Learning how to play a new instrument or joining the band are fun experiences. Sometimes you need to get a new instrument for these purposes making the experience even more exciting. If you are buying an instrument for the first time, especially if you are a beginner with no pro guidance or advice, this task may be a bit daunting.
This challenge is because of the different brands out there. It could also be because you need to choose an instrument best suited for you. The Best Student Flutes Beginners or best flute brands for intermediates are made to specification. For instance, because so many beginners are young players, the flute is made to have small keys, and you can get curved head joints for your flute. The advantage of a curved head joint is that brings the flute keys closer to the body thereby reducing stretching.
While we naturally associate a high price tag with fancier features and better quality, in reality it is not always that simple. Some higher priced instruments aren’t necessarily as better as the price difference may suggest.
For example, a $1,500 flute will likely have better quality over $300 one. But often it won’t be $1,200 better.
For flutes and other woodwind instruments, it is even harder for beginners to notice the differences between a cheaper instrument and a pricey one.
You need a trained ear to recognize the subtle differences between the sounds, which only comes with playing experience.
So, even if you can afford a more expensive pro flute, as a beginner the benefit of using that instrument over a cheaper one won’t be as apparent. You are better off settling on a functional beginner flute for now.
With that out of the way, let’s now consider your options:
Best Student Flutes Beginners
Jean Paul USA FL-220 Student Flute
Even if you are going out to specifically look for an inexpensive beginner flute, the plan is likely there to upgrade to a better instrument at some point.
Some may already have a good instrument but require a cheaper one to practice with on their travels. This FL-220 Student Flute by Jean Paul USA is great for both scenarios.
The fact Jean Paul trains much of its expertise on beginner and intermediate level instruments probably explains how it manages to make good quality instruments at such low prices.
At its low price point, the FL-220’s intonation is surprisingly quite good. The power forged metal keys, while durable, also ensure even response and consistent playability.
Other Features and Benefits
- An embouchure plate designed with beginners in mind makes the instrument easy to play for learners,
- The plateau keys and offset G-key make the flute easier to hold and play for young learners with smaller hands,
- Comes in a sturdy, contoured carry case that protects the instrument and makes it easy to travel with,
- Includes accessories like a cleaning cloth, gloves, and cleaning rod,
- Sells at a great price, which makes it a fit for a child you aren’t sure will keep their interest in the instrument.
- The cupronickel body isn’t the strongest and may not withstand the occasional rough handling by inexperienced learners.
Gemeinhardt 1SP Student Flute
Besides the omnipresent Yamaha, there aren’t many manufacturers with as much expertise in flutes than Gemeinhardt.
But not everyone can afford or is willing to pay so much for Yamaha beginner flutes. Often buyers of beginner flutes are parents who would want something cheap that is still decent quality.
Yes, you can look at the Gemeinhardt 1SP Student Flute flute’s poor quality carry case and immediately dismiss the flute itself as poor quality. The cleaning rod is a cheap plastic too.
But looking at the quality of the flute itself, a counter argument could be that the company simply chose to concentrate resources where it matters most – the flute itself.
Other Features and Benefits
- At this level of quality and considering the prestige and reputation of the brand, the price can’t be beat,
- Solid construction and a silver plated alloy body ensures dependability and function.
- Tonal quality is certainly a lot better than you would expect for a student model at this price point,
- Plateau keys and an offset G key gives it playability and ease of handling, especially for young learners,
- Ably balances the oft competing demands of affordability, durability, and quality of sound,
- The carry case is a poor quality and looks anything but ‘cool’, which may bother your child.
Prelude FL711 Student Flute
Selmer is a trusted instruments maker. So you can bet any instrument that carries their name will be a quality instrument.
It does not have any rock star appeal, but the Prelude FL711 Student Flute student flute works. The design of the instrument looks carefully considered. It certainly delivers on the tone and playability.
To ensure inexperienced players play for long without getting worn out, the flute uses learner friendly offset G-key and plateau holes.
The flute is built to last, something it needs to be as it is sure to be knocked and banged about if you are buying for a young child.
