The Best Acoustic Guitars Under $2000 For Every Guitar Player in 2023

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If you’re looking for a new premium acoustic guitar, and want to make the right choice, so you don’t waste your money, this post is perfect for you!

Using my 25+ years of guitar playing experience and research, I’ve concluded that the Taylor Guitar’s American Dream Series are the best acoustic guitars under $2000. This is because of its innovative & consistent construction, ease of playability, sonic versatility, and Taylor’s dedication to sustainability.

However, these guitars fall right at the top end of our $1,000-$2,000 budget, and there are some other fantastic options worth checking out.

The following list of the best acoustic guitars under $2000 has been broken down into categories based on your needs and budget as a guitar player.

Whether you’re an intermediate or experienced player who wants something better than they currently own, we’ve got some great recommendations here.

Let’s get started!

TL;DR My Top 3

Taylor American Dream Series

Taylor American Dream Series

  • Taylor Guitars' American Dream series offers premium quality and innovation at a practical price point

  • With three different body shapes and multiple tonewood combinations, there's a guitar in this series for everyone

  • It comes with Taylor's innovative V-Class bracing for better sustain, intonation, and touch response
Gibson Generation Series

Gibson Generation Series

  • A no-frill guitar that gives you that classic Gibson tone and playability for an affordable price

  • The Player Port on the top of the body gives a unique, immersive experience you won't find with other guitars on this list

  • Solid-Sitka spruce top and walnut back, and sides offer a dynamic tone that's perfect for fingerstyle, flatpicking, and strumming
Martin 15 Series

Martin 15 Series

  • The 15 Series comes in all of Martin's favorite body shapes, like the 000 and Dreadnought

  • Martin's consistent build quality ensures that your guitar arrives in excellent condition and lasts a lifetime

  • Modern neck design makes it easy for both strummers and fingerstyle players

The Best Acoustic Guitars Under $2000 in 2023 at a Glance

Editor's Choice
Taylor American Dream Series

Experience Vintage Elegance with Modern Features

The Taylor American Dream series offers an all-solid wood design, sustainable materials, innovative V-class bracing, and a great playing mahogany neck and eucalyptus fingerboard, making it a must-have for any guitar enthusiast looking for a vintage instrument with modern playability.

With various tonewood combinations and body shapes to choose from, the American Dream series has something to offer for every type of player, making it a safe and reliable choice for anyone in the market for a new acoustic guitar.

One of the challenges in the modern-day acoustic guitar buying economy is that we often take gambles with purchasing a new instrument before we test it out. While this is not ideal, there are some brands that you can safely rely on consistently delivering quality acoustic guitars that you’ll love from day one. Taylor Guitars is one such brand.

In 2020, Taylor released the American Dream lineup of guitars which pack all the things you love about a premium Taylor Guitar but with a price tag that is practical for most guitar players looking to step their game up into the big leagues.

The American Dream series features an all-solid wood design, sustainable materials, innovative V-class bracing (C-class for the GT body), and a great playing mahogany neck and eucalyptus fingerboard.

At the time of this review, there are three body shapes to choose from. A short-scale Grand Theatre, a Grand Concert body, and Taylor’s take on the dreadnought with the Grand Pacific. Each shape comes with various tonewood combinations from solid Spruce, Maple, or Mahogany tops with varying back and side woods. So no matter what kind of player and use case you’re looking for, the American Dream series has you covered.

While I love Taylor Guitars for their playing consistency and tones, their modern looks sometimes don’t jive with my aesthetic. I was extremely thrilled to see them look to the past with the American Dream design. The understated elegance reminds me of a Gibson Acoustic Guitar (which I always love the looks of).

This is a photo of Brad Johnson, the writer and owner of Song Production Pros playing a Taylor American Dream AD17e. He is wearing a white sweatshirt and hat in a guitar shop room.
Me demoing a Taylor AD17e

When I demoed some American Dream models at my local guitar shop, I fell in love with how it looks sitting under your arms. It looks like a vintage instrument you would pay twice the amount for, and it sounds like an instrument you would pay twice the amount for.

