Best Electric Guitars

All the best electric guitars in one place, including guides to the best Epiphone and Fender models, as well as advice on beginner guitars and guitars for metal and doom…

With over 30 years of combined playing experience, our team of reviewers has been playing live, recording, and using guitars since the mid-1990s. This page brings together all of our experience and insight into the best electric guitars money can buy – across all budgets – in 2021 and beyond.

Click here to read our pick of the best guitars from 2022 – we have included options across all budgets too.

Below, you’ll find detailed guides on the best guitar for beginners, the best guitars for metal, the best Fender guitars for metal, the best Epiphone Les Paul models, and the best models for players on a stricter budget. Basically, if you’re new to guitar it covers all the bases.

Best Guitar 2022

The Best Gibson Les Paul Alternative
Epiphone Les Paul Prophecy

With its Fishman Fluence humbuckers, iconic design, and amazing specs and components, the Epiphone Les Paul Prophecy is easily the best Gibson Les Paul on the market right now. In fact, I think I’d still take one of these over a proper Gibson Les Paul. It is that good…

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PRS SE Silver Sky

The 22-fret, 25.5” scale length neck includes the original 635JM carve profile and an 8.5” fretboard radius. Its sound is driven by a trio of single-coil 635JM “S” pickups, with master volume and two tone controls, and a five-way pickup switch. Other Features include the PRS Silver Sky inverted headstock shape, PRS double-acting truss rod, two-point steel tremolo, synthetic bone nut and vintage-style tuners. Comes with a gig bag.

Squier Contemporary Telecaster RH

The Squier Contemporary Telecaster RH brings modern features and bold aesthetics to an iconic Fender platform to satisfy today’s most discerning and daring players. At the heart of this guitar is a SQR rail humbucking bridge pickup and a Squier SQR Atomic humbucking neck pickup. This guitar is primed for shredding, and is well worth the budget price!

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Squier Classic Vibe 60's Stratocaster

The Squier Classic Vibe ’60s Stratocaster is a tribute to the 1960s evolution of the Strat. It creates great tone from of a trio of Fender-Designed, single-coil alnico pickups. Player-friendly features include a Slim “C”-shaped neck with a comfy 9.5”-radius fingerboard and narrow-tall frets. The vintage-style tremolo system offers expressive string bending effects. This throwback Squier also features 1960s-inspired headstock markings, stylish nickel-plated hardware and a neck with a slick vintage-tint gloss finish for an old-school vibe.

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Squier 40th Anniversary Telecaster

Squier celebrates 40 years of affordable guitars in serious style! The Telecaster is known for its versatility, and this one has everything a classic Tele should have!  Featuring an Anodized Gold Aluminum Pickguard, bound fretboard, pearl square inlays, and Alnico V pickups. Own the stage with this beautiful monster!

Schecter Van Nuys

The PT Van Nuys from Schecter is a lean, mean rock ‘n’ roll machine with its own modern twist. Equipped with a calibrated Schecter USA SuperRock Vintage pickup set, the PT Van Nuys delivers a sweet mix of definition and power for a range of tones from rich and brilliant to overdrive with a little more bite.This Schecter Custom Shop Quality on a budget!

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Vai Approved!
Ibanez Jem JR

The Ibanez Jem JR is a budget rendition of the famous Steve Vai signature guitar, first created in 1987. It has all of the features you need to start shredding, at an unbeatable price!

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Fender Stratocaster HSS

The Fender HSS Strat is a great guitar for anyone that is looking for versatility. The 5 way switch allows you to go through pristine cleans, to blistering solos.

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Best Guitar Guides

Best Guitars For Metal

If you’re looking for an electric guitar to play metal with, these are currently our top picks for the best guitars for metal in 2021 and beyond, including premium, mid-range, and affordable options…

Best Guitars For Beginners

Choosing the right guitar when you’re just starting out is super important – it’s not just about price. There are so many options, so how do you choose the best one for your exact needs and budgets? In our guide to the best guitars for beginners, we cover all the top models right now that are play beautifully and sound amazing. 

