I’ve been teaching guitar for many years and have been around guitar enthusiasts, collectors, and players for many more. As the owner of Real Brave, to me a budding guitarist needs to have something they enjoy playing, and believe it or not many times a run-of-the-mill guitar that isn’t Fender or Martin can suffice. What I mean by that is, that you don’t need to spend a lot of money to get a good starter guitar. And for that, I got inspired to write this blog post.
You see for many years, I’ve guided families to make sure they spend money on something that will stay in tune, is reputable, and will take a fall or two. These are the best guitar brands that I know of that will get you where you need to go quicker and you will save a little cash. Now for the second guitar once you know a song and can finger your way through a solo, well I’ve got you covered there too. For now, let’s walk through the best guitar brands for beginners so we can get you from beginner to expert!
Fender Squier Series
The Fender Squier series offers affordable versions of popular Fender guitars. They have exceptional playability, and quality build, and deliver the classic Stratocaster or Telecaster sound. While they may lack tonal versatility, the pickups still provide suitable tones for different genres. The series is affordable, making it a great choice for beginners or those on a budget. Overall, the Squier series offers excellent value for money. These guitars are known for their playability and quality within their price range and Fender falls in #1 on the best guitar brands because of the reasons mentioned here.
Yamaha Pacifica Series
The Yamaha Pacifica Series is a top-notch guitar line loved by musicians worldwide. They are well-crafted, comfortable to play, and popular among all genres. The guitars have superb build quality, using high-standard materials for durability. The necks are designed for easy playing, suitable for players with any hand size. The guitars are versatile, handling a variety of genres. They offer excellent value for money, making them accessible to all budgets. Overall, the Pacifica Series is a reliable, versatile, and high-quality choice for any guitarist.
Epiphone Les Paul Special II
The Epiphone Les Paul Special II is a budget-friendly guitar for beginners or those on a tight budget. It has the iconic Les Paul design at a fraction of the price. The guitar has a mahogany body and neck, making it comfortable to play. It also has decent sound with its humbucking pickups. The hardware is reliable and the guitar has a few minor drawbacks in terms of build quality. Overall, it’s a solid choice for beginners looking for an affordable option to start their musical journey.
Ibanez GIO Series
The Ibanez GIO series is a budget-friendly option for rock and metal guitarists who still want a high-quality instrument. It offers a variety of body styles and colors for customization. With comfortable neck profiles and excellent hardware, the guitars are designed for fast and effortless playing. Some models have high-output humbuckers and double-locking tremolo systems for powerful tones and expressive techniques. While there are compromises compared to higher-end Ibanez guitars, the GIO series performs impressively in its price range. Overall, it is a reliable and versatile option for rock and metal players.
Taylor Academy Series
The Taylor Academy Series is a top pick for beginners. These guitars are known for their high quality and attention to detail. They are designed to be easy to play and have a sleek feel. The sound is rich and balanced, thanks to the carefully selected tonewoods and bracing techniques. Despite the exceptional quality, these guitars are reasonably priced. Overall, the Taylor Academy series offers a great foundation for aspiring guitarists.
The Seagull S6 is a top-quality acoustic guitar with exceptional craftsmanship and sound. Its solid tonewoods, including a cedar top and wild cherry back and sides, contribute to its durability and enhance its resonance and tone. The S6’s unique blend of warm undertones and bright clarity makes it versatile for different styles and genres. It also offers great playability with a comfortable neck profile and rosewood fretboard. The S6 offers excellent value for its price and has received high praise from musicians of all levels. Overall, it is a standout guitar that is worth considering for its versatility and reliability.
Cordoba C3 or C5
The Cordoba C3 and C5 are popular and affordable options for classical guitar enthusiasts. The C3 has a warm and balanced tone, while the C5 offers a higher level of craftsmanship and a more refined sound. Both guitars are well-built and suitable for classical playing techniques. They are entry-level to mid-range instruments and may not compare to higher-end models in terms of tonal depth and complexity. Overall, the Cordoba C3 and C5 are recommended for beginners and intermediate players looking for a quality, affordable classical guitar.
Washburn WD10 Series
The Washburn WD10 Series is a high-quality and affordable acoustic guitar, perfect for beginners or those on a budget. It has a solid spruce top and mahogany back and sides, resulting in a vibrant and well-balanced tone. The guitar is comfortable to play, with a comfortable neck and good action. It has a sleek and classic design with tasteful detailing. Despite its affordability, the WD10 Series delivers reliable and enjoyable sound. While it may lack tonal complexity for advanced players, it is an excellent option for beginners. Overall, the WD10 Series is a great choice for those starting their musical journey.
Gretsch guitars combine vintage appeal with modern features, making them versatile for a range of players. They have distinctive retro aesthetics and offer various models to suit different styles and preferences. Known for their warm tones, they are ideal for blues, rockabilly, and jazz. The craftsmanship is exceptional, resulting in reliable instruments. While not ideal for heavy sounds, Gretsch guitars can still handle various genres with the right amplifier and effects. Overall, they offer a classic yet versatile choice for musicians.
PRS (Paul Reed Smith)
As a fan and owner of PRS guitars, I can confidently say they live up to their reputation for high-quality craftsmanship and versatile sound. Whether you’re a beginner or a professional guitarist, PRS guitars offer exceptional tone, playability, and durability. The SE series provides a more affordable option for beginners without compromising on quality. With their ability to adapt to various musical genres, PRS guitars are a reliable choice for any musician.
Choosing the right guitar brand for beginners is crucial to ensure an enjoyable learning experience. Consider your musical preferences, budget, and the genre you wish to pursue before making a decision. Remember, the best guitar is the one that feels comfortable in your hands and inspires you to keep strumming and practicing. Happy playing!