Electric guitars come in numerous shapes and sizes, and they are designed for use in different music genres. So, finding the best lightweight electric guitar depends on your personal preference and musical goals.
In this write-up, we will bring you from the best metal-axes to fender to the greatest semi-hollow electric guitars to ensure that what music genre you are interested in, you will get a suitable guitar for you.
Most importantly, before you purchase any lightest electric guitar, it is paramount that you research to know which guitar is ideal for your music type.
However, although there are different types of electric guitars, they all have the same working principle. For this reason, we will bring you a mixture of various guitars to choose from. Nevertheless, for you to get not only high-quality but also pure sound from your guitar, you need a guitar with exceptional features.
Equally important, make sure you consider your level of playing skills, style, among other factors, when buying an electric guitar. When you have all the details on your fingertips, it will be easier to find the best electric guitar that will suit your musical needs.
How to Choose a Lightweight Electric Guitar (Must Have Features)
When it comes to electric guitars, pickup is a must-have feature because it determines the sound of the guitar. In most cases, you will find a single-coil pickup in electric guitars. It is made of a single magnet that is wrapped in wire, and its function is to catch the vibrations of the strings and then convert the waves into electric signals.
The pickups help to produce a crisper sound. Therefore, it is essential for the guitar that you settle to have pickups. However, in some cases, they might have a humming sound effect, and they are more vulnerable to interference.
These are two single coils that are joined to each other by polarities, and they face opposite directions. Their main work is to prevent humming. They have much louder and thicker sound as compared to their single-coil counterparts. Humbuckers are critical for jazz and rock guitar types.
3. Guitar Neck
The length of the guitar affects the sound that the guitar produces because it affects your comfort while playing the guitar. The neck is usually made of wood, and it houses the head-stock, which holds the tuners and the fret-board.
The most important thing that you should consider on the neck of the guitar is the depth and the width of the neck. The neck should complement the size of your hand. Generally speaking, if your hands are small, then you should go for a guitar with a shallow neck. While if your hands are big, then you should go for a guitar with a wider neck.
4. Scale Length
Electric guitars have small scales. The longer the scale, the bright the shimmer, and the tighter the tension. Shorter scales on the other have less tension, and so the strings can bend. Furthermore, short scales have warmer tones, and they enhance the playability of the guitar.
5. Wood type
The type of wood used on the guitar has a direct effect on the sound. The wood used has a significant impact on the sound because the vibrations of the strings have resonance on the wood. For this reason, it is critical to know the kind of wood used to make the guitar.
Some of the common woods that are used to make guitars include:
- Alder and ash
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6. Number of Frets
Most electric guitars come with 22 frets. However, others have 24 frets. If you want a guitar that will play on a high octave, then you should go for one with 24 frets. Equally important, you should consider the type of wood that is used to make the fret.
Choose a guitar that will support your playing style. Every detail of the guitar has an impact on the sound it produces. Therefore, some of the things that you should consider are the strings, pickup, and tone-wood. Your style and genre of music are the main determinants of the type of guitar that you will buy.
8. Tuning Machine
The tuning machine of the guitar is found on the head-stock of the neck. The main use of the tuner is to adjust the tension of the strings. The tuning machine must be of a high-quality. Also, it should be protected against corrosion and rust. Some of the best quality tuners are those that are coated with chrome. Some are lockable at the bridge and the nut.
The prices of electric guitars vary from one type to another. Generally speaking, the prices of electric guitars range between $100 and $1000. The higher the cost of the guitar, the higher the quality and the better the service.
You should choose a guitar that has been well-inspected and well-tuned so that you can play it easily. If you purchase a guitar that has not been well adjusted, it will prove a difficult task to play it.
Moreover, if you are a beginner, you might not be able to play a guitar well at the start. Therefore, if you are not well experienced, you might overlook the playability of the guitar when buying it. Do not expect that every guitar in the market has been adjust and is playable.
The playability of the guitar is determined by the other factors that we have highlighted above like the material used. If the material used is of poor quality, it might be difficult to play the guitar because the strings are too high above the fingerboard. Such a design will be very difficult to play because you will need to apply a lot of pressure for the strings to reach against the fret.
Therefore, proper adjustment and playability of the guitar is key to playing the guitar. Also, when the guitar is playable, it increases the morale and confidence in playing the guitar.
11. Size of the guitar
Another crucial feature to look for when buying a guitar is the size. A large guitar for your hands will prove it a uphill task to play it. Besides that, it will be uncomfortable or even painful to lay the guitar.
When the guitar is too big, raising your arms high when playing can make your shoulders uncomfortable. Over-stretching your arms while playing the guitar will prove it a technical problem to your muscles as you stretch them out to reach the strings.
This will make it hard for you to move your fingers freely on the fingerboard. You will enjoy playing your guitar when it is appropriate in size to your arms.
