A Whole Lot of the Best – List of Best Electric Guitars

It is customary that a request for closed eyes be made before the text that weighs heavily on imagination is given, but I do not have that luxury. Instead I’ll ask you not to close your eyes but instead dedicate your ears to the hearing of what I am about to suggest. Have you ever felt a love so strong but so hopeless you could not express it by any means other than screaming, and even then it felt not enough? A rage so strong your body tightened so hard it felt like it was about to break? A fear so powerful all you could do is freeze in place? A melancholy so deep that even the raindrops on your head or on the car window could barely reach down into the put? An emotion so strong it made you convulse in pain? You must then know how hard it is to be unable to produce a voice or a sound to reflect it. We all do. It is entirely human to feel it and to want to express and the only way I have found to express it is a guitar. And only the best electric guitar is capable of such expression. What else could describe the desperate ambiguity of human existence than the soul crushing whines of a well tuned, well played, electric guitar.

Top 10 Best Electric Guitars – All Categories

#ImageGuitar Model
Rating
Check Price
1Fender Jimi Hendrix Stratocaster4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)Check on Amazon
2
Schecter Hellraiser C-7 FR4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)Check on Amazon
3ESP LTD Deluxe EC-1000VB4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)Check on Amazon
4Epiphone G-400 Pro4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)Check on Amazon
5Gretsch G5230T Electromatic Jet FT4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)Check on Amazon
6Gretsch G5425 Electromatic Jet Club Electric Guitar4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)Check on Amazon
7Squier by Fender Deluxe Stratocaster4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)Check on Amazon
8Jackson JS22 Dinky4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)Check on Amazon
9Epiphone Slash “AFD” Les Paul4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)Check on Amazon
10Godin Montreal Premiere TriplePlay4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)Check on Amazon

Electric Guitars for Beginners

Squier by Fender Contemporary Stratocaster HSS

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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What could be a better beginner guitar than Squier By Fender Contemporary Stratocaster HSS? Though advanced players will benefit from its qualities and will definitely fall in love with its features, it’s simplicity is perfect for novices. Its thin c-shaped mahogany neck is convenient to hold, and thus, easy to play. Narrow and tall frets make it easier to hold down the strings and fix your fingers on specific chords or positions. Moreover, it has Ceramic Zebra bridge humbucker, which accentuates the low-end and adds extra richness to their sound. Ceramic single-coil middle and neck pickups, on the other hand, add clarity to your tone and produce transparent, yet crisp sound. Contemporary Stratocaster HSS has a 6-saddle synchronized tremolo bridge, which creates sustain and vibrant actions for tremolo. Though painted headstock doesn’t match everyone’s taste, to me it looks different and eye-pleasing. I’m sure by now you can see yourself just how many virtues this fella has. Contemporary Stratocaster HSS is truly a wonderful option for beginners and advanced players alike.

Pros:

  • Smooth fretboard
  • Easy to play
  • Excellent sound

Cons:

  • Bridge might have a rough part which can break your high E string

Yamaha Gigmaker EG

Build Quality:4.8 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.7 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.8 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Yamaha Gigmaker EG

The Yamaha Gigmaker EG is the best friend to any beginner solo or rhythm guitar player that started their garage band after their 4th guitar class. I am not saying it is a bad thing, in actuality, I did the same thing when I started out. What I am saying is that this guitar will be your best friend. It often comes as part of a pack deal, where you also get your hands on a travel pack, and amplifier, extra strings and some other goodies that you will find useful on your road to neighborhood and town battle of the band’s success. The body of this guitar is solid spruce, with a rosewood fretboard. This makes it lightweight and easy to play or carry. The sound on this guitar is solid but not out of this world. Combined with the awesome pack that it might come as a part of and you have yourself one of the best affordable electric guitars on this list.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Beginner Friendly
  • Bundle

Cons:

  • Agathis Body
  • Nothing but the basics
  • String Buzz
  • Tuning Stability Issues

Epiphone Slash “AFD” Les Paul

Build Quality:4.8 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.8 out of 5 stars
Value:4.8 out of 5 stars
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Epiphone Slash “AFD” Les Paul

