The demand for a best intermediate classical guitar is always high. This musical instrument originated in Spain and therefore it is also known as Spanish guitar. Another popular name for this type of guitar is nylon string guitar because it is made of nylon strings. There is a good reason why classical guitars are in such high demand. They have a number of advantages over other types of guitar.
Classical guitars have a smaller body as well as mellower tone than steel stringed guitars. There are lots of different choices when buying a classical guitar. The price of a classical guitar can range from as low as $100 to as high as $1500. They all have different sound quality, style, body quality as well as a number of other things.
Not to be confused with such nylon strung “folk” guitar, the classical guitar, although sharing the same type of strings, offers the musician a far more sophisticated instrument, in build tone and quality. The beautiful classical guitar has a wide-ranging repertoire that in the right hands can evoke each and every changing emotion, from romantic and enchanting moods to the dramatic and dynamic tone. This review will explain to you everything that you need to know about handmade classical guitars.
All this can be overwhelming for someone looking to buy a classical guitar for the first time. What to look for in a classical guitar? What price is best? How to find the best classical intermediate guitars for you? All of these and many other questions are answered in this short but extremely detailed article. This is the perfect guide for someone looking to buy a classical guitar for the first time.
Best Intermediate Classical Guitar
1. Yamaha NTX700 Classical Electro Acoustic Guitar
If you’re looking for a high-end classical guitar suitable for professional use but one that won’t break the bank either, the Yamaha NTX700 Classical Electro Acoustic Guitar is a great option and one of the best classical guitars available today.
You have a Solid Spruce top, Nato back and sides which are incredible tonewoods found on the pro-level guitars of the world. These tonewoods provide a lush, dynamic sound that really brings out the best in each note and offers superior resonance, especially when combined with the rosewood fingerboard and bridge.
The A.R.T. 2 way Pickup System (System61) gives you an accurate an articulate representation of your performance and reproduces the subtleties of your playing when plugged into an amplifier. If you’re an absolute professional, the Yamaha NTX1200R Classical Electro Acoustic Guitar is perfect.
2. Alvarez CC7HCEAR Cadiz Concert Classical Hybrid Cutaway Natural Gloss
The Alvarez CC7HCEAR Cadiz Concert is a concert-style classical hybrid guitar designed for those who demand more from their acoustic guitars and one of the best classical guitars for professional artists thanks to its focus on projected sound and playability.
The lower bout cutaway design with comfortable armrest has been specifically introduced to the guitar to encourage a more enjoyable playing experience overall – ideal for the performing musicians out there. The Solid A+ Sitka Spruce top, and Dark Walnut back and sides offer the perfect mix of snappy articulation for single lines and lead notes and the warmth required for chords.
The custom bracing system has been hand crafted by the Alvarez luthiers and features 4 varying widths laid out in reference to Jose Ramirez III’s asymmetric architecture designs and produces a beautiful voice with clean trebles and strong bass notes. When partnered with the LR Baggs Element pickup and StagePro EQ preamp system – this guitar is a powerhouse of performance ability.
3. Cordoba GK Studio Limited w/ Electronics Natural
The Cordoba GK Studio is one of the best classical guitars for professional level players and those who don’t want to have to upgrade further down the line. This beautifully crafted guitar has been designed to provide a lifetime of enjoyment and high levels of playability thanks to a great combination of superb tone woods and expert craftsmanship.
A slightly thinner body depth, neck and nut width than a traditional classical guitar makes this a lot faster and easier to play – ideal for gigging musicians. The cutaway design allows superb access to the upper frets and the combination of solid European spruce top with Cypress back and sides and a high-grade Fishman Presys Blend pickup system means your guitar sounds great whether you’re playing acoustically or hooked up to an amplifier.
As previously mentioned, the GK studio has been designed to be a reliable workhorse and as such features a two-way truss rod built into the neck for intonation stability as well as hard wearing rosewood fingerboard and bridge. This is one of the best nylon string guitars you could ever hope to play.
4. Admira A10 Classical Guitar
Next up we have the Admira A10 Classical Guitar – a handcrafted, traditional style classical guitar designed to provide players with incredible tone and expression via quality tonewoods and traditional crafting methods.
This full-size nylon string guitar utilises a Cedar top for articulation and snap which really brings out your lead lines and scales whilst the depth and warmth you need for chords and resonance is handled by the Indian Rosewood back and sides.
