7 Best Electric Guitars Under $1000 In 2023

Best Electric Guitars Under 1000 Dollars

Maybe you are upgrading, or just getting started. At any rate, a guitar in the under 1000 dollar range will surely be a benefit to your experience as a player.

Manufacturers are continually raising the bar with new techniques. This provides players with great instruments.

Our best electric guitars under $1000 have been collected by testing and playing. Also looking at what is popular on the market with musicians today.

The quality of these instruments is sure to impress you in both sound and feel, we sure enjoyed playing them!

Other things we consider when compiling our list of guitars are service and support. Part of buying a new instrument is also having support should something go wrong.

We are also very interested to know if the guitar manufacturers have good dealers. I mean, if you can’t get one, then it’s not worth putting on the list!

There are also many boutique builders doing some amazing things as well. But lead times are longer, and they are quite expensive for this list. So we are keeping it to models that are easy to come by, made by experienced builders in the industry.

Electric Guitars Under $1000 Top Picks

Some of these brand names might be familiar to you. Some are practically household names for guitar brands. They are builders who have put together some amazing guitars. Models in many prices for musicians to benefit from.

They are likely to hold their value for many years as they have names on them with a good reputation. So when it comes time to upgrade, you can rest assured there will be a buyer.

These are just a few things to consider when buying new. So let us take the mystery out of it for you and present our list of the best electric guitars under $1000!

Epiphone Les Paul Standard

Epiphone Les Paul Standard

Specifications

  • Epiphone warranty: 2 year
  • Mahogany body
  • 22 Frets
  • Mahogany neck
  • Alnico classic humbuckers
  • D style neck taper

Our Ratings

  • Sounds: 4.5/5
  • Comfort: 4/5
  • Playability: 4/5
  • Build Quality: 4/5
  • Aesthetics: 4.5/5

The Gibson Les Paul has a legacy that is known for rock and roll. This version made by Epiphone gives players of all different skill levels the ability to afford a Les Paul. Anyone from blues to hard rock players can now get the legendary tone in a quality made guitar.

The pickups and hardware are all quality stuff loaded into a mahogany body with a one piece design. The neck is a through body construction, making it very rigid but also providing a feel that is very dynamic.

There are also many different colors to choose from that make this not only a great sounding electric guitar, but a beautiful one as well.

Sound

The alnico humbuckers in this guitar are not overly hot. But they do provide a good rock tone that is very full. The clarity is also nice, they are not overly dark sounding. When set to the neck pickup, I was able to get a great blues tone that was warm. Especially when I lowered the volume control for the pickup.

The leads and solos rip with this guitar, it has all the frequencies and sustain you could want. It does have enough output to push an amp pretty hard, which was also nice. Crunchy hard rock tones had a throaty sound which is perfect. It’s one of my favorite sounds.

PROS

  • Materials and Design
  • Warm Sound
  • Feels Good To Play
  • Quality Pick-ups and Hardware
  • Different Colors to Choose From

CONS

  • A set-up may be required out of the box
  • Some have reported quality issues

Fender Deluxe Stratocaster

Best Electric Guitars Under $1000

Specifications

  • Fender warranty: 2 year
  • Alder body
  • 22 Frets
  • Pau Ferro Fretboard
  • Noiseless single coil pickups
  • C style neck taper

Our Ratings

  • Sounds: 4/5
  • Comfort: 4.5/5
  • Playability: 4/5
  • Build Quality: 4/5
  • Aesthetics: 4.5/5

This solid body Stratocaster gives you popular Strat features at a price that is unheard of! For a Fender-made guitar, this is the Stratocaster you need to get for your playing adventures!

This beautiful vintage has an ash body with a high gloss polyester finish. It also has a C-style maple neck with a 25.5-inch scale length and vintage-style single coil pick-ups.

This guitar is also available in different colors or finishes. A left-handed model also exists. There is serious bang for your buck in this strat, those that own one love it!

The Stratocaster is one seriously great electric to have in the arsenal! One serious tone machine!

Sound

The first thing that is apparent is the noiseless pickups. I do love the sound of single-coil pickups, but not the noise. They are a great-sounding pickup, the chimey Stratocaster tone is all here. You get the bright twangy tone at the bridge and warmer sounds as you move toward the neck.

The sound is very bright and clear, just as you would expect and hope for. Especially from a Stratocaster. This is, after all, what they are known for, and this model does that very well.