Epiphone thought of the best way to dash through all those pesky songs and rhythms you’ve wanted to play for so long without having to drop more of your money than you would on a day at six flags. They created the Epiphone Slash “AFD” Les Paul that combines the outstanding look of the Les Paul guitars with the piercing potential that Slash put into this guitar as he designed it. Yes, Slash of guns’n’roses, the legendary, top hat wearing, soul stealing, ear bursting solo man Slash. Yes while designing the guitar the guitar god kept in mind what we all wanted to do – play like Slash. So he made it easier for chumps like me to achieve the expressive sound that he produces by installing two Open Coil Humbuckers onto the guitar. Pick it up and play it and immediately you will feel like the only thing stopping you from sweet child of mine is your own stubborn need to play welcome to the jungle first.

Pros:

  • Looks like Slash’s Les Paul
  • Affordable
  • Comes with a Bundle

Cons:

  • Underwhelming humbuckers
  • String buzz
  • Tuning Stability Issues

Cheap Electric Guitars

ESP Viper-10 Electric Guitar with Gig Bag

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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It’s really easy to think that an affordable electric guitar won’t sound good. Such a stereotype has been lingering for a long time, but it has proven to be wrong countless times. In the modern world, almost anything is possible, including putting together a killer electric guitar while still maintaining a smaller price tag. ESP LTD Viper-10 will convince you that quality and money aren’t always proportionate. This fella sounds and feels way more expensive than it actually is. It looks edgy – it has double cutaways and black body. Surely, it will lure many beginners and a professional or two. Typically, it features a basswood body and a maple neck. Double LH-100 humbuckers are responsible for the frightening power this puppy can yield. They offer a perfect balance between booming lows and brightening highs. Viper-10 is really easy to play, which is why it’s a perfect match for novices. Oh, and one more thing – it comes with a gig bag! Let’s agree that this pack is a real steal, don’t you think so?

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Smooth and easy to play
  • Powerful sound

Cons:

  • Sharp, edgy endings on the frets

Jackson JS22 Dinky

Build Quality:4.8 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.7 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.7 out of 5 stars
Value:4.8 out of 5 stars
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Jackson JS22 Dinky

The funny name of this Dinky comes packaged with an almost funny price, meaning that you will only be laughing only until you start playing, when you will realize how good the guitar sounds, especially for its sound. The JS22 Dinky is one of the best electric guitar for beginners available on the market. Combining cheap price with a quality make and good sound, the versatility of the guitar and its two humbuckers make sure that you will be able to travel through genres like a knife through butter. Your country might sound a little harsher than the average country musicians, but it will retain musical integrity. The basswood body and the rosewood fretboard of the guitar are comfortable and lightweight, meaning endless practice hours will never feel painful. As for the fun – well how could you not have all of it with a name like this, so go ahead and make the right decision for any beginner.

Pros:

  • Good Sound
  • Affordable
  • Beginner Friendly

Cons:

  • Tuning Stability Issues

Squier by Fender Affinity Series Telecaster

Build Quality:4.7 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.6 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.7 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.7 out of 5 stars
Value:4.7 out of 5 stars
Average:4.7 out of 5 stars

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I, personally, have always been a huge admirer of Fender and their Telecaster. Back when I had no idea how to play, I used to read the origins of various instruments. This one stood out from the crowd and always inspired me in a different way. But once I started playing, it became my dream to purchase the best Telecaster that exists. I knew I’d have to satisfy myself with something else before I’d have enough money and skills to reach for the high-end stuff. That’s when I fell in love with Squier Affinity Series Telecaster. Though this model isn’t the exact replica of the one I aspired to my whole life, it does come really close. Its body is made out of poplar, while the neck is built with maple. The neck is a bit thin, which makes it perfect for everyone with smaller hands. This does also mean that people with bigger hands might find it a bit difficult to play, but I’m sure you’ll find your way around it. Squier Affinity Series Telecaster features two single-coil pickups at the bridge and neck. You can switch between them with the help of a toggle (neck, neck + bridge, bridge). Can’t you see? This fella has it all!  

