Best Acoustic Guitars Under $500 in 2024

1
4853
Best Acoustic Guitars Under $500

Editor’s Choice: If you are looking for the best acoustic guitar under $500, the Seagull S6 Original gives you the most value for money. This is after we made a 12-hours research and sound comparisons. Unlike other guitars which are made from standard wood materials, the Seagull S6 is made from different high-quality types of wood which makes it produce a well-defined sound.

Most acoustic guitars can cost up to $4000 depending on the build, quality, and brand. But if you are working on a budget, paying 4000 bucks for an acoustic guitar could be too much.

Luckily, a 500 dollar price bracket is available for those who would want to enjoy a good guitar experience without having their wallets bleed.

I have created this list of best acoustic guitars under $500 if you’re into budget and quality. Shall we get started?

The Best Acoustic Guitars Under $500

Seagull S6 Original Acoustic Guitar

Editor's Pick
Seagull S6 Original Acoustic Guitar
4.7
CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

Under its Original Series, Seagull guitars offers the market an acoustic dreadnought excellently handcrafted with quality Cedar wood—the S6 Original.

It’s a known fact in the acoustic guitar world that when you get your hands on this instrument and start strumming a chord or two, you would hear a beautiful and warm full rich tone—a testament to the skill and thought process that had contributed in the building of this acoustic.

Albeit its plain traditional aesthetic, the S6 definitely boasts a quality craftsmanship, durability and playability that surprises professional guitar players due to its modest pricing.

The acoustic guitar’s top is made of Solid Cedar that had been pressure tested in order to produce a warmth and depth of tone that you can only get from musical instruments made of solid wood.

Its neck made of stiff Silver leaf maple has a shorter 24.84 inches scale that improves playability and its wide fretboard makes it feel like a classical guitar that makes fingerpicking a breeze.

Godin definitely got the Seagull S6 right with a quality that would make you feel like your playing a thousand dollar instrument except you really paid for less.

Pros

  • The solid cedar top adds a different tonal quality to the guitar
  • The Compensated Tusq by Graph Tech for its saddle
  • Great for fingerpicking

Cons

  • The neck is a touch thicker so that hand does not really wrap around it
  • The aesthetics are plain

 

Yamaha FG840 Acoustic Guitar

Also Great
Yamaha FG840 Solid Top Acoustic Guitar
4.5


CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON GUITAR CENTER
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

Popular for offering to the market quality acoustic guitars with great sound at affordable prices, Yamaha does it again when it introduced Yamaha FG840 dreadnought guitar as an addition to it FG series.

Aesthetically speaking, this dreadnought has a high-end appearance attributable to the complementary combination of a Flamed Maple back and sides and a solid spruce top.

It would also be noted that the guitar has a scalloped bracing design which combines with the solid wood of its body allowing it to produce a powerful and balanced acoustic sound that is leaps ahead of its predecessors.

Another notable feature of this dreadnought is the stability and sturdiness of its neck which is a plus when it comes to playability.

The Yamaha FG840 is the kind of guitar that would continue to impress you the more it ages.

So whether you are a beginner player or a professional musician, this acoustic guitar would definitely suit all your needs.

Pros

  • Balanced tone
  • The build quality and durability are impressive
  • Great value for money

Cons

  • The action is a bit too high
  • Limited choice for a finish since the only Natural is available

 

Taylor GS Mini Mahogany

Runner-Up
Taylor GS Mini Mahogany Acoustic Guitar
4.8
CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

When it comes to the Taylor GS Mini Mahogany, do not let size fool you.

It may be a scaled-down version of Taylor’s Grand Symphony Line, and sure, it may not be as big as most dreadnought guitars, but this ¾ acoustic guitar still carries the acoustic punch of a full-sized guitar that would leave you pleasantly surprised.

This portable six-string is perfect acoustic guitar for anyone but it is highly recommended for those travelling musicians or even a beginner acoustic guitar for kids.

With a solid mahogany top, the GS Mini produces a woody, dry tone—a usual sound for acoustic guitars with mahogany as a top wood.

And as it carries the Taylor brand, which is mostly known to producing great sounding guitars, the GS Mini will definitely not disappoint when it comes to durability, playability, and quality.

