Guide: Top 18 Best Guitars For Beginners in 2024

Learning to play the guitar is an exciting experience. Having the best guitar for beginners gives you the best chance of success.  That’s why I’ve compiled a list of the 18 best guitars for beginners in this article. Below are my top 5 choices.

best overall
Squier Affinity Series Stratocaster HH

Squire Affinity Series Stratocaster HH

The Squier Affinity Series Stratocaster HH is a great first guitar, combining build quality and still great value for money. It has all the features needed for you to learn and enjoy playing guitar.

best Classic
Epiphone Power Players Les Paul

Epiphone Power Players Les Paul

If you’re after the classic sound, then the Epiphone Power Players Les Paul delivers. This is a great option for a beginner guitarist to get that classic tone, feel and look. You’ll have a great time learning on ths guitar!

best Modern
Yamaha Pacifica 112V

Yamaha Pacifica 112V

Are you looking for a modern option? Then the Yamaha Pacifica 112V is your axe. This guitar features high quality modern build but on a decent budget. It’s a fun guitar to play and makes it feel easy to learn proper technique on it.

best value
Squier Bullet Mustang HH

Squier Bullet Mustang HH

The Squier Bullet Mustang HH is a great choice for beginners. It’s another easy guitar to play, with a wide range of tones and that classic Mustang look. The c-shaped neck is great if that’s what you like, and it comes with jumbo size frets.

best Rock & Metal
Jackson JS22 Dinky

Jackson JS22 Dinky

If you’re into metal, then look no more. This is the weapon of your choice. The Jackson JS22 Dinky is an incredibly versatile guitar for the price. And it looks the part too. You’ll be shredding through all your favorite riffs on this bad boy in no time!

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Guide: Top 18 Best Guitars For Beginners in 2024


  • Guitar Variety: Explore various guitar types, including acoustic, electric, classical, semi-acoustic, and bass guitars, each suited for different music styles and purposes.
  • Electric Guitars: Ideal for rock, pop, and blues, electric guitars offer versatility in tone, thinner necks, and are beginner-friendly.
  • Acoustic Guitars: Great for beginners, they produce natural sounds without amplifiers, making them versatile for country, folk, and bluegrass genres.
  • Classical Guitars: These nylon-string guitars are perfect for classical and flamenco styles due to their gentle feel and wider necks.
  • Semi-Acoustic Guitars: Combining features of both acoustic and electric, they’re popular among jazz and blues musicians for their warm, rich sound.
  • Bass Guitars: Essential for rhythm and depth, bass guitars come in electric and acoustic varieties and are crucial in various music genres.

Best Guitars for Beginners

As a beginner, you will need an instrument that is easy to play and offers quality sound and craftsmanship to support your growth as a guitarist. 

I started playing guitar at 12 years old, and the first guitar I bought was a used Gibson Les Paul copy, similar to one of the options I cover in this article. That seemingly small decision at such a young age led to my eventual professional career as a composer and producer.

With the vast array of guitars available on the market today, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. This article will help guide you through some of the best guitars for beginners so you can get started on the right foot. There are many great options!

Understanding your needs and preferences is essential when selecting your first guitar. It is crucial to consider factors such as your budget, preferred music genre, and desired instrument size and style. 

Here are my top picks.

Top Picks for Beginner Electric Guitars

1. Squier Affinity Series Stratocaster HH

Squier Affinity Series Stratocaster HH

The Squier Affinity Series Stratocaster HH is an excellent choice for beginners looking for a versatile and iconic electric guitar.

This model features a double humbucker pickup configuration, providing a thicker, warmer sound than a single-coil pickup. This makes it particularly suitable for genres like rock and blues.

The guitar’s solid body and bolt-on neck ensure durability and easy playability, while the rosewood fingerboard provides a comfortable and smooth playing experience.

The Affinity Series Stratocaster HH maintains the classic Stratocaster body shape, offering a stylish look and impressive performance. With its affordable price point and high-quality build, this guitar is a fantastic option for those starting their musical journey.

2. Epiphone Power Players Les Paul

Epiphone Power Players Les Paul

The Epiphone Power Players Les Paul is an excellent alternative for those who prefer a more classic rock sound.

This model comes with an ebony fingerboard and a gig bag, strap, picks, and cable at a very attractive price. With its dual humbucker pickups, you’ll get a thicker, warmer sound than single coils.

