Buying the first guitar has always been a wonderful experience for youth guitar junkies. You are about to open a range of possibilities. However, it could be depressing if you start the journey with a guitar that sounds bad or gets broken.
You have made a bold decision by planning to buy an electric guitar. Congratulations on that. The sound an electric guitar makes can energize anyone. If you’re thinking of boosting your potential, you deserve to get the best starter electric guitar.
These days, beginner electric guitars are quite poor in terms of quality, range, and performance. Sadly, there are countless options for these kinds of guitars in the market. It could be difficult for anyone to find the best one, especially the youth.
That’s the reason we’ve put together a guide on the best electric guitars for the beginner. Whether you want to be the next Joe Strummer or Jimi Hendrix, these guitars will complement your dream.
So, let’s dive in and see we have got you covered.
How Much Should I Spend On My First Electric Guitar?
If you are just starting, possibly you know how much to spend on your first electric guitar. It is wise to keep your budget low on your beginner electric guitar. The budget matters until you are not skilled enough.
But, in most cases, low price means cheaper wood, low-quality electronics, and hardware. The overall quality of that low-cost electric guitar is okay instead of fantastic. You are not supposed to end up with those models.
So what price ranges are appropriate for the beginner electric guitars? Well, the suitable price range for beginner electric guitars is between $200 and $500. Anything below this range is mostly garbage.
Our top picks..
Have a quick glimpse of our top picks from the below chart. This chart will help you to get an overview of the key features of the best starter electric guitar.
Best Electric Guitars for Beginners Reviews of 2020
Anyone who is about to start their musical journey can get thousands of suggestions from the internet and friends. We know it does nothing but make a rising guitarist confused.
That’s why; we’ve done comprehensive research to find the best options in the market. We have assembled a list to give you a head start. They will undoubtedly serve you well for years to come. So, let’s get straight into it without further ado.
Best Overall Starter Electric Guitar
Best Budget Starter Electric Guitar
Best Runner up Starter Electric Guitar
Best Under 100$ Starter Electric Guitar
Best Starter Electric Guitar For Kids
Bonus Suggestions for Starter Electric Guitars
Starter Electric Guitar Buying Guide for Beginners
While buying your first guitar, it is wise to give it a second thought. Decide, are you just buying it to learn? Will you upgrade it in a year or two? If so, you may be better off trying what you can afford.
As you are absolutely new to the guitar world, you are likely doing to know much. Luckily for you, here we’ll discuss what would help you get started.
Different Body Types of an Electric Guitar
Electric guitars come with three different body types: solid body, hollow body, and semi-hollow body. Do you know how they differ? Well, the main difference is in their construction and the resonance they produce.
Let’s find out the benefits and downsides of each body types;
- Solid-Body: As the name suggests, a solid-body guitar is the sturdiest one. It offers more sustain and louder sound. There is no feedback issue with a solid body guitar, even at higher volumes.
You can dive into rock, metal, or other heavy music with a solid body guitar. However, it may not offer that much resonance as others.
- Hollow Body: The hollow body is similar to the body of acoustic guitars. It gives more resonance with lots of basses. But, the feedback is an issue with hollow body electric guitars.
- Semi-Hollow Body: These electric guitars have a solid center wood inside the guitar body. It provides stability to the guitar structure. You’ll get better sustain and a warm sound.
Which Type of Electric Guitar is Easy to Play?
As a beginner, you might be confused that which one to choose? Which is the easiest type to play between solid body, hollow body, and semi-hollow body guitars?
Well, as your first guitar, you should opt for a solid body guitar. They are easier to handle. You can control it better with an amplifier. Also, they last longer even if you accidentally hit the guitar with the wall.
Electric guitars, especially the solid-body guitar, can be built into different shapes. The builders can craft the wood in any shape. The most popular shapes are single-cutaway Les Paul, double-cutaway shape, telecaster style shape, etc.
There are also some cool styles available for extroverted beginners. For example, V-shaped or Z-shaped guitars. These guitars come with eye-catching paint.
Does electric guitar shape matters?
Well, the sound doesn’t depend on much one the shape of an electric guitar. The guitars like flying V and explorer weigh almost the same and have the same pickups will sound quite the same. But, the shape of the guitar does impact on how you feel. You may feel uncomfortable to play any certainly shaped guitars.
The Type and Quality of Wood
What influences the tone and sustain of the guitar is the quality of body wood. The electric guitar can be made of different types of wood. Each has its own purpose and characteristics.
- Alder provides a very warm sound. It is best for a full and balanced tone.
- Mahogany is mostly used by the famous brand Gibson for years. It gives a mellow and warm tone.
- Maple is the best option to use in the neck and fretboard. It provides a bright tone.
- Basswood is the most common type used in the guitar body. It offers a warm and grizzly tone.
- Rosewood is another popular option to use in the fretboard. It offers a big and warm tone.
