Best Electric Guitars Under $500 in 2018 (A Detailed Review)

Our #1 Rated
ENS-EBCH1 Epiphone Les Paul STANDARD Electric Guitar, Ebony
Our #2 Rated
ESP LTD EC-256FM Electric Guitar, See Thru Purple Sunburst
Our #3 Rated
Fender Modern Player Telecaster Thinline Deluxe, Maple Fingerboard - 3-Color Sunburst
Our #4 Rated
Squier by Fender 303000503 Classic Vibe 50's Stratocaster Electric Guitar - 2-Color Sunburst - Maple Fingerboard
Our #5 Rated
Squier by Fender Classic Vibe 50's Hand Telecaster Electric Guitar - Butterscotch Blonde - Maple Fingerboard
Body: Mahogany
Body: Mahogany
Body: Mahogany
Body: Solid-Wood
Body: Solid-Wood
Fretboard: Rosewood
Fretboard: Rosewood
Fretboard: Maple
Fretboard: Maple
Fretboard: Maple
Neck: Mahogany
Neck: Mahogany
Neck: Maple
Neck: Maple
Neck: Maple
Bridge: Tune-O-Matic
Bridge: Stoptail
Bridge: Hardtail
Bridge: Tremolo
Bridge: Vintage Style
Pickup: Humbucker
Pickup: Humbucker
Pickup: Combination
Pickup: Single-Coil
Pickup: Single-Coil
Our #1 Rated
ENS-EBCH1 Epiphone Les Paul STANDARD Electric Guitar, Ebony
Body: Mahogany
Fretboard: Rosewood
Neck: Mahogany
Bridge: Tune-O-Matic
Pickup: Humbucker
Our #2 Rated
ESP LTD EC-256FM Electric Guitar, See Thru Purple Sunburst
Body: Mahogany
Fretboard: Rosewood
Neck: Mahogany
Bridge: Stoptail
Pickup: Humbucker
Our #3 Rated
Fender Modern Player Telecaster Thinline Deluxe, Maple Fingerboard - 3-Color Sunburst
Body: Mahogany
Fretboard: Maple
Neck: Maple
Bridge: Hardtail
Pickup: Combination
Our #4 Rated
Squier by Fender 303000503 Classic Vibe 50's Stratocaster Electric Guitar - 2-Color Sunburst - Maple Fingerboard
Body: Solid-Wood
Fretboard: Maple
Neck: Maple
Bridge: Tremolo
Pickup: Single-Coil
Our #5 Rated
Squier by Fender Classic Vibe 50's Hand Telecaster Electric Guitar - Butterscotch Blonde - Maple Fingerboard
Body: Solid-Wood
Fretboard: Maple
Neck: Maple
Bridge: Vintage Style
Pickup: Single-Coil
Can't afford a Gibson Les Paul? Well, consider checking out Epiphone Les Paul Standard. It's "almost" got the signature sound from the original Les Paul, without breaking your bank as it's the best electric guitar under $500. Not convinced? You might want to check what users think of this guitar.

READ USER REVIEWS


best electric guitars under 500 dollarsBuying an electric guitar is a real investment. When you invest, you are willing to go an extra mile or two checking reviews or consulting an expert to make the wisest move.

The Best Electric Guitars Under $500 in 2018

Let me do half of the dirty work for you.

Here’s a comprehensive and complete list of the best electric guitars under $500.

Epiphone Les Paul Standard

ENS-EBCH1 Epiphone Les Paul STANDARD Electric Guitar, Ebony
95 Reviews
ENS-EBCH1 Epiphone Les Paul STANDARD Electric Guitar, Ebony
  • Classic Les Paul with Mahogany Body and Maple Veneer Top
  • Epiphone Alnico Classic Humbuckers
  • Grover Machine Heads
  • 1960's SlimTaper D Profile Neck

Owning a Les Paul guitar is one of the best things you can have. From the material, to the accessories, to the sound and to its quality, you will never feel that Epiphone Les Paul Standard is just a cheaper alternative.

Many people love Gibson and they know that Epiphone is a cheaper alternative to the Gibson guitars. Certainly, LP Standard is a cheaper guitar, but is way better than its price tag.

Feel

This is very comfortable to play, that you’ll forget this is only under $1000. The overall built is pretty solid and the knobs are very accurate.

Look

Has the looks and aesthetics as the real LP and it is built with quality. The standard maple neck design and the rosewood fretboard are classic and looks durable.

Sound

Just like the top-of-the-line Gibson Les Paul, the LP Standard still got that impressive sound. You can easily control the volume and all knobs to produce the Les Paul signature tone.