Pros

  • Surprisingly excellent sound quality for its size
  • Perfect for playing the blues but can still cater to any other styles
  • Tuners are responsive

Cons

  • For its price
  • You can already get a full-sized guitar
  • Due to its scaled size
  • The strings are a little closer to each other

 

Epiphone Hummingbird PRO

Epiphone Hummingbird PRO Acoustic/Electric Guitar
4.6


CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON GUITAR CENTER
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

The Epiphone Hummingbird Pro flutters into the acoustic electric guitar market with a promise of living up to Epiphone’s brand of producing quality guitars at affordable rates.

It is an eye-catcher of a guitar with its solid sitka spruce top, Cherry Sunburst Finish and intricately designed pickguard.

But the Epiphone Hummingbird Pro is not just about the visuals, with its solid spruce top, this acoustic guitar produces a wonderfully full, warm tone that is a sensory experience in itself.

A definite steal for the price, it can be used for just about any activity—jamming with friends, practicing for a gig or even performing in small venues.

The Hummingbird Pro may not be a Gibson, but its a quality instrument that’s sure can deliver your needs.

Pros

  • An attractive guitar that looks more than what it costs
  • Perfect playing guitar for any style
  • It is very easy to play with

Cons

  • There is no built-in tuner
  • Acoustically weak in terms of sound

 

Taylor Big Baby

Taylor Guitar Big Baby Taylor
4.0
CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

Taylor guitars are known to be one of the high-quality guitars in the market today but the price attached to such quality is quite hefty that is, until they introduced the Taylor Big Baby line.

A dreadnought acoustic guitar, the Big Baby is but a fraction smaller than the full-size dreadnoughts Taylor offers.

But just like its little brother(Baby Taylor), do not let the portable size fool you because the Big Taylor can definitely perform big.

It has a solid spruce top, layered walnut back and sides, and a satin varnish finish.

When it comes to sound, it really boils down to the kind of wood used in building the guitar. With this acoustic, the solid Sitka spruce top is responsible for the incredible sound the Big Baby produces.

As it is with every other Taylor guitar, this is one purchase you can never really go wrong with.

Pros

  • Excellent quality acoustic guitar due to its solid wood build.
  • Relatively affordable for a Taylor guitar.
  • Great sounding acoustic

Cons

  • Although cheap for a Taylor guitar
  • It’s still quite expensive compared to other acoustic guitar brands.
  • A slight reduction on its overall volume due to the smaller size.

 

Taylor BT2 Baby Taylor

Taylor BT2 Baby Taylor Acoustic Guitar
4.7
CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

A six-string acoustic guitar with good solid construction is just what you need to start playing the instrument. Taylor BT2 Baby Taylor might be the one you need. This is a three-fourths-size made with mahogany on top and layered Sapele sides and back provides full voice and great tone.

It has small body acoustic guitar type, which gives you comfort and playability, especially for small-size adults or kids. This has an “X” bracing, with enclosed die-cast chrome-plated tuning machines. Neck is made of Tropical American mahogany, while the fingerboard is made of ebony, along with the bridge.

It has a total of 19 frets with a scale length of 22.75-inch. The overall length of this acoustic guitar is 33.75 since it has 15.75-inch length, 12.5-inch width, and 3.375-inch depth.

Pros

  • Great for small players and kids
  • Setup nicely
  • With a stunning matte finish
  • Loud for its size
  • Produce crisp mid-range and high-range sounds
  • Sits well on your lap
  • Perfect for fingerpicking

Cons

  • Lacks a bit of low end compared to other budget acoustic guitars
  • May sometimes produce muddy mid and bass tones
  • Doesn’t seem to stay in tune for long
  • Produce some buzzing on top three strings and in the 5th fret

 

Yamaha FG800

Sweetwater – Yamaha FG800 Dreadnought – Natural
4.7


CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

Like most dreadnought shaped guitars in the 800 Series from Yamaha, the FG800 is designed to give louder and stronger sound even at low to mid-range responses. Hence, Yamaha FG800 Acoustic Guitar has the same capacity cutting-edge acoustic analysis technology onboard. So, even if you’re getting this new guitar at an affordable price, you aren’t deprived of enjoying great Yamaha features.

