Slash, Ed Sheeran, Jimi Hendrix, John Mayer, Eric Clapton, and many more. We all know them, the guitarists. Whether they use it as their primary instrument or manage to use it as a musical element in countless number 1 hits, they manage to control the strings like no other.

In this post, we take a close look at the guitar and how you take the first steps into the world of fingerpicking and insane riffs. Because what should you really pay attention to when acquiring a guitar, and what's the difference between a Spanish guitar and a Les Paul? We cover it all right here!


📖 First, a bit of history

The guitar as we know it today was developed around the year 1850. Especially the Spanish guitar makers have had an influence on how the acoustic guitar looks today. They were the ones who started making the body larger and strengthening the guitar's interior, which allowed the guitar strings to be tightened harder without the body collapsing. Since then, of course, various measures have been developed to produce different sounds from the acoustic guitar, but the shape has not changed much since then.

Later, George Beauchamp found out that string vibrations could be captured via an electric panel, and the cornerstone for the electric guitar was laid. After World War II, the electric guitar, with a solid body as we know it today, was created and made popular by Gibson and Fender, who still produce high-quality electric guitars to this day.


🎼 Acoustic Guitar

The acoustic guitar. Here, most people's journey into playing the guitar begins, and it provides a very good starting point for learning to play the guitar. The acoustic guitar works by the strings sending vibrations down into the soundhole, after which the sound is amplified in the resonance chamber (the body).

There are both full acoustic guitars that rely solely on the resonance chamber to create sound. But if needed, there are also electric-acoustic guitars where you have the option to connect them to an amplifier, thus playing to a larger audience!


🫀The Anatomy of the Acoustic Guitar

Acoustic Guitar Anatomy

  1. Headstock
  2. Tuning Peg
  3. Saddle
  4. Frets
  5. Neck
  6. Fretboard
  7. Soundhole
  8. Back
  9. Sides
  10. Bridge
  11. Top


Classical/Spanish Guitar

A Spanish guitar is also what we call a classical guitar. It is this shape that the Spanish guitar makers developed back in the early days of the modern guitar.

The sound of the Spanish guitar is often what most people associate with an acoustic guitar. This is because a Spanish guitar is born with nylon strings, which produce a softer or rounder and more pleasant sound. Additionally, nylon strings are less harsh to press and strum, making them more gentle on untrained fingers.


Children and Beginner Guitars

The Spanish guitar is often the choice for beginners. The guitar's body has a good size that is easy to handle for most people, and nylon strings are less harsh on the fingers, so you won't get sore fingertips after a full day of practice!

Spanish guitars are also made as children's guitars. Children's guitars are smaller and easier to handle for smaller individuals but function just like a regular-sized guitar.



Another good place to start if you're new to string instruments is with a ukulele. The ukulele closely resembles a small Spanish guitar, and it's not far off. It's built in the same way with a hollow body, fretboard, and nylon strings, although there are only four strings on a ukulele compared to the guitar's six. However, the ukulele is tuned significantly differently, providing a completely different sound than a guitar!

Within the ukulele category, there are several different sizes, with the most common being:

Soprano ukulele is the smallest and the one most people are familiar with.

Concert ukulele is slightly larger than the soprano ukulele. This is especially beneficial for adults with larger fingers, as there is more space between the frets.

Baryton ukulele is the largest but least common type of ukulele. Its larger size provides a deeper, more guitar-like sound than the smaller models.


Western guitar

The western guitar is characterized by its larger body and more metallic sound. The western guitar is the preferred choice among singer/songwriters like Ed Sheeran or bands like Oasis. While the Spanish guitar is strung with nylon strings, the western guitar uses metal strings, which contribute to its fantastic sound.

The body and neck of the western guitar are usually larger and more challenging to handle, which means it may not often be the first choice among brand-new guitarists. However, there are also smaller versions of the western guitar available if you, as a beginner, have fallen in love with the western sound!


🎸Electric guitar

The electric guitar is perhaps the most widely used instrument in music over the past 50-60 years since it gained popularity shortly after World War II. Whether you're listening to rock, pop, or jazz, or if you're listening to The Beatles, Metallica, or even Sussie and Leo, the electric guitar is present.