Pros:

  • Good value for money
  • Authentic Telecaster sound
  • Wonderful build quality for the price

Cons:

  • You’ll have to set it up in the beginning
  • Sharp edges on the frets

Under 300

Epiphone Les Paul-100

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Epiphone Les Paul-100

When I say “Les” you say “Paul”! Les!.. Ok don’t make me wait so long. Don’t make the Epiphone Les Paul-100 wait either. This guitar is way too iconic and way too much of a pop culture iconic on its own for you to keep ignoring it. I mean, look at it. At its handsome face and a body you can’t tear your eyes away from. The long fretboard that simply beckons to you, asks you to play it just right. Listen to its song, its beckoning tones and it’s sweet, sweet sound. Yes, now you understand why the entirety of the world went crazy for this guitar in one day. Well not this one specifically, saying so would be an insult to the inventor Les Paul, but this guitar has everything this man valued in his guitars. The body is made of standard basswood, with the fretboard being, just like so many others, rosewood. The pickups are the ever sustained humbuckers for the little bit of “umph” we all love in our sound. The style is unique.

Pros:

  • Les Paul Design
  • Powerful Sound
  • Cheap
  • Good Tuning Stability

Cons:

  • Non Satisfactory Tonality
  • String buzz
  • Very basic pickups

Gretsch G5425 Electromatic Jet Club Electric Guitar

Build Quality:4.8 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.8 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars

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Sometimes you’ll encounter such an amazing guitar at a really low cost that you’ll start wondering, if it’s real or not. Gretsch Electromatic G5425 Jet Club showcases that perfectly. As you start exploring its features and specs, you notice that the available package is more than decent. In fact, it turns out to be one of the best things you can get your hands on. Of course, the hardware isn’t high-end, which stands to reason. However, everything that’s included performs so well that you’ll forget about pricey rivals. G5425 Jet Club has a classic chambered basswood body with a single cutaway. It’s extremely lightweight, which makes it really easy to hold. Therefore, it’s an amazing fit for beginners, however, its professional specs can satisfy the needs of advanced players as well. This bad boy has two humbuckers on the neck and bridge. Consequently, there’s a toggle switch that enables you to use one, or the other, or both of them together. These pickups are way better than you’d expect for the price. All in all, G5425 Jet Club is one of the best electric guitars in its price range and with some modifications, it could easily battle with its expensive rivals.

Pros:

  • Wonderful pickups
  • Stays in tune for a long time
  • Beautiful sound

Cons:

  • Chambered body (just in case that’s a con for you)

Squier by Fender Deluxe Stratocaster

Build Quality:4.7 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.7 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.8 out of 5 stars
Value:4.8 out of 5 stars
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Squier by Fender Deluxe Stratocaster

The stratocaster has been around the world as many times as any rockstar has hoped to be seen. It has been held by more hopefuls and more fans than there have been songs written and still, after so many years of fame and fortune, the strat remains as popular as ever. Which is why you are fortunate – the Squier by Fender Deluxe Stratocaster is an awesome piece of equipment that gives you everything you wanted as a starry eyed teenager for a price that makes sense to a starry eyed teenager. This squier holds dear everything you do – the unique, iconic style, the beautiful sound and the comfort of playing. Combine all of this together, accidentally add chemical “cheap” and you get one of the best affordable electric guitars on the market.

Pros:

  • Clean Sound
  • Understated, Classy design
  • Decent tuning stability

Cons:

  • Dents Easily
  • Moderately Powerful Sound

Under 500

Epiphone G-400 Pro

Build Quality:4.8 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Epiphone G-400 Pro

You never wanted a guitar. No metalhead ever does. What you always wanted was an axe, a weapon of mass destruction, a tool to slay through the hordes of your own personal demons, and others, with sonic speed and cruel sustain. This is why you went on a quest looking for the best electric guitar for metal. This is why you came upon this scroll, this list, this dictionary of artifacts. It was not a simple coincidence, it was destiny. Destiny that lead you to find the Epiphone G-400 Pro, the most axe like musical instrument you, or I, have ever seen in our long, metal filled, battlefield ridden lives. The mahogany body of this guitar is shaped like a battle axe, for maximum metal, while the rosewood fretboard feels like the most comfortable handle in the world. The humbuckers announce to the world the strength of your swing and the danger of your song. So go ahead and grab this (affordable) bomb of a guitar and keep slaying, for me and you.

