zZounds' Beginner's Gear Guides
Get the gear you need to get started
First-time guitarist? Beginner bassist? Building your first home studio? Start here.
Ready to pick up a new instrument? If you're shopping for your first guitar, bass, drum kit or keyboard, our Beginner's Gear Guides can help you find entry-level instruments, accessories, and more. We even have affordable all-in-one packs with everything you need to get started. If you're building your first DJ rig, setting up your first PA system, putting together a home studio, or picking out a microphone, we've got Beginner's Gear Guides for you.
Beginner's Gear Guide: Guitar
If you're picking out your first guitar, the first step is to decide whether you want to go with an acoustic or an electric. There are many factors to consider when making this choice, but we suggest you choose the style of guitar you're most excited to play. In this Beginner's Gear Guide, we'll help you find a guitar and gear that fits you and gets you excited to play.
Beginner's Gear Guide: Bass
Ready to start playing electric bass? Start building your first rig here. Picking out a bass setup can be a daunting experience for a first-time player. We've put together this guide to help you find everything you need, from entry-level basses and amps to must-have practice accessories.
Beginner's Gear Guide: Drums
Picking out your first drum set means answering a few questions. Should you get an acoustic or electronic kit? What kind of cymbals will you need? What actually comes with the drum kit...and what additional parts will you need? Check out this guide and find out exactly what you need to get rocking.
Beginner's Gear Guide: Keyboards
Some beginner keyboardists want the closest thing to practicing on a real acoustic grand piano: an authentic-feeling digital piano. Other beginners may get inspired by jamming along with the built-in songs and rhythm patterns on an affordable personal keyboard. For budding composers, arranger keyboards offer higher-quality sounds with sophisticated backing tracks, while workstation keyboards have tools for layering tracks and recording your own music right within the keyboard. Or, you might dig a performance synthesizer with tons of tweakable tones and effects. Follow our guide to find your first board!
Beginner's Gear Guide: DJ
DJ gear has come a long way since the early days of pioneers like Larry Levan and Grandmaster Flash. While some hang on to the old-school coolness of two turntables, a mixer and a microphone, nowadays DJs can play entire sets with nothing but a laptop and DJ controller. Take a look at these sample setups and build a rig that's right for you. Whether you're touring the club scene or just workshopping mixes at home, we've got the DJ gear you need to get started.
Beginner's Gear Guide: Live Sound
Ready to build your first PA system? Whether you're a presenter, a musician, or a DJ, sooner or later you'll need a PA system that's easy to use, reliable, and powerful enough for the venues where you perform. To build a complete rig, you'll need speakers, microphones, a mixer, a subwoofer (only if you need a lot of bass), and accessories. Follow this guide for gear recommendations to get you started.
Beginner's Gear Guide: Home Studio
With a computer and few additional pieces of gear, you can have your own fully functional, professional-sounding home recording studio right in the comfort of your basement or extra bedroom. Follow our guide to find all the basic building blocks of the home studio: an audio interface to connect your gear to your computer, studio monitor speakers for critical listening, microphones for recording vocals and acoustic instruments, digital audio workstation software, and cables to connect it all.
Beginner's Gear Guide: Microphones
Eventually, just about everyone needs a microphone. Maybe you're a budding home studio producer looking to capture the perfect vocal track, or maybe you just need a simple USB microphone for recording podcasts at home. Maybe you're a music teacher looking to record your students' performances. Or maybe you're putting the finishing touches on a killer live PA system. No matter what kind of musician, audio engineer, or producer you are, our microphone guide has something for everyone.