The Different Types of Acoustic Guitars – Acoustic Guitar Body Types

Hello, so let’s talk about the different types of acoustic guitars. The common ones are the Dreadnought guitars (6 strings and 12 strings), Classic and Parlor. Every type of guitar is created to help all musical styles. You can see every different type of guitar in the pictures below. So let’s review each one of these styles.

different types of guitars

Dreadnought Style Acoustic Guitar

Even though there are many types of dreadnought guitars, it is the first model that comes to mind when talking about “guitars”. Sometimes called the western guitar, the dreadnought is a great instrument with a full, bass sound. In fact, the dreadnoughts are very noisy guitars, made to keep up with the singers or just to fit a wide range of musical language. This is a must-have guitar for the average guitarist.

The different dreadnought guitar styles include the standard dreadnought, made from a wide range of the most common woods such as mahogany and pine, and the most exotic woods such as the rosewood that more commonly known as lancewood. Some of the guitars don’t use wood completely, a material composed of carbon fiber instead. These material changes in its montage vary the sound of the instrument a bit.

Dreadnought of 12 Strings

This type of guitar has 12 strings instead of the 6 strings you get with a standard guitar, but they are very similar in design. The strings of this guitar work in fine-tuned pairs with the same notes. The first two pairs are adjusted exactly to the same tone, while the others are fine-tuned with the same notes one-eighth apart. The extra tension on the strings on this type of guitar make it less suitable for beginners. Without a doubt, it is a great guitar for fingerpicking but the bending is almost impossible.

Cutaway Dreadnought

This type of dreadnought style has a cut on its body which affects the sound of the guitar, but you actually need to reach the frets if you want to play them. The assumption is that there is a loss in the response to the bass because of the reduced internal volume. Again, a well-made guitar will have a great sound anyway.


The term “guitar parlor” goes back to the days when songs were not even recorded. Shows were performed live and often in saloons for the luck of those that could have it. Now, the term describes the style and size of the guitar. Parlor guitars have smaller bodies than dreadnoughts and in many cases are smaller than classic guitars.

Against popular belief, it’s smaller size is not to help the smaller musicians, but to make sure that acuteness, bass and all the frequencies between them have the same volume. In an almost acoustically perfect environment as a “lounge” or a concert hall, this frequency response is still a necessity if the music is not overcharged with bass sounds.

Many times (in fact, generally), the neck of a Parlor guitar (salon) is larger than a dreadnought. Parlor guitars are often the choice of many musicians that use the “fingerstyle” technique. A bigger neck fits this style of playing because it gives more space to get the individual fingers between the strings.

Between the different types of guitars, the medium frequency of this guitar is effective and pleasant, making this instrument a good option for everyone but especially those who play flamenco or folk music.

Classic Guitar (Nylon Strings)

Classic guitars are known for the use of nylon strings (known before as catgut). Normally, these instruments have a long, flat neck. Some “old school” instructors think this is a guitar only for beginner students because they consider the strings tension softer and of a larger caliber to ease the fingers (today, even low-cost instruments could be very good and help when playing. So get a guitar that suits the style of music you want to play).

Classic guitars are more for classic music, erudite, folk, MPB (Brazilian popular music) etc.. and leave the steel strings for other popular styles. But this is not a rule of course!

Jumbo Acoustic Guitar

The jumbo guitars are made to be loud and full of bass. It’s basically the same functionality and use as the dreadnought. If well done, they are great guitars. In some situations, the medium frequencies get lost, dominated by the bass. Be careful if you are buying this style
of guitar and listen well in different rooms and environments.

I think I gave all of you a good foundation for the different types of acoustic guitars right?

Until the next article!

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