Every guitar player has their own choice about the best acoustic guitar brands, they have their own favorite guitar brands, and it isn’t really possible to say which brand is going to be the best for you. It’s highly subjective, but a newbie nonetheless would probably want to get a little nudge in the right direction when it comes to their first purchase from the top acoustic guitar brands.
Whether it is the first time purchasing a guitar or not, it’s safer and smarter to go for a guitar brand with an established reputation. The “best” brands for acoustic guitar have decades of expertise in guitar building and have made a name for themselves out in the world throughout the years, producing reliable and great-sounding acoustic instruments.
In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the best brands on the market and what makes them stand out from the rest. So whether you’re in the market for your first acoustic guitar or just looking to upgrade, read on to make your decision perfect.
Best Brands Of Acoustic Guitars
It’s very, very unlikely to go wrong with the excellent design and quality that the top guitar brands have to offer. To help narrow down options for those seeking the right fit, here are some top brands to consider. Whether you’re a beginner or a pro, we have the right acoustic guitar for you!
1. Martin Guitar (C.F. Martin & Co.)
Founder: Christian Frederick Martin | Headquarters: Nazareth, Pennsylvania, United States
Martin has arguably contributed the most to the look and even the sound of acoustic guitars, particularly in the US. This guitar brand was established back in 1833, so its huge role in the guitar market isn’t at all surprising.
Since the early 1800s, this American guitar-making company has specialized in making high-quality finest acoustic guitars that are more or less accessible to enthusiasts. In fact, they innovated the dreadnought shape in an attempt to support the on-stage performance of US county musicians.
Martin guitars are quite popular among enthusiasts and even professionals for their exceptional craftsmanship and quality tone. For example, among the famous users of Martin guitars are Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, Eric Clapton, Tony Rice, Stephen Stills, John Mayer, and even American writer Mark Twain.
There aren’t too many companies from the 1800s operating nowadays. And given that Martin has survived the global economic and political turmoil of the 19th and 20th centuries, you could be pretty sure that their guitars are top-quality.
Even though Martin has lately entered the electric and bass guitar market, it still continues to produce and distribute fine-quality acoustic guitars all over the world. Martin instruments come at all prices, but one thing is constant with them. The quality of their guitars is worth the exorbitant prices they charge.
Martin is a guitar brand exceptionally highly valued and considered one of the best acoustic guitar makers in the world. This American guitar company is credited with bringing the most beautiful designs to the market.
For the traditionalist, a great Martin choice would be the Standard Series D-28 or the HD-28. Both of these models have the classic dreadnought shape and tonewoods.
For an affordable acoustic-electric guitar, try the Martin LX1E. It has a solid Sitka spruce top and mahogany HPL back and sides, and it’s perfect for smaller hands or anyone just starting on guitar.
There are plenty of other great Martin acoustic guitars to choose from, so you can definitely find the perfect one for your needs.
2. Taylor Guitars
Founders: Kurt Listug, Bob Taylor | Headquarters: El Cajon, California, United States
Their instruments are higher up the price ladder – just like it is with Martin guitars – but each of Taylor guitars is certainly worth the price paid thanks to their beautiful sound and excellent build quality.
They’re not only well-crafted, but they also sound amazing no matter what style of music you play. And if you’re someone who’s always on the go, they even have a travel guitar that’s perfect for taking with you wherever you go.
In addition, Taylor provides an ample amount of support to its customers, which is why they have one of the best customer service teams in the business. If you ever need help with your guitar or just want some advice, their team is more than happy to help.
Like Martin, Taylor also primarily focuses on making acoustic guitars, but it experiments with electric instruments as well from time to time.
Highly acclaimed by the working-player class for their customized fit, Taylor acoustic guitars have been widely used by professional musicians onstage as well. Musicians like Taylor Swift, George Strait, Jason Mraz, Ben Harper, and Shawn Mendes all use guitars from Taylor. This brand is considered to be one of the best acoustic guitar brands for professionals.
If you’re looking for the best USA made acoustic guitars then Taylor is one of few top brands to deliver a good option. And for a while now, the company has been producing a series of “best acoustic guitar for the money” products aimed more at the beginner market, like their Baby, Big Baby, and GS Mini guitars. So guitar players of all skill levels should be able to find the right guitar from Taylor.
If you’re looking for an acoustic-electric guitar, the Taylor 214ce Deluxe is a great option. It has a solid Sitka spruce top, layered rosewood back and sides, and a Grand Auditorium body shape that’s perfect for both fingerstyle and strumming.
If you want to go all out, check out the Taylor Custom Shop Master Builder series. These guitars are made with the best tonewoods and features, and they’re limited edition (so you won’t see them at every music shop).
