Because musical instruments can be expensive, new musicians who are enrolled in elementary schools, junior high schools, or high schools that loan out equipment may benefit by borrowing from the school to get started with playing.
Those that are not enrolled in any educational system would would do well to take private lessons and learn about different purchasing options. A few lessons are worthwhile even if it is only to get a recommendation for a good instrument shop. Remember: a shop is only as good as the person who runs it. A good recommendation goes a long way. Also, an instructor can offer a realistic price range and suggest brands to consider.
The instructor may also be able to suggest a rental store. Renting an instrument is a good idea because it allows the musician to develop an ear for what kind of tone he or she desires before making a major purchase. For young students it can take years to develop a sense of pitch and understand how a good tone should sound. Renting also makes sense if the student is not sure which device he or she would like to play. For example, some people start out with a brass option and then decide they would like to switch to a woodwind once they play in an ensemble.
Musical instruments come in different sizes to accommodate different levels of player skill. For example, brass items such as the trombone come in student and professional sizes. Both sizes have the same length of slide, but a professional trombone is wider. The narrow width of a beginner trombone is designed to accommodate the common noviceability to generate a sufficient amount of breath.
Stringed choices, such as the violin and viola, come in different sizes as well. A smaller sized violin is easier to hold for a young student with small hands. Of course, even virtuoso young violin players will utilize small violins.
A good musical store should have more than just instruments. Other music related items to look for in a quality store include:
- Maintenance accessories- Every major musical purchase, from guitars to snare drums, will require additional purchases to keep it in excellent shape. For example, brass items like the trumpet and trombone need oil to keep the valves and slide operating smoothly. Wind and brass options also require accessories to keep the instrument clean. Musicians that play stringed devices will need to purchase rosin for their bows.
- Sheet music and exercise books- Musicians will need to purchase sheet music to practice exercises and musical pieces assigned by their instructor.
Maintenance accessories and sheet music are now offered for sale online, in addition to musical instruments. Musicians should carefully consider the pros and cons of buying products online. An upside to online purchases is that a consumer can get a better price because the store typically has lower resource fees. In addition to this, buying equipment on sites like eBay through a well-placed bid can save even more money.
The downside to buying musical equipment online is that a musician does not generally get to try the item before he or she makes a purchase. Retail stores commonly allow a potential buyer to play the instrument within the business. They also may allow players to take home more expensive items for longer periods of time. Some online stores do have return policies. However, costumers may find it easier to deal with a store that has a large selection available right in front of them because this is ideal for trying each out and listening to the different tones.