The future of music

10 Best Beginner Electric Guitars 

December 29, 2023
best beginner electric guitars

Do you want to learn how to play the electric guitar?

Well, the first thing you should do is find an electric guitar that suits you best – but that’s easier said than done, right?

Buying a first guitar can be a bit overwhelming and daunting, but it’s also very exciting; if you know where and how to look for it.

To make this process easier for you, we dedicate today’s post to reviews of the best beginner electric guitars you can buy.

From cheap entry-level electric guitars to professional high-end models, there’s something for everyone here.

Let’s dive in!

1. Squier Classic Vibe ‘50s Stratocaster – Best electric guitar for beginners 

Squier Classic Vibe ‘50s Stratocaster Electric Guitar for beginners.

Let’s start with one of the best electric guitars for beginners in the market – Squier Classic Vibe ‘50s Stratocaster.

Compared to some other options, it’s reasonably priced, especially if you consider its value.

It looks amazing, and you can choose from 2-color Sunburst, Black, Fiesta Red, and White Blonde finish.

But this entry-level electric sounds just as beautiful as it looks.

It’s made of quality materials, featuring a pine body, maple neck, and maple fingerboard.

It’s also well set-up so you don’t have to waste your time on getting it ready once you take it out of the box.

All in all, if you’re looking for a reputable electric guitar that will accompany you on your guitar lessons, Squier Classic Vibe ‘50s Stratocaster is an excellent choice.

2. Yamaha Pacifica 112V – Best for versatility 

Yamaha Pacifica 112V Electric Guitar for beginners.

The Yamaha Pacifica 112V is hands down one of the best electric guitars for beginners you can find. 

It offers excellent build quality and playability, and it’s ideal for newcomers as well as more experienced players. 

It has an alder body, maple neck, and rosewood fingerboard, and it comes with 1 Alnico humbucker and 2 Alnico single coils.

Regarding appearance, the 112V  looks stunning, and you can choose from Natural Satin, Old Violin Sunburst, Raspberry Red, Sonic Blue, Black, and Silver Metallic finish.

When it comes to hardware, it has vintage-style vibrato with a block saddle, although it provides a rather modern sound and feel. 

All things considered, the Yamaha Pacifica 112V is one of the top electric guitars that won’t let you down.

And it’s versatile enough to fit any style and genre. 

3. PRS SE Standard 24 – Best premium beginner guitar 

PRS SE Standard 24 Electric Guitar for beginners.

If you’re ready to spend a bit more (but not too much), you should check out PRS SE Standard 24.

This beauty could be categorized as a high-end electric guitar for beginners, and many players wouldn’t put it in the beginner category at all.

Nevertheless, PRS SE Standard 24 is regarded as one of the best beginner electrics in the market, offering incredible versatility and playability.

Due to its PRS 85/15 Humbuckers, it provides clarity and a wide tonal range.

On top of that, it’s very enjoyable to play, thanks to its wide-thin neck and distinctive PRS neck joint design.

Finally, since it’s a bit pricey, you’ll get quality materials like mahogany and maple. 

4. Squier Bullet Mustang – Best for kids 

Squier Bullet Mustang Electric Guitar

Squier Bullet Mustang is another fantastic entry-level guitar.

It has a maple neck, basswood body, Indian laurel fingerboard, and two humbucker pickups.

It’s affordable, well-made, and versatile, and it offers great value for money. 

Since it’s relatively small and lightweight, it’s a great choice for beginners, including younger players and kids. 

Without a doubt, the Squier Bullet Mustang is a perfect first guitar, providing excellent playability and tuning stability.

But this is not just a simple entry-level electric guitar – the sound of this guitar will satisfy a trained ear as well.

That said, if you’re looking for a low-priced electric guitar for beginners that will accompany you through your formative years, you can’t go wrong with the Squier Bullet Mustang. 

5. Yamaha Revstar Element RSE20 – Guitar with a unique look

Yamaha Revstar Element RSE20 Electric Guitar for beginners.