Unlike an acoustic guitar, the electric guitar's body is solid, so it doesn't produce much sound when you pluck the strings without having it plugged into an amplifier.

Electric guitars work by capturing the vibrations of the strings with the pickup, which "picks up" the frequencies and sends an electric signal out through the jack socket and into an amplifier that can turn the vibrations into sound.


🫀Anatomy of the electric guitar

Elektrisk guitar anatomi

  1. Headstock
  2. Tuning peg
  3. Nut
  4. Frets
  5. Neck
  6. Fretboard
  7. Pickup
  8. Pickguard
  9. Bridge
  10. Tone/volume knobs
  11. Body

There are countless different designs of electric guitars, but here we take a closer look at the most popular ones:



The Telecaster has been in production since 1951 and is one of the most versatile guitars available. It's considered one of the oldest guitar models, surpassed only by the Fender Esquire, which hit the market two years earlier but didn't gain the same popularity among guitarists worldwide.

The Telecaster is used by guitarists in all genres, from Jimmy Page in Led Zeppelin to James "Jim" Root in Slipknot. It's also known as a chameleon among electric guitars because it can be used to mimic virtually any electric guitar sound.

The Telecaster is a good choice if you're unsure about which genre to explore or just want to play a bit of everything!

Famous guitarists who use the Telecaster:

  • Keith Richards (The Rolling Stones)
  • Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin)
  • George Harrison (The Beatles)
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Jonny Greenwood (Radiohead)
  • James "Jim" Root (Slipknot)



Like the Telecaster, the Stratocaster was invented by Fender. Compared to the Telecaster, the Stratocaster has a brighter tone and is more "precise" in its notes. The Stratocaster is especially used in rock, pop, funk, and similar genres, perhaps not as hard as was the case with the Telecaster!

Names like Jimi Hendrix and Pete Townshend (The Who) are known for using the Stratocaster for most of their work! Additionally, the Stratocaster's rounded corners on the guitar headstock helped provide a whole new level of comfort, making it quickly one of the preferred guitars on the market.

Famous guitarists who use the Stratocaster:

  • Jimi Hendrix
  • John Mayer
  • Eric Clapton
  • Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits)
  • The Edge (U2)
  • John Frusciante (Red Hot Chili Peppers)

Fun fact: Apple's guitar emoji (🎸) is modeled after a Stratocaster with a vibrato arm!


Les Paul

The Gibson Les Paul is the one of the three models with the most distinct sound. Les Paul guitars are known for their darker tone, which is due to their use of a different type of pickup than the other two, which we'll get into later. These characteristics make the Les Paul extremely suitable for heavier genres like rock and heavy metal. So if you want to sound like Slash from Guns 'n' Roses, then a Les Paul is what you should go for.

Famous guitarists who use the Les Paul:

  • Slash (Guns 'n' Roses)
  • Billy Gibbons (ZZ Top)
  • Randy Rhoads (Quiet Riot & Ozzy Osbourne)
  • Zakk Wylde (Ozzy Osbourne)
  • Ace Frehley (KISS)
  • Gary Moore

Common to all the above models is that they are customizable. The guitar's sound can be drastically influenced by changing strings, pickups, and of course connecting different effect pedals. The most important thing is to find the guitar that feels comfortable in your hands and has the feeling and soul you are looking for!



To even be able to use your electric guitar, you need an amplifier. As mentioned before, an electric guitar sounds practically like nothing if it's not plugged into an amplifier, and playing guitar is most fun when you can hear what you're playing!

There are many different guitar amplifiers, some are made for acoustic guitars and others are made for electric ones. Additionally, they have different features. Some are very simple and are basically just a speaker that amplifies the sound you feed into it. Others, however, are filled with various effects and functions, typically found in an effects pedal. What you choose depends largely on what you need the amplifier for and whether you need more or fewer features.

Combo amplifier: A combo amplifier is an all-in-one amplifier that includes both an amplifier and a speaker. This means that as soon as you've plugged in a cable from your guitar to the combo amplifier, you're ready to play. The combo amplifier is by far the most popular amplifier, as it's easy to carry around and easy to set up. The combo amplifier is perfect for everything from the practice room to the bedroom, on stage, and actually everywhere imaginable!