Though it’s heavier than the Fender Stratocaster, its playability and tonal options make it perfect for beginners who are rock music fans.

3. Yamaha Pacifica 112V

Yamaha Pacifica 112V

Finally, the Yamaha Pacifica 112V is an outstanding option for beginners who want a versatile, high-quality electric guitar without breaking the bank.

It features single-coil pickups in the neck and middle positions and a humbucker in the bridge position, providing various tonal options. The bolt-on neck and rosewood fingerboard contribute to its playability, ensuring a comfortable experience for new players.

4. Squier Bullet Mustang HH

Squier Bullet Mustang HH

The Squier Bullet Mustang HH is an excellent choice for beginners looking for a versatile, easy-to-play electric guitar.

This model features a compact and lightweight body, making it comfortable for new players. It comes with two humbucker pickups that deliver a wide range of tones, suitable for various music genres. The “C”-shaped neck profile and medium jumbo frets offer a comfortable playing feel.

With its solid build quality and affordable price, the Squier Bullet Mustang HH is a reliable choice for those starting their musical journey on the electric guitar.

5. Jackson JS22 Dinky

Jackson JS22 Dinky

The Jackson JS22 Dinky is a fantastic choice for beginners in the rock and metal genres.

This guitar features a sleek, lightweight design that makes it comfortable for beginners. It comes with two high-output humbuckers that deliver a powerful, gritty tone, perfect for those heavy riffs and solos.

The JS22 Dinky also features a fast-action neck, which makes it easier for beginners to play and improve their skills. This guitar offers great value for its price, making it an excellent choice for beginners.

6. Ibanez GRX20

Ibanez GRX20

The Ibanez GRX20 is another excellent option for beginners. This guitar is part of the GIO series, developed for players who want Ibanez quality in a more affordable package.

The GRX20 features a sleek neck and fast action, making it easy for beginners to play. It comes with two howling humbuckers—a Powersound 1 at the neck and a Powersound 2 at the bridge—that deliver a grinding, gritty tone.

The standard rocking tremolo allows for dive bomb effects, adding to the fun of playing.

The Ibanez GRX20 not only looks and plays better than many other guitars in its price range but also undergoes the same rigorous inspection, set-up, and warranty as Ibanez’s more expensive models.

7. Fender Player Series Stratocaster

Fender Player Series Stratocaster

The Fender Player Series Stratocaster is a fantastic choice for beginners looking for a versatile and iconic electric guitar.

With its single-coil pickups, you can achieve a wide range of tones, making it suitable for various genres. The bolt-on neck construction ensures easy playability, while the rosewood fingerboard provides a comfortable and smooth playing experience.

When considering a Fender Stratocaster for a beginner, the Squier Affinity Stratocaster should also be on your radar. It has many of the same iconic features but comes at a more affordable price point.

These are our top picks for beginner electric guitars, each offering their unique features and benefits. Whichever guitar you choose, remember the most important factor is that it feels comfortable and enjoyable to play.

As you practice and grow as a musician, your playing experience will only improve with time.

Top Picks for Beginner Acoustic Guitars

This section will discuss four top picks for beginner acoustic guitars: Yamaha FG, Fender CD-60S, Ibanez AW, and Yamaha C. These guitars are widely recognized for their excellent quality, sound, and value, making them a great choice for beginners.

8. Yamaha FG800M

Yamaha FG800M

The Yamaha FG800M is another excellent option for beginners.

This acoustic guitar features a solid spruce top and nato/okume back and sides, offering a balanced tone with strong lows and mids. The matte finish is stylish, and the traditional Western body provides a comfortable playing experience.

Known for its durability, sound quality, and value for money, the Yamaha FG800M is a reliable choice for those starting their musical journey on the acoustic guitar.

9. Fender CD-60S All-Mahogany

Fender CD-60S All-Mahogany

The Fender CD-60S All-Mahogany is a top pick for a quality acoustic guitar for beginners.

This model features a solid mahogany top and mahogany back and sides, delivering a warm and rich tone. The “Easy-to-Play” neck shape and rolled fingerboard edges provide a comfortable playing feel.

With its excellent build quality and affordable price, the Fender CD-60S All-Mahogany offers great value, making it an ideal choice for those starting their musical journey on the acoustic guitar.

