Best Acoustic Guitar Under $500: Top Affordable Picks for 2024

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Acoustic guitars are an essential tool for both budding and seasoned musicians, offering a blend of portability, versatility, and rich sound. In the realm of string instruments, the acoustic guitar stands out for its ability to play a wide range of music genres, from folk to rock, without the need for amplification. For under $500, the market is rich with options that balance quality and affordability, providing an avenue for both beginner and intermediate players to find an instrument that resonates with their style and budget.

The search for the best acoustic guitar under $500 does require attention to certain critical elements. Sound quality, playability, and craftsmanship are paramount. In this price range, we often see guitars made with laminate wood bodies which can affect sound, though some models feature solid tops that can enhance the guitar’s tone. Additionally, the feel of the guitar in your hands—its neck shape, string action, and the accessibility of frets—are all important to ensure a comfortable playing experience.

When considering your purchase, it’s also wise to think about the guitar’s size and shape, as it can impact both the instrument’s tone and your ability to comfortably reach around the body to play. A dreadnought body shape, for example, typically offers a bold, loud sound favored in country and rock music, while a concert or parlor guitar might suit fingerstyle players with its softer tone and smaller body.

We’ve thoroughly explored the options available to identify acoustic guitars that strike the perfect chord within this budget. Our recommendations account for the aspects that matter most—sound quality, construction, comfort, and overall value—enabling us to guide you to a guitar that will not just meet your expectations but possibly exceed them. Moving forward, let’s take a closer look at the top contenders that have made our list, exploring the nuances that might just make one the perfect partner in your musical journey.

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Top Acoustic Guitars Under $500

We know how daunting it can be to find an acoustic guitar that sounds great, feels good, and yet doesn’t break the bank. That’s why we’ve put together a list of the best acoustic guitars available for under $500. Whether you’re a beginner taking your first steps, or a seasoned player looking for a great value, these guitars offer quality sound and playability at an affordable price. Join us as we explore the options that provide the best bang for your buck.

Beginner’s Acoustic Bundle

Best Acoustic Guitar Under 0: Top Affordable Picks for 2024
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If you’re dipping your toes into the world of guitar playing without breaking the bank, this acoustic set is your go-to choice.


  • Full kit with numerous accessories ensures a ready-to-play experience.
  • Easy-to-handle nylon strings make learning less daunting.
  • Ideal size and design cater well to both teenagers and adults.


  • Some may find the carry bag quality lacking.
  • Extra strings provided may not be the most durable.
  • Beginners may outgrow the sound quality as they improve.

Feeling the curve of the guitar and the smooth fretboard, it becomes evident that this model from Best Choice Products is crafted to cater to new musicians. We often worry about the struggle of acquiring necessary accessories when starting, but not with this guitar. From the tuner to the gig bag, everything you need is in one box.

Strumming the first chords, you can’t help but appreciate how gentle the nylon strings are on your fingers. It’s a common hurdle for beginners, the painful initiation to steel strings, but this guitar sidesteps that issue gracefully. The added ease of play encourages longer practice sessions without the discomfort.

You can see and feel the difference with this guitar. Its matte black body not only looks sleek but feels robust, belying its budget-friendly price. However, it’s good to remember this instrument is targeted at beginners and those advancing rapidly in their skill might find the tonal limitations a cue to upgrade.

Squier SA-150

Best Acoustic Guitar Under 0: Top Affordable Picks for 2024

We think the Squier SA-150 is an excellent pick for beginners seeking a dependable and attractive acoustic guitar without breaking the bank.


  • Full, resonant dreadnought tone ideal for various music genres
  • Robust build that can handle frequent use and the inevitable knocks
  • Slim neck design makes for comfortable playability


  • All-laminate body may not produce the nuanced tones of solid wood guitars
  • Factory setup and action might require adjustments for optimal playability
  • Included strings may not suit all playing styles and may need replacement

Strumming the SA-150, the first thing you notice is the rich and bold sound; it’s clear Squier designed this guitar with the beginner in mind. The ease with which chords can be fretted and individual notes picked is a testament to the guitar’s user-friendly neck.

There’s a satisfying durability to the SA-150. It feels like it can take a bit of rough handling common among new learners. This reliability extends to the aesthetics, too; it has a simple yet classic look that appeals to many.

When practicing for extended periods, the playability remains comfortable, a feature we’re sure all newcomers will appreciate. After all, there’s nothing more discouraging than an instrument that fights back. With the SA-150, we felt more like we were developing a partnership with the guitar, one that promises to grow as skills improve.

Fender Squier Dreadnought

Best Acoustic Guitar Under 0: Top Affordable Picks for 2024

We can confidently say that this guitar delivers a blend of playability and robust design at a value that’s hard to beat.


