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Does new/better gear make you a better player???? It Helps!!

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(@fishrmann)
Trusted Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 33
Topic starter  

Several weeks ago I posted a topic titled "wants vs needs"........ I really thought my Ax at the time (a really crappy Squire Strat) sounded horrible and wanted a new one.... so bought this little beauty:

http://www.schecterguitars.com/spec.asp?id=3

Moral of this post - IF you LOVE your gear, you'll practice more, and yes, THAT goes a long way in making you better 8) I never liked the sound of my squier, but LOVE the Schecter and it has indeed led to more practice time, desire to get back into pro lessons, and after just a month of having it my playing has improved dramtically. It was worth every penny!!!

Does anyone else find that by buying some new toy or gadget that "sounds good" it really does lead you to practice more and ultimately a better player? If so, what WAS that item??? PLEASE SHARE!!!


   
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(@anonymous)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 8184
 

a crappy sounding guitar will give me a headache if i play it too much. a great guitar that is effortless to play removes that wall between head and sound.

that inlay looks beautiful. i would have gotten it in blue, but it looks nice.


   
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(@artlutherie)
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Joined: 20 years ago
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The guitar you get should always make you want to play. Having said that my electric is a Squier Strat and yes I do play it everyday(unless I'm feeling mody and I need to alter it in some way) 8)

Chuck Norris invented Kentucky Fried Chicken's famous secret recipe, with eleven herbs and spices. But nobody ever mentions the twelfth ingredient: Fear!
ChuckNorrisFactsdotCom


   
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(@voodoo_merman)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 368
 

Hmmm...Cant agree. If you love making music, you'll practice more. If you love your gear, you'll just look at it more and be content with the fact that you have a guitar that you love. Of coures, sounding better is always nice. But, just b/c you sound better doesnt mean that youre better player.

Concerning the Squire - all you needed was a new set of pups. I know at least two guitarists who simply replaced the stock pups on the Squire with better ones and you'd be amazed to hear how them dang things came to life. So, you really didnt need a completely new guitar.

Its easy to put the blame on everything else but ourselves. "My guitar sounds crappy. I'll be a better player if I buy a new one" Or, "I suck at playing the pentatonic scale. I need to learn more scales. That will make me a better player". But, when it comes down to it, only one thing that will make you a better player. Dedication. No matter what you play.

At this time I would like to tell you that NO MATTER WHAT...IT IS WITH GOD. HE IS GRACIOUS AND MERCIFUL. HIS WAY IS IN LOVE, THROUGH WHICH WE ALL ARE. IT IS TRULY -- A LOVE SUPREME --. John Coltrane


   
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(@greybeard)
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Joined: 21 years ago
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Sorry, voodoo, I've got to disagree with your disagreement. Let's go into the world of woodwork. No matter how much you like working in wood, poor quality tools will make life difficult and frustrating for you - just imagine trying to work an old piece of teak with a cheap chisel. Get yourself a good chisel and the work becomes easier, you have more pleasure in the work and more pride in the finished result.

It's the same in guitar playing (or any instrument, for that matter), if you have an instrument that is difficult to play and you find frustrating, you will never achieve the results that you would with a guitar that is a pleasure to play. "Pleasure to play" does not, necessarily, wholly equate to price, looks or name on the headstock, although, just like food, appearance does play a part.

We are a creature with 5 senses. A crappy guitar pleases none of them. A good guitar will please 2 of them - sound and feel. What is wrong with pleasing 3 - sound, feel and sight?

I started with nothing - and I've still got most of it left.
Did you know that the word "gullible" is not in any dictionary?
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(@voodoo_merman)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 368
 

But at the end of the day is it the appreciation of your quality tools that leads you to work more wood? Or is it a love for woodworking? A tool is just what it is. A tool. Yes, having better equipment is great. But, a great piece of equipment wont lead you to practice more (or at least it doesnt lead me to) or make you a better player.

Oh sure, nothing sends you into a nice little spasmodic playing binge like getting a new axe. But, that wears off quick. And, it will always be the player with the best skills not the best gear that is, well, the best.

If the guitar is "difficult to play" or "frustrating" to use, then thats a completely different ball-game. In that case, something NEEDS to be done about it. But, with fishrman, that was not the case from what I read. He simply did not like the sound.

Nobody wants crappy equipment. Hell, I hate using my cheapo strat copy. But, I refuse to believe that if that strat copy was a powerhouse, deluxe, mega 2000, I would be a better player by now. Would I play more? I already play as much as possible, im just glad to have a guitar. Would it make me sound better? Yes. Would it make me a better guitarist? No.

At this time I would like to tell you that NO MATTER WHAT...IT IS WITH GOD. HE IS GRACIOUS AND MERCIFUL. HIS WAY IS IN LOVE, THROUGH WHICH WE ALL ARE. IT IS TRULY -- A LOVE SUPREME --. John Coltrane


   
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(@pearlthekat)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 1468
 

Having great gear will make you a better player in the long run. Ive never been someone who believes in buying the cheapest It doesn't have to be the best either just something reasonable. A good player can make any guitar sound at least pretty good, but beginners like us need to have something good, that we like, that it easy to play in order to get somewhere.

My first guitars were a Seagull M6 acoustic and PRS Santana SE electric. I bought the Seagull because of its reputation and for getting a good value ($350 including tax for a nice dreadnaught with a solid spruce top). The electric is a PRS Santana SE which was an e-bay bargain ($400 including case, no shipping charge). I've now upgraded to a Martin 00016GTE. The smaller size makes it far easier to play and I believes that I've greatly improved my fingerpicking technique. It's easier to play but takes no s---. I can get a good sound out of the Seagull no matter how my technique is, but the Martin demands being picked correctly to sound it's best!