You’ll have an acoustic guitar with solid sitka spruce top, Nato back and sides that shape the beautiful sound of this guitar. Has a rosewood fingerboard and bridge. Thanks to the newly developed scalloped bracing design, this Yamaha acoustic guitar produces a well-balanced sound with its robust and compact guitar body. Now, you can enjoy low and mid-range harmonic overtones. Check out our review on Yamaha FG800 here.

Pros

  • One of the best acoustic guitars in the 800 series
  • A combination of Nato and Sitka Spruce
  • With dreadnought body style that offers great playability and volume
  • A complete kit that includes everything you need to start playing right away
  • Good projection and stays in tune
  • Sounds great at an affordable price 

Cons

  • Action is quite high
  • Don’t have dot inlay on the 3rd fret
  • Good for beginners
  • But has some manufacturing defects
  • Don’t have many color options

 

Martin LXM Little Martin

Martin Little Martin Acoustic Guitar Natural
4.1


CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON GUITAR CENTER
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

Martin LXM Little Martin is among the small-sized acoustic guitars that are capable of producing great sound. With the popular Martin quality craftsmanship, you are assured that it’s durable and easy to play. It’s among the great ‘pick and play’ guitar that lets you jam anywhere you want.

This Little Martin acoustic guitar has top wood made of Spruce pattern high pressure laminate textured finish with Mahogany sides and back, still with HPL (High Pressure Laminate) textured finish. For the neck, you’ll get a good rust Stratabond with a modified low oval profile. The fingerboard is made of solid East Indian rosewood along with the bridge.

With the scale length of 23-inch, you’ll get 14 clear frets and a total of 20 frets. Even though it’s small, it’s a playable guitar. It’s compact and could be a good choice for students and beginners. Not to mention, unlike many budget acoustic guitars with big body shape, this martin guitar, although small size, can produce a comparable big sound quality.

Pros

  • Durable and vibrant
  • Made with all sitka Spruce
  • Tilted headstock to easily tighten strings
  • One of the best acoustic guitars for practice
  • Traveling, and training
  • Steel strings are in good quality
  • Produce full and rich tone
  • Can stand up against full-sized guitars

Cons

  • Some players didn’t find it easy to hold the guitar
  • Some complained that is overly priced given its features
  • Doesn’t have the highest quality standards for the materials

 

Fender CD-60S Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

Fender 6 String Classic Design CD-60S
4.5


CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON GUITAR CENTER
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

For beginners or gigging guitarists who want to get a full package acoustic guitar, Fender CD-60S is for you, and it’s one of the best acoustic guitars on this list.

This acoustic guitar has a dreadnought body with a solid mahogany top featuring scalloped “X”-bracing for stability and balanced sound. The back and sides are made of mahogany, as well, to provide great resonance. It has an easy-to-play slim neck with rolled fingerboard edges providing great playability and nice feel so players can go on and on without stopping.

The Fender CD-60s is a great acoustic guitar that has 25.3-inch rosewood scale length with 20 frets. With excellent playability and great tone, you’ll get a good quality, affordable acoustic guitar you can really enjoy.

Pros

  • A great dreadnought guitar perfect for playing for the crowd
  • Made of mahogany to deliver a richer tone
  • Great deal for your money
  • Slim neck with very low action

Cons

  • Not all guitarists like the look of this guitar
  • Takes time to set up and may require some skills
  • Have some quality control issues
  • A perfect backup guitar or beginning guitar

 

Yamaha FS820

Yamaha FS820 Acoustic Guitar
4.7


CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON GUITAR CENTER
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

Another great guitar bundle you can afford to buy is the Yamaha FS820 Small Body Acoustic Guitar. This acoustic guitar offers louder and stronger sound, especially from low to mid-range, and it surprisingly sounds amazing.

Like most great acoustic guitars, its body is made with all mahogany and newly developed scalloped binding, giving it warm and woody design. Hence, you are assured of getting the richness you want in the mid frequencies. Since every guitar is crafted with thought and painstaking process, you’ll get a lifelong partner.