  • Resistant to wear, ideal for beginners
  • Rich, resonate dreadnought sound
  • Comes as a complete bundle for immediate playing


  • Laminate construction, not solid wood
  • Tuning stability may be a concern
  • May require setup for optimal playability

After trying out the Fender Squier Dreadnought, we were genuinely impressed by its durability. As beginners ourselves once, we appreciate the tough laminate construction that can take the knocks of daily practice.

The sound exceeded our expectations for a guitar in this price range. It projected a warm tone that filled the room, and the dreadnought body certainly contributed to its sonic presence.

We love that this guitar includes everything you need to start playing right away—even a handy instructional DVD. There’s no need to scour the internet or local shops for accessories; it’s all in the bundle.

For any beginner eager to start their musical journey without breaking the bank, the Fender Squier Dreadnought is a smart choice. It’s got the feel, the look, and the sound that new guitarists will enjoy as they learn.

Best Choice Acoustic Starter Set

Best Acoustic Guitar Under 0: Top Affordable Picks for 2024

If you’re dipping your toes into the world of guitar playing without breaking the bank, this is a well-rounded starter kit that’s hard to pass up.


  • All-inclusive accessory bundle saves time and additional expenses.
  • The guitar provides a comfortable playing experience and a rich sound that is remarkable for its price.
  • Protective carrying case is not only stylish but also safeguards the guitar on the move.


  • The included straps and tuners may not meet the expectations of more advanced players.
  • Nylon strings and engineered wood body may not be the preferred materials for all.
  • The durability of the accessories may be a concern over time.

We’ve got our hands on this sleek black acoustic guitar that’s undeniably an eye-catcher for anyone looking to pick up the instrument. Right out of the box, you feel the completeness of the package — it has got everything to start strumming immediately. The tuner clicked into place easily, letting us fine-tune the nylon strings, while the carrying case felt robust and ready for the road.

The comfort while playing caught us by surprise. The size fits snugly whether you’re lounging on the couch or standing under the spotlight. When it comes to sound, we found ourselves enveloped in warm, vibrant tones that fill up the room, just the way you’d want a dreadnought guitar to perform.

Sure, the included accessories aren’t top-shelf quality, but they’re more than capable of getting a beginner up and running. We especially appreciated the pleasantly surprising quality of the gig bag, offering more protection than expected initially. This acoustic set isn’t just about looks or basics; it offers a genuinely enjoyable playing experience for us, the newcomers and intermediate players alike.

Best Choice Sunburst Acoustic

Best Acoustic Guitar Under 0: Top Affordable Picks for 2024

We think this guitar is a solid choice for anyone looking to start their musical journey without breaking the bank.


  • Impressively complete bundle for beginners
  • Quality wood construction with an eye-catching sunburst finish
  • Ready to play straight out of the box


  • Some components like the strap could be higher quality
  • May require a setup for optimal playability
  • Tuners made of plastic may not feel as durable

When we strummed the Best Choice Sunburst Acoustic for the first time, its vibrant tones filled the room, exceeding our expectations for an entry-level guitar. The full-size dimension fits comfortably, whether cradled in a cosy home setting or carried along to a casual jam session with friends.

The array of accessories is quite generous, especially considering the price point. Having a tuner at your fingertips is incredibly convenient for beginners, and the added capo and picks mean you can start experimenting with different sounds right away.

It’s not every day that you find a budget-friendly acoustic that actually sounds decent, let alone looks good hanging on the wall or resting on a stand. The sunburst finish gives it a touch of class often reserved for pricier models. However, after a few playthroughs, we did notice the factory strings might not suit everyone’s taste, and you may want to invest in a string upgrade sooner rather than later.

Overall, the Best Choice Sunburst Acoustic offers a compelling package for aspiring guitarists. A few minor tweaks might be needed down the road, but it’s definitely a beginner’s companion that belies its modest price tag.

Buying Guide

Understand Your Needs

Before we dive into the features, let’s consider what we need from an acoustic guitar. Think about the type of music we want to play and the sound we are going for. This will guide our selection process.

Important Features to Consider

Body Style:
The body style affects the sound and playability. Larger bodies offer richer sound, while smaller ones are easier to handle.

Different woods produce varying tones. Softwoods give a brighter sound, while hardwoods offer a warmer tone.

Neck and Action:
The neck should be comfortable for our hand size, and the action—distance between the strings and fretboard—should be low for ease of play without causing buzz.

Check the Craftsmanship

Build Quality:
Look for even joints and smooth finishes. The quality of the construction can greatly affect the sound and durability.

Quality tuning machines and sturdy bridge pins ensure better tuning stability and sound transfer.

Budget Considerations

We have to balance between cost and quality. Stick to our budget but don’t compromise too much on the key features that matter to us.

Try Before You Buy

If possible, play various guitars within our budget. It gives us a better sense of the feel and sound than online descriptions and reviews.

After-Purchase Support

Consider the warranty and customer service availability. Good support can be crucial if we encounter any issues with our guitar.

By keeping these points in mind, we can find a quality acoustic guitar that suits our needs without breaking the bank.

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