Each also comes equipped with Taylor’s ES-2 pickup system, which I love for its natural ability to bring out the wood’s natural resonance when plugged into a PA or Amp. However, suppose built-in electronics are a feature you won’t use. In that case, you can get most American Dream models without it and save some money.

One drawback with the American Dream series compared to other Taylor Guitars (especially the 300 series, which isn’t much more expensive) is there is no cutaway design. So if you’re looking to play up the neck past the 12th fret, you must have long, stretchy fingers.

At the end of the day, if you’re looking for an acoustic guitar that plays great, and has innovative and modern features while still looking like a relic of the past, then do yourself a favor and buy an American Dream guitar from Taylor, you won’t get a lemon.

Oh yeah, they also each come in left-handed versions for all you southpaws as well ;).

Which model is right for you?

Suppose you want an easy guitar to travel with or have small hands and frame, or you’re buying your child prodigy a better instrument. The American Dream AD11 models will be a great option in that case.

If you want something that excels at fingerstyle and has fantastic note separation/articulation, check out the American Dream AD12 (Spruce Top) or AD22 (Mahogany Top).

If you want a performance guitar that can project your big, bold chords over other loud instruments, check out the American Dream AD17 or AD27.

Original Audio Examples

Taylor American Dream AD17 finger strumming audio example
Taylor American Dream AD17 pick strumming audio example
Taylor American Dream AD17 fingerstyle audio example

What others are saying:

User-generated reviews from Sweetwater for the Taylor American Dream Series.
  • The American Dream series from Taylor Guitars delivers premium quality at a practical price point
  • All-solid wood design, sustainable materials, and innovative V-class bracing (C-class for the GT body) provide exceptional sound quality
  • Left-handed versions are available for all models
  • None of the acoustic guitars in this lineup feature a cutaway
  • You have to pay extra for the ES-2 electronics system
Best Value for Money
Gibson Generation Series

Experience the Legendary Gibson Sound at an Affordable Price

Get the iconic Gibson sound without breaking the bank with the Generation Series. It features solid-Sitka spruce tops, walnut backs and sides, and a modern neck profile, making it perfect for fingerstyle, flatpicking, and strumming. The Player Port on the top of the body provides a unique and immersive experience.

Although most models lack a cutaway or fancy appointments, the Generation Series offer fantastic sound and playability, making them a must-have for any Gibson enthusiast.

Gibson is an iconic, made-in-the-USA brand known for its darker acoustic tones and rugged aesthetics. When you purchase a Gibson, you’re looking for sounds that will take you back in time. The challenge with Gibson acoustic guitars for most players is they come at a high cost.

However, in 2021, Gibson released its Generation Series, which takes away all the frills to keep the cost down, but retains the sound of Gibson that has made them a must-have for guitarists for generations (sorry, I couldn’t help myself).

The Generation series has five different offerings in the lineup. The G-00 and the G-45 are the best bang for your buck regarding guitars in the $1,000-$2,000 price range. However, the G-200, G-Bird, and G-Artist get into the top end of our range, and those wouldn’t be my top pick over others on this list, depending on your needs.

The Gibson Generation Series of guitars features a Player Port on the top of the body. This port projects sound toward the player giving a unique, immersive experience you won’t find with other guitars. From playing the G-45, I loved the expressiveness and power I felt when I dug into this guitar.

However, if you’re a singer/songwriter., this added volume shooting up at your face could make you feel like you’re competing with the guitar if you aren’t singing into a microphone.

The G-Series features a solid-Sitka spruce top, walnut back, and sides for the tonewood combination. This gives you a dynamic tone that projects and has minimal overtones. This makes the guitar very versatile for fingerstyle, flatpicking, and strumming. However, the lack of overtones may feel a bit “boring” for those rhythm guitar players looking for richer harmonics.