There are numerous electric guitar brands available in the market. And all brands are not the same. Therefore, it is better to search for your favorite brand and go for it. Having a guitar of your favorite brand will motivate you and you will enjoy playing it as compared to playing any brand.
This is a critical factor to consider more especially if you are a beginner. Buying a guitar of your favorite brand will increase your interest and motivate you to play it more often and within a short time, you will become a pro.
Types of Electric Guitars
Electric guitars come in three main body types. These are:
- Solid-body – this is the most commonly available guitar body type. They are made of a single solid wood slap. They are available from a simple body with one pickup to a more detailed slap with many pickups. The tonewood influences the sound it produces, but they do not resonate.
- Semi-hollow body – this is the type between the solid and hollow guitars. They are partially hollow, but they have a center that is made of solid wood, which helps to sustain and prevent the feedback sound that is found in hollow guitars. These kinds of guitars are more suitable for the blues genre of music because they are more resonant and more sustainable. Besides the blues, they can also be used for rock and jazz, among other genres.
- Hollow Body – These kinds of guitars have a hollow body, just like the name suggests. They are more similar to acoustic guitars. Because of the hollowness, their sound is more resonant as compared to their sold body counterparts. However, they are more prone to developing an arch-top and produce feedback sounds. Because of their deeper tone, they are more ideal for jazz kind of music.
Top 5 Lightweight Electric Guitars in 2020
1. Fender Player Stratocaster Electric Guitar
Stratocaster comes in a sleek and stylish manner, which makes it stand apart from the crowd. It has a contoured design, which increases comfort whenever you are playing. The body is made of Alder wood, and the finish is done with a polyester gloss, which makes it shiny while on the stage.
You can combine the bridge and the neck of this guitar in five different positions. It allows you to control the sound with the help of the tone knob master. Also, the bridge is made with a smooth traveler, so it stays in tune for long.
This guitar is ideal for both professional and beginner players. Besides that, it does not have any maintenance costs.
- Easy to play
- The tones are easy to set
- Has a sleek vintage design
- The smooth neck allows for fast playing
- Tone capabilities are versatile
- Does not play heavy metals
- Switching between pickups accidentally is easy
2. Yamaha Pacifica 112V
It was first produced in 1990, and it is ideal for jam. It is well renowned for its play-ability and excellent sound.
This is probably the best electric guitar for beginners. It has excellent construction, which is simple and has all the necessary specifications. It has modern, lighter, and brighter in terms of sound. The humbucker of the bridge is beefy and does not have the mid-range, and it helps to produce a pure and clean sound.
It comes with a single-coil, which helps to impress and amp the sound. It is meant to be used for a wide variety of music genres and playing styles.
It comes with numerous pickup configurations that help to offer a wide variety of sounds and distortions. Also, it has a five-position switch.
- It is ideal for beginners
- Very versatile
- Produces clean and pure sound
- Five-position switch
- Appropriately priced
- The verbatim should be improved
3. Epiphone G-310 Electric Guitar
The Epiphone G-310 is well known for its classic design. Moreover, the tone is outstanding with a sleek look. This guitar is ideal for beginners as well.
The body of this guitar is made of Alder wood, and it has a curved style of the 60s. Most importantly, it is lightweight, so it will not weigh you down when playing either for practice or during a session.
The neck of this guitar is made of mahogany, and the fret-board is made of rosewood. It has an open humbucker pickup that produces classic tones. Apart from that, it comes with lactone hardware that helps to lock thematic of the bridge. Also, it has a stop-bar on the tailpiece. Most importantly, it is made to last.
- It is lightweight
- Has a sleek design
- Ideal for beginners
- Trusted brand
- Humbucker pickups
- Packaging flaws
4. Ibanez RG450DX RG Series Starter Electric Guitar
Ibanez is a renowned Japanese company that produces quality guitars. This particular one is ideal for beginners. It is made of a mahogany body, the fret-board is made of rosewood, and the neck is made of maple.
The sound quality of this guitar is fantastic. Besides that, it is pretty looking, and you will be proud of carrying it around. The frets of this guitar are jumbo-sized, and the middle pickup is made of Quantums.
Both the neck and the body of the guitar have a vintage design and does not have a pointed end. It also comes with a Dyna-MIX 9 system whose primary work is to control the tone of the guitar. Also, it controls the nine pickup sounds.
This guitar is suitable for playing a variety of music genres. It is versatile in nature, and it has a great sound. It can be used to play a shred and jazz kind of music.
- Has an aesthetic appeal and eye-catching design
- Versatile tones
- The pickup is amazing
- It is lightweight so it will not weigh you down while playing it
- Easy to play hence ideal for beginners
- The performance is outstanding
- Does not have a case
5. Fender Johnny Marr Jaguar
Are you looking for a guitar with a classic design? This is the one for you. The bridge of this guitar is made stable, bigger, and the height is not adjustable, yet it sits comfortably on the bridge way.
