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If you're looking to learn to play the acoustic guitar, it's important that you have a strong starting point.

The best way to start strong is to get a great beginner acoustic guitar.

Shopping for the best option can be time consuming, so to help you out, we asked 10 guitar teachers to tell us what they think is the best acoustic guitar for beginner guitar players.

Additionally, we noticed that many beginner guitarists don't really know what to look for in a guitar, or how much they should expect to pay for their first one. To help get you past these hurdles, we also asked the responding guitar teachers to provide this information.

More specifically, we asked each guitar teacher these questions:

  • What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?
  • What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?
  • What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?
  • What makes it awesome?

With each response, we've included links to the respondents' websites so you have a place to start taking lessons when you're ready.

Hopefully these responses will help you make the best decision on your first acoustic guitar.

Let's dive in.



Guitar Tricks


Mike from The Art of Guitar

Website | YouTube


What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?

Since they're usually not sure if they'll stick to it I wouldn't spend a ton on it. Make sure it at least plays well. Learning on a poorly constructed guitar can really take the fun out of the whole process and may even convince you that guitar is harder than it really has to be. You can also fix many issues with less-expensive guitars by bringing it to a luthier.

What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?

I've seen decent beginner acoustics run from $50 to $300. Craigslist has made buying used guitars much easier these days.

What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?

Starter packs are great. They also come with a lot of fun little things to play with such as picks and tuners typically.

Fender CC-140SCE Concert Acoustic-Electric Guitar

What makes it awesome?

It's far from awesome but the awesome part is that you get so much for so little.


Bobby Crispy

YouTube


What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?

It's important that an acoustic guitar feels comfortable for a beginner guitarist. How a guitar feels may vary from player to player. Is the fretboard easy to play? Is the body of the guitar the right size (hopefully not too big)? An acoustic guitar with too big of a back end my cause irritation to the inner side of the strumming arm. Also, make sure the fretboard is flat and there is no buzzing. Are the tuning heads easy to turn? And make sure the strings are not too high off of the fretboard.

What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?

It depends where you go to buy an acoustic guitar. A pawn shop may offer a good quality used guitar from $100-$200. A music store is usually more, from $200-$400. Best to shop around for deals on an acoustic guitar that you will like. Also there are beginner guitar kits that also come with a carrying bag, tuner, strings, strap, etc.

What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?

Yamaha makes good quality beginner acoustic guitars. They are usually easy to find in music stores.

Yamaha F325D Acoustic Guitar

What makes it awesome?

Yamaha makes good quality acoustic guitars for a good price, and are a popular brand so are usually found in guitar stores.


Monique Hernandez-Fuentes from Guitar Tricks

Website | YouTube


What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?

Make sure to sit down and strum the notes when trying out a guitar. It should not be hard to push down the strings with your fretting hand, even if you are just starting out. The action should be as low as possible to make learning easy. Make sure to check for loose parts; there should be no rattling noises coming from the inside of the guide or inside of the neck. Also take a business card and run it along the bottom of the bridge to make sure that the bridge isn't coming off. An electronic system is not a big deal when buying an acoustic because it's relatively easy to add an electronic pickup component later on should you decide you need one.

What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?

Anything less than $300 isn't really worth it, as the components of the instrument just become really cheap at that price point. $300 - $500 will get you a decent instrument to learn on that will allow you to learn easily.

What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?

Taylor GS Mini

What makes it awesome?

Taylor's GS Mini series is an incredible deal. The instruments sound great for their small size, are set-up quite nicely, and purchasing a brand new Taylor guarantees you will be added to their lifetime warranty program, which covers certain substantial repairs during the lifetime of the instrument.


Andrew Clarke from Guitareo

Website | YouTube | Facebook | Awake O Sleeper (Andrew's band)


What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?

Before you commit to buying a guitar, it's best to do some research. Put together a list of acoustic guitars you're interested in and peruse some forums and reviews to see what people say about some of the guitars you have in mind.

The main things you're looking for are comfort and aesthetics.

You want a guitar that isn't going to fight you - If you're a smaller person, you'll want a guitar with a smaller body. And if you have particularly small hands, it might be worth looking into a 3/4-size guitar to start out. The way the guitar looks is going to matter a fair bit as well. If it doesn't look good, you aren't going to be as inspired to pick it up and practice.

What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?

I usually recommend spending at least $200 on an acoustic guitar. Going with a reputable brand and spending a little more is always going to be worth it in the long run if you plan on sticking with it. This also makes a big difference if you want to trade-in or resell the guitar down the road.

What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?

Yamaha FG800

What makes it awesome?

The Yamaha FG800 is built with beginners in mind. High quality, rich and balanced sound, standard Dreadnought body-style. A great all-around acoustic guitar. You're getting a lot of guitar for a pretty modest price.


Jeffrey Thomas

Website | YouTube | Facebook

Note: Jeff wanted to mention that he's offering a free lesson via Skype.


What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?