Pros:

  • Interesting Design
  • Great Sound
  • Affordable

Cons:

  • A little heavy

Gretsch G5230T Electromatic Jet FT

Build Quality:4.8 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.7 out of 5 stars
Value:4.8 out of 5 stars
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars

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And we’re back to Gretsch. This brand happens to fit every price range and it does so with jaw-dropping success. Sometimes they walk on earth, while other times they fly high with their jets. Yeah, you guessed it, I’m talking about their G5230T Electromatic Jet FT. It captures the tradition behind Gretsch and showcases all the beautiful virtues the company owns. It has a chambered mahogany body with a single cutaway, maple top and a mahogany neck. The pickups are amazing once again – Black Top Filter’Trons on the neck and bridge. They are capable of producing clear and transparent sound and can emit low and high frequencies equally well. Mid-range doesn’t suffer either, which means the tone is pretty fascinating here. Individual volume controls (as well as Master Volume and Master Tone) for the pickups are great additions to the already beautiful package. G5230T Jet FT is lightweight and easy to hold, which turns the playing process into an enjoyable journey. Gretsch has done an amazing job this time too.  

Pros:

  • Decent build quality
  • Eye-pleasing color selection
  • Amazing pickups

Cons:

  • Could have had better tuners
  • Not perfectly stable

Fender Duo-Sonic HS

Build Quality:4.8 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.7 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.8 out of 5 stars
Value:4.7 out of 5 stars
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars

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We have yet another guitar that performs way better than one would expect. Fender is usually associated with high-quality instruments (of course they have their failures), and Duo-Sonic HS is probably one of the most surprising and inspiring electric guitars from their collection. It’s so good that you won’t believe your eyes when you unbox the package and plug it in for the first time. I won’t be exaggerating if I say that its sound could easily compete with that of high-end models that cost twice or three times as much. Its 24” scale might be a bit shorter, yet it doesn’t affect the sonic outcome to any degree. Those who prefer larger scale might not fall in love with this one, but trust me, this fella is worth the sacrifice. It has a Duo-Sonic single-coil neck pickup and Duo-Sonic humbucker on the bridge. You’ll see a coil-splitting feature here, as well, which adds even more versatility to the sound. The pickguard will make sure you don’t damage the body of your guitar with your nails or picks, while the double cutaway design will give you access even to the furthest frets. I can’t even articulate just how wonderful this puppy is!

Pros:

  • Virtually faultless
  • Rich and well-defined sound
  • Could rival with more expensive models

Cons:

  • The single-coil pickup is significantly quieter than humbucker

Under 1000

Fender Jimi Hendrix Stratocaster

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.9 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.9 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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Jimi Hendrix’s legacy will never be forgotten. His impact on music and instruments was so great that I don’t think he’ll ever disappear from the headlights. And let’s face it, he deserves every bit of it. The peculiarity of its character is what turned him into such a unique and distinctive guitarist – someone we all look up to (regardless of our musical taste). His jaw-dropping music was the result of his craftsmanship but also his gear. And since we all want to replicate that, Fender has produced Jimi Hendrix Stratocaster. Since Jimi used to flip over right-handed guitars and play them upside down, this bad boy features a reversed headstock. The neck plate has engraved “Authentic Hendrix” writing and silhouette, which will notify everyone that this guitar has something to do with Hendrix. Moreover, this Stratocaster has three Pure Vintage ’65 Gray-Bottom Single-Coil Strat® pickups, which are placed in reverse to further enhance the authenticity of Hendrix’s tone. You might get the idea that you’re paying for the name here, but trust me, this one is worth every penny. After all, it would still be a mesmerizing model if it had nothing to do with Hendrix (but it wouldn’t be so unique).

Pros:

  • Wonderful build quality
  • Impressive tone
  • Steeped with Hendrix’s character

Cons:

  • Some issues with tuning stability

Schecter Hellraiser C-1

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.8 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Schecter Hellraiser C-1

Beautiful and powerful isn’t it? Well, don’t stare at it. Move on. Schecter Hellraiser is too much. Too much of a challenge and too much fun packed into one mahogany body. So move on, because you are not ready. You are not ready to bear the responsibility of raising the demons from the underworld with the heavy metal that the strings and lips of this guitar produce. It is too much power for one so unwilling to tame it. After all how could you stand ahead of the demons pouring out of this guitar’s humbuckers, how could you attempt to bend them to your will and send them into the wild to fulfill your bidding, if you are unwilling to yourself commit to the art of metal. If I am wrong and you are willing to prove me wrong then this is the best electric guitar under 800 to do so with. Go ahead, get it, and make me tremble, wherever across the globe I am, in anticipation of the chaos you are going to summon using this magical instrument.

