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Transitioning from Acoustic to Electric Guitar

Switching Your 6-Strings

There are several good reasons for playing both acoustic and electric guitar. It expands your musical horizons. It makes you more marketable. Most importantly, it can expand your enjoyment of guitar. If you have been playing acoustic guitar and are considering changing to (or simply adding) electric guitar, this article will go over some information and pointers to make the transition fun and easy.

Similarities

The basic ideas and structures of acoustic and electric guitars are the same. Most of both types are made of wood. In fact, the woods typically used for the bottoms of acoustic guitar bodies are the same as those used for the electric, such as maple and rosewood. Similarly, the same types of wood used for the necks and the fretboards tend to be the same. Most acoustics outside of the realm of classical and flamenco guitars use steel strings. The same goes for almost all electrics.

Both types of guitars work in much the same way. By plucking or strumming the guitar strings, the vibration becomes a sound which is produced and sent into the air. The method by which these sounds are produced is where things start to differ.

Differences

Acoustic guitars have a top made of a soft wood or veneer that enhances vibration. There is a soundhole that allows the sound to be reproduced through the resonance of the guitar body.

While there are certainly many semi-hollow electric guitars, most are solid and lack the resonance necessary to amplify the sound on their own. Consequently, electric guitars require electronics to reproduce and amplify the sound. These electronic components include pickups on the guitar, which are magnets that transmit the vibration to an electric cord and on to an amplifier. As the name implies, the amplifier amplifies the sound so it can be heard.

Electric guitars tend to be heavier than their acoustic counterparts, and that is before you add in the amp. On the other hand, the strings are not required to be as thick and are typically set lower to the fretboard than acoustics. It simply doesn’t take as much to produce sound on an electric as it does on an acoustic. Therefore, electric guitars tend to be easier to play.

Although one type of guitar does not have an inherent advantage over another, electrics tend to be more versatile for many genres of music because of the multitude of tones they can provide. Between the switches and knobs on your electric, to the countless available effects pedals and software, to the adjustments available on your amp, the possibilities for tone are almost infinite.

Adapting your playing style

Playing electric guitar for the first time is an adjustment. The weight of the guitar, the feel of the strings, and the “oomph” provided by an amp will be a different experience. You will most likely find that it doesn’t take as much effort to play, and you may want to lighten your touch on the strings and slow down your playing, but you will find it is worth it.

Phone Glenn Sutton at: 619-306-3664.

Services include:

  • Acoustic Guitar Lessons
  • Electric Guitar Lessons
  • Bass Guitar Instruction
  • Classical Guitar
  • Spanish Guitar
  • Learning to Write Music
  • Advanced Improv Techniques
  • Performance Techniques
  • TABS or sheet music

 

Styles:

  • Rock
  • Classic
  • Folk
  • Jazz
  • Improv
  • Blues
  • R&B/funk
  • Metal


Serving:

  • Rancho Bernardo
  • San Diego
  • Poway
  • Rancho Penasquitos
  • 4S Ranch