Value for Money

Well, you can get a good sounding guitar for a cheaper price. Quality guitars with great sound quality don’t always come in cheap price tag. This is such a rare deal!

Related: Epiphone Les Paul Standard Review

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PROS

  • Great sound
  • Very comfortable to play
  • Built with quality

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CONS

  • Poor quality control of parts

 

ESP LTD EC-256FM

ESP LTD EC-256FM Electric Guitar, See Thru Purple Sunburst
34 Reviews
ESP LTD EC-256FM Electric Guitar, See Thru Purple Sunburst
  • Mahogany body
  • Comfortable three-piece thin U-shaped mahogany neck
  • Rosewood fingerboard
  • ESP Designed LH-150 pickups

A great player is made by great instruments. And, if you are looking far and wide for a great guitar, the ESP LTD EC-256FM is the answer.

Comes with great build, great resonance, amazing hardware and electronics, not the mention the beautiful black finish, this thing will really make you look like a god.

ESP is not behind in making solid and quality guitars and the EC-256FM is among them. Its build and hardware is perfectly crafted to give the impressive sound that you are looking for in an electric guitar.

Feel

With the mahogany construction, you can never expect a lightweight guitar, it’s heavy. However, the added contour on the back makes playing with it more comfortable. It has a thin neck for your hands to perfectly fit.

Look

The elegant black or metallic gold finish makes you look like a god. It’s nicely finished plus the retro touch makes it more like a classic guitar.

Sound

With just a few tweaks of the control knobs, you will get that smooth and rich sound quality. The mahogany gives that warm sound that is pleasing to the ear.

Value for Money

A great guitar offering a range of good sounds. Perfect for beginners and intermediate players.

Related: ESP LTD EC-256 Review

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PROS

  • Thin neck profile
  • Great design

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CONS

  • Slightly poor design issues
  • Heavy
  • Neck pickup a lot louder than the bridge

 

Fender Modern Player Telecaster Plus

Fender Modern Player Telecaster Thinline Deluxe, Maple Fingerboard - 3-Color Sunburst
98 Reviews
Fender Modern Player Telecaster Thinline Deluxe, Maple Fingerboard - 3-Color Sunburst
  • Two MP-90 pickups offer a huge range of sweet and aggressive tones.
  • With a 9.5" radius and 22 medium jumbo frets, this model offers comfort and speed.
  • Six-saddle hard-tail bridge allows for more precise intonation and individual string-height adjustment.

If you are looking to play the old school rock and the model metal tones, you’ve found the right company with Fender Modern Player Telecaster Plus. It’s like the old meets the new with the design and its peripheries.

It’s a Fender-made, so you know about its quality. Few things worth mentioning on this Tele are its versatility and playability. If you are an intermediate player, you can set-up this thing without any hassle.

Feel

This Tele has a modern feel, great jumbo frets and flatter fingerboard. You can play around some free styles with that beautifully designed neck.

Look

Elegant looking with vintage finish made it a great reminder of the good old days of the Telecasters. It’s got a complete package which offers a totally new alternative that produces different touch to various music genres.

Sound

The classic style makes you achieve that blues and jazzy tones. You can also play without problem with music styles like metal, funk and rock rhythms.

Value for Money

Although it’s a great guitar, it might not be the best investment for beginners. But, for experienced players and intermediate guitarists, this provides a great return way beyond its price tag.

Related: Fender Modern Telecaster Plus Review

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PROS

  • Great playability
  • Durable construction
  • Wide range of music genres

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CONS

  • Might be difficult to play around for ultimate beginners

 

Squier Classic Vibe Stratocaster 50s

SALE at 4% OFF
Squier by Fender 303000503 Classic Vibe 50's Stratocaster Electric Guitar - 2-Color Sunburst - Maple Fingerboard
45 Reviews
Squier by Fender 303000503 Classic Vibe 50's Stratocaster Electric Guitar - 2-Color Sunburst - Maple Fingerboard
  • Alder body with gloss polyester finish
  • 1-Piece Maple, Modern C Shape neck, 9.5 in radius maple fingerboard and 21 medium jumbo frets
  • 3 Custom Vintage Style Single-Coil Strat Pickups with Staggered, AlNiCo 3 Magnet Pole Pieces and Aged White Covers
  • Vintage Style Synchronized Tremolo
  • Master volume with 2 tone controls with 5 position pickup selector switch

If you feel nostalgic when you hear songs from the 50s, how about reliving the music with a Strat? The Squier Classic Vibe Stratocaster 50s is a great tool that lets you bring the old times in the modern world.

Packed with great craftsmanship, hardware and electronics, this fairly-priced guitar is a must-grab for beginners and seasoned players alike.