This is a photo of Brad Johnson, the writer and owner of Song Production Pros playing a Gibson G-45. He is wearing a brown sweatshirt and hat in a guitar shop room.
This is a photo of Brad Johnson, the writer and owner of Song Production Pros playing a Gibson G-00. He is wearing a brown sweatshirt and hat in a guitar shop room.
Me playing the Gibson G-00 & G-45

When playing the G-00 and the G-45, I loved how Gibson used a modern neck profile that felt great with both chords and lead lines. The only downfall is that both models don’t feature a cutaway, so reaching those upper frets is challenging.

The G-00 and G-45 don’t have any built-in electronics, which helps keep the price to around $1,000. Still, if you need the extra amplification for live gigs, you’ll need to jump up the series in terms of price and go with either the G-Writer EC or G-200 EC (regarding the G-200 EC, this puts you over $2,000 with tax).

Suppose you’ve always wanted the Gibson name on your acoustic guitar’s headstock and are okay with a basic-looking guitar for just over $1,000. In that case, you’ll have a fantastic sounding and playing guitar. Check them out today!

Which model is right for you?

If your budget is $1,000, and you are looking for an articulate fingerstyle guitar that will lounge comfortably on the couch with you, then go with the G-00.

If you want a fuller body and a more dynamic performance guitar, then you can’t go wrong with the G-45.

If you need something for live performances, then the G-Writer EC will be the most versatile of the entire lineup, while the G-200 will command any room you play it in; however, you will be paying $2,000+ after tax.

Original Audio Examples

Gibson G-00 finger strumming audio example
Gibson G-00 pick strumming audio example
Gibson G-00 fingerstyle audio example
Gibson G-45 finger strumming audio example
Gibson G-45 pick strumming audio example
Gibson G-45 fingerstyle audio example

What others are saying:

User-generated reviews from Sweetwater for the Gibson Generation Series.
  • Get the iconic Gibson sound without breaking the bank with the USA-made Generation Series
  • Player Port immerses you in the sound for a truly unique playing experience
  • The neck feels slim, and it is easy to play on these guitars
  • The plain look may not inspire every player
  • The quality control of Gibson Acoustics can be inconsistent. However, from the guitars I played, they felt and sounded great
Best for Recording
Martin 15 Series

Infuse Your Recordings with the Iconic Martin Tone 15 Series

Experience the iconic Martin tone with the 15 Series, Martin's all-solid Mahogany acoustic guitar with excellent hardware, a consistent build, and classic Martin body shapes, making it perfect for any guitar player.

Whether you're looking for a classic porch guitar or something versatile to handle your strumming and fingerstyle recordings, the 15 Series has you covered.

C.F. Martin Acoustic Guitars need no introduction. If you’re looking for a traditional guitar with that classic tone you’ve heard on countless records, then you owe it to yourself to check out the 15 series.

The 15-Series is Martin’s all-solid Mahogany acoustic guitar with excellent hardware (I love the vintage style tuners on the Streetmasters), a consistent build, and that iconic Martin tone on their more high-end range of acoustic guitars.

There are all of Martin’s innovative body shapes, like the dreadnought, 000, and 00, in the 15 series lineup, so there is a model for every type of guitar player.

If you’re looking for something that will be your classic porch guitar that produces that iconic woody blues tone, then you have your 00. If you want something more versatile to handle strumming and fingerstyle well, you have your 000. Want to stand out over your bluegrass band and command a room, then go with the iconic D-15.

This is a photo of Brad Johnson, the writer and owner of Song Production Pros playing a Martin 000-15M StreetMaster. He is wearing a grey sweatshirt and hat in a guitar shop room.
Me playing a 000-15 Streetmaster

When demoing the 000-15 Streetmaster, I enjoyed how Martin has made a guitar that looks like it was built 80 years ago but has a modern neck design that makes it so easy to play.