Other Features and Benefits
- Has a standard silver plated body, which protects the instrument and is suitable for allergy sufferers,
- The stain-resistant silver plating gives a smart polished finish and also makes the flute easier to clean,
- A lightweight body means the flute is more comfortable to play for younger students, which encourages them to practice for longer,
- The flute’s overall design, including offset G-key, closed holes ensure comfort and smoother control for beginners still to master their technique,
- Comes with a carry case.
- On the balance of features, the flute seems overpriced.
Gemeinhardt 2SP Student Flute
There is little arguing against the fact Gemeinhardt’s flute game is on point. And with the 2SP Student flute, they produced a beginner flute of outstanding quality.
Made in America and highly recommended by music teachers, the Gemeinhardt 2SP Student Flute is made to stringent specifications, almost at par with some of the brand’s finest flutes.
And with a reliably consistent response and solid construction, this flute has been trusted by learners and advancing flutists for decades.
Perhaps overly impressed by the flute’s overall appearance and quality some people have mistakenly called it an intermediate flute. Gemeinhardt themselves classify this as a student flute.
The key action isn’t pro level quality but is probably the best you will get for a student flute. It certainly is the best you will get at this price.
Other Features and Benefits
- A tough build quality adapts the flute to the occasional clumsy handling of inexperienced players,
- A triple silver plating enhances durability and gives the flute a beautiful, easy-to-clean finish,
- Aided by a smooth key action, the flute plays like a dream right through the range,
- Professional padding ensures exceptional tonal quality,
- Uses stainless steel springs, which are stronger and more reliable,
- Comes with a carry case as well as a cleaning rod and cloth.
- The straight headjoint means younger children may struggle to reach all the keys.
Yamaha YFL-222 Student Flute
There was almost always going to be a Yamaha flute on the list.
And again, the Japanese instrument maker is here strictly on merit. Their YFL-222 Student Flute Student flute is an exceptionally good beginner flute.
If you can afford it, this wouldn’t be a bad start to your learners’ journey on flute.
While the cheap flutes will be playable for absolute beginners, and generally serviceable, eventually the mechanical problems will make them unreliable. This Yamaha is an upgrade on those.
This flute is the international version of the same model made in USA. This one is made in Indonesia to the same exacting Yamaha standards, albeit selling at a cheaper price.
Other Features and Benefits
- With a nickel/silver body the instrument is very well built,
- An even, pleasing response right through the range,
- Screw key adjustments with resistance inserts ensure accurate, smooth adjustments and prevents the keys from loosening gradually,
- Alignment on the foot joint will guide and allow correct assembly by inexperienced beginners,
- Comes with a sturdy plastic case that will protect the instrument when not in use,
- A shoulder hook that makes the instrument easier to hold for younger players is also included.
- Perhaps too expensive and not a practical choice for absolute beginners.
And Our Pick Is ….
The Gemeinhardt 2SP Student Flute.
It is built to last, has great intonation, and is made in America, which is always reassuring.
While the Yamaha YFL-222 Student Flute is a great instrument, the fact it looks different than the one made in America may make some people doubt its build quality.
Selmer’s Prelude FL711 Student Flute and the Gemeinhardt 1SP Student Flute are both good beginner flutes, while the FL-220 Student Flute is a cheap, decent alternative, especially for absolute beginners.
However, it isn’t difficult to see why the Gemeinhardt 2SP has been trusted by student flutists for so long.
It is a well made instrument, with wonderful intonation that will not disappoint you, and is available at a fair price.
Here is to your joyous, fulfilling journey on flute!
Types of Musical Instruments
Musical instruments can be categorized depending on the way they generate sound. All musical instruments fall under one of the following – string, wind, percussion and keyboard, though there may be further divisions and sub-divisions.
Here are a few examples:
- String instruments include guitars, violins, ukuleles and cellos.
- Wind instruments include pipes, sax, clarinet, flute and such other types.
- Drums, bongos, cymbals and bells are percussion instruments.
- Keyboard instruments include pianos, harpsichords, organs and accordions.
While these are the more commonly played musical instruments, over thousand musical instruments are available across the world, including folk instruments.
