#1
Well, I've been wondering, what are the pros and cons of having an acoustic vs electric. The thing is, if I want an electric, I would probably have to wait quite a while to actually get it. If I go for acoustic, I can spend less and still get a quality instrument and start sooner. I'm wondering what I should go for. Also, if I go for acoustic, what guitar should I get. I'd have a budget of $350-ish for guitar and accessories.
#2
electric you need an good amp to sound good, but a mediocre electric will sound good through a good amp (provided you play well).
acoustic is ampless, but their harder to amplify well, and people are more likely to notice a mediocre acoustic.
#3
To get a truly quality acoustic, you'll probably spend a lot more than on an electric tbh.

Advantages of Acoustic: play anywhere, learn the skills (if you can master acoustic, then you can easily master electric - loads of different finger picking styles etc.)
Advantages of Electric: You can play rockier stuff and get interesting cool sounds.

I started on electric, sometimes I regret it.
Epiphone Dot-335
Fender USA Tele
'82 30th anniversary Les Paul goldtop
1965 pre-CBS Fender Jaguar

Crybaby
TS-9
turbo rat
Ge-7
+many more

Fender Twin Reverb
King's Full-tube 100 watt half stack. - £300
#4
It really depends on your type of music you play..ya I know some pure metal bands have a few acoustic songs but its all about what your comfortable with to. If I were you bro I would play around both acoustics and electrics that way you get a feel for whichever one is more comfortable and easier to play. Thats just me man but ya it helps.
#5
play acoustic first, its much easier, in my opinoin. the strings are much thicker on acoustic also, so when your playing tabs and chords and then you switch to electric, youll find it easier, because electric strings are light. Electric is more of a band thing in my opinion, or too fool around with by yourself, and acoustic is more of a sing along with friends and family, take anywhere type of guitar.
#8
Well my dad says I have to go acoustic. Any recommendations for a $350-ish budget for guitar and accesories? I'll be buying picks, tuner, stand, string winder, some strings, capo, and what book, dvd, vhs, or cd should I get? Right now I can't get a teacher so any recommendations for instructional media?
#9
Biggest thing is the style. They're totally different. $350 will get you either a good electric setup for a beginner, or a good acoustic, so I wouldn't worry about your budget, only the playing styles. I play twice a week in front of 200 people with an acoustic guitar that I've got about $75 in, so forget the idea that $350 can't get you a nice acoustic. You can get portable battery powered amps so I wouldn't even worry about the fact that you'd have to have an amp on an electric.

On an acoustic, it's much more rhythmic. It's something that you would want to beat on almost like a percussion instrument. You usually don't play like this on an electric except for just showing off. You have to have an appreciation for the tone coming out of it. Acoustic is something that you would play a chord and just relish the sound, thinking "ahhh, that's nice".

Electrics, in comparison, have no soul. They have no sound of their own. Most of the tone is coming from the amp. They are easy to play, therefore you'd usually play solos and melodies, and many, if not most, just really don't sound all that great if you play the same chords as you would on an acoustic, in the same way.

So really, you need to decide if you like rhythmic beating, or like screaming melodies. Yes, there are crossovers... obviously you can play a kickin solo on an acoustic and play chords on an electric, but by and large, this is the biggest difference.
#10
Quote by gtwosaints
Well my dad says I have to go acoustic. Any recommendations for a $350-ish budget for guitar and accesories? I'll be buying picks, tuner, stand, string winder, some strings, capo, and what book, dvd, vhs, or cd should I get? Right now I can't get a teacher so any recommendations for instructional media?



Here's a very solid, quality acoustic guitar that fits well in your budget. It's $200, so that leaves you a good amount of extra cash to spend on the other items.

http://www.americanmusical.com/Item--i-YAM-FG700S-LIST


Then also, definitely get one of these Planet Waves Pro Winders: (It's a string winder, pin puller, and wire cutter all in one)

http://www.americanmusical.com/Item--i-DAD-DP0002


And for the Capo, I use a Shubb like this one, but I think any cheap clamp capo will do just fine.

http://www.americanmusical.com/Item--i-MIS-SSN


And as for a tuner, any basic one will do. For the books or teacher media, I think there's quite a big section of older threads to look through where many different good teaching media have been discussed. Just go to the search function on the topic, and type in 'guitar books' or 'guitar dvd' in the topic title. Hope this helps!


