Best Acoustic Guitars for Fingerstyle

The 10 Best Fingerstyle Guitars

It can be difficult finding the best acoustic guitars for fingerstyle.

After all, there are thousands of different options out there.

Whether you’re a beginner or advanced fingerstyle guitar player, it’s nearly impossible to filter out all of the noise. 

Luckily, you’re in the right place. I’ve gone ahead and done all of the research on your behalf. 

In this post, we’ll be reviewing the 10 best acoustic guitars for fingerstyle. 

For each product, we’ll be breaking down the key features you should be looking for including features, price, and performance to help you decide on what’s best for your specific needs. 

Let’s get started!

The 10 Best Acoustic Guitars for Fingerstyle

Don’t have time to read this guide?

In short, here are the 10 best fingerstyle guitars on the market:

Yamaha FG800 Solid Top Fingerstyle Acoustic Guitar

Our pick
Yamaha FG800 Solid Top Acoustic Guitar
$199.99

The Yamaha FG800 proves that a great acoustic guitar doesn't need to cost a fortune. It has excellent playability, tone, and overall build quality all for an entry level price.

Buy on Amazon
08/03/2020 04:55 pm

If you’re looking for a budget-friendly acoustic guitar that allows you to slay your performance, the Yamaha FG800 is a promising option.  

Yamaha Folk Guitar had proved its worth since 1966 when it came to the market. Yamaha is also the “guitar of the famous” such as John Lennon, Carlos Santana, Bob Dylan and many more.

The Yamaha FG series became more popular due to its newly constructed features that focus on playability and world-class quality.

Let’s take a look at some of the features of Yamaha FG800.

  • Scalloped bracing
  • 6.3 pounds in weight
  • 42.5 x 20.7 x 6.1 inches 
  • Rosewood fretboard
  • Six strings (Yamaha FS50BT or D’Addario EXP11)
  • Nato neck

One of the reasons why I like FG800 and it became popular is because of affordability. 

Plus, it is a well-built guitar that can play a variety of music.

The Yamaha FG800 has scalloped bracing that brings out the natural sound of the instrument. 

The scalloped bracing is also an acoustic feature that makes the top board strong and durable.

It also features a rosewood fretboard and nato neck that can also contribute to better sound quality. 

The FG800 is a full-sized guitar, which means that it won’t be suitable for small children.

You can choose from a dreadnought body type and grand concert body type. 

I suggest you choose the dreadnought body type if you’re doing a lot of fingerpicking and strumming. 

If you’re a beginner, the grand concert type is for you because it is smaller and easier to play.

The color options for FG800 are natural, ruby red, black, autumn burst, brown sunburst, sunset blue, and turquoise.

The FG800 has six steel strings that have excellent sound properties. (Your fingers might hurt a bit if you’re a beginner, but the pain will disappear when you get used to it.)

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Lightweight
  • Strong and durable
  • High sound quality

Cons

  • Too big for small players
  • Susceptible to scratches but does not affect performance.

Yamaha FG830 Solid Top Fingerstyle Acoustic Guitar

Upgrade pick
Yamaha FG830 Solid Top Acoustic Guitar
$279.99

The Yamaha FG830 delivers excellent build quality, sound and playability at an affordable price. It offers one of the most consistent playing experiences for beginner and advanced level players.

Buy on Amazon
08/03/2020 05:55 am

If you’re someone who wants to spend a little more up front for a fingerstyle guitar that will last longer as your progress, then the Yamaha FG830 could be a great option.

It is perfect for both young and emerging players because of the size and cutting edge acoustic analysis technology.

It weighs 6.6 pounds which is an advantage for young and smaller players. It is less bulky than the dreadnought body type providing you with increased comfort and playability.

FG830 has scalloped bracing that can enhance sound quality and produce strong low to mid-range sounds. 

Let’s have a quick at the features!

  • Dreadnought body type
  • Sitka spruce top
  • 21 frets
  • Nato neck
  • Rosewood back and sides

The FG830 has a thin body type with a glossy finish for better aesthetics. 

If you’re a right-handed player, you’ll find comfort with FS830 because it is for players like you.