The biggest reason the Martin 15 Series didn’t make the top of my list is that non of the acoustic guitars come with pickups and the lack of versatility in the tonewood construction. You get more variety from the American Dream series. Still, what you lack in versatility, you get in that Martin tone, arguably one of the best there is.

If you’re primarily playing and recording at home, anyone of the Martin 15 series acoustic guitars will make you smile. The all-mahogany has a natural compression and articulate voicing that records well.

Another thing about Martin is they know how to build consistent acoustic guitars. So you can rest assured that purchasing one of these made-in-the-USA acoustics will arrive in great condition and last you a lifetime.

Check one out today!

Original Audio Examples

Martin 000-15 Streetmaster finger strumming audio example
Martin 000-15 Streetmaster pick strumming audio example
Martin 000-15 Streetmaster fingerstyle audio example

What others are saying:

User-generated reviews from Sweetwater for the Martin 15 Series.
  • The Martin 15 series offers an affordable and traditional guitar with a classic tone and excellent hardware
  • All-solid Mahogany construction provides a consistent build and iconic Martin tone
  • Modern neck design makes the guitar easy to play
  • No options for tonewoods other than Mahogany
  • Doesn't come with a pickup and electronics system

Other guitars to consider

You will get an instrument you’ll love with the American Dream, Generation, or 15 Series acoustic guitars. Each has many different options that should cater to your specific needs.

However, I wanted to include other honorable mentions and gems worth considering.

Best for Songwriters & Fingerstyle
Guild D-20

Experience the Vintage Charm and Warmth of Your Favorite Songwriters

Looking for an acoustic that conjures up the vintage charm of your favorite indie tunes? Then you need the Guild D-20 Dreadnought. 

This all-solid mahogany guitar is built to last, with rich, warm tones perfect for any fingerstyle and strumming. The natural compression of the mahogany wood gives your performance a uniform feel.

So if you're looking for a guitar that will take you back to those classic songwriters of yesteryear, the Guild D-20 is a perfect choice.

If you’re looking for a no-frills, classic playing acoustic guitar, then the Guild D-20 should be on your shortlist.

The D-25, which the D-20 is modeled after, was Guild’s first Dreadnought style guitar released in 1968.

This Guild D-20 seeks to replicate the vintage, rich tone and charm of its ’68 counterpart with an all-solid mahogany build.

Mahogany is a durable classic hard-tonewood with an excellent, warm mid-range presence and muted highs. Mahogany also can compress sound naturally, helping a guitar player’s performance feel more uniform and even.

The D-20 exudes a worn-in, nostalgic sound that isn’t easily replicated in modern designs. The dreadnought produces a big, rich sound that hits the heart. While many dreadnoughts can suffer from a “muddy” mid-range, this Guild stays remarkably clear in those low-mids.

The Guild is not a high-fidelity guitar by any means. If you’re looking for something bright and in your face, you should look elsewhere. This guitar demands sensitive and reflective guitar players and songwriters and will record like a dream.

Suppose you’re looking for an acoustic guitar with a timeless tone, a modest look, and excellent playability. In that case, the Guild D-20 won’t let you down!

What others are saying:

User-generated reviews from Sweetwater for the Guild D-20.
  • It features an LR Baggs VTC electronics/pickup system, which sounds fantastic for live performance
  • You'll sound like the most sensitive and reflective guitar player ever
  • Full-bodied sound with a nice warm, clear mid-range presence
  • Not the guitar for you if you're looking for a modern sound
  • Lack of cutaway makes accessing upper frets difficult
Best for Versatility
Yamaha AC5R

A Perfect Acoustic Guitar to Do It All

This Japanese handcrafted all-solid wood acoustic guitar is perfect for fingerstylists and strummers alike across all musical genres.

The AC5R is lightweight and resonant, with a warm, full tone. It's equipped with Yamaha's world-renowned SRT2 pickup system, including an under-saddle piezo pickup and two high-end microphone modeling outputs. This gives you incredible flexibility and tone options when you're plugged in.

