Updated by Bobby
Recently updated on June 17th, 2021
Updated the Yousician home page and made several minor changes to article formatting.
Yousician VS Guitar Tricks (comparison)
Our pick: Guitar Tricks
Though the two programs use different formats, Guitar Tricks far exceeds Yousician in terms of content quality, educational value, and how thoroughly concepts are covered.
Parent article: Guitar Tricks Review
Guitar Tricks and Yousician are two very different programs, yet with a shared goal of teaching you guitar from your computer in the comfort of your own home. On the one hand, Guitar Tricks is a collection of more traditional online courses and instructional videos, while Yousician uses a video game-style application (similar to Guitar Hero with some instructional video elements) to guide you through the material.
In this article, we're doing a direct Yousician VS Guitar Tricks side-by-side comparison, to see how the two programs stack up against each other.
To review these programs we actually buy memberships and use them. Guitar Tricks has been around for a long time and we have a lot of experience their platform. Yousician is a newer offering, though we've had time to buy, download and test their software in order to write this comparison. If you have questions about either program or about the review process, feel free to leave those in the comments section below.
Compare to Similar Programs
Listen to the Comparison (video summary)
Yousician VS Guitar Tricks: A Direct Side-by-Side Comparison
First, we'll look at some of the simple membership statistics that both programs offer. Guitar Tricks has an edge here with a longer free trial and a cheaper pricing structure (Yousician's Premium membership that includes everything is more expensive).
Members as of 2020
Free Trial Period
(Revised number: October 2020 - Yousician has previously have seven and 14-day free trials)
Total Number of Lessons
Styles (Genres) Covered
Monthly (non-promo) Price
Yousician doesn't have data available that discloses their membership numbers, nor is it easy to tell how many lessons they have in their system. That's not necessarily a problem, and is partly due to the fact that Yousician structures their material much differently.
Below is a quick look at the home pages for each program, both of which contain an informational link and a straightforward call to action.
Skill Level, Depth and Challenge
To compare two online guitar lesson programs, we need to compare how effective they are in terms of addressing specific skill levels. While both programs address an entire range of guitar and musical skill, we've found Guitar Tricks to be a little more comprehensive in terms of handling intermediate and advanced topics, at least in comparison to Yousician.
At the same time, working through the exercises in Yousician on the more advanced levels is legitimately challenging. The Yousician app actually listens to your guitar and tracks how well you're hitting each note, which makes more advanced riffs and licks a challenging exercise.
Here's our direct comparison:
One of the biggest strengths of Guitar Tricks is how they've been able to properly order and topically organize their content. It's not to say that Yousician does a bad job of this, but Guitar Tricks is just better when it comes to a comprehensive covering of each topic. Particularly when you get to intermediate and advanced material, the lack of a speaking, tutorial-style explanation really starts to hurt Yousician's value.
Structure, Design and User Experience
Design is a difficult comparison to make between these two programs, because Yousician isn't technically a website. It's an app that you download and run on your computer or mobile device. Still, both interfaces function in a similar manner, taking you through lessons and course material that are all sorted by various categories. Here's how they match up:
Home Page (logged out)
Interior Course Navigation
Guitar Tricks has recently upgraded their lesson interface and modernized the look of their website overall, making it even easier to navigate. One of the problems with Yousician's platform is that it can be a little difficult to determine where to go and how to sort material. It's not bad, but Guitar Tricks is definitely the better of the two programs in this regard.
Video Player Quality and Features
Again, Yousician doesn't center around video, but around an interactive Guitar Hero-style game process. This makes a direct comparison tricky, but they do share a lot of the same elements. For example, both can speed up or slow down, loop, and integrate social features.
Slow Down/Speed Up
Full Screen Quality and Pixelation
Yousician's interface looks great, is addictive, and actually does an amazing job of listening to your guitar. It can even identify missed notes within chords. Again, it's an imperfect comparison, but both interfaces are aesthetically well-designed, functional, and helpful to the user.
Supplemental material (meaning written, audio or graphically-presented content) is an area where Guitar Tricks significantly outpaces Yousician. Tabs, sheet music, diagrams, audio files and text summaries are all consistent features of Guitar Tricks lessons, while Yousician's material is almost entirely limited to the on-screen game interaction.
Tabs and Notation
Guitar Pro Files
You can see in the screen shot below that the Guitar Tricks lesson has tabs for description, notation, and jam track, while the Yousician interface just isn't structured in the same manner.
Song Lessons Section
Yousician does teach you to play songs as part of their curriculum.
However, almost all of their popular licensed songs require a "Premium" upgrade from an already paid membership. Guitar Tricks gives you access to all their licensed songs (and all material on the site) with their basic membership package (they only have one type of membership).
Guitar Tricks also teaches their songs with an actual instructor while Yousician relies again on their video game interface. Guitar Tricks, through both volume and quality of content, is the clear winner in this comparison.
Song Coverage (completeness)
Easy Song Versions
Concluding the Yousician vs Guitar Tricks Comparison
Both of these programs cater to a wide range of skill levels, while specializing in the beginner and novice player. However, Guitar Tricks is a much stronger program, for primarily the following reasons:
- Broadness and depth of content
- Instructor-led explanation
- Topical organization of material
None of this is to say that Yousician is a bad option. Their game program is actually very effective, and does a fantastic job of tracking your guitar and actually hearing your notes. If you try this out, and the Guitar Hero-style learning system is really effective for you, it's worth trying out for a month or two to see if you can stick with their program.
The decisive factor should be what's more motivating to you and what's going to make you want to pick up your guitar and play.
If you want a more traditional instructor-style explanation of the material and you want to go deeper into each topic to develop a more comprehensive knowledge, Guitar Tricks is the better option of the two.
Here are a few reviews we've done on other online guitar programs including Guitar Tricks:
Questions about the Programs
If you have questions about either of these programs or want to share your experience using them, feel free to drop a note in the comments section below. Again we've purchased, tested, and worked with both products to make sure our Yousician VS Guitar Tricks comparison is thorough and based on a first-hand account.