The acoustic guitar market is more diverse than it has ever been and defining the qualities of 'the best acoustic guitar' is a tough challenge – but it's a pleasant one . There are not just more manufacturers, countries of origin, purposes and model iterations than ever before. Across the last decade we've seen a leap in the quality of the instruments being produced at lower price points making the market even more competitive. Don't Miss. The best acoustic guitar strings in the world today. The selection you'll see below represents a compelling cross-section of.
There are a number of great acoustics in the sub $1000 price range, which is great from the point of view of having variety, but it can make it difficult to choose. But don't worry, we've used our considerable experience to present you with the best options under $1000, along with some details to help you decide on which one to buy.
These guitars feature tone woods, durability, attention to detail, and sounds that are comparable to many more expensive models. The Best! Martin DSR2 It was a close call, but ultimately, the Martin DSR2 tops all the best acoustic guitars under 1000 dollars. Although the runner-ups did come close and can arguably beat it on some aspects, this well rounded guitar served as our standard to which other guitars were measured.
If you are looking for a great all around acoustic guitar, best get it from one of the oldest and biggest brands - C.F.
Martin & Co. Getting a full featured and great sounding Martin guitar at a retail price of less than $1000 is already a very sweet deal, considering their legacy and popularity.
To be specific, the Martin DSR2 will exceed your expectations with its craftsmanship and playability, which is comparable to more expensive models, albeit with less aesthetic embellishments. The guitar comes with an all-solid body - solid sitka spruce top, and solid sapele for the back and sides. With Martin's superb build consistency and after sales service, you can be sure that you have yourself an instrument that will last a lifetime, when reasonably taken cared of.
And since Martin themselves developed and popularised the dreadnought shape that this guitar comes in, you can be sure that the build quality and resulting tone is of high quality. With great reviews and raves for this guitar, the Martin DSR2 is simply the one to beat in this price range. Manufacturer: | Runner-ups - Close to the Best... Taylor 210 Deluxe Taylor is a relatively new comer in the acoustic guitar making industry but their popularity and status now rivals that of established brands when it comes to quality acoustic guitars.
It may not have the same historical significance or vintage styling, but the Taylor 210 is a strong contender for the top spot with its equally impressive tonewoods - solid sitka spruce top and Indian rosewood back and sides.
The Taylor 210 features the Dreadnought shape, the most familiar of all acoustic shapes. This traditional body is known for its volume, punch and deep lows. Combining that to Taylor's modern thinner bracing that allows the top to move faster, the result is to an airy mid-range tone that works with various musical styles, be it delicate flat picking or all-out strumming. The guitar's ebony fretboard, 25.5" scale and comfortable neck profile add to its already respectable playability. Sitting at $100 cheaper than the Martin D1-GT, we will understand if you choose this over our top choice.
Manufacturer: | Washburn R314K Vintage Parlor Being one of the oldest guitar brands in the world, it is only fitting for Washburn to produce exemplary vintage style parlor guitars like the R314K. This guitar is based on actual instruments that Washburn produced back in the late 19th to early 20th centuries. It features vintage style appointments, parlor guitar shape, tone and appeal, but built using reliable modern building construction and better tonewood choices. With a price tag of just under $500, this guitar comes with conventional tonewoods - spruce top and trembesi for the back and sides.
But what makes it appealing is its old school parlor guitar design and aged finish. Other premium components include the quartersawn sitka spruce bracing, mahogany neck, rosewood fingerboard and bridge, elegant slotted headstock design, intricate inlays, bone nut and saddles. It is a great deal for those who are looking for a true to form acoustic parlor guitar.
Manufacturer: | Yamaha FG830 The Yamaha FG7830 is an affordable workhorse acoustic guitar, featuring a solid spruce top, rosewood back/sides, nato neck, and rosewood fingerboard. The material used alone make this guitar an excellent deal.
Getting a solid spruce top at this price range is already quite impressive, add to that the guitar's rosewood fingerboard bridge and it easily can match the specs of more expensive acoustics. The use of light and resonant wood gives the FG830 a dynamic tone that you wouldn't usually find in this price range.
The guitar comes with rosewood back and sides that blend well with the spruce top. This is a tried and tested combination that gives out an open acoustic tone.
All these materials combine to provide what many users describes as a "lively" tone. This 25.5" scale guitar is certainly an interesting choice for students and beginners that are looking for a truly budget friendly acoustic. Manufacturer: | If you feel that we missed a great guitar that lies below the $1000 price range, or if you have your own list of the best acoustic guitars under 1000 bucks, you can let everyone know through the comments section.
Related Information: I agree about the Martin guitar supremacy in acoustics. However, Martin relies in his reputation to charge and profit beyond imagination. Consider the pricing and quality wood used by Godin --Solid Wood Series-- Why Martin, using less appealing woods, such as sapele, laminate stratabond necks, etc., cannot do the same and sell their guitars with some kind or rationality, dignity and respect.
After all Martin has made billions of dollars selling guitars, they have had already their moment to make billions profit. They maybe, maybe not, using the same suppliers to buy woods; just like Godin and the others manufacturers and luthiers. Conversely, Martin culture and reputation --created by rich artist that can buy their guitars with the money earned from you and I, allows the company to behave just like the banks and the people who is managing the national economy.
The Recording King is a fairly unknown yet in my opinion very good guitar brand. My friends older brother sold his guitar to buy this one along with some other things and I must say it plays great with the price. Its an OOO style guitar which is thinner than the standard dreadnought body and after playing on dreads for about 6-7 years I thought it was a nice transition. I'm a teenage musician who came across a pretty well paying job and now I'm looking to upgrade my guitar. I'm willing to spend around 800 and although its not certain yet I believe that in the end I will purchase the recording king.
I have a Recording King RD-327 and it looks like a Martin D-45. It sounds really great for the price. My Recording King R0S-626 that looks like the Martin 000-28VS also sounds incredible. Don't get me wrong, I have 2 Vintage Martin Guitars and I still like playing my Recording King guitars as well as my Martins.
I thought the Epiphone Masterbuilt AJ500R might have made the top 4. It has a sitka spruce top and solid rosewood back and sides. Like the Yamaha L series it is now made in China (except the higher end 26 and 36 which are still made in Japan) and I have read - for both makes - that there are quality control issues regarding construction of the neck and flaws in the finish.
However, it appears to be a good enough instrument for Russ Barenberg who plays the mahogany version on the link below: I am actually looking for an all solid guitar for $1,000. And Im looking at Eastman E10D, Larrivee D-02, Martin D-1GT, Yamaha A3M and Cole Clark FL1. I have tried out all excelpt the Cole Clark FL1.
Here are my observatrions -The Eastman appears to have the volume and balance tone I was lookin for. -The Larrivee D-02 was warm and the action of the guitar I tried was low and easy to play. -The Yamaha A3M almost sounded like a Taylor 110 but the low E string was a little too near the edge of the neck for me.
-The Martin was also good, but for my need the D-1GT is a low end for Martin, while the other brands I tested it was a mid-level in terms of the materials. i did try also the Seagull Maritime (as I have an S6 original), its good for finger styles, however when strum its has a lot of mid-range. I own a Vester and a Norman, however I recently tried 20 different guitars, including Taylor Washburn Martin Gibson Epiphone Ibanez Takamine Yamaha Fender and Seagull.