My latest purchase, yesterday, was another bargain. A Daisy Rock 12 string for $175 at Guitar Center. I couldn't wait to get home to play it!


   
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(@alangreen)
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Joined: 22 years ago
Posts: 5342
 

I'm with the motivation movement. New gear, chosen with the benefit of experience, always drives you to play more and experiment more. With experimentation comes greater understanding, and with that comes a better guitarist. That guitarist might still suck at playing 3-octave harmonic minor scales but knowing how to play them is more important than playing them well (except in the exam room)

Best,

A :-)

"Be good at what you can do" - Fingerbanger"
I have always felt that it is better to do what is beautiful than what is 'right'" - Eliot Fisk
Wedding music and guitar lessons in Essex. Listen at: http://www.rollmopmusic.co.uk


   
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(@rocker)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 1128
 

quality equipment will have an effect on your playing, most people will use junky equipment
for a short peoriod and say " i'll start practicing real hard when i get a better guitar"
and most of them never play again.

even god loves rock-n-roll


   
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(@greybeard)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 5840
 

But at the end of the day is it the appreciation of your quality tools that leads you to work more wood? Or is it a love for woodworking? A tool is just what it is. A tool. Yes, having better equipment is great. But, a great piece of equipment wont lead you to practice more (or at least it doesnt lead me to) or make you a better player.
It's both. The quality tool allows you to enjoy the woodworking, which makes you work better and appreciate it more. As Alan Green said, you become more motivated.
By having better tools, you become a better woodworker - you don't have to work so hard to achieve good results, so you are able to concentrate more on achieving better ones. The same goes for guitars (no, it won't make you a better woodworker, though).
Oh sure, nothing sends you into a nice little spasmodic playing binge like getting a new axe. But, that wears off quick.
That, in itself, will improve your skills and they won't go away, when the excitement wears off.
And, it will always be the player with the best skills not the best gear that is, well, the best.
Do you ever see them willingly use crap gear? They know the value of good gear.
If the guitar is "difficult to play" or "frustrating" to use, then thats a completely different ball-game. In that case, something NEEDS to be done about it. But, with fishrman, that was not the case from what I read. He simply did not like the sound.
"Sound" is a conglomeration of several factors, the pickups being just one of them. There are many other things that will bring an improvement, without intrusive surgery. Try an equaliser, try adjusting the tone stack, try different settings on the guitar, get a better cable, try a different pick and or picking style. Take the guitar to a guitar shop and try different amps.
Hell, I hate using my cheapo strat copy. But, I refuse to believe that if that strat copy was a powerhouse, deluxe, mega 2000, I would be a better player by now. Would I play more? I already play as much as possible, im just glad to have a guitar. Would it make me sound better? Yes. Would it make me a better guitarist? No.
You've just said it yourself "I hate playing my cheapo strat copy" - you are lacking positive motivation, which is the direct result of the quality of your instrument.

I started with nothing - and I've still got most of it left.
Did you know that the word "gullible" is not in any dictionary?
Greybeard's Pages
My Articles & Reviews on GN


   
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 geoo
(@geoo)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 2801
 

I think its somewhat psycological, but yes I think it does make you want to practice more.

At the end of the day you can make beautiful music on just about anything if you are good enough. Someone posted a video of a gentleman playing a TOY guitar quite a few months back. It was amazing. But when you get that new guitar, you obviously will want to mess around with it more. Will that fascination last past the newness of the guitar? Dunno

Geoo

“The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which to burn” - David Russell (Scottish classical Guitarist. b.1942)


   
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(@pearlthekat)
Noble Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 1468
 

guess i'll repeat what i've already said. A good guitar player can make anything sound good but beginners like us need good equipment to help us along!!


   
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 Taso
(@taso)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 2811
 

That's true that a good guitar player can play just as well on a bad guitar as a good guitar, but the tone will still be obviously not as good, so it won't sound as good.

fishrman, that is a BEAUTIFUL guitar. Nice finish, those inlays are HOT. I'm tempted to go down to GC and give one a shot (I don't have 800 bucks though, and I don't really need a new guitar) Did your finish look as nice as the ones on the site?

http://taso.dmusic.com/music/


   
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(@noteboat)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 4921
 

My view: good gear will not make you a better player. However, bad gear can limit you.

I think there's a difference.

If your gear is good enough so it doesn't hinder your current technique, better gear will give you no improvement. A rank beginner will sound just as good on a $300 guitar as he/she will on a $3,000 guitar - because their technique isn't up to bringing out the better tone of a really fine instrument.

But if your technique is good enough to justify a better instrument, the instrument will make you sound better.

Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL


   
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(@fishrmann)
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Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 33
Topic starter  

Taso, the finish actually looks better first-hand!!!!! $699 at GC. Could not be happier with what I got for the money.

Also, would like to add I'm not knocking Squires in anyway, mine was a lemon, plain and simple. Yes, I probably could have dropped even more $'s into it and gotten it sounding a little better. But after trying out some other guitars and hearing the tone of my Schecter, it was a no brainer. Now the Squire did indeed well serve it's intended purpose - a first, inexpensive guitar that got me through my first 14 mos of playing. After a year when it was obvious this was not a hobby I'd be giving up anytime soon, upgrading seemed to be a viable option.

The whole point of this thread wasnt so much to discuss gear itself, but to just make a statement that having a guitar you just love and cannot put down will lead to more practice practice practice..... That's what it's all about, right? Not which guitars are better than others, but finding the one that's right for YOU and helps to motivate a person to WANT TO PRACTICE.

On that note, was just curious to find out WHAT folks here have found that has led them to WANT TO PRACTICE more....... was it learning a new lick, a training aid, new equipment, any combination?


   
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