You are currently viewing 5 Best Alvarez Guitars for 2024 – Brand to Replace Yamaha?

Last Updated on March 2, 2024 by Teemu Suomala

Author: DL Shepherd

Darren has been playing guitar for over 23 years. He fronted the metal band Suddenly Silence in the early 2000’s, and also achieved recognition as an award-winning bluegrass guitarist.

A native of southwestern Virginia, and has shared the stage with many big-name acts from various genres. When he is not playing one of his many guitars, he can be found riding his Harley through the mountains of Virginia.

photo reveals owner of guitaristnextdoor.com

Editing & Research: Teemu Suomala

I first grabbed the guitar in 2009. I started this website in January 2020 because I couldn’t do window installation anymore due to my health problems. I love guitars and have played dozens and dozens of different guitars through different amps and pedals over the years, and also, building a website interested me, so I decided to just go for it! I got lucky and managed to get awesome people to help me with my website.

I also got lucky because I have you visiting my website right now. Thank you. I do all this for you guys. If you have any recommendations, tips, or feedback, just leave a comment, I would love to chat with you. I have also been fortunate to produce content for several large guitar websites, such as SongsterrMusicnotesGuitarGuitar, and Ultimate Guitar.

I spend my spare time exercising and hanging out with my wife and crazy dog (I guess that went the right way…).


displays Alvarez Masterworks Elite 77 Folk

Best Overall – Alvarez Masterworks Elite 77 Folk

Reviewer: DL Shepherd

Sound
Playability
Overall Quality
Value For Money
Fingerpicking feel

Summary

Pros 
-Walnut construction looks and sounds incredible
-Folk body size is great for long sets
-Onboard electronics sound great through a guitar amp

Cons
-Doesn’t project very well when played unplugged with a group of other instruments
-Soundhole controls are nice, but external knobs make it easier to adjust between songs. 

Who is this guitar for?
The Alvarez Masterworks Elite 77 Folk is for any guitarist that is looking for a great acoustic electric to use live or in the studio. It responds well to fingerstyle playing and rhythm playing and really shines when it is plugged in. 

4.8

How Alvarez Masterworks Elite 77 Folk sounds:

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The Next Best:

Best for Beginners – Alvarez AF30


Our Overall Rating

Summary

Pros 

  • Folk size is great for players of all sizes
  • Solid Sitka spruce top projects wonderfully for a small guitar
  • Laminated Sapele body is very durable
  • Real bone nut and saddle help with volume and clarity

Cons

  • Open-pore finish isn’t as classy as a polished finish

Who is this guitar for?

The Alvarez AF30 is great for beginner guitarists who are looking for a well-built, great-sounding guitar to have as their first instrument. It is also great for seasoned guitarists looking for a small guitar to keep on hand. 

 

Best Premium – Alvarez FYM70CE Yairi


Our Overall Rating

Summary

Pros 

  • Small body size is great for longer playing sessions
  • Excellent projection and volume for a small guitar
  • Onboard electronics are crystal clear when plugged in

Cons

  • A guitar of this caliber should have an onboard tuner
  • Priced a bit high for many players

Who is this guitar for?

The Alvarez Yairi FYM70CE Folk is for anyone looking for a high-end OM-sized acoustic guitar with premium electronics and a great unplugged sound.

Best Budget – Alvarez AD66CESHB

displays Alvarez AD66CESHB

Our Overall Rating

Summary

Pros 

  • All mahogany body provides warm, well-balanced tone
  • Bone nut and saddle allow for great clarity and projection
  • Onboard electronics are some of the best we’ve tried
  • Priced affordably for most musicians

Cons

  • Cutaway decreases the unplugged volume

Who is this guitar for?

This guitar is for the budget-conscious player that is looking for their first or second acoustic electric guitar with professional features. 

Best for Flatpicking – Alvarez MD70EGB

displays Alvarez MD70EBG

Our Overall Rating

Summary

Pros 

  • Premium tonewoods provide a well-balanced tone
  • Great projection and volume for cutting through mixes
  • Traditional looks are classy and sophisticated
  • Amazing plugged-in tone from LR Baggs electronics

Cons

  • An onboard tuner would be nice

Who is this guitar for?

