Choosing The Best Acoustic Guitar For Less Than 300 dollars (+ Reviews)

Best-Acoustic-Guitar-Under-$300Last Updated Nov-30-2016. There is a large gap between the affordable entry level guitars and those that are priced around the $500 mark. There are so many good instruments that are in this range that we decided they needed a list all their own. We wanted to showcase all the options and summarize all the features you can choose from.

We only the selected the best from the droves of possibilities. Our list is full of guitars that deserve your attention, your time, and of course – your money. There are no travel guitars here, they have their own article. There are only full-sized acoustics made for the beginner to intermediate player with a budget of $300. Let’s get this list started:

Top 10 Best Acoustic Guitars Under $300:

Image
Acoustic Guitar
Summary
Rating
Yamaha FG700SYamaha FG800
A great looking guitar that sounds better than it looks.
4.9 Stars
Total of 4.9/5
Takamine GD51-NAT Dreadnought Acoustic GuitarTakamine GD51-NatAn outstanding acoustic-electric guitar for its price.
4.8 Stars
Total of 4.8/5
Yamaha FG730SYamaha FG730S Yamaha continues to dominate this price range with another solid entry.
4.8 Stars
Total of 4.8/5
Cort L450CCort L450C
Solid mahogany top and back with warmth in the finish and voice.
4.7 Stars
Total of 4.7/5
Takamine GD20Takamine GD20-NS A cedar topped standout in a range full of spruce tops.
4.7 Stars
Total of 4.7/5
BristolBd16Bristol BD16 by Blueridge Guitar worthy of being named after the birthplace of Country Music.
4.6 Stars
Total of 4.6/5
ROS-06-FE3-2_new_4Recording King ROS-06 Vintage styling with a voice to match with modern playability.
4.5 Stars
Total of 4.5/5
previewWashburn WD7S Classy contender for your first guitar with plenty of inspiring sound.
4.5 Stars
Total of 4.5/5
Fender_CP_100_Parlor_Small_Body_Acoustic_Guitar__89757.1425891548.1280.1280Fender CP-100 Parlor An uncommon parlor with a modern sound for today’s player.
4.4 Stars
Total of 4.4/5
oscar-schmidt-parlor_new_1Oscar Schmidt O315 Parlor Vintage vibe that harkens back to the 1920s in tone and looks.
4.4 Stars
Total of 4.4/5

Yamaha FG800

yamaha-fg800

Body&Neck:4.8 Stars
Hardware:4.7 Stars
Sound:4.8 Stars
Value:5 Stars
Average:4.8 Stars

Yamaha has been making great acoustic guitars for decades, and the FG800 continues their tradition. It is the successor to the number one selling acoustic guitar of all-time Yamaha’s FG700S. With the 800 the bracing has been improved giving it better projection. The top is solid Sitka spruce.

Nato/Okume is used for the back and sides, and it has a tone like mahogany. Nato is also used for the neck. Fingerboard and bridge are made of rosewood. The same die-cast tuners that are found on all the F series are used to keep the tuning stable on the FG800. It has a very round and warm sound with just enough brightness for the treble strings to cut into the mix.


Takamine GD51-Nat DreadnoughtTakamine GD51-NAT Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

Body&Neck:4.6 Stars
Hardware:4.9 Stars
Sound:4.8 Stars
Value:4.8 Stars
Average:4.8 Stars

Takamine’s GD51-Nat is an amazing guitar that just happens to have a budget price. The top is solid spruce with a slim mahogany neck. Rosewood is used for the headcap, bound fingerboard, the back, and sides. The appointments are real nice with an abalone rosette, mother-of-pearl dot inlays, gold die-cast tuners, and the guitar comes in either a natural finish or Sunburst.

As pretty as the GD51 is, it has even better sound. The combination of tonewoods gives it an even tone with a nice mix of treble, mids, and bass. The split saddle design helps intonation, and gives the guitar even more sweetness to its voice. This is a great instrument for the first time player.


Yamaha FG730S

Yamaha FG730S

Body&Neck:4.8 Stars
Hardware:4.6 Stars
Sound:4.5 Stars
Value:4.9 Stars
Average:4.7 Stars

A new player would start off with a great guitar, if their first purchase was the Yamaha FG730S. Yamaha continues to show its dominance in this price range with another entry on our list. The top is solid spruce with rosewood back and sides.

The neck is made of nato, a common replacement for mahogany due to their similar tonal qualities. The neck and headstock are bound and the headstock has mother-of-pearl inlay used for the Yamaha name and logo. It has the classic cowboy jangly sound that will appeal to most players. There are even three different colors to choose from: natural, vintage cherry sunburst, and tobacco brown sunburst.


Cort L450c

Cort L450C

Body&Neck:4.6 Stars
Hardware:4.7 Stars
Sound:4.7 Stars
Value:4.6 Stars
Average:4.7 Stars

The L450C by Cort has some amazing features for such a small price. Both the back and top are made of solid mahogany. The use of mahogany continues with the sides and the neck. Rosewood sneaks in for the fingerboard and bridge, which is always a fine addition to any acoustic guitar. Abalone is used for the rosette.

