Buying Guide: Acoustic Guitars (Quick Guide)
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While there are many factors to consider when purchasing an acoustic guitar, this brief overview will help you understand the most critical ones to help you make an informed purchase that you'll be happy with. This guide pertains to steel-string acoustic guitars.
First and foremost, you should consider what your plans are for your new acoustic guitar, and how much you can afford to spend on one. Are you an experienced player looking to move up to a higher quality instrument? Perhaps you are a beginner who wants an inexpensive instrument to learn on. Most likely, the more you invest in an acoustic guitar, the higher the quality of the instrument will be. This doesn't mean that all inexpensive acoustic guitars are low quality. Thanks to modern manufacturing techniques, you now have a wide selection of highly playable, low-cost acoustic guitars to choose from. By knowing the most important elements that make up a playable, nice-sounding acoustic guitar, you can maximize what you get for your budget.
Numerous variations of body sizes and styles exist amongst manufacturers of acoustic guitars. Aside from the way these different body styles feel to the player, they differ sonically as well. In the most general terms, the larger the soundboard, the more low-end tone and volume the guitar will generate. The traditional dreadnought body style provides a large soundboard, while narrow-waisted styles such as grand concert and jumbo combine large soundboard with increased playing comfort. Most manufacturers make acoustic guitars to accommodate smaller players as well.
The top of an acoustic guitar is the most important element to its sound. You will often see the words solid or laminated used when describing an acoustic guitar's top. A solid top typically uses two single-ply pieces of wood, whereas a laminate top is created of several thin plies of wood that are pressed together.
Laminate tops tend to be less affected by changes in temperature and humidity, and generally an acoustic guitar with a laminate top will be more affordable than one with a solid top. A solid top might cost you a bit more but will offer greater resonance and projection.
The final things to consider before purchasing an acoustic guitar are personal decisions. Be sure that the guitar you select is one you're comfortable with, whether you're sitting or standing while playing. Find a guitar that responds best to the way you play. And most of all, buy an acoustic guitar that sounds best to your ears. Whether it's a $3,000 Gibson or a $300 Rogue, you're going to get a lot more enjoyment from an acoustic guitar that produces the sound you want.
Finding the right acoustic guitar is easy here. We have a huge selection from the top acoustic guitar manufacturers, and our Dual 45-Day Guarantees ensure your complete satisfaction and the lowest possible price.