The best sounding guitar at 1/3 of the cost of the Martin and Gibson, and 1/2 the cost of the Takimine or Taylor was the Seagull Performer Jumbo mini. A friend of mine who teaches guitar showed me his new recent purchase. It's called a Teton guitar. I tried it out. Now, I play a Martin D-41.
Neck is on the small side, and uncomfortable. STill sounds fantastic, but I need a larger neck, otherwise, my Martin is to die for. This guitar he had fit my hand.
Sounded damn good, too. Almost as good as my Martin. Not quite, but good. I thought he had paid at least a grand for it. No way, he said. 400. What? It felt great to play, sounded good. I told him, I wanted one. Didn't come with a case, tho. I don't care, I want one. They sell a 12 for almost the same exact price. I'll buy my own case. I can't believe it. They sell them almost with any type of woods you want. Cedar tops, Sitka tops, Mohogany backs, sides, Rosewood back, sides you name it.
I am getting one, soon. Teton guitars.com. They don't look all that great on-line, but once you hold one and play one, you need one.
i have read about seagull quitars it seems nice but i've never try one i wandering about s6 and his tone quality,the price seems ok for the quality but i dont know many things for the sound because no one sell it in my country.,i want to play songs like nick drake john martyn etc.. can you tell me is it have to many mid range as maritime does?is it ok for finger picking?i need a opinion of an experienced player,or if you have another quitar to propose me in the same price you are welcome I have two Taylors (114ce and 414ce) and two Seagulls (s6 and 25th Anniversary).
I bought the s6 used for $280 last month to have a guitar at my son's place, where I visit. The s6 is the easiest to play and has the best feel of all of the guitars I have. It doesn't have the volume of the Taylors, but it's damn good. I use to own a zager guitar and the label was coming off and under the label it had the factory sticker on it and Yes it said made in indonesa so I called zager and he told me mouth to mouth over the phone that their guitars are made overseas and then they set them up when they get them shipped from the factory in indonesa(pardon my spelling).
So no they are NOT made in the USA. And NO they don't pay return shipping. The Yamaha FG730S is the Rosewood version of the FG720S. It is fantastic. Have a Taylor K10 and needed a more everyday guitar. Tried the Taylor 210 and the FG720 and a few Martins, Seagulls, Epiphones, Breedloves, etc. The FG730S stacked up against all of them.
It could have been a diamond in the rough, 'cause I used to sell guitars at a retail shop and would play 5-6 of the exact same model and one would rise to the top and one would be far inferior to the rest, while the others were all kind of average with one another. This was true with budget priced stuff as well as the top dollar stuff.
Anyway, the 720 is a great deal, but thought I'd mention the 730 as another alternative. It's got a little more bottom end and a little more presence, definitely not as flat (in regards to EQ) as the 720.
best dating yamaha acoustic guitar under 100000 - Best Acoustic Guitars Under $1000
Last Updated: Nov-07-2018 Our chart full of magnificent mid-range acoustics needed a bit of a refresh after plenty of price and model changes in the past few months. We removed a few of the more dated models, including the and , and replaced them with the , , the groovy , and our new top spot, the excellent . Table Of Contents • • • • • • • • • • • With $500 in your pocket, you suddenly open yourself to some of the best acoustic guitars available.
While we aren’t yet in the premium market, the guitars in this category sure do feel a lot higher-end, with some punching well above their weight in terms of look, feel and tone. Whether you have your heart set on a big brand name like Fender, Epiphone or Seagull, or are happy with whatever seems like the best bang for your buck, you’ll probably find it on our chart below.
The ten acoustics we’ve highlighted give you a great taste of what’s on offer in this mid-range price bracket. Let’s check them out! Top 9 Best Acoustic Guitars Under $500: Image Acoustic Guitar / Rating Summary Check Price Total of 4.88/5 The S6 is a proven quality guitar with great price.
Total of 4.72/5 Epiphone’s Hummingbird delivers affordable vintage class with modern upgrades. Total of 4.75/5 Surf’s up with this cool Fender electro-acoustic! Total of 4.88/5 An electro-acoustic with a truly premium tone. Total of 4.67/5 The AEW40ZW makes use of exotic zebrawood for a true eye-catching look. Total of 4.72/5 A pre-war inspired blues machine from The Loar. Total of 4.42/5 The guitar produces traditional sounds enhanced with a modern touch.
Total of 4.65/5 A brilliant cowboy classic electro-acoustic from the kings of retro. Total of 4.42/5 It is not for everyone, but for those who are looking for this kind of instrument. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Seagull is making great guitars and is no exception. It has a solid cedar top with Canadian wild cherry back and sides. The wood is highlighted with the semi-gloss finish. The neck is silver leaf maple with a rosewood fingerboard.
The bridge is also made of rosewood. It has a strong and bright sound with the boom-y-ness contained by the modified dreadnaught style body. The neck is slightly wider than a standard acoustic, and finger pickers will really enjoy the extra spacing. There is also a “slim” version with a narrower neck for those who prefer a slimmer neck width. Additional options include adding electronics, a left-hand version, or a case. This guitar is the overall winner in chart as well.
Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Cut from the same cloth as the iconic Gibson Hummingbird, Epiphone’s affordable electro-acoustic Hummingbird PRO proves an excellent guitar for rock, blues and pretty much anything else you can think of.
With the classic 1960s square-shouldered dreadnought body, the guitar features a solid spruce top, while the back and sides are made of select mahogany. Mahogany is also used on the SlimTaper D-shaped neck, which has a rosewood fretboard and 20 frets. As mentioned in the guitar comes fitted with the Shadow ePerformer preamp, with some versatile controls to tweak the naturally rich sound. Throw in the familiar Hummingbird pickguard, a rosewood bridge, and quality Grover tuners, and you have a pretty great electro-acoustic!
Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Fender aren’t particularly famous for their acoustic guitars, but their Sonoran SCE is one cool electro-acoustic that thoroughly deserves its place in this chart thanks to the awesome looks, sound and playability on offer. There’s no doubting this is a Fender-designed model, with a fast-playing 20-fret maple neck, a pallete of color choices, and the iconic Stratocaster headstock up top.
With a groovy vintage vibe, the single-cutaway dreadnought body features a top made of solid spruce, with laminate mahogany back and sides, while the decoration – including the unique checkerboard rosette – is top notch.
As we mention in the , the Fishman electronics are versatile and really help this acoustic sing. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Moving into top spot in our chart is the incredible Yamaha LS6, which is part of the brand’s luxurious L Series. And, after reading our , it should be no surprise to see why! It features an all-round awesome look, feel and sound, which truly edges on the premium. The sound in particular is a highlight, as the LS6 boasts a rich tone akin to something you’d find on a solid-topped guitar aged for a decade or two – partly thanks to the A.R.E technology used on the solid Engelmann spruce top.
The 5-ply mahogany/rosewood neck is also a joy, while the electronics are subtle but effective. It’s seriously hard to fault this acoustic for the sub-$500 price. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Spruce and cedar too bland for you? You’ll be keen to read more about this eye-catching , which makes full use of exotic zebrawood on the top, back and sides.