The fret markers have a bit of classic charm with their snowflake shape. The body is concert shape, which is smaller than the dreadnought size. The guitar has a dark appearance due to the mahogany, which also translates to the voice. The tone is warm with great balance, and impressive projection for its size.


Takamine GD20-NS

Takamine GD20-NS

Body&Neck:4.5 Stars
Hardware:4.4 Stars
Sound:4.8 Stars
Value:4.8 Stars
Average:4.6 Stars

In a world full of spruce tops Takamine’s GD20-NS goes the alternate route with a solid cedar top. Cedar does not take as long as spruce to find its sweetness, but is also does not project as well as spruce. What you sacrifice in projection you more than make up for in tone. The back and sides are mahogany.

The neck is also mahogany with a rosewood fingerboard. The aesthetics are furthered with wood being used for the rosette (rosewood), headstock (rosewood), and heel cap (maple). The rosewood bridge features Takamine’s split saddle design for better intonation, and is pin-less for easier string replacement. The voice of this guitar is warm and mellow with even balance from each string.


Bristol BD16 by Blueridge

BristolBd16

Body&Neck:4.4 Stars
Hardware:4.7 Stars
Sound:4.6 Stars
Value:4.8 Stars
Average:4.6 Stars

The Bristol line is named after the birthplace of Country Music, and the BD16 is worthy of the name and great for the style. It is built like a tank with an all laminate construction and sturdy bracing. The top is spruce with mahogany back and sides. The mahogany neck is slim and comfortable to play.

Rosewood is used for the fingerboard, headstock overlay, and bridge. The tuning is kept stable with 14:1 Schaller style tuners. Simple and clean aesthetics with a pickguard that is black, concentric circle rosette, and black binding. The voice is bright with good supporting bass response. The BD16’s dreadnought body projects well for everyone to hear.


Recording King ROS-06 Classic Series

ROS-06-FE3-2_new_4

Body&Neck:4.4 Stars
Hardware:4.6 Stars
Sound:4.4 Stars
Value:4.5 Stars
Average:4.5 Stars

The ROS-06 by Recording King is a 12th-Fret OOO body sized acoustic. The body size may be smaller than you are used to seeing, but it is a full length instrument. It has a solid Sitka spruce top with mahogany back and sides. Rosewood is used for the fingerboard, headstock overlay, and bridge.

The mahogany neck has a C-profile. The neck is also wide, which classical players and fingerstyle players will feel right at home on. It projects well with really great tone. This guitar is simply dressed with tortoise shell binding on the front and back for bit of class. The slotted headstock is very vintage with open gear tuners to boot.


Washburn WD7S Harvest Series

preview

Body&Neck:4.2 Stars
Hardware:4.4 Stars
Sound:4.6 Stars
Value:4.9 Stars
Average:4.5 Stars

The first words that come to mind upon seeing the WD7S by Washburn is classy. The wood rosette is not flashy, but is a great look that draws the eye. The use of the solid Sitka spruce top, mahogany for the neck, back, and sides, and rosewood for the fingerboard and bridge, are pretty common. But, it just looks a notch above the competition.

Looks are all well and good, but how does it sound? The voice is strong and even with plenty of warmth along with a hint of sweetness. The dreadnought body has plenty of volume. This is a great instrument to begin playing guitar on with its inspiring sound and classy looks.


Fender CP-100 Parlor Small Body

Fender_CP_100_Parlor_Small_Body_Acoustic_Guitar

Body&Neck:4.1 Stars
Hardware:4.4 Stars
Sound:4.2 Stars
Value:4.8 Stars
Average:4.4 Stars

The CP-100 by Fender is not like most parlors. It has a sound that is bigger and fuller than the body would make you believe. The mahogany neck joins the body at the 14th fret, which gives you easy access to two more frets. The body is made of all laminate with a spruce top and mahogany back and sides.

Graph Tech provides the nut and saddle, which is a nice touch instead of plastic. The bridge and fingerboard are both made of rosewood. The top has a satin Sunburst finish. The neck finish is also satin, which makes for a smooth and fast playing experience. It has a modern and warm sound, which will turn-off the vintage crowd.


Oscar Schmidt O315 Parlor Size

oscar-schmidt-parlor_new_1

Body&Neck:4.1 Stars
Hardware:4.5 Stars
Sound:4.4 Stars
Value:4.4 Stars
Average:4.4 Stars

If you are looking for a vintage style guitar with all the vibe and tonal quality of the 1920’s era, then Oscar Schmidt’s O315 is the guitar for you. This is a guitar that sounds like it should be coming out of an old recording from that era not a brand new instrument hanging on the wall of your local music store.

The combination of the body size with the spruce top and trembesi back and sides is perfect for making those old sounds. The styling continues with the slotted headstock with the open gear tuners. The rosewood bridge is also classically styled to make you think you boarded a time machine to buy this instrument.


