Acoustic vs Electric Guitar: Complete guide for beginners


Guitars are a wonderful way to get your creative side to work. And choosing the right kind of guitar for your first-ever lessons is super important. One request we often get from our readers is a showdown of acoustic vs electric guitar. Which is better for the average beginner and learner? Which one’s easier to learn and what not?

So today, we will be doing a rundown on all the things to need to know about the beginner guitar, and so much more! Stay with us and read along as we cover everything down to the smallest details in the quest to select the best guitar for you. Ready to find out?

Let’s discuss on Acoustic vs Electric Guitar!

Before we get to the real deal, it is very important that you know what you are dealing with in terms of the 2 types of guitars. Understanding the features, similarities, and differences of each guitar is the first and most crucial step to choosing better. Take a look at the most basic feature of each type of guitar!


Acoustic. The name itself gives an idea that this instrument is able to make sounds without the use of electricity or amplifier. An acoustic guitar is hands down one of the most popular and widely used guitars there is.

It is a very basic and simple guitar in terms of construction and operation which is one of the many reasons why it is always the first choice for beginners and learners. Having said that, these bad boys aren’t anywhere near basic in terms of performance.

Acoustic guitars are very versatile and extremely sought after by even the most expert players and rock stars. An acoustic guitar can be used to play a wide variety of genres but is specifically great for pop and contemporary.

This type of guitars is usually less expensive than your electric or other types of guitars too so they make for an ideal guitar for beginners on a low budget.

Electric guitar

Now for the electric guitars. Electric, just from the name of it, gives away that it needs electricity and an amplifier in its operation. This guitar has hands-on of the most popular types of guitar there is and has pretty much revolutionized the guitar arena ever since its arrival in the 1920s.

Lessons from Julliard & Oberlin Musicians at Virtu.Academy

Electric guitars use a transducer called pickups to converts the strummed string vibrations into electric signals. These signals are then sent to the speaker that amp up the signals. Those amped up signals are what we hear!

Mind you, that without the transducer and the amp, we wouldn’t be hearing much from an electric guitar at all. Why? Find out!

acoustic or electric guitar
Acoustic vs Electric Guitar! Are you confused about which one to choose?

Similarities and Differences

This is where it gets very important for every reader: understanding the similarities and differences. The good news is that finding similarities and differences between the 2 types of guitars is very easy and obvious. Take a look!


The first common thing between the 2 types of guitars is that both use 6 strings. Also, there are some other physical components like tuning pegs, fretboard, neck, bridge, guitar body, etc are similar which works the same way for both. Yeah, that’s pretty much it, really. 


Now, let’s take a look at the differences between the 2 types of guitars which is far more evident and obvious. The first difference is the most eye-catching, and this is the construction. The acoustic guitar is a bit bulkier and boxy whereas electric guitar is sleek and slender.

However, the most important difference in construction is that the acoustic guitar will have a hollow hole in its body. This allows the strumming and plucking to automatically and self-amplified without the need of any amplifiers.

On the other hand, an electric guitar has no hollow in its body whatsoever. It would produce almost no sound output without its transducer and amp.

  • Construction
    • Bulky and boxy in acoustic
    • Sleek and slender in electric
  • Sound box
    • Acoustic is self-amplifying thanks to its deep hollow body with a soundhole
    • The most electric guitars have no soundhole; needs electricity, transducer, and an amp to produce sounds
  • Overall difference in sound output
    • Brighter and more vivid in acoustic
    • High pitch, loud and sophisticated

What is using an acoustic guitar like for a beginner?

The acoustic guitar is what most of us would call a basic guitar. It is basic, simple, and usually considered a great beginner guitar. Here, you can check our Epiphone Dr-100 Review which is a good choice for your first time experience.

However, there are a few things that you must know before you choose an acoustic. An acoustic guitar uses steel strings which is one of the hardest in terms of touch. This will make your fingers sore and uncomfortable for the first few days of learning.

Nonetheless, mind you that this discomfort lasts only up to a day or two. You may also have to learn to read and break down chord diagrams to make the most out of an acoustic guitar.

What is an acoustic guitar good for?

An acoustic guitar is great for a wide variety of genres. It can play subtle and loud and can do head-banging rock too. At the end of the day, it depends on your expertise and talent. Having said that keeping the construction and sound profile of an acoustic guitar in mind, it is specifically great for genres such as country, bluegrass, and folk.

