This acoustic guitar starter pack comes with a guitar made by Kona, and includes a guitar instruction book from the popular ‘For Dummies‘ series.
Overall: (4.0 / 5)
The ‘For Dummies’ series includes informative books on many subjects, and are a really good resource for learning…well, just about anything!
The guitar basics book is a great addition to this beginner level guitar kit, and should get you up and playing in no time.
- Full size, right handed guitar (suggested ages: 10 and up)
- 20 frets (neck joins the body at the 14th fret)
- Spruce top, with linden back and sides
- Maple neck with Indian Rosewood fretboard and bridge
- Glossy, natural wood finish
- Includes Three 0.7mm guitar picks, Instruction Manual, Neck Adjustment Tool, Electronic Tuner and gig bag
- Included tuner batteries
- 120-page ‘Guitar Basics for Dummies’ book
- Bonus Audio CD
This bundle has almost everything you need to get started playing the acoustic guitar. The beginner guitar book is a really nice addition and will take you from the absolute basics.
However, don’t expect this book to go right up to the advanced level (it is called ‘Guitar Basics’ for a reason!). Having said that, it’s a really nice book to learn the ropes.
The guitar is a full-size steel-strung acoustic guitar, made by Kona, and has 20 frets in total. In practise, however these types of guitars join the body at the 14th fret- and so you’ll only really be able to play up to the 12th fret or so.
The supplied tuner is designed just for guitars. This means that it has a little red light on it for each string, and can only tune the notes of the open strings (E A D G B and E). This is fine for most purposes, but watch out that you’re tuning the correct string to the correct pitch!
More info on the open strings can be found here.
What we liked
We really liked how the beginner’s book that comes with it assumes you really are a total beginner. This means it will take you through everything from holding the guitar, to playing your first chords. The diagrams and illustrations in the book are very clear, and the explanations are fairly easy to follow.
The tuner is also very good (and necessary if you want to sound good as a beginner). The interface is fairly straightforward- with a green light for ‘in tune’ and a red light either side. Just watch out for the little red lights underneath these ones- the ones telling you which string it thinks it’s trying to tune.
If you try tuning the A string, to an E, for example, you’re going to have problems with chords not sounding right! This type of tuner is also a bit tricky to use when the strings are way off (like when you put a new set of strings on, or haven’t played for a while).
This is because it can only tune the six notes of the strings- so you have to be close to those notes for it to know which string you’re trying to tune.
What we didn’t like
Well, not much for this price, to be honest. The carry case that you get with in the pack is OK for transporting the guitar short distances, or keeping the dust off, but it is a bit flimsy. The zipper is likely to brake, or the material split as it isn’t particularly hardy.
Also, the action (read about the parts of the acoustic guitar) is a little bit high. Then again, there are more expensive guitars out there, and this one is very playable. You’re never going to get the highest quality guitar in a starter set, but this guitar is easily good enough to get started with.
The accompanying book is- although brilliant and full of clear explanations- not aimed at young children. This shouldn’t be too much of a problem, however as the guitar is full (adult) size and the recommended age is 10 and up.
In conclusion, pairing a great acoustic guitar like this, with one of the best series of ‘teach yourself’ books out there couldn’t possibly be a bad combination. The fact is: if you want an ‘all in one’ package or introduction to your first steps in guitar playing- this is the set for you.
The ‘Guitar Basics for Dummies’ book, and the bonus CD make this starter pack a cut above the rest.