January 2023

Acoustic Guitars: MetaRanking

This page highlights the aggregate summary of Acoustic Guitar rankings posted by key online experts, as of January 2023.

Summary

Between 5 Jan 2023 and 9 Jan 2023, ReviewFinder team examined a total of 104 Acoustic Guitar endorsements from 10 reputable publishers.

74 Acoustic Guitars were endorsed in total, only 15 made it into this month's ranking (ReviewFinder requires a minimum of 2 endorsements to be included).

As of 9 Jan 2023, Yamaha FG800 takes the cake as the most critically-acclaimed acoustic guitar with 6 expert endorsements. 2 experts out of 6 recommended it as the '#1 acoustic guitar' this month. It is followed by Taylor GS Mini and Fender CD 60S , with 5 and 3 expert endorsements respectively.

Brand breakdown
Show all brands

Price breakdown
As can be seen in the chart below, lowest high-ranking acoustic guitars start at $59.99 (Best Choice Products SKY119) and go up to $5999 (Taylor Builder’s Edition K14ce). Median acoustic guitar costs $529 (The Loar Brownstone LH-204).
$59.99
$5999

At a glance - January 2023 Ranking

Scroll horizontally to browse this ranking table
Rank Change Price Acoustic Guitar
Guitar World
Music Grotto
GuitarPlayer
The Strategist
Six String Acoustic
KBonet
Old Time Music
Music Critic
Guitar Chalk
Music Radar
1
- $230
Yamaha FG800
4
16
1
-
6
-
-
1
3
-
2
- $599
Taylor GS Mini
5
3
-
-
1
-
-
-
2
5
3
- Check price
Fender CD 60S
1
1
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
1
4
- $499
Martin LX1E Little Martin
7
8
-
1
-
-
-
3
-
-
5
- $549
Seagull S6 Original
9
-
-
-
-
-
4
7
4
-
6
- $469
Epiphone EJ-200SCE
-
6
-
-
-
-
6
-
-
4
7
- $149
Epiphone DR-100
8
17
-
-
-
-
-
6
-
-
8
- $3199
Martin D-28
-
7
13
-
-
-
-
-
-
12
9
- Check price
Epiphone Hummingbird PRO
3
-
-
-
-
-
5
-
-
-
13
- $949
Martin Road Series D-10E
-
-
-
-
-
3
-
-
7
-
14
- $549
Art & Lutherie Roadhouse
-
15
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
2
15
- $499
Martin Junior DJR-10
-
-
-
6
-
-
-
-
-
6
16
- Check price
Guild Traditional D-55
-
4
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
13
17
- Check price
Gibson SJ-200 Deluxe
-
9
10
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
18
- Check price
Gibson Hummingbird Original
-
-
11
-
-
-
-
-
-
14

Sorted by price:

Position in ranking Price Acoustic Guitar
#7 $149 Epiphone DR-100 [buy] [more info]
#3 $152.99 Fender CD 60S [buy] [more info]
#1 $229.99 Yamaha FG800 [buy] [more info]
#6 $469 Epiphone EJ-200SCE [buy] [more info]
#4 $499 Martin LX1E Little Martin [buy] [more info]
#15 $499 Martin Junior DJR-10 [buy] [more info]
#5 $549 Seagull S6 Original [buy] [more info]
#14 $549 Art & Lutherie Roadhouse [buy] [more info]
#2 $599 Taylor GS Mini [buy] [more info]
#13 $949 Martin Road Series D-10E [buy] [more info]
#8 $3199 Martin D-28 [buy] [more info]

We ranked Yamaha FG800 #1 in January 2023 because:

  • 6 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
  • Out of those, 2 experts ranked Yamaha FG800 as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

A best-seller at the budget end of the best beginners acoustic guitar market

Pros
Great sound for the money
Good build quality
Low price

Cons
No electronics

Go to ranking

Music Grotto

Affordable Solid Wood Option

Pros
The solid spruce top is rare for this price range
Scalloped bracing for durability
Excellent range of tones

Cons
The action might be a little high
Doesn't typically come with any accessories

Go to ranking

GuitarPlayer

Yamaha’s budget acoustic delivers tone beyond its call of duty

Pros
Solid spruce top a real treat at this price
Blends well with vocals
Deep, rich tone

Cons
Lacks any added extras

Go to ranking

Six String Acoustic

Go to ranking

Music Critic

Pros
Comfortable to play
Sound offers clarity and punch
Made from materials found in higher-end products
Great price

Go to ranking

Guitar Chalk

Pros
Fantastic price point
Solid Spruce top
Maple fretboard
Guitar looks and plays like a mid-range acoustic

Cons
Strings will need changed
Tone can sound a bit thin depending on the type of music you're into

Go to ranking

We ranked Taylor GS Mini #2 in January 2023 because:

  • 5 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
  • Out of those, 1 expert ranked Taylor GS Mini as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

High-end versatility and tonal quality at an entry-level price

Pros
High quality tone
Extremely versatile sounds
Wonderful build quality

Cons
Doesn’t have the volume of a full size

Go to ranking

Music Grotto

Best Small Bodied Guitar

Pros
Compact symphony body is accessible for smaller body types
True, clear highs
Excellent playability

Cons
Laminate back and sides
No nylon version (a Symphony standard)

Go to ranking

Six String Acoustic

Go to ranking

Guitar Chalk

Pros
Tonewood combinations look great (especially Koa)
Tone is both bright and warm at the same time
Sounds great for melodic, fingerpicking styles
Price point is awesome for a solid top Taylor acoustic
ES-B pickup/preamp system is a nice addition

Cons
None

Go to ranking

Music Radar

The best acoustic guitar for travelling

Pros
A great concept
Build quality and design
Sound and playability

Cons
Cedar-topped and nylon-stringed versions would be nice

Go to ranking

Methodology: combine opinions of key experts

Identify Experts

We identify key publishers and experts that consistently review and recommend Acoustic Guitars.

Capture Rankings

For each publisher we find a currently recommended "top 10" list of Acoustic Guitars, it must be updated in the last 9 months.

Aggregate Rankings

We put all those lists together and aggregate them. The more frequently a product is recommended, the higher it is in our ranking

Experts chosen for January 2023 ranking

We ranked Fender CD 60S #3 in January 2023 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
  • Out of those, 3 experts ranked Fender CD 60S as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

The best acoustic guitar for beginners seeking a big brand name

Pros
Balanced sound
Stays in tune
Entry-level price

Cons
Individual looks may put some off

Go to ranking

Music Grotto

Beginner's Guitar

Pros
Solid wood top for tonal clarity
Rolled fretboard edge is easy for beginners to guitar to use.
Affordable guitar without sacrificing playability

Cons
Laminate back and sides
The classic dreadnought body is a little bulky

Go to ranking

Music Radar

One of the best acoustic guitars under $200 right now

Pros
Superb value for money
Nice low action out the box
Excellent tonal balance

Cons
Glossy finish may put some players off

Go to ranking

We ranked Martin LX1E Little Martin #4 in January 2023 because:

  • 4 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
  • Out of those, 1 expert ranked Martin LX1E Little Martin as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

Versatility and stellar sound in a pint-sized package

Pros
Excellent build quality
Great volume for the size
Electro tonal variety

Cons
May be too small for adult befinners
Higher end of beginner price range

Go to ranking

Music Grotto

Best Travel Acoustic

Pros
Easy to travel with
Entry-level Martin option
Durable construction

Cons
Doesn't suit larger hands
May not have the range of tones of higher-end Martins

Go to ranking

The Strategist

Best overall acoustic guitar for beginners

Go to ranking

Music Critic

Pros
Easy to carry around.
Rich tone and resonance for a great performance.
Big gig bag that allows protection.

Go to ranking

We ranked Seagull S6 Original #5 in January 2023 because:

  • 4 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

Premium quality in a guitar that’s built to last

Pros
Optimum build quality
Sweet and versatile sound
Good for fingerpicking

Cons
No electronics onboard

Go to ranking

Old Time Music

Pros
Well-made with very good materials and fittings.
A rich, warm cedar top sound.

Cons
It might be rather large for young beginners.

Go to ranking

Music Critic

Pros
Reliable for live performances.
Easy and comfortable to use, especially for beginners.

Go to ranking

Guitar Chalk

Pros
Solid Cedar top
Wild Cherry for the back and sides makes for a unique tone
Maple fretboard
Great price point
Pickup & preamp version available

Cons
None for the price

Go to ranking

We ranked Epiphone EJ-200SCE #6 in January 2023 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Music Grotto

Best Budget Jumbo

Pros
Internal hardware punches up
Jumbo bodied acoustic with booming low end
Well suited for rhythm players

Cons
Loses some clarity on the high end
The large body is harder for some people to play

Go to ranking

Old Time Music

Pros
Plenty of style and swagger, it has the look.
A great sounding guitar that has a nice easy playing action.

Cons
The purists may not like the cutaway that’s been added.

Go to ranking

Music Radar

The best acoustic guitar on a budget for plugged-in performance

Pros
Solid top
Big jumbo tones
Classic J-200 styling

Cons
The large size isn't for everyone

Go to ranking

We ranked Epiphone DR-100 #7 in January 2023 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

Good build quality and surprising tone is yours for a low,low price

Pros
Good build quality
Easy player
Can’t go wrong for just over $100

Cons
Not the most exciting beginner guitar

Go to ranking

Music Grotto

Most Potential Upgrades

Pros
An affordable option for beginners
Responds well to customization
Holds tuning exceptionally well for a guitar of its class

Cons
Carries a huge logo across the bridge
Brighter tone than comparable guitar bodies

Go to ranking

Music Critic

Pros
Dot markers that make playing more convenient.
Consistent performance.
Durable and convenient to carry around.