What is using an electric like for a beginner?

It’s pretty darn cool and happening, we’d say. Your favorite rock stars are using it, the most popular guys in school are using it. Electric guitars almost always have this rock star and attraction value to them. It makes you feel like hot stuff, we know. We’ve been there. But that’s not all an electric guitar is good for. This instrument is genuinely fun and convenient to use. It is slender, lightweight, and far easier to take control of.

What is an electric guitar good for?

An electric guitar, thanks to its construction and sound profile, can provide a wide array of sound tones and output. It can be used to play subtle and soft but is most ideal for rock, metal, blues, and modern country.

So! Which one is easier to learn?

Alright! Now for the real showdown of Acoustic vs Electric guitar.

artistworks online music lessons

Which one’s better? Which one’s easier to learn?

ANSWER: They are both great! And no guitar is more superior to the other. One thing you have to know here is that each of the 2 guitars come from different backgrounds and offers different sound profile, so comparing the 2 in terms of performance is not just difficult, but is also invalid and illogical! They are both great guitars and the one you choose depends on the genre you’d like yourself to play.

As for ease of learning, we have to admit that an electric guitar is a tad easier to master than an acoustic guitar. The construction makes it easier to hold and use.

Next, you have the prerequisites like the transducer and amp that make making music through so much more loud and effortless. But most importantly, an electric guitar simply far easier to control and play around with!

Let’s watch a video discussing the same!

How to choose an electric guitar?

  • Size and weight: Being able to comfortably hold a guitar is probably the first thing you need to take care of. Try and get an electric guitar is just the right size and weight. Anything too heavy can wear your arms out and anything too light will get you off-balance. Hold it, put it on and play it for a while and you get the idea of the size and weight you’d need. Also, be extra aware if you are left-handed since most guitars are designed to be used for right-handed people.
  • Body: A solid body is exactly what it sounds like. It is a solid slab of wood. Although the music profile of a solid body does not produce much resonance, like hollow-body ones, it is still impactful and bold. A hollow-body electric guitar, much like an acoustic, has a soundhole. As a result, it has resonance and can produce deep, rich sound output. Semi-hollow as the name suggests already is a cross between solid and hollow-body guitars. They have more resonance than a solid body but less than a hollow. Semi-hollow bodies are constructed with a solid center wood block that adds stability and cuts down on feedback.
  • Pickup: Single-body pickup is the original and most basic design of pickup there is. It involves a single magnet with fine wire wrapped around it which creates a magnetic field that captures the vibrations from the strings converting them into an electronic signal. Single-body pickups produce clear crisp sound. Humbucker pickups are specifically designed to deal with hum as well as offering sound profile beyond those of single-coil models. This type of pickup has a thicker, louder, more powerful tone when compared to single-coils. Piezo pickups are used to trigger synthesizer or digital sound much like an electronic keyboard. It is usually used to replicate the sound profile of an acoustic guitar.
  • Tonewoods: Some of the many kinds of wood used in the making of an electric guitar are mahogany, rosewood, ebony, ash, alder, nato, and so on. Each wood can influence and manipulate the sound of your electric guitar in terms of resonance, loudness, crispness, and so on.
  • Don’t drool over brands. Buy quality, not name: Believe us when we say that there are non-brand guitars that work as well, if not better, than your branded or high-end ones. We are not dissing brands by any means but there some great guitars out that are hardly known. So, don’t fall for the brand trap. Let’s your ears be the judge.


Electric guitars. They can be as cheap as peanuts and go up to as expensive as your half your life savings. Yep. But you don’t want to be on either side of the spectrum. For a beginner, a balance between learn-able quality and affordability is the key. For you, we’d recommend an entire electric pack which includes a guitar, an amp, cables, picks, bag, a tuner, a few extra strings, and possibly a learner’s DVD of some sort. These packs can start anywhere from $200, but for a more high-quality pack, we recommend you look at anywhere around $500 or above.


And there you have it, folks! Our final and honest solution to the whole acoustic vs electric guitar showdown. We would once again like to clarify that both of these guitars are great stuff.

At the end of the day, it is all about your choice of genre, commitment to learning, and sincerity towards the art that makes the learning easy or tough. But yes, electric guitars do have an upper hand in terms of convenience. Something most beginners would appreciate.

With this said and done, it’s a wrap to our take on acoustic vs electric guitar. Hope you found all the help you needed. We will catch you again soon. Take care!

Scroll to Top