like you have to learn on one or the other.
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#24
Quote by OldRocker
No problem there. If you're gonna play electric guitar you get an electric guitar right?


+1
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#26
Quote by ethan_hanus
I always say to start on acoustics because they develop your finger and hand strength faster, and it forces you to learn the basics first, instead of going right into playing Through The Fire and Flames crap like most young people do.
This.

Start off on an acoustic that is badly set up and hard to play, but at least playable. Learn the basics such as "Ode to Joy" and other simple beginner songs. The reason I say to start on a guitar that's hard to play is so you'll be able to play any guitar that is put in your hands in the future.

Do not, and I repeat, DO NOT immediately jump into playing your favorite songs. It takes discipline, but just don't. Stick with the basics and nothing else for about a year, then switch to an electric.

I didn't do this when I started out. I learned a few basic chords and then I went straight into playing my favorite songs. And guess what? After 10 years of playing, I'm a shit guitar player. People say I'm a great guitarist (one dumbass at my college said I was best in the world ), but in reality I'm not. If you want to be a good and serious guitar player, learn the basics, then worry about playing other shit.
#27
Quote by ethan_hanus
I always say to start on acoustics because they develop your finger and hand strength faster, and it forces you to learn the basics first, instead of going right into playing Through The Fire and Flames crap like most young people do.

They really don't, it's certainly harder to fret cleanly on an acoustic but all that means is it's going to take you longer to get where you want in the early stages - you don't actually gain anything from that though.

All this "start on a guitar that's hard to play" is just bullshit. If you want to feel all holier-than-though because you "earned your dues" on an electric then be my guest, but it's dumb advice. Learning to play the guitar is plenty difficult enough regardless of what you start with, advising people to play something they're not that interested in because it's somehow "character building" is downright masochistic.
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#28
Quote by Ian_the_fox
This.

Start off on an acoustic that is badly set up and hard to play, but at least playable. Learn the basics such as "Ode to Joy" and other simple beginner songs. The reason I say to start on a guitar that's hard to play is so you'll be able to play any guitar that is put in your hands in the future.

Do not, and I repeat, DO NOT immediately jump into playing your favorite songs. It takes discipline, but just don't. Stick with the basics and nothing else for about a year, then switch to an electric.


This is horrible advice. A beginner needs some easy gratification, and nobody is going to feel any gratification from struggling to play ode to joy or twinkle twinkle little star on a crappy acoustic. Nobody should have to use a poorly set up guitar that's hard to play.

For complete beginners they should learn basic chords and progressions. There are a lot of songs that can be played with only 4 or 5 chords. Good riddance (time of your life) is 100% G/D/Em/C with very basic strumming/picking patterns. Any noob could learn that within a couple hours of practice and want to play it all day. Nobody wants to show their friends how they learned ode to joy.
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Capitalization is the difference between "I helped my Uncle Jack off the horse" and "i helped my uncle jack off the horse"
Quote by stepchildusmc
either way your gonna need a big bucket... how you set it under the horse is up to you.
#29
i'm struggling to comprehend why if you don't have the discipline to learn properly on electric (i.e. an instrument you actually want to play), you'd magically suddenly have the discipline to learn properly on an instrument you don't want to play.
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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.

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Et tu, br00tz?
#30
Quote by Dave_Mc
i'm struggling to comprehend why if you don't have the discipline to learn properly on electric (i.e. an instrument you actually want to play), you'd magically suddenly have the discipline to learn properly on an instrument you don't want to play.

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#31
Quote by steven seagull
They really don't, it's certainly harder to fret cleanly on an acoustic but all that means is it's going to take you longer to get where you want in the early stages - you don't actually gain anything from that though.