With a distinctive jumbo body shape and soft Florentine cutaway, this electro-acoustic model also features a satin-finished C-shaped mahogany neck, with a rosewood fretboard and 20 easily accessible frets. As for electronics, the AEW40ZW comes loaded with an Ibanez-designed AEQ-SP2 preamp with a Fishman Sonicore pickup. This system includes simple volume, bass and treble controls, an on-board digital tuner, and both Balanced XLR and 1/4” outputs for plenty of versatility.
It looks great, plays great, and offers a big vibrant tone with plenty of brightness. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: The LH-204 Brownstone is an excellent mid-range small-bodied acoustic from the Chinese brand, The Loar.
The company’s focus is on producing authentic pre-war inspired acoustics, and they succeed with the Brownstone. For obvious reasons, it’s generally lacking much in the way of decoration, but it impresses in pretty much every other area including upgraded hardware and a solid build quality.
It features a brown-stained solid Sitka spruce top with laminated mahogany back and sides, and produces a wonderfully woody and mellow tone – perfect for the blues. The C-shaped mahogany neck feels very playable, and sports a padauk fretboard with 19 medium frets. There’s more on this cool vintage guitar in the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: is a ooo body sized acoustic by Blueridge. The ooo body style is the original folk size brought to you by Martin during the prewar era.
The top is solid Sitka spruce with mahogany back and sides. The bracing is forward X-pattern that is consistent with the vintage body style. The slim neck is made of mahogany with an East Indian Rosewood fingerboard. Mother of Pearl inlay is used for both the dot inlays and headstock ornate inlay. Southpaws will be able to enjoy this guitar too since it comes in a left-handed model as well. The sound has a focused midrange tone with plenty of vintage vibe.
Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Inspired by the 1950s cowboy classic 6022 Rancher, this modern G5022CE Rancher electro-acoustic from Gretsch offers retro style in bucket loads, with an eye-catching Savannah Sunset finish, distinctive triangular soundhole, gold-plated machine heads, and thumbnail inlays among other vintage additions. The guitar itself has a jumbo body with a deep single cutaway. The top is crafted from solid spruce with laminated flamed maple on the back and sides.
The neck is mahogany, with a rosewood fretboard and 21 frets. Acoustically it sounds bright and vibrant, although can be a little quieter than you’d expect. However through the Fishman Isys III preamp system this is less of a problem. Make sure to . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: With the Vintage Series of guitars Washburn is going for a used but not abused look and feel.
They are resurrecting their original designs from the late 19th and early 20th century. The is a parlor sized instrument with a spruce top and trembesi back and sides. The mahogany V-shaped neck has an ebony fingerboard. 1800s style inlays are used to further that old look that Washburn has captured so well. The hardware is distressed and the finish has a vintage look to it. The tone is very good and it projects well. If you are looking to add a parlor style acoustic then the R314KK is a great addition to anyone’s collection.
What Kind Of Guitar You Can Get For $500? In this price bracket are some real good guitars that are stage worthy. They are made with nicer materials and better quality, which means better tone.
These guitars will also be dressed up better with nice rosettes, abalone accents, and better wood grains. In this price range good is the norm and not the exception. Who Should Look For Such Guitars? Those who are buying in this range are new students who want to start out on a better guitar, performers looking for something that has good tone and sturdy construction, and hobbyists who want more than an all laminate to play around on.
These guitars can cover all those wants and needs, and even provide a bit more if you take your time and research your purchase. This is where guitars really start to get good. Also don’t forget to check out our article on . Are $500 Guitars Upgrade-able? Don’t be afraid to make aftermarket upgrades to your new guitar. If you don’t have the expertise to do it yourself, then find a good tech to do the work for you.
Don’t make the upgrades with an eye to sell the guitar for more money. Do the upgrades to make the instrument work better for you. What you might think is an upgrade someone else may not like or they might want an unmodified version to do their own upgrades to it. Should I Buy A Used Guitar? Buying used is definitely an option, but I would definitely suggest you do your homework. A new guitarist might want to take along a friend who knows more about what is out there, than going it alone.
Stay off the auction sites, and stay away from pawn shops. Take the time to go to your local music store, and talk to someone who works there. They are interested in having you coming back so they aren’t going to sell you a piece of junk just to make a commission. You can a get a bit more guitar for your money by going used, but you are taking a risk. Not everyone is good about taking care of their stuff. Stay away from the obviously used and abused.
Be ready to pull the trigger on a used guitar when you find it since there is no guarantee that it will be there the next time you go back. Be smart and you just might get a really good deal.
Last Words The under $500 models are really good with plenty to crow about. You can get an instrument that sounds fantastic, looks great, and has all the bells and whistles you want without breaking the bank. The premium models have not changed much over the years, but this mid-range group is having a revolution of quality and tone. The winners are us, the guitar buying public. You can even look into getting , but remember you will have to think about an amp, cables, and possibly pedals.
Take your time, look through our list, figure out what works for you, then go and buy the right guitar for you. Just remember guitars are like potato chips, you can’t have just one. We are your new best friend when it comes to guitars, gear, lessons and everything else that goes with the greatest musical instrument in the world!
Choosing a guitar and learning how to play can be overwhelming. Our expert team will guide you with gear reviews, lessons and advice to help make your guitar life a little easier and more enjoyable. Guitarists, welcome home.
Last Updated: Nov-18-2018 Where do we start… this mega article has received a mega refresh! We upgraded the article by answering some common questions that get asked often by email. A lot had changed since the last update, so we removed older models that may have fallen out of production or became hard to find, and added many more – as well as a few new sections. A couple of new guitars that made their way onto this list include the excellent beginner-friendly along with the affordable and , while our premium sections saw the addition of the , the , and the among others.
We added the cool to our section for small-handed players, while both the higher-end and arrived in the new 12-String category. Check out the rest below! If you’re looking for a new acoustic guitar, it’ll quickly become apparent that the term ‘best’ is pretty broad.
Let’s break it down. Table Of Contents • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • First, you have so many different types music – flamenco, jazz, country, blues, classical, rock and pop, to name just a few.
Then you have musicians performing at different levels – there are the beginners who’ve never held a guitar before, there are experienced guitarists playing in bands, then there are professional guitarists, who make a career out of playing the guitar. You then have different budgets – one shopper may only have $100 in their back pocket while his friend can drop $2,000 on his new axe (lucky guy!).
There are also shoppers who know nothing about guitar at all – the caring girlfriend looking for a budget acoustic for the man of her life; the father who doesn’t really care what he spends, as long as his son gets . Of course there are more examples, but this brief introduction highlights how buying a guitar differs from person to person, and what is ‘best’ for one, may not be the ‘best’ for another. How Do I Find My Dream Acoustic Guitar?
A good question! As we’ve just explained, for every individual ‘the best acoustic guitar’ will be different. This is why we’ve split some of the top guitars on the market into relevant categories. You’ll find it easier to navigate to the category that interests you the most, bypassing those guitars out of your budget or too basic.
Before we get started, if you are in the market for an electric guitar instead of an acoustic, don’t worry – we have them covered in our extensive page elsewhere on Guitar Fella.