It has a C-shaped neck profile, which is perfect for those who have smaller hands with 24.9-inch scale length and a total of 20 frets. With die-cast chrome tuners, Urea saddle and nut and a reliable pickup system, you are getting a quality guitar. The mahogany acoustic guitar a serious musician needs for his career.

Pros

  • Has everything you need inside the package
  • Made of solid mahogany for the best sound output possible
  • Small-size guitar, sounds great
  • Perfect for any players
  • Action is perfect

Cons

  • Includes poor strings
  • Need a replacement right away
  • Two out of six bridge pins are very loose
  • None other worth mentioning

 

 

Selecting the right Acoustic Guitar for $500 (Buying Guide)

Let us get started by recommending the best guitars under $600 for your needs today. It covers many things like its materials, the size of its body and many general guidelines that you could ask at guitar shops. And the prices are not everything. What is the Core of the Acoustic Guitar? We’re gonna then look at some general suggestions for testing a guitar in a store.

Things to Know When Buying Acoustic Guitars

What is the most important consideration to look into when purchasing a new Acoustic Guitar? There’s many factors that need consideration, but if we can’t understand everything about our guitar, then we won’t be able to find the perfect guitar. We have listed all the essential functions that make up the Acoustic guitar, as well as some of its basic features.

Strings – Steel vs nylon

Guitar strings have a vital part in a guitar. The different kinds of strings produce distinct sounds — some strings have stronger durability and some do not. All strings look distinctly different. It’s common practice to use steel strings in electric & acoustic guitars, and nylon for classical guitars, and flamenco guitars. The higher volume makes the guitar sound more powerful and this is especially important in certain music types like rock and roll.

Size

Lets begin with size…. The dimension counts. Possibly it’s the biggest consideration when selecting a acoustic guitar. The bigger a guitar then the bigger the volume, sound and low bass it creates. The smaller the guitar the opposite is true. The bigger jumbo body shape guitar can prove difficult to gain more trebles. Conversely, with the 3×4 guitar and the mini guitar it is difficult to cut through. Manufacturing has worked successfully to produce three – four-size guitars that give a better balanced sound with a punchy bass that ties with already clear mid and treble.

Budget and Uses

You may stare at an expensive guitar and just drool over it because you lack the budget or you may spend too much for a guitar that isn’t that useful to you. Your budget should coincide with the reason why you’re buying a guitar.

For a $500 budget, you are looking for an acoustic guitar for serious beginners to intermediate players. Hence, if you want a practice guitar or something you can just play occasionally, maybe you can lower your budget.

Also Read: Best acoustic guitars under $300

Yet, if you are an enthusiastic guitarist aiming to go professional, the $500 guitar is perfect. With guitars this much you can teach yourself to go to a more complicated progression, yet still playable and comfortable.

Quality Craftsmanship

This should be the first thing you need to check. Look for dents, cracks and bridge separation. You might do it unknowingly, but, it’s really important to inspect the guitar carefully.

Slight scratches and scuff marks are inevitable since the guitar is on display and sometimes it falls off from the stand or bumps into other guitars. You can use these to your advantage and some sellers knock down the price when you see scratches from the guitar. This is an advantage in buying in-store than online.

However, beware of the cracks which aren’t as obvious as the scratches. These may affect the sound of the guitar. Also, look into the bridge. It should fully sit on top of the guitar without any crack.

Action

Once you’ve chosen a guitar, seriously, pick a ruler and measure the space between the strings and the fingerboard at the 12th fret. For steel-string acoustic guitar it shouldn’t be more than 2.6mm, 3mm for classical, 1.8mm for electric guitars and 2mm for bass guitars.

Although higher action can be fixed by a professional luthier, it’ll be an additional expense from your end. So, better yet, have a guitar with a lower action right away.

Strings

 If you’re buying a guitar, especially for the display, you’ll notice that the strings are old and rusty. This is common for most steel string guitars, and it’s the reason why the guitar won’t stay in tune so well. If you see that it’s the case in your guitar, you need to spend a few bucks more to have it changed right away.

It’s better to have the professional luthier or guitar tech replace the strings so you can hear the tuning and intonation. At least, you’ll save yourself from possible accident, when the strings snap. At the same time, you’ll also save yourself from not performing well if you keep the old strings on your guitar.

