Best Blues Acoustic Guitars of 2020 – Complete Review

Blues music is intended to be felt where it touches the spirit and simply, the best guitar for blues is easily the acoustic guitar. The issue is that there are so many options to choose from and it can be overwhelming. 

The model that is right for you may depend on a lot of things, everything from the type of blues to your stature.

Hopefully, our comprehensive list of the best blues acoustic guitars below, as well as the rest of the information, will be able to help you make your decision easier.

Comparison Chart of the Best Acoustic Guitars for Blues

PRODUCTDETAILS
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Gretsch G9200 Roundneck Boxcar

  • Best blues acoustic guitar overall
  • Built with an internal sound well bracing for improved volume
  • Handspun aluminum Gretsch diaphragm for improved resonance
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Yamaha FS850

  • Design with a slimmer body for better playability
  • Crafted with an all-mahogany body for rich mid-tones and a quick response
  • Built with a newly redesigned scalloped bracing that helps with improved volume
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Ibanez AW54OPN Artwood

  • Best for the Money
  • Fitted with patented bridge pins for improved security
  • Design with a dreadnought shape for that traditional look
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Takamine GN71CE-NAT

  • Best Acoustic Guitar for Blues Fingerpicking
  • Neck constructed of mahogany that is slim for better playability
  • Fitted with a patent preamp system that helps improve sound-shaping capabilities
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Taylor 214ce

  • Crafted with an x-bracing for improved volume capability
  • Designed with a Venetian cutaway build for improved playability
  • Electronics are built-in behind the saddle and offers more dynamic properties
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Perks of Getting a New Acoustic Guitar to Play Blues

Having the best acoustic guitar for blues means you’ll have the ability to get the tone and range you need to impart the emotions you are looking for. By purchasing the right acoustic guitar, you will be able to take advantage of the benefits it offers this genre of music.

Here are some of those perks: 

  • Acoustics offers a wide dynamic range, warm tones, and brilliant sound perfect for blues.
  • These guitars come in various sizes and styles to suit your financial limit and level of experience. 
  • An acoustic blues guitar is more affordable than an electric guitar. You don’t have to purchase an amp or any other kit. 
  • On the off chance that you figure out how to play on a steel-string guitar, you’ll find it easier to play an electric when you return to it.
  • Figuring out how to play the blues on an acoustic guitar builds up callouses on your fingers. The tougher your fingers are, the easier it will be to play complex blues melodies. 
  • Acoustic guitars are crafted to be sturdy and tough. 
  • These guitars produce a pleasant tone that is delicate enough for the blues.

What Makes an Acoustic Guitar Great for Blues?

Blues has never died, just simply evolved with time. Thus, the requirement for a decent acoustic guitar for blues is still a necessity. This is why picking the right guitar for blues is so hard. But we have taken the time to craft a buyer’s guide that you can use to help you with this task. 

Sound

Some blues are shrill, some are low-pitched and brilliant, and others dull and miserable. The sound differences between the different styles are why choosing a guitar that will work with your chosen sound profile is crucial. 

Tone

A guitar with great sound and tone can deliver the heartfelt melodies that come with blues. This is why going with an acoustic with premium tonewood is a great idea. It will deliver rich, full music instead of the empty twangy sound of an electric. 

Volume

Since blues is music with in-your-face pounding rhythms and melodies, a great blues acoustic guitar ought to have the option to scale the volume as required.

Action

The closer the strings and frets are, the clearer each note will be. This is the reason guitars with a low action are a vital component of a decent blues acoustic guitar.

Quick Take: 
Top 3 Picks

Here are the best acoustic guitars for blues:

  1. Gretsch G9200 Roundneck Boxcar
  2. Yamaha FS850
  3. Ibanez AW54OPN Artwood 

Review of the Best Acoustic Guitars for Blues

With all that knowledge laid out, you should be ready to dive into our comprehensive list of guitars below.

