While dreadnoughts seem to be the standard shape for many guitars, they can be frustrating in size when it comes to getting your arms over it. Plus, you might even have smaller hands that just can’t stretch as wide as your well-endowed peers.
No matter. There’s a fix for that.
Whether you’re shopping for your pre-teen, teenager, or yourself, there’s a small guitar that will perfectly match your body frame and your smallish hands!
The Best Small Body Acoustic Electric Guitars
You don’t have to be on the short end of the stick to appreciate a scaled-down guitar. In fact, many guitarists of larger stature enjoy playing a small acoustic electric guitar. Why? It offers greater ease of playability.
However, players of all ages and statures can have various hand sizes that affects playability. Our lineup presents some of the best small body guitars to improve playability for smaller persons, increase travel length, and provide refreshing tonality for finger-style players.
Beware though, the price tag may not be so small on a small-sized guitar. Depending on the level of quality and brand you may be scoping out, it could cost you. Thanks to our lineup, we’ve got quite the variety in price range for you!
|Taylor GS Mini-e Koa||Body: Koa|
|Expression System 2||Check Price|
|LX1E Little Martin|
|Fishman Isys T||Check Price|
|System 68 pickup||Check Price|
|Epiphone PR-4E||Body: Mahogany/Spruce|
|Passive piezo pickup||Check Price|
Our 4 Top Small Electric Acoustic Guitars
Taylor GS Mini-e Koa – Best Small Body
You’re not missing out on resonance with this scaled-down dreadnought with the rounded bottom. In fact, while many small body guitars often forfeit a hefty bass presence, the GS Mini-e Koa guitar offers reverberated bass tones thanks to its shapely derriere.
While its bell-like chimes are the prominent tones, you can expect your resonance to evolve as the Koa wood ages. By then, you should be a pro player that knows the ins and outs of how your Taylor works.
As mentioned earlier, smaller guitars are excellent options for finger-style players, and the Taylor GS Mini is no exception. Small hands or not, this guitar is worth the buy for any enthusiastic guitar player and collector! However, be prepared to lay down a hefty cash payment for this baby.
LX1E Little Martin Travel Guitar
If the budget is tight, this Little Martin might be the only Martin you will ever own. While it still sports a hefty price tag, it’s cheaper than the Taylor GS Mini-e guitar, but it still holds quality where you need it most.
You can thank Ed Sheeran for possibly bringing back the popularity of small body guitars, and yes, he is a fan of the Martin LX Series. Even if you’re not up in arms about the troubadour, this is still one of the best small body guitars that’s worth your time and your money.
While compromises were made to bring costs down, Martin got creative with highly-pressurized mahogany laminate, Fishman electronics, and a richlite fretboard. It’s a crowd favorite, and a favorite of ours!
Yamaha APXT2 3/4-Size Acoustic-Electric
This Yamaha is expertly designed for small hands that want a small price tag within reach. As one of our most budget-friendly, small-sized guitars, it definitely earned its place in this lineup.
Its neck is fully accessible for adults with shorter arms and smaller hands, so you know youth players are going to claim this guitar as their own. Looking past just being user-friendly in size, it’s also an excellent guitar for travel or practice.
Remember how we mentioned that larger framed players appreciate the ease of use a smaller guitar offers? This guitar epitomizes the perfect size for full sound while joshin’ about and having a good, jammin’ time – plugged-in of course. For the price, you can’t pass it up!
Epiphone PR-4E – Best for Small Hands
This guitar isn’t technically considered a small guitar, but we’ve listed it here because it’s actually smaller than you would expect. While it is a full-size guitar, it’s not a dreadnought, and its cutaways make for comfortable handling.
We felt it worthy of an honorable mention in this lineup for a few reasons. Players aged 12 and up would definitely find it appropriate to wield without feeling like they were strumming a “kid-size” guitar. Adults on the shorter end of the stick will find that this instrument was made for small hands because its frets aren’t too wide. Obviously, this also improves playability for beginner players too – just a bonus tip!
Additionally, the fact that this guitar also comes with a complete equipment and accessories package without a ridiculous price makes it a winner in our books. If you want large sound, big value, and full-size aesthetics for a small price with benefits for the smaller person, this is the Epiphone guitar for you!
What to Look for in a Small Body Acoustic-Electric Guitar
Small-size guitars can get a bad rap from those vain guitarists who have played nothing but a dreadnought their entire lives. Well, scaled-down guitars used to be all the rave in Europe once upon a time, and their popularity is back in fashion. Scaled-down guitars are also excellent instruments for practice jams and for hauling while traveling. There’s a lot to benefit from when you own a small guitar for whatever reason and despite your size. But, here’s what you need to know before you buy!
- Tone woods: Laminate is quite likely the norm, however, you can find solid top guitars (per brand) with a higher budget. Laminate can definitely be more impervious to damage, especially while on the road.
- Size: Small, scaled-down, and compact designs will vary. Travel or parlor size guitars will be the norm.
- Shape: Shape will vary. It could be a scaled-down, customized dreadnought, or it might have cutaways that make for better handling.
- Electronics: For a scaled-down size, you’ll need to make up for the lack of sound with the electronics. You might want to be brand-specific or look for a more expensive, small-sized guitar for the best electronics.
- Accessories: Additional accessories and equipment are typically offered with the cheaper guitars. If you already have equipment, you might just want to spend a little more on a higher-quality, small guitar.
- Value: As a scaled-down sized guitar, you’re going to get immediate cost savings versus a full-size guitar. However, brands, quality, and unique features can quickly run up the costs to rival full-size guitars. Ensure money spent is inline with the features you’re after.
Less Can be More!
We all know the saying, “Less is more.” But, in this case, it really can be. There’s no point in spending full-size prices on a full-size guitar if it doesn’t suit your needs.
Despite your reasons for wanting a scaled-down guitar, they offer versatile and multiple benefits that not even a full-size guitar can achieve. Make your own signature groove with a small guitar like Ed Sheeran who brought life back into the scaled-down instrument and is now a millionaire. You know, that could be you!