Learn to play the piano or the guitar? Choose the musical instrument that suits you best
You want to start music but you don’t know which instrument to choose? Do you want to learn the piano or the guitar? And you’re right to ask yourself the question! The choice of instrument on which we will evolve in the coming years is essential to enter the musical world in the best conditions.
The instrument you choose will require a lot of work and practice and it is therefore necessary that it be deeply rooted in your personal sensitivity.
In this article we present the advantages and disadvantages of both instruments to help you choose between the piano or the guitar.
The advantages of learning to play the piano
The pianist is rarer than the guitarist
It doesn’t take a keen observer to notice that there are more people who can play the guitar than there are pianists. All you have to do is look around and you will realize that you know at least 2 or even 3 people who can play the guitar. Pianists are a little rarer. This is certainly due to the fact that the piano is a less practical (transportable) and more expensive instrument than the guitar. Thus, by practicing the piano, you will join a smaller community than the guitar community.
The piano does not require the purchase of consumables
Unlike the guitar, once you have bought your piano, you no longer need to reinvest (in the short term) in consumables. Indeed, owning a guitar requires changing the strings very frequently (every month). Keep this information in mind when choosing between piano and guitar.
The digital piano does not need to be tuned
For the acoustic piano, it’s a different set of handles. But a digital piano does not need to be tuned. You buy it, you play for several years and the sounds remain the same. The guitar, on the other hand, must be constantly re-tuned. This is important because, for beginner musicians, re-tuning a guitar is not an easy task; it requires a good ear for music.
A single instrument for two pianists
At the piano, it is very easy to play two people simultaneously. Many of the songs are composed with 4 hands, making it easier to share. A family with two child musicians will be able to share moments together, improvise and why not compose songs together!
The piano is an instrument that appeals more to the hearts
Have you ever listened to someone play the piano and thought you could listen to them for hours? Don’t worry, you’re not alone! Indeed, the piano has a hypnotic power and exudes intense emotion. The strings emit a sound much more powerful than that of the guitar when they come into contact with the hammer that hits them. And you don’t need to accompany him with a voice to produce this wonderful feeling!
Thanks to digital technology, these new synthesizer models offer a jack port that allows you to connect headphones or headphones. Beginners can work and learn without disturbing people sharing the same space! A good point that will help you choose between piano or guitar.
The disadvantages of learning to play the piano
The price of the piano
It is undeniable that the price of a quality piano is much higher than that of a guitar. Acoustic pianos, whose most classic models cost a few thousand euros, charm hearts but are not accessible to all budgets. Nevertheless, the alternative proposed by digital piano manufacturers has opened up the field of possibilities and promoted the democratization of piano learning. It is now possible to buy a piano for a few hundred euros, if not less. To help you make your choice, you can consult our article on our selection of pianos for beginners.
The question of transporting a piano
The question of piano transportability is at the heart of current issues. Indeed, once a piano has been purchased and installed in the house, it is very difficult to move it elsewhere without calling a mover! Even digital pianos, which are much smaller, are still difficult to transport when you want to take them on vacation or to visit friends. Some current companies are working on this problem: they are developing a foldable piano that can be transported anywhere. Some are soft and therefore rollable, others are hard and really foldable. But make no mistake, the price is obviously not the same between these two last models: the first, which has an incomparable touch to a real piano, costs only 50 to 100 euros. The second, on the other hand, which has a heavy and quality touch, can amount to up to 20,000 euros!
The difficulty of learning to play the piano
Learning to play the piano is not so easy. The most common problem for beginners is hand coordination: playing both hands simultaneously is not something logical and innate at first. This requires hard work and patience. So hang in there! But you can speed up your learning with some techniques and tips.
The tension of the hands when playing the piano
Have you ever tried to play several pieces of music after the piano without being used to playing frequently? If so, you must have felt this unpleasant effect: your hands are tightening and it hurts. You are obliged to stop for a few minutes to be able to start again. For this, there is no miracle formula: you have to play, play and still play every day. The hands gradually get used to it and become more and more resistant to this unpleasant effect.
The advantages when learning to play the guitar
The price of the guitar
To start with the guitar, you don’t need to buy a Gibson whose price can amount to several thousand euros. You can easily find good offers for acoustic pianos for a few hundred euros.
The transport of the guitar
You have certainly already seen, during your evenings, a person arrive guitar by hand comfortably stored in his case. It is a great advantage to be able to carry your favorite musical instrument so easily! So if you want to play an instrument in front of people to share special moments with them, jump at the opportunity!
The ease of learning the guitar
Unlike the piano, playing the guitar does not require real hand coordination. One hand pinches the strings to make the sounds, the other presses them to determine the tones for chords or arpeggios. Of course, playing the guitar is far from child’s play and it will require a lot of work, but the progression curve is faster than when you learn the piano, especially at the beginning.
No need to know musical theory
Guitar pieces have their own reading system: tablatures. Thanks to this system, you don’t need to know how to read music theory, you just have to place yourself on a grid, representing the strings of the guitar, to be able to play a piece to perfection! For the piano, it’s another story. Mastering the piano requires learning to read music theory, which can obviously be a barrier for the learner.
The disadvantages of learning to play the guitar
Just try it for a few minutes on a piece of guitar to realize it: the guitar hurts your fingers! The skin on your fingertips is initially very thin and is not used to rubbing so many times on something. As with the hand tightness encountered when learning the piano, the more you play, the less you will feel this unpleasant effect. Horn will gradually form on your fingers and you will be able to play for hours!
With a beautiful voice it’s always better
The guitar does not have the hypnotic effect that the piano can have. Plucked strings, not struck by a hammer, emit much less powerful vibrations. The nuances brought to the game are less noticeable in the audience. The guitar is an excellent accompaniment instrument and, if you couple it with a beautiful voice to an adapted melody, it will win the support of all hearts!
Change the guitar strings regularly
As mentioned above, owning a guitar and playing it regularly means having to change your strings very frequently. The cost is about twenty euros, but the task is not easy when you start and it can be a brake when you hesitate between the guitar and the piano. So keep this information in mind when you have to choose between piano or guitar!
In short: learn the piano or the guitar?
Let’s get to the point: we won’t give you a definitive answer here. Regardless of the age at which you want to start playing, the purpose of this article was not to make you decide between the piano or the guitar, but rather to introduce you to some positive and negative aspects of each of the two instruments to help you choose between the piano or the guitar. Everything depends on what you are looking for in music learning: collective? Loneliness? Regular maintenance? Emotion? Accompaniment with singing?….
Before choosing your instrument, therefore, carefully measure each of the points mentioned above. Once you have done that, you won’t regret it, we promise you!
So, learn the piano or the guitar? The choice is yours !
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