PROS

  • Build Quality
  • Sound/Tone
  • Feel and Ease To Play
  • Great Hardware
  • Colors and Options Available

CONS

  • May Need A Good Set Up

Fender Deluxe Telecaster

Fender Deluxe Nashville Telecaster

Specifications

  • Fender warranty: 2 year
  • Alder body
  • 22 Frets
  • Maple neck
  • Noiseless pickups
  • C style neck taper

Our Ratings

  • Sounds: 4/5
  • Comfort: 4/5
  • Playability: 4/5
  • Build Quality: 4/5
  • Aesthetics: 4/5

The Deluxe Nashville Telecaster delivers classic playability and feel! The vintage noiseless pickup delivers a telecaster tone without the vintage hum! One amazing guitar!

The Nashville telecaster is a serious vintage look sound and feel! It has a gloss alder body, maple C-shaped neck, 25.5-inch scale length, and great-sounding pickups. You can also get it in a left-hand version as well as many colors.

The Fender Deluxe Nashville telecaster is all bang for the buck and is very hard to put down. The feel of the guitar is spot on. It will provide you with an experience that is incredibly vintage and game-changing!

PROS

  • Quality Build Plus Materials
  • Killer Sound/Tone
  • Plays/Feels Great
  • Looks Beautiful And Vintage
  • Experienced Brand Designed

CONS

  • Some complaints were high action until set up properly.

PRS SE Custom 24-08

PRS SE Custom 24-08 Review

Specifications

  • PRS warranty: 5 year
  • Mahogany body
  • 24 Frets
  • Wide-thin neck
  • TCI pickups
  • 8 pickup combinations

Our Ratings

  • Sounds: 4.5/5
  • Comfort: 3.5/5
  • Playability: 4/5
  • Build Quality: 4.5/5
  • Aesthetics: 4.5/5

The new revision in the SE Custom line is the 24-08. An already awesome guitar is made more versatile with 8 pickup positions and tons of tone!

Making an already great model better can be tricky if you are not PRS. They have taken a workhorse and upgraded it to be unbelievable. It has 8 pickup positions from single coil to humbucker thanks to the coil tap electronics.

The switching is very intuitive and high quality. The sounds are simply wonderful and more refined compared to other revisions. The exceptional build quality and electronics give this guitar an excellent feel! It can cover many bases and is better than a lot of others worth far more money. You really cannot go wrong!

Sound

Where to start? This guitar has 8 settings that each have their own tone. You can find some bright single-coil tones in one setting. Then warm, silky smooth sounds on another. The single coil tones were very good. In fact, it almost felt like I was playing a Stratocaster.

On the other end of the spectrum, the hard rock humbucker sounds were also on point. The guitar comes with 9-42 strings, so they are pretty easy to play and do provide a heavy sound should you desire it. This is a great guitar and easily one of my favorites.

PROS

  • Great Construction and Quality
  • 8 Pick Up Positions
  • Fluid Neck
  • Great Pick Attack
  • musically Versatile

CONS

  • Slightly Thin Veneer Top

PRS SE Custom 24

PRS Custom 24

Specifications

  • PRS warranty: 5 year
  • Mahogany body
  • 24 Frets
  • Wide-thin neck
  • PRS Custom pickups

Our Ratings

  • Sounds: 4/5
  • Comfort: 3.5/5
  • Playability: 4/5
  • Build Quality: 4/5
  • Aesthetics: 4/5

The PRS SE Custom 24 is a beautiful guitar and sounds great! This is one of those models that will have people asking you all about it from the amazing tone!

This mahogany body with a maple top has a rich mid-range and bright snap from the PRS custom humbuckers. The wide-thin neck is incredibly comfortable. It’s easy to play, especially with the cutaway in the body.

You can be proud to own it and will have trouble it putting down. The pull pot allows for humbucker and single coil tones. The PRS-designed tremolo gives this guitar the versatility that modern players want!

Sound

The PRS SE Custom 24 is a good-sounding guitar. The pickups are warm and articulate. They have a good mid-range focus. This makes them very throaty sounding under high gain. For leads, this is a good tone as it is full and responsive. For rhythm, it’s thick and deep for great foundational parts.