This guitar is for anyone looking for a great bluegrass guitar for flatpicking without breaking the bank. 

Compare The Key Specs:

graphic compares 5 Best Alvarez Guitars

Compare The Tonewoods:

Graphic compares acoustic guitar tonewoods

Body Top: Solid Black Walnut

Sides: Solid Black Walnut

Back: Solid Black Walnut

Neck: Mahogany

Fretboard: Indian Laurel

Body Top: Solid Sitka Spruce

Sides: Laminated Sapele

Back: Laminated Sapele

Neck: Mahogany

Fretboard: Techwood

Body Top: Solid AAA Sitka Spruce

Sides: Solid East Indian Rosewood

Back: Solid East Indian Rosewood

Neck: Mahogany

Fretboard: Ebony

Body Top: Solid African Mahogany

Sides: Laminated African Mahogany

Back: Laminated African Mahogany

Neck: Mahogany

Fretboard: Indian Laurel

Body Top: Solid AAA Sitka Spruce

Sides: Solid East Indian Rosewood

Back: Solid East Indian Rosewood

Neck: Mahogany

Fretboard: Indian Laurel

You can learn more about acoustic guitar tonewoods here.


The story of Alvarez began in 1965. They were originally the brainchild of Gene Kornblum, the founder of St. Louis Music. He met Japanese master luthier, Kazuo Yairi, and the two began a partnership that allowed Kornblum to import high-quality steel string acoustic guitars into the United States. He named these guitars “Alvarez”. 

Today, under new ownership, Alvarez still produces amazing acoustic guitars. While many of their models are made in China, the top Alvarez guitars are made in Kani, Japan, and sold as Alvarez-Yairi. 

Since many of their high-end instruments command several thousand dollars, it is apparent that they use high-quality tonewoods such as mahogany, maple, rosewood, cedar, and walnut. However, there are a couple of things that set Alvarez’s guitars apart from the rest of the crowd. First, many models use the Direct Coupled Bridge – a design invented by Kazuo Yairi in the 1980s that delivers more vibration to the guitar top. 

The second thing is their FST2 bracing system. This is a forward-shifted scalloped bracing system designed by the late Kazuo Yairi. It is designed to provide exceptional projection and note separation. 

Now that we know a little about this great guitar company, let’s take a look at these sweet Alvarez guitars available today!


Our Reviews of The Top 5

To preface the rest of this article, I want you all to know that I am an Alvarez guitar geek. I have owned several of them, and currently, two of my main acoustic guitars are Alvarez models. I love playing these guitars because of their high-quality materials, amazing looks, incredible playability, and well-balanced tone. Their onboard preamp is the best that I have ever used on an acoustic too. 

Keep These 3 Key Things In Mind When Choosing:

Alvarez-Yairi models are high-end and made in Japan; Alvarez models are made in China.

Many Alvarez models are available with an acoustic preamp on board.

Pay attention to the size! Some models are smaller than you might think!

Ok, enough about my need for all things Alvarez. On to the reviews!

Best Overall – Alvarez Masterworks Elite 77 Folk Acoustic-Electric Guitar

displays Alvarez Masterworks Elite 77 Folk

Specs

Body StyleFolk/OM
TopSolid Black Walnut
Back & SidesSolid Black Walnut
NeckMahogany
Neck ShapeSoft V to C
Fretboard21 frets, Indian Laurel
NutBone
Nut Width1.75″
ElectronicsLR Baggs VTC Element System
SaddleBone
Scale-Length24.8″

When we look at the Alvarez Masterworks Elite 77 Folk, the first thing that tends to jump out is the beautiful abalone inlay work contrasting against the dark wood. It is an image that makes me drool every single time. This is walnut, a highly underutilized tonewood that gives the guitar more than just a good look. 

We’re getting ahead of ourselves here. Let’s talk about the folk-sized body. The top, back, and sides are made from walnut while the neck is made from mahogany.  The smaller body shape makes it incredibly comfortable to play during long sets. Plus, it is great for players who have trouble handling a large dreadnought. There’s even a beveled armrest built in for added playing comfort.

