So you’re an aspiring musician looking for the best acoustic guitar for beginners 2018. It’s a daunting task to do and you’re not alone. With hundreds, even thousands of guitars on the market to select from, choosing one is a crucial decision.
In this article, we will tackle about the Top 8 acoustic guitar for beginners. With the number of items you can purchase online, it would be easy to pick up something cheap only to be surprised it sounds like a toy and is entirely uncomfortable to hold.
Don’t worry, though. You don’t have to do the manual labor of browsing across multiple sites looking for the thing that can suit you best – we have done the job for you. After setting high standards and filtering out the best-sellers, we have come up with eight (8) acoustic guitars that can potentially be your best buddy in your musical endeavor.
Top 8 Best Acoustic Guitar for Beginners on the Market 2018
# Seagull S6 Original Acoustic Guitar
All the way from North America, the Seagull S6 Original Acoustic guitar is adorned with a solid cedar top with cherry back and sides. The fingerboard and bridge are composed of Rosewood. And it has a compensated saddle and a Tusq nut for improved intonation. Ultimately, the guitar is embellished with a semi-gloss lacquer finish.
The Seagull S6 is high on performance but kinda reasonable on cost, making it one of the best acoustic guitars for beginners. It has outstanding features and it’s hard to beat this one for the price – truly a good bargain for the money.
This is the guitar that you would want to recommend to beginners. It has good looks and possesses quality materials behind. You will really feel the warmth of domestic mahogany blended with maple essence. Strum the instrument, and you’ll hear the tone that complements the way it looks.
Importantly, the fretboard is quite easy on one’s finger, making it ideal for people who’ve just started to play the instrument.
• Solid cedar top; high-quality material
• Pressure-tested top for optimum response
• Superior tone and projection
• Stable and precise tuning – tapered headstock
• Perfect neck alignment
• Excellent audio
• Guaranteed good feel when playing
• Good looking
• Double-action truss road
• Few claims of bad packaging
# Yamaha FG830 Solid Top Acoustic Guitar
This one comes with the standard Sitka Spruce Top. Sitka Spruce is the most popular top material and you’ll know more about it under the buying guide section. The Yamaha FG830 is adorned with Rosewood back, sides, fingerboard, and bridge. You can expect high response rate from this one.
There is a single fundamental rule for any beginner who’s confused about what guitar to buy due to the nearly unlimited options available – buy from a reputable brand. In terms of well-established names, Yamaha is sure to be one of them. This brand seems to dominate the music industry (from pianos to acoustic instruments) and you’ll surely won’t regret buying one from them.
The Yamaha FG830 can sustain both rich lows and bright highs. The back is composed of rosewood which perfectly complements the spruce top. Together they make deep musical tones ideal for both personal and on-stage use.
Overall, the Yamaha FG830 acoustic guitar is one of the best acoustic guitars for beginners. The price is a great bargain as you’ll be getting a dreadnought guitar with premium quality materials. This makes a perfect companion for any starting artists out there like you.
• Guaranteed good audio
• Lots of color options to choose from
• Fun to play with
• Feels good to hold
• Consistent performance
• Stays in tune
• Ideal for small venues, jamming, practicing
• Minority issues on the string
# Yamaha FG830 Solid Top Folk Acoustic Guitar – Autumn Burst Bundle
Now this one’s typically the same with the preceding product and it also comes in an array of color options – but in a more attractive bundle. This Yamaha FG830, for instance, comes in an autumn-inspired color – a shade of golden orange slowly blending with a melancholic brownish ambiance.
What makes this product more attractive is it comes in a bundle. The package includes a hard case, strings, tuner, picks, strap, and even a polishing cloth. The best part is it comes with an Austin Bazaar Instructional DVD – a beginner’s guide to setting up your acoustic guitar, how to play chords, how to use accessories, and more! You only need to add a little cost from the previous model’s price and you’re already getting yourself all these freebies!
Overall, this Yamaha FG830 is the package you could ever need. It comes right with all the essentials needed to start your journey with music.
• Feels like you’re buying a limited edition
• Lots of color options to suit your style
• Comes with beginner’s How To DVD: a big plus!
• Stronger and louder sound in low to mid range
• New scalloped bracing pattern
• Perfect for young and guitar beginners
• Detailed quality; beautiful hand-sprayed finish
• Very few claims of lacking accessories
# Fender Tim Armstrong Hellcat Acoustic-Electric Guitar
Now we have our first acoustic-electric guitar. The Fender Tim Armstrong boasts a solid Mahogany top consistent with laminated back and sides of the same wood material. It comes with a distinct, vintage, dark color that will set you apart from most guitars in the market. Matter of fact, this one is literally special.