The same goes for nylon-stringed acoustics – you will no longer find them on this page because we have a new chart dedicated solely to . Top 10 Best Acoustic Guitars: Image Acoustic Guitar / Rating Summary Check Price Total of 4.85/5 Outstanding model by Seagull. Worth every penny. Total of 4.75/5 An awesome all-solid-wood Martin dreadnought, made in America.
Total of 4.78/5 Vintage tone and style to spare with this high-end Takamine. Total of 4.88/5 Beautiful style, quality and playability with this Seagull. Total of 4.60/5 A proud representative from the Takamine family. Total of 4.75/5 Premium American-made Breedlove that’s hard to put down! Total of 4.75/5 FG800 shows what made Yamaha's FG series so legendary to begin with. Total of 4.50/5 Great looking dreadnaught body guitar from Bristol.
Total of 4.82/5 A mid-range performance-focused acoustic with a high-end feel. Total of 4.83/5 A must-have acoustic for vintage enthusiasts. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: As we move into more premium territory, there’s no better guitar to start this category than Seagull’s popular Mosaic, which exudes quality at a big but fair price. With a delightful dreadnought shape, this steel-string acoustic is made with a pressure-tested solid cedar top, with solid mahogany back and sides, all with a semi-gloss custom polished finish that allows the guitar to sing – and sing it does!
The tonewoods combine to deliver a rich and bright sounding instrument, with plenty of warmth that would please the most demanding of guitarists. The Canadian craftsmanship on offer is excellent and everything from the distinctive tapered headstock to the seagull inlay on the 12th fret of the rosewood fretboard feels considered and well-made. . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: No surprise to see Martin making waves in the higher-end market – it’s where the brand excels.
The D-16RGT is a solely acoustic experience, with no electronics. However, the hardware, design and style you get for your cash still makes this dreadnought feel like a very good buy. This all-solid-wood model sports a Sitka spruce top with East Indian rosewood used for the back and sides. The build quality is impeccable, which is no less than you’d expect from an American-made Martin. The tone is equally as impressive, remining well-balanced and warm, with a bold projection.
Of course, it comes packed in an excellent Martin hardshell case. Be sure to read the for all the details. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Innovation, tone and a touch of vintage is what’s on offer with this delightful high-end Takamine electro-acoustic. As we discuss further in the , the Japanese brand includes a solid spruce top treated with its Thermal Top aging process.
Here, the wood is baked at a high heat, opening it up for a full and distinctive vintage tone. This warm tone is naturally replicated through an amplifier thanks to the on-board electronics featuring Takamine’s Palathetic pickup and TLD-2 line driver preamp.
In fact, the whole experience feels very premium, with appropriate vintage appointments and a fast-playing mahogany neck, with an ebony fretboard and 20 frets. It also comes with a nice hardshell case. Excellent!
Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: We start with a true classic, that’s equally as good for experienced players as it is beginners who are learning the guitar for the first time – the Seagull S6. It’s a good-looking steel-string acoustic that’s popular with guitarists of all abilities, due to its comfort, playability and sound quality.
The S6 – as we state in – sports an attractive solid cedar top with wild cherry back and sides. There’s a hand-finished, fat silver leaf maple neck, with a good rosewood fretboard and 21 frets, as well as a distinctive tapered headstock.
The sound is lovely – excellent projection and very dynamic with a good mid-range. It’s certainly not a budget option, but it’s still very affordable and will accompany you for decades of playing. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: is a dreadnaught style steel string acoustic. It has a solid spruce top with rosewood sides. The back is really special with a three piece rosewood-quilted maple-rosewood design. The looks are helped further along with abalone fret markers, rosewood headcap, maple purfling, gold hardware, and a dark wood rosette.
The neck is mahogany with a rosewood fingerboard. Takamine’s split saddle design is also incorporated into this guitar helping it to maintain its intonation.
The tone is bright with plenty of string definition. The slim neck profile is comfortable and fast. This is a great guitar for playing country style licks or strumming lush chords along with the rest of the band. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Packed with Breedlove’s renown flair and a bold tone, it’s no wonder the Oregon Concert CE makes this chart. This higher-end electro-acoustic is made in America, and the quality shows!
It features a comfortable cutaway concert body, comprising a solid Sitka spruce top and the striking addition of Myrtlewood on the back and sides, all enhanced with black body binding. For such an appealing body, the hard rock maple neck is one of the highlights, with a semi-gloss finish that feels beautiful in the hands.
This model is fitted with L. R. Baggs electronics for great-quality sound replication, although its bright tone is just wonderful unplugged.
The full review has everything you need to know about the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Yamaha’s FG800 is a staple of the legendary FG series, which has been a force in the affordable acoustic market for fifty years. The FG800 – as we detail in – is an excellent guitar for beginners at a super affordable price, with some advanced features that make it sound wonderful. It comes in Sand Burst and Vintage Tint finishes, although you can’t beat the simple and elegant classic natural finish.
It also shows off the solid Sitka spruce top, which is scallop-braced, with nato back and sides, and a slim nato neck (with rosewood fretboard) that makes playing a breeze. It sounds great, and the bracing on the top gives a good amount of bass depth and resonance. An excellent choice for beginners. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Guitarists looking for a vintage guitar with a premium feel would be wise to check out this pre-war inspired Herringbone dreadnought from Saga’s Blueridge, which has sound and style in abundance.
The steel-string beauty is crafted from solid Sitka spruce on the top, which features solid Indian rosewood back and sides, and a slim mahogany neck and rosewood fretboard. You’ll notice some impressive decoration on the BR-160 (), including an exclusive Dalmatian-style tortoiseshell pickguard, accurate 14:1 butterbean-style tuners, and an elaborately decorated motherof-pearl headstock.
The sound is to die for – a rich, traditional tone with great balance and robust projection. Hard to fault this superb offering from Blueridge, which comes in at a very good price. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Yamaha’s A Series puts the focus on performance, and their A3M – a key part of this cool range – certainly feels built to play.
This mid-range acoustic features a dreadnought body made from solid wood – Sitka spruce on the top, and mahogany on the back and sides. This features Yamaha’s A.R.E. treatment, for enhanced ‘opened up’ tone, which means the guitar sounds full and rich straight from the box.
The mahogany neck is a joy to play, with hand-rolled fretboard edges to deliver a beautiful feel. Adding extra value is the inclusion of Yamaha’s S.R.T. system, offering both mic and piezo pickups, for an all-round versatile instrument that’s perfect for the stage. There’s more on the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: If you’re into vintage style and tone, but want it at a price that won’t completely ruin you, the D’Angelico EX-63 is one to check out.
Based on the last guitar ever made by master luthier John D’Angelico, this acoustic reissue is oozing with retro beauty. It features a traditional non-cutaway archtop body, with laminated flamed maple on the back and sides, capped with a spruce top. While it’s vintage in style, the playability still feels modern, with a comfortable slim C-shaped maple neck. Vintage appointments include mother-of-pearl block inlays, the signature raised tortoise Scalini pickguard, and ‘Stairstep’ tailpiece.
A quality instrument and a class act – as we highlight in the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Although there are certainly much cheaper beginner acoustics (and, if that’s what you’re looking for, check out the dedicated beginner’s page), it’s hard to beat learning on a real Taylor. This affordable Taylor – part of the iconic brand’s Academy Series – shows off the typical quality you’d expect, along with good looks and beautiful playability. With a 24.87” scale length it features a Grand Concert body, with solid Sitka spruce on the top and a sapele laminate on the back and sides.
