For most of us, making any major purchase, such as a new refrigerator, or a new car, is a cacophony of options and confusion; do we want the silver one or the black one? How much can we afford to spend? Will it last over time? If nothing else, we at least know what we need these appliances to do: the microwave needs to make the food hot quickly, the car needs to get us from one place to the other without breaking down. When confronted with the purchase of a new guitar, even experienced guitarists can have trouble deciding what exactly they want and need. However, if you follow a few simple suggestions, you can make your guitar-buying experience a whole lot easier.
1. Determine your price range: you can spend anywhere from $99 to $20,000+ on a guitar, so make sure to work out your budget before you go into the store or start shopping online. Quality guitars are available at all different price ranges, so don't feel that you have to break the bank to get what you need.
2. Know what sound you want. This is probably the most important aspect of learning how to buy an electric guitar. Certain guitars are more well-rounded, able to go from blues, to jazz, to rock without skipping a beat. Others are more one-sided, specifically designed for a certain type of music. Listen to some of your favorite guitar sounds on CD or on the radio, then ask a music professional what type of guitar was used on the recording. Chances are that they'll be able to point you toward a guitar that will get you close to the sound you're hearing in your head. Also, if you know what style of music you'll primarily be playing, this can also make your selection process easier.
3. Get something that excites you. Bottom line, if the guitar doesn't light up in your hands, if it just doesn't feel "right" even if it's supposed to be the perfect guitar, then it's not the right one for you. Shop around, both in stores and online, until you find the one that's screaming "pick me, pick me!"