How to determine guitar type for a beginner?

Discussion in 'Squier Stratocasters' started by drabina, Mar 14, 2019.

  1. drabina

    drabina Squier Talker

    Age:
    69
    17
    Mar 13, 2019
    NJ
    I know each guitar type has a distinctive sound and based on what type of music I want to play, I need to pick a suitable guitar type. I am looking at a Squire Stratocaster just because it the most popular guitar and most likely that's going to be my first purchase (I am a noob wanting to learn). But at the same time, I am wondering if Strat is going to play the way I would like. I have no experience with guitars so I don't know if Strat, Tele, Les Paul or something else would be suitable for me. Also, since I am just starting, I can't expect to play anything close to what my favorite musician is playing for the next couple of years at least if not a decade (given I make some steady progress in learning).

    So is Strat a good guitar to learn on? Would you recommend something else if the music I like is Dire Straits, Mark Knopfler (of course) and Fleetwood Mac? I am assuming that their music is what I would be trying to learn to play.
     
  2. BlueSquirrel

    BlueSquirrel Squier-Nut

    565
    Dec 21, 2018
    Europe
  3. drewcp

    drewcp Squier-Meister

    Age:
    34
    405
    Dec 14, 2018
    Saint Paul, MN
    Any guitar that is decent will be good to learn on. Some folks start on Strat or Tele, some on Les Paul, other's on Ibanez and on and on.

    The important things are going to be:
    Is it set up properly in regards to action (string height) and intonation. So that it's easy to play and the notes sound correct.
    Do you like it? So that it's something you'll want to pickup and play. For example, if Green reminds you of something painful, it won't matter how nice the guitar is, if you don't want to play it.

    Once you know how to play you can figure out what sounds/scale length/brand etc. that you like.

    I started on a Les Paul, because those were the "cool" guitar to me as a teen. Now I have a few strats, a couple teles and whole bunch of other guitars.
     
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  4. lespaul1968

    lespaul1968 Squier-Meister

    Age:
    50
    331
    Jan 26, 2019
    Indiana
    I would say most definitely strat would be a good place to start.
     
  5. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Squier-holic

    Sep 27, 2014
    Canada
    I think a Strat is great, because it has great body contours that make it very comfortable both on a strap or sitting down with it in your lap......and it has a lot of tone options with the 3 single coil pickups, and Dire Strats is all about Strats!! Any decent electric guitar with a good setup would be great to learn on - that's the key - getting it setup properly by someone who knows what they're doing. It is a make or break difference in how quick you will learn and whether or not you give up thinking it's too hard to play because the strings are too high.....
     
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  6. waynes world

    waynes world Squier-Meister

    Age:
    50
    179
    Jan 27, 2019
    Saskatoon
    Strats are great, I’ve recently been rebitten by the guitar bug and picked up a Squier Deluxe Strat, I love it!
     
  7. brians

    brians Squier-Meister

    Age:
    49
    472
    Oct 1, 2017
    South Africa
    Hi and welcome, given the fact that you are asking on this forum, and looking at your favourite guitar players, think you've already made your own mind up. Nothing like a Strat and it's a perfect guitar to learn on and stay with. No better choice in my opinion, BUT you should get to a store , to just play and feel a few different guitars, and then , just buy the Strat

    Sent from my HUAWEI VNS-L22 using Tapatalk
     
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  8. BlueSquirrel

    BlueSquirrel Squier-Nut

    565
    Dec 21, 2018
    Europe
    I don't know about Fleetwood Mac but as for Mark Knopfler / Dire Straits, a stratocaster would indeed be ideal imo. The Squier Classic Vibe 50s can do some great Mark Knopfler's tones. However, his songs are quite hard to play. You would probably have to start with simplified versions of them.
    You could also start on a acoustic guitar (a lot of people find it easier providing the strings are changed to "extra light " strings for comfort) and there are lots of tutorials available for beginners on acoustic.
    As Brians said, you should go to a shop to try out different guitars.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2019
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  9. SquierTap

    SquierTap Squier-holic

    Age:
    37
    Jul 14, 2018
    Nashville, Tn
    First off, welcome aboard! And welcome to guitar playing... It's really rewarding, fairly instant gratification (if ya learn fairly quick, lol), it'll keep ya outta trouble, and lastly and maybe most important; Chicks dig it... Lol... Just playin...

    I'd say a Stratocaster is a pretty good choice for a first... A seafoam green Epiphone Strat copy was my first "real" guitar, and I played everything from country to (mostly) Nirvana...

    Basically, the pickups in the guitar sound good for different things... Single coil pickups (like most Strats have) have a bright, crisp, sometimes twangy sound, and humbuckers (like on a Les Paul or most "shredder" type metal guitars) look like 2 single coils stacked together... Cause that's kinda what they are, lol... But they have a thicker, more full sound that works better for distortion and heavier music...

