Today I woke up and suddenly one thing came to my mind, Why Acoustic Guitars are so Expensive? Is there anything like cheap vs expensive acoustic guitar?
So, just like anybody else I go to google and start researching about it.
Here I am providing my opinion about the factors that make acoustic guitars expensive basically the comparison of Cheap and Expensive Acoustic Guitar.
So, let’s dive right into it:
Why Branded Acoustic Guitars are Expensive?
Yes, they are. Branded expensive guitars are made with more excellent and high-quality parts, better development, and progressively skilled guitar masters. These guitars are generally hand-tested before they handover to you. On the other side, cheap guitars are mass-produced in factories, ordinarily with incompetent workers, and settle for low-quality control standards with cheaper material in order to reduce the overall cost.
There are mainly three factors that increase the price of an expensive acoustic guitar.
How the guitar is made, the cost of labor, quality of material used to make that guitar, a brand of guitar, and the country in which that guitar is made.
we’re going to talk about each factor in more detail further in this post.
Cost of labor in production, basically How the guitar is made?
In old times, a piece of the guitar takes around 100 to 200 hours (depending upon the model and design on guitar).
That’s a lot of time right?
But as technology evolve there are some CNC manufacturing came forward and transform the whole budget industry particularly in the case of guitars here.
Nowadays, almost everything is done by machines, however, there are some fine works and tasks that machines can’t do and needed a skilled person.
For example, If you know, Top bracing a very important part in guitar and makes a guitar sounds great.
These braces are glued on the top to create the right tension and flexibility. Unfortunately, as wood is an organic material, it’s every single piece is a little bit different from the previous piece.
Thus they can not just set one uniform shape and thickness to get the same appropriate result every time.
here they need a skilled guitar master who manually goes through this time-consuming work and makes it perfect.
if guitar brands want to cut down their costs further, then they need to reduce the skill level of their workers which will directly affect the sound quality of a guitar.
Cost of guitar is also increases due to the quality material used during the building process. let’s take a look it:
Quality of Material used for Guitar
Obivously, the costs of material used to build the instrument is one of the major contributing factor in the overall cost of an instrument.
Different types of wood are different from each other in many factors like how easy to obtain it, from where it comes, and whether it is protected for any environmental reasons.
For Ex. Rosewood from Brazil is commonly used in expensive classical acoustic guitars. this material is hard to obtain and also expensive to buy. Also, they need to do some paperwork before purchase. you can read about it here.
This is also valid in case of material used for strings and fret-board.
The location where Guitar is made and Branding
The cost of the guitar differs dramatically in the country of origin. Guitars manufactured in Europe, the US, and Japan as normally very expensive if we compared to the guitars manufactured in countries like China, Korea, and Indonesia.
However, great guitars can be built with the right workflow and skilled laborers in any country. So, we can not just say that guitar made in China is not so good as compare to the one in the US.
Now, let’s discuss something about what’s do I mean by an expensive guitar?
Expensiveness of guitar is depend on the skill-set of the player.
An acoustic guitar is a tone-wood musical instrument that ranges from $50 to almost $10,000 if you go for custom made. (these are not stoned prices, this is just I feel from my experience)
When any beginners is looking for a guitar (mostly from $50 to $300), they possibly brought low commitment level to towards learning. who falls into this category: a child, an adult with limited time to invest.
When an intermediet player is go for buying guitar they put their price range from $300 to around $750. mostly the players who start taking some guitar lessons and moving towards proficiency.
Even one step further, the professional pro guitar players buy even more expensive guitars.
This bring one more question to my mind:
Is an expensive acoustic guitar worth it?
Let’s go through some pointers first and try to figure out answer to this question:
Do Expensive Guitars Sound Better?
My answer is Big YES. expensive guitars will always be of better quality if we compare it with cheap quality acoustic guitars.
When it comes to expensive guitars, there are some reasons that these guitars are expensive, right?
The material used for guitar, every small detail, every fine adjustment increases the sound quality of the guitar.
So, most probably the next question arrived in your mind is:
Do cheap acoustic guitars really sound bad?
Ok, first of all I want to burst some misconceptions here about the word “cheap”.
There is a difference between something that has low cost and something that has a low value. You need to keep that in mind that, cheap guitars do not means low valued, poorly manufactured, and worthless guitars.
As I explain in the previous section of this article, the expensiveness of guitar depends on the skill set of guitarists.
A proffesional pro guitar player may think a $300 guitar as a cheap but the same guitar is expensive or valuable for a beginner who is starting his/her journey.
I know, low-value guitars can not produce a quality sound as by an expensive acoustic guitar. but, if you’re a beginner most of the time you can’t even find the difference.
Do you want to know why, Let see:
What is the difference between cheap and expensive acoustic guitars?
In this section, we’ll talk about the key differences basically, cheap vs expensive acoustic guitar comparison. I try to breakdown every factor which came across while researching about this.
As I already told you, guitars manufactured in America or Europian countries are normally expensive.
this is because the cost of the skilled laborers in these countries is much higher as compared to Asian countries like China, Korea, and Indonesia.
But along with the cost, they also give you fine details and attention on every little thing.
But, this does not mean that Issues will not happen with higher-end guitars. it does. but it’s not that common because such guitars are usually hand-tested by professional guitar masters before they handover to you.
2. Hardware Used
Expensive guitars are made from high quality and long-lasting hardware. while at the same time, inexpensive guitar brands usually tend to cut costs by using cheaper material.
But you know what, most of the peoples can’t even find the difference when the guitars are new. but overtime sound quality of cheaper guitars decreases.
3. Finishing or Aesthetic
Look, we all know:
When we brought a new guitar, the feel it gives to us which drives us to play it more and more.
Expensive guitars have very well finished with no blemishes. this is a portion where many big guitar brands pay more attention.
While cheap guitars looks great at first glance but has some inperfections.
There are some brands who reserve their best-looking wood for their expensive guitars and used general wood for cheap.
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Final Thoughts on expensive acoustic guitar:
According to me, for most of the people’s expensive guitars not worth an extra buck unless you’re a professional guitar player.
If you’re a beginner who is just starting his/her music journey or even an intermediate guitar player then you can go for inexpensive guitars without any second thought or any doubt.
You can invest the money you saved here buying recording equipment and sound editing software.
I hope I clear my point of view on this topic. So, whenever you’ll buy a new guitar make sure you’ll not go into the fuss about the branding and choose a perfect guitar according to your budget.