If you're looking for the best value for your money in an acoustic guitar, look no further than this Yamaha AC5R!

The Yamaha AC5R acoustic guitar is a fantastic instrument. It’s an all-solid-wood, handcrafted Japanese instrument that sounds great.

It is also considerably less expensive than guitars from US-based guitar manufacturers. A comparable guitar to the Yamaha AC5R could easily run over $2,000.

This concert acoustic-electric guitar is lightweight, resonant, warm, and full tone. It’s a versatile instrument and may be used by fingerstylists and strummers across all musical genres.

The guitar’s rich, open sound is achieved by artificially aging the solid Sitka spruce top. This gives the guitar a sound that usually takes years, if not decades, to achieve.

The construction of this guitar is lovely and utilizes classic tonewood pairing with the solid spruce top. The back and sides are solid Indian Rosewood, with an African Mahogany neck and rosewood fingerboard.

The AC5R is an acoustic-electric guitar that has performance artists in mind. This guitar features Yamaha’s well-known SRT2 pickup system. This is an under-saddle piezo pickup and two outputs of high-end microphone modeling you can blend between for a great plugged-in tone.

If you’re searching for a versatile acoustic guitar that doesn’t sacrifice quality, playability, and tone, the Yamaha AC5R is a wonderful buy!

What others are saying:

User-generated reviews from Sweetwater for the Yamaha AC5R.
  • Quality Japanese craftsmanship with great sound and tone
  • It's a versatile instrument that may be used by all players and styles
  • The SRT2 pickup system to get a more authentic amplified sound
  • It's just so easy to create beautiful music with this guitar
  • Not the most exotic looking guitar on this list
  • Some may balk at having Yamaha on their headstock

If you’re interested in learning about the best Yamaha Acoustics in the market, please refer to my article “The Best Yamaha Acoustic Guitar for All Skill Levels and Playing Styles”

Best for Gigging
Martin SC-13e

Take Your Performance to the Next Level

With The Martin SC-13e's offset body and slim neck, this guitar offers the playability of an electric guitar with the projection and sound quality of an acoustic guitar. The Fishman MX-T electronics and built-in tuner make tuning on stage seamless. 

Plus, with Martin's reputation for quality control and durability, you can rest assured that your SC-13E will last a lifetime. Bring the legendary Martin tone to the stage with the SC-13E today!

A comfortable and durable acoustic guitar is essential when you’re a touring musician.

You need a guitar with great electronics and ease of maintenance. The last thing you want is a guitar that will develop intonation issues, fret buzzes, and other issues caused by changing weather overnight.

This is a photo of Brad Johnson, the writer and owner of Song Production Pros playing a Martin SC-13e.. He is wearing a grey sweatshirt and hat in a guitar shop room.
Me demoing a SC-13e

This is where the Martin SC-13E acoustic-electric rises above the competition!

The offset body nestles nicely into your frame, while the slim neck has the playability of an electric guitar. The solid Sitka spruce top with x-bracing easily projects sound and fills a room.

The Fishman MX-T electronics and a built-in tuner are included in the soundhole of this Martin guitar. There is a mute switch that you can easily access for the pickups to make tuning your instrument on stage seamless.

The construction of this guitar is built to last. Martin Guitars is approaching 200 years of guitar making, and their quality control is some of the best in the industry.

You won’t be disappointed with the SC-13e if you want to bring the legendary Martin tone to the stage!

Original Audio Examples

Martin SC-13e finger strumming audio example
Martin SC-13e pick strumming audio example
Martin SC-13e fingerstyle audio example

What others are saying:

User-generated reviews from Sweetwater for the Martin SC-13.
  • The Martin SC-13E acoustic-electric guitar is a perfect choice for any touring musician
  • The guitar is durable, comfortable, and easy to maintain
  • Fishman MX-T electronics bring the legendary Martin tone to the stage
  • The offset body might turn off some Martin traditionalist
  • Some report the tuner isn't great and EQ is limiting on the electronics
Best for Small Hands
Taylor GS-Mini Koa

Small Hands Can Still Get a Big Sound

Looking for an acoustic guitar that's perfect for small hands? Look no further than the Taylor GS Koa Mini-e & Plus, the best option at the $1,000 price point. With its Grand Symphony body shape and short-scale length, the GS Mini offers a deep and resonant sound thanks to scalloped X-bracing and a slightly larger soundhole.