Gretsch G9200 Roundneck Boxcar, Natural

PROS

  • Fitted with a Spider bridge for improved sustain
  • Less metallic and ore woody sound perfect for blues
  • Warm, rich sound is produced due to the 12 fret neck
  • Great volume and tone created from the aluminum resonator
  • Rich resonance from the inclusion of laminated back, top, and sides
  • Guitar has a nice feel from the wood grain and is aesthetically nice

CONS

  • Not fitted with any inner electronics
  • Lack of strap buttons affects playability
  • Versatility of sound capability is limited

What Recent Buyers Report

This is a sharp-looking guitar, but the beauty goes more than skin deep. With a design that utilizes a short scale, it is a model that offers optimized playability, as well as delivers a killer sound. Even with the difficulty in playing the final frets, this guitar is a well-regarded instrument.

Why it Stands Out to Us

It is all about the resonator. Not only does it make this guitar look amazing, but it brings with it a rich resonance. This resonance gives this guitar a superior sound and versatility of sound that far surpasses most of its competitors.

Who Will Use This Most

This guitar was built for slide players. Its strings and action are perfect for this and less friendly to those that use a fingerpicking method. So, if you are looking to get into Mississippi Delta Blues, this is the perfect guitar for you.

Bottom Line

This is just an all-around fantastic acoustic guitar or any blues player. This design offers a rich, resonant tone that will have fans lost in your world of music. That, combined with the high-grade materials, simply creates one of the best guitars available today.

Runner-up:
 Yamaha FS850

Yamaha FS850 Small Body Acoustic Guitar, Mahogany, with Yamaha Concert-Size Guitar Case and Accessory Pack

PROS

  • Lightweight and compact, which enhances its portability
  • Design and finish make this a comfortable guitar to play
  • Rich, warm, authentic tones are produced from this guitar
  • Crafted with precision and premium materials for improved durability
  • Price versus value is outstanding when compared to some of the competition

CONS

  • Lack of button strap on the neck
  • The pickguard is not very pleasing to the eye
  • Some may find it’s too small for them to play comfortably

What Recent Buyers Report

A great blues guitar will have a resonance that carries throughout the room and into your soul, and this guitar from Yamaha has that. It is also lightweight and easy to hold, increasing the playability. Aesthetically, it is stunning all except the pickguard laminate.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The bracing of this guitar, though unseen to the eye, is the thing that stands out most to us. The newly revised design helps improve the volume capability as well as the resonance we have been talking about.

Who Will Use This Most

This is a great option for any number of blues players. But the ones that will benefit the most are those that travel from gig to gig. Its lightweight, compact design makes it the perfect traveling blues guitar. Smaller framed or youth players would do well with it, as well.

Bottom Line

Everything about this guitar screams blues. From the lightweight design crafted in rich mahogany to the internal bracing, this Yamaha is simply one of the best options out there. It is a well-crafted durable instrument that can be used to get your voice heard.

Best for the Money:
Ibanez AW54OPN Artwood

Ibanez AW54OPN Artwood Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar - Open Pore Natural

PROS

  • Price versus value for this guitar is outstanding
  • Action is almost perfect straight out of the box
  • Use of high-grade materials for enhanced sound quality 
  • Tonal quality of this guitar is consistent no matter the situation
  • Premium tonewood used offers the guitarist a warm, rich sound quality
  • Design and materials used in the construction give this guitar a good feel

CONS

  • Issues with tuning peg's durability
  • The fretboard could be better crafted
  • The weight of the guitar does detract from the playability for some

What Recent Buyers Report

This budget-friendly guitar has so much going for it, but chief among that laundry list is an almost perfect intonation straight from the packaging. Though it is a bit on the heavier side, this model is highly recommended because it offers such amazing sound and tone.

Why it Stands Out to Us

When you look at all the advantages and features designed into this acoustic guitar, you would imagine a pretty hefty price tag would come along with them. This is what is really great about this model. You get all of that high-end quality for an extremely budget-friendly price.

Who Will Use This Most

The weight may be a problem for a blues player that is running from venue to venue, hauling all their gear as they go, but not for the studio player. The weight isn’t even a factor when recording, but the superb sound quality is.

Bottom Line

Ibanez is well known for high-quality instruments and this model furthers that reputation. Playing the blues doesn’t have to be expensive at the expense of quality. With the Ibanez AW540PN, you get a guitar that brings impressive sound and durability.