Again, the traditional crafting methods really shine thanks to the neck construction. This is potentially one of the most highly developed neck joints found in classical guitars, offering superior resonance to that of a standard glued neck, the traditional Spanish heel joint connects the neck to the body in such a way that the notes resonate completely through the entire guitar. When combined with a neck and head block carved from one continuous piece of mahogany, this guitar really sings.
Professional quality appointments such as the six gold machine heads provide precise and reliable tuning as well as a nice looking feature.
5. Alvarez AC65 Classical Natural Gloss
The Alvarez AC65 Classical in Natural Gloss hails from the coveted range of Alvarez guitars – a world renowned maker of acoustic and classical guitars based in America. In addition to their high-end professional offerings the team at Alvarez craft superb entry-level classical guitars that provide stunning playability and sound quality for the price.
Now at just over £300, you might be thinking “this is supposed to be a beginner classical guitar”. But trust us when we say the extra investment is totally worth it as the superior tonewoods really make your music stand out. The combination of Solid Western Red Cedar top and Mahogany back and sides brings a vibrance and rich tonality that is surprising given the modest price tag.
We feel the Alvarez AC65 Classical guitar is one of the best classical guitars for beginners and intermediates alike thanks to the traditional Spanish fan system bracing. This bracing system in conjunction with the tonewoods ensures the learning/playing experience is more enjoyable as each note you play rings out true and clear – something which can make all the difference when deciding to continue playing guitar.
High quality, affordable and a great sound – a beautiful acoustic guitar for all to enjoy.
6. Admira 1908 Malaga
When you need a pro-level, or at the very least and intermediate level classical guitar but at a budget friendly price, the Admira 1908 Malaga is a great choice. We think this is one of the best classical guitars available today for those who want to be able to enjoy a professional sound and an enjoyable playing experience without breaking the bank as the 1908 Malaga makes a great beginner guitar but packs in a quality not often seen in guitars of this price range.
This full-size classical nylon string guitar features a solid cedar top and high quality Sapelli back and sides – a tonewood often found in guitars many times the price. The comfortable Samanguilla neck, and Mongoy fingerboard provide an enjoyable playing experience, which is especially useful when you’re a new learner. Experienced players will also enjoy the superb resonance and the perfectly constructed neck which is ideal for chords and single note runs. One of the best cheap classical guitars available, that certainly doesn’t suck!
7. Admira ADM500 Sara EC Electro-Acoustic Classical Guitar
When you need the option of plugging in to an amplifier or PA system for gigs, the Admira ADM500 Sara EC Electro-Acoustic Classical Guitar is a fantastic option, as it’s packed with a great sounding pickup which effortlessly reflects the quality of the tonewoods of the guitar for a pro-level sound.
At under £150, you’re not going to break the bank with this model, but it’s tonewoods and quality construction still sets it apart from guitars twice the price – just one of the reasons we think this is one of the best classical guitars on the market today.
You have a solid Canadian Spruce top with Walnut back and sides to handle all the tonal qualities providing a deep, rich sound with added resonance whilst the 4 band EQ preamp built in with an extra under saddle piezo pickup handles the electric side of things. This is ideal for beginner or intermediate players who want to start gigging and performing as soon as possible.
8. Yamaha C40 II Classical Guitar
Last but by no means least we have an industry standard and one of the best classical guitars for beginners – the Yamaha C40 II Classical Guitar. This Yamaha Acoustic guitar is often used for beginners learning to play acoustic for the first time as it 1.) sounds great and 2.) actually feels nice when you’re playing it. These two factors are very important when you’re just starting out as the guitar needs to sound good or you’ll get frustrated, and needs to feel nice otherwise you might become disheartened with trying to learn how to place your hand on the frets.
The combination of a Spruce tops, rich Meranti backs and sides and a real Rosewood fingerboard and bridge ensure the guitar is loaded full of quality tonal properties ready to help you achieve your guitar playing goals and sound great while doing so.
Guitar Buying Guide: What To Know Before You Buy an Acoustic or Electric Guitar
Understanding how to select the right guitar type that’s best for your learning style and playing needs can help make the guitar buying process much easier. So, before we can officially salute those who are about to rock, we (along with our friends at Beginner Guitar HQ) have a few tips and recommendations to help you get started:
- Know the term “tonewood.”
- Know which guitar style is best for beginners.
- Know the types of electric guitars.
- Know budget-friendly accessories for your guitar.