If you want to buy a top beginner electric guitar that will help you stand out from the crowd, we recommend the Yamaha Revstar Element RSE20.

This eye-catching electric guitar looks really special, and there are several colors to choose from.

Apart from appearance, the Revstar Element RSE20 has a fantastic playing neck, so it’s very comfortable to play.

When it comes to pickups, it comes with two YGD-designed VH3-covered humbuckers, so you don’t have to worry about volume.

All of that makes the Yamaha Revstar Element RSE20 an ideal first electric guitar.

6. Epiphone Les Paul Studio – Best for hard rock and metal 

Epiphone Les Paul Studio Electric Guitar

If you’re interested in genres like rock, hard rock, and metal, you should take a closer look at the Epiphone Les Paul Studio.

This is the modern version of the 80s classic originally intended for guitar players who prefer the classic Les Paul sound.

This popular model features Epiphone-designed Alnico Classic PRO humbuckers with push/pull volume controls for coil splitting, as well as CTS potentiometers for the tone controls.

It also looks stunning, especially the black model, but you can also get it in Alpine White, Ebony, Wine Red, and Smokehouse Burst finish. 

All in all, if you’re dreaming about the Gibson Les Paul but you want something more affordable, the Epiphone Les Paul Studio might be a perfect solution. 

7. Gretsch G2420 Streamliner – Best Gretsch guitar 

Gretsch G2420 Streamliner Electric Guitar

Gretsch created the Streamliner series with the goal of making affordable Gretsch guitars that fit any budget, without losing that recognizable Gretsch touch.

You can get a Gretsch G2420 Streamliner for an entry-level price, but you’ll still get an iconic electric guitar that will serve you well for many years to come.

The G2420 is ideal for beginners because it’s rather easy to play; although it might be a bit too big for kids.

Nevertheless, this eye-catching guitar should be on your shortlist.

It produces a vibrant tone and provides a comfortable and enjoyable playing experience that will help you bring your guitar skills to the next level. 

8. Ibanez Artcore AS53 – Best semi-hollow body 

Ibanez Artcore AS53 Electric Guitar

If you’re looking for a good beginner electric guitar with a semi-hollow body, the Ibanez Artcore AS53 is definitely worthy of consideration.

Electric guitars like this one are ideal for non-rock genres such as jazz and country.

Thanks to its neck design and quality materials, the Ibanez Artcore AS53 is durable and comfortable, and it produces a wonderful tone.

Plus, it’s not very expensive, especially if you consider what you’ll get for the money.

Of course, it all depends on what kind of first electric you want.

But if you’re interested in various non-rock genres, a well-made semi-hollow guitar like the Ibanez Artcore AS53 would undoubtedly meet your needs.

9. Epiphone SG Standard – Best on a budget

Epiphone SG Standard Electric Guitar

When searching for the best cheap electric guitars, you’ll probably come across Epiphone.

But Epiphone guitars are not those cheap electric guitars you should avoid; they are well-built and reliable, and they are definitely worth exploring. 

If you’re searching for electric guitars under $500, you should check out Epiphone SG Standard.

This affordable model sounds more expensive than it actually is.

It has surprisingly good pickups and excellent build quality, featuring a mahogany body and mahogany neck.

All in all, when it comes to the best cheap electric guitars, Epiphone SG Standard is a safe choice. 

10. Epiphone ES-335 Semi-Hollowbody – Best vintage tone 

Epiphone ES-335 Semi-Hollowbody Electric Guitar

Epiphone ES-335 is another fantastic semi-hollow body guitar for novices.

This beginner-friendly electric provides incredible playability, although its large body might not be very comfortable for kids.

But for adult beginners, the Epiphone ES-335 is a dream.

It’s comfortable and easy to play, and it provides a resonant, vintage tone ideal for a variety of genres, especially blues.

