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Old 02-08-2009, 07:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Exclamation Need Help! Buying First Guitar.

Hi, I'm looking for any suggestions on buying my first acoustic guitar. I have looked over a few used guitars on craigslist, but I was not sure how much I should pay or what I should be paying for. The first guitar I saw for sale was a $100 Fender Starcaster with new strings, picks, a case, and a tuner (Fender Starcaster Acoustic $100 OBO). Another is a entry level classical acoustic for $35 with a gig bag and a set of strings (Classical Acoustic). The third is an Ariana acoustic guitar for $75 with a starp, gig bag, and string set (Ariana Acoustic Guitar). Any suggestions or opinions anyone could give me would be a great help, since I'm looking to purchase a guitar before the next week is out. Thank you in advance for any advice you have.
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Old 02-08-2009, 07:34 PM   #2 (permalink)
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We keep a few sub-$250 Yamaha guitars around the house and they sound and play great. You could probably pick one up fairly cheap.
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Old 02-08-2009, 07:45 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Alfred View Post
We keep a few sub-$250 Yamaha guitars around the house and they sound and play great. You could probably pick one up fairly cheap.
Agreed. This was my first guitar. Some general advice I would add is:
1. Start of small (cheap). It's hard to regret buying a guitar you paid less than $200 for.
2. To quote the grandpa from little miss sunshine: "**** a lot of women" ... or play a lot of guitars, and see what you like
3. Never stop looking. Even when you're not seriously in the market for a new guitar don't stop looking online, in magazines, and especially in pawn shops. You could find a great deal, or just a great guitar that will keep you wanting to play
4. Haggle, haggle, haggle. Don't be afraid to look cheap. Especially if you end up buying a guitar from a big chain like Guitar Center - they have HUGE markups and are usually are willing to mark it down at least 5-10%
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Old 02-09-2009, 01:41 AM   #4 (permalink)
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hate to burst your bubble but it seems like you're looking at junk

a $35 'classical' with a gig bag is too good to be true. heck a gig back alone normally sells for that much, odds are it's decorative and would cause you more hassle to learn on than it's worth.

the fender 'starcaster' is the name of a hollowbody electric it used to offer in the late 70s early 80s. would be worth thousands had fender not re-used the name for it's intro packs and 3/4 size children's acoustic guitar. another thing to note from the ad.... There are no scratches, just a small crack on the neck.... don't even waste your time on this ad anymore.

the ariana is basically a no-name but actually sounds like a legit low-end acoustic guitar based on the ad.

personally i've got a low-end yamaha FG-170. i got lucky, yamaha instruments tend to be very hit or miss. there's no harm in trying multiple instruments (or bring a friend who's got some skills to try for you).

best advice i can offer is try before you buy. pawn shops are your friend especially when you're looking for a cheap starter instrument. don't worry about the name on the headstock, at this point in the game the most important features for you should be a straight neck and good tuning pegs.

above all though, remember to have fun, playing music should never feel like a competition.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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$1,980 les paul classic, black finish,white pick guard...sell it to you for $1...lol...i got one for christmas
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Old 02-09-2009, 05:05 PM   #6 (permalink)
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$1,980 les paul classic, black finish,white pick guard...sell it to you for $1...lol...i got one for christmas
but the real question is can you do more than jimmy page poses with it?
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Old 02-10-2009, 03:41 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Is that your maximum price range? Because you could probably (with a little help) find a great / comfortable electric guitar for under $500 Then of course you can buy a pretty decent practice amp for the same...
The thing is, i learnt from experience, that it is harder to be motivated when you hear **** sounds coming out of your amp - but it doesn`t cost the earth (these days) to get (almost) what you might hear on your favourite CDs....


If thats out of reach, then personally i`m a fan of cheap nylon string guitars for those first 6 months of learning - they`re cheap, you can bash them around and they won`t kill your fingers
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Old 02-10-2009, 09:18 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Recently I've been noticing you can get a really nice tone from a hudson and they can be quite cheap too, Worth a gander...
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Old 02-10-2009, 03:42 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Thank you all for your comments and suggestions. As far as my price range goes, I don't really have much to spend. Maybe $150 to $200 at the most. I figure I can attempt to find something good in that range on craigslist or perhaps ebay even. But there are some guitar/music shops a few miles from where I live, so I will probably check them out and see what they have to offer as well.
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Old 02-10-2009, 04:59 PM   #10 (permalink)
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But there are some guitar/music shops a few miles from where I live, so I will probably check them out and see what they have to offer as well.
Definitely do this, don't be afraid to tell the clerk that you're just starting out too. If they're a reputable place they 'will' help you find something right for you to start with. The concept is that if they hook you up properly to start you'll go back in a few years once you're ready to get a higher quality instrument.

You might be able to save a few dollars going through CL or ebay, but there's something to be said about being able to walk back into that same brick and mortar store in a few years and have the same clerk who sold you your very first guitar hook you up with a nice martin or taylor.
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