Sno
#11
As for the accessories, you can easily spend more than your entire budget on accessories alone. You really need to find a guitar you like first, get the best one you can afford. After that, you can add accessories as you find them necessary. You don't need a capo to start out. You don't need a string winder. You don't need a stand, especially if you plan on getting a case. All of that stuff can really add up. You'll have a great accessory setup, and a piece-o-sh!t guitar.
#12
Quote by corndogggy
As for the accessories, you can easily spend more than your entire budget on accessories alone. You really need to find a guitar you like first, get the best one you can afford. After that, you can add accessories as you find them necessary. You don't need a capo to start out. You don't need a string winder. You don't need a stand, especially if you plan on getting a case. All of that stuff can really add up. You'll have a great accessory setup, and a piece-o-sh!t guitar.

Well then what guitar would you recommend?
#13
Quote by joyal09
play acoustic first, its much easier, in my opinoin.


What exactly did you find easier about acoustic? Are you referring to the fact that it will be easier to transition to an electric guitar from an acoustic guitar?
#14
Quote by gtwosaints
Well then what guitar would you recommend?


Me personally, I'd recommend buying a used one locally. I've seen a $350 price tag on an amazing sounding Alvarez Jumbo that usually goes for $800. I've personally bought an Alvarez professional series PD80S for $150 which included a brand new $75 gator case. Find you one that's 3-4 years old. Usually they actually sound better than new because the wood dries out and it breaks in, but they're also like half as much.

I don't want to necessarily recommend models, but I really like Alvarez. Just don't buy the base models of any manufacturer, they're always crap. Find a middle of the line one and buy it used. Always play the guitar you're thinking about getting too, don't order it, even theoretically good guitars can sound like crap. Just play several so you know the difference. Good ones sound sweet with a slight shine/shimmer. Bad ones, unless they have brand new strings, always sound like you're playing them inside of a refrigerator box, just dull, and almost sounds like there is an echo, especially on the open A and D strings, plus the open E string won't be very loud at all.
#15
Acoustic

Harder to do harder things by a long shot
Tighter strings equal harder fingerings
Great/beautiful sounds
Perfect for Chords and fingerpicking

Electric

More impressive
Funner to use
Easier to finger notes
More aplliable with other sounds/effects
Costs more
More maintinece

Still, go with a Yamaha Pacifica electric and a Spider III 15 watt amp. It'll save you some money and is very good for practicing.
#17
Well if I did play acoustic then I could get a decent acoustic but if go electric then I would have to go for like a Microcube and a Yamaha Pacifica 112J, would I be better off getting that?
#19
The Pacifica + Microcube would be a great stater setup for an electric guitar. Pacificas are highly regarded beginner instruments, and are fun platforms for upgrades later on.

For an acoustic, I'd recommend looking for one with a solid top -- probably a solid top Sitka spruce. The tone of solid-top acoustics improves the more you play it, where as laminates do not improve, and don't last as long.

As another poster noted, Yamaha makes excellent starter acoustics with a solid top. Another option would be the Seagull S6, which is also a good value-for-money guitar.

I find acoustics a little more difficult to play at first due to the thicker strings, but this doesn't really matter in the long run, as you'll get used to it and develop good finger strength.

have fun shopping!
#20
The "funner to use" is entirely subjective. I have TONS more fun on my Alvarez acoustic that I paid $75 for than I do on my custom electric that was supposed to be $2,800. I haven't even bought a decent amp for my electric, all I have is a $50 Rogue practice amp that came from a second-hand store. It just really doesn't interest me, I mainly just got my electric because I liked the woodworking on it, and it was hand made.

It all depends on whether you like recurring rhythmic beating on it, or if you like screaming melodies and such.

More than anything you have to fall in love with the sound and soul of an acoustic. Until you do that, you'll always like electric better.
Last edited by corndogggy at Mar 31, 2008,
#21
I still can't decide. Would I be better off going to Guitar Center and trying them out?
#22
Quote by gtwosaints
I still can't decide. Would I be better off going to Guitar Center and trying them out?


If you go and try some guitars out you need to take someone with you that knows a thing or two about guitars. You wont be able to tell the difference between a good or crappy guitar so you need advice from a decent guitar player.

