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What guitar?


 KR2
(@kr2)
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Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 2725
Topic starter  

I'm asking for advice on buying a guitar.
I just started (3 months ago)
I got the starter package "Stop Dreamin', Start Playin'" Squier Fender Strat
and I can tell that I'm going to want something with a little wider neck than a strat.

When I play a C chord my index finger has a tendency to cause the G string to buzz. Not much I can do about it. My finger is about as perpendicular as I can get it. I just feel I need a little more room between strings up there by the first fret.

I was looking at the Ibanez SZ520QM http://www.guitarcenter.com/Ibanez-SZ520QM-Quilted-Maple-Electric-Guitar-516795-i1371943.gc
and now looking at the PRS link http://www.musiciansfriend.com/navigation/paul-reed-smith-prs-guitars-solid-body-electric-guitars?N=100001+306241+202167 , I find several models I like too.
I want the tuners on both sides. Don't want to spend more than $600

My style of music that I want to pursue is mostly 70's Rock but John Denver, James Taylor, Neil Diamond would also be at the top of my list. Gordon Lightfoot, Willie Nelson . . . . . So I guess 70's to 80's era music.

Definitely not heavy metal so I don't think I need the crunch and overdrive and whatnot that goes with heavy metal.
Don't like jazz. (In fact I find it irritating)

What kind of guitar would you suggest?

It's the rock that gives the stream its music . . . and the stream that gives the rock its roll.


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 Nuno
(@nuno)
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Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 3998
 

Hi Ken!

IMHO the "C chord" affair is not a problem of the guitar. I came to electrics and steel string acoustics from the big Spanish nylon string acoustic. I was not able to put an A chord... the first week. However, it is a great point to change the guitar!

PRS are great guitars. I checked out some models. Great playability and good sound. I played the cheaper models and they are very nice. It could be good for your musical tastes. I never played an Ibanez but I don't know if it could adjust to your musical styles. I think so because the guitar just is a part. Sometimes the guitar is just a motivation issue.

As I said recently, go to the store and check both... and all the other guitars in the store as well... if the salesman allows to you, of course! ;)

When you are checking each guitar, try to think on its sound, how you feel playing it, if it is comfortable to your hands, arms and body. Feel the neck. Feel the vibrations in your arm and your body. The unplugged sound... Think also on your three-months-old Strat, you already has a "model" for comparing to.

Take your time, it is always funny to buy a new guitar!

Good luck!


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 Bish
(@bish)
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Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 3765
 

Ken, I think you know my opinion on guitars.

If I was going to buy another PRS it would be this one...Feature for dollar, this will be your main axe if you don't mind the color or the bats. :| I find the complete package, perfect for that price range.

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/PRS-Guitars-SE-Paul-Allender-Electric-Guitar?sku=514471

If you want a non trem model this is a very good buy.

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/PRS-Guitars-SE-Soapbar-Electric-Guitar?sku=519372

I have not played a PRS I didn't like. I don't know of anyone that I talk to face to face that dislikes them either. Most just don't want to shell out 2-3 grand for one. And now you don't have to.

However, if you can perceive the value in the higher dollar guitars and take one home, you might was well sell off the others. You probably won't play them much. :D

Bish

"I play live as playing dead is harder than it sounds!"


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(@rparker)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5492
 

Hi Ken,

I picked up a used PRS SE at Sam Ash about 4 or 5 months ago. I don't remember any specifics, but I do remember it being a positive experience. Seemed to play easily and sound very nice.

If you've seen any of my threads about my EPI LP Custom, you'll know that I'm VERY pleased with it. In Bish's new guitar thread in the guitar players discussions section, he illustrates what differences he found between the EPI and the Gibson LP he just got. I can't disagree with any of it. I do like mine a lot though. Great clean sound and can do medium-hard rock with clarity. I've got a couple of other toys for the harder stuff.

Ibanez's seem to have a great neck for beginners. I still have my el cheapo GAX-70. I instantly went from not being able to clear strings on simple chords to having no problems. I changed the pickups in it to some more aggressive GFSs later on though. The stock ones had a good clean sound, but horid on anything harder.

Well, good luck with your search.

Roy
"I wonder if a composer ever intentionally composed a piece that was physically impossible to play and stuck it away to be found years later after his death, knowing it would forever drive perfectionist musicians crazy." - George Carlin


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 KR2
(@kr2)
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Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 2725
Topic starter  

Just a note to let anyone interested know that the guitar I chose was the Ibanez GAX70.
Guitaring is a lot more fun than with my Squier Fender strat.
The Ibanez is way easier to play. Very forgiving.
For example, to avoid string buzz on the strat my fingers had to be truly perpendicular to the fretboard.
Any slight angling would cause it to rest on another string.
With the strat, the string had to be fretted close to the fret or sometimes buzz.
Normally, this would not be a problem but certain chords like the pinky on Asus is impossible for me to extend that far or the pinky on an open C chord or all the strings in an open A chord.
But, with the Ibanez those chords don't seem to be a problem. With the Asus I can drop the pinky right below the 2nd fret and it plays as if it was right above the 3rd fret. Also, the wider space between the strings is exactly what I wanted.
The only problem I have with it is it is top heavy. Meaning if I let go of the neck to reposition my hand for another chord I've got to catch the neck as it takes a dive. I think if they extended the part of the guitar where the strap is attached it would compensate for that. Next time I'll know to bring my strap.
Also, the strings are raised a lot higher from the guitar face. With the strat the strings were so close that I was hitting the face of the guitar with the pick on the high e string. No big deal. I never even noticed the pick was hitting. But while playing with my headphones, my wife wanted to know if I was supposed to be making a clicking noise.
Having the strings higher also makes it easier for the Travis picking I am trying to learn (for Dust in the Wind)

I think if GuitarCenter had the Ibanez SZ320 or SZ520, I would have gotten that, but I was limited to what they had.
And those (and the rest of my choices like Schecter or PRS) are easily 2 or 3 times more expensive. For $199, I think I got what I was looking for.

Thank you, Ibanez.

Ken (4 month newbie)

It's the rock that gives the stream its music . . . and the stream that gives the rock its roll.


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 Nuno
(@nuno)
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Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 3998
 

Congrats Ken! It seems you found your guitar. Ibanez is a great brand and I don't know anybody don't love his/her Ibanez.

You know the rules: send us the pictures (or video) ASAP! :D


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