What’s the Difference between an Acoustic and Electric Guitar

Someone said it right, the guitar is the proper form of self-expression. So, follow the path where the rhythm of the guitar takes you. Seems like you are looking to buy a new guitar. Let us tell you guitars comes in two basic types; acoustic and electric.

Wondering, what’s the difference between an acoustic and electric guitar? One of the most asked questions from new guitarists. Modern music is baseless without guitars. Having proper knowledge of guitars will help you create the right melody.

Although any guitars can create similar kinds of sounds, their functionality is different. Here we will discuss all the basics, including dissimilarities of the acoustic and electric guitar. At the end of the article, you will certainly know which one to choose. Read on to know more.

choose acoustic guitar vs electric guitar

What is Acoustic Guitar?


Acoustic is a type of guitar that can make sounds without electricity. It projects sounds of its vibrating strings through the air. The generated sound waves from the strings vibrate through the guitars’ bodies.

The guitar’s body works as a soundbox, and the top side works as a soundboard. It amplifies the vibration sounds. Since this guitar doesn’t require plugging, it is an excellent option for beginners. The acoustic guitar comes in the following types;

  • Parlor
  • Dreadnought
  • Auditorium
  • Jumbo
  • Dreadnought Variants
  • Classical
  • Grand Auditorium
  • More comfortable to play on a steel-string acoustic guitar.
  • It offers a naturally soothing and calmer tone.
  • No artificial amplification.
  • Do not need to buy any cables to start playing.
  • You can take it anywhere due to its cordless design.
  • Ease of performing fingerpicking.
  • Using different tunings is far better.
  • Best for beginners.
  • Creates more pressure on fingers as control is absolutely on fingers.
  • Playing chords and barre chords is much harder.
  • More string buzzing because of hard strings.
  • Relatively more fragile.

Read more: What is gain on a guitar amp?The Difference Between Gain and Volume

What is Electric Guitar?


An electric guitar uses one or more pickups to transform the strings vibration into electrical signals. Electromagnetic induction creates this signal and fed into a guitar amplifier before sending it to the speaker. Finally, we hear an audible sound.

These guitars don’t have a soundbox like acoustics guitars. It uses pickups to amplify the sound. These pickups are highly sensitive, and slight movements on the fretboard are audible. Electric guitars are available in the following types;

  • Solid-body guitars
  • Fender style
  • Gibson style
  • PRS style
  • Hollow body electric guitars
  • Semi-hollow body guitars
  • Relatively, the strings are much softer.
  • More comfortable to play on fingers.
  • Easier to hold down chords.
  • Allows wearing headphones when it seems disturbing to others.
  • Need to but amplifier additionally, which is costly.
  • Not suitable for beginners.

The Difference between an Acoustic and Electric Guitar


At this point, you should know how both guitars differ from one another.  Both include strings, frets, neck, tuning pegs, and lots of similar physical parts. In many ways, they work in the same way as well.

Yet, each type of guitars has distinctive sounds. Both of them are better for a specific kind of music. Let’s have a look at what’s the difference between an acoustic and electric guitar! Here we compared both guitars based their features.

Guitars Body

Acoustic Guitar- Acoustic guitar has a hollow body. Here the sound is amplified naturally inside the guitar’s body. Once you vibrate the strings, it echoes through entire guitars.

Electric Guitars- Electric guitars have a solid body. It requires electric amplification to produce sound.

Shape and Size

Acoustic Guitars- These guitars come in various sizes, including Concert, Grand concert, jumbo, auditorium, grand auditorium, and so on. Also, acoustics guitars are relatively larger but lighter than electric guitars. The larger body is required for sound amplification.

Electric Guitars- It also comes in a variety of sizes, but the size doesn’t influence the sound quality. Electric guitars are relatively smaller than acoustics guitars.

String

Acoustic Guitars- It includes heavy steel strings for stronger vibration. The steel strings are relatively harder to hold down and carry out. Most acoustic guitars include lighter nylon strings, which are easier to play and produce a more quiet tone.

Electric Guitars- These guitars include thinner and lighter steel strings. It doesn’t need to be substantial as the sound is amplified differently. Small strings are easy on fingers and make the lead guitar technique easier.

Neck and String actions

Acoustic Guitars- Necks are slightly thicker. The strings are further away from each other, which makes it harder to hold down.

Electric Guitars- It includes a bit thinner neck, and strings are far closer. So, it doesn’t need much room to resonate and easier to fret.

What’s the Difference between an Acoustic and Electric Guitar

Genres

Acoustic Guitars- These guitars are used for many contemporary forms and even not- contemporary styles of music.

Electric Guitars- You can make different genres with a single model of electric guitars. For example, jazz, blues, soul, pop, funk, rock, country, etc. In short, it is more versatile than acoustic guitars.

Tone

Acoustic Guitars- Most acoustic guitars feature a single tone without amplification. But, there are tonal differences between different guitars depending on their material and sizes. You can create music like country, classical, blues, pop, and folk.

Electric Guitars- It features multiple pickups and tonal options. You can create a variety of tones and effects with an electric guitar.

Which One Is The Best?


Well, it is hard to decide, and you cannot declare anyone’s winner here. Since you know both sides of the story, ask yourself which type of music you like. For instance, if you like metal and rock music, you should buy an electric guitar.

Elsewise if you like classical and wish to be a campfire guitarist, buy an acoustic guitar. It is better to keep both if you cannot make up your mind. It’s simple as that.

To Sum Up!

Still wondering, what’s the difference between an acoustic and electric guitar? Well, in that case, you should try them out physically before making any decision. If you ask for our suggestion, try acoustic guitars initially and then switch to electric guitars. It’s time to set up your guitar and play on!