Top amplifier: A guitar top amplifier is an amplifier, and only an amplifier. In itself, the top amplifier produces no sound. But when you take the signal from the top amplifier and send it into a guitar cabinet, magic happens! The advantage of choosing to go with a setup with a top amplifier together with a cabinet, rather than a combo amplifier, is the possibility of replacing the amplifier or guitar cabinets if, for example, you want a different sound from your amplifier setup.

Often, a top amplifier is also more powerful than the one you will find in a combo amplifier. The more powerful amplifiers and larger cabinets can be especially beneficial if you need it in terms of being able to "keep up" with a loud drum set in the practice room or if you want to deliver a proper amount of gain in the studio!

Whether you prefer combo or top amplifier setups is entirely up to personal preference as both can make the angels sing if used correctly!

Amplug: If you live in an apartment or simply do not have the opportunity to blast your amplifier at full volume, there is also a solution for that. An "amplug" is a small mini amplifier that you plug directly into your guitar, after which you can connect your headphones. This is really smart if, as mentioned, you cannot play loud, are on the go, or simply do not want to buy a guitar amplifier right now. Amplugs come in different models including metal, classic rock, and blues, depending on the sound you desire!



I promised earlier that we would take a look at pickups. As mentioned, the pickup is the part of an electric guitar that picks up the vibrations from the strings.

There are several types of pickups that work in their own way and have their own sound. A humbucker pickup, which is found on, for example, a Les Paul, has a "warm" full sound and is very well suited for genres with more distortion, such as metal.

On Telecasters and Stratocasters, single-coil pickups are used. These often have a slightly brighter (more treble) sound than the humbucker but at the same time have a very clean sound. That's precisely why these models are well suited for more classic rock, funk, pop, and similar genres. 


💰 Cheap or expensive guitar?

It is very individual what guitarists choose to play on. The same goes for the price level of their guitars. Because the truth is, even an expensive guitar can sound terrible in the hands of an inexperienced guitarist, and on the other hand, a cheap "beginner guitar" can sound fantastic if the person playing it knows how to play.

Naturally, there are differences in build quality, sound, etc. between a very expensive and a very cheap guitar, but don't let this determine your purchase. The most important thing is to find a guitar that suits your needs and fits your budget. There's not much fun in just being able to afford a guitar but nothing else, like an amplifier or similar.

🎉 Guitar Accessories

When you're either about to buy or maybe have just bought your new best friend, there are extremely many additional things that can be good to buy along with it, now that the credit card is already out, or add to the wishlist!


Guitar Case

It goes without saying that if you have a guitar, you also want to continue having it. Therefore, it's important to have a good guitar case. The guitar case helps protect your guitar during transport, but also keeps all your extra gear organized and in one place.



Guitar strings are perhaps the most important part of the entire guitar; without them, there's no sound. Therefore, it's also unfortunate if one or more of them break, and you can't continue playing because the tones are missing. That's why it's a good idea to already get some extra strings when buying your guitar. Remember, there's a difference between classical guitar strings, western guitar strings, and electric guitar strings.

Strengene er, as previously described, made of different materials, and therefore they behave differently. Nylon strings, typically found on a Spanish guitar, will initially stretch more than steel strings. This also means that you will often need to tune nylon strings, especially when you have just put on new ones!

If you are more experienced in the guitar world, you can also experiment with different types of strings for your guitar to get exactly the sound you want! Many people will start experimenting with the thickness of the strings: Thinner strings will usually be easier to play and bend, but this comes at the expense of less volume and resonance. The opposite applies to thicker strings. Thicker strings deliver more volume and resonance but are harder to play.



A pick is a small triangular piece of plastic with rounded corners. The pick is used to pluck the guitar strings if you're not using your fingers. Using a pick can contribute to a very specific sound, which can be difficult or even impossible to replicate with fingers.

Picks come in different thicknesses and materials. Different thickness picks produce different sounds, so it can be a good idea to have some different thicknesses on hand. Generally, on an acoustic guitar, you will use a thinner pick than on an electric guitar. A standard-sized pick will often range between 0.73 and 0.88mm.



As wonderful as a guitar can sound, it can sound equally terrible if it's not tuned! Some guitarists can tune their guitar perfectly just by listening, but for us mortals, a little help can be nice! Therefore, a guitar tuner is an indispensable piece of gear in any guitar case!

