Best Acoustic Electric Guitar under $300

10 Best Acoustic Electric Guitars Under $300

With acoustic electric guitars becoming more and more popular, you probably dreamt of adding one to your collection. The thought of that may be music to your ears, but the problem comes when you have to pick the best one from numerous options in the market within a limited budget.

The ability to find a guitar with excellent sound, beautiful build, and superb playability when you are on a tight budget is a skill that all guitarists should possess, but honing that skill will take time.  Luckily, we are here to help because we understand that it can be frustrating, especially if you are new to guitar playing.

You can find a tremendous acoustic electric guitar for under $300 but keep in mind that it may take time. However, you should not despair if you do not have time to extensively explore the market, testing various acoustic electric guitars from different brands. We have compiled a list containing 10 outstanding acoustic electric guitars under $300.

We know that it can be challenging to know the essential features in an acoustic electric guitar and which ones you can forgo. For this reason, we have also included a guide that highlights the factors you should consider when picking the best acoustic electric guitar. Well, let’s get to it.

Yamaha FGX800C

Features

  • Solid Spruce top.
  • Okume/Nato body.
  • Rosewood fingerboard.
  • SYSTEM66 + SRT Piezo Pickup.

Yamaha continues to serve the market with high-quality guitars of different kinds and prices, from affordable to expensive ones. We could not do a piece on the best acoustic electric guitars under $300 without including the Yamaha FGX800C.

The spruce top is an attractive and Grade A feature to find in a guitar that costs less than $300. The body and neck are made of Nato and Okume, which are relatively lightweight and quite resonantly like Mahogany. Although this guitar does not2 have the traditional tonewood choice, it offers a classic acoustic tone.

It has a single cutaway, so you can comfortably access the upper frets. Due to the new bracing design, the FGX800C brings out its natural sound while maintaining the topwood’s durability. It is a dreadnought guitar with die-cast tuners, Rosewood Bridge and fingerboard, 3-band EQ piezo pickup, and adjustable truss rod.

Pros

  • A fine, reliable built-in tuner.
  • Smooth playability after breaking in and tuning.
  • Provides a full and crisp sound when unplugged or plugged.
  • Great electronics.

Cons

  • Requires an amp to generate loud sound.
  • Frets require levelling, but that should not be a big deal.

https://www.amazon.com/Yamaha-FGX800C-Cutaway-Acoustic electric-Guitar/dp/B01DW6A6E8

Fender CD-60SCE

Features

  • Solid spruce top.
  • Mahogany body.
  • Mahogany neck.
  • Walnut fingerboard.
  • Fishman classic design pickup/ preamp.

Fender is another famous company that makes top-ranking guitars for people on a budget and looking for premium products. If you are on a budget and looking for a guitar with excellent sound and electronics and great playability, look no further because the Fender CD-60SCE offers these capabilities and more.

It is a dreadnought guitar with a solid Spruce top that gives out a crisp sound and good volume. The CD-60SCE is ideal for professional and intermediate players with enough confidence to use it on stage.

It has an easily playable neck and a Venetian cutaway, making it easy to access the upper frets. The Fishman classic preamp/pickup design system replicates the clean, clear, and bright the guitar’s classic tonewood.

Although it does not generate the strongest voice available in the market, it produces excellent sound for a guitar that costs under $300. You can have this sleek acoustic electric guitar in a sunburst, natural, or simple black finish.

Pros

  • Stunning design and appearance.
  • Excellent deep and bright sound.
  • Easy playability.
  • Low string action.
  • The solid spruce top offers excellent projection.
  • Inside tuner.

Cons

  • Inferior pickguard.
  • Produces fret buzz a times.

https://www.amazon.com/Fender-CD-60SCE-Dreadnought-Acoustic electric-Guitar/dp/B01667J2QS

Epiphone EJ-200SCE 

Features

  • Select Maple body.
  • Rosewood fingerboard and Bridge.
  • Maple neck.
  • SlimTaper neck.
  • Jumbo cutaway body shape.
  • Solid Spruce top.

