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Best cheap electric guitars 2022: 10 epic budget electrics: Best acoustic guitar under 400

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The budget guitar category has to be the most fiercely competitive, with more options than ever before vying for your hard-earned cash. Nowadays, as this guide to the Best acoustic guitar under 400 proves, you don’t need to spend a fortune to get a great instrument.

We have high-quality options in every style imaginable, from Yamaha, Epiphone, Squire, Gretsch, Ibanez and more. So, whether you’re looking for a budget-friendly Stratocaster, an inexpensive hollow body, or an Best acoustic guitar under 400, you’ll find it here.

Best Cheap Electric Guitar

These cheap electric guitars used to be reserved for new players searching for a beginner-friendly option, but with massive strides forward in quality control and trickle-down technology, they can now be a viable option for intermediate players looking to upgrade their first guitar or even pro players seeking a backup six-string.

These guitars may not have all the bells and whistles of the high-end six-strings on the market, but they aren’t meant to compete with such luxury instruments. Instead, the purpose of these guitars is to provide fantastic playability and great looks, all for a song.

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In this buying guide, we’ve outlined our choices for the Best acoustic guitar under 400 available for you to order right now, and we’ve also included some helpful buying advice at the bottom of this page to help you make your decision.

Looking for a great deal on a cheap electric guitar? Keep it locked to our Black Friday guitar deals page for all the latest savings and offers. For even more music-making discounts, explore our Black Friday music deals hub. Best cheap electric guitars: Our top picks

As we said before, the budget electric guitar bracket is more saturated than ever, making it very difficult to know where to begin. For absolute beginners or the player looking for a budget S-type guitar, the Yamaha Pacifica 112V is the perfect starting point. Robust build quality, elegant looks, and a surprisingly good tone for the price – what’s not to love? 

Perhaps versatility is what you’re looking for? Well, in that case, you can’t go wrong with the PRS SE Standard 24. This Swiss Army Knife of an instrument can produce almost any tone you can think of at a seriously low price – all while managing to retain the high-quality PRS are known for. 

Today’s top deals on the best cheap electric guitars Best cheap electric guitars: Product guide

The best cheap electric guitar with long-lasting appeal Specifications

Body: Alder

Best acoustic guitar under 400

Neck: Maple

Scale: 25.5″

Fingerboard: Rosewood

Frets: 22

Pickups: Alnico V bridge humbucker 2x Alnico V single coils

Controls: Volume, tone (with push-pull coil-split), 5-way selector switch

Hardware: Vintage-style vibrato with block saddle

Left-handed: Yes (Pacifica 112J)

Finish: Natural Satin, Old Violin Sunburst, Raspberry Red, Sonic Blue, Black, Silver MetallicReasons to buy +

Ideal for beginners+

Great design+

Impressive build qualityReasons to avoid –

Vibrato could be better

The Yamaha Pacifica has long proved a benchmark for quality and specification, and the 112V remains one of the Best acoustic guitar under 400 for beginners. The 112 is far from fancy and simply concentrates on the bare necessities. Yet the construction is of excellent quality. Trust us, if looked after well, this will be a guitar for life. 

By design it’s an altogether more modern, brighter and lighter take on a hot-rod Strat. But when we say brighter that doesn’t mean overly shrill. In fact the bridge humbucker will surprise some, it’s beefy without being too mid-range heavy and although the coil-split proves a little bland played clean, with a distortion boost it’s a pretty useful gnarly and wiry rhythm voice. 

It’s good to have the choice too when mixed with the middle pickup – switching between the full and split coil here is subtle but, especially with cleaner ‘class A’ amp voicings, there’s enough character difference to be useable. 

The solo single-coils impress – plenty of percussion and with a little mid-range beef added from the amp these get you to the correct Texas tone land. Neck and middle combined produces a fine modern Strat-like mix – the added brightness will cut through a multi-FX patch nicely.

