Acoustic Guitar

5 Best Acoustic Guitars Under $300

October 16, 2018
Damilola

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5 Best Acoustic Guitars Under $300

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If you’re an acoustic guitar player, then you must be aware that acoustic guitars are of different kinds. And they can be quite expensive as well. All acoustic guitars work on the same mechanism to produce sound – catching vibrations through the air between the strings and guitar’s body. But all of them have distinctive features that make each piece different from the others.

Today we will guide you through some of the best ways to pick a suitable acoustic guitar. Also, we will be primarily focusing on the best affordable guitars priced well under 300 dollars.

However, before exploring our list of top 5 picks, it is necessary that you understand what features make one acoustic guitar better than the others.

Quick Links: 5 Best Acoustic Guitars Under $300

  1. Yamaha FG830 Solid Top Folk Guitar
  2. Bristol BD-16 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar
  3. Takamine GD20-NS Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar
  4. Alvarez Artist Series Af30 Folk Guitar
  5. Breedlove Discovery Concert Acoustic Guitar

Best Rated Acoustic Guitars Under $300 Reviewed

Yamaha FG830 Solid Top Folk Guitar

  • Strong and sturdy tuning pegs.
  • Rosewood made fingerboard and bridge.
  • Strings are strong and create zero buzz.
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Bristol BD-16 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

  • Strings do not create a buzzing noise.
  • Has a slim neck that gives better hold.
  • Easy reach fretboard, perfect for beginners.
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Takamine GD20-NS Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

  • Tuning pegs rotate smoothly, diminishing string friction.
  • Dotted inlay makes the guitar suitable for beginners.
  • The slim neck and anti-slip body offer better grip.
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Alvarez Artist Series Af30 Folk Guitar

  • Sound produced can be warm as well as sharp.
  • The guitar is handmade and lightweight.
  • Large soundboard makes music loud, but not noisy.
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Breedlove Discovery Concert Acoustic Guitar

  • Strings can be strummed at sharp-notes.
  • Guitar is lightweight and portable
  • Perfect companion for people with small hands.
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Acoustic guitars can be quite expensive since they produce high tonal quality sound. But if you’re a beginner or someone who cannot afford luxuries but still love playing music, our list is just what you need.

Yamaha FG830 Solid Top Folk Guitar

Pros:

  • Strong and sturdy tuning pegs.
  • Rosewood made fingerboard and bridge.
  • Strings are strong and create zero buzz.
  • Perfect for classical music beginners.
  • Comfortable grip even for people with small hands.

Cons:

  • A plastic made saddle top.
  • Somewhat a high action guitar.

Yamaha FG830 Solid Top Folk guitar is a perfect classical acoustic guitar with nylon strings. It has a rosewood fingerboard and bridge that can produce mid-range to deep sound. Furthermore, the design is enhanced for better tonal quality with an abalone inlay designed immediately around the guitar’s soundhole. This intensifies the sound depth and makes it clearer. Also, it has a spruce top and is available in 5 beautiful colors.

Bristol BD-16 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

Pros:

  • Strings do not create a buzzing noise.
  • Has a slim neck that gives better hold.
  • Easy reach fretboard, perfect for beginners.
  • Tuning pegs are sturdy and reliable.
  • Controlled pitch and adjustable truss rod.

Cons:

  • Not built for small hands.
  • Strings are fragile and tensioned.

This is a handmade dreadnought guitar with a mahogany fretboard, spruce top, and bridge. It can be used to play classical folk tunes and has a slim neck. Easy to hold with a comfortable grip, this product has a forward X bracing. Furthermore, the Bristol BD-16 acoustic guitar has an adjustable truss rod that makes it a long-term investment. This is because, adjustable truss rods help in modifying the guitar with advanced features. Lastly, the backside of this guitar is mahogany made. As a result, it is highly responsive to vibrations.

Takamine GD20-NS Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

Pros:

  • Tuning pegs rotate smoothly, diminishing string friction.
  • Dotted inlay makes the guitar suitable for beginners.
  • The slim neck and anti-slip body offer better grip.
  • Smooth finish and a glassy body.

Cons:

  • Strings do not have much resistance against non-stop strumming.
  • Since not handmade, the weight can vary from piece-to-piece.

Takamine GD20-NS guitar is perfect for creating different music styles. It has a slim neck and rosewood made fretboard that increases the harmonics and tonal quality. This guitar is a mix of different tonewoods like cedarwood top, rosewood fretboard and a pin-less bridge, and a mahogany back. As a result, it is highly responsive to slightest vibrations and can control the pitch to create different styles of music. With a 12 inches long fretboard and superb quality intonation, this product is ideal for a single note run. Also, it has a split saddle, rosewood head cap, and die-cast high-quality tuners.

Alvarez Artist Series Af30 Folk Guitar

Pros:

  • Sound produced can be warm as well as sharp.
  • The guitar is handmade and lightweight.
  • Large soundboard makes music loud, but not noisy.

Cons:

  • Strings aren’t easy on fingers for first timers.
  • It is difficult to adjust strings manually.
  • Doesn’t fit small hands because frets aren’t narrow-spaced.

Alvarez Artist Series folk guitar has a large soundboard that makes high and low notes more playable, deeper and louder. Its strings do not create recurring vibrations while strumming. This makes the tunes clearer. With a scalloped bracing and a solid wooden top, this product can produce sound on various scales. It has a bi-level bridge and asymmetric tone bars. The guitar is lightweight, but does not fit small hands. With a larger fretboard and maple wood bridge, the sound produced by this guitar is automatically amplified without the need of external amplifiers. Also, the guitar’s back and sides are made of mahogany tonewood and it comes in different colors.

