Just as music has evolved over time, so too has the way guitars are made. Today there are a wide variety of guitar types, each with its own unique features and capabilities.
The creative minds behind the different instruments we play today will amaze you. Guitar inventors and designers are constantly pushing the boundaries of what can be done with a guitar, and creating exciting new models in the process.
6 Types of Guitar
With technology constantly evolving, some types of guitars are now more unique than ever, offering players an opportunity to express themselves in a new and creative way. From acoustic instruments to electric guitars, there are many different types of guitars out there to choose from!
Whether you’re looking for a new instrument or want to learn how to play for the first time, check out some of these amazing and unique types of guitars below:
1. Acoustic Guitar
Nothing compares to the sound of a guitar played acoustically. The sound of an acoustic instrument is generally warm and pleasant, making it the perfect accompaniment for any performance or musical event.
This guitar type is usually played unplugged and is made up of a wooden frame with strings running across it. This is definitely a popular choice among beginners due to its versatility and simple construction. In fact, many guitarists begin playing with an acoustic guitar before moving on to more advanced models.
One of the best things about this type of guitar is the fact that it’s easy to play – just about anyone can pick up and play an acoustic guitar within minutes of starting lessons. This is one of the reasons why they are such a popular instrument for beginners!
However, as a beginner, you should make sure you choose a guitar that suits your style and abilities. This will ensure you get the maximum enjoyment from your guitar and ensure you get the most out of your playing experience.
There are many different types of acoustic guitars available on the market today, allowing you to find one that is perfect for you. This means that you can invest in a guitar of your taste and budget, giving you a chance to find the one that works best for you.
2. Electric Guitar
When you think of an upgrade, this is definitely first in line to consider. As the name implies, this type is powered by electricity to produce sound with the aid of an amplifier. But far more than the amplification it provides, you will have more flexibility when it comes to different tones available in the amp. The basic controls allow you to adjust and explore the “low, mid, high” frequencies. Also, most amps have two channels, so you can switch to clean and dirty channels.
Some amplifiers come with built-in effects, if not, you can add pedals for the added effects you desire to have. With all the accessories backing up this gear, it surely offers a lot more than what an acoustic guitar offers.
You just have to be aware that since there is a lot happening around this type of guitar, it will also cost you pretty much to establish your set of gears. But, as a beginner, your starter pack can just be an electric guitar, an amp and a cable to get things running.
3. Classical Guitar
This type is favored by musicians for solo performances as well as chamber music and orchestral works. The classical guitar has a flatter fretboard and neck than other types of guitars.
All the way from the looks, the way it’s held, its sound and music, it’s certainly classic! This can actually come next to an acoustic guitar, not that they can’t afford the electric guitar and its accessories, but because they are thrilled to play classical music.
4. Bass Guitar
If you’re fascinated to get groovy along with the bass drum in a band, this type is definitely a great choice. It is the lowest-pitched member of the string family and it blends well with the other strings.
You will have no trouble learning the notes because it follows the thickest four strings of an electric or acoustic guitar. Their main difference includes a longer neck or scale length with significantly thicker strings to fret.
Although it’s not any less difficult than the other guitars, and it has its own challenges to bear, this is still definitely a right fit for a beginner. If you already know how to play an acoustic guitar, then it adds to your advantage.
5. Electro-Acoustic Guitar
Also known as acoustic-electric guitar, it is simply an acoustic guitar that is amplified with a pickup so it can be played in a gig doing solo or in a band.
The goal of this type is mainly for amplification. So, if you wish to keep the tone of an acoustic guitar while playing to an audience, you can always choose this type to have the best of both worlds of the two popular types of guitar.
6. Semi-Acoustic Guitar
This type can be a bit tricky to some beginners. To avoid confusion, it is an electric guitar with a hollow body or simply a hollow-body electric guitar. This guitar is popularly used in jazz music, but also in genres like pop, folk and blues.
The list could go on but these six types of guitar are commonly played by famous musicians and are readily available in the market. Regardless of what you end up choosing, it’s all worth every penny as long you have fun playing your music with your instrument.