The neck is comfortable from the upper frets to the lower frets, and the neck profile is thinner which allows for smoother acoustic soloing.

You can certainly shred on this acoustic if you want! The fingerboard is Indian Laurel and is incredibly smooth. You won’t feel any sharp fret ends here! 

The sound is well-balanced and mid-focused with sparkly highs and punchy lows. While it doesn’t project as well as a spruce or cedar top, it still provides a surprising amount of volume for a folk-sized guitar. Fingerpickers and flatpickers alike will love the response this guitar provides. 

While many of Alvarez’s models use their proprietary system, the Masterworks Elite 77 Folk uses an LR Baggs VTC preamp. The controls are mounted inside the soundhole for ease of access on the fly. Plug it into your favorite acoustic guitar amplifier and get ready to be blown away by the tone! It is definitely a guitar that was meant for an amplifier. It is crisp, clean, and fluid with plenty of punch. 

While it was hard to pick the best Alvarez acoustic guitar, the Masterworks Elite 77 Folk stands out because of the price, looks, playability, and sound. 

Check another sound demo:

Summary 

Pros 

  • Walnut construction looks and sounds incredible
  • Folk body size is great for long sets
  • Onboard electronics sound great through a guitar amp

Cons

  • Doesn’t project very well when played unplugged with a group of other instruments
  • Soundhole controls are nice, but external knobs make it easier to adjust between songs. 

What others are saying:

“I played over 100 guitars while making my decision, my Alvarez sounds better than 99% of the Martins, Taylors, Epiphones, Gibson’s, yes I played them all in this decision, and just as good as the other 1%, of course this is just my opinion, I have played guitar for nearly 50 years now, so I have heard a lot of guitars!” Aaron from Kingsport, TN

Who Is This For?

The Alvarez Masterworks Elite 77 Folk is for any guitarist that is looking for a great acoustic electric to use live or in the studio. It responds well to fingerstyle playing and rhythm playing and really shines when it is plugged in. 
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Who is This NOT For?

This guitar is not for players who are looking for a loud, driving unplugged sound. 


Best for Beginners – Alvarez AF30

Specs

Body StyleFolk/OM
TopSolid Sitka Spruce
Back & SidesLaminated Sapele
NeckMahogany
Neck ShapeSoft V to C
Fretboard21 frets, Techwood
NutBone
Nut Width1.75″
ElectronicsFishman Sonitone
SaddleBone
Scale-Length24.8″

It is a common misconception that beginners have to have a cheap acoustic guitar to learn on. While they don’t need a top-of-the-line acoustic costing thousands of dollars, they do need a great playing acoustic that won’t break the bank. The Alvarez AF30 is great for beginners because it provides them with a solid-top acoustic that plays great right out of the box at a price that is easy to afford. 

This folk-sized guitar (similar to a Martin OM style) is built with a solid Sitka spruce top and a laminated Sapele back and sides. Sapele is similar to mahogany in tone while the solid Sitka spruce top provides clarity and projection. It is a recipe for a guitar that lends itself well to both fingerpicking and strumming. In addition, it is also incredibly durable. 

The mahogany neck is comfortable and great for chords or soloing. It has a “V-to-C” neck profile which makes it a great player from the low frets all the way up to the high frets.

Premium tuners help keep it in tune while a genuine bone nut and saddle help with volume and clarity. 

The Alvarez AF30 is a great choice for beginners of all ages because of its small size and incredible playability. It won’t feel like a guitar that you will just end up growing out of as you progress. Even seasoned players will enjoy keeping it around as a songwriting companion. 

If you’re looking for a solid place to start your guitar-playing journey, look no further than the Alvarez AF30. 