This is the brand’s tribute to the famous Tim Armstrong from the 60s acoustic era on which this Rancid front-man has made a huge impact on the punk generation. During his time, Tim Armstrong used an acoustic guitar that looks exactly like this model, hence the tribute to his name. It even has the two skulls on the 12th fret!
This Tim Armstrong Hellcat features a rosewood bridge with chrome die-cast tuning keys and compensated saddle. This iconic guitar packs a powerful punch that makes a good instrument not just for beginners but for the pros alike.
• Classic and vintage appeal
• Iconic, celebrity-tribute model
• Electric: can be used for large audiences
• Had a good price point
• Exclusive Fishman Isys III System
• Scalloped X Bracing
• Minor claims of fret buzz
# Fender CD-60S Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar
Another one from Fender, the CD-60S Dreadnought makes a good companion for beginners to intermediate musicians. This one comes in dominant black in a bundle that packs all essentials a beginner might need – hard shell case, strap, clip-on digital tuner, picks, strings, polishing cloth. Ultimately, it also has the Austin Bazaar Instructional DVD that will help you big time in learning your way to music.
High-quality spruce makes the top while mahogany comprises the back and sides of this dreadnought guitar. The sound it produces is as good as how it looks. Quality projection and resonance is brought by the scalloped X-bracing while steel strings make the instrument ideal for playing chords.
An impressive aspect is an acoustic-electric feature. You can use this guitar in live gigs where you need to connect the instrument to an amplifier so you can deliver the sound to the entire venue.
• The package is a complete bundle!
• Instructional DVD for beginners
• Stunning black finish with a black-n-white neck
• Pearl style acrylic design
• Ideal for beginners to intermediate players
• Strap kinda feels cheap
# Bristol BD-16 Dreadnaught Acoustic Guitar
The Bristol BD-16 Dreadnaught Acoustic Guitar offers high-end quality features that won’t necessarily break the bank. With premium craftsmanship, this guitar is an appealing choice for beginners who are looking for a good sound, action, and feel.
Spruce comprises its top while mahogany dominates the back, sides, and neck. You’ll surely love the natural high-gloss finish that makes the guitar more appealing. It has a 7 ply body binding composition that gives you a strong feeling with a sturdy essence that you can usually feel only on higher end guitars.
Another impressive attribute of this dreadnaught is being lightweight despite the fact it’s a dreadnought. The mahogany does its part in resonance by having a smooth, solid feel to it – it’s good and has proven a lot despite not being the prime choice for higher end guitars.
When it comes to actually playing it, the Bristol BD-16 is an instrument of wonder. It is spontaneously consistent – neither too low nor too high. You can also expect no fret buzz at all. Overall, the Bristol BD-16 Dreadnaught Acoustic Guitar is a great blend of substantial chords, clear notes, and quality sound packed in supreme materials.
• Full range sound from Spruce top
• Scalloped braces to enhance the sound
• Long-lasting stability
• Responsive tone; robust volume
• Precise; always in tune
• Silky smooth playability
• Few claims of being overpriced
# Yamaha FG800 Acoustic Guitar Solid Top
Now here’s something from Yamaha again – and it has a lot in store. For a slightly more price than the preceding guitar, this Yamaha is packed with a Know hardshell guitar case, stand, tuner, strings, picks, capo, and strap. This makes the product quite appealing and ideal for beginners.
The brand alone says it all. Yamaha is a big player in the industry and you can assure the quality of each product under its name. The Yamaha FG800 Acoustic Guitar is made with a Solid Sitka Spruce Top. Its most impressive attribute is the latest acoustic analysis technology that offers a new acoustic structure that retains top board durability while delivering the best sound possible.
Overall, the Yamaha FG800 is a standard acoustic guitar for beginners. It possesses a traditional design with high-quality sound, robust strength, and stronger low to mid ranges. The complete package is a big plus!
• Perfect for beginners
• Comes with a bundle for the same price
• The package is complete with all guitar essentials
• Traditional design for a good feel and familiarity
• New scalloped bracing pattern
• Cutting-edge acoustic structure
• Minor customer service issues
# Yamaha FG800 Acoustic Guitar – Black Bundle
A lot of people love black because there is something in that color that simply catches the eye. It looks premium, elegant, and high-end. So if you’re an aspiring musician who tends to like black, there is a point of intersection where your interests meet.
The Yamaha FG800 Acoustic Guitar is a black bundle complete with its own bag, additional strings, tuner, picks, strap, polishing cloth, and an Austin Bazaar Instructional DVD. Now you can start playing right out of the box!
You can expect smooth and comfortable standard neck. The top itself is a gem – made of solid Sitka Spruce that gives a great sound that doesn’t disappoint at all.
