When all you have is a hammer,
Everything starts to look like a nail.
Construction Sites Everywhere
If you are looking to buy a guitar, think about what you want to do with it.
Being a person that is concerned with utility more than style, I look to buy a guitar for a reason other than looks. I would much rather hear a great player on a mediocre guitar than a mediocre player on a great guitar.
I pickup a guitar on average 20 times a day, and almost always it is an Ibanez Telecaster acoustic style. It is a hunk of junk that plays great and sounds terrible. I pick it up because I am not worried about anything but exploring a musical idea right then. I am not worried about scratching it, great tone, massive volume, impressing someone, or anything else. It serves my purpose. The main thing is it is cheap and plays well.
Personally, I buy most of my guitars off ebay for a lot less than they cost in the store. I have always been very happy with what I have bought, but remember to not buy things if someone has bad feedback, especially something as expensive as a guitar.
For Learning To Play Guitar
If you want to be someone that can really play instead of someone that just looks like they can, one of the most handy guitars you can own is a Fretlight
. These guitars plugin to your computer and light up notes on the fretboard so you can see exactly where to put your fingers.
They make one like my bang around, but they do not show up on ebay too often. I have been trying to buy one to teach with as I am working on some video to go with this site. (So, you might be bidding against me for one of those)
They do have a LOT of the electric versions
on ebay ranging from very basic to very nice. You get what you pay for.
My other main guitar is a Variax 700
. The Variax can sound like many of the most expensive guitars. It can sound like Les Pauls, Strats, or even Acoustics. This guitar is pretty awesome. I would like to have the even newer version. I use this guitar almost every time I record.
Too Nice For Me
I used to have a super nice Taylor guitar
, but was so worried about scratching it that I never played it. If you are looking for a great acoustic, I do not think you can go wrong with a Taylor. They are not cheap, but are some of the most consistent quality acoustics out there. The Variax sounded better on record than the taylor, so I sold it..