For those looking for a non-electric Taylor guitar, I’d recommend the Academy series. These guitars are designed to be affordable but still sound great.
3. Gibson (Gibson Brands, Inc.)
Founder: Orville H. Gibson | Headquarters: Nashville, Tennessee, United States
Gibson is another popular acoustic guitar brand that has been around for many years. They’ve been manufacturing acoustic guitars since 1894, and they continue to produce some of the superb acoustic guitars in the world.
Back in the days, before coming up with their first acoustic guitar in 1910, Gibson was mainly popular for their mandolins and banjos. However, all of their products were initially rated poorly in the market for their lack of dependability and functionality.
It took a while for the brand to get serious and improve its products to enter the ranks of top contenders in the acoustic industry. Once placed well in the market, Gibson grew unrivaled in brand recognition and has remained so for many years as the best acoustic guitar maker.
Operating for more than a century, Gibson has been rather consistent with its guitar styles and designs, which is one of the things the brand is valued for.
Some of the best-known Gibson acoustic guitar models include the Hummingbird, the Dove, and the Songwriter. These Gibson guitars are known for their high-quality sound, impressive construction, and stunning looks.
B.B. King, Jimmy Page, Neil Young, Alex Lifeson, John Mclaughlin, Robert Johnson, and Brian Jones are some of the top artists who have played Gibson acoustic guitars. Elvis Presley even played a Gibson J-200N acoustic guitar!
Gibson’s best acoustic guitars are the J-200 and Hummingbird. These guitars are both pricey, but they’re worth the investment if you want a guitar that will last for generations.
If you’re looking for an acoustic-electric, try the Gibson Songwriter Deluxe Studio EC. It has a Sitka Spruce top and comes with a built-in Fishman Prefix Plus-T pickup system.
4. Seagull Guitars
Founder: Robert Godin | Headquarters: Montreal, Canada | Parent: Godin Guitars
Many enthusiasts highly value the guitar production of Seagull, even though I can’t say that it is a world-renowned guitar brand. Seagull mostly produces relatively affordable guitars, and it is their quality for the price that has been strongly attracting newbies and experienced players alike.
Seagull was established by Robert Godin in 1982 and is owned by Godin Guitars. Remarkably, Godin Guitars coincidentally is the parent company of LaPatrie, which also is a rather renowned Canadian guitar brand. All in all, even though Seagull is a relatively young guitar company, it has built quite a reputation over the decades of its activity.
What allows for the high quality of Seagull acoustic guitars is that they are all crafted by hand. Needless to say, handmade guitars imply increased attention to detail and the quality of the material.
In addition, Seagull guitars boast that they get their materials from sustainable sources. The company also claims that it uses hydroelectric power for its manufacturing process. If you care about your natural environment, then you’ll probably appreciate Seagull’s approach.
Some of the best-selling guitars from this brand are the S6 Original, Artist Mosaic, and Maritime SWS. So if you are looking for an affordable and high-quality acoustic guitar, Seagull is a great option.
When it comes to budget guitars, the Artist series from Seagull would be the best bang for your buck. These are high-quality, all-solid wood guitars, but they’re a fraction of the price of some of the higher-end models.
If you’re looking for an acoustic-electric guitar, check out the Maritime SWS SG. It has a solid cedar top and a Fishman Sonitone pickup system for great sound when plugged in.
5. Yamaha (Yamaha Corporation)
Founder: Torakusu Yamaha | Headquarters: Hamamatsu, Shizuoka, Japan
Yamaha certainly is an exceptionally experienced guitar producer. This Japanese company manufactures a wide range of musical instruments starting from organs and ending with, of course, fantastic acoustic guitars.
It has been in the industry for more than a century and has manufactured some of the best acoustic guitars. You will find Yamaha acoustic guitars in almost every music store, and they come in a range of different shapes and sizes.
Just like Taylor Guitars, Yamaha also manufactures guitars for all types of musicians – from beginners to experienced guitarists. It produces low-priced acoustic guitars as well as high-end acoustic guitars. If you are looking for an acoustic guitar perfect for your budget, Yamaha will not let you down. Yamaha is well known as one of the best acoustic guitar brands for beginners.
Artists like John Denver, James Taylor, Joe Bonamassa, and Andy Mckee are some notable musicians who played Yamaha acoustic guitars. So, be assured that the guitar you purchase will be good enough for stage performances.
