Best cheap acoustic guitars 2024: 7 budget acoustics with genuine pedigree

Fender California Newporter Player acoustic guitar on a yellow background
(Image credit: Future)

You'd be forgiven for thinking that a "cheap" instrument isn't going to be up to scratch. Unfortunately, the connotations of this word lead many players to think of a guitar with an unplayable action and a tone more akin to a wet cardboard box than a room-filling dreadnought. However, while it's true, there are a lot of sub-par guitars on the market, if you know where to look, you can find a top-tier instrument that won't cost the earth – as this guide to the best cheap acoustic guitars proves. 

So before we can come up with a list of affordable guitars, we first must decide what we mean by "cheap". We've chosen to define this category as any guitar that sits between $100 and $450, and of course, it must be highly playable, good-looking, and most importantly, sound fabulous. 

You can trust Guitar World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing guitar products so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month**

Join now for unlimited access

US pricing $3.99 per month or $39.00 per year

UK pricing £2.99 per month or £29.00 per year 

Europe pricing €3.49 per month or €34.00 per year

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Prices from £2.99/$3.99/€3.49

Daryl Robertson
Senior Deals Writer

As a Senior Deals Writer at Guitar World, I help create and maintain the site's 200+ buyer's guides, scour the internet for the best possible deals on a range of guitar products, and spend a lot of time getting hands-on with the latest guitars, amps, pedals, and more. My gear reviews have also been featured in many prominent publications, including Total Guitar and Future Music magazines and

During my career, I have been lucky enough to talk to many of my musical heroes, having interviewed members of Sum 41, Foo Fighters, Slash featuring Myles Kennedy & the Conspirators, Creeper, Thrice and more.

In a past life, I worked in music retail. For a little under a decade, I advised everyone from absolute beginners to seasoned pros on the right gear for their needs. 

I also have a passion for live sound. I'm a fully qualified sound engineer who holds a first-class Bachelor's degree in Creative Sound Production from the University of Abertay and I have plenty of experience working in various venues around Scotland.