It features a sturdy and lightweight Sitka spruce top that adds durability to the instrument. 

Sitka spruce top can improve sound quality as it imparts a clear and crisps tone, which is an advantage when exploring your repertoire.

It provides an excellent acoustic which makes it ideal for playing folk, country and any other style of music.

The acoustics translate through the mic efficiently when recording. 

Pros

  • Ideal for players with smaller hands
  • Light and less bulky
  • Attractive
  • High sound quality
  • Easy playability
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Saddle, nut and bridge pin made of plastic (however, you can replace it)

Fender FA-115 Acoustic Guitar for Fingerstyle

Best value
Fender FA-115 Acoustic Guitar Bundle
$199.99

The Fender FA-115 Acoustic Guitar Bundle gives you everything you need to start playing playing straight out of the box including the guitar, strap, tuner, picks and instructional DVD's

Buy on Amazon
08/03/2020 04:55 pm

The FA-115 is one of the most affordable acoustic guitars by Fender.

Fender is known for creating high-quality guitars that produce the best tone and melody.

FA-115 is one of the most reliable entry-level guitars under 200$. There may be a few compromises that you will notice but those are considered minor.

The marketplace offers FA-115 a beginner’s acoustic guitar pack, which adds to the reasons why it is a good deal.

The FA-115 also includes the following accessories:

  • Strap
  • Picks
  • New strings
  • Gigbag
  • Clip-on tuner
  • Instructional DVD
  • Fender free trial membership

Below are the main features:

  • Solid spruce top
  • Rosewood fingerboard
  • Hardwood bridge
  • Dreadnought body style

That’s right! FA-115 has a solid spruce top.

I know you’re surprised. (I am too!)

Based on experience, I can say that the FA-115 sounds like a high-end guitar.

The solid spruce top sets it apart from guitars on a similar price range.

It makes the acoustic stronger, loud, defined and more pleasing. 

It has a dreadnought body with a specific neck design that allows effortless fingerpicking. Learning to play will never be an issue.

It comes with a rosewood fingerboard that can add to sound quality, which also compliments various types of playing style.

On the other hand, like any other guitar in this world, FA-115 also has downsides.

Some of the complaints point to the laminated fingerboard, which may create a dull sound. It also makes the instrument heavier compared to a solid wood guitar.

Nevertheless, you can’t find an acoustic guitar on a similar range that is as good and reliable as FA-115!

Pros

  • Great value
  • Suitable for beginners
  • Excellent sound quality
  • Comes with accessories
  • Easy playability
  • Solid top

Cons

  • Laminate fingerboard

Yamaha C40 Full Size Nylon-String Classical Guitar

Best nylon string
Yamaha C40 Classical Guitar Bundle

The Yamaha C40 is an excellent classical guitar for beginners. The nylon strings are a lot easier on your fingertips, making it a good option for learning fingerstyle guitar.

Buy on Amazon

Yamaha C40 is a full-sized classical guitar designed for beginners.

It is also one of the cheapest full-sized classical guitars in the market that is perfect for learning.

It is smaller than the dreadnought size which makes it an ideal choice for young learners.

It comes in a secured gig bag with electric tuners when you receive the item.

All you need to do is tune it!

Yamaha C40 gives a good foundation for learning and playing guitar music.

Here are the main features of Yamaha C40:

  • Spruce top
  • Nato neck
  • Mahogany back and sides
  • Rosewood fingerboard
  • Gloss finish
  • Full-sized

The Yamaha C40 comes with a wooden spruce top, which is typical for guitars on the same price range.

The wood use for this guitar is laminated which means that the sound projection may not be the same as the solid wood guitar.

The Yamaha C40 has a wide nato neck, rosewood fingerboard, 19 frets and has a length of 25.9”.

The neck could be uncomfortable for young learners since it is wide but still manageable.

Nevertheless, it produces a sound every beginner can appreciate.

It may not have top quality strings, but the tuners can help achieve stability and intonation.

Overall, the Yamaha C40 is relatively light, which makes it even more appealing to young learners.