    Or you can get a Squier Strat with a humbucker in the bridge and single coils in the middle and neck positions (called a "HSS") and that should cover a LOT of tones and ground...

    Good luck, man... And again, welcome!
     
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  10. drabina

    drabina Squier Talker

    Age:
    69
    17
    Mar 13, 2019
    NJ
    Thanks guys for the replies. The problem is that even if I get to the store to look at a couple of guitar types, I can't test them because I can't play. :-( Whatever sound I can make is not going to help me out and may just annoy other customers and store staff. :)
     
  11. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Squier-holic

    Sep 27, 2014
    Canada
    Do you have anyone you know who DOES play that you could bring with you?
     
  12. snivlem

    snivlem Squier-holic

    Age:
    41
    Jan 25, 2018
    FL
    I would go with what feels best in your hands, and if you want to hear it, I'm sure every associate within 50 feet will run to play some licks for you. I would personally recommend a Standard Squier Strat or Tele as something affordable to start with that you can love forever.
     
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  13. Triple Jim

    Triple Jim Squier-holic

    Feb 16, 2018
    North Central NC
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  14. radiotech

    radiotech Dr. Squier

    Apr 23, 2014
    Chicago
    I’ve got nothing against Strat’s, but I don’t think it’s a first good Guitar, I’d suggest something that doesn’t have a Tremelo (actually it’s a vibrato). Now before everyone goes jumping on the “just get it professionally set up” wagon.... hear me out:
    The majority of people who try to learn guitar later in life give up within three months, that frustration of learning will only be more so if you have to deal with addition the tremolo (setup and tuning) on top of learning the guitar... save yourself some trouble and pass on the Trem-Leo.

    A Squier ‘51 has the Strat shape, with a nice telecaster neck, and controls that you don’t bust your knuckles on.... IMO it’s the perfect starter electric guitar.
     
  15. KG7IL

    KG7IL Squier Talker

    Age:
    66
    14
    May 1, 2018
    Eatonville, WA edge of cowtown
    Squire VM or CV models are a good bang for the buck.
    They are basically the same design, layout, parts as their Fender big brothers.
    .
    Sure some parts are cast, cheaper, a little different... but the point is that a Squire setup identical to the Fender Stratocasters and there is plenty of information so you can learn over time. There are plenty of people and shops that can help you.

    Don't hesitate to spend the money for a quality setup even thought the guitar might only be $300...
    Playability is the most important thing and this is what a complete setup will create: a playable strat.
     
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  16. BlueSquirrel

    BlueSquirrel Squier-Nut

    565
    Dec 21, 2018
    Europe
    It's actually not a real problem! ;) Guitar shops are full of great players - salesmen included - who will be more than happy to demonstrate a few guitars for you.

    Ask them to help you tune the guitar the first time and to show you how to do a few simple chords. You could start with "E minor", it's a really easy one (you only need two fingers) and it sounds great!
     
  17. brians

    brians Squier-Meister

    Age:
    49
    472
    Oct 1, 2017
    South Africa
    Set up Set up Set up...best advice here, whatever guitar it is .....

    Sent from my HUAWEI VNS-L22 using Tapatalk
     
  18. Papa Joe

    Papa Joe Squier-Axpert

    Age:
    89
    Dec 12, 2009
    Swanton Ohio
    Something to consider is the ease of getting and keeping the guitar working properly..You will be more likely doing that with a Tele rather than a Strat..
    I like Strats as much as the next person but it takes experience to get and keep them properly set up..The vibrato is a big issue with them..You'd likely have to have it blocked to start with..Otherwise it's gonna be hard to keep it in tune..
    A tele on the other hand doesn't have that to deal with..Once it's set up it will most likely hold in tune..
    You're just starting and you don't need the frustration of fighting tuning issues..
    Then after you've gain some experience you can get the guitar that will allow you to play the music that you enjoy..
    I've bought a lot of guitars through the years that others had given up on..
    Buy a Tele..Simple basic guitars..
     
  19. BlueSquirrel

    BlueSquirrel Squier-Nut

    565
    Dec 21, 2018
    Europe
    Mark Knopfler doesn't use a pick when he plays, so make sure that the guitar you start on has "light" or "extra light gauge" (that is "tension") strings. ;) (if it's not the case, the music shop's staff can change them for you).

    As for the music, you could start with an easy tutorial such as this one (simplified version of "Walk of Life" by Justin Sandercoe) :
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2019
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  20. Triple Jim

    Triple Jim Squier-holic

    Feb 16, 2018
    North Central NC
    One finger if your fingers are like mine. :)
     
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