  1. Tuning - Make sure the tuning pegs work. Sounds like a given, but I have seen problems with the gears on brand new guitars, so don't assume they are fine.

  2. Intonation - Put the guitar on a tuner and get the open strings in tune, then play the strings at the 12th fret for each string. This note should be a octave higher than the open note. If it's sharp or flat, the intonation is out and there is very little that can be done to correct it.

  3. Good frets - Check for sharp overhanging frets on the bass and treble sides.

  4. Comfort - Make sure the guitar is a comfortable fit to your body.

  5. Dead notes and high frets - Check for dead spots or high frets. Literally play each note from open until you run out of frets. If you hit a dead note it will not play or sound buzzy. This means the guitar needs fret work.

What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?

I would say anywhere from $150 to $350 is the entry level guitar cost.

What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?

Fender CD-60SCE

What makes it awesome?

I like Fender - they make a consistent product and have great warranties. The CD-60 is a full size dreadnought with great projection and is very playable.


Erich from Your Guitar Sage

Website | YouTube | Twitter | Instagram


What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?

Budget, feel and sound! Don't worry about who plays what or brand names. NONE of that matters if the guitar does not FEEL good to you and have the SOUND that you are looking for. Of course, most people have a budget and there is no need in trying $2000 guitars if you can't afford one, except for expanding your education about different types of guitar. That's the short answer.

What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?

I have $100 guitars that play and sound great. I have $15,000 guitars that play and sound great. That said, a great middle of the road guitar that won't break the bank is an Epiphone Masterbilt. I find them to sound remarkable AND play great, ESPECIALLY for the money. I like buying guitars used and save about half from the retailers. A good used Masterbilt will cost about $300 on Ebay or Craigslist.

What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?

Epiphone DR-500MCE

What makes it awesome?

It's the most "bang for the buck" guitar I have ever played.


Rob Swift

YouTube | Patreon


What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?

Visit “mom and pop shops,” big-name musical instrument retailers, Craigslist, ebay & Amazon to compare the reviews and prices of various models. The ability to make an educated-decision based on the feel, sound quality and play-ablilty is important. Consider renting a guitar for the first month of lessons. A good teacher will serve as a guide throughout the buying process, and will teach you to play well enough to “test drive” your options.

Many beginner students may decide to buy a used instrument, if so, then be wary of common flaws such as:

  • High Action - Excessive distance between the strings and the fret board.
  • Warping - Abrupt sinking and swelling of the body.
  • Splitting - Cracking of the finish and, in more extreme cases, the wood itself.

What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?

With guitars you get what you pay for. It is very common to find a lack-luster instrumentselling for $125, while a model of far better quality is selling for $175! That small price jump can make a noticeable difference in quality.

What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?

Yamaha FS800

What makes it awesome?

This guitar is one of the most popular buys on Amazon and it's easy to see why. It's comfortable, well constructed and sounds fantastic for a guitar at this price point. Best of all, it's available in concert size, which is more comfortable for most guitar players.


Bryan Mays

Website


What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?

Comfort should be the first thing any guitarist should look for when shopping for a guitar.

What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?

$100-250 Many retailers offer beginner packages with just about everything you need to start.

What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?

Yamaha Gigmaker Deluxe Acoustic Guitar Package

What makes it awesome?

Yamaha guitars are always great for starters but, Beyond that it comes with a strap, tuner, extra strings, picks, as well as DVD's.

All that for $199.99.


Marty Schwartz from MartyMusic

YouTube | Instagram | Facebook


What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?

Easy action, lighter strings, needs to stay in tune decently, and affordability. Also, it helps to have someone that has experience help you pick one out.

What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?

$300-$500 would be ideal, but sometimes you can get lucky at a garage sale.

What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?

If you can afford it, I really love the Taylor Academy.

Taylor Dreadnought Academy A10

What makes it awesome?

I still use it as a professional, but it has very high quality parts, plays easy for a beginner, has a built in tuner, and electronics so you can plug it in. It's a hair smaller than a standard Acoustic so you can get around the neck and form chords easily as a beginner.


Carl Brown

Website | YouTube | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook


What should a beginner guitarist look for when shopping for an acoustic guitar?

The main thing to be aware of is that you will want an acoustic guitar with pretty low action (the height of the strings over the frets). A badly made or set-up guitar can have the strings set too high, making the guitar very difficult to play.

What should a beginner guitarist be prepared to spend on an acoustic guitar?

I always recommend spending a little more money in the beginning. If you start with a complete bottom of the line starter guitar, you are going to want to upgrade within a few months. So I recommend getting a more midrange priced guitar between $350-$800. It will be cheaper in the long run and if you decide playing guitar isn't for you, you will find it much easier to sell the nicer guitar.

What would you say is the best acoustic guitar for beginners?

Ibanez AEG12IINT

What makes it awesome?

It looks stunning, but in addition to that, Ibanez focuses on playability with their guitars. That usually means a very comfortable guitar neck that is easy to play.




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