The saddle of the guitar is placed at the center of the string groove. However, the width of the slot is big, so the gap between the outer edge of the fingerboard and low E is small. Besides that, it has only one circuit, tone controls, the volume is standard, and a four-lever switch.
It has a fantastic sound which is not only sweet but also bright. The tones can be adjusted to produce different sounds.
It is designed to fit left-handed players, and the fingerboards are close to the edge and higher in position. The four switches are used to adjust different things on the guitar such as pickup, bridge and neck, neck pickup, and neck and bridge pickups in that order. All these switches are comfortable, and you can switch from one pickup to the other easily.
- The tones are fantastic
- Has a four-way pick selector
- Comes with a vintage design
- Exceptional sound
- The vintage frets are not ideal for everyone
- It is very expensive
Frequently Asked Questions
The following are some of the FAQ about electric guitars:
1. Can I travel on a plane with an electric guitar?
We are not at a position to give a definite answer to this question at the moment. This is because the kind of luggage that can be carried on flight is determined by the policies and regulations of the individual flight. Besides that, there are some countries that have rules and regulations as to what can be accepted at their point of entry.
But generally speaking, there are some airline companies that allow lightweight guitars that can be carried as part of the hand luggage. Therefore, if you have a lightweight guitar and of the right size according to the airline rules, you can travel with it.
2. Are lightweight electric guitars worth the money?
Weight is one of the critical factors to consider when buying a guitar. That is why in most cases it is challenging to light a lightweight guitar. However, the weight of the guitar is not affected by the brand.
The weight of the guitar is determined by the type of guitar and the wood used in its construction. For instance, hollow and semi-hollow guitars are lighter as compared to their solid body counterparts. The difference is brought about by the fact that hollow guitars require less wood to make the guitar as compared to the solid wood kind.
But the construction of the guitar does not have any effect on the tone of the guitar. Therefore, the acoustic guitar does not have a better tone as compared to an electric guitar. The guitars that we have listed above are not only lightweight but also have a great tone as well. So, yes, lightweight electric guitars are a great choice to invest your money in when you are thinking of buying a lightweight electric guitar.
3. What affects the weight of the guitar?
The wood that is used in the construction of the guitar has a big influence on the weight of the guitar. For instance, rosewood, maple and mahogany are heavy as compared to other woods used in the construction of guitars. Woods such as spruce and cedar are lighther.
Besides that, the kind of wood used on the craft of the guitar will determine the weight of the guitar as compared to the wood used on the neck. This is because the craft is bigger as compared to the neck. So even if a heavy wood is used on the guitar as long as it does not occupy a large part, it will not add to any weight on the guitar.
4. How Do Electric Guitars Work?
An electric guitar is the most common musical instrument that has inspired numerous varieties of music genres. In this section, we will discuss how an electric guitar works to produce sound.
Generally speaking, an electric guitar has six strings, and these strings are tuned with the help of the tuner. Also, it has other vital parts, such as the neck and frets. As we already mentioned above, there are different kinds of guitar bodies. These are solid, hollow, and semi-hollow.
“The magnetic pickups produce the sound of the guitar, and the knob controls it. If you pluck the string of an electric guitar that is not connected to an electricity source, the sound will not be heard. The soundboard and the body amplify the vibrations of the string.”
For an electric guitar to produce sound, the vibrations of the strings are sensed electronically and then directed as an electrical signal to the speaker and amplifier. The sensing of the signal takes place via the magnetic pickup, which is located beneath the strings.
The magnetic bar is made of tiny wires that are wrapped around a magnetic bar. When the string vibrates, a corresponding vibration is produced on the magnetic bar’s magnetic field, which vibrates the coil.
The pickup coil then sends the signal picked via a circuit on the guitar. The tone of the guitar is adjusted by the resistor, while the capacitor acts as the filter. The primary role of the filter is to cut out higher frequencies. There is also a second resistor whose work is to control the volume or amplitude of the signal that is sent to the jack.
When the signal reaches the jack, it is sent to the amplifier and then to the speaker. The work of the amp is to transfer the signal from the string and make it audible by boosting the signal to be strong enough and amplifies via the speaker.
The primary function of the amp in an electric guitar is to produce sound as well as distortion. Distortion is brought about when the vibration signal is too high for the circuit of the guitar. In electric guitars, distortion is part of the desired sound. In most guitars, the amplifier is made in such a way that you can control the level of distortion that you want the guitar to produce.
If the sound that is produced between the amplifier and the speaker is loud enough, it can easily cause the guitar strings to start vibrating. Therefore, the production of distortion and the feedback from the loop between the guitar and the amp are crucial in the sound production in an electric guitar.
Thanks concludes are guide on the Best Lightweight Electric Guitars in 2020 that you can buy confidently. If you have experience with the guitars that we have not mentioned here and you think might be a good fit for the fellow guitarists, please feel free to comment below!