Got Me a Guitar Now

The new Ashton CG44 Classical Guitar pack I won from eBay last week finally came in the office yesterday. I usually give my office address for online orders nowadays since nobody is ever at the house to receive an item when it’s delivered.

Needless to say, I was pretty excited to try it out. But, since I was in the office and I don’t play the guitar very well, I had to curb my enthusiasm until I got home. While in the office, I was still able to inspect the contents of the box at the very least.

First, here is the official specification for the Ashton CG44 Classical Guitar pack as written on Ashton’s website:

Fantastic value for anyone starting to explore the world of classical guitar. Based around Ashton’s rich-toned and resonant nylon stringed CG44 guitar, this pack also includes a sturdy gig bag for carrying your instruments to practice or performances, plus extra strings and picks. You’ll also get Ashton’s easy-to-follow Starter Pack Software, with lessons you can follow on your computer screen.

– CG44 Acoustic Guitar – Ashton Starter Pack Software includes Lessons, Tuner and Metronome – Gig Bag – Strap – Extra Strings and Picks

When I opened the box, I saw the guitar there in tip-top shape inside the cool gig bag (which would’ve cost an additional $20 if I bought it separately). Inside the gig bag pocket was the extra strings and picks as well as the manual. Also in the box was the strap and the Ashton Starter Pack Software in a CD.

What I was surprised to find missing was the guitar tuner and the metronome. For a moment, I thought I was swindled by the eBay seller. However, after another round of checking of the contents, I realised that the tuner and the metronome were indeed included. Except, instead of actual physical devices, they were software programs included in the CD.

The specs were a bit misleading but I can’t complain that the metronome and tuner weren’t there. And I thought I got myself a bigger bargain because it came with what I thought were physical metronome and tuner devices.

Another downer is the included Ashton Starter Pack software which was supposed to be a guitar lessons software that I could use to learn how to play the guitar. Don’t get me wrong, it works great. What I disliked about it is that it included only three lessons. You’d have to pay the makers of the software to unlock the rest of the lessons.

However, for the price I paid for it, even if the software was a disappointment and there wasn’t really a metronome and tuner included, I reckon it’s still good value for my money. Given another chance with the same budget, I’d still go for this pack again.

When I got home, I placed the guitar on my lap and quickly started to play some chords I’ve learned from when I was younger. It sounded very awful. I was hoping it came in tuned. I had no choice but to tune it first. Fortunately, I already kind of know how to tune a guitar.

I soon tuned the guitar and was able to play it like I did back in my younger days. That is, poorly. Now that I have a guitar, I can start learning how to play it. And by learning to play, I don’t mean just learning to play a few chords. In time, I hope to be able to serenade Raquel with it.

So, in summary, I’m very pleased with the guitar pack. Even though I found the software wanting, I’m quite happy with the guitar and the gig bag. Having extra strings and picks was a good bonus, too. If you are in search of a relatively cheap beginner’s guitar, I can recommend the Ashton CG44 Classical Guitar pack, for sure. Just keep in mind that you may want to buy a real metronome and guitar tuner afterwards as well as a full guitar method book or software.

Published in: on February 21, 2006 at 11:14 am  Comments (4)  

Closed house

Ever since we bought our new place, some people seem to think that hint dropping, joking and even openly inviting themselves to our place is a good idea. I don’t know if it’s only curiosity that’s driving such comments but I find them crass. I mean why in the world would you invite yourself to someone else’s home, especially if they barely know you, if you have some semblance of propriety?

People seem to think that we’re operating a guest room exclusively for them all of a sudden, somewhere to crash when they’re in town. Then there’re instances when acquaintances seem to think that our place would be ideal for an afternoon barbie with a bunch of friends. I wonder, when and where did we advertise our house to be a free hotel and park for anyone to use?

I vaguely remember a time when people would wait to be invited, understanding that it is a privilege, not a right. What’s with this pressure for us to invite you to our place? There’s nothing special about it – it’s a medium-sized house in the suburbs full of boxes and in desperate need of furniture we can’t afford to buy. Oh, I can hear it now, it’s okay, we could sit on the floor if need be. But that’s not exactly the point, is it? Or haven’t you gotten it yet? We’ll ask you over when we’re good and ready, and not a moment before.

Published in: on February 21, 2006 at 8:43 am  Comments (4)