So you’re serious about the guitar you play. You want a killer sound and you’re willing to pay for it.

Well, that’s exactly why we put together this comprehensive list of the seven best high-end guitars. We’re talking around $3,000 and up per guitar.

Martin Retro Series HD-28E

Martin Retro Series HD-28E

Take the classic herringbone Dreadnought guitar, recreate it, and you’ve got the Martin Retro Series HD-28E. Think 1930a and ‘40s Martin guitars. That’s what this is, style-wise and sonically.

C. F. Martin & Co. combined the old with the new, like using the traditional no-cutaway design with the modern acoustic-electric technology. For inspiration, they looked at vintage, museum-worthy Martin guitars, like the 1942 D-45, 1941 D-28, 1937 D-18, and the 1934 000-28.

And they’ve made a guitar that appeals to both young and old guitarists.

Many of the people using this guitar say they love the feel of the high-performance neck, saying it gives the guitar's sound a little more umph. Its sound definitely cuts through to the front, even unplugged.

It’s difficult to find an issue with this guitar, although you could say not having a cutaway could be a downside, especially if you’re looking to shred up high.

Specifications and features:
  • Mahogany Blocks/Dovetail Neck Joint
  • Body Size: D-14 Fret
  • Solid Sitka Spruce top
  • Solid East Indian Rosewood back
  • Solid East Indian Rosewood sides
  • Select Hardwood neck
  • Neck Shape: Modified Low Oval Profile w/ Performing Artist Taper
  • Nut Material: Bone
  • Scale Length: 25.4''
  • Fingerboard Width at Nut: 1-3/4''

Patrick James Eggle Parlour Cuban

Most mahogany acoustic guitars have a warmer, even darker, tone. Not so with the Patrick James Eggle Parlour Cuban -- it’s bright and beautiful. And for such a humble and small guitar, it’s got a loud, bold sound.

It has a fairly even tone up and down the neck, which is not too common. Many guitars lose some of their sustain higher up on the neck, but this one seems to stay constant. And on top of all this, it’s a gorgeous looking guitar.

Specifications and features:
  • Honduras mahogany top, back, sides, and neck
  • Brazilian rosewood fingerboard
  • Nut Width: 44.5mm
  • Scale Length: 632mm

Martin D-18

Martin D-18

Remember when acoustic guitars ruled the land? Every great rock band used one in a lot of their songs. Well, now you can go back to that time with the Martin D-18 acoustic guitar. Back then, guitarists needed thick tone and a loud sound -- and that’s what the D-18 offers.

Its big, full, and beautiful sound pair great with its vintage look, giving you the classic Martin experience in a classic dreadnought-style body. Thanks to the forward-shifted bracing, the spruce top fully vibrates, emitting a warm and woody sound.

Most users are 100% happy with this guitar, although one downside some people have reported is that the neck is too thin or shallow. This can cause fatigue in your hand and possibly lead to muscle cramps. Although keep in mind that everyone has different sized hands.

Specifications and features:
  • Dreadnought 14-Fret, no-cutaway body
  • Solid Spruce top
  • Solid Mahogany back and sides
  • Hardwood neck, Ebony fingerboard and bridge
  • Scale Length: 25.4"
  • Nickel Tuners with Butterbean Knobs
  • Nut/Saddle Material: Bone
  • Nut Width: 1.75"

Martin D-28 Acoustic Guitar

martin d 28 guitar

Some say the Martin D-28 is a cut above its fellow acoustic guitars thanks to its wonderful tone. It’s rich. It’s warm. And it punches you right in the heart strings.

C. F. Martin & Co. created the first Dreadnought guitars back in 1916 for the Oliver Ditson brand. Ditson went out of business in 1930, but Martin used those first designs as inspiration for the D-28. So today, you can play a classic Martin guitar but with all the improvements they’ve made over the past near 100 years.

Users say this is a fun guitar to play, it feels great, and the tone is full and rich. There have been cases of the guitar feeling a bit stiff, but that is often due to using the wrong string gauge.