Top 5 Nylon  Acoustic Guitars under 300$:

Image
Acoustic Guitar
Summary
Rating
Antonio Hermosa AH-50Antonio Hermosa AH-50 Modern take on a classical that is ready to be plugged in.
4.9 Stars
Total of 4.9/5
CC3MXXXXX-P - Копие_new_1Cordoba C3M A classical made and designed with the student in mind.
4.8 Stars
Total of 4.8/5
Products27113-635x575-1008240Ibanez GA6CE Acoustic Electric The electric guitar giants take on the classical for today’s player.
4.7 Stars
Total of 4.7/5
pmtonline-stagg-st31587-31_new_1Stagg C546TCE-N Qualities and features on a superior level, easily competing with bigger names.
4.6 Stars
Total of 4.6/5
$T2eC16FHJFwFFZ4O5BcrBSBWTv7koQ--60_57Washburn C80S Madrid Classical Guitar Not reinventing the classical guitar just making it affordable for everyone.
4.6 Stars
Total of 4.6/5

 

Antonio Hermosa AH50Antonio Hermosa AH-50

Body&Neck:4.8 Stars
Hardware:4.9 Stars
Sound:4.9 Stars
Value:5 Stars
Average:4.9 Stars

The Antonio Hermosa AH50 is an acoustic guitar when using the loosest of definitions. The body is chambered mahogany with a solid spruce top. It also features a cutaway for easy access to the higher frets. There is no soundhole, because the body is only 2” deep and does not produce much sound.

The good news is that it has electronics to make up for its lack of acoustic presence. The electronics offer treble, mid, bass, and volume knobs with a phase switch and built-in tuner. The mahogany neck is bolted on and has a rosewood fingerboard that is standard classical guitar width. The nylon strings have plenty of snap and presence when plugged into an amp.


Cordoba C3MCC3MXXXXX

Body&Neck:4.8 Stars
Hardware:4.8 Stars
Sound:4.8 Stars
Value:4.8 Stars
Average:4.8 Stars
 

The Iberia series by Cordoba is their line of guitars made with the student in mind. The Cordoba C3M is the full-sized and solid cedar top entry in the range. The back and sides are mahogany. The neck is nato and has a rosewood fingerboard that features a C-shape, radius of 406mm, and a two way adjustable 4mm truss rod.

The “M” in its name stands for the matte finish that shows off the wood grain and allows the guitar to resonate very well. The rosette is hand inlaid wood that really pops and adds to the looks of the guitar. The tone is warm and is very responsive to how you attack the notes.


Ibanez GA Series GA6CEProducts27113-635x575-1008240

Body&Neck:4.7 Stars
Hardware:4.7 Stars
Sound:4.8 Stars
Value:4.7 Stars
Average:4.7 Stars
 

Ibanez is most known for their great electric guitars, but they also make very good acoustic guitars as well. The GA6CE is a classical guitar with a spruce top and mahogany back and sides. The body also features a cutaway for easier access to all of the fingerboard. The neck is mahogany with a width of 52mm at the nut.

Rosewood is used for the flat fingerboard and the bridge. The cutaway effects the projection of sound, but don’t worry Ibanez has included electronics to help with this issue. The AEQ45 preamp has a three band EQ that also includes a presence and volume controls. The tone is bright with plenty of string clarity and definition.


Stagg C546TCE-Npmtonline-stagg-st31587-31_new_1

Body&Neck:4.7 Stars
Hardware:4.7 Stars
Sound:4.8 Stars
Value:4.7 Stars
Average:4.7 Stars
 

Stagg offers a nylon string acoustic with the C546TCE-N. It has a spruce top with catalpa back and sides. Catalpa is also used for the neck which has a rosewood fingerboard. It comes with a B-Band preamp that has a 3-band EQ and volume control. There is also a phase switch and a built-in tuner.

The body is only 3” deep making for a very comfortable playing experience and also helps with reducing feedback issues. It is available in a left-hand model as well as featuring a black and blueburst models. The projection is hampered by the thin body and cutaway, but the electronics make up for that. There is plenty of warmth in the tone.


Washburn C80S Madrid$T2eC16FHJFwFFZ4O5BcrBSBWTv7koQ--60_57

Body&Neck:4.7 Stars
Hardware:4.7 Stars
Sound:4.8 Stars
Value:4.7 Stars
Average:4.7 Stars
 

The Washburn C80S Madrid does not try to reinvent the classical guitar, but makes it affordable. It uses solid cedar for the top with rosewood back and sides. The rosette is inlaid wood and adds to the looks of the guitar. The neck is mahogany with a nut width of 52mm. The fingerboard and bridge are both made of rosewood.

The compensated saddle and nut are both made of GraphTech’s Nubone. The gold plated open gear tuners are very stable and sit atop the slotted headstock. The sound is traditional and well balanced. The voice projects well with plenty of confidence. This well-crafted student model will keep you playing for years and years.


Is it Really Possible to Find a Good Acoustic Guitar that is below $300?

It absolutely is. There are so many good builders out there that are competing for your attention. The only way they can beat out the competition is by building the best guitars at the best price. If you spend more of course you can get a better guitar, but if you are constrained into this price range there is plenty good stuff to choose from.

Take the time to look through our list, and that will be the best place to start. If any of these guitars look really good to you, then read through our extended reviews. Check out our other lists if this is not the right price range for you. There are so many options, don’t restrain yourself by not seeing what’s out there.