General Things to Consider Before Buying a Instrument
Here are some of the things that you should take into consideration before choosing a suitable instrument:
- The age of the student: The child needs to have developed motor skills to be able to play
- The character/personality of the student
- Your interests, the kind of music you want to play
- The cost, the amount of money you’re willing to spend
- The practicalities involved (such as size, portability, maintenance of the instrument)
Research Prices & Competing Stores
Do spend some time looking for instruments and their prices online; you can find some great deals online. Also, do check competing online stores. For instance, Amazon and Walmart are great for finding beginner instruments and toys for kids. Merchants like Amazon, zZounds, Musiciansfriends have wide range of instruments for pros. You will find great deals on guitars on sites like Guitar Center.
If you’re looking for an expensive instrument, do check it out at your local store as well. While you may not be able to get lower prices, you will be sure about the model that you have selected.
When buying online, see what accessories are included, and also factor in shipping costs.
Beginner Instruments for Students
The good thing about buying a new musical instrument is that you now have access to several products that are available for cheap. These are designed for beginners and offer great features, are functional, but don’t cost much.
Although a student or beginner instrument is a cheaper version of what professionals play, these ‘cheaper’ instruments are not sub-standard products.
In fact, a good student instrument comes with several features that assist students to progress faster and also to enjoy music making.
These are easier to play, offer less resistance (string instruments), is easier to blow (wind instruments), for the inexperienced player. For example, a lower action on a guitar makes playing easier for the young or inexperienced hands.
Get Creative With Home Made Musical Instruments
Musical instruments can also be made at home using items of daily use (mostly percussion); this works great for kids.
You can make almost anything, from shakers and jingle bracelets to drums and tambourines. Its easier to make percussion instruments at home.
It turns out cheaper and you won’t feel bad if the kids break the toy instrument.
Homemade musical instruments help your child to be creative and can keep them busy. Kids will also have a great time, playing in their own band at home.
Are You Already a Player?
If you are already a player then you should avoid picking up the cheapest musical instrument.
Its best to go out and play all the instruments you can, and pick the one that appeals to your ears, suits your requirements and your budget (you should be open to increasing your budget a bit, in case you get hold of some really good musical instrument).
You should also go through the used gear/blemished gear section on top online merchants. You can find some really good instruments with minor bruises (but in perfectly working conditions) for good discounts.
Also Read: Buy used/blemished gear for cheap.
You can Buy, Rent or Borrow?
While everybody would love to buy a new musical instrument, in some cases its just not the practical thing to do.
You can always choose to buy a second-hand instrument.
Some music services (organizations contracted by the Local Authority to provide music tuition in state schools and at music centers) and schools offer instruments on loan to beginner students.
Then there are some (including some retailers) who operate rental systems. For a modest fee, they provide you a musical instrument for a trial period so that you get sufficient time to make up your mind.
The great thing about these options is that it allows you to get a feel of what is involved in learning, and how to take care of and maintain the instrument, before actually buying one.
In case you’re considering purchasing a second-hand instrument, make sure you check it for suitability, before it is used.
You Don’t Have to Buy the Most Expensive Instrument
Musical instruments can be expensive, especially if you are seeking the best option available on the market. In general, these can cost anything from $100 to over $10000. For example, a good Yamaha or Roland keyboard can cost almost $2000.
That is why used musical instruments are often a good choice, especially if you are learning to play a new instrument.
You definitely don’t have to buy the most expensive instrument out there. Choose something that fits your purpose. Feel free to consult a music teacher or a music shop.
Its important that the instrument is appropriate for your child, no matter how you intend to obtain it.
Most young string players, for example, begin learning on smaller sized instruments as they feel uncomfortable playing full-sized instruments (too large for them).
For beginners it is advisable to invest in musical instruments in the lower price range. However, you also should keep in mind that learning on a sub-standard instrument can be demotivating and usually prevents progress.
Don’t Go Too Cheap
If you’re buying an instrument for a child, you can pick a cheap one but for a serious beginner you want something better. A $50 cheap guitar is unlikely to last long and may not sound inspiring. And if it breaks down, you will have to buy another one (basically you will end up spending more money than you would spend buying a quality, new guitar).
A quality instrument costs more but it saves money in the long run and it will make you practice more.
Use the Power of Social Media
Have a huge social media presence? Do you (or your friend) manage social media accounts for some school, college or charitable institution? If yes, you can post that you’re looking for a music instrument and ask for help.
You never know; one of your followers might want to sell an instrument. In some cases, they might even give it for free (you will have to collect it though).
Having a huge online presence can help you find help in the online community.