If you’re looking for a great value, check out the Yamaha FG830, which offers features like a solid spruce top, rosewood back and sides, and die-cast tuners – all for around $350. All of these features make it louder and better sounding than most guitars in its price range
If you want to go all-out on a professional model, the Yamaha L-Series TransAcoustic is an excellent choice with a solid Engelmann spruce top, rosewood back and sides, and a 3-band EQ for fine-tuning your sound.
There are plenty of other guitars in the Yamaha guitar lineup though, and you should find a proper one at a modest price range for you regardless of your skill level.
6. Fender (Fender Musical Instruments Corporation)
Founder: Clarence Leonidas Fender | Headquarters: Los Angeles, California, United States
Since the early days of rock ‘n’ roll, Fender guitars have been a mainstay in the hands of both beginner and intermediate players. You can’t doubt Fender’s popularity since their wide range of models suit just about every budget and playing style.
Fender is also known for being very reliable instruments. They make some excellent starter and intermediate guitars. Fender’s acoustics are especially well-suited to blues, country, and folk music.
While they may not have the pizzazz of a high-end Taylor or Martin guitar, they’re always in tune and easy to play. Fender acoustic guitars are also known for their excellent build quality. They’re not the best guitars in the world, but they’re very affordable. You’re likely to get your money’s worth in respect of playability and durability.
One thing that sets Fender guitars apart is their unique sound. They have a pronounced midrange, which can be excellent for country and blues music. Top musicians like Tim Armstrong and Joe Strummer have been playing Fender acoustics for decades.
If you’re looking for a more deluxe acoustic-electric guitar, take a look at the Fender American Acoustasonic Telecaster. This guitar is dripping with quality appointments and features Fender’s new Acoustasonic pickup system, which delivers a beautifully natural sound.
Related Article: To check out more about our honest thoughts on the top five Fender acoustic guitars, continue reading this article.
Founder: Anastasios Stathopoulos | Headquarters: Nashville, Tennessee, United States | Parent: Gibson
Epiphone is a subsidiary of Gibson, and they often make guitars based on Gibson models. Epiphones were once considered “budget” Gibsons. However, Epiphone has developed its unique style and sound over the years.
Epiphones are known for being very affordable, but don’t let the price tag fool you – these guitars can hold their own against much more expensive models. The best Epiphones made with high-quality materials and construction, and they sound great whether you’re playing unplugged or plugged in.
Epiphone was founded in 1873, and they’re one of the oldest guitar brands around. They were involved in manufacturing lutes, fiddles, and mandolins in their early years but started producing guitars from the year 1928. And in 1957, Gibson acquired the company. So they have a lot of experience when it comes to guitar making.
Over the years, they’ve collaborated with some top artists such as Paul McCartney, Bob Dylan, Alex Lifeson, and Ernest Tubb. You can see and hear Paul McCartney playing an Epiphone Texan in this video.
If you’re looking for an affordable but Gibson-style acoustic guitar, the Epiphone Hummingbird is a great choice. It has a solid spruce top and mahogany back and sides, and it sounds great both unplugged and plugged in.
Or, if you’re looking for a vintage-style Epiphone, try the Casino.
8. Guild Guitars (Guild Guitar Company)
Founder: Alfred Dronge | Headquarters: Oxnard, California, United States | Parent: Córdoba Music Group
The Guild Guitar Company began in the 1950s and quickly gained a reputation as a builder of high-quality, player-centric acoustic guitars. Their guitars are often compared to the guitars of Martin and Gibson, and many pro players swear by their Guild acoustics.
Guild makes different acoustic guitars, from small folk models to jumbo acoustics. They’re best known for their American-made models, but they also have a line of imported guitars that are often more affordable.
Guild acoustics are typically well-crafted and designed for comfort and playability. Many models feature dovetail neck joints, 12″-radius fingerboards, and bone nuts and saddles for superior tone.
Guild is also best known for its archtop guitars played by jazz and blues musicians. However, they make great acoustic guitars for any musician. Guild acoustics are well-made and sound great, whether strumming away or fingerpicking.
If you’re looking for a comfortable, player-centric guitar, Guild is a great choice. I’d recommend the F-50 or the D-120. These acoustics are durable, well-made, and sound amazing. They’re perfect for any musician looking for an affordable, high-quality acoustic guitar.
If you are looking for a pro-level acoustic guitar, check out Guild’s American-made models. The best of the best include the D-55 and the 12 string F-1512. These acoustics are incredibly responsive and offer a wide range of tone colors. They’re perfect for any musician who wants an amazing acoustic guitar that will last a lifetime.
9. Takamine Guitars (Takamine Co. Ltd.)
Founder: Ohzone | Headquarters: Nakatsugawa, Gifu, Japan
Takamine, a Japanese company, has been building guitars since the 1960s and is known for their no-nonsense approach to quality. Due to reliability and exceptional sound, their guitars are often used by professional and amateur musicians.