It’s crafted with a layered maple top, back, and sides, along with a solid maple tone block for fantastic sustain and warmth.

In other words, it’s well-built and durable, and it will certainly make your guitar learning journey more interesting and enjoyable. 

How to Choose the Best Beginner Electric Guitar for You

Choosing the best entry-level electric guitar for you is not an easy task.

But buying your first electric guitar doesn’t have to be daunting – after all, you’re starting your music journey, and that’s something to be excited about!

Not to mention the feeling when you get that guitar and hold it in your hands for the first time…

But let’s not get carried away – first thing first.

To determine what kind of electric guitar you need, you have to think about your goals, budget, and priorities.

All of these elements will help you narrow down your list and find a model that meets your needs.

But guitars also come in different shapes and sizes – so what does that mean for you as a beginner? 

What Guitar Body Shape Should I Choose?

There are all kinds of electric guitars available in the market, but there are two main categories of electric guitars: single-cutaway and double-cutaway guitars.

Single-cutaway guitar sounds warmer and fuller, and it’s usually 4-5 lbs heavier than a double-cut guitar.

The Fender Telecaster and Gibson Les Paul are the most popular single-cut guitars.

Electric Guitar Body

Double-cut guitars will provide you with better upper fret access, and they tend to be lighter and more comfortable.

The number of cutaways on an electric guitar also has an effect on the overall tone, but that difference is not so significant, and if you’re a beginner, you probably won’t notice it. 

Nevertheless, the shape of the electric guitar will determine how you feel while you’re playing it; so, make sure you find a comfortable guitar that fits you well. 

What About Neck Profile? 

Another thing that will affect your playing experience is the neck profile of your guitar. 

The term neck profile refers to the shape of the back of a guitar neck in cross-section.

So what type of neck profile should you opt for? 

Well, there actually isn’t one shape that’s better than the other – it’s a matter of personal preference and playing comfort.

The C-shaped neck profile is one of the most common neck profiles – C-shaped necks have a comfortable oval profile that works well for most playing styles. 

The ‘C’ neck profile is also suitable for beginners. 

The V-shaped neck comes in two popular versions – a more rounded “soft” V, and a more pointed “hard” V, often used in classical instruments too.

The third popular neck shape is the U-shaped neck profile – it’s chunky and rounded, and it’s ideal for players with larger hands.

Pickup Types

Even if you’re a newcomer, you probably know that pickups are the heart and soul of electric guitar.

It’s a device that turns the vibrations of guitar strings into electrical signals and therefore allows the sound of your guitar to be processed and played through a speaker.

Now, there are many different pickup types to choose from.

Single coils and humbuckers are the most popular guitar pickups.

Single-coil pickups are the first electric pickups to be invented, and they’re still the most popular choice.

They’re known for their sharp tone and clarity, but they have more feedback than humbucker pickups, and that’s why many rock and metal guitar players tend to avoid them.

Humbucker pickups have less feedback, and they generally produce a thicker, warmer, and bigger output.

They use two magnet coils wound in reverse to one another, so it’s possible to cancel out the hums.

Epiphone also created mini humbuckers that produce a smaller amount of signal compared to humbuckers.

Some electric guitars feature a mixture of single coils and humbucker pickups, which is a great solution as well.

Piezo pickups work in a slightly different way as they are located inside the bridge of the guitar and pick up the vibrations of the string and guitar.

Piezo pickups are popular in acoustic guitars, but they’re sometimes used with electric guitars in order to create a more acoustic sound.

What Is the Best Tonewood for Electric Guitars?

Another element that affects the overall tone and sound of the electric guitar is the type of wood.

The weight of the electric guitar is also determined by the wood used, so make sure you get a beginner-friendly electric guitar that is comfortable and easy to play. 

But what are the best woods for electric guitars?

Electric Guitars

Generally, the denser the wood, the better sustain an instrument will have.

That said, some of the woods used to make electric guitars include well-seasoned hardwoods like maple, walnut, ash, alder, and mahogany for the solid body. 