This body also features an ergonomic arm rest for extra comfort. Highlighted in the , the guitar comes fitted with simple but effective electronics, and an awesome Taylor padded gig bag. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: As far as acoustic guitars for beginners go, unless you want to spend a considerable amount more on a Taylor, the FG830 from Yamaha is a great choice.
This popular dreadnought remains one of the best-selling acoustics on the market – and for good reason. It’s an affordable factory-produced guitar, but after a good setup it can play like butter. It features a solid spruce top with an advanced scalloped bracing system, balanced with laminated rosewood back and sides. Combined, this delivers a bright and articulate tone with a bold projection, which beginners will very much enjoy. Equally as much as the sleek matte-finished nato neck – great for first chords, notes and songs.
There’s more on the ! Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: When you’re just starting out, chances are you don’t want to spend more than a hundred bucks on a guitar, especially if you aren’t committing to learning. Enter, the Rogue RA-090, which is a superb choice for beginners on a budget. For no more than the price of dinner for two, the RA-090 offers decent quality in its large dreadnought body, which is made entirely of laminated whitewood to keep the cost down.
It looks good and the 20-fret nato neck plays well. There are no electronics, which is great to keep things simple for beginners, while the hardware is quite reliable considering the price.
Check out the review for all you need to know! Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Packed with Breedlove’s renown flair and a bold tone, it’s no wonder the Oregon Concert CE makes this chart. This higher-end electro-acoustic is made in America, and the quality shows! It features a comfortable cutaway concert body, comprising a solid Sitka spruce top and the striking addition of Myrtlewood on the back and sides, all enhanced with black body binding.
For such an appealing body, the hard rock maple neck is one of the highlights, with a semi-gloss finish that feels beautiful in the hands. This model is fitted with L. R. Baggs electronics for great-quality sound replication, although its bright tone is just wonderful unplugged. The full review has everything you need to know about the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: If a bold vintage look and a big vintage sound gets you excited, the beautiful Art Deco-inspired BG-2500 from Blueridge will be right up your street.
Taking inspiration from the historic Gibson J200, this high-end model sports a jumbo 21” body made from quality woods, with a fit and finish that ensures the BG-2500 feels worth the hefty sum of cash. There’s a solid Sitka spruce on the top and AAAA-grade solid maple on the back and sides. It also has an ebony-reinforced flamed maple neck, with a 20-fret ebony fretboard featuring gorgeous white pearl inlays.
It looks great and sounds just as good, with a hauntingly beautiful rich vintage tone. There’s more on the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Of course, this page wouldn’t be complete without an all-solid-wood made-in-America Taylor! We’ve , which feels like a true premium guitar. With a 25.5” scale length, the 314ce features a Grand Auditorium body shape with a playability-enhancing Venetian cutaway, allowing good access to the highest of the 20 frets. The top of the body is made from solid Sitka spruce, along with solid sapele back and sides, leading to a beautifully rich and powerful tone that’s well balanced between warm and bright.
The neck is hugely playable, with a satin-finished tropical mahogany construction. This model is an electro-acoustic, fitted with Taylor’s Expression System 2 including the brand’s patented behind-the-saddle pickup. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: It’s not one of Takamine’s premium models, but give it a few strums and you can see why Bruce Springsteen uses this awesome EF341SC on stage! Part of Takamine’s Legacy Series, the glossy black EF341SC is an elegant guitar with a good dose of rock attitude.
It sports a cutaway dreadnought body for excellent upper-fret access, with solid cedar used on the top, and laminated maple on the back and sides. Adding to the playability is the C-shaped 20-fret mahogany neck. Built into the top is Takamine’s own CT-4B II preamp system, with 3-band EQ and a built-in chromatic tuner. Unplugged, the tone is warm and balanced, while it sounds top notch through the electronics.
Check out more in our . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Part of Martin’s mid-range 15 Series, the popular D-15M is an all-solid-wood, all-mahogany acoustic which proves the perfect companion for the stage, recording, or simply chilling out with a sweet guitar.
With a non-cutaway dreadnought body shape, the D-15M shows off typical Martin elegance and just as much Martin playability. Just like the body, the neck is also made of satin-finished mahogany, capped with an East Indian rosewood fretboard, and 20 frets.
There’s no electronics on this model, but – as we mention in the – this acoustic is fitted with reliable hardware that complements the guitar’s consistency, while the tone on offer is naturally rich and warm. Hard to fault, even at this higher-end price. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Taylor offers a diverse range of woods and styles in its 200 Deluxe Series, although it’s the delightful 224ce-K that shines the brightest to us. Its dark aesthetics are down to the all-Hawaiian Koa construction with a solid top paired with laminate back and sides.
As we mention in the , it sports a Grand Auditorium shape and a Venetian cutaway, which makes reaching all 20 frets of the satin-finished neck a much easier task. With the Koa construction it has a naturally bright tone that will warm up with age, while the Expression System 2 electronics (featuring 3-band EQ and phase filter) make on-stage performances a strong point of this acoustic. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Dollar for dollar, Breedlove’s Solo Concert is perhaps one of the best acoustic guitars on this entire list – even though it’s missing a piece on the side of the body!
The missing piece is, of course, deliberate, with Breedlove offering players a second soundhole, allowing you to hear the same output as the audience. The top is made of solid red cedar, while the back and sides are crafted from laminated rosewood. Combined, this delivers a rich and warm tone that’s well-replicated though the versatile L. R. Baggs undersaddle pickup and preamp system (including 3-band EQ controls and a built-in tuner).
Breedlove – consider us impressed! Read more about the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Made in Canada, the Maritime SWS SG is a real beauty and instantly recognizable as a Seagull, thanks to that familiar headstock.
Part of the brand’s Solid Wood Series, this model sports a pressure-tested solid spruce top with solid mahogany back and sides, all with a resonation-enhancing high-gloss Custom Polished Finish. The result is a nicely balanced guitar in tone which offers a big projection. It’s a pleasure to play too, with a mahogany neck and rosewood fretboard, featuring 21 frets (it’s joined at the 14th). It also comes fitted with quality chrome tuners and a rosewood bridge.
Honestly, to see such a well-made all-solid-wood acoustic in this price range is a great find! Check out more on the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: While slightly lower-end than some of the other Taylors we feature on this page, the 114ce from the brand’s affordable 100 Series is a great performer for all abilities and styles.
It features a handsome Grand Auditorium shape with a soft cutaway for good access to the higher frets, while the satin-finished sapele neck is incredibly playable – as is the case with all Taylor guitars. The iconic brand keeps costs low with laminated sapele back and sides paired with solid Sitka spruce on the top, as well as producing it in the respected Mexican facility.
Throw in the Taylor Expression System 2, chrome tuners, and a padded Taylor gig bag, and you have one excellent package – as we mention in the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Yamaha’s LS6 is another acoustic that’s a favorite of ours, as it offers excellent value considering the style, build and hardware you receive.