Epiphone is well-known for providing guitarists with well-designed guitars that deliver fantastic performances but at budget-friendly prices. The Epiphone EJ-200SCE can easily catch the attention of anyone because of its original design and color scheme.

It is available in three colors, dark black, classic light sandy, and the rich vintage sunburst, which fades into black close to the edges with a unique dandelion pattern on the pickguard. With the maple body can be sure to generate warm sounds regardless of what and where you play.

Although a laminate top is not a favorite of many people, it is firm and stable, making it an excellent choice for guitarists that travel a lot for gigs and tours and are afraid to break their fragile guitars. The EJ-200SCE can fill a room with clear and crisp sound

It sounds great whether you use an amplifier or not interfere with your performance with any buzzing sound. The guitar allows you to portray your skills, whether in a studio, live sessions, or jamming with your family and friends.

Pros

  • Rich and loud tone.
  • Smooth action.
  • Accommodates the requirement of players of all levels.
  • Affordable.
  • Great craftsmanship.
  • Great value.

Cons

  • Not entirely solid.

https://www.amazon.com/Epiphone-EJ-200SCE-Acoustic electric-Sunburst/dp/B0002F6PKW

Yamaha APX600

Features

  • Thin-line cutaway body shape.
  • 25 inches scale length.
  • Spruce top.
  • Rosewood fingerboard.
  • Rosewood bridge.
  • Gloss body finish.
  • SYSTEM65 + SRT Piezo pickups.

Yamaha came up with the first acoustic electric guitar in 1987, and it was stage-ready. The new Yamaha APX600 has an undersaddle piezo pickup, the Yamaha SRT transducer, and natural feedback and tone rejection to generate impeccable sound quality.

With this guitar, you can shape your sound easily to stand out at any stage. The APX600 is an iteration of the 1987 acoustic-guitar but with a thin-line cutaway body to facilitate excellent playability.

The spruce top has new scalloped bracing to offer an excellent bass response, while the narrow frets on a 25-inch scale length ensure that you remain comfortable while playing. Besides its superb playability, it is also loud despite the slim body thanks to the rosewood bridge and fretboard and the Spruce top.

You will appreciate its tone clarity when plugged into an amp. Considering its outstanding craftsmanship, popular tonewoods, excellent sound, and flawless finish, all in an acoustic electric guitar that costs under $300, this guitar indeed offers excellent value.

Pros

  • Beautiful finish.
  • Great build.
  • Great playability.
  • Robust sound.
  • Great value.
  • Onboard tuner and pickups work well.

Cons

  • It is slightly smaller because it is not a full-size guitar.

https://www.amazon.com/Yamaha-APX600-BL-Acoustic electric-Guitar/dp/B078WXWNBT/ref=pd_lpo_267_t_0/144-5019772-9476027?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B078WXWNBT&pd_rd_r=7bdb881c-b20f-44fa-aa18-97f95a8172a3&pd_rd_w=1SxDp&pd_rd_wg=1l6gm&pf_rd_p=7b36d496-f366-4631-94d3-61b87b52511b&pf_rd_r=4QTP79Q33YXSCPM792C7&psc=1&refRID=4QTP79Q33YXSCPM792C7

Ibanez PF Series PF15ECE

Features

  • Cutaway Dreadnought body shape.
  • Spruce top.
  • Mahogany neck.
  • Glossy top finish.
  • Ibanez Advantage bridge pins.
  • Chrome die-cast tuners.

This cutaway dreadnought guitar ensures that you play comfortably and efficiently. It has an AEQ-2T preamp and undersaddle pickup to help project the guitar’s true tone to an amplifier. The mahogany side and back laminate Spruce top produce warm and rich lows while sustaining the sweat.

Ibanez eliminates a common problem found in cheaper guitars, particularly the plastic bridge pins, using the Advantage bridge pins that you can secure in place effortlessly. Its aesthetics and build quality are some of this guitar’s attractive features.