I am a big fan of PRS guitars and the tones you can get. The student edition is a great way to get this guitar and the good sounds it has to offer. Making proper use of the two pickups can unlock some versatility in many genres of music.

PROS

  • Quality Build and Hardware
  • Excellent sound/tone
  • Plays Very Easy
  • Feels Great
  • Designed by a great builder

CONS

  • Some complaints were high action until set up properly.
  • Whammy bar seems a bit flimsy

ESP LTD Deluxe EC-1000VB

ESP LTD Deluxe EC-1000VB

Specifications

  • ESP warranty: 1 year
  • Mahogany body
  • 24 Frets
  • U-neck shape
  • EMG pickups

Our Ratings

  • Sounds: 4/5
  • Comfort: 4/5
  • Playability: 4/5
  • Build Quality: 4/5
  • Aesthetics: 3.5/5

ESP LTD Deluxe EC-1000 vintage black is powerful and articulate! Thanks to the EMG humbucker pick-ups! This is one killer guitar!

The EC-1000 Vintage Black is a monster in the sound department! It is a mahogany body with a vintage black finish.

The neck is a thin U shape and is incredibly easy to play, and man is it fun! The EMG humbuckers are articulate and tone-packed! Wow, the sustain! This model looks and sounds stunning! ESP has produced a home run, and we can’t recommend it enough! Bang for the buck is an understatement!

PROS

  • Quality Build and Hardware
  • Beautiful looking guitar
  • Easy to play neck and bonus cut-away
  • Incredible sound
  • Made By a Known Brand

CONS

  • Some complaints were high action until set up properly.

Schecter Hellraiser C-1

Schecter Hellraiser C-1

Specifications

  • Schecter’s warranty: 1 year
  • Rosewood Fingerboard
  • 24 Large Frets
  • C-neck shape
  • EMG humbucker pickups

Our Ratings

  • Sounds: 4/5
  • Comfort: 4/5
  • Playability: 4/5
  • Build Quality: 3.5/5
  • Aesthetics: 3.5/5

The Schecter Hellraiser C-1 is designed for modern guitarists! Its double-cutaway body gives you full access to the neck. And a push-pull coil tap pick-up design that will accommodate all types of tones!

The C-1 is a lot of guitar for the money! The Beautiful mahogany body and quilted maple top are brilliant. The neck and action are easy to play, especially with the double cutaways.

The EMG pickups give you a lot of articulate power and are ready to rock! This guitar can almost do anything. And it came well set up out of the box, you really need to look into this model!

PROS

  • Quality Build and Hardware
  • Great Sound
  • Plays Great
  • Rock Solid Tuning
  • Made By a Well Known Brand
  • Very Versatile

CONS

  • Set up might be required for optimal performance
  • Lots of options may turn people off

Our Electric Guitar Selection Process

There are lots of different electrics on the market for under $1000, so keeping our list to a few just made sense. Spending time with these guitars was important. So the smaller list gave us more time to play with them, and get to know their characteristics.

We want to make this easy for you. Especially when these models cover so many genres of music. We also wanted to get feedback from peers and other players who had spent time with these guitars. Overall, this would help find the diamonds in the rough, so to speak.

Everything was considered, from tone to hardware and even support and service. We also looked into things like upgrading with better hardware. Things pickups, should the player care to do so.

We also wanted to confirm that they were not normally blemished or defective. This can be due to trying to keep up with the demand for a lower-priced guitar. There is more to a great instrument than just the guitar itself, so nothing should be overlooked!

What Should You Look for When Selecting an Electric Guitar

If you are not sure which guitar might fit you best, then there are a few things to consider. It can be rather overwhelming when looking for the first one.

There are many things to consider, from body style to genre of music and even the sound of the guitar itself.

The instrument will need to fit you and your play style. It must fit exceptionally well in order to keep your learning journey exciting as a beginner. The wrong one and you may not be motivated to play, and that would be a shame. The electric guitar works its best with an amplifier. So that might also be something to consider when looking for your first model.

It’s not impossible to learn on an electric without an amp. But it’s important to know that it’s very quiet without an amp. This may or may not be a good thing depending on where you live. A loud amp could possibly get you evicted if you live in an apartment, so consider all things!

Conclusion

The overall quality in relation to price is going to be the bottom line in an electric guitar under $1000. Buying a new instrument is an awesome experience, especially if you have never owned one before. So make sure to spend time doing some research before making the decision.

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