Going to play classic music in your next gig? You can’t go wrong with Squier’s Classic Vibe Strat. You can achieve that great quality sound and sustain, like those played by pros.

Feel

The high-grade maple neck makes it glimmers allowing smooth and comfortable play. It’s lightweight and comfortable, making it a great buddy for jamming and playing for long hours.

Look

The guitar is nicely set-up and it has a good and quality bridge. Both the body construction and the hardware are robust and solid.

Sound

You can achieve that fuller tone with an improved level of warmth, which is perfect to replicate vintage sounds. The great thing about this is, it can hold tune pretty nicely and it has a great resonance, too.

Value for Money

For its price, this is a nice trade for beginners to start with. So, start reliving the beautiful country music or blues you long to hear.

Related: Squier Classic Vibe 50s Stratocaster Review

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PROS

  • Great looks
  • Wonderful neck

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CONS

  • Possible upgrade of the pickups for greater performance

 

Squier Classic Vibe 50s Telecaster

SALE at 3% OFF
Squier by Fender Classic Vibe 50's Hand Telecaster Electric Guitar - Butterscotch Blonde - Maple Fingerboard
111 Reviews
Squier by Fender Classic Vibe 50's Hand Telecaster Electric Guitar - Butterscotch Blonde - Maple Fingerboard
  • Pine Body Maple C shape neck with a 9.5 in radius and 21 medium jumbo frets
  • 2 Custom Vintage Style Single-Coil Tele Pickups
  • Vintage Style Strings-Thru-Body Tele Bridge with 3 Brass Barrel Saddles
  • Master Volume, Master tone controls
  • Strings Fender USA, NPS, (.009-.042 Gauges)

Still thinking of your favorite Telecaster guitarists and wonder when are you going to play like them? Well, now is the perfect time to grab the Squier Classic Vibe 50s Telecaster.

Made with high-quality material and construction and packed with great electronics and hardware, this is the closest you can get to an original Telecaster without spending your years of earnings.

Finally, you can now play old school blues with this affordable Telecaster. It doesn’t vary very far from the way it looks, as all Telecasters share almost the same appearance. What separates it from the rest is its cheaper price and versatility.

Feel

The guitar is widely known for its solid body structure. Both the body the neck are well made for utmost comfort and playability.

Look

The vintage look and the glossy finish make this guitar luscious. It doesn’t look like a cheap one.

Sound

If you won’t look at the guitar closely, it sounds like the authentic American Telecaster. The quality of tones it produces is way better than its price. Though it doesn’t get that bright and twangy Telecaster tone, it has a great resonance.

Value for Money

How about getting a guitar at this price? Stunned? Start to play your favorite music with this cheaper Tele replica now.

Related: Squier Classic Vibe 50s Telecaster Review

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PROS

  • Great C-shape neck
  • Great price

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CONS

  • Narrow frets

 

Schecter Omen 6

Schecter OMEN-6 6-String Electric Guitar, Walnut Satin
50 Reviews
Schecter OMEN-6 6-String Electric Guitar, Walnut Satin
  • Pearloid Semi Goth Inlays
  • Basswood Body
  • Rosewood Fretboard
  • Schecter Diamond Plus Pickups

Looking forward to play heavy rock or metal, but don’t want to buy expensive equipment? If so, Schecter Omen 6 is the right choice for you. From the build, to the hardware and control adjustments, this thing will surely make you scream.

It is definitely a true performer. Schecter, as always, has made great guitars and Omen 6 is among the most reasonably priced guitars they’ve produced.

Feel

It has that solid maple neck profile for faster and more accurate action. It has some noticeable weight though, but you can still play with it for several hours without being worn out.

Look

Though it has that traditional ached Super Strat design, it is packed with very essential features. Like the Epiphone, Omen 6 is made of mahogany body with attractive maple top. The overall design is simple, but gorgeous.

Sound

If you feel like you need to strike the guitar with a heavy gain distortion, it can pretty much handle it. It offers a wide variety of music range. And, transitioning from each genre is very easy with just a quick fine tuning.

Value for Money

Omen 6 is a great all-purpose guitar, but can play rock and metal with proper set-up. With its easy configuration, this is perfect for beginners.

Related: Shecter Omen 6 Review

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PROS

  • Superb-quality pickups
  • Stable tuning and setup

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CONS

  • Heavier than some guitars
  • Selector switch sometimes fidgety

 

Wrapping Up

You end up reading the review, so you really wanted to invest in a cheaper guitar? Don’t worry, what we’ve reviewed here are among the top guitars that outperforms their price tag. Surely, these guitars are worthy of your money.

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