Breedlove Discovery Concert Acoustic Guitar

Pros:

  • Strings can be strummed at sharp-notes.
  • Guitar is lightweight and portable
  • Perfect companion for people with small hands.

Cons:

  • Tuning pegs do not rotate smoothly
  • Strings are thick; thus, hard on fingers.
  • Lightweight and portable, but not long-lasting.

The Breedlove Discovery concert guitar is an absolute beauty with a perfectly polished body and smooth finish. It has a rosewood fingerboard and mahogany tonewood body and slim neck. Use of multiple kinds of wood makes the guitar highly responsive. Thus, it is easier to produce low notes as well as high notes with this guitar. It has a spruce top and a pin-less ebony made bridge. With total 20 frets on the 25.5-inch fretboard, this product is an ideal piece for people with small hands. Also, it is a low action guitar with optimum gap between the frets and strings. It is lightweight as well.

Features in a Good Acoustic Guitar

Acoustic guitars are the best sounding guitars, but not all those pieces are created with the same precision that goes into making a good one.

And with all the intentions to help you choose just the best, we have made a helpful guide. Our guide will increase your understanding of what features you should be looking at while buying an acoustic guitar.

  • Larger Soundboard – a soundboard is responsible for the quality and clarity of the music produced. And a larger soundboard creates warm and deep music that is also loud.
  • Accurate Size – not all acoustic guitars are the same size because not all hands are the same size. Thus, a good acoustic guitar is the one that fits your hands.
  • Slim Neck – one of the most important thing while playing any musical instrument is the ease with which it can be held. And if a guitar has a slim neck, it is easier to hold and strum the piece.
  • Solid Wood Top – an acoustic guitar with a solid wood top will always have better tonal quality than a laminated top acoustic guitar.
  • Smaller Neck Width – a beginner’s acoustic guitar cannot be the one that has a wide neck. Smaller neck width means that the frets will fall close to the fingers. Which is why, such guitars are easy for finger practicing.
  • Type of Strings – there are two types of strings in an acoustic guitar – nylon and steel. While nylon strings produce soft music, steel strings are ideal for creating bright and sharp music. So, choose accordingly.
  • Quality of Wood – quality of wood largely seals the fate of a guitar’s musicality. Guitars made of high-quality tonewoods like cedar, rosewood, maple, and mahogany are better. It is because these woods create a brighter and clearer sound.
  • Number of Strings – acoustic guitars can have 6 strings and 12 strings. Choose the strings depending upon how many complex features can you handle easily. However, use a 6 string guitar towards the start.
  • Low Action Guitars – low action guitars are best because the gap between the strings and frets is optimal in such guitars. This reduces the force needed to press the string towards the frets in order to produce perfect sound.
  • High-Quality Top Bracing – a good acoustic guitar should have a high-quality top bracing. This is because top bracing controls vibrations created by the strings.

These are the few key features that make an acoustic guitar a good musical instrument with a good tonal quality. And now that you know the features to look forward to, it is time you should also learn about two minor differences between acoustic guitars. Primarily, because these differences are the key factors that not just help in choosing a good guitar, but a guitar that is useful.

Steel Strings Vs Nylon Strings

By now you already know that nylon string acoustic guitars produce classical folk tunes. And as for country music fans, steel string acoustic guitars are what you need.

But what needs more focus here is, nylon strings produce a deep and soft sound. And steel strings produce sharper, clearer, louder, and brighter sound of the two.

String type is also necessary because nylon strings cannot be replaced with steel strings, and vice versa, later on.

6 Strings Vs 12 Strings

A certain fact that you know by now is, a 6 string acoustic guitar is for beginners. And a 12 string acoustic guitar is for professionals.

This basic classification is important because a 12 string guitar has multiple features. And those features are an absolute waste for someone who is still learning the basics.

However, other than the features listed above, acoustic guitars can also be segregated into different types according to their size. There are a total of 9 types that we have listed below.

  • Dreadnought Guitars – are the most recommended of all acoustic guitars for beginners and blue players. They have a larger soundboard and a 14 frets fingerboard.
  • Concert Guitars – are generally smaller with a lower bout. They are portable and can produce brighter to mid-range tunes.
  • Grand Concert Guitars – are larger than concert guitars, but still not full-sized. They are used to produce mid-range to louder sounds in order to cater to a larger audience.
  • Auditorium Guitars – are mid-sized orchestra guitars with a large soundboard and smaller waist. They have different features to control the volume.
  • Grand Auditorium Guitars – are larger than most acoustic guitars and have more features that can accommodate different music styles.
  • Jumbo Guitars – are also known as cowboy guitars. They are mostly 17 inches long and produce deeper and louder sound.
  • Travel Guitars – are portable outdoor guitars with a smaller fretboard. They are the most recommended acoustic guitars of all for people with small hands.
  • Mini-Acoustic Guitars – are also known as backpackers guitars and have 18 to 20 frets. They are generally characterized by a wider neck and a narrow body.
  • Cutaway Guitars – are musician guitars with more frets and a large soundboard. But their neck is designed in such a way that the frets are still within finger reach.

These are almost all the necessary things that one should know about acoustic guitars. So, moving ahead, we have a list of top 5 budget guitars that will not cost more than 300 dollars. And the best thing is, none of our recommended products have compromised quality.

Final Thoughts

Good acoustic guitars should always be aesthetically built so that the sound produced is sweet and melodious. Any piece that is made without careful supervision is incapable of producing clear sound. The one thing that you should always focus on – other than budget – is the variation. And as long as you keep in mind the features that we listed above, you’ll be able to find a suitable guitar. Even if not from our list of top 5 budget guitars, then beyond it.

Damilola

Damilolai has been writing about music for the past 7 years before joining musicgroupies.com team. When he's not working he loves going to the park with his two Jack Russell Terrier's Joe and Bells.
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