Pros:

  • Great Sound
  • Awesome Look

Cons:

  • Heavy

ESP LTD Deluxe EC-1000VB

Build Quality:4.8 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.8 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.8 out of 5 stars

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Have you ever looked at the guitar and thought to yourself – this is the one? Well, I’ve had that experience quite a lot throughout my life and it was determined by different factors each time. Sometimes it was the design, other times I noticed certain features that kept me intrigued. Regardless, that feeling has never failed me. ESP LTD Deluxe EC-1000VB is so attractive that you’ll start navigating towards its body right away. It will cast an enchanting spell on you and you’ll never be able to let go. Its vintage black body, old details and binding will surely capture your heart. It has a mahogany body, 3pc mahogany neck, as well as Macassar ebony fingerboard. EC-1000VB comes with active EMG pickups (60 on the neck and 81 on the bridge). They open up your sound and give way to heavier genres. They aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, which is perfectly normal in my opinion. You can always listen to the sound and see if it fits your taste and preferences. On the whole, this fella is really hard to beat!

Pros:

  • High-quality hardware
  • Fancy design
  • Includes LTD locking tuners

Cons:

  • You won’t like it if you’re not into EMG active pickups

7 String

Schecter Hellraiser C-7 FR

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.9 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.9 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Schecter Hellraiser C-7 FR

I would advise all those inexperience with raising hell to be careful when playing Schecter Hellraiser C-7 FR. You see, the hellraiser series guitars have a very specific purpose – to raise hell, and while all of them succeed at doing so with ease, none of them are capable of producing a sound as violent and strong as this one. The 7th string allows direct connection to the source of all violence, violently raising the emotions of those who listen to it being played. The result is that no matter what kind of music you play, the listener will always be moved to express their emotion to the fullest. Be it crying, dancing, jumping or moshing, the extra string will allow you, the musician, to produce chaos in unison with your listener. So be ready to play hard and fast, so that the sonic boom has the instantaneous effect on the audience that you so much desire.

Pros:

  • Great Value
  • Awesome Pickups
  • Locking Nut

Cons:

  • Lots of broken strings
  • Heavy

Epiphone Matt Heafy signature Les Paul Custom 7 String

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.9 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.9 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Epiphone Matt Heafy signature Les Paul Custom 7 String

Ahh, the tuxedo guitar. The guitar that special agent James Bond would play if he knew how to do, and blow the mind of any listener he deemed worthy. The guitar that looks so fresh on its own the owner must keep up to it, otherwise risk being outshone by the instrument itself. The guitar that sounds so good you will do a double take to make sure that the instrument you are playing is real. It sports a beautiful, custom tinted (black or white) mahogany body shaped in the classical, recognizable and iconic Les Paul design. The humbuckers placed on the neck and bridge of the guitar produce a hypnotic sound, one that will result in the audience being unable to tear away their eyes or minds from you. Epiphone Matt Heafy Signiture Les Paul is a danger to everyone around it and to itself, it is just that good.

Pros:

  • Great Bass Response
  • Active Pickups
  • Lovely Les Paul shape

Cons:

  • Plastic Nut
  • On the Heavy Side

Sterling by Music Man JP157 John Petrucci Signature

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.8 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Sterling by Music Man JP157 John Petrucci Signature

We all have hopes, aspirations and dreams. Some of us aspire to be great men who create legacies that will stick in the history of the world. Others hope to achieve fame and leave behind pieces of their soul within their art for future generations to find. Still more hope that some day they will get to create their own guitars. John Petrucci is one of the few people who has achieved these ambitions. As the founding and lasting member of the legendary metal band dream theater he has created music that has affected and will still affect people around the world. He has written his name in the sustain heavy tones of his guitar and after doing so, he also got to put his name in a guitar of his own. The Sterling by Music Man JP157 John Petrucci Signature is a great musical instrument with the ability to produce sound that, just like dream theater, is harrowing and energetic. This handsome musical instrument is made of african mahogany and rosewood, with a double humbucking configuration for all your metal needs.

