#1
What's the physical difference between Acoustic and Classical guitars. My son is learning classical guitar and is ready for a new guitar. I have been given so many conflicting opinions on what he should buy.
Basically would it be better to buy an acoustic guitar or stick to a classical.
He currently has 3 quarter size el-cheapo classical. Time to spend some bucks since hos doing so well.

All advice welcome.

Tks in advance

#2
basically, an acoustic has steel strings and a classical has nylon strings. typically, steel strings are harder on the fingers than nylon. also, classical guitars usually have a wider string spacing than an acoustic - thus also having a wider neck - leaving a bit more space for the picking hand to get in there. If he is learning the classical style and enjoying it, then I'd say stick to a classical. It's actually for the same reason I have a bunch of electrics, a classical and never ever owned an acoustic
#3
Quote by zaynS
What's the physical difference between Acoustic and Classical guitars. My son is learning classical guitar and is ready for a new guitar. I have been given so many conflicting opinions on what he should buy.
Basically would it be better to buy an acoustic guitar or stick to a classical.
He currently has 3 quarter size el-cheapo classical. Time to spend some bucks since hos doing so well.

All advice welcome.

Tks in advance



If he's doing well and is already accustomed to playing a nylon string guitar, then get him another Classical guitar since it will be an easy transition for him ( to a larger scale version of the same instrument). Acoustic guitars feel different and sound different. It's almost like a completely different instrument really.

It's not clear from your post whether your son is actually learning true Classical guitar ( as in with lessons, Bach, etc., playing fingerstyle etc.) or if he is simply noodling on a guitar that happens to be a Classical guitar. In any event, I'd still stick with a Classical nylon string guitar for now. That instrument will last him a lifetime.

You will eventually be buying him an acoustic and probably an electric further down the road as well, so brace yourself!
#4
They are both "acoustic" guitars. That just means they produce sound without electronics...
One is a "steel string" guitar, and the other is a "nylon-string" guitar. There are others... Archtops, resonators, etc, etc. They are all "acoustic".

The differences in the guitars themselves are many. The steel string is constructed much more strongly as steel strings have about twice the tension of nylons.
As a result, the strings are normally anchored through the bridge and held against a hardwood "bridge plate" on the underside of the top.
The top, back, and sides are much more heavily braced, and the neck is normally fitted with a truss rod to counteract all that tension. Tuning machines are designed to handle steel strings.

The Nylon string guitar is more lightly constructed. The strings are fixed to the bridge itself, normally with a special knot. The fingerboard is wider and flatter than that of the steel-string, and there is normally no truss rod. The tuners have large-diameter plastic inserts to handle the stretchy nylon strings.

As far as playing.... Well, that's a whole 'nuther article.

Lots of people play fingerstyle "classical" music on steel string guitars. Quite a few play nylon instruments with flatpicks (think Willie Nelson...)....

Formal "Classical Guitar" is a very specialized discipline with a specific method, an established body of work, etc.
#6
Moving this to a more appropriate forum
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Spector and Markbass
#8
Quote by reverb66
...[ ]....It's not clear from your post whether your son is actually learning true Classical guitar ( as in with lessons, Bach, etc., playing fingerstyle etc.) or if he is simply noodling on a guitar that happens to be a Classical guitar. In any event, I'd still stick with a Classical nylon string guitar for now. That instrument will last him a lifetime. ...[ ].....
Since our TS seems to be a no show, at least for the time being, I'm going to chat with you.

We have sorted out the fact that an, "acoustic guitar",. and a "classical guitar", are both "acoustic guitars".

But I though it would be prudent to describe where "classical guitar", actually fits into the larger and much broader scope of, "acoustic guitar".

Most classical fit into a very narrow range of neck width and body size. Even materials for the build are somewhat predictable.

But, there are many other "nylon string acoustic, acoustic electric, semi acoustic AE", and so forth. So, I guess I'm saying that pigeon holing a nylon strung guitar as a "classical guitar", is sort of limiting your possibilities. As much as I am loathe to admit it, Ovation has some really neat nylon strung instruments. As does Godin, and many other makers. A few makers offer the same basic instrument in 12 fret and 14 fret versions, with cutaways as well.

So, unless you're going to study honest to gosh "classical technique" with the standardized playing position, instrument and discipline, keep an open mind as you shop.
I saw this:

Don't know how it sounds or anything. But, it sure looks like it would be neat amped up for performance. In any case it gives you an idea of how the possibilities expand when you go from talking about classical guitars, and open up the category to nylon strung guitars.

And yeah, good catch, that is a Taylor T-5 knockoff, which Taylor also offers in a nylon strung model....
Last edited by Captaincranky at Jun 7, 2014,