Instrument Purchasing Advice

 

Guitar

- If you are purchasing a guitar for a child, the following applies

 

Guitar Size

There are 3 primary sizes for guitars: 1/2 size, 3/4 size, and full size.  

Ages 5 thru 7 should play a 1/2 size

Ages 8 thru 11 should play a 3/4 size

Ages 12 and up should play a full size guitar.

 

Electric or Acoustic

This depends on a few things.  First of all, electric guitars, when set-up properly, are actually easier to play than acoustic guitars.  So they can be a bit less trouble for a child to get playing.  Electric guitars can also be adjusted easily (we can lower or raise the height of the strings in order to make it easier to play), whereas, acoustic guitars have less flexibility when it comes to adjustment.  Some acoustics can't be adjusted at all.  For that reason, electrics are typically a safer investment.  You can purchase a terrible electric guitar too if you don't know what to look for, so I've made it easy for you.  If you'd like an electric or an acoustic guitar, here are some affordable and safe beginner models:

 

 

If you go electric, you will also need a guitar amp, a 1/4" cable, and some picks.  

 

 

- If you are an adult student, the following applies

 

You'll want to buy a full size guitar.  Check out the link above for my beginner recommendation.  Also, here's a great guide to buying an electric guitar.  It has everything you need to know about buing a new axe.  http://www.sweetwater.com/insync/electric-guitar-buying-guide/

 

Piano

I would just start out with an affordable beginner keyboard that has some learning functionality built-in.  As you grow more serious, you'll definitely want to get a keyboard with weighted keys, so that you can build-up strength as a piano player.  If you take lessons for more than a year, and know you'll continue, go for a weighted keyboard.

 

Beginner keyboard with learning functionality

Weighted Keyboard

 

Ukulele

Ukulele's are small enough for a child, so you don't need to know anything special about size.  They're one-size-fits-all.  Here's a good beginner Ukulele.  The more you spend, the easier they are to play, and the nicer they sound and look.  : )  The following is affordable and quality.

 

Ukulele link