An Essential Guide To The Best Classical Guitar For Beginners

Finding the best classical guitar for beginners is important! Let’s look at some classical options!

 

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In this free lesson you will learn…

  • The 5 best classical guitars for beginner players
  • How to know what to look for
  • The difference between a classical and acoustic guitar
  • Why pickup options are important

The Best Classical Guitar For Beginners Will Stick With You For Years To Come

As a newcomer to the amazing world of guitar, your desire to check out classical guitars as a possible first – or second, or tenth – instrument is right on the money!

Classical guitars can make a great first guitar for a few reasons.

  • First, the price range is such that you can definitely find a decent instrument that you can afford.
  • Second, the thick nylon strings of a classical guitar are comfortable and cushy, compared to how it feels to play a steel-stringed guitar.
  • Third, all you need is the guitar.

You don’t need an amp, pedals, a strap, cords, or even picks. Just get yourself one of these selections for best classical guitar for beginners and get to playing!

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In this article, we’ll explore the advantages of classical guitar in a little more depth, including size, feel, style, and tone considerations.

We’ll show you our top choices for best classical guitar for beginners and give you an idea why we’re leaning in those directions.

We’ll also prove to you that the word “classical” means so much more than “classical music.” Classical guitar is relevant and versatile, and everyone should have at least one!

Alright! Time to dive into the best classical guitar for beginners!

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Best Classical Guitar For Beginners: Why Classical?

First of all, let’s reassure ourselves of one thing: Considering buying a classical guitar does not mean you’re committing yourself to a life of playing only classical music.

  • The name “classical guitar” refers not only to a style or genre of music (Spanish or Flamenco guitar, Brazilian jazz, and, yes, classical music) but also to a specific type of instrument.
  • The fact that a certain type of guitar is called a classical guitar does not mean that the instrument itself is limited in that way.

Here are some key differences between classical and other guitars.

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Materials

A classical guitar is similar in appearance and materials to a steel string guitar. Both are acoustic guitars, meaning that they produce sound through the reverberations inside the guitar and not necessarily through electronics.

Classical and acoustic guitars can be plugged in, just as electric guitars can sometimes be heard if strummed while not plugged in, but these are built-in design features that make classical and acoustic guitars better suited for playing without any extra gear.

The classical guitar differs from a steel-string guitar in that the strings are made of nylon.

  • This means that classical guitar strings are thicker, softer, and easier to move.
  • They also attach to the guitar differently, and that means that the bodies of the guitars are designed differently to accommodate different levels of tension.

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Design

The design differences between classical and steel-string acoustic guitars are important in making the decision of which to buy.

  • The nylon strings of a classical guitar attach to the guitar differently than those on a steel-string acoustic guitar.
  • There’s an elegant little winding process on the classical guitar that you may either enjoy or hate.

Here’s Martin Guitars to give you some details on the process.

Additionally (and just as important), the body of a classical guitar tends to be noticeably smaller than that of a steel-string acoustic. This will definitely affect comfort.

  • The neck of a classical guitar is much wider than that of a steel-string acoustic.
  • This could make a difference if you have smaller hands and shorter fingers, although it does not have to be a deal-breaker.

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Tone

Your idea of a physically comfortable guitar may change over time, as you get more and more used to playing the instrument.

The same may not be true of the gaping differences in tone between a classical and a steel-string acoustic.

  • Due to the fact that we are all drawn to (and away from, sometimes) instruments because of the way they sound, be sure to play any guitar as much as you need to make sure you love it before buying.
  • As a result of the string design, classical strings have a much rounder, warmer and softer tone than steel-string acoustics, which tend to sound bright and sharp.

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Pro-Tip: We love them all, so we’re not going to come down on one side or the other of the classical-versus-steel-string debate ringing in your head right now.

We want you to find the guitar you’re happy with! Remember, you can always get another guitar later.

In the meantime if you’d like more information, check out this lesson!

Classical vs. Acoustic Guitar: 10 Must-Know Differences

Best Classical Guitar for Beginners: Yamaha C40II

If your first guitar is going to be a classical guitar, congratulations! 

They’re lovely and easy to learn on, and the relative comfort of the strings more than makes up for the size difference in the neck.

The Yamaha C40 boasts several appointments that qualify it to be the best classical guitar for beginners.

  • First, it’s designed to be a beginner’s instrument.
  • It is priced extremely reasonably, and as with all Yamaha guitars, the quality of the instrument is just as reasonable.
  • This guitar goes for under $150, which makes it a low-risk investment in the best classical guitar for beginners category.

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  • The top of this guitar is spruce, which is just about the most popular wood for guitar tops because of its well-balanced resonance.
  • The neck of the guitar is rosewood, which is one of the most popular woods for guitar necks. This is because it’s smooth and it doesn’t go all wobbly every time the temperature changes.

Overall, this should be a comfortably inexpensive guitar.

Some guitars play more stiffly than others, so you’ll be looking for how easy it is to adjust the tuning pegs and how easy it is to grab chords.

Make sure you play the guitar you are buying, because at the low end of guitars is where you find manufacturing inconsistencies!

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Best Classical Guitar For Beginners: Cordoba Mini II

With steel-string guitars, the conventional wisdom is that generally the larger the body, the larger the sound.

That’s why people play dreadnought guitars and those big lovely Gibson jumbo body guitars. They are booming with sound!

  • With classical guitars, the nylon strings tend to neutralize the “bigger is better” effect.
  • Although size still does affect volume to some degree, it’s just not that big a deal with these instruments.

With that in mind, allow us to introduce you to the lovely and spirited Cordoba Mini II! This is the best classical guitar for beginners who want to start small.

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  • The Mini II is a line of guitars that have slightly narrower necks and smaller bodies, so they are a bit easier to play and definitely more portable.
  • To say that this guitar would be suitable for a child to begin learning on speaks only to the guitar’s proportions relative to those of a small human.

This is NOT a toy guitar! The top is made of flamed mahogany, a stable and beautiful tonewood. It is under $200, but it will hold a tune and play nicely.

The Mini also comes with a spruce top as well as regular mahogany. It’s a lovely guitar that you can use to play in your living room or at your gig.

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