The guy at the store might just try to sell you the most expensive guitar he has.
#23
Quote by A Tua Prima
If you go and try some guitars out you need to take someone with you that knows a thing or two about guitars. You wont be able to tell the difference between a good or crappy guitar so you need advice from a decent guitar player.

The guy at the store might just try to sell you the most expensive guitar he has.

One of my friends has been playing guitar for about 2 years so I have someone.
#24
Just try LOTS of them, even ones you can't afford. It's obvious what sounds good and bad when you can compare them. The problem you run in to is when you only try one or two. Yeah, it might sound kinda good to you if that's all you've heard. Bad ones sound muffled and out of tune even when they are not. I've heard a $1,000 Larivee, $1,100 Taylor 310, and a $1,800 Martin all sound bad so just don't get hung up on the price.
#25
Anyone got a list of recommendations so I know what to try out, both electric and acoustic and amps.
#26
On acoustics, try out anything that is used that is at the high end of your price range. That's going to be your best deal. Specifically ask for solid top acoustics. Don't be afraid to haggle either, most places take trade-ins and jack up the used prices for trades. If you find one a little out of your price range that you like, just tell them you're paying with cash and you have X amount to offer and see if they would take it. I've paid $300 for a $400 amp that went for $750 new like that before.

It sounds like you're wanting brands, but really, you don't need to think that way. Just find one you like. Like I said before, I truly believe the mid-level offerings from Alvarez are the best bang for the buck but that's just me. All acoustics have different scale lengths, nut widths, binding types, all kinds of stuff.

More than anything though... you are not going to find a USA made one that you can afford. You're going to have to get an import. So, with that in mind, DON'T BUY ANYTHING FROM CHINA. If at all possible, buy one that was made in Korea. Korean guitar manufacturers typically do a much better job, it's a higher quality.

Electrics aren't nearly as picky, it's the electronics that do most of the work. I've got a crazy cheap "Rok Axe" that my daughter got that plays and sounds just fine. That's going to put a dent in your budget though because you're automatically going to have to buy an amp. I would highly recommend looking at some of the package deals if you go electric, many times you can pay $200 and get something like an Epiphone guitar that has an Epiphone amp, gig bag, all kinds of accessories, etc.

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Epiphone-Les-Paul-Special-II-and-Amp-Pack?sku=513150

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Epiphone-SG-Special-Electric-Guitar-Players-Pack?sku=518745

You can't hardly beat those packages for a beginner. Tuner, cd, guitar, amp, bag, cable, strap... then you'd still have like $150 left over. I guarantee that one of these will sound and work great for now.
#27
Quote by corndogggy
On acoustics, try out anything that is used that is at the high end of your price range. That's going to be your best deal. Specifically ask for solid top acoustics. Don't be afraid to haggle either, most places take trade-ins and jack up the used prices for trades. If you find one a little out of your price range that you like, just tell them you're paying with cash and you have X amount to offer and see if they would take it. I've paid $300 for a $400 amp that went for $750 new like that before.

It sounds like you're wanting brands, but really, you don't need to think that way. Just find one you like. Like I said before, I truly believe the mid-level offerings from Alvarez are the best bang for the buck but that's just me. All acoustics have different scale lengths, nut widths, binding types, all kinds of stuff.

More than anything though... you are not going to find a USA made one that you can afford. You're going to have to get an import. So, with that in mind, DON'T BUY ANYTHING FROM CHINA. If at all possible, buy one that was made in Korea. Korean guitar manufacturers typically do a much better job, it's a higher quality.

Electrics aren't nearly as picky, it's the electronics that do most of the work. I've got a crazy cheap "Rok Axe" that my daughter got that plays and sounds just fine. That's going to put a dent in your budget though because you're automatically going to have to buy an amp. I would highly recommend looking at some of the package deals if you go electric, many times you can pay $200 and get something like an Epiphone guitar that has an Epiphone amp, gig bag, all kinds of accessories, etc.

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Epiphone-Les-Paul-Special-II-and-Amp-Pack?sku=513150

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Epiphone-SG-Special-Electric-Guitar-Players-Pack?sku=518745

You can't hardly beat those packages for a beginner. Tuner, cd, guitar, amp, bag, cable, strap... then you'd still have like $150 left over. I guarantee that one of these will sound and work great for now.

I thought guitar packages were really bad quality.