It plays well with flamenco and also allows you to do the fingerstyle without any hassle.

Another distinctive quality of Yamaha C40 is the glossy finish which could be an attraction for some people.

It gives a glossy shine that makes the instrument look elegant and beautiful.

However, you need to wipe it occasionally to avoid the visible fingerprints. 

Pros 

  • Affordable
  • Suitable for beginners and young learners
  • Easy playability
  • Good quality sound and tone
  • Strong and durable

Cons

  • Factory settings need improvement
  • Glossy finish susceptible to visible fingerprints 
  • Laminated wood

Taylor GS Mini Mahogany GS Mini Fingerstyle Acoustic Guitar

Tagged as the modern-day parlour guitar, the GS Mini is a scaled-down version of the Grand Symphony body.

It could be small in nature, but you’ll be surprised how big the sound is. 

The GS Mini is a portable acoustic guitar – it is the perfect guitar to take to festivals, campings and out of town gigs. 

Taylor guitars are one of the best sounding and easy to play guitars in the world.

Read on to know the features of the Taylor GS Mini Mahogany acoustic guitar!

  • Solid mahogany back and sides
  • Grand symphony body
  • 23.5” scale length
  • Ebony fretboard and bridge

Small-sized guitars have poor sound quality – that is not the case with Taylor GS Mini!

It sounds better than most full-sized guitars in the market.

The sound issue has been corrected with GS Mini Mahogany because of solid mahogany back and sides that can produce a bright and warm sound with sharp treble and mid-range. 

It has a perfect and consistent volume balance making it suitable for playing different types of music.

The body looks thinner than a full-sized guitar making it suitable for both adults and young learners.

Beginners and advanced learners can also appreciate the playability of the GS Mini.

The GS Mini Mahogany uses the patented NT neck joint for stable guitar neck and support.

Additionally, the ebony fretboard enhances the tone and stability of this mini acoustic guitar. 

So, if you’re looking for an entry-level mini guitar, consider the GS Mini!

Pros

  • Excellent sound quality
  • Great playability
  • Portable and lightweight
  • Suitable for adult and young players
  • Durable and strong

Cons

  • A bit expensive
  • The satin finish makes scratches and dents more visible

Fender CD-60S Solid Top Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

Fender CD-60S is a dreadnought size acoustic guitar that made for beginners.

It is smaller than some other full-sized guitars which makes it more comfortable and less awkward for beginners.

It may not be the best-looking guitar, but the simple and elegant design attracts attention when playing.

As a bonus, it comes with a hardshell case for durability and protection.

One of the most attractive qualities of the Fender CD-60S is playability. 

It is an affordable guitar that produces high-quality sound and has excellent playability.

Let’s take a look at the features!

  • Solid mahogany top, back and sides
  • Scalloped X bracing
  • Rosewood fingerboard
  • 25.3” scale neck
  • Dreadnought body type

The Fender CD-60S has a solid mahogany top, as well as sides and back.

It comes with 20 frets, rosewood fingerboard, a dual-action truss rod, 25.3” scale neck, die cast tuners and scalloped X bracing.

The guitar produces a clear and warm tone that works with various types of playing styles.

The solid mahogany top makes the sound better as it gives a variety of rich and full tones.

The Fender CD-60S gives a unique sound when strummed and even gets better the longer you use it.

Let me warn you…

It is not the guitar for advanced users; however, it will do well as a backup!

On the other hand, It is an excellent guitar for mini-concerts and for jamming with the family while at home. 

The Fender CD-60S is also a promising choice for someone who’s into fingerpicking as it produces a powerful voice and impressive projection.

It also comes with natural deep lows and crisps high which makes it an excellent guitar for playing modern rock or traditional folk music.

The Fender CD-60S is great value for money compared to its competitors in the market.

All you need is high-quality strings and a good setup before playing to achieve an impressive Fender sound!

Pros

  • Best price range for beginners
  • Strong and durable
  • Top-quality tone
  • Great playability

Cons

  • Not suited for advanced players, but can be used as a backup guitar.
  • Some players are not impressed with the look  

Martin LX1 Little Martin Fingerstyle Acoustic Guitar

Martin & Co Inc marketed LX1 as a “travel guitar” or “parlour guitar.”