Read our full Yamaha Pacifica 112V review

Best cheap electric guitar for a real Gretsch vibe Specifications of Best acoustic guitar under 400
Best acoustic guitar under 400

Body: Laminated maple, semi-hollow

Neck: NATO

Scale: 24.75″

Fingerboard: Rosewood

Frets: 22

Pickups: 2x Broad’ Tron humbuckers

Controls: Neck volume, bridge volume, tone, 3-way pickup selector

Hardware: Adjust o-Matich bridge, ‘V’ stop tail tailpiece

Left-handed: Yes: G2622LH

Finish: Walnut Stain, Black Reasons to buy +

Build-to-price ratio is very high+

Broad sonic potential Reasons to avoid –

Semi-hollow guitars aren’t for everyone

The Streamliner concept is simple: to create more affordable Gretsch guitars without losing their specific DNA. Two new Broad’Tron humbuckers are controlled in classic Gretsch style by a three-way toggle selector switch on the bass side shoulder, a master volume on the treble side horn, and then a trio of controls by the treble-side f-hole for individual-pickup volume and master tone. 

The G2622‘s construction gives a different response and resonance to other new releases from Gretsch and, with these pickups, moves further from the Gretsch sound. And while its construction gives it a more solid, or at least ES-335, character, it’s a little more airy and less punchy with a softer, squashier tonality. 

The beefier pickups certainly don’t nail a classic Gretsch tonality – although if that’s what you want, the full-size pickups are easy to replace – but they do broaden the sonic potential, especially for more gained styles, while staying close to the classic iconography. If you want a great-value semi-hollow, this is among the best electric guitars.

Read our full Gretsch G2622 Streamliner review

The most versatile cheap electric guitar available at this price Specifications of Best acoustic guitar under 400

Body: Mahogany

Neck: Maple

Scale: 25″

Fingerboard: Rosewood

Frets: 24

Pickups: 2x 85/15 ‘S’

Controls: Volume, tone (with push-pull coil-split), 3-way selector

Hardware: PRS vibrato, PRS tuners

Left-handed: No

Finish: Vintage Cherry, Tobacco Sunburst, Translucent Blue Reasons to buy +

Wide range of tones+

Comfortable playing experience Reasons to avoid –

Slightly loose vibrato arm fitting-

Not the smoothest vibrato

You might expect PRS’s budget take on its venerable Custom 24 to pale in comparison to the real deal, but that certainly isn’t the case. Considering the price, this is one impressively put-together instrument; we scoured our review model for signs of the guitar’s price tag, and all we could find was a slightly loose vibrato arm fitting – a minor point. 

Like the traditional USA-made Custom 24 design, there’s no scratch plate, so the SE Standard 24’s electronics are installed in a cavity. The non-locking SE-level tuners are smooth-handling, and visually, you’d struggle to distinguish the vibrato from top-end PRS guitars. 

The SE Standard isn’t quite as refined or sleek a playing experience as PRS’s S2 and above models. Courtesy of the chunkier Wide Thin profile, higher action and slightly creaky vibrato response, but a more player-personal setup helps to rectify that.

The tones are here, though: searing solos, toasty rhythms and coil-split quack are all within reach. At this price, it’s an impressive performance from one of the top electric guitar brands in the market.

Read our full PRS SE Standard 24 review

Best acoustic guitar under 400

4. Epiphone SG Special P-90

A P-90 powerhouse Specifications

Body: Mahogany

Neck: Mahogany

Scale: 24.75″

Fingerboard: Rosewood

Frets: 22

Pickups: 2 x P90

Controls: Neck volume, bridge volume, neck tone, bridge tone, 3-way pickup selector

Hardware: Lightning bolt wrap around bridge, Epiphone Deluxe tuners

Left-handed: No

Finish: Sparkling Burgundy, Faded Pelham Blue Reasons to buy +

Stunning finish

Wrap around bridge not for everyone 

Many players are drawn in by the devilishly good looks of the SG. But its fierce tonal bark and lightning-fast neck is what keeps them coming back for more. Now, we’ve opted to include the Epiphone SG Special on this best cheap electric guitar list. As we can’t get enough of the warm tone associated with the P-90

This guitar is directly inspired by the Gibson of the same name and offers players everything they’ve come to expect from the SG Special at a more affordable price.  

So if you are looking for a classic axe capable of covering everything from blues to indie, jazz to hard rock. This is the guitar for you. 

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