Part of the famous Japanese brand’s L Series (the L standing for ‘luxury’), the LS6 really does feature a luxurious feel for the sub-$500 price tag. With an elegantly designed concert body made from A.R.E-treated solid Engelmann spruce on the top, with laminated rosewood back and sides. This combines to deliver a rich tone that sounds like something you’d receive in a much higher price bracket.
You can also amplify this sound through the stealthy S.R.T. Zero Impact pickup. Interested? Further details on the wonderful LS6 are available in the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Ibanez’s striking AEW40ZW blows away many other guitars in the sub-$500 price range thanks to its use of beautiful exotic zebrawood on the top, back and sides.
The electro-acoustic features a distinctive jumbo body shape, with a soft Florentine cutaway which allows good access to the 20 frets of the rosewood fretboard. This all sits on a satin-finished C-shaped mahogany neck. The AEW40ZW also features the Ibanez-designed AEQ-SP2 preamp, along with a good quality Fishman Sonicore pickup. A simple but versatile system, that includes volume and 2-band EQ controls, a built-in digital tuner, and both Balanced XLR and 1/4” outputs.
A bright but well-balanced sound. Be sure to check out the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Here we have a real icon, re-imagined for the affordable acoustic market. With a design that’s true to the original Gibson Hummingbird, Epiphone’s Hummingbird PRO electro-acoustic features a dreadnought body with 1960s square shoulders, a solid spruce top, and laminated select mahogany back and sides.
Vintage detailing includes classic pearloid parallelogram inlays and the elaborate Hummingbird pickguard. Joined at the 14th fret, the SlimTaper D-shaped neck is also mahogany, with a rosewood fretboard and 20 frets. As we detail in our , it includes a Shadow ePerformer preamp system with NanoFlex under-saddle pickup, allowing the naturally rich sound to be amplified and shaped thanks to the versatile controls.
A great choice for blues or rock guitarists. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: As far as acoustic guitars for beginners go, unless you want to spend a considerable amount more on a Taylor, the FG830 from Yamaha is a great choice. This popular dreadnought remains one of the best-selling acoustics on the market – and for good reason. It’s an affordable factory-produced guitar, but after a good setup it can play like butter. It features a solid spruce top with an advanced scalloped bracing system, balanced with laminated rosewood back and sides.
Combined, this delivers a bright and articulate tone with a bold projection, which beginners will very much enjoy. Equally as much as the sleek matte-finished nato neck – great for first chords, notes and songs. There’s more on the ! Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: The Oregon-based brand makes several appearances in this mega chart for one reason – their models are incredibly recommendable, whatever the price category.
And, in the sub-$300 market, the Discovery Concert shines brightly. To keep costs low, the Discovery Series is made in China, but set-up in the US, so it feels great right out of the box. The Concert Discovery is also attractive and built with quality materials – there’s solid Sitka spruce on the top, with laminated mahogany back and sides.
It also comes with a rosewood fretboard and 20 frets, sealed chrome tuners, a pinless rosewood bridge and a padded Breedlove gig bag. Not a bad haul considering the all-round affordable price. There’s more on the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Alvarez is a brand up there with the best when it comes to making a great guitar that doesn’t cost the earth. And it’s their solid-topped AF30 – a staple of the Artist Series – that stands out in the sub-$300 category, showing off great style and quality for the affordable price.
It features a compact folk body, built with solid Sitka spruce on the top and laminated mahogany on the back and sides. The smooth mahogany neck is easy to play, while the guitar offers a beautiful mellow tone that suits all styles of guitarist, and is great for accompanying a vocalist.
As we mention further in the , there are no electronics, but the hardware makes for a consistent and reliable experience.
Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: We shall start this budget category with a hugely affordable steel-string model, that gives guitars twice the price something to think about. From Takamine’s budget subsidiary Jasmine, – features the classic dreadnought shape body, with an advanced X-braced spruce top, along with agathis back and sides.
It also sports a slim nato neck – joined at the 14th fret – with a rosewood fretboard and 20 frets, and a rosewood bridge. Overall, it offers good clarity and provides lots of projection, thanks to both the natural finish (allowing the wood to resonate) and the bracing on the top. More than suitable for beginners, who would find plenty of use with this guitar. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: If you think cheap can’t mean quality, think again – Epiphone’s budget PRO-1 acoustic is out to prove you wrong!
Loaded with innovative hardware, it makes playing simple for both beginners and experienced players alike. This full-sized dreadnought sports a laminated select spruce top with laminated select mahogany back and sides, and comes in several color choices. There’s an EZ-Profile C-shape mahogany neck with a very slick rosewood fretboard, and 20 JumboPRO frets, which all adds up to a comfortable and easy-playing instrument. The guitar also includes a rosewood bridge and tuners with a precise 18:1 gear ratio, as well as a humidifier to help condition the instrument.
Our has everything you need to know about this great-value acoustic. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: There are few better names in the world of guitar than Fender, and their steel-string FA-100 shows they can pack a punch in the budget acoustic market.
It offers a simple but stylish look with a traditional dreadnought body shape that appeals to any guitarist. The top is made from spruce and features X-bracing, while the back and sides are made from basswood. The FA-100 also sports a very playable maple neck, with a rosewood fretboard and 20 frets. It would work very well for beginners, as it provides a defined, crisp sound that’s well suited to plucking or strumming, and good for everything from rock to country. Throw in a classic Fender-branded headstock and a limited lifetime warranty, and you have a very attractive package for the low price.
Don’t miss our . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: If you accept that you’re not going to get the kind of booming projection you’d expect from a fullsized Martin, this cute 24” scale-length steel-string Backpacker will impress, and is perfect for playing on the road (or on a plane, in a boat, and anywhere else you can think of!). For such an affordable price you’ll find a good solid Sitka spruce top, with undefined tonewood back and sides, and a good Richlite fretboard with 15 frets. It’s lightweight but durable, and comfortable to hold and play on.
The sound – while quieter than a full size guitar – is surprisingly full of tone. Close your eyes and you may struggle to tell the difference between this and a mid-range full-sized guitar!
Check out our . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: One of our favorite small-hand friendly acoustics is the Baby Taylor BT2 – a mini dreadnought that punches above its relatively affordable price tag with a hefty tone and beautiful overall feel. It features a solid mahogany top with laminated sapele back and sides, leading to a warm tone that’s a joy to listen too.
Despite the small body size, the BT2 has a robust projection, thanks to the arched back. The neck is joined to the body via screws, which tarnish the look a little, but leave no impact on the slick playability or the tone, so aren’t a big deal. It also comes with a stylish, protective padded Taylor gig bag.
There’s more on the . Check it out! Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Coming in at the higher-end of our travel acoustic chart, Yamaha’s SLG200S Silent is a masterpiece in its own right – innovative and portable, without losing the full-size playing experience. With no traditional body on offer, this steel-string electro-acoustic uses a detachable maple and rosewood frame to keep it travel-friendly, while a solid mahogany body gives it substance and tone.
It also features a satin-finished mahogany neck with a rosewood fretboard and 22 frets. We talk about the electronics of the – without its SRT Powered preamp system and undersaddle pickup it wouldn’t be very audible! This system features a built-in headphone socket and versatile controls, including volume and EQ, as well as a built-in effects rotary control.
Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: The legendary American brand rarely put a foot wrong, and they certainly don’t do it in the electro-acoustic market – as the DRS1 shows.