This one is fairly less expensive than other bundles featured in this post. And despite the beginner’s bundle, this acoustic guitar can also do well with advanced players.
Overall, the Yamaha FG800 is for beginners (and advanced players alike) who are looking for a bang for the buck. Sound quality, price point, and the freebies included are all attributes this guitar has to offer.
• Comes in stunning, shiny black
• Great deal; reliable brand
• Durable top board
• Scalloped bracing
• Affordable but doesn’t sound cheap at all
• Mellow and well-balanced
• Dreadnought shape makes sound warm
• Extra strings may be Fender 80/20 lights
Best Acoustic Guitar for Beginners Buying Guide
Your guitar’s tonewood is its sonic signature. This refers to the variety of wood used as the material for a particular acoustic stringed instrument. Each type has their own tonal properties, giving you a range of choices for your specific preference.
The wood material for the top is basically the most important factor you should consider when buying your first guitar. It’s the sole element that dictates how your guitar will sound.
After choosing the top material; what comes next is the back, sides, and neck. You should also know the material can only be as good as the maker and designer of the instrument. Here are the best tonewood materials you can choose:
This is the standard top material where Sitka is the most used species. Spruce is known to naturally cater high velocity of sound due to its lightweight properties and robust rigidity.
Sitka spruce can retain outstanding clarity even when you play it forcefully courtesy of its powerful direct tone capability.
The primary properties of Mahogany include low overtone content, considerable density, and a fairly lower response rate than other top woods.
Mahogany is the ideal material if you would mostly play country blues and other genres having a strong “punchy” tone. Moreover, mahogany can contribute significant overtone coloration due to its relatively high sound velocity.
Popular for its balanced warm sound, cedar (specifically Red Cedar) is a good choice. It promotes lighter playing style and has a high response rate, making it ideal for fingerstyle players.
This one’s also popular for its rich response attribute. Rosewood has a broad range of overtones and is distinguished for complexity and strength in the bottom end. It also features strong mids and highs that offer a richer tone to the upper registers. For the rest of the range, Rosewood gives an overall darkness of tone.
High degree internal damping and lower response rate make Maple acoustically transparent. The most popular species include bear claw, sugar, and big leaf. With maple, you don’t have to add significant tonal coloration to make the top tonal characteristic be heard.
Note: There are other wood parts such as the binding, bracing, fretboard, and bridge. All of which can also contribute to the limitation or enhancement of the already-existing primary wood material of a particular acoustic guitar.
# Body Style
Contrary to most first impressions, acoustic guitars actually come in different arrays of shapes and sizes – from classic small types to mid-sized to jumbo dreadnoughts. The attributes of the guitar that size affects include the tonal emphasis and sound projection.
When it comes to style, it’s surprising that experts advise considering tonal quality first before playing comfort. You can attain the comfort factor in the body style of the guitar. Some come in single or double cutaway designs. That way, you can have a more convenient access to the upper frets.
The size of your hand determines how you should choose the neck. Acoustic necks are generally listed as 12-fret or 14-fret. This pertains to the number of frets clear of the body and not the overall. Fundamentally, the neck’s width and thickness are based on two (2) factors – how many frets the neck has, and body size of the instrument itself.
Many beginners wonder whether to buy an acoustic or acoustic-electric guitar. This factor is actually an optional add-on and will neither harm nor enhance your beginner experience. However, it surely becomes handy when you want to be heard by a larger crowd.
Electronic-acoustic guitars come with preamplifiers and pickup systems designed for playing in large venues where your sound must clearly serve the whole room. Some instruments have preamps mounted inside the sound-hole while some have their preamps installed in a hole cut in the side part of the guitar.
# Tuning Machines
The type of tuning machine embedded in your guitar is also important. The tuning machine allows you to hold pitch and fine tune.
Go for a guitar having an enclosed machine head as they resist airborne corrosive elements as well as rust. That type doesn’t need persistent replacements and maintenance compared to open tuning machines.
# Bridge and Fingerboard
They may not be the most important factor but they do count. The bridge and fingerboard actually contribute to the sound your guitar produces. However, they do so in a subtle manner and can’t practically make or break the guitar’s music.
This factor determines the ability of your notes to play in tune as you move higher up the neck. The guitar will be unable to play in tune when the distance between frets is off, especially above the 12th fret.
The finish of the guitar affects how the wood vibrates. There is virtually nothing you can do about the guitar’s finish but you have to rely on the maker’s expertise – they choose wisely.
# Beginner starter pack
You don’t need to break the bank when buying your first guitar. As a beginner, an affordable choice that produces fine tones will suffice (read the last question on FAQs below). A beginner like you might do well with an acoustic guitar package that comes with the guitar, extra strings, a strap, and a tuner.