First of all, the Little Martin acoustic may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but here are a few reasons why this guitar could be the right choice for you:

  • If you are looking for a perfectly sized guitar for your kid
  • If you love taking your guitar while traveling

The Little Martin acoustic guitar has four categories which are LX1, LXK2, LXM and the Ed Sheeran special.

They all have similar sizes and the only difference that you will notice are the material and electronics.

Let’s take a closer look at the features of Martin LX1!

  • ¾ sized version of a full-size Martin
  • Solid Sitka spruce top
  • Laminated mahogany sides and back
  • Scalloped bracing
  • Strata bound neck

Little Martin is one of the smallest Martin guitars with a scale length of 23”.

It has a more pronounced volume and fuller sound because of the cutaway design.

Martin LX1 has a solid Sitka spruce top and mahogany back and sides which increases the tone quality of the guitar.

The body has an X cross top bracing pattern which adds to its durability and stability.

The bracing creates a clear sound when playing the instrument. 

The body style is also not too flashy; however, the soundhole has an attractive decoration.

The Martin LX1 has a strong strata bound neck with beautiful finish making it look elegant and classy.

The sound of the Little Martin has a unique balance with crisp sharpness of highs.

Pros

  • Easy to play
  • Portable
  • Strong and durable
  • Balanced tone
  • Affordable
  • Ideal for all types of player

Cons

  • Volume bass is lower
  • Lack of fretboard markers 

Fender Classic Design 6 String Acoustic-Electric Guitar

Fender CD-140SCE is marketed by Fender as an easy to play guitar.

It features a fan-based solid cedar top and ovangkol back and sides for mellow tones.

This guitar is an absolute steal for beginners because of the variety of tones.

Beginners may also find the wide neck comfortable when playing. 

Let’s find out more about the features of this versatile guitar!

  • Solid cedar top
  • Ovangkol back and sides
  • Nylon strings
  • Fishman preamp and tuner
  • Wide neck shape
  • Hardshell case

Fender CD140SCE is an attractive guitar with sides and back made of Ovangkol tonewood.

The Ovangkol tonewood also gives a lighter appearance and can create rich and warm tones.

It also comes with nylon strings for easy playability, distinct tone and comfort.

The Fender CD140SCE also features Fishman preamp and tuner which enables you to amplify your guitar without sacrificing the tone.

It comes with a hardshell case when you purchase this guitar. 

Pros

  • Durable and strong
  • Ideal for beginners
  • Attractive appearance
  • Easy playability
  • High sound quality
  • Easily transported

Cons

  • May not be suitable for advanced players.

Cordoba Dolce 7/8 Size Acoustic Nylon String Classical Guitar

Dolce guitar suits you well if you’re looking for something comfortable and easy to play. 

It has a lightweight and small body which makes it perfect for carrying around.

Dolce may be small, but it doesn’t sacrifice volume or sound quality.

Like any other Cordoba guitar, Dolce has an adjustable truss rod for stability.

This guitar is made up of mahogany and Canadian cedar top, making it look expensive and classy.

Here are the main features of Cordoba Dolce!

  • ⅞ size nylon guitar
  • Solid cedar top
  • Mahogany back and sides
  • Small body (630mm scale length)
  • Indian rosewood binding
  • PU finish

Dolce is smaller than a standard guitar having a 630mm scale length.

It is designed with traditional Spanish fan bracing, solid cedar top and mahogany sides and back.

With this material combined, there is no doubt Dolce can produce an excellent crisp tone. 

It also comes with Indian rosewood binding which can improve tone and musicality. 

By the way, Indian rosewood is one of the most famous tonewoods. It gives a zesty, sparkly, and sizzling sound with more articulations.

That is another reason why Dolce is an ideal choice for playing various types of music.

The PU finish also sets Dolce apart from other guitars in a similar price range.

 Pros 

  • Affordable
  • Easy playability
  • High-quality tones
  • Strong and durable
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Ideal for players with smaller hands
  • Comfortable usage

Cons

  • The tuner button looks fragile.