Check a sound demo:

Summary 

Pros 

  • Folk size is great for players of all sizes
  • Solid Sitka spruce top projects wonderfully for a small guitar
  • Laminated Sapele body is very durable
  • Real bone nut and saddle help with volume and clarity

Cons

  • Open-pore finish isn’t as classy as a polished finish

What others are saying:

“I have had this guitar for 8 years now and play it almost every day! The solid top is a really nice feature on an entry-level guitar, and the tone has opened up as the guitar has aged a little. The sound is pleasantly bright and clear, a little Taylor-esque, and the guitar is loud for its size. Great buy if you want a cheaper guitar to leave out of the case and have on hand. It has not been in a case once in 8 years (in dry Minnesota winters, no less), and even out on a stand it stays in tune, hasn’t developed any cracks, and has maintained good action. I have not found a better guitar for the price! – Joe, Sweetwater Customer

Who Is This For?

The Alvarez AF30 is great for beginner guitarists who are looking for a well-built, great-sounding guitar to have as their first instrument. It is also great for seasoned guitarists looking for a small guitar to keep on hand. 

Who This is NOT For?

This guitar is not for players who are looking for a big, loud acoustic tone. The small body simply won’t allow it. 


Best Premium – Alvarez FYM70CE Yairi Masterworks Series Folk/OM

Specs

Body StyleYairi Folk/OM
TopSolid AAA Sitka Spruce
Back & SidesSolid East Indian Rosewood
NeckMahogany
Neck ShapeSoft V to C
Fretboard20 frets, Ebony
NutBone
Nut Width1.718″
ElectronicsLR Baggs VTC Element System
SaddleTusq
Scale-Length25″

If you’re wanting to go all in and get yourself a top-of-the-line Alvarez, then the Alvarez FYM70CE Yairi Masterworks Folk/OM is the guitar to get. This guitar is built in the Yairi workshop in Japan by skilled luthiers and possesses simplistic beauty along with modern design appointments. 

It all starts with a folk/OM body size made from all solid tonewoods. In this case, Indian rosewood back and sides are mated with a solid Sitka spruce top. This gives the guitar a well-balanced tone that is perfect for intricate arpeggios or fingerpicking.

The size is perfect for nearly every application – from the studio to songwriting sessions to live performances. It stays comfortable for as long as you can play it. 

The mahogany neck is comfortable for chording or for blazing solos. A smooth ebony fingerboard tops it off and makes noting effortless. The Alvarez Direct Coupled Bridge (a Yairi original design) helps transfer more vibration to the top for greater projection and note clarity. The FST2 bracing system, another Yairi design, keeps things solid while allowing the top to resonate more freely for maximum projection. For a small guitar, this thing has some volume! 

Premium Gotoh tuners keep things in tune while an LR Baggs Element active pickup system allows you to plug into your favorite acoustic guitar amplifier and be heard with crystal clarity. 

You really need to see this guitar to appreciate its simplistic, elegant styling. It is no wonder Alvarez makes some of the best acoustic guitars on the planet. The FYM70CE is a perfect example of Alvarez’s artistry and craftsmanship. 

Check a sound demo:

Summary 

Pros 

  • Small body size is great for longer playing sessions
  • Excellent projection and volume for a small guitar
  • Onboard electronics are crystal clear when plugged in

Cons

  • A guitar of this caliber should have an onboard tuner
  • Priced a bit high for many players

What others are saying:

“This is the Best playing, Best sounding acoustic guitar I have ever received, Out of the Box. I could not ask for a better setup.” – Ron, Sweetwater customer

Who Is This For?

The Alvarez Yairi FYM70CE Folk is for anyone looking for a high-end OM-sized acoustic guitar with premium electronics and a great unplugged sound.

Who This is NOT For?

This guitar is not priced for beginners. It is also not for fans of a big dreadnought sound. It is a smaller guitar. 


Best Budget – Alvarez AD66CESHB

displays Alvarez AD66CESHB

Specs

Body StyleDreadnought
TopSolid African Mahogany
Back & SidesLaminated African Mahogany
NeckMahogany
Neck ShapeSoft V to C
Fretboard21 frets, Indian Laurel
NutBone
Nut Width1.75″
ElectronicsLR Baggs StagePro EQ with Element Pickup
SaddleBone
Scale-Length25.5″

You might think that “best budget” means that it has to be dirt cheap and low quality. That is not the case. While price is obviously a big deal, that doesn’t mean that quality has to suffer. That’s why the Alvarez AD66CESHB is one of the best budget guitars in the industry right now. 