Best Acoustic Guitar for Blues Fingerpicking:
Takamine GN71CE-NAT

Takamine GN71CE-NAT Nex Cutaway Acoustic-Electric Guitar, Natural

PROS

  • Price is excellent for the value afforded the guitarist
  • Well-made neck that enhances the overall playability
  • Built-in preamp helps elevate the versatility of sound capabilities
  • The guitar comes with the highly regarded reputation of Takamine
  • Constructed with premium materials that lend it a great feeling to hold
  • Combination of spruce and rosewood body that brings with it a rich, detailed sound

CONS

  • Sound quality tends to be slightly flat
  • Price seems to be a little expensive for some
  • The upper strings seem to have more power than the lower strings

What Recent Buyers Report

The playability of this guitar is one of the best things about the model. Its neck is a smaller and thinner build, which helps with fast play. It is created with high-grade tonewoods that serve to create a superior sound quality. Though certain tones do seem to be a little flat, on the whole, this is a great option for any player.

Why it Stands Out to Us

When you look at this guitar, there are a lot of features worthy of being discussed. However, the one that made the biggest impression on us are the high-quality preamps. The preamps give the blues guitarist a high level of sound-shaping capability, which is perfect for blues.

Who Will Use This Most

This guitar's fast neck and easy action are perfect for fingerpicking, which means those blues players that are drawn to the Piedmont-style are well suited to choose this guitar. The smaller neck also suits smaller-handed players so younger players or even female blues guitarists could really use this guitar to its fullest.

Bottom Line

This guitar is easily one of the best, and if you are a finger picker, it is definitely the best for you. Designed with a neck that optimizes playability and resonance lends rich tone to the sound of this guitar and is impressive.

Editor’s Pick:
Taylor 214ce

Taylor 214ce Deluxe Grand Auditorium Cutaway Acoustic-Electric Guitar Tobacco Sunburst

PROS

  • Price versus value is an amazing deal
  • Design of the model helps with overall playability
  • Materials used in the construction enhance the durability 
  • Crafted with high-quality tonewoods for elevated sound quality
  • Tuning pegs are high grade and allow for extended play with no need to tune

CONS

  • Action will need to be adjusted before use
  • Acoustic sound is overpowered by the electric sound
  • Rosewood is layered and not laminated, which detracts from durability

What Recent Buyers Report

If you want a guitar that brings with it a deep rich tonal quality and easy playability, then this is a great choice for you. There are some instances of string buzz, but these can be adjusted away and then all you will be left with is one of the best guitars you will ever play.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The electronics are built into a unique location, which optimizes the sound capture capability, and that is something that sets this guitar apart. That, coupled with the design, makes this an excellent choice for any blues guitarist looking for a new sound.

Who Will Use This Most

The electric sound tinges the natural acoustic and slightly overpowers it a bit. That could be a bad thing for a traditional player but great for one who plays modern blues or even southern blues. The construction also lends itself to ease of travel, which makes it great for gigging professionals.

Bottom Line

This guitar is the perfect culmination of everything you want in a quality blues acoustic guitar. It is well designed for ease of play. Plus, it is designed with high-quality materials, including electronics that elevate the sound quality. That is why it is by far, our top pick.

Cautious Considerations to Keep in Mind

When you are investing is such an important piece of musical equipment, you will want to be aware of things that could taint the quality of the option you choose. Some considerations need to be kept in mind so you can tread cautiously when making your final decision.

Budget

Guitars for blues should be of high caliber. Quick-paced music has a critical requirement for solid strings and body. These prerequisites make blues acoustic guitars fairly costly. Along these lines, think about your spending limit while getting one. 

Neck & Body

An acoustic guitar with a thick neck and thin body has high inflection. Such guitars can control the pitch and produce a roaring sound that is extraordinary and boisterous. This is important when playing any style of blues.

Steel Strings

Steel strings can deliver sharp and brilliant sounds on higher notes. The more slender they are, the keener the sound is. In this way, acoustic guitars with slim steel strings are ideal for blues.

Tonewood

The bass reaction must be excessively speedy in case you’re playing blues. Tonewood quality chooses how brisk the reaction is.

Conclusion

While there are plenty of alternatives available, each model and brand we have included here merits your time. Regardless of whether you’re simply beginning, are energetic about playing guitar, or searching for something to add to your collection, the guitars in this guide will sound astonishing as you lament on the woes of the world.