What is the difference between: Classical vs Acoustic guitars?
This is one of the questions we get asked almost every day here at GuitarBitz and it’s a good’un!
In this blog I’ll point out some of the main differences and why they matter, so that you know you're purchasing the right type of guitar 🎸
A classical guitar and an acoustic guitar have more similarities than differences!
For example they both look the same, have 6 strings and are tuned to E standard. This means they’re virtually played in exactly the same way. But having said that, they also have very different characteristics.
The two biggest differences you’ll notice are:
● The strings. Acoustic guitars have steel strings and classical guitars have nylon strings. Each have pro’s and con’s.
● The width of the neck. The neck on a classical is much wider than an acoustic neck, therefore the strings are further apart.
|The steel strung acoustic (western) guitar|
Is a classical guitar better for a beginner? In general, yes. Especially for children!
Is it easier to play classical or acoustic? With classical guitar strings being made from nylon, they are softer on the fingers and easier to push in. Also the wider neck of a classical gives your fingers more room to fit on the fretboard, which can make it easier to play chords.
Do classical guitars sound better than acoustic? That’s for you to decide! They both have a very different tone and resonance. Nylon strings are thicker and produce a warmer, softer sound. Steel strings produce a bright, crisp, more twangy sound, which is noticeably louder.
|Nylon strung classical guitar|
Is a classical guitar cheaper than an acoustic? We have brand new excellent quality acoustic guitars starting at only £129 and full-size classicals starting at £139!
Can you play a classical guitar like an acoustic? Short answer - yes!
Can you put acoustic strings on a classical? NO! A classical is built for the lighter tension of plastic nylon strings. If you put steel strings on a classical it could ruin the guitar - so don’t try it!
And vice versa, it’s not recommended to put nylon strings on an acoustic either (unless you are fully setting up the guitar).
Is a classical better than an acoustic? The jury is out on this one!
Leave a comment at the bottom with your opinion!