The Alvarez AD66CESHB is a dreadnought acoustic-electric guitar that is priced affordably for most musicians and gives them a lot of professional features at the same time. If “value” was a tangible object, then it would be this guitar. 

The body is made from mahogany. In fact, most of the guitar is mahogany including the back, sides, top, and neck. This gives the guitar a warm, well-balanced tone that provides smooth bass and punchy highs. The neck is a “V to C” profile that is great for chords or acoustic soloing.

The cutaway allows you to play it up high like an electric guitar for awesome solo work. Its Indian laurel fretboard is smooth to play and is marked only by a single decorative inlay at the 12th fret. 

If you want to plug in, the Alvarez AD66CESHB happens to be equipped with one of the best onboard electronics systems in the industry: the LR Baggs StagePro Preamp EQ and Element pickup system. This system allows complete tonal control thanks to the 3-band EQ and other tone-shaping functions. This means that you do not need a dedicated acoustic amplifier – you can plug straight into the house PA and you can adjust not only the volume but also the overall tone. Pretty snazzy! 

Playing it unplugged is a pleasure as well. It doesn’t have as much volume as a guitar without a cutaway, but it still does a decent job of getting through a mix of other instruments. I jammed out the main riff to “Simple Man” and could be heard easily over 3 other instruments. 

Overall, it will be tough to find a guitar that offers so many professional features at a price that won’t make you flinch. 

If you like this guitar but want a smaller body, check out our review of the folk version of this guitar. 

Check a sound demo:

Summary 

Pros 

  • All mahogany body provides warm, well-balanced tone
  • Bone nut and saddle allow for great clarity and projection
  • Onboard electronics are some of the best we’ve tried
  • Priced affordably for most musicians

Cons

  • Cutaway decreases the unplugged volume

What others are saying:

“Everything about this guitar is 1st class for an intermediate instrument.” – Mike, Sweetwater customer

Who Is This For?

This guitar is for the budget-conscious player that is looking for their first or second acoustic electric guitar with professional features. 

Who is This NOT For?

This guitar is not for someone who is looking for a dreadnought with a ton of volume. The cutaway and the mahogany top make it a little quieter than most dreadnoughts. 


Best for Flatpicking – Alvarez MD70EGB Masterworks 70 Dreadnought Bluegrass

displays Alvarez MD70EBG

Specs

Body StyleDreadnought
TopSolid AAA Sitka Spruce
Back & SidesSolid East Indian Rosewood
NeckMahogany
Neck ShapeSoft V to C
Fretboard21 frets, Indian Laurel
NutBone
Nut Width1.75″
ElectronicsLR Baggs VTC Element System
SaddleBone
Scale-Length25.5″

While Martin may be the King of Bluegrass Guitars, the Alvarez MD70EGB Bluegrass has to be the prince. While it is not the first name that most people reach for when they are wanting a great bluegrass guitar, they are highly respected in bluegrass circles for their exceptional tone, playability, and affordability. 

The Alvarez MD70EGB Bluegrass has a lot to offer a bluegrass player who wants something affordable yet capable. It features an Indian rosewood back and sides, a solid Sitka spruce top, and a mahogany neck. This is a tried and true recipe for a great bluegrass guitar that will only sound better as it ages. 

But that’s not all…

You get premium features like a real bone nut and saddle, premium open-gear tuners, and a silky smooth Indian laurel fingerboard that just begs to be played fast.

These features are typically found on guitars costing 3 times the price. 

I’m not done yet…

The Alvarez MD70EGB Bluegrass also features herringbone purfling for a traditional look and an LR Baggs VTC preamp and Element pickup system for an incredible plugged-in tone. If you’re a fan of Billy Strings and his plugged-in sound, then this is a great starting point (without the electric guitar pickup, of course). 