Pros:

  • Good Pickups
  • Detailed Sound
  • Relatively Affordable

Cons:

  • Possible Neck Stability Issues
  • Bolt on neck
  • Need a better nut

8 String

Schecter 1925 Hellraiser Hybrid C-8

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.9 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.9 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.8 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Schecter 1925 Hellraiser Hybrid C-8

This high end, high skill level, high string count guitar is no simple hellraiser. While the guitars in the series, including the 7 stringer hellraiser, are all exceptional in their quality, the greed, ambition and the pride of the fans of the hellraiser series summoned a creature of special quality. The Schecter 1925 Hellraiser Hybrid C-8 bares all of its teeth the moment you first strike a chord on it. The humbuckers on this guitar are heavy with sustain and heavier still on impact to the ears, sending shivers down the bodies of anyone brave enough to remain still while this guitar plays. The 8 strings give it the versatility undreamed by those playing 6 or 7 strings, going so low or so high in tone you might feel slightly indecent doing it. The guitar can growl like a demon from the deepest pits and scream like a soul in the hottest pots. No wonder it is part of the hellraiser series, it can raise the temperature at a concert in an instant, and the hair on the backs of anyone at it in a second. It is chaos contained in an instrument, and it is a tool to both release this chaos and tame it.

Pros:

  • Amazing Sound
  • Great Lifespan
  • Awesome Look
  • Great Output

Cons:

  • Expensive

ESP LTD SC-608 Baritone Signature Series Stephen Carpenter

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.9 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.9 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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Signature models always deserve some level of controversy. Some consider them as overpriced units, while others think that they are worth every penny. I would probably say that it depends on the particular piece of gear we’re talking about. Both of these views can be true in specific cases, yet I still think that signature models always have that extra character and high level of uniqueness. ESP LTD SC-608 is just like that. It’s part of Stephen Carpenter signature series and features everything we could ever ask for. The updated version comes in red-sparkle finish, which immediately awakens positive feelings towards the guitar. But once you take a closer look and examine the specs carefully, you discover that this bad boy has a lot to offer. This 8-string electric has a mahogany body, 3pc maple neck and Macassar Ebony fingerboard. More importantly, it has two active pickups: Fishman Fluence SRC Signature on the bridge and in the middle. Both of them can be transformed into passive ones by push-pull switch on the volume knob. Though it’s nitpicking, you might miss the neck pickup, but that’s unlikely. SC-608 is a high quality electric guitar that has vibrant and lively sound.

Pros:

  • Stunning design
  • Great build quality
  • High quality pickups

Cons:

  • Doesn’t have neck pickup

Washburn PXM18EB Parallaxe PXM Series

Build Quality:4.7 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.7 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.8 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.8 out of 5 stars
Value:4.7 out of 5 stars
Average:4.7 out of 5 stars

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If you want to become a real rockstar, you definitely need to have suitable gear. You need to own a guitar that screams with ethereal sustain and earth-shattering drive. In order to find a perfect one, you definitely need to turn to the brands that dedicate their passion to rock and metal music. Washburn has proved that it hasn’t forgotten its gnarly legacy with their Parallaxe line. PXM18EB is one of a kind for this little sub-brand, as you won’t find any 8-string guitars in the rest of the line. It has characteristics that are worth the effort, as the final outcome is awe-inspiring. This monster has a double cutaway alder body, which means you get access to the whole fretboard without any trouble. Though it’s hard to nail tuning and intonation (similar to the majority of 27” scale 8-string guitars), once you do, you will be spared for a long time. The tuning stability is wonderful here, and intonation seems to be well-balanced throughout the whole thing. 5pc mahogany neck has rounded edges, which makes it even easier to play. Generally, PXM18EB is a complete treat to play, regardless of the 8 strings. Trust me, you won’t have problems with this one!

