What's the Best Acoustic Guitar For Fingerstyle Playing?

14 minutes read

The best acoustic guitar for fingerstyle playing is one that is both comfortable to play and produces a rich, full tone. Look for a guitar with a smaller body size, as this will make it easier to reach around and pluck the strings with your fingers. A guitar with a solid wood top, such as spruce or cedar, will also provide a warm and resonant sound that is perfect for fingerstyle playing. Additionally, a wider neck and lower action can make it easier to play intricate fingerpicking patterns. Ultimately, the best acoustic guitar for fingerstyle playing is one that feels good in your hands and inspires you to create beautiful music.

Best Acoustic Guitars of May 2024

1
Yamaha FG800J Solid Top Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar, Natural

Rating is 5 out of 5

Yamaha FG800J Solid Top Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar, Natural

  • Solid Sitka spruce top
  • Nato and mahogany back & sides
  • Rosewood fingerboard
  • Rosewood bridge
2
Fender Acoustic Guitar, CD-60S, with 2-Year Warranty, Dreadnought Classic Design with Rounded Walnut Fingerboard, Glossed Finish, All-Mahogany Construction

Rating is 4.9 out of 5

Fender Acoustic Guitar, CD-60S, with 2-Year Warranty, Dreadnought Classic Design with Rounded Walnut Fingerboard, Glossed Finish, All-Mahogany Construction

  • One right-handed Fender CD-60S Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar
  • Dreadnought Body: This guitar’s dreadnought body shape resonates with a bold and rich bass tone, great for playing country, folk or bluegrass
  • Rock Steady Tuners: Chrome die-cast tuners help keep your guitar tuned with the perfect amount of tension, and they don't attract much dust or grime
3
Fender Squier Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar - Black Learn-to-Play Bundle with Gig Bag, Tuner, Strap, Strings, String Winder, Picks, Fender Play Online Lessons, and Austin Bazaar Instructional DVD

Rating is 4.8 out of 5

Fender Squier Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar - Black Learn-to-Play Bundle with Gig Bag, Tuner, Strap, Strings, String Winder, Picks, Fender Play Online Lessons, and Austin Bazaar Instructional DVD

  • The Squier SA-150 is a full-size steel-string acoustic that offers big sound at a small price.
  • This guitar also features scalloped "X"-bracing, mahogany neck and a durable dark-stained maple fingerboard to give you an instrument that looks as good as it sounds.
  • With its slim, easy-to-play neck and full-bodied dreadnought tone, the SA-150 is an ideal choice for all rookie strummers.
4
Squier by Fender Acoustic Guitar, with 2-Year Warranty, Dreadnought with Maple Fingerboard, Glossed Natural Finish, Mahogany Back and Side, Mahogany Neck, SA-150 Model

Rating is 4.7 out of 5

Squier by Fender Acoustic Guitar, with 2-Year Warranty, Dreadnought with Maple Fingerboard, Glossed Natural Finish, Mahogany Back and Side, Mahogany Neck, SA-150 Model

  • One right-handed Fender SA-150 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar
  • Dreadnought Body: This guitar’s dreadnought body shape resonates with a bold and rich bass tone, great for playing country, folk or bluegrass
  • Durable Materials: All-Laminate construction allows this guitar to last long and sound as great as it looks a an affordable price
5
Fender FA-25 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar, Beginner Guitar, with 2-Year Warranty, Includes Free Lessons, Natural

Rating is 4.6 out of 5

Fender FA-25 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar, Beginner Guitar, with 2-Year Warranty, Includes Free Lessons, Natural

  • One right-handed Fender Alternative Series Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar – a perfect beginner guitar for both kids and adults
  • Backed by a 75 year legacy of quality and craftsmanship -- the FA Series has all the sound and style of Fender's iconic acoustic guitars with specially designed features for beginners.
  • This guitar’s dreadnought body shape resonates with a bold and rich bass tone, great for playing country, folk or bluegrass
6
Jasmine S34C NEX Acoustic Guitar,Natural

Rating is 4.5 out of 5

Jasmine S34C NEX Acoustic Guitar,Natural

  • Gloss Natural
  • Dreadnought body style
  • Laminate Spruce top
  • Sapele back and sides
  • Rosewood Fingerboard
7
Yamaha F325D Acoustic Guitar, Natural

Rating is 4.4 out of 5

Yamaha F325D Acoustic Guitar, Natural

  • The perfect guitar for beginners
  • Legendary Yamaha build quality
  • Spruce Top
  • Rosewood Fretboard
  • Chrome Tuners
8
Ibanez AW54OPN Artwood Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar - Open Pore Natural

Rating is 4.3 out of 5

Ibanez AW54OPN Artwood Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar - Open Pore Natural

  • Dreadnought body
  • Solid mahogany top
  • Mahogany back & sides
  • Mahogany neck
  • Rosewood bridge and fretboard


What is the significance of the scale length on an acoustic guitar for fingerstyle techniques?

The scale length of an acoustic guitar refers to the distance between the nut and the bridge, and it plays a significant role in the tone and playability of the instrument, particularly for fingerstyle techniques.


A longer scale length generally results in higher string tension and more resistance, which can be beneficial for fingerstyle players looking for a strong and clear tone. It can also provide more sustain and volume to the notes being played.