Takamine was one of the initial companies to make acoustic-electric guitars, and their experience in this field has paid dividends. Though they are known for their acoustic guitars, their electric guitars are also in existence.
Their guitars are often thought of as being built to withstand the rigors of stage use. They’re also known as a fine choice for intermediate and advanced players. Takamine acoustics usually don’t have the same level of ornamentation as Martin or Taylor models, but they sound fantastic all the same.
Takamine guitars are used by various professional musicians, including Blake Shelton, Garth Brooks, Vince Gill, and Toby Keith. So, you can be sure that you’re getting a guitar that’s been road-tested and approved by some of the best players in the world.
Takamine has a guitar for everyone, but my favorites are the G Series acoustics. These affordable guitars are well-built and sound great, making them perfect for both stage and studio use.
The G Series offers a wide range of body styles, including classical, dreadnoughts, traditional grand concerts, and jumbos. My top pick from the series is the GJ72CE-NAT – an all-solid wood guitar with a great sound at an excellent price.
Founder: Friedrich Gretsch | Headquarters: Savannah, Georgia, United States
Gretsch is an American brand that’s best known for its hollow and semi-hollow body electric guitars. However, they do make a few steel-string acoustic guitars that are worth mentioning.
Gretsch guitars have a beautiful sound which makes them perfect for jazz and blues music. They also offer a wide variety of models, so there’s obviously something for everyone in the Gretsch lineup.
The company started off making banjos, tambourines, and drums in 1883 but soon switched to guitars. Currently, they are producing mainly electric and acoustic guitars, ukuleles, and drum kits. What makes Gretsch so popular? The answer is simple: the unique sound it creates.
The brand is often credited with bringing back the “country” sound in music and has been used by legends like Chet Atkins, Duane Eddy, and George Harrison.
Gretsch guitars are well-known for their bright tone and resonant sound. If you’re in search of an acoustic guitar with a bit of twang, Gretsch is the brand for you.
One of my favorite Gretsch guitars is the G5022CE Rancher Jumbo Cutaway acoustic-electric guitar. It has a really admirable sound and a cool, unique look.
Another great option for beginners is the Gretsch G9500 Jim Dandy Flat Top acoustic guitar. It’s a simple, no-frills guitar that sounds great for country and folk music.
What makes a great acoustic guitar brand?
There are a ton of great acoustic guitar brands ranked out there, but it can be tough to determine which one is right for you. You may be wondering what sets the best brands apart from the rest.
Some factors make an acoustic guitar brand stand out from the rest. The best guitar brands are known for their quality construction, a wide variety of styles and models, and great sound. They also offer affordable prices, making them a decent choice for beginner and pro musicians alike. Here we’ll check out each factor that makes an acoustic guitar brand praiseworthy.
One of the most important factors to consider when choosing an acoustic guitar brand is the quality of construction. The best brands use high-quality materials in their guitars, ensuring they sound great and last for years. Materials like mahogany, spruce, and rosewood are often used in the construction of acoustic guitars, giving them a rich, full sound.
Wide range of styles and models
Top acoustic guitar brands also offer a wide range of styles and models to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a traditional dreadnought guitar or something more modern like an acoustic-electric, there’s a guitar brand out there for you. Many brands also offer various size options, making it easy to find the perfect guitar for any musician.
Great sound quality
Of course, the most vital factor when choosing an acoustic guitar is its sound. The best guitar brands are known for their great sound, making them a favorite choice for musicians of all levels. Acoustic guitars tend to have a warmer, richer sound than electric guitars, making them a great choice for folk, country, and other genres.
Affordability is another major factor to consider when choosing an acoustic guitar brand. The best brands deliver guitars at different price points, making it easy for beginners and pros alike to find the perfect guitar for their budget.
Here affordability does not mean cheap quality. The top brands use high-quality materials in their guitars, so you can be sure you’re getting a great instrument no matter what your budget may be.
Of course, you can’t look for the same quality from all nice acoustic guitar brands. Some brands are familiar with their high-end guitars, while others are more affordable. It’s essential to do your research before you buy and make sure you’re getting a guitar from a brand you can trust.
Excellent customer service
Finally, a great acoustic guitar brand should offer excellent customer service. If you have any questions or problems with your guitar, you should be able to count on the brand’s customer service department to help you out. Make sure to read reviews before you buy to see what other musicians have had to say about a brand’s customer service.
So, there you have it! Our list of the best acoustic guitar brands for every musician. Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been playing for years, these brands will have something perfect for you. Happy strumming!