Pros:

  • Rather easy to play (for an 8-string guitar)
  • Comfortable to perform or practice with
  • Wonderful tuning stability

Cons:

  • Tuning and finding intonation might be a bit difficult due to the scale length

Hollow Body Guitars

Godin Montreal Premiere TriplePlay

Build Quality:5 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.9 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.9 out of 5 stars
Sound:5 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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It’s impossible not to fall in love with a hollow-body electric guitar. Not only do they look like the best replication of antique artwork, but they also sound so different and, simply, beautiful. I can’t imagine anyone listening to these bad boys and feeling nothing – to me, that sounds impossible. My appreciation towards hollow bodies intensifies even more when I encounter the pieces, such as Godin Montreal Premiere TriplePlay. It features canadian wild cherry body and top, mahogany neck and rosewood fingerboard. The color is sunburst, which suits the style of the guitar perfectly. As indicated by the name, we’re dealing with a premiere quality axe. It integrates Fishman Custom Triplay technology, which opens up diverse opportunities for you and turns this guitar into a versatile beast. If you know nothing about this technology, let me tell you that it’s capable of ethereal things – it combines an onboard wireless transmitter and a USB receiver that you can connect to your computer. This way you’re left with 6 signals that are emitted via your Custom Godin humbucking pickups. Premiere TriplePlay is definitely for those players who aren’t afraid of anything! 

Pros:

  • Amazing sound
  • Innovative technology 
  • Versatile options

Cons:

  • There’s no switch for the synth (except for the Volume knob)

Guild Starfire V with Guild Vibrato Tailpiece

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.9 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.9 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.8 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Guild Starfire V with Guild Vibrato Tailpiece

The comet that falls in the middle of the night, illuminating the sky with its fiery tail, as if a star burning up in the atmosphere of our planet, but only a passing visage of a body traveling through the endless. It is not fair to compare such beauty to the Guild Starfire V with Guild Vibrato Tailpiece. Because sometimes even the marvels of the world fail in front of the makings of man. I joke of course, there are few things as beautiful as a passing comet, but this guitar could, maybe, in some twisted world similar to the one I live in (in my head) compare. Or maybe the song played using the vibrant or, if wanted, solemn tones on this guitar could serve as a comparable beauty? After all a guitar is only the sound it produces. So maybe, just maybe, the comparison between a comet and this guitar is just what needs to be made. After all the laminated mahogany with its subtle warmth and the two humbuckers with their impeccable sound reproduction bring this guitar into the world of exceptional things to see, hear and have.

Pros:

  • Clear sound
  • Highly individualized pickup controls
  • Design to fall in love with

Cons:

  • Pricy

Gretsch G5422TDCG Electromatic

Build Quality:4.9 out of 5 stars
Hardware:4.9 out of 5 stars
Electronics:4.9 out of 5 stars
Sound:4.9 out of 5 stars
Value:4.9 out of 5 stars
Average:4.9 out of 5 stars

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Full Review

Gretsch G5422TDCG Electromatic

Can you see yourself in a roofless Cadillac riding through the desert during a time when there were no cars, only horses? Can you see the dust behind you stirred up by your wheels? Can you feel the hot wind beating in your face as you get away from the wild west sheriff? Then you can also hear the Gretsch G5422TDCG Electromatic playing the soundtrack to your escape. This guitar is what I would call versatile, for its ability to be the source of bottomless cool, a reflection of sensitivity and just a little bit of mischievous. Thanks to the 5 ply maple body and the two humbuckers gracing it, this guitar sounds vibrant and strong, while remaining subtle and malleable, the perfect representation of versatility in a hollow body guitar. It will play anything you want, for as long as you want, however you want. Just be careful. I can confirm nor deny that playing it just right might cause you to end up accidentally riding into the sunset, dust settling slowly behind you.

Pros:

  • Great High Tones
  • Great Tuning Stability
  • Lovely White Design

Cons:

  • No pickup switch
  • Maple Overkill

Perfection in the Details

What is it that makes an electric guitar the best? Well, many things. You see, every guitar has an anatomy to it, little details that make it perfect for one thing or another. These slight differences are what make a guitar perfect for you. Such details range from how the guitar is built and its electronics all the way to its price. The history of a guitar, how it was made, who played it, why it became famous. Maybe it just has a long history of “cool” associated with it. The look of the guitar plays a big role in why it could be perfect, after all a guitar after your own soul is what you are looking for, right? And finally, the price. Not everybody can, or wants to, afford the best electric guitar for 1000. Some of us are fine with playing a guitar that is just under 500 but is perfect for them. So, if you want to choose right instrument from the list above, why don’t you take a look at some of the details I talk more about below.