On the other hand, a shorter scale length typically offers lower string tension and easier playability, making it more suitable for players with smaller hands or those who prefer a lighter touch when playing fingerstyle.


Ultimately, the choice of scale length for fingerstyle playing will depend on individual preferences and playing style. Some may prefer the added clarity and power of a longer scale length, while others may appreciate the ease of playing with a shorter scale length. It's important for players to experiment with different scale lengths to find the one that best suits their needs and preferences.


How to assess the intonation of an acoustic guitar for fingerstyle techniques?

Assessing the intonation of an acoustic guitar for fingerstyle techniques involves checking the accuracy of the pitch of each fretted note along the fretboard. Here are some steps to assess the intonation of an acoustic guitar:

  1. Tune the guitar: Before assessing the intonation, make sure your guitar is tuned accurately. Use an electronic tuner to ensure that each string is in tune.
  2. Play open strings: Play each string open and listen to the pitch of the note. Make sure each string is in tune and there are no buzzing or rattling noises.
  3. Check fretted notes: Play a note on each fret along the fretboard and compare it to the corresponding pitch of the open string. Make sure that the fretted note is in tune with the open string. If the note is sharp or flat, the intonation of the guitar may need adjustment.
  4. Adjust the saddle: If you find that the fretted notes are consistently sharp or flat compared to the open string, you may need to adjust the intonation of the guitar. Most acoustic guitars have an adjustable saddle that can be moved slightly to correct the intonation. Consult a professional guitar technician if you are not comfortable making this adjustment yourself.
  5. Test again: After adjusting the saddle, play the same fretted notes along the fretboard and check if the intonation has improved. Continue to fine-tune the saddle until the fretted notes are in tune with the open strings.
  6. Practice fingerstyle techniques: Once you have assessed and adjusted the intonation of your acoustic guitar, practice various fingerstyle techniques to ensure that the guitar plays in tune and responds accurately to your playing.


By following these steps, you can assess the intonation of an acoustic guitar for fingerstyle techniques and ensure that your instrument is set up properly for optimal performance.


What is the advantage of having a radiused fingerboard on an acoustic guitar for fingerstyle techniques?

Having a radiused fingerboard on an acoustic guitar can provide several advantages for fingerstyle techniques:

  1. Comfort: The curved shape of a radiused fingerboard can make it more comfortable for your fingers to move across the fretboard, reducing strain and fatigue during long playing sessions.
  2. Better accessibility: The curvature of a radiused fingerboard can make it easier to reach and play complex chord shapes and intricate fingerpicking patterns, allowing for more fluid and precise playing.
  3. Enhanced playability: The radius of the fingerboard can help in reducing buzzing and fretting out, providing a smoother and more consistent playing experience.
  4. Improved intonation: A radiused fingerboard can help improve intonation by allowing for more accurate finger placement and pressure on the frets.


Overall, a radiused fingerboard can enhance the overall playability and comfort of an acoustic guitar, making it ideal for fingerstyle techniques.


How to incorporate percussive elements into fingerstyle playing on an acoustic guitar?

Incorporating percussive elements into fingerstyle playing on an acoustic guitar can add rhythm and dynamics to your playing. Here are some tips on how to incorporate percussive elements into your fingerstyle playing:

  1. Use your thumb or fingers to tap the body of the guitar to create a percussive sound. You can tap different parts of the guitar, such as the top, sides, or back, to produce different tones and rhythms.
  2. Use your fingers to slap the strings of the guitar, either individually or in a strumming motion, to create a percussive effect. Experiment with different rhythms and techniques to add variation to your playing.
  3. Try incorporating muted strums or percussive slaps in between your fingerpicking patterns to add a rhythmic element to your playing. This can help create a driving groove and add energy to your performance.
  4. Experiment with combining percussive elements with other guitar techniques, such as hammer-ons, pull-offs, and slides, to create unique and dynamic sounds.
  5. Practice incorporating percussive elements into your fingerstyle playing by starting with simple patterns and gradually increasing the complexity as you become more comfortable with the technique. Remember to focus on maintaining a steady rhythm and keeping your playing clean and precise.


Overall, incorporating percussive elements into fingerstyle playing on an acoustic guitar can enhance your musical expression and create a more dynamic and engaging performance. Experiment with different techniques and rhythms to find what works best for your playing style and add your own personal touch to make it your own.


What is the role of a cutaway on an acoustic guitar for fingerstyle playing?

A cutaway on an acoustic guitar is a design feature that allows easier access to the higher frets of the guitar's neck. This can be particularly beneficial for fingerstyle playing, as it allows for easier reach and the ability to play more intricate and complex chords and melodies in the higher registers of the guitar.


Overall, having a cutaway on an acoustic guitar can make playing more comfortable and can give the player greater flexibility in their technique, making it easier to explore a wider range of musical possibilities.


What is the best type of binding for a fingerstyle acoustic guitar?

The best type of binding for a fingerstyle acoustic guitar is typically a simple and functional binding made of wood or plastic. This type of binding helps protect the edges of the guitar and adds a nice finishing touch to the overall appearance of the instrument. Some guitarists prefer a more ornate binding with intricate designs, but ultimately the best choice depends on personal preference and the desired aesthetic of the guitar.

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