If you want to learn how to play the guitar, one issue you’ll come across early on is deciding whether or not to start with acoustic, or electric. Learn about the differences between them so you can make the right decision. We already know the benefits of playing guitar for children, and you can check out what Men’s Health says here, too!  So, electrified or acoustic?

  1. Acoustic guitars can be played anywhere

If you want maximum flexibility in terms of where you’ll be able to play your instrument, an acoustic guitar is the clear winner. Because it doesn’t require anything other than you to make music, it can be played absolutely anywhere. In contrast, electric guitars require a heavy amplifier plus a power source to make music so can only be played in areas where you’ll have an outlet available to plug into.

  1. They have very different sounds

The sound of an acoustic guitar is very different from that of an electric guitar – listen to recordings to get an idea of what kinds of sounds are possible with each. Although both can be used in any genre as long as you’re willing to be creative, traditionally, they were used for very different ones. For example, the electric guitar was the instrument of choice for rock and heavy metal musicians, whereas the acoustic guitar was typically used for folk and country music.

  1. Electric guitars are easier to play

The strings on an electric guitar aren’t as firm or heavy-feeling as those of an acoustic guitar – they feel softer and are easier on your fingers. Additionally, the neck of the guitar is usually shorter, making it easier to reach for holding chords. If you have sensitive fingers, or simply want to make the learning process as easy as possible, the electric could be a good choice.

  1. Electric guitars make it easy to practice in private

If you don’t want the whole world to hear you play, or others in your household need quiet when you need to practice, an electric guitar is the way to go. It allows you to use headphones to hear yourself practice – it’s kind of like listening to music on an mp3 player that no-one around you can hear, except in this case you’re creating the music on your guitar.

  1. Acoustic guitars can be less expensive

While guitars of both types can be found in all price ranges, generally speaking, acoustic guitars start at a less expensive price point. Not only are electric guitars more costly, but you also have to take into account the need to purchase an amplifier to use with them. If you’re on a tight budget, start with an acoustic – you can always sell it and switch to an electric one later on when you have more cash.

Choose a guitar and get lessons that are right for you

In a perfect world, you’d choose a guitar based strictly on the type of music you want to play. This makes it easier for you to replicate the sounds you love as you’re learning, making it more likely that you’ll have the motivation to stick with it over the long haul.

If you adore classical, country, or folk music, you have the benefit of your ideal instrument being in the most affordable category. However, for those who aspire to play the sounds that only an electric guitar can make, but don’t have the budget to do so, an affordable acoustic is the default option. Don’t let this get you down though – the skills you learn on an acoustic will let you hit the ground running with an electric later on – your practice and hard work definitely won’t be wasted.

If nothing else, remember this: the most important thing is to start learning and practicing guitar as soon as you can. So choose a guitar based on your experience level, budget and what style of music you want to play. The bottom line? Just play!


If you’re in Burlington, ON and area and want to learn guitar from real musicians in a friendly environment, visit Capstone Music today!