This all-solid-wood dreadnought – part of the brand’s Road Series – packs a real punch when it comes to tone, with a big projection and great warmth. This is largely down to the expert construction and the use of satin-finished solid sapele on the top, back and sides. As for design, it’s a straightforward but elegant model, with simplicity that all guitarists can appreciate.
Highlighted in the , it comes loaded with an excellent and very stealthy Fishman Sonitone system. Throw in chrome die-cast tuners, solid hardware, and a hardshell case, and you get good return for your cash. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Part of Paul Reed Smith’s famous Angelus Series, the A50E is a stylish electro-acoustic that’s new for 2018, although could quickly become a modern classic.
With a mid-range price, the A50E sports a 25.3” scale length Angelus body shape, crafted with figured maple (back and sides) and solid Sitka spruce (top).
This quality wood is complemented with the elegant detailing we’ve become used to with the Angelus series, such as the distinctive abalone bird fretboard inlays, with matching abalone rosette and purfling.
As we highlight in the full A50E review, this snazzy electro-acoustic is loaded a simple but effective Fishman GT1 preamp system, offering natural replication of the guitar’s bright, articulate acoustic tone. A winner from PRS! Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: You can always rely on Epiphone to provide an acoustic guitar with eye-catching looks and a quality sound at an excellent price, and the EJ-200CE is certainly a testament to this. Based on one of the world’s most famous guitars, the J-200 (introduced in 1937), this revamped model offers an excellent mix of vintage style and modern components, perfect for any level of skill.
Epiphone have crafted the single-cutaway body from solid spruce on the top, and a select maple back and sides, not forgetting a maple neck with well-decorated rosewood fretboard, and rosewood ‘mustache’ bridge. The acoustic sound output is clear with good projection, while plugged in to an the eSonic pickup system – with built-in tuner – also impresses for the price.
Make sure to . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: One of our favorite small-hand friendly acoustics is the Baby Taylor BT2 – a mini dreadnought that punches above its relatively affordable price tag with a hefty tone and beautiful overall feel. It features a solid mahogany top with laminated sapele back and sides, leading to a warm tone that’s a joy to listen too.
Despite the small body size, the BT2 has a robust projection, thanks to the arched back. The neck is joined to the body via screws, which tarnish the look a little, but leave no impact on the slick playability or the tone, so aren’t a big deal. It also comes with a stylish, protective padded Taylor gig bag. There’s more on the . Check it out! Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: If you want to make a tad bigger investment and get one of the best acoustic guitars in the world within the “under $500” league that just happens to be very well suited for children too, check out the Little Martin.
Martin is one of the most renowned guitar manufacturers in the world, and we would be lying if we said that this six-sting didn’t have the absolute best sound on this entire list. Utilizing high-quality wood and stellar craftsmanship, this is the guitar that brought the manufacturer’s sonic excellence to players on a budget. It’s compact, it’s strong, and it can tackle any musical style that you can think of. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Another great little guitar for players with smaller hands – with an equally small price tag!
The Fender MA-1 is a 23.3” scale length small-bodied steel-string with a small hand-friendly C-shaped neck made from nato. This is attached at the 12th fret to the body, which sports a clean, timeless style, with laminated agathis on the top and laminated sapele on the back and sides.
Considering the affordable price, the tone isn’t bad at all, even though it is a little quiet due to the smaller body. The hardware it comes with is all pretty consistent, and leads to a reliable guitar that’s excellent for travelling, kids or adults with smaller hands.
Check out everything on the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: The innovative Japanese brand manage to consistently deliver on innovation, quality and versatility, which is why we regard them so highly. It’s also why their EF381SC 12-string guitar is first in this category.
This reliable electro-acoustic is perfect for the modern stage performer, utilizing Takamine’s CT4B II electronics that offer both versatile onboard EQ controls and a natural replication of this acoustic’s bright, twinkly tone. This tone is largely down to the quality of the materials used in the construction – a solid spruce top, with maple back and sides, all with a sophisticated black finish.
As we mention in the , this 12-string model is an all-round beautiful workhorse, well worth the price tag. Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: If you’re after a gigantic 12-string sound, the Guild F1512E is an electro-acoustic worth checking out.
Guild’s reputation as one of the best acoustic brands is upheld with this impressive model, that proves well worth its higher-end price tag. With a jumbo body shape, the F1512E sports a solid Sitka spruce top, with rosewood back and sides, combining for a well-balanced tone with good warmth.
Of course, it also has huge projection and you barely need electronics to amplify it further! Still, the option is there, with Fishman’s Sonitone pickup included, along with generally reliable hardware and a smart Guild polyfoam case. There’s more on this impressive 12-string in the . Body And Neck: Hardware: Sound: Value: Yet another Martin on this mega chart, but are you really surprised? The brand is at the top of their game, as they have been since 1833 and – with guitars such as the D12X1AE – it doesn’t look like anything is about to change.
For a Martin in particular, this 12-string dreadnought is reasonably affordable, but still displays the traditional design and build that make Martin such a big name. It sports a mix of solid and laminate woods, with Sitka spruce on the top and the rest made up of rosewood HPL. As we mention in the , it also comes fitted with a Fishman Sonitone pickup and reliable hardware for consistent live performances.
Acoustic or Electro-Acoustic – What’s Better? While reading through you will have seen both acoustic guitars as well as acoustics with a pickup/pre-amp system, and – especially if you’re starting out – you may have asked ‘which is better for me?’ However, like everything else in the world of guitar, the answer is completely down to you, your tastes and ambitions.
An electro-acoustic guitar is one that works just like a regular acoustic would, although has the added benefit of having a pickup, allowing you to plug the guitar into an amplifier and cranking up the volume, playing with a band, or – by using – adding an array of tones and effects to your sound.
Due to the extra components and work involved in making it, an electro-acoustic version of a guitar will usually be more expensive than it’s acoustic brother, although you can find very affordable electro-acoustic models these days.
Just keep in mind that you will need to buy an amplifier to benefit from the perks of your new electro-acoustic. Make sure to check out our detailed page that covers more than 60 of for a little inspiration. Whether or not you go for an electro-acoustic model may depend on where you plan to play it. If you are playing a concert or on stage with a band you will need something that is capable of being plugged into an amp, or risk not being heard!
Should You Go Nylon or Steel? This is as important – if not more – than the question above, and must be answered before you buy, or even start looking for your next guitar. Generally it’s agreed that beginners may benefit more from using a nylon-string instrument as it’s less intense on the fingers, and may encourage longer playing sessions.
However it’s not essential, and starting on a steel-string guitar may keep you playing longer if you prefer that style of music. But if you enjoy the smooth, mellow sound of classical guitar music or the excitement of flamenco, go for a . If you prefer rock, country, blues or folk, you’d be better off checking out steel-string guitars, which offer that crisp, bright sound. Whatever you go for, ensure you try out as many as you can – or at the very least watch a few review videos – to determine what sound and style you prefer.
Who knows, you may decide nylonstrings are for you when you didn’t initially consider them. A final word of advice when changing your acoustic strings (and don’t forget to check out our page on ): you cannot use steel strings on a nylon-stringed guitar, and vice versa.