Factors in Choosing What Type of Guitar Fits You
Professional musicians might have a long list that goes beyond what the average person would consider when buying a guitar. To make it simple for beginners, however, there are a few things you should keep in mind when deciding what style of guitar to buy.
First, to find which type of guitar you want to learn first, you have to consider two things:
- Your Playing Style
The first factor to consider is what type of playing style you have and what you want out of a guitar. Will you be playing in a band? Will you be soloing? Do you only play on occasion, or do you play every day? All of these things will determine what guitar you should buy.
For example, if you are mainly a solo guitarist who plays at open mic nights or weekend jams, you will probably want to invest in an acoustic-electric guitar, which is perfect for this type of music.
If you are in a band that plays regularly, then you probably need a more sturdy instrument that will withstand the wear and tear of being on the road. You will also need an electric, semi-acoustic or an acoustic-electric guitar if you want to play in an acoustic duo, trio, or larger group.
But if you’re only using it at home for fun, while on break and relaxing, then a decent acoustic guitar will do.
- Music Genres
This can be a minor thing to consider since we already discussed the playing style but it is also helpful to know the music genre you’ll be playing. If your kind of music is pop, folk and country, an acoustic guitar is the best choice. However, if you want to play rock music in a band, then an electric guitar is the right fit.
After finding which type of guitar you’re getting, here are the other things to consider:
- Body Size, Shape & Weight
The first two factors are something you can prepare ahead of time at home by asking other musicians or doing some research online. The third factor is something you experience as soon as you enter the guitar shop.
You usually scan the guitars in terms of body size and shape and then later hold it to check the weight if it’s comfortable enough to carry or if it fits your body frame. But body size, shape, and weight are more than just the physical comfort and ease of use, it also affects the overall tone and sound projection. The latter must be carefully examined.
- Top Wood
Guitar tops (the soundboard on top of the guitar’s body) are the most crucial among the other guitar woods used in the guitar. The top wood is not only meant for decorative purposes, but mainly for the specific tone it generates.
Sitka Spruce is the most common for acoustic guitars while cedars are used on guitars for fingerpicking. We also have mahogany, rosewood, maple, ebony and other wood varieties you can explore to find the unique sound you’re looking for.
- Comfort & Playability
After checking the tone, you need to try if you can hold the guitar’s neck comfortably and fret up and down the strings with ease. Always choose what feels right in your hands, this is equally important with the sound you’re getting from the guitar. You need to ensure that your guitar is something you would love to pick up and play every day.
- Your Budget
Next, you should look at your budget. How much do you want to spend? What kind of price range are you comfortable with? These are all important questions to consider when shopping for a new guitar. All guitars vary in price depending on the features and the brand name. There are guitars for beginners that cost as low as $100 and there are guitars for professionals that can cost thousands. An acoustic guitar at $200 is already a decent guitar to start with.
First, determine the type of guitar you want. Are you a beginner? Do you have a preference for a specific brand? Do you want a certain sound? Do you want a particular look? All of these factors will play into your decision. Then, research the price of the type of guitar you want.
Every beginner starts with a budget in mind and this is actually great so you’ll come prepared when shopping. You will also know if you can still stretch your budget just in case you find something you’re fascinated about that’s over the price you initially set.
- The Brand
Lastly, go for popular brands. If this is your first time buying a guitar, it might be difficult for you to figure out which one has the best quality. Going with the famous brands are more reliable to begin with since they already established a good reputation and you can find significant reviews from other musicians, not just the brand but the specific guitar model, so you can further assess the pros and cons of a certain guitar.
What Type of Guitar Do You Like Most?
If you’re asking for a recommendation, just like how most people started, I’d say go grab an acoustic guitar. This is strategic enough when it comes to budget and you can easily switch to an electric or bass guitar once you have saved up.
Now, are you ready to start learning the guitar? You don’t need to think twice, Guitarist Academy is your best buddy in your journey!