You are here

Xmas gift - any recommendations?

For all things relating to guitars, basses, amps, pedals & accessories.

Xmas gift - any recommendations?

Postby Gdalelann » Fri Dec 20, 2019 1:50 pm

i want to start some busking soon

christmas is coming up and i may [not definite] be able to get my wealthy aunt and uncle to buy me a kickass guitar for xmas. Can anyone recommend me an acoustic guitar that will sound good outdoors and is generally of high quality?

would an acoustic be better for busking or would an electric-acoustic be more appropriate?

and just in case my aunt and uncle decide NOT to go "all out" on buying me a new guitar, can you guys recommend anything for someone who;s on a budget?

ive only been playing guitar for about ... 20 something months and ive been practicing on a crappy classical guitar that i hate, so im not looking for a classical guitar.

ive been told to do some research before i ask my aunt and uncle for a guitar, so thats why im starting here for some advice. i know very little when it comes to what guitars are best for what purpose but i intend to check out a few music stores and get some help there.

so ... what can you guys recommend for me? as for price range? i really dont know ... 2-300? 4 maybe $500
Gdalelann
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:40 am

Re: Xmas gift - any recommendations?

Postby Sam Spoons » Fri Dec 20, 2019 2:14 pm

My choice for busking would probably be a Dreadnaught of some kind, they are loud so usable unamplified* and easily available. Your local dealer will have dozens at every price from $50 to $5000 (and more). I assume they'll let you choose rather than want to surprise you given that you know you might be getting it? So go and try a few in your price range (it's always better to try before you buy).

You will take a few weeks to get used to steel strings after playing a classical so ask the dealer to re-string your new guitar with extra light (10-50 thou) bronze strings and then go up one gauge each time you replace the strings until you have 12-54 or even 13-56 (it's worth getting the dealer to do each of the first few changes as the setup will need adjustment for the change of gauge).

* Some towns prohibit buskers using amplification, and if you can manage without the whole process becomes much easier and spontaneous. Soundhole pickups are easy to fit afterward and work well so buy the best guitar you can afford and worry about a pickup system and amplification later (birthday present maybe ;) )
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 11213
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........

Re: Xmas gift - any recommendations?

Postby blinddrew » Fri Dec 20, 2019 2:21 pm

My suggestion would be to look for a guitar with a built in pre-amp (acoustics need some extra electronics in there) as if you do decide to use amplification in the future you're already set.
You should also be able to get something with a solid top (as opposed to a ply top) in that price range, this is generally something worth looking for but don't get hung up on it - there are some great sounding ply-tops out there.
In your price range I'd definitely be looking at models from Crafter and Tanglewood. I picked up a really quite nice Epiphone with a solid top and built in pre-amp for about £130 a few years ago so it'd be worth looking at their range as well.
Your best bet is to find a decent store (or stores if you live somewhere big enough) and have a play on a few. Acoustic guitars can really depend on your playing style, possibly more so than most instruments.
User avatar
blinddrew
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9105
Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2015 12:00 am
Location: York
Ignore the post count, I have no idea what I'm doing...

Re: Xmas gift - any recommendations?

Postby Dynamic Mike » Fri Dec 20, 2019 4:00 pm

If you're not sure what you're after, for that kind of money Yamaha is generally the safest bet. They may not be the trendiest name around but I've always found their quality control second to none.
Dynamic Mike
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 3255
Joined: Sun Dec 31, 2006 1:00 am
Irrational beliefs justify unthinkable actions

Re: Xmas gift - any recommendations?

Postby blinddrew » Fri Dec 20, 2019 4:51 pm

That's a good shout, I've never played a bad Yamaha. :thumbup:
User avatar
blinddrew
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9105
Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2015 12:00 am
Location: York
Ignore the post count, I have no idea what I'm doing...

Re: Xmas gift - any recommendations?

Postby The Bunk » Fri Dec 20, 2019 6:15 pm

+1 for Yahamas. I've never had ANY duff gear from Yamaha; excellent value for money.
User avatar
The Bunk
Frequent Poster
Posts: 1180
Joined: Sat Dec 29, 2007 1:00 am
Location: SW London

Re: Xmas gift - any recommendations?

Postby ef37a » Fri Dec 20, 2019 6:27 pm

I really don't like the buskers who use amplification like a sledge!

When I walk through our (very depleted!) town centre I can often hear a busker 100mtrs away and I am clincally deaf! A year or so ago I saw a guy with a guitar, amp, mic on stand and a seriously loud battery amp. Could be counter productive? Peeps might think "if he can afford all this gear why should I give him money?"

If the rich relatives don't come through and you are really strapped check out charity and Cash Generator shops. Might be cheap and cheerful guitars but you won't be so bothered if it gets nicked or busted!

Dave.
ef37a
Jedi Poster
Posts: 11179
Joined: Mon May 29, 2006 12:00 am
Location: northampton uk

Re: Xmas gift - any recommendations?

Postby Sam Spoons » Fri Dec 20, 2019 6:34 pm

Me too, I've done very little 'proper' busking, usually I'm their by invitation at some sort of event but busking with an amp is definitely something that needs careful consideration.

As it happens our local authority have a voluntary 'buskers code' which says, amongst other tings, "no amplification", the local buskers don't seem to have read it though :headbang:
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 11213
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........

Re: Xmas gift - any recommendations?

Postby MOF » Fri Dec 20, 2019 6:57 pm

I wouldn’t spend a fortune on something that’s going to be out in all weathers.
MOF
Frequent Poster
Posts: 594
Joined: Thu Mar 06, 2003 1:00 am
Location: United Kingdom

Re: Xmas gift - any recommendations?

Postby Sam Spoons » Fri Dec 20, 2019 8:08 pm

How much busking are you planning to do @Gdalelann?
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 11213
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........