The solid Koa top wood models provide a versatile, dynamic tone perfect for fingerpicking and flatpicking. While this is a great acoustic guitar for people with small hands and frames, I think everyone should have one GS-Mini in their quiver.

The Taylor GS Koa Mini-e & Plus is the best acoustic guitar for small hands at the $1,000 price you can purchase today. The GS Mini is the most popular guitar model in the Taylor Acoustic Guitars lineup, and it isn’t a mystery why.

The Grand Symphony body shape of the GS Mini is not quite a 3/4 sized guitar, but not a full-length guitar with a slightly larger lower bout and short-scale length (23.5”).

This is a photo of Brad Johnson, the writer and owner of Song Production Pros playing a Taylor GS-Mini Koa. He is wearing a white sweatshirt and hat in a guitar shop room.
Me demoing a GS-Mini Koa

Despite its size, the guitar has a deep and resonant sound, thanks to the scalloped X-bracing and slightly larger soundhole that enhance its projection and tone.

The Taylor GS-Mini Series offers a range of tonewood options, including solid mahogany, spruce, and koa. However, the Koa Plus model stands out for its versatile and dynamic tone, suitable for various music styles.

With a solid top and laminated back and sides, the Koa Plus has a rich mid-range and bright tones, ideal for fingerpicking and flatpicking. The “Plus” version also includes Taylor’s innovative ES2 electronics system, preserving the acoustic sound quality when plugged into an amplifier for when you want to gig out.

Speaking of gigging, the upgraded premium aerospace gig bag that comes with the Koa Plus also offers superior protection while being extremely lightweight.

This acoustic guitar is enjoyable to play, especially for those with smaller hands and frames. It has that famous Taylor tone and playability that makes them one of the world’s best acoustic guitar brands in the world. Check it out today!

Original Audio Examples

Taylor GS-Mini Koa finger strumming audio example
Taylor GS-Mini Koa pick strumming audio example
Taylor GS-Mini Koa fingerstyle audio example

What others are saying:

User-generated reviews from Sweetwater for the Taylor GS-Mini Koa.
  • A fantastic playing guitar that doesn't sacrifice tone or playability
  • The Grand Symphony body shape offers a slightly larger lower bout and short-scale length (23.5'') for ease of playing
  • Solid Koa top and larger sound hole provide a rich mid-range and bright tones, ideal for fingerpicking and flatpicking
  • While the top wood is solid, the back and sides are laminate
  • To get the aerospace case and ES-2 electronics, you'll need to purchase the Koa Plus

Buying Guide for the Best Acoustic Guitar Under 2000

Dropping 2,000 dollars on anything is a big decision. When it comes to buying guitars online, it can be difficult because of all the brands, models, and designs.

First, if you aren’t sure why you should buy a more expensive guitar, you shouldn’t buy one. Stick with what you have and continue to develop your skills and playing style.

A guitar in the 1,000 to 2,000 price range will be catered towards the intermediate to the expert player who wants to take their playing to the next level and beyond.

So when you feel like your current guitar isn’t “giving back” to your level of playing, then, and only then, should you consider dropping the coin on a nice, new guitar.

Why doesn’t this article cover a more diverse lineup of guitar brands?

My list is narrowed down by some of the best guitar brands that are reputable and available. Both Taylor and Martin are known for their consistency, and is easy to find the models I recommend at your favorite online dealers.

If you want something more bespoke, you should visit a local guitar shop with a bigger variety.

