Infinite Guitar Review
Launched in March of 2008, Infinite Guitar was a relative late comer to the online guitar learning party. Since then Infinite Guitar has stocked its’ virtual shelves with nearly 1500 video lessons from 11 instructors. These videos are streamed from the web directly onto your computer screen with a very Hulu.com-like interface. Infinite Guitar provides instruction for every level of guitar student although they seem to be more deeply stocked with tutorials for intermediate through advanced players.
So what’s offered?
- 1476 Online video guitar lessons
- 90 Style Tutorials (lesson groupings) in Metal, Funk, Latin, Rock, Holiday, Acoustic, Jazz, Fusion, and Blues
- 205 Backing tracks (“Jam-Along” or “Play-Along” tracks)
- Full lesson plans for beginners, intermediate, and advanced guitar players
- An interactive chord finder
- A customizable metronome
- A user community of roughly 5000 users with social networking tools
In addition to this, gear guides, guitar playing tips, and recording tips were located in the member forums. Needless to say there were plenty of tools to aid the learning process.
It’s important to note that Infinite Guitar has both guitar leaning courses as well as guitar players resources. We’ll cover both separately.
The guitar courses are organized into lesson plans for beginners, intermediate, and advanced players. These are linked from the site’s top navigation bar. The lesson plans are on par with what we’ve seen from other guitar learning sites with one caveat. Each lesson plan can be taught by more than one of the 11 guitar instructors. Example the beginner’s lesson plan includes videos from 6 of the sites instructors. It can be refreshing to see a new instructor after a few lessons, however this can lead to potential reduced continuity from lesson to lesson within the same tutorial. That being said, of the lessons we reviewed, we detected few of these types of continuity issues. We found that each lesson plans curriculum was suitable for their prospective skill level with plenty of tips, trick and advice to help along the way.
Infinte Guitar has unique features that also make the site a full point and click guitar players’ reference. All of the individual lessons can be organized into custom lesson categories. So if for example, you wanted to view just the Metal or Latin videos, that option is literally one click away. Or if you wanted to see all the lessons regarding music theory, same thing, click a button and they are presented for you. This quick filtering of all the course materials takes the site beyond just being a set of guitar lessons.
The Song Tutorials section has video instruction for many original tunes from genres like Metal, Funk, Latin, Rock, Holiday, Acoustic, Jazz, Fusion, and Blues. These tutorials include anywhere from 5 to 8 individual video lessons each. Also included in the Song Tutorials section are tutorials on how to play “in the style” of many popular artists. So if you wanted to get that modern/classic sound of John Mayer, riff like Threat Signal, funk-pop like Maroon5, or even rock like ZZ Top this site can teach you.
Infinite Guitar also treated us to over 200 backing tracks to play along with. These often include multiple tempos per track. We found the same 9 genres represented here (Metal, Funk, Latin, Rock, Holiday, Acoustic, Jazz, Fusion, and Blues) as in the Song Tutorials section. This provides a natural practice extension to the Song Tutorials.
Each of Infinte Guitar’s lessons stream off the internet and play in your web browser. Infinite Guitar will work with any computer (PC or Mac) with Adobe Flash installed. If you can view a YouTube video, you should be able to play Infinte Guitar’s video clips. Their included video player comes with some nice options like “Pop-out” companion text from the lesson, “Turn the lights off” (that is to dim everything on the screen but the video), or to play the video’s full screen for a bigger picture.
The Backing Tracks also stream using the Adobe Flash format. So if you can view the videos you have all you need to also listen to the audio clips too. A special note, you can download the Backing Tacks in .mp3 format to load onto an iPod or other digital device for practicing on the go.
Clicking the “community” button on the top navigation menu brought us to Infinte Guitar’s forums. Here we found an active community of nearly 5000 members providing tips, conversation and feedback on topics like gear, lessons, and even life in general. The forum also allows for any member to create a blog to highlight the newest info they’ve found relevant to guitar playing. The forum also includes built-in social networking tools for updating user profiles, adding friends, sending private messages, updating the community calendar and more. We’ve found that strong user communities can increase student motivation, and Infinte Guitar’s forums have just the right tools for this.
Extra Tools & Features
Infinite Guitar went the extra mile by not just providing some free, off the shelf guitar tools, but by having custom ones developed for its members. The site’s dynamic visual chord library shows (using a picture of a fret board) finger placement custom to each chord. Also customizable is a “digital” metronome with custom BPM settings that also can be used in any web browser.
Student support was found to be fast and easy at Infinite Guitar. Instructors can be contacted directly through their own individual forums by any student. This streamlined process is fairly unique amongst the online guitar lesson world.
Technical support is via an email form on the site.
An Infinite Guitar premium membership can be had for as little as $8.25 per month on an annual subscription. Shorter terms are $9.50 per month quarterly and $10.95 per month for month-to-month terms.
A 3-day 100% refund term is offered which is indeed shorter than most online guitar courses. However the folks at Infinite Guitar also offer a free “basic” membership where students can take a look around and see if the site suits their needs. Also let’s not forget about those 8 free lessons for which students can use to perform their due diligence thus removing most of any risk.
We found Infinite Guitar to have a vast amount of guitar lessons. The site has done a good job of filling out their lesson catalog with songs and styles for just about every skill level. The site is logically laid out and easy to navigate. We would like to see a stronger focus on guitar learning over guitar reference even though there is room for both. Infinite Guitar has grown into a strong player in the world of online guitar lessons. For only $8.25 per month, this could just be the guitar lesson site for you. We confidently recommend Infinte Guitar for the person looking for reference as well as lessons.
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