Clip-on tuner: A clip-on tuner is a small clamp with a display that you attach to the guitar's headstock. From its position on the guitar's headstock, it picks up the vibrations of the guitar when you pluck the strings and can thus tell you which pitch the string is tuned to. Clip-on tuners are super easy to use, very precise, and take up virtually no space.

Chromatic tuner: A chromatic tuner works by connecting it to the guitar via a jack plug, after which it can determine the pitches based on the signal from the guitar. The chromatic tuner is a good choice for electric guitars, where it can easily be integrated into a pedalboard, ensuring that your guitar is always perfectly tuned!


Guitar Stand

Once you've purchased a new beautiful guitar, it shouldn't just lie in a corner. It should be proudly displayed on a guitar stand on the floor, or perhaps it should be hung on the wall in a guitar holder! There are countless different guitar stands available, accommodating anywhere from 1 to 7 guitars, so it's up to you to fill them with lovely guitars!


Effects Pedals

Effects pedals are pedals that "color" the sound. There are countless different pedals available, each providing different effects. These can include reverb, distortion, delay, and many more!

Some of the effects pedals can "only" be used for one effect, but there are also pedals where there is the possibility of creating multiple effects in the same pedal. What you choose will, like almost everything else in guitar equipment, be a matter of preference. If you want the ability to completely customize your own sounds and effects, it may be a good idea to build your own "pedalboard" with your favorite pedals. If simplicity is preferred, you can choose a multi-effects pedal!

Overdrive: The overdrive pedal boosts your signal. One can say that overdrive pushes the signal higher. Overdrive comes from "driving" the tubes in a tube amplifier, so they overdrive and thus create overtones. This gives a good musical effect to the guitar!

Distortion: Distortion is very similar to the overdrive pedal. The distortion pedal is used to distort the sound from your guitar. You have certainly heard a distortion pedal in use if you listen to metal, rock, and similar genres. The sound produced by a distortion pedal can be described as if you turn up the volume too high on a system, so the speakers cannot keep up and begin to "clip" the signal. A distortion pedal is indispensable in any pedalboard if you are involved in harder rock genres!

Reverb: Reverb, gives the sound of space, as the name suggests. There are two types of reverb that account for 95% of all guitar reverb: spring reverb and plate reverb. Although both are often digitally recreated today, they originated from practical effects. Many amplifiers still have an analog spring reverb built-in. The sound in a spring reverb is created analogously by sending the sound through a physical spring, creating a unique sound that fits well with the guitar's twang. A plate reverb was also originally created using physical metal plates. There are very few analog plate reverbs today.

Delay: The delay pedal is used to "delay" the sound. The delay signal can be designed to occur at a specific time after the original signal and how quickly it should "fade away" again. It's a kind of echo effect, and delay is a good way to make your guitar stand out more in the mix among other instruments. A commonly used delay effect on guitar is a "slap-back" delay, which is a very short form of delay.

Chorus: The chorus pedal gives the effect of a "choir." The chorus pedal takes the sound and doubles it, often slightly detuning the second signal to make it sound like there are multiple guitars playing at the same time. It's a highly effective way to get a full and "big" guitar sound or create the illusion of multiple guitars playing simultaneously, even with only one person on guitar!

Looper: A looper is an extremely popular pedal. The looper can be used to record a loop that continues to play. This means that even if it's just you, you can create multiple layers of guitar rhythms or riffs playing simultaneously. On some of the larger models, you'll also find additional features such as drum beats, different effects, and more. A good example of how a looper can be used, if you're otherwise musically inclined, can be found in Ed Sheeran's performance at The Grammys in 2017!


Accessory Packages

Looking for something easy? Our skilled staff have put together various accessory packages to get you started on your guitar journey, so you don't have to search for individual parts. We've made the choice easy for you!

Electric Guitar Accessory Package

Western Guitar Accessory Package

Spanish Guitar Accessory Package


We hope that with this post, you're ready to dive into the world of guitars, or at least have become wiser about guitars and what they entail!

At SoundStoreXL, we're always here to help you out if needed! Our salespeople and customer service are happy to answer any questions, whether you're a beginner or a professional guitarist!