10. Ibanez AW

Ibanez AW

The Ibanez AW series is another great option for novice guitarists.

These guitars offer a solid top and quality construction, producing well-rounded sound with excellent projection. They are comfortable to play, and the neck profile is perfect for beginner’s hands.

With their good-quality hardware and fine craftsmanship, Ibanez AW guitars are a reliable choice for those starting their musical path.

Top Picks for Beginner Classical Guitars

11. Yamaha C40II

Yamaha C40II

The Yamaha C40II is an excellent choice for beginners looking into classical guitar.

This full-sized nylon-string guitar is known for its exceptional playability, making it perfect for beginners. It features a spruce top and mahogany back and sides, contributing to its warm and balanced tone.

The C40II is also praised for its durability and affordability, making it a popular choice for those starting their musical journey.

12. Cordoba C12 SP

Cordoba C12 SP

The Cordoba C12 SP is a high-quality classical guitar that offers a step up for beginners ready to advance their skills.

It features a solid European spruce top and Indian rosewood back and sides, which produce a rich, resonant sound. The guitar’s elevated fingerboard is designed for easy playability, while its lattice bracing provides a powerful, vibrant tone.

Although it’s a bit more expensive than other beginner models, the Cordoba C12 SP’s superior craftsmanship and sound make it a worthwhile investment.

Top Picks for Beginner Semi-Hollow Body Guitars

13. Grote Semi-Hollow Body

Grote Semi-Hollow Body

The Grote Semi-Hollow Body guitar is a fantastic choice for beginners interested in exploring the unique tonal qualities of semi-hollow body guitars.

This guitar features a beautiful semi-hollow body design with an F-hole, contributing to its warm, resonant sound. The Grote Semi-Hollow Body guitar has two humbucker pickups, offering many tonal possibilities.

Its comfortable neck and smooth fingerboard make it easy for beginners to navigate, and its construction ensures it will be a reliable instrument as you progress in your musical journey.

14. Ibanez Artcore AF55 Hollowbody

Ibanez Artcore AF55 Hollowbody

The Ibanez Artcore AF55 Hollowbody guitar is another excellent option for beginners. Known for its rich, warm tone and impressive sustain, this guitar is perfect for those interested in jazz, blues, or rock.

The AF55 features a maple top, back, and sides, contributing to its clear, vibrant sound. Its slim neck and broad fretboard offer comfortable playability, making it easier for beginners to form chords and play melodies.

With its high-quality construction and stylish design, the Ibanez Artcore AF55 Hollowbody is a great investment for any aspiring guitarist.

Top Picks for Beginner Bass Guitars

Choosing the right bass guitar as a beginner is crucial for your learning experience. The instrument should be comfortable to play, produce a good sound, and be within your budget. Here are two top picks for beginner bass guitars. 

15. Ibanez GSRM20 Mikro

Ibanez GSRM20 Mikro

The Ibanez GSRM20 Mikro is an excellent choice for beginners, especially those with smaller hands or younger players.

This bass guitar features a shorter scale length, making it easier to navigate the fretboard and play notes. Despite its compact size, the GSRM20 Mikro doesn’t compromise on sound quality. It features a pair of Ibanez’s Dynamix pickups that deliver a punchy, full-bodied tone, perfect for various music genres.

The build quality of this bass is solid, ensuring durability and longevity. With its comfortable playability and affordable price, the Ibanez GSRM20 Mikro is a reliable choice for those starting their musical journey on the bass.

16. Squier Mini Precision Bass

Squier Mini Precision Bass

The Squier Mini Precision Bass is another fantastic option for novice bassists.

This model is a scaled-down version of the iconic Fender Precision Bass, retaining the classic tone and style in a more manageable size for beginners or players with smaller hands.

It features a split single-coil pickup that delivers a powerful and punchy tone, capturing the essence of the classic P-Bass sound. The “C”-shaped neck profile and 9.5″-radius fingerboard offer a comfortable playing feel.

The Squier Mini Precision Bass is a great learning instrument and provides a solid foundation for developing your skills and transitioning to a full-sized bass in the future.

Guitars for Smaller Hands and Younger Players

Finding the right guitar for younger players or those with smaller hands can be challenging. However, there are options available that cater to these specific needs. This section will discuss a popular guitar model designed for those with small hands or younger players.

