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By Rhys Lett

Buying Electric Guitars

One of the most commonly asked questions we get at the music school is “What guitar should I buy my son/daughter/husband/wife??” Here is just some of the valuable information I share with our friends of the Eastern Suburbs School of Music. This information is purely my own opinions formed from years of experience. Even after 25 years of looking through stores and stores of instruments I still get intimidated!

buying electric guitars

There is a large variety to try when buying electric guitars

I hope these tips on buying electric guitars make your purchasing choice easier. Feel free to ask us further questions by contacting us through the website, or calling on 0421 705 150.

Buying Electric Guitars – What to buy?

Okay, this one should be pretty easy – the most awesomely amazing rockin’ electric guitar you can. The red ones make you play faster too. When buying electric guitars I recommend setting a budget and trying all guitars within $400 of that price range. Don’t be afraid to ask for the best price the store can offer once you have found the one!

Buying Electric Guitars – Who are you buying for?

Are they a beginner? Is it someone that has started on a cheap acoustic and now needs something better? Or someone requiring a professional standard guitar for studying VCE? What style of music are they listen to? Guitars are made to suit certain sounds. Find out what brand of guitar your/their favourite players use. There will be something appropriate in your budget. Buying electric guitars can be a game of patience. Wait until the perfect one comes along.

Buying Electric Guitars – How much to spend?

The most commonly asked and hardest to answer question I receive on this topic. I recommend to spend as much as you possibly can. If it means waiting and saving 6 more months to get that guitar you really have your heart set on, DO IT!! Avoid buying electric guitars in a guitar buying frenzy. Trust me, I have been there, done that and regretted it. Below will give you a guide of what you can get within your budget:

Under $500 – in this range you will get starter guitars or guitar/amp packs. Brands I recommend in this pricing range are Squier, Epiphone, Ibanez and Yamaha. These brands are dedicated to producing good quality guitars in this budget range. These companies make more expensive instruments. Your trust in their brand is important. These are ideal instruments for someone who is starting as a guitarist.

$500-$1000 – a price range that is great for a hobby player that has outgrown their starter guitar and looking for something with a bit more class. Guitars in this price range have better woods and electronics. This provides better playing comfort and greater sound. Charvel are currently making guitars that are fantastic in this price range.

$1000-$1500 – Ok now we are starting to buy some seriously good guitars. High end Ibanez and USA made Fender guitars are recommended in this price range. For a hobby guitarist this price range will give you an instrument to cherish for a lifetime.

$1500 and above – professional grade instruments. The iconic Gibson Les Paul and several high end brands like Paul Reed Smith (PRS) feature in this price range. Also, if you intend on making money as a performing guitarist then I recommend spending your money on guitars in this price category.

Don’t be afraid to ask for the best price possible. Also see what extras that the shop can include. Get deals on cases, tuners, leads, straps or guitar picks to sweeten the deal.

Buying Electric Guitars – Where to buy from?

Look local. Building a relationship with your local stores is important for future purchases. They want to make you a customer for life and should go the extra mile to get your business.

Two excellent local businesses support the Eastern Suburbs School of Music. Our Boronia premises is supported by KC’s Rock Shop. In Carrum Downs see Rob and Rick at Guitars and Things. Both will provide quality and supportive information when buying electric guitars.