As soon as you become a musician - which is really the moment your heart tells you you are - you will fall in love with your instrument. So, as in life, you will want the most attractive and soulful partner...
You will probably want to talk to other people, mostly importantly your teacher, before buying an instrument, but here's our short guide.
Try before you buy
Even if you can't yet play your chosen instrument, have a go! And/or get someone else to play and just see what you think of it.
Check the quality
Look at the workmanship. If you're looking at a guitar, is it hand or factory-made? If a trumpet, how well do the valves work?
You might need to travel around a bit to look at instruments for sale, but there are some amazing deals to be had online. Acoustic/traditional pianos are particularly good value because fewer and fewer people have the space for them these days, and "need them gone".
Or go to a music shop?
There are still a lot of music shops around and the staff can usually give you good advice. You can try a range of instruments and decide which one is best for you.
To find our reccomended stores list go to our 'stores' page:
Get the best instrument you can afford
Even as a beginner, it's much more satisfying to work with a good quality instrument. No need to go over the top - you don't need a Stradivarius to knock out "Happy Birthday" on the violin, but if you choose a very cheap instrument you may regret it!