The gold die-cast tuners, pearl dot inlays, and gloss black finish give it a distinguished look. The natural look of the Ibanez PF Series PF15ECE matches the familiar dreadnought acoustic tone. 

It is an ideal acoustic electric guitar for individuals or kids who want to learn how to play because it will serve you for a long time and offers a great playability. You get all that for under $300. 

Pros

  • Affordable.
  • Complete dreadnought sound.
  • Cutaway design for accessing the upper frets.
  • Fishman Sonicore electronics.

Cons

  • Laminate construction.
  • A few complaints about the quality of the strings.

https://www.amazon.com/Ibanez-PF15ECE-Dreadnought-Cutaway-Acoustic electric/dp/B001R2K9G0

Ibanez AW54CEOPN Acoustic Electric Guitar

Features

  • Cutaway dreadnought body shape.
  • Solid mahogany top.
  • 25.6-inch scale length.
  • Rust Birch Laminate neck wood.
  • Chrome Die-Cast Tuners.
  • Fishman Sonitone Pickup.

Under $300, the Ibanez AW54CEOPN is quite impressive, combining affordability with performance and some premium touches. The solid Mahogany guitar features a classic dreadnought body, laminated sides and back, 25.6 inches scale length, and a single cutaway.

It has rustic aesthetics due to the open pore finish, but that does not make a massive difference in the sound. The satin neck finish is quite hand-friendly, so you can move up and down comfortably, allowing you to generate excellent performances.

The simple, style guitar with a vintage appeal has a beautiful tortoiseshell pickguard. Besides the looks, the AW54CEOPN is equipped with tech like the Fishman Sonicore pickup to aid performance and tone.

Even if unplugged, it has a lovely rich tone, natural projection, and resonance. Playing with an amp delivers a pleasing experience, but the limited controls may interfere with its versatility.

Pros

  • Impressive vintage look with rosewood and mahogany fretboard.
  • Durable and resistant to climatic conditions.
  • Satin finish and rustic aesthetics for smooth playability.
  • Natural projection.

Cons

  • Limited amp controls.
  • Stock strings may need replacement after a while.

https://www.amazon.com/Ibanez-AW54CEOPN-Dreadnought-Acoustic electric/dp/B00HWIRQXM

Fender FA-125CE

Features

  • Nato neck.
  • Cutaway dreadnought body shape.
  • Hardwood fretboard.
  • Fishman/ Fender pickup system.
  • Spruce laminated top.
  • Laminated Basswood sides and back.

The Fender FA-125CE is a testament that you can get an affordable acoustic electric Fender guitar. The all-laminated build, spruce top, and basswood sides and back make it a durable and sturdy instrument. Since it is a dreadnought, you can produce warm mid-range and deep, rich low ends from it.

The C-shaped Nato neck of this 25.3-inch scale length and 20 frets allows effortless playability for prolonged periods without getting exhausted and lets you access the upper frets easily. Fishman electronics ensure that you generate and enjoy amplified acoustic sounds.

It is also equipped with die-cast tuners, chrome finish, and walnut bridge, and die-cast tuners. A good design and appearance do not mean much if the guitar does generate appealing sound, and the Fender FA-125CE projects sound over a long distance. The preamp and pickup combination renders the guitar’s acoustics on an amplifier or PA.  

Pros

  • Pickups provide crisp sound.
  • Built-in tuners facilitate easy tuning.
  • Full, clear sound.
  • Great build.

Cons

  • The sharp edges in specific models may need smoothening.
  • Not an excellent choice for seasoned guitarists.

https://www.amazon.com/Fender-FA-125CE-Dreadnought-Cutaway-Acoustic electric/dp/B07TT83XJ2

Jameson Full Size Thinline Acoustic Electric Guitar

Features

  • Nato/rosewood top.
  • Rosewood fingerboard.
  • Spruce neck.
  • White dot inlays.

