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How to choose the right guitar?

Color detail of hands playing of an old, acoustic guitar.

How do I choose a guitar when approaching this instrument? And then… acoustic or electric? What are the differences? Where do you buy it? To these and many other questions, we try to answer in this article on how to choose the right guitar.

How to choose the right guitar? How do I choose my acoustic or electric guitar when I’m starting out? If you are looking for your first acoustic or electric guitar you are in the right place, we start to see the differences between these two instruments.

The structure of the guitar

Most guitars, both acoustic and electric, share some basic features, they have six strings, a body, a neck and a headstock (where the strings are fixed). All guitars must be tuned to play properly. On the upper part of the neck, there is the keyboard on which the strings are routed. In the upper part of the keyboard under the headstock, there is the nut that through its slots carries the strings on the bridge, located at the end of the body. When the strings are plucked they vibrate between the nut and the bridge.

Acoustic vs. Electric Guitar: How to Choose the Right Guitar?

The acoustic guitar

There are some differences between acoustic guitars and electric guitars. An acoustic guitar doesn’t need to be plugged in to be heard, it’s usually bulkier and has a wooden resonance box that naturally amplifies the sound, without the use of an amplifier. The woods used in the construction of an acoustic guitar influence the sound. A quality acoustic guitar is usually made of solid spruce, cedar or other woods that produce a clear and articulated sound.

Many budget guitars are made of laminate which guarantees a sturdy construction but is not the ultimate in sound. Solid woods produce a better tone. The size of the acoustic guitar body also affects its tone. Larger instruments with dreadnought or jumbo bodies offer more volume with warmer, more rounded tones.

Smaller guitars such as the concert models have a brighter sound and accentuate the mid and high frequencies at the expense of the bass. Usually, acoustic guitars have steel strings but there are classical and flamenco guitars that although they seem very similar have nylon strings that produce a softer and sweeter sound. Nylon strings are easier to play for this reason those who start playing guitar usually use the classical one.

The electric guitar

While an electric guitar has electronic pickups that allow you to amplify the sound via an amplifier, classical guitars and acoustic guitars do not all have pickups. An electronic pickup is usually built into the bridge and allows you to capture the sounds produced by the vibrations of the strings via a preamplifier that in turn can be connected to an external amplifier or a PA system.

Here is a detailed article on acoustic guitars to get you started, alternatively you can see the list of high-end electric guitars. In an acoustic guitar, the electronics are optional compared to the electric guitar which must have good electronics to offer good tones. Pickups allow you to produce a variety of sounds ranging from a variety of styles, from country to jazz, rock, blues, heavy metal and any other genre. This versatility cannot be matched by acoustic guitar.

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