17. Squier Mini Stratocaster

Squier Mini Stratocaster

The Squier Mini Stratocaster is a compact and affordable version of the iconic Fender Stratocaster, making it an excellent choice for beginners or younger players.

Despite its smaller size, it doesn’t compromise on quality or sound. It features a poplar body, a “C”-shaped maple neck, and a 20-fret fingerboard, providing a comfortable playing experience.

The three single-coil pickups offer a wide range of tones, allowing you to explore different music genres. The hardtail bridge enhances tuning stability, ensuring your practice sessions are uninterrupted.

The Squier Mini Stratocaster is a testament that great things can come in small packages. It’s an ideal instrument for those starting their musical journey or for seasoned players seeking a travel-friendly option.

18. Martin LX1 Little Martin

Martin LX1 Little Martin

The Martin LX1 Little Martin Acoustic Guitar is an excellent choice for those with small hands or younger players looking for a comfortable, easy-to-play instrument.

This guitar’s smaller body and shorter scale length makes it feel great in your hands and make it easier to play chords and navigate the fretboard.

The Martin LX1 Little Martin was created with travel in mind, making it a fantastic option for those constantly on the go. Its compact design, sound quality, and durability make it ideal for taking on the road, whether for lessons, jam sessions, or performances.

When choosing a guitar for smaller hands or younger players, finding one that will be comfortable and easy to play is crucial. The Martin LX1 Little Martin’s design is perfect for meeting these needs, ensuring you can focus on playing and enjoying music rather than struggling with an ill-fitting instrument.

Understanding Different Types of Guitars

There are many different types of guitars available. 

Acoustic and electric guitars are probably the most familiar since they are commonly used in many musical genres. They both offer unique advantages and learning experiences; selecting the most suitable one is a personal decision.

You might also hear both classical and acoustic guitars often referred to as acoustic guitars, but they are actually two distinctly different instruments, and it’s important to understand this before deciding which type of guitar might fit you best.

We’ll also talk about bass guitars and how they differ from regular guitars.

Electric Guitars

Electric guitars have solid bodies and rely on pickups and amplifiers to produce sound. The solid-body design gives you more control over sustain and feedback, while the amplifier allows you to experiment with different tones and effects. You might find electric guitars easier to play as a beginner due to their thinner necks and lighter strings. They are ideal for rock, pop, and blues styles.

Acoustic Guitars

Acoustic guitars are great for beginners because they don’t require additional equipment like amps and produce a natural sound when you strum or pluck the strings. They typically have steel strings and a hollow body, which resonates and amplifies the sound. Acoustic guitars are versatile and suitable for various music styles, such as country, folk, and bluegrass.

Classical Guitars

Classical guitars might be the right choice if you’re looking for a softer sound. These guitars use nylon strings, which are gentler on your fingers than steel strings. Classical guitars have a wider neck, allowing for increased spacing between strings. They’re perfect for playing classical and flamenco music but versatile enough to accommodate other styles.

Semi-Acoustic Guitars

Also known as hollow-body guitars, semi-acoustic guitars combine features of both acoustic and electric guitars. They have a hollow body like an acoustic guitar and pickups to connect with an amplifier. Semi-acoustic guitars offer a warm, rich sound and can be played unplugged or amplified. They are popular among jazz and blues guitarists.

Bass Guitars

Bass guitars have four strings, tuned lower than the typical six-string guitar. Bassists are crucial in providing a song’s rhythmic foundation and depth. As a beginner, you can choose between electric and acoustic guitars. Electric basses have solid bodies and require an amplifier, while acoustic basses have a hollow body similar to an acoustic guitar, allowing you to play them without an amp.

Choosing the Right Guitar for Your Needs

Size and Body Shape

When looking for the best guitar for beginners, it’s essential to consider the size and body shape. A comfortable fit is crucial to help you build your skills. Consider the following options:

  • Dreadnought: A larger body shape that offers a balanced sound and is suitable for various music genres.
  • Concert: A smaller body shape with a comfortable fit, ideal for fingerpicking and folk music.
  • Parlor: A compact design great for younger players or those with smaller hands, offering a focused sound.

