There are plenty of great acoustic guitars for you to look for, but not all of them are affordable. You need to look around to see what the best acoustic guitar under $500 can be for your use. This is perfect if you are learning to play the guitar, or if you’re a budding musician who wants an affordable option to play.
Team’s Choice for the Best Acoustic Guitar Under $500
What type of body style should I consider?
You have to look for a quality acoustic guitar by finding a model that has a body style that you can easily play with. A typical concert guitar can feature a small size that is about 13 ½ inches on the lower bout to get a better and brighter sound.
This is smaller than many other guitars of the same type. The lower bout in particular refers to the spot that is on the vert bottom part of the guitar and can influence how the guitar sounds as a larger one is clearly going to be deeper in its tone.
A grand concert acoustic guitar is another choice that features a slightly larger body. It will feature a design of about 14 inches at the lower bout and will create a strong sound with a mid-range tone to make it fit well.
An auditorium guitar is a model that is clearly noticed for having a slight bend around the top near the neck. This is a larger model that is about 15 to 16 inches in size at the lower bout and will create a stronger look.
You can also find a jumbo option that is about 17 inches at the lower bout. This offers a larger boom but it can also be a little harder for people to handle. Still, those who want a more intense sound out of an acoustic guitar could choose this option.
What's the Wood?
The wood that is used on the guitar is important to consider. The options you’ll find for the best guitar under $500 include many that create different reflective sounds that are easy for many to play along with.
A cedar wood is an option that is soft and will create a brighter tone. It will respond to movements on the player’s end rather quickly.
Ebony is a strong wood that will create a tone that is just as strong. Rosewood is more commonplace and offers a better attack and a stronger sense of projection. It even works well when getting bass-heavy sounds out of the guitar.
Maple has a lower response rate and will create better-sounding high tones. It has a lower resonance that can also be heard carefully even with other sounds coming out. In addition, a maple guitar will be easier to hear even when it does not have as much of a feedback rate as a guitar normally would.
If you want more mid-range sounds to be projected well then a koa guitar would be a better option to stick with. However, koa wood is not as easily available as maple or cedar wood materials can be.
Do I want Solid or Laminate?
A solid wood guitar is made with a single block of wood while a laminate option features a series of sheets of wood that are affixed together to create one big board.
A laminate surface will not vibrate as well as a solid wood surface can. As a result, the sound that is generated by a guitar with a laminate surface will not be too rich. However, it will also stay consistent for a long time, thus making a laminate guitar an option for a newer player to look for.
A more experienced player will need to instead stick with a solid wood guitar. This is an option that will feature a better vibration and a richer sound when played properly.
Which strings are going to work best?
When looking for the best acoustic guitar under $500, you need to look for a choice that features steel strings. A popular option among rock and country players alike, steel strings will create bigger tones that are loud and bright.
Nylon guitar strings are not as effective, but they can still create lighter sounds that are suitable if you want to play folk music. Nylon strings create softer tones and are often easier to play with as they can last a little longer. Still, they are not necessarily going to create sounds that are quite as intense or strong as what you might find on another model.
How many strings do I need?
Working with six stringed guitars is a great place to start. It’s typically easier to find a six-string guitar for less than $500 in most cases. However, you might find a few twelve-string options.
Twelve-string acoustic guitars are made with two strings that have been tuned with each other on six courses. This will create a chorus effect that adds a slight echo to the sound that comes from the guitar. This in turn creates a more intense sound that might be stronger and more exciting for people to hear.
A twelve-string model is clearly going to be a little more intimidating to some less-experienced players. Still, there is always that great potential for a twelve-string option to be easy to work with if you want to get a dense sound out.
What about the neck?
You can never really forget about the neck when choosing a good guitar. You can find plenty of guitars that have necks that feature enough frets on them and plenty of sensible dot markers to help guide you in the process of playing the right way.
In many cases, you can find some necks that feature strong and durable tuners at the top. These tuners should be clearly labeled and easy to work with so you can tune your guitar to the proper setting that you want to work with. If used right, it should be easier for you to get a better sense of playback out on the guitar as you try to make it work for your playing needs.
Regardless of what you order, you have to choose an option that you know is suitable for your playing needs. By going after the right option, it will be easier for you to play something back the right way.
Editor's Choice for the Best Acoustic Guitar Under $500
The Fender FA135CE is a concert-style guitar that features a laminate finish with a basswood surface all around and a rosewood fingerboard. It even has its own built-in tuner to help amplify the sounds coming from the guitar.
This guitar especially uses a series of simple white dots on the neck for markers and has a clearly open sound hole with no real obstructions. The metallic account around the hole will not interfere with the way how the sounds come out of the guitar. This can be found for about $180, thus making it a good option for a newer player to try out.
The Oscar Schmidt OG2SM acoustic guitar is noticeable for its spalted maple finish but it also has mahogany sides and a back made of the same wood. The rosewood fingerboard and bridge helps to create clear tones that reflect quite well. This uses clear tuners at the top and also works with six strings that are easy to replace.
This guitar can work with nylon or steel strings alike. This can handle most tuning formats and can be easily configured to play with any style. This is an especially affordable model at about $270 in most places that sell such guitars.
Available for about $90, the Jasmine S34C NEX acoustic guitar has a natural glossy finish and a dreadnought style. It uses a laminate spruce surface to keep sounds consistent for years to come. The rosewood fingerboard also works well with most tones.
The X bracing system is also made to keep the bracing pattern closer to the sound hole to help project sounds with care. This is made with a slim neck and a synthetic bone nut and saddle to keep the sounds projecting well as long as the guitar is placed. This guitar is only about six pounds in weight.
The Yamaha FG720S-12 is an acoustic guitar that can handle twelve strings. It uses diecast chrome tuners at the top to help with adjusting all of the strings. It is easy to replace and remove any strings that need to be fixed as necessary.
This also has a rosewood finger board and bridge to help with creating fuller sounds all around the guitar. This in turn establishes a great sound while the sound hole is adorned with a metal accent that keeps the shape intact and allows for plenty of vibrations to be taken in. This can be found for $330 and is only about seven pounds in weight.
Don't settle for the cheapest git you can find. No matter you're price range, it's most important to get a good quality product. You want to make sure you're investing in an instrument that will be by your side for years to come. Our four recommended guitars are the best acoustic guitars for under $500.