Famous Guitars Brands
Yamaha Corporation is a giant in the industry and is a conglomerate of a massive range of products and services, particularly musical instruments. This is the same Japanese corporation that owns the famous motorcycle brand – of which the mother company is the biggest shareholder. Moreover, Yamaha is the largest piano manufacturing company in the world.
With all that in mind, buying from a company as large as this must give you the confidence in the quality and experience you are going to get. Apart from organs, Yamaha makes bass guitars and other types of band instruments.
The Yamaha line-up gives any player an outstanding instrument that will surely complement their caliber. That said, the brand has something to offer for beginners to intermediate to expert.
One of the best acoustic guitar for beginners come from this brand so you might want to revisit one of them in the review section above.
Another brand to check when you’re looking for some entry-level guitars is Seagull. This Canadian brand – a sub-brand of Godin Guitars – offers great value to beginners by offering an exceptional craftsmanship that pays attention to details.
Seagull has competitive acoustic guitars from their top line-up down to their beginner series. Their low-end models can easily compete with the higher ends of other brands considering the quality of their components.
To improve tuning stability. Seagull guitars usually feature a headstock with its tuning machines linear to the nut. This attribute makes them ahead of other brands in the industry.
One impressive guitar for beginners is the Seagull S6 Original which can also be played by intermediate players. With this brand, you won’t have to break the bank to get something with a high-quality construction and unique tonewoods.
The Fender Musical Instrument Corporation (FMIC), or simply known as Fender is one of the most popular and recognized guitar brands today. This American brand not only manufactures guitars but also amplifiers and other stringed instruments. The company has been a musical entity for over 60 years which gives you the impression they really make great guitars – and they actually do.
One way to find the best acoustic guitar for beginners is by looking through this brand. There are high-quality guitars available for beginners while the pros can also get their hands on some high-end variants with premium materials.
With Fender, you can almost get a personalized guitar adhering to your specific preference due to the large array of models to choose from. You can choose fingerboards with the material of your choice, select pick-up configuration, opt for your favorite color and more.
What makes Fender more appealing is their new American Original Series that feature pro guitars with premium components. Just this 2018, they offer artists some designs from the past like the iconic Tim Armstrong Hellcat Acoustic-Electric Guitar which excites lots of avid fans out there.
Overall, Fender is the brand that perfectly blends cutting-edge craftsmanship and classical impact.
# What is the difference between acoustic and acoustic-electric guitar?
The primary difference between acoustic and acoustic-electric is the feature of the latter that allows you to plug it into a PA system or an amplifier so you can hear the sound more loudly. This electronic pickup system makes acoustic-electric ideal for live jamming in bars or in concerts.
Even if you don’t intend to play your guitar live in front of an audience, you can use its feature to record your song directly into an audio interface. The direct connection allows you to record pure sounds as opposed to using microphones that can potentially pick up background noises.
# Acoustic vs Acoustic-electric? Which is better?
One of the most crucial decisions, especially for beginners, is choosing between acoustic or acoustic-electric guitars. However, it’s not really that hard to choose because it all boils down to how you intend to use your guitar.
Bottom line – there is NO universal answer as to which one’s better between the two types. It’s a matter of personal preference and how you want to use the guitar. If you seek for a more personal experience as a learning beginner, you can opt for an acoustic type. On the other hand, if your guitar needs to be used in some band activities or recording stuff, an acoustic-electric would make an ideal instrument.
# Why are some guitars way more expensive than others?
There is a long list of factors behind that determine the value of a guitar, but the biggest impact on its price depends on how and where that particular acoustic guitar is made. For instance, expect to pay more for the instrument if it’s crafted right in the US (compared to those from overseas).
The second biggest factor that affects a guitar’s pricing is the wood material. The rarer the wood is the more expensive it becomes. Makers also set aside some good “pieces” of their choice when the shipment arrives. These “pieces” are then used eventually to craft limited edition instruments.
More factors that affect the size include the details, style, and finish of the guitar.
# Are cheap guitars worth buying for beginners?
Definitely YES. Just because it’s cheap, doesn’t mean it’s of low-quality. Lower-priced guitars are usually composed of a series of layers or laminated wood to make the top – in contrast to high-end variants that are mostly composed of one solid piece.
Laminated woods are impressive in terms of their resilience to withstand the changing temperatures and climates of different environments. Further, a low-end guitar crafted with laminated wood can also manufacture fine tones onstage.
You will always start at the bottom. Having the best acoustic guitar for beginners will not assure that you will sound like a pro the first day of using your acoustic instrument. However, the guitar can assure you the quality, experience, and sound integrity that you can never find in any other competing brands.
The list gives you the Top 8 best acoustic guitar for beginners. Now it all boils down to finally choosing one to start your musical endeavor!