They don't have to, but if they are stubborn enough to struggle though it, and do it cleanly, just think how easy, and how well they will be able to do it on electric. It builds good technique and a good foundation for music theory, knowing all your basic chords, and learning the neck and where the notes are, how to change key, and such. You don't really learn any of that playing electric, most people learn scales and such when on electric, and avoid any basic music theory and learning of basic chords.
#32
Quote by ethan_hanus
They don't have to, but if they are stubborn enough to struggle though it, and do it cleanly, just think how easy, and how well they will be able to do it on electric. It builds good technique and a good foundation for music theory, knowing all your basic chords, and learning the neck and where the notes are, how to change key, and such. You don't really learn any of that playing electric, most people learn scales and such when on electric, and avoid any basic music theory and learning of basic chords.

what planet do you live on where electric guitars magically have different notes to acoustics???
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#33
I think we can all agree that the biggest problem is that he started playing on rocksmith

which i would have proof of by now if some asshole didn't lock my thread

/cough
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Capitalization is the difference between "I helped my Uncle Jack off the horse" and "i helped my uncle jack off the horse"
Quote by stepchildusmc
either way your gonna need a big bucket... how you set it under the horse is up to you.
#34
Quote by steven seagull
what planet do you live on where electric guitars magically have different notes to acoustics???



I'm not saying that, I'm saying when you have an electric guitar, and these kids now days with no discipline, they tend to ignore the basics, and just learn tabs. I've met alot of kids here from UG who have no understanding of basic music theory, or what chords even are, because they started out on electric.

It's just in my experience, when you start on acoustic, weather you want to or not, it tends to teach you the basics alot better, and build your hand strength.
#35
Quote by ethan_hanus
I'm not saying that, I'm saying when you have an electric guitar, and these kids now days with no discipline, they tend to ignore the basics, and just learn tabs. I've met alot of kids here from UG who have no understanding of basic music theory, or what chords even are, because they started out on electric.

It's just in my experience, when you start on acoustic, weather you want to or not, it tends to teach you the basics alot better, and build your hand strength.

No, it's not "because they started out on electric" at all!

Somebody's attitude and approach to learning has absolutely nothing to do with the guitar they start on and everything to do with either a lack of discipline or lack of proper instruction, whether through ignorance or laziness.
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#36
Quote by steven seagull
No, it's not "because they started out on electric" at all!

Somebody's attitude and approach to learning has absolutely nothing to do with the guitar they start on and everything to do with either a lack of discipline or lack of proper instruction, whether through ignorance or laziness.


Can you play Dragon Force on a acoustic? Metallica? Slayer? Nope, the point is to force that laziness and ignorance to make you actually learn the basic, which is my point about starting on acoustics.

The point is to not tempt the player to hit the gain channel button, and just start playing metal.
#37
You both have good points. I agree with ethan from personal experience. My first guitar was an electric, and after a little while of frustrating learning, it was too easy to thrash away to some easy stuff that sounded alright but didn't teach me anything. Eventually I learned a couple songs and instead of improving on my weak points i'd just play something that was fun to play.

Although the fault technically isn't with the electric guitar, it was with my own lack of discipline, but having the option didn't help.

Learning on an acoustic has less distractions. Learning on an electric has many distractions. Learning on an electric while playing rocksmith is 95% distractions.
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Capitalization is the difference between "I helped my Uncle Jack off the horse" and "i helped my uncle jack off the horse"
Quote by stepchildusmc
either way your gonna need a big bucket... how you set it under the horse is up to you.
#38
^^ i could argue that if you do want to play that type of stuff that getting used to controlling noise levels at high gain from the start is probably pretty useful, too.

Quote by steven seagull
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Quote by steven seagull
No, it's not "because they started out on electric" at all!

Somebody's attitude and approach to learning has absolutely nothing to do with the guitar they start on and everything to do with either a lack of discipline or lack of proper instruction, whether through ignorance or laziness.


+1
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?
#39
Quote by mike_oxbig
You both have good points.

This sums up the whole thread.

Like I said in my earlier post, I'm a believer in learning acoustically, but I can appreciate why people would want to go straight to an electric and I agree with a lot of the comments from people who say it's the better way to learn.

This is one of the many conversations I've seen several times on UG's forums and I don't believe there will ever be a conclusive answer.
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#40
Totally agree


Quote by GaryBillington
This sums up the whole thread.

Like I said in my earlier post, I'm a believer in learning acoustically, but I can appreciate why people would want to go straight to an electric and I agree with a lot of the comments from people who say it's the better way to learn.

This is one of the many conversations I've seen several times on UG's forums and I don't believe there will ever be a conclusive answer.
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