The following buying guide will help narrow down other options that best suit your needs.

Body Shape

As guitar players, we can often shop with our eyes more than our ears. We might gravitate towards a specific look of a particular guitar style but not be totally familiar with what kind of tone individual body shapes will produce.

The following list will break down general characteristics of the main body types of acoustic guitar construction.

Please refer to this resource here if you want a breakdown of Martin’s body styles and what they all mean.


The dreadnought is the most popular acoustic guitar body style. It’s most likely what you think of when you envision an acoustic.

These guitars are loud and usually have a big, fat low-end. However, this low-end emphasis can sometimes come at the cost of a muddy-sounding mid-range. This can result in a loss of articulation within chords.

Players playing in bands with other loud acoustic instruments will benefit from the Dreadnought body style.


The parlor guitar has seen a resurgence in popularity since its peak during the late-eighteenth century. It is characterized by a narrow waist, a shorter scale length, and a more petite body.

These guitars aren’t thunderous. However, what they lack in volume, they make up for in punch and clarity.

Parlors are popular among guitarists for being fun to play and easy to achieve a great sound.

A parlor guitar’s worn-in, vintage sound appeals to fingerstyle, folk, blues, and recording guitarist.

Grand Concert

A Grand Concert is a fantastic body type for singer-songwriters and solo artists. It produces an intimate, balanced, and focused tone.

They’re also excellent guitars for fingerstyle guitarists and lighter strummers. The tiny, pinch-waist guitar style responds quickly, requiring little input to elicit the instrument to sing.

However, when strummed hard, the sound of grand concert acoustic guitars tends to deteriorate.

Taylor Grand Auditorium Guitar

Grand Auditorium

The Grand Auditorium body style is the most popular and versatile for the top acoustic guitars.

These guitar body styles often feature a cutaway, allowing easy playability for more modern/advanced playing styles in the upper-frets.

Suppose you’re searching for the best acoustic guitar that is a “swiss-army knife” and can excel in all genres and playing styles. In that case, a Grand Auditorium body should be where you focus your research.


The Jumbo-sized acoustic guitar is a perfect marriage between the dreadnought and grand concert. A jumbo gives you the projection and loudness of a dreadnought but with the balanced, articulate sound of the smaller-bodied concert guitars.

The pinched waist helps the sound be more articulate, allowing big cowboy chords to ring out clear and surprisingly balanced.

On the other side, Jumbos are large instruments that might be tough to play for those with smaller frames.

Pickups or No Pickups

Most acoustic guitars under 2000 will come with some sort of electronics and pickup system. Almost all of them in this price range will do a great job amplifying your guitar’s acoustic tone.

However, suppose you don’t need electronics in your guitar. If this is the case, you can often find a very high-quality guitar for less money because no electronics are featured in the guitar.

Not all models of guitars will have a non-electronics version. But when shopping for the best acoustic guitar under 2000, finding one without electronics can often get you a higher-quality guitar while saving you good money.


What makes acoustic guitars in the 1,000 to 2,000 price range worth the price? Manufacturing and construction.

Most guitars in this price range will feature all solid wood designs. All solid wood acoustic guitars have superior sound quality compared to laminate construction found in cheaper guitars.

However, some guitars in this price range will feature laminated back and sides instead of solid wood. Often in the guitar specs, it’s laminated if it isn’t specified that it’s solid wood.

Laminated woods are less prone to cracking and warping due to weather conditions. Even though laminate is often considered inferior, it isn’t always the wrong decision.

But as you start to get to the $2,000 price range, you are paying for the craftsmanship of a guitar designed to sound as best as possible. So while laminate isn’t always bad, look for an all solid wood guitar if you can and learn how to care for it properly, so it lasts a lifetime.


One of the most crucial aspects to consider when purchasing an electric or acoustic guitar is whether or not the company you’re dealing with follows environmentally responsible business practices.

