Adult’s Guitar Guide

When choosing a guitar for the adult student, the style of music the student wishes to learn will dictate which guitar type they will purchase:

Guitar types:

Classical: This is the guitar type used for students interested in learning classical and flamenco music. Students pluck strings using their fingers on the right hand.

Steel-string acoustic: This is the guitar type used for students interested in learning modern acoustic guitar music of many types: Rock, blues, jazz, alternative, etc. The student uses a pick to pluck strings with their right hand.

Electric: This is the guitar type used for students wanting to learn electrified modern music of all types: Rock, blues, jazz, alternative, etc. The student uses a pick to pluck strings with their right hand. Additional equipment like amplifiers and cables are required.

Different guitar sizes:

The issue of different guitar sizes will play a role in deciding what guitar type or brand the new adult player will purchase. Although adults can choose between any full size guitar of any type, there are important differences that must be taken into account when choosing to buy a new instrument.

Classical guitars are pretty consistent in terms of sizes among all brands, and classical guitars tend to be the smallest acoustic guitar. Classical guitars can fit pretty much any adult player, plus any acoustic music style will sound great on them, even modern styles like rock and jazz. Players who have issues with pain or discomfort will want to switch to a classical guitar.

Steel-string acoustic guitars can vary drastically in sizes among different brands. Some acoustics can be pretty slim, even smaller than a classical guitar, while others can be very big and wide. These differences in sizes will cause acoustic guitars to have very different sounds and feel very different to play on. Due to having all steel strings, some players may have issues with pain or discomfort. This guitar type is usually the hardest guitar type to learn on, and is better suited for players with strong fingers.

Electric guitars can also vary in sizes and especially shapes, but for the most part all electric guitars are pretty slim. These guitars also use all steel strings, so the issues of pain and discomfort found on steel-string acoustics will be present on electrics but on a smaller scale. Electric guitars have issues of feedback due to pickups, which can be difficult to control in the beginning of studies. This issue can be very frustrating to new players, so if the player does not want to deal with feedback, learning on an acoustic instrument may be better. Due to their slim size, electric guitars can be played by any adult player. In addition to the electric guitar, the player will have to buy an amplifier and guitar cable.

Recommended brands: Yamaha, Alhambra, Martin, Washburn, Epiphone, Fender, Squire, Gibson.