This experiment has no benefit, it won’t be very successful, and can cause big damage to your guitar. Besides, there’s no reason you can’t own both nylon and steel-stringed models – with guitars so affordable these days, everyone can own every style!
And if you are into experimenting you can check out – but this is different topic and I don’t want to go into details. What is a Good Acoustic Guitar? As quality, styles and price differ so greatly, it is difficult to settle on one definition of a good acoustic guitar. For example, a $2,500 Martin D-18 is a much better guitar than a $200 Yamaha FG800 – yet they are both still great guitars! That’s because all guitars we tend to class as ‘good’ share some qualities.
One of these is playability. The guitar should feel nice to play with a smooth neck, regardless of whether it is glossy or satin-finished. The action should be low, although not too low that the frets buzz. Whether it costs $100 or $1000, the build quality should feel worthy of the money. Naturally with budget models you will find more laminated woods compared the solid woods and exotic materials used in expensive guitars.
However, a good model will have laminates that are put together securely and cleanly, with no excess glue or rough spots. Even a good budget guitar will look and feel great.
A good guitar’s components will work smoothly too. For example, the tuning keys should turn freely (not too loose, not too stiff) and hold tunings well, and – if it offers electronics – these should be reliable. How Much Does a Good Acoustic Guitar Cost? Again, it completely depends on your definition of good – it is a very loose term!
As you will have seen in the chart, we rate both budget and higher-end models very highly. For a good beginner’s guitar, you should look to pay between $150 and $250, as this will land you with a model that will deliver a clear tone with good playability, which should encourage you to pick it up and play all the time. However, most players referring to a ‘good’ guitar will be talking about one that would suit a more experienced player – something that is good enough for home use as well as being a stage-worthy instrument.
This kind of acoustic may not be classed as a ‘high-end’ or ‘premium’ model, but it will usually feature a solid wood top, an attractive design, an excellent build quality (even though it will still be mass produced) and solid components.
For this kind of guitar, you will be looking in the $300 to $600 price ranges. Which Brand of Acoustic Guitar is The Best? The two classic acoustic brands seen as ‘’ are undoubtedly Martin and Taylor. These two have been around since 1833 and 1974 respectively, so have good experience in producing some of the finest acoustic guitars on the planet. While not always the most elaborately decorated, these two brands always deliver the wow-factor.
Tell another guitarist that you own a Martin and they will know you are serious about guitar. However, a couple of other brands also make some excellent acoustics and should not be ignored.
For example, the Canadian brand Seagull make a range of some of the most popular acoustic guitars around. Then there is the Oregon-based brand Breedlove, who handcraft some superb acoustics, while the Japanese manufacturer Takamine are well-known for the high-end all-solid-wood electro-acoustics.
If you aren’t in the market for a premium model, brands such as Yamaha and Fender always seem to impress in all levels of the pricing scale, especially with their entry-level and affordable acoustics. The Final Word While there are plenty of poor quality guitars on the market, every model and manufacturer we have featured here is worthy of your time.
Although don’t forget that the guitars on this page are only a drop in the ocean of what is out there in terms of choice. Ultimately, make sure to go with what you feel is best for you, whether small budget or big spending, acoustic or electro-acoustic, steel or nylon strings. If you are passionate about what you are doing, and keep learning and practicing, every guitar will sound great in your hands. And if you are just starting out, make sure to check out to help you get started. On every stage, at every concert, the audience always rates the player – not the instrument.
People would always listen to B.B. King and Jimi Hendrix – even if they were performing with a $100 Yamaha! Let that be some inspiration for you. Good luck with your guitar shopping and enjoy your new purchase! Cort 450c.
Totally agree with your eulogistic review. Bought it a couple of yeers ago from Amazon for £215. Didn’t expect much for that price. What I got was a fantastic little guitar which is by far my favorite and most played of several guitars, including a Martin and a Fender. All praise to the wonderful people at Cort. You don’t have a single Guild in your list, but you have Washburns that totally lack any sort of bass response.
In fact, I’ve never understood how Washburn could take perfectly good materials like sitka spruce and mahogany, and produce such inferior guitars. You list the Fender fa-100 and stratacoustic, both firewood as far as I’m concerned, but don’t list the outstanding Alvarez AD60 and AD70, two amazing sounding guitars for the money.
The Hohner and Oscar Schmidt OG2 are beginner guitars, but I know a lot of people with Yamaha FG800 and FG830 guitars who would be very offended by you saying one of their favorite guitars is for beginners.
They are serious instruments, even if they only carry a sub-$300 price tag. They are certainly better sounding than that Taylor Big Baby thing, which I was shocked to hear at GC. Talk about over-rated. But you did get many things right.
You gave the Blueridge d160 high marks, though I think the D140 should have been up there, too. Good to see that you gave the FG800 such high marks, but I actually like the FS800 a little better. It’s easier to play and better for fingerpicking. The Ami, Jim Dandy, and Recording King are all over-rated and over-priced.
You need to take the Washburns down and put up the Guild M-120, D-120, and D-150. The D-150 may be the best guitar you can buy for under a grand.
Point(s) taken. Thanks Tom! I do agree that Guild deserves to be up there in the list! We will be refreshing our ranks for 2017 and you can expect them featured!
The FG800 and F830 are outstanding guitars, no doubt about it. It is just that their price makes them very appropriate and affordable for beginners. I think saying a guitar is ‘good for beginners’ is very different to saying ‘a beginner’s guitar’, and therefore shouldn’t offend anyone. At the end of the day, a $3000 Martin is probably very good for beginners, because it’ll play like butter.
So the fact that they say the FG800 and FG830 is good for beginners is actually a compliment! I wanna weigh in, I’m just an average player but having one of the best luthiers around and talking to them really gives you an idea of what quality your getting from a guitar. I play a martin DC 16gte, my singer plays a Chinese knock off Taylor.
No one can tell the difference when he switched to the real genuine 314 CE Taylor (basically made the same way as the Chinese one), and we get no complaints about either guitar. Save your money, (buy quality) or buy the Chinese knock off and find it’s made the same and it will make you the same money playing and feel just as good in your hand as the 1000 dollar plus Taylor. Conclusions for Taylor or martin fans is don’t go name brand cause they (known or unknown) swear by them, is all personal preference, try everything in every price range find what’s right for you.
My $750 DC 16gte Martin was right for me. My singer the 914ce Taylor Chinese knock off (327 bucks new) suits him better than his 1200 dollar original Taylor 314ce. i like ‘The Final Word’ statement, my first recording use Yamaha Shen-Shen FG-50 guitar (i don’t know that original production of Yamaha affiliate or not, but i feel the fingerboard bigger than standart), with electric guitar strings (9|42), etc, getting the course prior to learn more chord but jamming in the gig give more experiences….apologies me if there wrong word, best wishes I’ve played Martin D35 and O18 for decades and fooled around with Maton and Cole Clarke’s for a bit, but switched to James Goodall’s ( 6 and 12) which are simply stunning instruments.
Why they’re not mentioned here is a mystery to me – especially if it’s quality of woods and craft and tone you’re chasing. I love the Martin’s but Goodall stole my soul. We are your new best friend when it comes to guitars, gear, lessons and everything else that goes with the greatest musical instrument in the world! Choosing a guitar and learning how to play can be overwhelming.
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