Best Fender Guitars For Metal

Think Fender guitars aren’t suitable for metal? Think again! Fender guitars are used by plenty of metal guitarists – from Jim Root to Brant Bjork. In this guide, we detail all the best Fender guitars for metal, including our top picks for 2021 and beyond. 

Best Epiphone Les Paul Guitars

Epiphone Les Paul guitars are utterly superb. Ideal for beginners and even professional players, Epiphone has a Les Paul for every level of guitarist. In this guide, we detail the best Epiphone Les Paul guitars you can buy right now, detail what makes them tick, and outline why you should go for certain models. 

Best Guitars For Doom Metal

If you want to play doom metal – or anything slow and nasty – you will need a guitar that is capable of being tuned really low. Most guitars will handle down-tuning, but some are A LOT better than others. In this guide, we detail the best guitars for doom metal based on doom, fret scale length, and playability. 

Best Epiphone Guitars

Epiphone makes a ton of great guitars from its iconic Les Paul models to the always-amazing SG lineup. You also have plenty of other lesser know but equally appealing models like Wiltshire, Casino, and Dot. We love Epiphone guitars because they look and play like a Gibson, just without the massive price tag…

What Are The Best Electric Guitars?

The best guitars aren’t always the most expensive models. Sure, a proper Gibson Les Paul Custom is always going to sound good. Ditto a top-of-the-line Fender Strat or Tele. But for most players – meaning 90% of you guys – a sub-$800 or even a sub-$500 guitar will be more than sufficient.

Thanks to the enduring popularity of the guitar, with more and more people picking one up than ever, there is now more choice than ever when it comes to electric guitars from budget guitar brands like Harley Benton, EastCoast Guitars, Squire, and Ibanez.

The best guitar for a new player is a guitar that you can A) afford, B) that sound goods, and C) keeps its tuning. To get all of these things, you do not need to spend a lot of money. Our guide to the best guitars for beginners covers all the best options right now for tone, playability, and price.

What Are The Best Electric Guitar Brands?

When it comes to iconic guitar brands, the best brands are obviously Gibson, Fender, PRS, Ibanez, Music Man, and Epiphone to name just a few. If you want to best quality guitar, you will have to pay for it – sometimes well over $1000.

But there are plenty of amazing guitars that are more accessible. Brands like Fender, PRS, Epiphone, and Ibanez produce affordable versions of their more expensive models. And for the most part, these more affordable guitars are just as good, if not better, than their more expensive professional-grade guitars.

Epiphone’s extensive line-up of Les Paul guitars is a testament to this fact. The Epiphone Les Paul Prophecy, for instance, is arguably just as good as anything Gibson produces. In fact, in some respects, it is actually better. Can you name a Gibson guitar that runs Fishman Fluence pickups? Neither can I…

Best “Do It All” Guitar

If you’re looking for a solid workhorse that won’t break the bank but plays like an absolute beauty whether you’re shredding or cutting through some jazz licks, you really cannot go wrong with an Epiphone SG or an Epiphone Les Paul – both are exceptional, “do it all” guitars.

best electric guitar

I keep guitars that are, you know, the neck’s a little bit bent and it’s a little bit out of tune. I want to work and battle it and conquer it and make it express whatever attitude I have at that moment. I want it to be a struggle.— Jack White, White Stripes

In our guide to the best guitars for beginners, we cover all the best affordable guitars that are designed to play all kinds of music brilliantly – from jazz to hard rock and metal, these guitars are reliable, trusted workhorses that can handle whatever you throw at them.

How To Pick The Best Electric Guitar?

Picking your first electric guitar can be a little daunting. What pickups do you want? Do you want to play metal, rock, or maybe pop? How much do you want to spend? There’s no point dropping $1000 on your first guitar. You might not like it and quit. And that’d be a huge waste of money.

Instead, a better option is to go for a more affordable model – something from Squier, Epiphone, or Ibanez. These guitar brands make exceptional beginner-oriented guitars that are designed to play all styles of music from rock and metal to pop and funk.

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