Go to ranking

We ranked Martin D-28 #8 in January 2023 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Music Grotto

Best Dreadnought

Pros
Aged top that retains a wide range of notes
Little high end features with Martin's minimalist design
Quick response

Cons
The newer design loses some of Martin's signature sonic tones
High-end investment

Go to ranking

GuitarPlayer

Grab your very own ‘golden era’ Martin without needing a second mortgage

Pros
One of the most iconic acoustics of all time
Adirondack spruce is highly sought after
Still cheaper than a genuine ‘30s D-28

Cons
Price is still pretty eye-watering
The vintage sound isn't for everyone

Go to ranking

Music Radar

Martin's 'reimagining' of one of the best acoustic guitars

Pros
Clarity and balance
Enhanced look and feel
Comfortable neck profile

Cons
Lacking slightly in the low end

Go to ranking

We ranked Epiphone Hummingbird PRO #9 in January 2023 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

The best acoustic guitar for beginners who want heritage pedigree

Pros
Excellent sound
Versatile pre-amp
Easy player

Cons
-The large body may not suit smaller players

Go to ranking

Old Time Music

Pros
Great sound, well made with good materials.
Good pickup and preamp and effective tone controls.

Cons
No onboard tuner.

Go to ranking

We ranked Martin Road Series D-10E #10 in January 2023 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
KBonet

Best Budget Buy

Pros
Chrome hardware for durability
Sapele body provides the warm sound you need
Saves you money for the hardshell case
The sound is rich and remains balanced

Cons
A bit heavy

Go to ranking

Guitar Chalk

Pros
Solid top, back and sides
Spruce bracing
Fishman Sonitone preamp/pickup system
Warm tone, ideal for strumming
Includes a hardshell case

Cons
Laminate Sapele isn't particularly exciting

Go to ranking

We ranked Art & Lutherie Roadhouse #11 in January 2023 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Music Grotto

Best Throwback

Pros
Excellent projection for blues and country playing
Solid wood construction
Throwback design may appeal to some.

Cons
May have trouble with the bridge on some models.
The design is a turn off for those who like a traditional acoustic

Go to ranking

Music Radar

One of the best acoustics available today for less than $1000

Pros
Great for players with small hands
Clarity of tone with a subtle warmth
Excellent projection for a parlour guitar

Cons
If you have massive hands your thumbs might get in the way

Go to ranking

We ranked Martin Junior DJR-10 #12 in January 2023 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
The Strategist

Best smaller-bodied,solid-wood acoustic guitar for beginners

Go to ranking

Music Radar

When it comes to the best acoustic guitars, we love this dread

Pros
Punchy mid-range tones
Classic Martin sound
Smaller body is comfy

Cons
Lacks depth of a full-sized dread

Go to ranking

We ranked Guild Traditional D-55 #13 in January 2023 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Music Grotto

Easiest for Small Hands

Pros
Simple and easy to play the guitar with smaller hands.
Solid, high-end wood for perfect clarity
Easily accessible neck with low action
Works both loud and soft playing

Cons
Classically trained finger-pickers may find the low action unsettling
Big investment upfront

Go to ranking

Music Radar

A highly desirable, slim-necked dreadnought

Pros
Ace strumming and flat picking tones
Excellent build quality
Comfortable 'D' neck profile

Cons
Neck might not suit fingerstyle players

Go to ranking

We ranked Gibson SJ-200 Deluxe #14 in January 2023 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Music Grotto

Best Splurge

Pros
The best of what Gibson is famous for
Solid, high-end woods for ultimate resonance and clarity
Solid electronics

Cons
Very expensive for beginners
The jumbo body may not suit some players

Go to ranking

GuitarPlayer

A slimmed down jumbo that won’t break the bank

Pros
Slimmer than the standard SJ-200
Walnut body adds something different to the mix
Slightly more affordable than most SJ-200’s

Cons
Not quite a full-fat 200

Go to ranking

We ranked Gibson Hummingbird Original #15 in January 2023 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Acoustic Guitars” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
GuitarPlayer

An iconic, inspirational square-shoulder dread’

Pros
Sounds absolutely massive
Spruce & mahogany is a dream combination
Heritage Cherry Sunburst in particular looks dreamy

Cons
Huge sound comes at the expense of comfort
Not everyone likes the look

Go to ranking

Music Radar

The iconic Gibson songbird, loved by folk, rock and country players

Pros
Structurally fantastic
Practically sonically faultless
LR Baggs electronics capture unplugged tone impeccably

Cons
The colour might not be to everyone’s taste

Go to ranking