Deforestation is responsible for around 1/5 of global greenhouse gas emissions, and it’s been estimated that illegal logging accounts for up to 40% of wood procurement(1).

When purchasing a guitar, consider its impact on our environment. Like Taylor, acoustic guitar manufacturers are leading the charge in environmentally responsible manufacturing methods (2).

Paying a little more to support an ethical supply chain from the raw materials to the people who construct your guitar is well worth the investment.


Thinking about the woods that will produce your desired sound is critical. Tonewoods significantly impact the tone of acoustic guitars, not just their quality and looks.

Soundboard (Topwood)

The soundboard is the most crucial tonewood in an acoustic guitar’s construction. It will directly impact your guitar’s dynamic range, tone, and playability.

The most popular Soundboard tonewoods are:

  • Spruce: Versatile and dynamic.
  • Mahogany: Produces woodier, warm tones with a natural compression to the sound.
  • Koa: Beautiful and has a very bright sound.
  • Cedar: A softwood with a quick response but not a great dynamic range.
Koa Wood
Cedar Wood

Body Wood

The body and sides of the guitar add more flavor and “seasoning” to the tone.

The most common body and sides tonewoods are:

  • Rosewood: Rosewood emphasizes the low and high end. Making a smiley face EQ curve.
  • Mahogany: Adds articulation and depth to the mid-range while helping with projection.
  • Sapele: A sustainable mahogany alternative.
  • Maple: A balanced, if not a slightly bright tonewood that has excellent projection.
  • Koa: Great projection and a high-end boost to the guitar’s overall tone.
  • Walnut: An earthier version of maple that adds great sustain to a guitar’s tone.


The most asked questions about expensive guitars.

What is the nicest sounding acoustic guitar?

It depends on what you’re looking for in a guitar. Some people might prefer the mellower sound of a cedar-top guitar. In contrast, others might like a spruce top guitar’s crisp, dynamic sound.

One of the essential factors in determining the sound of an acoustic guitar is the type of wood used for the top. This will impact the guitar’s tone the most and, depending on your taste, will make a guitar sound better or worse to your ears.

What makes a guitar worth $2000?

A few key factors can make a guitar worth $2000. The quality of construction and materials used are critical, as is the increased depth of tone and playability.

Also, acoustic guitars that get up into the 1,000 to 2,000 dollar range start to specialize in specific tones and playing styles. They aren’t catering to a broad audience of buyers but to the particular wants of a guitar player.

Ultimately, it’s up to the buyer to decide what they think a guitar is worth. If you’re looking for a high-quality instrument that will last a lifetime, then spending $2000 on a guitar may be well worth it.

However, if you’re just starting out and don’t have much money to spend, a cheaper guitar may be the right option for you.

How there isn’t any 12-string acoustic guitars on this list?

I did not include any 12-string acoustic guitars on my list because they are more of a specialty instrument.

However, I created a separate article titled “The Best 12-String Acoustic Guitars for Every Style in 2023“ that will help you discover some great options!

To Recap

The Taylor American Dream series is the Editor’s Choice for best acoustic guitar under 2000. Its features make it worth the hefty price tag, including innovative construction, easy playability, and a inspired vintage look.

If you want to invest in a pricier instrument that will last, this is what I recommend!

A picture of Brad Johnson (Owner & Writer of Song Production Pros) playing and testing a guitar at the Sam Ash Westminster Store. The guitar being played is a Taylor 814ce.

Why you can trust my content

These reviews and articles are written by me, Brad Johnson, the creator of Song Production Pros.

I've been playing music since I was nine years old and have played, used, and owned many instruments and pro audio gear. My reviews are based on my hands-on experience, user-generated reviews, and subject matter expert reviews.

Please refer to my page, My Review Process, for more details on how I approach my review articles.

Photo of author
Brad Johnson
Brad is the creator of Song Production Pros. He writes songs and surfs on the weekends when he's not too busy with family or this website. He writes music under the moniker FJ Isles, and can be heard on all streaming services.