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For the most part there are basically four different guitar body sizes you will see for sale. Those are Jumbo size, Dreadnaught, Grand Concert, Orchestra Models (OMs) and Parlor sizes. Moreover these are the most popular guitars sizes you will have a choice of.
You should try each one and decide which one feels the best. Beginners could start with a Parlor or Grand Concert size and work their way up to a dreadnaught or Jumbo size. In addition it will all depend on what style of music you play. Fingerpickers like to play Orchestra Models (OMs) or Parlor size.
Parlor guitars were said to be made for women. A smaller sized guitar women could play at home in the parlor. These guitars are really popular today with fingerstyle players.
They are small bodied sized guitars. In addition they are excellent for the beginner. Especially for children and smaller people. Many manufacturers make excellent quality parlor sized guitars. In addition many parlor guitars are made from high quality materials. Spruce or mahogany tops have an excellent tone.
Grand Concert – Orchestra Model Guitars (OMs)
These guitars are basically the same size although some may be slightly different in the width of the body. This is the size of the guitar I play. In addition I also play the Ibanez AC340 shown in the picture.
This is my preference for a comfortable sized guitar. As well if you pay a little more you get a beautiful sounding guitar. There seem to be more choices in this size model than in the parlor size. Moreover if you are plugged in, then size really doesn’t matter.
The dreadnaught size guitar is the most common. The Seagull Coastline Spruce QIT is the one I play. Depending on the type of music we are playing I will normally have two guitars on the go.
Some people may find a dreadnaught a little too big. In addition they are not suited for smaller people and kids for learning on. They are however good for unplugged playing. The dreadnaught will give a louder tone simply because of the bigger body size.
The largest sized guitar you find in your local music shop. Although there are larger sized guitars, these are the most common large sized guitars.
You’ll find these played by more traditional country players. In addition you will get a real full tone out of a guitar of this size. This is definitely not a guitar you should learn on. But as a larger person you may graduate to this size.
When I think of this size guitar I think of the older players like Roy Clark. Players like him could really make these guitars sing.
It may seem confusing as to what size guitar you should play. The simple answer is if you play now and you find your guitar uncomfortable then it is a time to change. A guitar too big for you will hold you back from developing.
Go to your local music store and try various sized guitars. Moreover it will help you enjoy playing even more.
My Ibanez AC340 Artwood Recommendation
I am the proud owner of an Ibanez AC340 Artwood. It is simply the most comfortable guitar to fingerpick that I have owned. And as a bonus it sounds amazing.
I have been fingerpicking for two years. I actually started just before the pandemic upset our world. However, because of the pandemic, I had tons of time to practice. I still strum with the end of my index finger. Not much though.
What Convinced Me To Buy The Ibanez
I had been looking at Grand Concert sized guitars for some time. Furthermore saw a review of the guitar comparing it to a $1000 Martin. I was very impressed. The tone was very comparable. Watch the review.
Furthermore I could not find the Ibanez for sale in any music store in our area. A music store about an hour away had one for sale. In addition it had a slight blemish on the top, which was barely noticeable. I drove the hour and played it. Consequently I immediately purchased it.
At a local music store you can order this guitar for $429 (Cdn). With electronics and a cutaway it is $589. Because of the slight blemish I managed to get $100 off the list price. What a deal. With the money I saved I bought a really good Tric case for it.
- Okoume back, sides and solid top
- Satin-finished neck
- Thermo aged bridge, real bone nut and saddle
- Chrome die-cast tuners
If you are into fingerstyle, the Ibanez AC340 is a great choice. It not only looks great, it sound good. It is extremely comfortable to play, and in addition, extremely light.
I’m more than happy with my purchase. I would recommend it to any guitarist. Find it here on Reverb.
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