Specifications and features:
  • Sitka Spruce top
  • East Indian rosewood back and sides
  • Ebony fingerboard and bridge
  • Select hardwood neck with a satin finish
  • Nut width: 1.69" (43mm)
  • Scale length: 25.4"
  • Chrome-enclosed tuners

Gibson J-45 Standard

Gibson J-45 Standard

The Gibson J-45 Standard acoustic-electric guitar is often called The Workhorse -- it’s famous for its reliability and consistency. And there are good reasons that so many people rely on it for a top-notch acoustic guitar sound.

With this dreadnought guitar, you’ll get a full and balanced tone with warm bass and quite a bit of loudness. Thanks to the Sitka spruce top and solid mahogany body, you get that classic rich Martin sound. Plus, the durable wood that comprises the neck delivers enhanced clarity of each note.

And if you want to take this thing to the stage, you can trust the VTC acoustic pickup system, which will give you a full and energetic sound through any sound system.

Specifications and features:
  • Sitka Spruce top
  • Mahogany back, sides, and neck
  • Rosewood fingerboard and bridge
  • Scale Length: 24.75"
  • Nut/Saddle Material: Tusq
  • Nut Width: 1.725"
  • LR Baggs Element VTC pickup

Gibson J-45 Vintage

Gibson J-45 Vintage

Similar to yet very different from the J-45 Standard, the Gibson J-45 Vintage boasts a beefy tone, thanks to its Adirondack spruce top and mahogany back, sides, and neck.

I mean, if you have the chance to play a guitar that’s been in the hands of people like Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie, take it. Maybe it’s because of the unique tone, or maybe it’s because of the comfortable round-shoulder design. Whatever the case, expert guitarists love this instrument.

When it comes to dreadnought guitars, Martin usually has the competition beat. But Gibson’s J-45 Vintage guitar is a strong contender in this category.

Specifications and features:
  • Thermally Aged Adirondack Red Spruce top
  • Mahogany back, sides, and neck
  • Body Bracing: Traditional Hand Scalloped X-bracing with hide glue
  • Rosewood fingerboard and bridge
  • Scale Length: 24.75"
  • Gotoh Relic Aged Nickel tuners
  • Nut and saddle made of bone
  • Nut Width: 1.725"

Gibson Limited Edition 2018 Hummingbird Supreme Avant Garde Acoustic

Anything tagged “limited edition” from a big name like Gibson is bound to be high quality. And the Gibson Limited Edition 2018 Hummingbird Supreme Avant Garde Acoustic guitar is no exception.

Not only does it look pretty with its Sitka spruce top and sunburst design, but it also sounds pretty. It’s a square-shouldered cutaway guitar, meaning it’s comfortable and allows for high-neck playing.

Specifications and features:
  • Sitka spruce top
  • Rosewood back and sides
  • Nut width: 1.725 in. (43.8 mm)
  • Richlite fingerboard
  • Mahogany neck
  • East Indian rosewood bridge
  • Scale length: 24.75 in.
  • 2-band preamp EQ
  • Nickel Mini Grover tuners

Taylor 814CE Grand Auditorium

Taylor 814ce

Taylor is known for making pretty sounding guitars. And in that respect, they didn’t hold back with the 814ce acoustic guitar. Plus, the V-Class bracing makes it louder, increases the sustain, and improves the intonation. All of this makes the overall sound of the guitar more harmonious and robust.

Not only does this guitar sound beautiful, but it looks beautiful, thanks to a solid sitka spruce top and solid rosewood back and sides. And adding to the pizazz are the gold-plated Taylor tuners, making this one great looking instrument.

It's also one of the top selling high end acoustic guitars according to the sales reps at my local music store.

Specifications and features:
  • Sitka spruce top
  • Indian rosewood back and sides
  • V-Class bracing with Relief Rout
  • Mahogany neck with satin finish
  • Black graphite nut, Micarta saddle
  • Scale Length: 25.5"
  • Taylor nickel tuning machines