All posts by Duke Taber

Top 10 acoustic electric guitars

Top 10 Acoustic Electric Guitars For 2017

In the good ole days before the invention of the piezo electric guitar pickup and acoustic electric guitars, the way you used an acoustic guitar in a live performance was to try to mic it. Soundmen across the planet hated this because the method was prone to feedback and the guitarist had to remain motionless otherwise the sound levels would fluctuate. 

​It was in the 1950's that Gibson first attempted to produce an acoustic electric guitar. However it did not produce a very good acoustic sound. It wasn't until Country Music legend Glenn Campbell asked Ovation Guitars to make him an acoustic electric guitar that the modern version of the acoustic electric guitar was born.

If you plan to do live performances then you will do well with any of these top 10 acoustic electric guitars. 

Top 10 Acoustic Electric Guitar Quick Comparison Chart




Taylor 210e Deluxe - Natural

If you need a great-looking guitar that sounds wonderful plugged in, it's hard to beat the Taylor 210e Deluxe.


Yamaha A-Series AC3R Acoutic-Electric Guitar - 2017 Model, Vintage Natural

Designed to be the ideal performance acoustic guitar, the Yamaha A-Series is crafted from the ground up to be perfectly suited to life on the road.


Martin Road Series DRS1 Dreadnought Acoustic-Electric Guitar Natural

The Martin DRS1 Dreadnought Acoustic-Electric Guitar marks the return of the Road Series, which was introduced in 2001, for working and traveling guitarists on a modest budget.


Taylor GS Mini-E Mahogany Acoustic-Electric Guitar

This premium edition of Taylor’s standard mahogany-top GS Mini comes equipped for live performance with the addition of Taylor’s ES-T pickup, including onboard tone and volume control knobs.


Martin X Series 2015 DX1RAE Dreadnought Acoustic-Electric Guitar Natural

The 6-string Martin DX1RAE acoustic-electric guitar features a D-14 platform, a dreadnought body design producing big, round sound.


Martin X Series 2015 DX1AE Acoustic-Electric Guitar Natural

Whether you're a seasoned professional, or a picker-in-training, the Martin X Series DX1AE has got your musical bases covered, with killer craftsmanship, Fishman electronics, and striking beauty.


Epiphone EJ-200SCE Solid Top Cutaway Acoustic /Electric Guitar, Vintage Sunburst

The Epiphone EJ-200SCE pushes the "King of the Flat Tops," into the future with a spectacular cutaway for total upper fret access plus the eSonic2 preamp system.


Fender Sonoran SCE Acoustic Electric Guitar, Rosewood Fingerboard, Natural (v2)

It's perfect for those who dig vintage styling and seek to ride the wave of Fender's classic Southern California history and vibe.


Yamaha FGX730SC Solid Top Acoustic-Electric Guitar - Rosewood, Natural

The FGX730SC acoustic guitar offers all the great features of the FG730S with an added cutaway body, 1-way piezo/preamp system with 3-band EQ, adjustable midrange frequency control and chromatic built-in tuner.


Ibanez PF Series PF15ECE Dreadnought Cutaway Acoustic-Electric Cutaway Guitar Gloss Black

"The Ibanez PF15ECE Performance Series Acoustic-Electric Cutaway Guitar uses mahogany back and sides to provide rich, warm lows and sweet sustain.


Best Acoustic Electric Guitars Under $1,000.00

Taylor 210e Deluxe

Taylor 210e acoustic electric guitar

The Taylor 210e electric acoustic guitar is one of the premium guitars on the market today. 

​The 210e Deluxe gives you the beautiful look of rosewood, plus the full open sound and balanced tone of a solid spruce top.

What's more, it features Taylor's dreadnought body style, which gives you incredible projection and volume along with Taylor's signature high-end acoustic ring.

Check out this video of the Taylor 210e electric acoustic guitar. The only difference between the one shown in the video and the one featured here is the finish. The one featured here is a natural finish where the one in the video is a sunburst finish.

Yamaha A-Series AC3R

Yahama AC3R acoustic electric guitar

Yamaha is one of my favorite affordable brands of acoustic electric guitars.

I love their natural, dynamic plugged-in tone and stage-ready simplicity from the SRT2 pickups;

Plus they are easy to play out of the box thanks to hand-rolled fingerboard edges.

And of course, Yamaha's legendary road-ready construction, the A-Series is the guitar to take your playing to the next level.

Pro Guitarist Dave Goodman demonstrates the A Series electro-acoustic guitar models from Yamaha. You will find this video very interesting and understand why Yamaha is one of the most popular acoustic electric guitars on the market.

Martin Road Series DRS1

You can never question the quality of a Martin electric acoustic guitar with the top, back and sides crafted of solid sapele and braced for resonance and projection.

The DRS1 neck is constructed with multilaminate Stratabond for extra rigidity and ruggedness, and the bridge and fingerboard are made of Richlite that achieves a similar look to ebony.

This DRS1 comes equipped with the Fishman Sonitone sound reinforcement system giving it the classic Martin sound that we have all come to love and expect.