Jameson Full Size Thinline is a quality, high performing instrument that comes at pocket-friendly prices. The rosewood neck, white dot inlays, spruce sides, and top and black-to-blue glossy finish may not seem premium materials, but they work and make the guitar aesthetically appealing.

The guitar’s hardware incorporates an onboard stock pickup and built-in EQ, translating to bright, mid-range sound with multiple audio settings that you can use to please the crowd.

The die-cast tuners function excellently, reliable, and resemble those found in expensive guitars. However, make sure you do not strum extremely hard to avoid having tuning problems.

It produces mid-range punch, high trebles, and even solid, decent bass frequencies that beginner and even intermediate players will enjoy. Besides all these, you will also get additional accessories to help you begin your journey on a high note. These include guitar picks set and a gig bag.

Pros

  • Budget-friendly.
  • It is a full-size guitar.
  • Stock pickup and built-in EQ.
  • Comes with extra freebies.
  • High Gloss Dark Blueburst Finish.
  • Accurate, reliable Die-cast tuners.

Cons

  • A few quality control problems.
  • Produces thin sound when plugged in. 

https://us.amazon.com/dp/B003WGJYWE/ref=emc_b_5_i

Epiphone PR-4E

Features

  • Spruce Laminate top.
  • Mahogany neck and body.
  • Rosewood fingerboard.
  • Epiphone undersaddle passive piezo pickup.

Considering that Epiphone is Gibson’s subsidiary, it is easy to see why their guitars are among the best. It is quite impressive how the manufacturer developed an extremely affordable guitar using high-quality Mahogany. The Mahogany back and side are combined with a strong mahogany neck and a spruce top.

The Epiphone PR-4E has white dot inlays, a rosewood fingerboard and 20 frets. The mahogany body is well known for producing a well-rounded sound that is strong and massive and bright and mellow. The solid neck does a pretty excellent job.

It comes with piezo pickups that do a pretty good job of shifting the unplugged sound to an amp or PA system. Additionally, the onboard die-cast tuners ensure that the guitar stays in tune together with the rosewood bridge.

Whether plugged in or unplugged, the Epiphone PR-4E generates bright and strong mid-range sound. You can also get a bit of bass, but it is not as striking as the other sounds. When plugged into an amp, you will get a realistic feel of what to expect from an acoustic guitar.

Pros

  • A fantastic value pack with a cable, amp, and many more.
  • Decent tonewood combination.
  • Great sound.
  • Great construction.

Cons

  • Mass-produced laminate guitar.

https://www.amazon.com/Epiphone-Acoustic electric-Guitar-Package/dp/B001FA9WW6

Oscar Schmidt OD312CE

Features

  • Spruce laminate top.
  • Mahogany neck and body.
  • Rosewood fingerboard.
  • Barcus Berry EQ4T pickup/ preamp.
  • Cutaway dreadnought style.
  • Chrome die-cast tuners.

The Oscar Schmidt OD312CE is a pretty great and affordable acoustic electric guitar despite its low- end electrics and laminate top. It comes with some great qualities like the dreadnought mahogany body, rosewood fretboard, completely adjustable truss rod, and cutaway.

The distinctive pickguard designs and Headstock Bridge give this guitar a professional identity and look. It comes in black, tobacco sunburst, natural colors, so you get to choose what works best for you. The cutaway on this dreadnought design ensures that you get to the upper frets more comfortably.

Although laminated tops generate less profound sound compared to solid wood guitars, they are less susceptible to scratches and weather conditions. They also maintain their shape and don’t buckle and are a preferred choice for some traveling musicians.

The Oscar Schmidt OD312CE produces a rich, well-rounded 12-string guitar sound and comes with an in-built preamp that is PA-ready. Although 12 strings guitars require more work while changing the strings and render your fingertips more susceptible to wear and tear, the OD312CE makes up for that with its choral beauty.

Pros

  • A pocket-friendly 12-string guitar.
  • Fun and easy to play.
  • Great sound.
  • Available in multiple finishes.

