There’s nothing quite like the sound of a classical guitar. After all, they’re called classical for a reason. These are the types of guitar that founded the era of modern-day music and have stood the test of the time by remaining as popular today as they have ever been.
The warmth, depth, and overall atmosphere that these guitars produce is simply out of this world. Whether you’re an experienced musician, or you’re just starting out on your own audio adventure, a classical guitar is suitable for everybody of any skill level.
However, for those of us where money is an issue, you might be put off by the expensive price tags of the top-quality guitars. But this doesn’t have to be the case. In fact, there’s an extensive range of classical guitars available today that you can call your own for less than $500.
Today, we’re going to take a look into this budget-conscious niche and, after much deliberation and consideration, we’ve managed to narrow down this vast market to just four of the best. From price, quality, build and extra features, these are the very best of what’s available today.
So, without further ado, here are the four best classical guitars for under $500 that will be everything you’re looking for in your own guitar.
CNBLUE Classical Acoustic Guitar Full Starter Beginner Set
To start off this list, we’ve chosen the very best beginner classical guitar set out there to help you enter the world of guitar with your very best foot first. This is a complete guitar set that comes with everything you need to get you started.
Firstly, this is a full-sized 39-inch acoustic guitar which means you’ll be going straight in with learning everything you need to know within the right scale. This guitar is also very lightweight, produced using solid basswood tops, curved into a beautiful dreadnought body. This means the guitar is super comfortable to hold and play.
In terms of sound, you’ll find sturdy and highly durable nylon strings which are ideal for playing all genres of music, especially classic rock, folk, and country. These strings are then tipped with easy tuning heads which are made from solid chrome and are geared, ensuring that your strings will stay in tune for longer.
As a complete beginner set, you really will have everything you need to get started. This includes a soft travel/storage bag to keep your guitar safe in transit or while you’re not using it, two picks to play your strings with, an extra nylon string to replace yours when one breaks and a cleaning cloth, so you can maintain the quality of your guitar for many years to come.
This kit is easily one of the most feature-rich, as well as being one of the most affordable which makes it a fantastic choice if you’re buying for yourself, or even as a gift to a friend or loved one, regardless of their skill level.
- A complete beginner set that comes with everything you need
- Solid chrome geared tuners to maintain your guitar’s tune settings
- The full-size 39-inch guitar which is ideal for professionals and beginners
- Lightweight, solid wooden build with a dreadnought design
- Perhaps not the best for a highly experienced musician looking for an outstanding sound
- Not suitable for left-handed players
Cordoba C3M Classical Acoustic Guitar
If you’re in need of a classical guitar that’s a little more professional and solely focuses on the quality of the instrument, rather than coming with all the beginner’s equipment, Cordoba might have the answer you’ve been looking for.
With this beautiful cedar top guitar, complete with a stunning all-natural finish, you’ll even be able to enjoy the hand inlaid rosette, finished off with a matte/natural satin. All in all, this is one gorgeous guitar you won’t be able to take your eyes off.
What’s more, this satin finish even helps to allow an increased amount of resonance and sustain in your notes, pick attacks and chords, ensuring your performance sounds as beautiful as this guitar looks.
The fretboard, fingerboard, and bridge are produced using rosewood, which is renowned for its durability and high-quality reliability. In short, this is a guitar that sounds great, looks great, and is built to stand the test of time.
However, what we really love about this guitar is the fact that it’s produced by Cordoba, a company set up back in 1997. This means you’ll get to enjoy over 20 years of instrument manufacturing experience, all of which is evident in this extremely affordable final product.
- Affordable price and suitable for guitarists of any skill level
- Beautiful wooden design with a natural satin finish
- Full-sized guitar measuring in at 650mm scale
- Golden tune mechanisms with pearl buttons
- Doesn’t come with a case (affordable when bought online)
- Feels sensitive and lightweight, but remains durable
Yamaha CG122MCH Solid Cedar Top Classical Guitar
Yamaha. One of the most iconic audio specialists in the audio industry, retaining this title for several decades, and all for a good reason. These manufacturers pride themselves on developing and producing high-quality instruments and audio equipment that is second to none.
This masterful level is evident in this acoustic classical guitar that is both affordable, reliable, and sounds amazing. This lightweight wooden guitar is topped with durable cedar wood and topped with a rosewood fingerboard, both of which are built to last and allow optimal resonance, guaranteeing the best sound.
The guitar also features a 3-ply neck construction which has been specially designed to help you minimize the risk of neck warp over time, which will ultimately render your guitar unplayable. With a beautiful natural matte finish that only compliments the sound you’re producing.
This particular model has been designed to a 25.6-inch scale, which means it’s ideal for professional players looking for an inexpensive option to experiment with, or a beginner who wants to learn the basics and own a guitar that will continue to perform as they better their skills.
What we really love about this acoustic masterpiece is the fact that it’s part of the Yamaha CG range. This means you’ll be able to enjoy all the benefits that come with this technology, including improved sound from their conventional counterparts, outstanding playability, and a beautiful aesthetic.
To summarize, this is simply a stunning guitar that you’ll fall in love with from the moment you hold it for the first time, and then for many years to come.
- A stunning guitar produced as part of the legendary CG Series
- 25.6-inch scale with 19 frets for effortless playability
- Lightweight wooden build crafted from cedar and rosewood
- A natural matte finish for gorgeous aesthetic and optimal resonance
- Not compatible with a strap of any kind (no knob)
- Lack of cosmetic detail, such as inlay or fret positions
Cordoba C7 SP Acoustic Nylon String Classical Guitar
Finally, to finish off this list in style, we’ve chosen the absolutely captivating Cordoba C7. While this guitar sits just under the $500 limit, if you’re looking for the ultimate guitar within this price range that comes with everything you need, including outstanding performance, this is it.
This model is produced using highly durable European spruce top wood, complete with Indian rosewood back and sides. This guarantees a professional quality build that is sure to last a lifetime if cared for properly.
This lightweight and reliable body are then topped with the industry-standard rosewood bridge and fingerboard, completing the level of superiority that this guitar oozes. Furthermore, the guitar is strung using outstanding Savarez Cristal Corum strings, all of which are set to a high 500CJ tension.
This setup means you’ll be able to enjoy a superior sound quality that over similar counterparts in this price are simply unable to achieve. This continues thanks to the responsive soundboard, which is used to create a much larger sound and an overall better tone that you and your audience are going to love.
If you take a look inside the guitar, you’ll be able to enjoy a fan-pattern bracing, all of which has been designed and positioned in the center of the soundboard. Not only does this provide more tension to the strings, but it also increases durability and the overall resonance of the guitar.
Included with your purchase, you’ll also be able to enjoy all the benefits that come from an authentic Cordoba gig bag, which ensures that your guitar stays protected while you’re not using it, or while you’re traveling to your next performance.
- Beautiful acoustic guitar made from outstanding international woods
- Strung using high-tension Savaraz Cristal Corum strings for optimal sound and tone
- Comes with an included gig/storage/travel bag for protection
- Fan-pattern bracing for best sound and build quality
- High end of the $500 budget
Choosing what guitar you have for your classical guitar is one of the most important decisions a musician will make.
However, any of the four guitars we’ve listed above are ideal choices in every sense, ensuring a great sound, easy playability, everything you need to perform, and all for an affordable price.