1. Yes, “Tonewood” Is A Thing!
Wood is favored for guitar crafting. A guitar needs to hold itself together as well as produce a great tone (aka, “tonewood”). Tonewood has the capacity to effectively produce brighter, sharper sounds as well as warmer, deeper overtones.
However, not all types of wood are suitable for crafting guitar parts, which is why choosing the right type of tonewood is important! Below are three common wood types used in crafting:
- Primarily used for the neck and fretboard
- Produces an extremely clear sound
- Maple resonates well and produces defined tones
- Strong, but malleable
- Produces a full, yet twangy sound
- Many favor the red hue of the wood
- Sustains chords and notes
- Strongest and most economical wood type
Each wood is used for its particular characteristics, so research the different woods suitable for the specific style of guitar you are interested in playing.
2. Beginner? Learn On The Acoustic First.
For a beginner guitarist, we recommend test-driving an acoustic. Acoustic guitars are one of the most beginner-friendly musical instruments and can be learned quickly. Starting on the acoustic is more meant for learning chords and finger placement, as well as understanding how to amplify your sounds or quiet your sounds. Plus, many are low in cost, so they won’t break your budget!
Advantages Of An Acoustic
- Doesn’t need electricity to play
- Doesn’t need a lot of equipment other than a guitar pick
- Usually, strings won’t hurt the fingers as much compared to the electric guitar strings
Never underestimate the wisdom of veteran guitarists when it comes to brand and style advice! Although many musicians will have their preferences, we recommend Washburn’s Apprentice Series as being a great starter for beginner musicians:
- Best to use when learning finger placement and sound desired
- Most affordable
- Premium spruce top
- Mahogany back and sides for a full rich tone
Washburn guitars have plenty of series and styles to choose from. Do some research to find the best acoustic for your learning style!
3. Know Your Electric Guitars.
When choosing an electric guitar, decisions will rely more on the components and the quality of the craftsmanship rather than the type of wood used.
An electric guitar relies on the wood simply as a strong base capable of sustaining the tension of the strings, as opposed to an acoustic guitar using the wood to amplify the sound. The three most-common body styles are featured below:
- Most common for rock, pop, and country genres
- Lacks a hollow resonating chamber, which means the sound can be amplified louderCredit: Guitar Center
- Most common for jazz or blues genres, plus rock n’ roll
- Tone is silky smooth and electrified
- Has a large resonating chamberCredit: Guitar Center
- Versatile and can adapt to any genre
- Has a hollow resonating chamber paired with a solid center blockCredit: Guitar Center
A few components often overlooked are the switches, tone knobs and volume knobs just below the strings. Are they easy to reach and control with the hand not picking or strumming?
4. Budget For The Accessories, Too!
Enthusiastic shoppers may forget about the extras needed once the actual guitar is purchased. Our friends at Beginner Guitar HQ list several great products, including amp suggestions and guitar cases, but we’ve chosen a few common accessories below that are budget-friendly for beginners.
They are the tiniest accessory that can often cause the biggest headache for musicians. That’s because you need to find the right material and thickness that can help you strum or pluck without having to use your fingers all the time. If a pick is too flimsy, they can break easily or won’t provide the right sound you are looking for.
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Stands can be made out of different materials, but they should all be durable. The materials can dictate how much they will stand with your instrument and how much they will be able to shield it from danger and the like.
Top Stage Pro
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Storing your instrument in the right temperature is important. If you are not using your instrument, make sure you store it in the right place to avoid such hassle and damage to your instrument in the long run.
When you choose the best guitar strap, the length can vary depending on the desired length or type of guitar that you have, as well as how tall or short you are.
Protec Leather Ends
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You don’t want your guitar to be too far from your body, making it uncomfortable to play. The thickness can also have an impact, as a thickness that is wider can mean more support for your shoulders.
It is always unpleasant to hear an off tune guitar, so you should make it a habit to tune your instrument before every performance or even practice. Tuning your guitar as quickly as possible is important because it will help save up on setup time; too long a setup time will get the audience bored eventually!
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The standard tuning of a guitar is E A D G B E.
Different guitars have different purposes. Consider your choice in strings to meet the criteria that you expect so as not to waste money in the long run. Electric strings run on amplifier power and can produce loud sounds while acoustic strings are more for the quiet practice purposes, small venues and subtle music.
The gauge or thickness can play a role in a string set. Thickness is how much volume or bass you want or how much treble you want for your strings.
D’Addario EXL 110-3D *for electric guitars
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Acoustic guitars normally use nylon or steel strings. Electric guitars use stainless steel or nickel.