Cons

  • Cheap electronics.
  • Laminate top.

https://www.amazon.com/Oscar-Schmidt-OD312CE-12-Strings-Acoustic electric/dp/B005AT3E0O

What to Consider When Choosing the Ideal Acoustic Electric Guitar under $300

Considering the numerous options at your disposal, you are probably wondering how to narrow down the options to find the best one. Before committing to a particular acoustic electric guitar for under $300, consider the body style, your guitar skills, the pickups, and test the sound.

Your guitar skills

You will come across several amazing acoustic electric guitars at different price ranges. Although your budget plays a critical role in the guitar purchase process, the instruments you end up purchasing should match your skills.

Beginner players should go for simple acoustic electric guitars for easy playability and allow you to advance your skills. You can look into Yamaha, Epiphone, Fender, Taylor, Washburn, and Takamine for great affordable acoustic electric guitars for intermediate and beginner guitarists.

Body Style

Acoustic electric and acoustic guitars typically have similar body styles, but most acoustic electric guitars have a cutaway. You can find a jumbo, dreadnought, parlor, Triple 000, and many more. You should also consider the body size because you can either pick a small or large guitar.

Large guitars give out more bass response, fuller tone, and great projection, while small guitars produce bright sounds and have better mid-range responses.

Test the Sounds

This is a crucial step, especially if you are shopping for a guitar for the first time and looking for an acoustic electric guitar to serve you well. Do not shy away from testing the guitars, and if you do not know how to play, have someone with the knowledge to do it for you.

A first-hand experience with the guitar’s actual sound will give you a better idea about what you are getting. Besides the sound, it will also allow you to check the fretwork and its comfort and playability.

Check the Pickups

An acoustic electric guitar can either have active or passive pickups. Passive pickups do not need power because they are based on the copper-wound magnetic core, while active ones are internal preamps powered by a battery.

On the one hand, active pickups have cleaner headroom but a narrower dynamic range, while passive pickups are more reactive to feedback but a wider dynamic range.

Wood Type

You should also consider the guitar’s wood type to ensure that it works well with your playing style. The common ones include rosewood, spruce, and solid cedar top.

Spruce is the most common wood type used on guitar tops, and it is an excellent contestant because it is lightweight and durable. It is quite resonant, generates beautiful sound, and due to its robust qualities, it will not break even with a thin neck.

Cedar is usually has a darker color and sometimes deep rich red. It is suitable for players that play tenderly and lightly because solid cedar tops respond quite well when you fingerpick tenderly. However, you should be cautious when using this guitar because it loses part of its originality if you pluck it hard and lead to sound compression.

Rosewood is the most popularly used wood in guitars, with many coming with a rosewood neck, body, or both. It lets players generate warm, rich, and resonant sound while its distinct dark color makes you stand out.

FAQs

What should I expect from an acoustic electric guitar under $300?

For a budget of under $300, you will likely choose between a laminate or solid top acoustic electric guitar, built with unique or traditional tonewood combinations. The quality and feature vary based on how far under $300 you want to go, the intention behind every guitar model, and the brand.

Can an acoustic electric guitar under $300 sound good?

Definitely! Leading brands such as Yamaha, Epiphone, and Fender manufacture pocket-friendly guitars that generate great sound. All long as you test before making a purchase, you can get an excellent instrument on your hands. 

Does an acoustic electric guitar need an amp?

You cannot play an acoustic electric guitar without an amplifier, but it will have a lower volume, and you won’t have control over the effects. However, keep in mind that many acoustic electric guitars have slimmer bodies and other modifications that might lower the volume control or tonal quality when unplugged.

Acoustic electro guitars typically look like acoustic guitars and work the same way when not plugged into an amplifier. If you intend to play your acoustic electric guitar acoustically, you must keep in mind the low tonal quality and volume control.

Conclusion

All the acoustic electric guitars we’ve covered come highly recommended, so we hope one of them is your next instrument and you enjoy using it. There is plenty to account for when choosing a great guitar. Make sure you check to make careful consideration to make the right decision.

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