Mahogany is a warm, resonant tonewood, and it’s often used by Gibson.

Some manufacturers combine it with a brighter wood such as maple to bring out higher-range frequencies.

Fender often uses alder, a timber that provides an even frequency response, and for a smaller number of instruments they use ash.

Basswood is another popular choice because it’s easily sourced; it’s a cheaper option, but it has a nice warm and resonant tone. 

Which Brands Make the Best Electric Guitars? 

If you want to buy a reliable electric guitar that won’t let you down, you should opt for a trusted brand,

Luckily, all the best guitar brands produce electric guitars for beginners.

And some of the best beginner electric guitars come from Epiphone, Squier, Yamaha, and PRS.

Gretsch and Ibanez are also known for producing amazing electric guitars, and Fender has a long-lasting reputation as well. 

How Much Should I Spend on a Beginner Electric Guitar?

Now that you know what to look for in a beginner acoustic guitar, you’re probably wondering how much you will spend on a guitar.

Well, that depends on how much you’re willing to invest in your guitar. 

If you’re a beginner, you don’t have to spend a fortune on your first electric guitar.

Entry-level guitars usually cost between $100 to $400.

However, you should avoid the cheapest electric guitars as they’re often made of poor-quality materials. 

You should be able to find a good beginner electric guitar for around $300. 

Electric Guitar and other music equipments

Most electric guitars fall in the $600 to $900 price range, so if you want a well-made, durable guitar, you have to spend a bit more. 

High-end electric guitars, on the other hand, cost more than $1000.

But you don’t have to buy an expensive electric guitar if you’re taking beginner guitar lessons.

Thankfully, there are many great beginner electric guitars available in the market right now.

Essential Electric Guitar Care Tips 

Whether you intend to buy a cheap electric guitar for beginners or a premium-quality guitar, you need to take proper care of your instrument.

If you want your electric guitar to serve you well for many years to come, you should keep in mind the following tips:

  • Wipe the strings after you play
  • Wash your hands before practice
  • Keep your guitar in the case
  • Keep your guitar away from moisture
  • Tuck your cable when using a strap
  • Keep it clean (you can wipe the neck and body of the guitar with a cotton t-shirt)

Guitar Lessons for Beginners

Once you buy the perfect electric guitar for you, you can start your guitar-learning journey!

Electric guitar is not the easiest instrument to learn, but it’s also not too demanding, especially if you already have some experience or basic music theory knowledge.

But even if you’ve never played an instrument before, learning the basics of electric guitar isn’t so hard.

However, you need to approach your learning process in the right way – you need to take it one step at a time, and you need to find a reliable learning source.

The good news is that now is probably the best time to start learning electric guitar; there are many great online guitar lessons and apps worth exploring, and the world of online learning is really flourishing. 

The best online guitar lessons are convenient and affordable, and they will allow you to focus on what really matters to you. 

You can also find an online guitar teacher who will help you achieve your goals. 

Either way, acquiring guitar skills and developing musicality takes time – so don’t think guitar learning apps and courses will turn you into a guitar pro overnight.  

Learning how to play the electric guitar can also be very challenging, and if you want to become a great musician, you’ll need to invest a lot of time and energy into it.

Best Beginner Electric Guitars – Final Thoughts 

All of the best beginner electric guitars we overviewed today are well-made, popular, and reliable.

That said, if you’re ready to buy a guitar that will help you improve your skills and find your style, you can’t go wrong with any of these models.

However, each guitar has its own characteristics, so you should also think about your goals, budget, and priorities and choose your first guitar accordingly.

Either way, we wish you all the best on your guitar-learning journey! 

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Will Fenton

Will, the founder of MIDDER, is a multifaceted individual with a deep passion for music and personal finance. As a self-proclaimed music and personal finance geek, he has a keen eye for futuristic technologies, especially those that empower creators and the public.

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