Skip the Beginner Electric Guitar


valueseeker
Registered User
Joined: 07/24/18
Posts: 5
valueseeker
Registered User
Joined: 07/24/18
Posts: 5
08/15/2018 5:31 am

Hi All,

Hoping for any advice and opinions on this topic.

Quick background - I'm not sure what I would call myself as a guitar player. I'm not a complete beginner as I've been trying to learn guitar on and off since my teens, and as Lisa McCormick said after the end of Guitar Fundamentals 1 lessons - you're not a beginner anymore. But I also wouldn't consider myself an intermediate either.

I've been learning on an acoustic but would like to purchase an electric. Doing some quick research online, many sites recommend either a Squier Strat or Epiphone Les Paul Studio. Both are considered decent beginner guitars. With most things I buy, I always prefer spending more up front and getting good quality than buying cheap first and then having to upgrade later and end up spending more overall. With that, what are your thoughts on spending more up front and buying say a Fender Strat or the higher end Epiphone Les Paul vs the beginner guitars mentioned and upgrading later?

Any suggestions would be much appreciated.


# 1
ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,404
ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,404
08/15/2018 6:36 pm

Hey & welcome to GT! Thanks for the background info. That helps.

Originally Posted by: valueseeker

I've been learning on an acoustic but would like to purchase an electric. Doing some quick research online, many sites recommend either a Squier Strat or Epiphone Les Paul Studio. Both are considered decent beginner guitars. With most things I buy, I always prefer spending more up front and getting good quality than buying cheap first and then having to upgrade later and end up spending more overall. With that, what are your thoughts on spending more up front and buying say a Fender Strat or the higher end Epiphone Les Paul vs the beginner guitars mentioned and upgrading later?

The American or Mexican Strats typically have better materials & finish work than their cheaper Squier counterparts. So if you can afford it, then it's a great idea to buy the better instrument. Not only for the playing & sound quality, but also for resale value. Same for Epi & Gibson.

However, the amp you use is just as big, if not more, of a factor when you are playing electric guitar. So, consider getting a decent small amp or you won't get the benefit of a nicer guitar.

Fender makes great small amps, as does Line6 & Boss. Remember to shop with your musical goals in mind. What style of music will you be playing? Do you need an amp with a lot of bells & whistles? How many different timbres or effects will you need? How many channels? The ability to change channels? Overall volume?

And, as always: try before you buy! There are noticiable differences in even similar models of the same brand. There's no substitute for finding the right individual instrument that works in your hands & sounds good to your ears.

Have fun gear shopping. Please ask more if necessary!


Christopher Schlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor

Christopher Schlegel Lesson Directory
# 2
valueseeker
Registered User
Joined: 07/24/18
Posts: 5
valueseeker
Registered User
Joined: 07/24/18
Posts: 5
08/17/2018 6:11 pm

Thanks very much for the reply, Christopher! Your advice gives me more confidence in spending a bit more to buy a Fender Strat or Les Paul vs the Squier.

I certainly haven't given much thought on amps but it makes sense that just like the guitar they're not all made equal.

Do you have any suggestions on specific models? I like rock and similar to the guitar would be willing to spend a bit more upfront. Middle of the road, nothing too fancy with too many features that I'll never use but don't want entry level either where I'll need to upgrade a couple years down the road.

Thanks.


# 3
northernmoore
Registered User
Joined: 02/16/18
Posts: 3
northernmoore
Registered User
Joined: 02/16/18
Posts: 3
08/18/2018 5:44 pm

I picked up my first guitar 12 months ago. Like you I started on an acoustic guirtar and I actuallypurchased an electric guitar only yesterday. I really took my time which is unlike me and actually listened to a lot of peoples advice.

Personally, I found that their was significant differences between the makers, some were harder to play than others. I eventally purchased a Fender Telecaster, the reason being was the neck profile and the sound. I went for a v shape neck which is really chunky but works for me better than all the other types I tried. As Christopher said you really need to try as many as you can until you find the one that is comfortable for you. With regard to price I went for a custom shop tele as I found that the sound/tone of the custom shop guitars through the amps below made me actually enjoy playing the guitar even more - which for me is what it is all about - enjoying it.

There was one caviat... when I purchased my guitar - 'My wife' she said that "this one has to be it for a while" so I purchased with future proofing in mind, with one eye on not having to spend all over again in a years time and wishing I bought the right one in the first place.

Because of the neck profile I was rather limited, but tried these two;[br]Fender Tele Baja - Mexican made [br]Brad Paisley road worn tele US made both have V Shaped necks

I then tried custom shop guitars and the difference for me was signifcant enough to spend the extra money.

I play in my office at home so buying an expensive tube amp really didnt make sense to me as I can't really turn it up to get the benefit, so I looked at the Bedroom Amps - A good source of information is the Andertons Guitsr website. You will find lots of videos road-testing the likes of the Yamaha THR10C/X - Vox Adio GT - Boss Katana 50 and Fender Mustang GT amps ranging from £200 - £300's. I have gone for the Boss Katana-50 which takes pedals so again future proof.

I bought new because I dont really like buying second hand. However, looking on sites like Reverb you can get some fantastic guitars at very reasonable prices.

Hope this helps...


# 4
valueseeker
Registered User
Joined: 07/24/18
Posts: 5
valueseeker
Registered User
Joined: 07/24/18
Posts: 5
08/28/2018 6:57 am

northernmoore,

Thanks for sharing your experience. It definitely helps. I didn’t know about the Reverb website. Will definitely check it out.

I went to a guitar repair shop to have my guitar setup and the guy told me not to buy new. He said electric guitars are like cars, they depreciate in value as soon as you leave the store and that I’ll get better bang for my buck. Like you, I don’t like buying used especially when I don’t know what to look for as far as damages etc.

From my research so far I’m leaning towards a new MIM Fender Stratocaster SSS.


# 5
fuzzb0x
Registered User
Joined: 04/02/13
Posts: 580
fuzzb0x
Registered User
Joined: 04/02/13
Posts: 580
08/29/2018 7:23 pm
Originally Posted by: valueseeker

northernmoore,

Thanks for sharing your experience. It definitely helps. I didn’t know about the Reverb website. Will definitely check it out.

I went to a guitar repair shop to have my guitar setup and the guy told me not to buy new. He said electric guitars are like cars, they depreciate in value as soon as you leave the store and that I’ll get better bang for my buck. Like you, I don’t like buying used especially when I don’t know what to look for as far as damages etc.

From my research so far I’m leaning towards a new MIM Fender Stratocaster SSS.

The new MIM Fender Player Series has had amazing reviews, I've been very tempted with a new strat after looking at them.


# 6
txbdan
Registered User
Joined: 08/29/18
Posts: 6
txbdan
Registered User
Joined: 08/29/18
Posts: 6
08/31/2018 2:51 am

The Classic Vibe Squier Telecaster has really great reviews.

Also the J Mascis Jazzmaster is a Squier with excellent reviews.

It seems the lower end guitars have really gotten good in the past 5-7 years or so.

At the MIM level, the 50's Baja Tele is practically developing a cult following. I hope to pick one up tomorrow!


# 7

Please register with a free account to post on the forum.