Materials and Build Quality

The materials used in a guitar’s construction play a significant role in its sound and overall quality. Here are some common materials you may come across:

  • Solid spruce top: Provides a bright, responsive sound with excellent projection.
  • Solid cedar top: Delivers a warm, mellow tone, popular for classical and fingerstyle playing.
  • Solid mahogany: Known for its rich, warm sound and mid-range emphasis.
  • Solid top: A guitar with a solid wood top often produces a better sound than those with laminated tops.

Choose a beginner guitar with a solid top and build quality when possible. Solid woods make a difference in tone and durability but may come at a higher price point.

Price and Budget

Finding a guitar that offers great value within your price range is essential. Affordable guitars can provide an excellent playing experience at a reasonable cost, perfect for those just starting. Some factors to keep in mind:

Number one

Price Range

Set a budget before shopping to avoid overspending and watch for sales or discounts.

Number two


Look for a well-built guitar with decent materials, even in the low price range.

Number three


Seek a balance between quality and affordability, ensuring you get a good investment instrument.

Additional Considerations and Accessories

Guitar Lessons

As a beginner, investing in guitar lessons is important to build a solid foundation and develop proper technique. There are various formats, such as in-person lessons, online tutorials, instructional books, and DVDs. Make sure to select the method that best suits your learning style.

Regular lessons and practicing consistently will help you progress as a new player and ensure you get the most out of your first guitar. Look for experienced instructors skilled at teaching beginners to maximize the potential of your practice sessions.

Gig Bag

When purchasing your new guitar, don’t forget to include a gig bag in your list of essential accessories. A gig bag will protect your instrument during transportation and storage, ensuring it remains in good condition for years.

Select a gig bag designed specifically for your guitar’s size and shape. Many gig bags have additional pockets for storing accessories like picks, tuners, and sheet music. Look for bags with padding and straps for added comfort while carrying your guitar between practice sessions or performances.

Guitar Maintenance

It’s important to also learn some basic guitar maintenance tasks, like restringing and cleaning your guitar. Here’s a great video on how to change your guitar strings:

Video by Fender showing beginner guitarists first steps of how to change your guitar strings.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to select the right beginner guitar?

When selecting a beginner guitar, consider factors such as your budget, the type of music you’re interested in, and the size of the guitar. Try out the guitar in-person to ensure it feels comfortable in your hands when possible. Look for good playability options; the guitar is easy to fret and play chords on.

What are the top budget-friendly guitars for beginners?

Some top budget-friendly beginner guitars include the Epiphone Les Paul Special, Squier Bullet Mustang HH, Yamaha Pacifica 112V, and Yamaha F335 Acoustic Guitar. Remember that your choice will also depend on whether you want an acoustic or electric guitar.

Is it better to start with an acoustic or electric guitar?

The choice between starting with an acoustic or electric guitar depends on your preferences and musical goals. Acoustic guitars lend themselves well to learning chords and fingerpicking, while electric guitars might be more suitable for those interested in rock or metal genres. Many beginners find acoustic guitars an excellent starting point, as they’re generally more affordable and don’t require additional gear like amplifiers.

Which guitar brands are most suitable for beginners?

Brands such as Yamaha, Epiphone, Squier (a subsidiary of Fender), and Martin offer excellent options for beginners. These brands are known for their great build quality, playability, and sound at affordable price points.

What do users on Reddit recommend for the best beginner acoustic guitar?

Reddit users often recommend brands like Yamaha, Epiphone, and Martin for beginner acoustic guitars. Popular choices include the Yamaha F335, Epiphone DR-100, and Martin’s Little Martin.

What guitar models are popular for beginners at Guitar Center?

At Guitar Center, popular beginner guitar models include the Yamaha FG800, Epiphone Les Paul Special, Squier Bullet Mustang HH, and Fender FA-115 acoustic guitar. It is essential to try out different models in-person to ensure they meet your needs and preferences for sound and comfort.


As a beginner, choosing the right guitar to kickstart your musical journey is essential. While numerous options are available in the market, some standout choices can make your learning experience smoother and more enjoyable.

A great beginner guitar should be easy to play, offer reliable quality, and not break your budget.

Remember, a guitar’s playability and sound quality will impact your learning experience, so carefully weigh the options. Ultimately, the key to becoming a proficient guitarist is practice, dedication, and a passion for music.

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