Martin LXK2 Little Martin

Martin & Co Inc is known for designing highly versatile guitars with excellent sound quality.

LXK2 is one of them! It is a portable guitar that comes with a lower price.

The structure and quality of LXK2 make it a must-have for travelers and students.

It’s a great workhorse guitar that is definitely suited for jamming with your family at home.

People think of LXK2 as a travel guitar because of minimal sound production. However, compared to other acoustic guitars, it can produce excellent and better quality tones.

Let’s delve deeper into the features of Martin LXK2 guitar!

  • Koa-grained HPL top, back, sides, and headstock
  • Rosewood fingerboard and bridge
  • Stratabond neck
  • Modified body size (23” scale length)

Martin LXK2 is suitable for playing in open spaces, especially if you’re into fingerpicking.

The sound may not be as loud and productive as full-sized guitars but enough to satisfy beginners.

The Martin LXK2 may not be your piece if you’re a professional. It could be excellent for hobby musicians with a good taste of music. 

The rosewood fingerboard and bridge create sweet and soft music which makes it ideal for lounge music.

The scale length of this Martin is 23” according to the concert model – Hollowbody type.

The Stratabond material on the neck contains a set of chrome tuning machines for enhanced playability and stability. 

Moreover, the oval-shaped neck makes it easier to hold compared to other Little Martin models.

The body also features Koa-grained HPL top, back, and sides with natural satin finishing.

Another good thing about the Martin LXK2 is the soft padded case which serves as protection when traveling.

Pros

  • Portable and lightweight
  • Affordable
  • Ideal for beginners
  • Strong and durability
  • Sweet and soft music

Cons

  • The guitar is not solid wood material.
  • Laminated areas 

How to Choose the Best Fingerstyle Guitar

String, playability, size, and price are the main factors to consider when choosing a guitar for fingerstyle.

Fingerpicking is a unique playing style that requires choosing the best instrument and eliminating the factors that can affect how you play. 

Steel String vs. Nylon String

Nylon strings are known to be softer and more gentle on your hands, so you don’t have to worry about calluses and pain when practicing.

On the other hand, a steel-string needs more tension and force to fret the notes correctly. It may also result in sore fingers. 

Playability

Comfort and playability are an essential factor when choosing a guitar – whether you are into fingerstyle or other techniques!

Playability refers to how easy you can fret and pluck the strings or how the neck feels when you’re playing.

Poor playability means poor guitar music!

High playability means excellent guitar music!

Comfort” and “playability” are entwined. All you need to remember is your physical comfort when choosing a guitar. 

If you feel comfortable, then you’re good to go!

Size

Body size is another consideration when choosing a guitar for fingerstyle style. 

It is essential to choose a guitar that compliments your stature.

It avoids discomfort and awkwardness when playing. 

You should also know that body size differs from each manufacturer.

Check the manufacturer’s information to know the exact size.

It is also essential to try playing with the guitar for a bit before buying it to ensure that it feels comfortable. 

Price

Do you need an expensive guitar for learning? I don’t think so!

There is no need to purchase an expensive guitar to get started.

There are tons of guitar choices for beginners.

On the other hand, if you need something grand and have the budget, go for the high-end guitar!

Conclusion

There is a guitar for everyone – whether you are a beginner, intermediate or advanced learner.

If your focus is fingerstyle, you need to look closely at the features and construction of the guitar before choosing it.

It will help if you look at the reviews online.

There are loads of choices in the market, budget-wise, or type. It can be overwhelming to choose at first sight if you are a fresher!

Price, playability, body type, and type of strings are a few factors to consider when choosing the right fingerstyle guitar. 

You should also look at other options in case your chosen guitar did not meet your needs.

All these factors direct to a primary goal: to help you play comfortably, learn quickly and explore other types of music.

Never sacrifice your comfort when playing. Stay comfy and confident to make the most out of your guitar. 

Lastly, with fingerstyle, sore fingers are expected! Do not be discouraged. The pain will disappear after you get used to fingerpicking.

Always practice and keep on learning!

Best of luck and happy practice!

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