Wood

Woods are important. The tone plays an important role in guitars. Though most guitars use various wood combos and each part has a different effect on sounding. The wood used for putting together the body and the guitars tops has the most taint. Certain woods have distinctly different colors. Mahogany wood that is on this list is very popular and it is known to give warmer, richer and darker sounds. Others like Nato and Okule also offer comparable properties. Solid spruce has been mainly used on guitar tops. It produces an extremely resonant sound. Sapele is another popular hardwood which delivers better sound.

Intonation

Since we mentioned intonation, we’ll discuss a bit about it. It’s still like the guitar is in tune, but it’s on the harmonics. Sometimes the guitar plays well on the first few frets, but may be out of tune towards the higher frets.

To check this, you need to play the harmonic on the 6th string, 12th fret, then fretted note on the 6th string 12th fret. If they sound different, the intonation is out. Make adjustments and repeat the process for all six strings until you don’t get any sharp or flat. Now, you get a guitar that’s properly intonated and you’re good to go.

Spend the next 10 minutes learning a lot more about the tips in buying the best acoustic guitars under $500 from this YouTube video. You will learn about how much budget you need to chill out for an acoustic guitar that you can enjoy playing with.

You also want to assess yourself with the kind of music you want to play. If you want to achieve bigger sound, you need a bigger guitar. The smaller guitar is what you need if you want a brighter midrange. You also have to consider your stature, because you need to find the perfect size that fits your built and make you play comfortably with.

These and more are the things you can learn from the said video. With the guidelines we shared with you above, you will surely pick the ones you really won’t be tired of playing. Be it a budget guitar, a $500 guitar or a more expensive one, you can easily and quickly progress if it fits your preferences and you’re comfortable playing with it.

Go to a Local Store

Next thing to do, is going to the nearest local store. For beginners and budget buyers, it’s better really going to a guitar store and shop there. Yes, you can buy a cheap guitar online, however, if possible, you should try to play the guitar and try to ‘feel’ it. Unless you’re buying expensive ones with known quality from a trusted online guitar shop, you can be comfortable, even without trying it out.

For first-time buyers, you need to take someone with you who knows guitar too well and let him play for you. Or, if you know how to play some chords on a guitar, it’s better to play it yourself. Nothing beats the first-hand experience of the weight and the feel of the guitar.

Affordable Acoustic Guitar With Premium Sound, Is It Possible?

Can you really get the best acoustic guitar under $500? The answer is definitely, yes! You can even get great acoustic guitars under $200 or $300, how much more a $500 price point?

ALSO READ: Our ultimate list of the best acoustic guitars here (full review).

Like Fender or Yamaha, even Martin, they produce entry-level and low-cost guitars without sacrificing the sound quality and the craftsmanship. However, choosing one among the streams of entry-level guitars out there requires a lot of effort and expertise.

So, if you’re a beginner with a $500 budget and wanting to get a great guitar, you should consult an experienced guitar player or a guitar tech. But, if you want to do it on your own, you have to make enough research. The products above are carefully researched. Yet, if you want to go through the hassle we experience, at least read the guidelines below.

 

Best acoustic guitars under 500 – Top Pick

Editor's Pick
Seagull S6 Original Acoustic Guitar
4.7
CHECK PRICE ON SWEETWATER CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
We may earn commission from purchases made from our links, at no additional cost to you.

When it comes to purchasing any product, the bottom line would always be quality in relation to the offered price. And the Seagull S6 Original Acoustic Guitar just perfectly sums it up, a real great bang for the buck guitar, and it’s our #1 pick on this list’s best acoustic guitars under $500.

You would want to make sure that you had invested your money in an instrument that is worth your while, right? Then I highly recommend getting this one right now.

Let me know what you think by leaving your comments below.

1 COMMENT

  1. That Epiphone Hummingbird looks great, but admittedly I’m an Epiphone fanboy. My first guitar many years ago was an Epiphone DR-100. In any case, it goes to show that you don’t need to spend a fortune to get a great sounding guitar. The rest of the guitars you chose look pretty solid too. In fact if I had to buy one of these guitars my biggest problem would be which one to choose!

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.