The History

The electric guitar has a long history of being used. Glossing over its creation for the orchestra play, or its use as part of the jazz, blues and so many other genres, we come into the time when the instrument found its actual place: Rock and Roll. The electric guitar is, of course, not limited to this genre, ever. Any single musical genre may end up using the instrument. But if you are like me, you like to imagine yourself standing, guitar in hand, as a rock star on a stage, with men and women fainting to the sounds you create.

Thing is even if all electric guitars share some sort of history, each guitar also has its own little chapter in it. Most of the best electric guitars have been about for more than a minute and some of them have a history of being famous. There are times when this becomes a decisive feature for a fan buying a guitar. I mean what’s better than owning the same guitar that your favorite song was written on? It might not be the very same, but it still remains the guitar that was played by someone you admire, someone you want to be like. Or maybe the guitar was made in your hometown? Or maybe there is some other story about the guitar you enjoy? Whatever it is, if you see one that has a a tale you like, maybe that makes the guitar perfect for you?

The Little Details

Then again, the history of the instrument cannot be the only thing that makes you want it, right? I mean, the guitar is built of things and the better the guitar is, the more likely it is to be made for a very specific purpose.

When buying an electric guitar remember to check what you are buying for here is a quick checklist of questions to ask yourself:

  • Are you going to be playing a genre that leans more on sustain or would you be playing something that sounds cleaner?
    • If the answer is heavy – consider buying a guitar with humbucker pickups.
    • If the answer is clean – consider buying a single coil pickup guitar.
  • What type of material do you want? There are several options for the body, and all of them have a slight effect on the sound of the guitar, as well as price.
    • Do you want natural woods? If yes, you guitar might end up a little more expensive if you go for some of the more expensive woods, but it might also end up with a better tonality, as well as being slightly on the heavy side.
    • Do you want synthetic materials? This might end up being a cheaper option, but might also result in a slightly inferior tone. Though the guitar may be on the light side if you pick this option
  • Do you want fully electric, semi-hollow body, or hollow body?
    • Fully electric has no acoustic sound, is better fitting for heavy sustain and does not suffer from feedback.
    • Semi-Hollow Body guitars combine the qualities of acoustic and electric guitars, where both worlds remain in harmony. While sometimes suffering from feedback, these guitars are some of the most versatile instruments, capable of both sustain and clean sound.
    • Hollow-Body, or otherwise known as acoustic electric guitars, are the original electric guitars. These suffer from feedback the most, but also have the full capabilities of an acoustic guitar. They are unable to perform with sustain as well as the other two, because of feedback, and are usually bought for their ability to amplify clean sound without the need for a mic.
  • Are you looking for a specific design? There are some iconic designs on the list that you might find fitting for your instrument, or you might be looking for something unique. Either way, in the world of the best electric guitars you will end up finding something you find attractive.

Thing is, no matter what your specification are, the only perfect or best electric guitar is the one you find to be the best for you. So go over this list many times before you actually choose. So that in the end your guitar reflects who you are.

Conclusion

If you have ever wondered what despair sounds like, take a gander at the now critically acclaimed but once a critically failed song, Since I’ve Been Loving You by the good, old Led Zeppelin. Some of you might actually hate them and that is perfectly natural. I do have one question for you: how can you deny Jimmy Page’s almost indecent ability to make the guitar cry the tears of true, stretched, heavy emotion? Now, I might be biased, but I feel like every note in this song is dedicated to making you feel the harrowing nature of a love so strong and insane that it cannot be requited the same way. I might be subjective in this case, judging by how I Love Zeppelin, but I cannot help but feel Jimmy Page pulling at the strings of my heart as I listen to his guitar. Proof, once more, that there are few instruments in the world, that are any better than the guitar at making you feel the heavy, almost unbearable, part of what makes us so human.

Even the best musicians require the best electric guitars to play our emotions right. Which is why this list was made – there is nothing more in the world that I’d like than to have another one of you darn musicians play with my feelings. Maybe, one day, when I break up with my next girlfriend, I’ll be listening to your song instead of Since I’ve Been Loving You. Or maybe I’ll be listening to it when I fall in love again. Whichever it is, I hope I helped you find whatever you were looking for.

Good Luck!

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