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Best Beginner Electric Guitars

With so many options and different shapes, sizes and brands it can seem like a minefield when choosing your first guitar, but have no fear, I have compiled a list of the very best entry level guitars to facilitate your passion for playing. There are a few things to consider when purchasing a new guitar, the first is what size you need so here are the recommended sizes:

5 - 8 years old (up to 4'5"/135cm): 1/2 Size (classical guitar recommended)

8 - 11 years old (up to 4'11"/150cm: 3/4 Size

11+ years (from and above 4'11"/150cm): Full Size

The next thing to consider is your budget. Expect to pay around £100-£200 for a decent quality guitar by a reputable brand. Some of the benefits of selecting a well known brand are:

1. It will be of good quality so you will have less problems and less trips back to the guitar store.

2. It will sound much more inspiring, nothing kills the passion than a bad sounding guitar.

3. Best case scenario is that you will be able to sell it for a good price when you upgrade.

4. Worst case scenario is that you will be able to sell it for a good price if you give up.

I've considered these things for you and created a list based on my own personal experience and the experiences of many others a like. Which brings me to the last consideration, which one do you like? Whichever one you choose, you can't go wrong.

Remember that you will need to buy an amplifier to play electric guitar. Here is a list of the best beginner guitar amps.

1. Squier Stratocaster

Price: £110~

Sizes: Full Size and 3/4 size

Features: Based on one of the most versatile electric guitar ever made - the Fender Stratocaster, used by some of the greatest guitar players to walk this earth such as Jimi Hendrix, Mark Knopfler, Dave Gilmour, Stevie Ray Vaughan, John Mayer and many more. Features 21-fret maple or rosewood fingerboard, three single-coil Stratocaster pickups with five-way switching and a vintage-style synchronised tremolo bridge. It's the perfect first electric guitar.

What the manufacturers say: "The best value available today in electric guitar design, Squier Affinity Series guitars deliver solid sound with slick style. The Affinity Series Stratocaster combines the classic features that made the Stratocaster a rock 'n' roll favorite: sonic flexibility, authentic Fender sound, vintage style and eye-catching finishes." - Fender Guitars

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2. Epiphone Les Paul SL

Price: £100~

Sizes: Full Size only

Features: Since the beginning of rock ‘n’ roll, the Les Paul has been considered one of the ultimate electric guitars and the Les Paul SL continues that long tradition of innovation with a lightweight Poplar body that’s slimmer than a vintage Les Paul making it easy to hold for new players.  The bolt-on Mahogany neck has a traditional 24.75” scale with an easy-to-play SlimTaper-D profile. Even the headstock has the look of a classic Les Paul with Epiphone’s trademark “Clipped Ear” design, the same “Bell-Shaped” truss rod cover seen vintage models, and 60s era Epiphone logo and a "2017" Edition logo on the back of the headstock.

Powered by Epiphone single coil Ceramic pickups with a 650SCR™ in the neck position and a slightly overwound 700SCT™ in the bridge position for solos. Mr. Les Paul, the inspiration for the Les Paul guitar, was especially fond of single coil pickups for their tonal versatility when playing rhythm and solos. Ceramic pickups are designed to provide a tight low-end response with both a smooth mid-range and a slightly more pronounced top end tone. That’s why ceramic magnets have been a favorite of metal and hard rock guitarists for decades. Controls include a master volume and tone with traditional Black ABS “Top Hat” knobs.

Comes with Epiphone’s world famous Limited Lifetime Guarantee and Gibson 365/24/7 Customer Service.

What the manufacturers say: Epiphone presents the 2017 Les Paul SL™, the most affordable 2-pickup Les Paul ever made with a slim lightweight Poplar body with powerful Epiphone Ceramic pickups. Available in six exclusive colors—Ebony, Heritage Cherry Sunburst, Pacific Blue, Sunset Yellow, Turquoise, and Vintage Sunburst.

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3. Epiphone Les Paul Special II

Price: £120~

Sizes: Full Size only

Features: Legendary design, great tone and super affordable. The Les Paul II features an Okoume trademarked Les Paul body plus a bolt-on Okoume neck with a "1960's" SlimTaper™ profile, and "Dot" inlays. The Special II is voiced by a pair of hot open-coil Epiphone 700T and 650R humbucker pickups for that massive unmistakable Les Paul tone. Like all of Epiphone's electric guitars, the Special II comes standard-equipped with 500K potentiometers for the Master Volume and Master Tone controls, plus Epiphone's heavy-duty 3-way pickup selector toggle switch and exclusive non-rotating heavy-duty output jack.

What the manufacturers say: "Epiphone's number one selling model LP Special II is a great way for beginners to get started on guitar while getting the feel and tone of a Les Paul. Seasoned pros also love the Special II because it's a great-sounding workhorse of a guitar that allows them to leave their more expensive axes at home. The Epiphone LP Special II comes with our famous Epiphone Lifetime Limited Warranty featuring Gibson's 24/7/365 Customer Service that warrants your Les Paul Special II against defects in materials or workmanship. Grab one today at your favourite Authorised Epiphone Dealer."

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4. Yamaha Pacifica

Price: £140~


Full Size


Features: Yamaha have been making guitars for a long time and the Pacifica reflects the craftsmanship. Affordable with versatile tones and a selection of colours. It is very easy to play and is a reliable and durable guitar. Sporting two single coil pickups for chimey toes and a hum bucker pickup in the bridge for a thicker higher output tone, perfect for rock, metal, pop and everything in-between.

What the manufacturers say: "Even with orthodox Bolt-on structure, Pacifica series has been constructed to respond to various genres and play styles. Its PU configuration provides a wide range of sound character from bottomless heavy distortion to clear-cut clean sound.

This new entry-level model offers a comprehensive specification, with a quality of craftsmanship and tone that belies its budget price tag."

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5. Epiphone SG Special

Price: £140~

Sizes: Full Size only

Features: When the “SG” double cutaway electric guitar was first released, it was intended to take the place of the Les Paul,which was discontinued throughout most of the 60s. Lightweight yet powerful, the SG became a hard rock classic all its own and was embraced by a wide range of players including Eric Clapton, the Allman Brothers, Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath, and Pete Townshend of The Who. The new SG-Special VE™ has the same iconic design with a Poplar body with a Mahogany veneer and a black pickguard. The bolt-on Okoume neck has a 1960's SlimTaper™ D profile, a standard SG scale length of 24.75”, pearloid dot inlays, and 22 medium jumbo frets. It is available in Cherry, Ebony, Heritage Cherry Sunburst, Vintage Sunburst, and Walnut Vintage Worn finishes.

The SG-is powered by two Epiphone open-coil humbuckers with ceramic magnets. Ceramic pickups have a higher output than vintage Alnico magnet pickups and are designed to provide a tight low-end response with both a smooth mid-range and a slightly more pronounced top end tone. Ceramic magnets have been a favorite of metal and hard rock guitarists for decades. Controls include a Master Volume and Master Tone with traditional black “Speed” knobs and a 3-way pickup selector.

What the manufacturers say: "The new Epiphone SG-Special VE™ is a great way for new players to discover a rock classic at a price anyone can afford. Featuring Epiphone open-coil humbuckers with Ceramic Magnets and available in five beautiful Vintage Worn finishes including Cherry, Ebony, Heritage Cherry Sunburst, Vintage Sunburst, and Walnut."

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Hope you have found this helpful. Be sure to check out some essential accessories and free lessons. I wish you the best of luck on your musical journey.


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