- Walnut is mostly used for body and neck. It is brighter than its mahogany counterparts, along with mid-range and high attack.
The pickups in an electric guitar detect the vibrations of the strings. Then, it converts the vibrations into a signal that the amplifier can understand. There are three types of pickups in an electric guitar.
- The single coil pickup is the most basic type that tends to generate crisp and bright sound. Since the tone can cut through the overall mix, it’s an excellent choice for lead players. However, it often creates hum and undesirable noise in the background.
- The humbucker pickup is a solution for the hum with single-coil pickups. It offers a more powerful, thicker, and more massive sound. Besides, humbucker pickups are an excellent choice for hard rock, metal, and jazz.
- The active pickup requires a battery to operate. Also, it offers a preamp along with sound-shaping controls on the guitar. Active pickups produce a more controlled and clearer sound.
As a beginner, you should look for a guitar with multiple pickups. So you can use different pickup combinations for your desired sound.
Neck Shape and Types
Most electric guitars come with either a mahogany or maple neck with a maple or rosewood fretboard. Along with the neck wood, the shapes and type of the neck also matter. The electric guitar neck is available in different shapes and types.
You should pick what you find comfortable to play. The neck types depend on the joint of the neck with the guitar body.
- The bolt-on neck is bolted to the guitar body. Though it is a less-expensive type, also it provides less sustain and resonance.
- The neck-through types of the neck go through the guitar body. It offers the maximum sustain and resonance. Also, these necks make the entire guitar more stable.
- The set necks type of neck is glued to the guitar body. It offers better sustain and resonance than a bolt-on neck. However, it requires expensive maintenance costs.
In a guitar, the bridge is located at the lower end of the guitar body. That’s where the strings are attached. An electric guitar can have either a tremolo bridge or a fixed bridge.
- The tremolo bridge offers a range of effects from vibrato to full-on dive-bombs. When you play lead solo, it can sound amazing. It can affect tuning if the bridge and nut locks.
- The fixed bridge offers excellent sustain and tuning stability.
There are different types of tremolo and fixed bridge in an electric guitar. A few of them are; Tune-O-Matic, Bigsby, Floyd Rose, Fulcrum Vibrato, String-Through, etc.
The scale length denotes the length of the strings. It means the length from nut to bridge. The best beginner electric guitar has a scale length of 24-25 inches.
What Is The Easiest Guitar To Learn On?
You are here because you’ve chosen the electric guitar as your first guitar. Still, you may have yet to decide which one is the easiest to learn. Whichever you choose between an electric and acoustic guitar, it should suit your level of playing.
In terms of playability, an electric guitar is the easiest guitar to learn and play. As a beginner, it will let you gain knowledge about the technical side of the guitar. Besides, the strings in an electric guitar are thinner, and the action is lower.
So, you can quickly press down the strings. In your early guitar learning stage, its narrower neck can also help. Also, if you want to play rock, getting an electric guitar is the best option.
However, the top-quality acoustic guitars usually have a very high action. It requires good finger strength to play. An acoustic guitar doesn’t provide the versatility needed to adapt different techniques as a beginner.
The Second Opinion!
Most beginners can play an acoustic guitar. The reason is, those units have a relatively low action or a basic electric. Those help to get familiar with the simple aspects of the guitar before getting the tough one.
In the end, it’s all about personal preference. Whichever you find fun and enjoyable to play will be the best. The consistency and regular practice is the key to learning to play the guitar.
Which guitar should I start with?
The simple answer is that whichever motivates you the most. Neither is perfect or imperfect. Deciding whether to start with an acoustic or electric guitar comes down to answering one question. Which motivates you?
If you get excited, listening to rock music, you need to start with an electric guitar. You may not find it exciting to learn an acoustic guitar. Besides, the electric guitar is easy to play because of its lower action, lighter strings, and thinner necks.
However, if you dreamt of strumming an acoustic guitar, you may not find an electric guitar interesting. As a beginner, an acoustic guitar will save all the extra expenses of the amplifier, cable, etc. It is easy to carry around.
Starter Guitar Recommendations
Beginner guitars have to be less expensive. You don’t know whether you’ll proceed with the guitar or not. There is a lot of biggest name around in music. We have also added a few of them in our list.
We found the ZENY 39″ Full-Size Electric Guitar as the best among them. It delivers a bright and crisp sound into its compact package. In addition, it includes everything needed for aspiring musicians.
There are endless options on the subject of the best starter electric guitar. Many beginners get intimidated while choosing their first guitar. But, we tried to cover the most in this article.
What is suitable for you depends on your personal music preference and playing style. So, first, determines your music priorities. You should get one that you can use for different music genres.
So, best of luck for your first guitar shopping! Don’t give up; otherwise, you’ll hate the guitar. Stick with what you find comfortable as it is going to reward you.