Once again the guys at Guitar Center have produced a great video about the Martin Road Series DRS1. Eventually we hope to add them to our list of vendors for all our musical instrument reviews. Take a look at the video and check out all that the Martin Road series acoustic electric guitar has to offer.

Taylor GS Mini-E

Between the compact size and full-voiced tone and projection, acoustic electric players at every level love having a Taylor GS Mini-E within arm’s reach.

Wherever you may be — whether on the go or on the couch you will love this guitar.

The hardwood mahogany top yields a meaty, punchy response that lively pickers and strummers will enjoy.

And Taylor's ES-T electronics produces a rich sound few will equal.

Check out this video of the Taylor GS Mini-E. After watching this video you will totally understand why Taylor is one of the most popular acoustic electric guitars and desired by musicians all over the world. The sound produced by a Taylor guitar is like no other.

Martin X Series 2015 DX1RAE

With the bold sound of an Indian rosewood laminate body, the crystal-clarity of a Sitka spruce top, paired with cutting-edge Fishman electronics, the Martin DX1RAE is a steal.

This is one of Martin's best deals ever. The X Series shows Martin's commitment to providing an inexpensive and competitive option to players dedicated to live performance.

​Dressed in a satin finish and featuring chrome tuners, chrome hardware, this guitar has the look and sound of a highly collectible Martin guitar.

As the guys at Musician's Friend say, everyone who is a guitarist wants a Martin Guitar. But until recently they have been priced out of the average player's budget. Not anymore. This sweet guitar is priced in any player's budget. Check out this video on the Martin X Series DX1RAE

Best Acoustic Electric Guitars Under $500.00

Martin X Series 2015 DX1AE

Once again we have a Martin X Series DX1 at a little less expensive price point but still a great guitar for the money.

The difference between the DX1RAE and the DX1AE is that the R stands for Rosewood. The AE in Martin speak means Acoustic Electric.

Whatever the price point you are comfortable with, I do not believe it is possible to go wrong buying a Martin guitar.​

Epiphone EJ-200SCE

The EJ-200 style is simply the world's most famous acoustic guitar, known equally for its majestic look and focused, complex sound.

When the EJ-200 was first introduced, it immediately filled a need for a deeper, more balanced and powerful acoustic instrument that could project over stage and radio.

The J-200 was a radical new design, bigger and bolder than any previous guitar, capable of projecting well beyond that of any other acoustic on the market--a fact that still holds true today with the EJ-200SCE.

Once you watch this video on the Epiphone EJ-200SCE you will be highly impressed by how much guitar you can get for the price. It has such flexibility it makes a great choice for a your first live performance guitar. You can't go wrong with this Epiphone guitar.

Fender Sonoran SCE

If you are looking for that Southern California vibe then you will love the Fender Sonoran SCE.

​It has many premium features including a "tight "dreadnought cutaway body shape, resonant solid spruce top with scalloped X bracing, mahogany back and sides.

It has a vintage C-shaped maple neck with dual-action trussrod and matching painted Stratocaster headstock shape.

It also comes with the Fishman Isys III pickup system for that distinct Fender sound.

Once again the guys at Musician's Friend give a great little demonstration video of the Fender Sonoran SCE acoustic electric guitar. If you are a Fender fan, then you will love this great little guitar with a Stratocaster neck and retro colors.

Yamaha FGX730SC

Since it was introduced in the 1960’s, the Yamaha FG has been recognized as simply the best acoustic guitar in its league.

Acoustically or plugged in, the FGX730SC sounds fantastic! Quality materials, outstanding construction, and stunning value make it too good to miss.

​The addition of rosewood back & sides and stunning upgraded cosmetics takes the FG730SC to a new level – both for sound and looks.

If you want a solid guitar that is going to get better with age, then you should consider the Yamaha FGX30SC. One thing I have always loved about Yamaha guitars is their crystal clear tone with bright high end acoustics. This guitar doesn't disappoint if you want a great guitar for an inexpensive price.

Ibanez PF Series PF15ECE

The Ibanez PF15ECE is by far the best beginners electric acoustic guitar on the market. Coming in for under $200.00 you can't go wrong.

​The gloss black finish, gold die-cast tuners, and pearl dot inlays give the Ibanez PF15ECE a distinguished appearance.

The Ibanez PF15ECE includes an onboard tuner with your guitar!

If you are just starting out or have a child that wants to learn guitar, this is a great guitar for the purpose and will last you many years.​ I know, I personally own one.

I was unable to find a real review of the Ibanez PF15ECE. There was a humorous one but I figured that you were serious about choosing the right acoustic electric guitar. However I did find a video that will give you a demonstration of the sound that this entry level acoustic electric guitar can produce.

Choosing Your Acoustic Electric Guitar

Choosing an acoustic electric guitar is as personal as choosing a spouse. There is no such thing as "this one will do." It all depends on what type of musician you are, your experience level, and what you want to accomplish. However with this list of the top 10 acoustic electric guitars, there is a guitar that will fit your needs and desires.

What are some of your favorite acoustic electric guitars? Please feel free to share in the comment section below. Just be nice if I didn't end up choosing your favorite. Maybe I will next year.