Getting started with playing guitar can be very daunting at first. It seems like you need at lot of items just to get the basics. Today we break all of that down to make an easy, concise list of essential electric guitar gear that everyone should own.
Essential Electric Guitar Gear Everyone Should Own: A Beginner’s Guide..
Everyone starts somewhere when it comes to playing guitar. Electric guitar can be particularly confusing to a beginner, because it seems like a lot to buy, just to get up and running. But today we show you how it’s not actually complicated at all.
You need a few things, and certainly do not want to leave out anything that is essential. So today, we break it all down for you.
Essential Guitar Gear: #1 The Guitar
We have a buying guide for absolute beginners already. And we are going to pick a guitar from that list, that I think is perfect for getting starting with electric guitar.
The Yamaha Pacifica is the perfect way to get started! It is versatile, and can play any type of genre you want. Even professionals use the Yamaha Pacifica series. This is the king of budget guitars and the base model starts under $200.
But even the base model has some huge advantages. The most important to a beginner, is that it is easy to play. There is no fuss at all, and the neck is accommodating for any hand size.
You will often see the Yamaha Pacifica on the “best of” lists for beginners. That’s because it is a quality guitar, for an affordable price.
#2: The Amp
The Fender Mustang Series is a part of our best practice amp list. This is the perfect amp for anyone just starting out. It has all of the sounds you could possibly want, and this is a totally affordable amp.
You can even hook the Mustang up to your computer, and come up with your own custom settings if you want. But this isn’t necessary and it has all the sounds built-in that a beginner could want, right out of the box.
#3 Guitar Cable
My personal favorite is the Fender Professional Series Guitar cables. These are usually very affordable (under $20) and they last for a long time. They are well made and rugged.
Your guitar cable is definitely essential electric guitar gear. This connects you your amp to your guitar. I recommend at least a 10 foot long cable.
#4 Picks/ Plectrums
Picks are probably the easiest thing to forget about when it comes to essential electric guitar gear. They are often forgotten, or overlooked even when you are buying an “all in one” beginner pack.
Dunlop makes the widest variety of picks, and they made the list for The Best Picks For Metal that we posted last year.
What size would you use? Picks come in all sizes, and it comes down to what is comfortable for you to play with. The best option is to order a sample set from Dunlop.
#5 Extra Strings
Most guitars come with strings already on them. But having a few extra sets of strings would definitely be considered essential electric guitar gear. You never know when you might break a string, or the strings you get on your guitar may be old.
Almost all guitars come pre-strung with this set of strings. Ernie Ball .10-.46. They come in the bright, neon yellow package and you can find them literally everywhere for about $6 a set.
#6 A Good Tuner
I cannot recommend the clip on tuners enough. These simply clip on to the headstock of your guitar, and allow you to tune with pinpoint accuracy. Having a tuner is definitely essential electric guitar gear, and clip on tuners are by far the easiest.
We made a list of the different types of tuners last year, and that list remains updated today. You can pick any of the options. But the clip on tuners are very affordable (under $10) and they work great!
Essential Electric Guitar Gear: Optional Accessories
We have officially covered everything you need to get started playing electric guitar. There are a few things that you could also buy, that I wouldn’t consider essential electric guitar gear, but it is nice to have:
- Gig Bag/ Case For The Guitar
- Guitar Polish
- Guitar Stand
- Cleaning Cloth
These are nice to have, but certainly not essential. All you really need to get started is in our list.
Essential Electric Guitar Gear: Common Gear Myths DEBUNKED
If you do a little searching on internet forums and such, you’ll find all kinds of answers to what you need to get started playing electric guitar. Most notably, you’ll get a ton of myths. Like:
You Have To Start On Acoustic First: This is the most popular one that you will run into. disregard it completely. Buying what you need to get started playing electric guitar is like buying tools. You want to buy the right tools for the job? Then buy what you want and need, There is no real advantage to starting on acoustic.
Getting Started on Electric is Too Expensive: No way! It can be very inexpensive to get started and still have the essential electric guitar gear. In fact, electric guitar gear is the most affordable it has ever been.
Starting On Electric Guitar Is Confusing: Well, I suppose it can be. But that’s precisely why we are making a list! It doesn’t have to be confusing at all. people who perpetuate this myth are dead wrong. But finally, the big one…
Shouldn’t I Just Buy One of Those All In One Starter Packages? In my opinion? NO, These are usually bottom of the barrel when it comes to quality. They may come with all of the essential electric guitar gear, but bad gear can be frustrating. Then once you’re frustrated, you will quit playing.
Its better to buy what you need, and get quality gear from the start. I promise you, it will be worth it. And money-wise will not be much more than those all in one kits. All of the gear mentioned below, will actually be in the same price range as a “beginner kit”.
In fact, this list is guaranteed to rival any of those generic “beginner pack” options, both in quality and price!
Is it expensive to get started playing electric guitar?
Actually, no. I would budget between $300 and $500 to get everything that is essential electric guitar gear. This covers everything you need.
Are budget priced guitars bad quality?
Not like they were 20 years ago. Now you can get a great guitar for an affordable price, as standards have risen over the years.
Should I start playing acoustic guitar before I learn electric?
No, you can learn either, or both. If you want to start with electric, that is ok! Electric guitars are generally easier to play than acoustic guitars.