If you are all about playing fast licks and solos, then the Alvarez MD70EGB will give you everything you need to bust them out while cutting through a thick mix of instruments. 

Check a sound demo:

Summary 

Pros 

  • Premium tonewoods provide a well-balanced tone
  • Great projection and volume for cutting through mixes
  • Traditional looks are classy and sophisticated
  • Amazing plugged-in tone from LR Baggs electronics

Cons

  • An onboard tuner would be nice

What others are saying:

“This guitar has a dynamic response and can power thru like Dreadnoughts in a totally different price range. The best guitar bang for the buck I have experienced in my 51 years of playing, delicate fingerpicking, or powerhouse riffing, You will have a wide imaginative tool in your hands!”– Jim, Sweetwater customer

Who Is This For?

This guitar is for anyone looking for a great bluegrass guitar for flatpicking without breaking the bank. 

Who This is NOT For?

This guitar is not for fingerpickers because it requires a bit of force to really sing. 


Runner-Ups That Just Missed The Top 5


Buyer’s Guide – How to Choose The Right Alvarez Guitar For You?

Check our full acoustic guitar buying guide here.

Body Styles

Choosing the right body style can be done by looking at your preferred playing style. If you are a fingerstyle player, then you might want to look at a guitar with a folk/OM body shape. This is because the smaller body shape is more resonant which lends itself well to the soft touch of fingerstyle playing.

Flatpickers and strummers generally like a dreadnought shape due to their volume and projection. This body shape allows for a thicker rhythm sound with enough volume for solos to be played over a group of other instruments. 

Parlor guitars are great songwriting companions or travel guitars. They are small, compact, and pack well when you’re traveling because they don’t take up much room. 

When you look at your playing style and choose your body shape based on it, then you will most likely find a guitar that works for you the first time around. The goal should be to play as many different shapes as you can to find the right one. 

Learn more about acoustic guitar body styles here.


Tonewoods

Graphic compares acoustic guitar tonewoods

Alvarez uses a variety of tonewoods. These include

  • mahogany,
  • maple,
  • Sitka spruce,
  • Indian rosewood,
  • Sapele,
  • and cedar.

Generally, mahogany gives a warm, well-balanced tone with smooth lows and sparkling highs. Sapele will sound very similar to mahogany. 

displays mahogany wood and reveals how it can affect the sound of electric guitar
Mahogany

Maple is very bright with cutting highs and bright lows. Indian rosewood is well-balanced with lots of mid-range and warm bass. Sitka spruce is used for tops because it is very resonant and projects well. Cedar is softer than Sitka spruce and is therefore recommended for fingerstyle guitarists. It is used on classical guitar tops. 

It is a great idea to research the different tonewoods to see what properties they possess. Of course, playing them will give you a better idea.

Learn more about acoustic guitar tonewoods here.


Budget

Many people think that a good guitar has to cost thousands of dollars. That is simply not true. While having a budget generally keeps you from getting higher-quality instruments, it doesn’t mean you have to settle for something low-quality. 

Alvarez makes many affordable models with professional features specifically for those who are on a budget. Premium tonewoods, electronics, and hardware are used in many of their models and provide players with features that are not commonly found on other “budget” guitars. 

Look for a guitar that is going to give you the most bang for your buck. This will obviously depend on what you need (an onboard tuner, EQ, no electronics, etc.) as well as your budget (your budget may differ from mine, for example). 

Simply put: you don’t have to go into debt for a good guitar. Simply get one that offers you the features that you need at a price that you can afford.


Skill Level

infographic reveals Different Guitar Skill Levels

If you’re a beginner, it is best to go with a guitar that is comfortable and affordable. These are usually the most important things for any beginner to consider when buying their first guitar because if it isn’t comfortable, you probably won’t play it very much. If it is expensive and you find out that the guitar isn’t for you, then you’re stuck with an expensive guitar with features you’ll never appreciate. 

If you’re already an experienced player, then you will appreciate features such as premium hardware and electronics. You may even wish to have something hand-crafted like many of the Alvarez-Yairi series. Again, this is all personal preference. I have been playing for 25 years and I still love Alvarez’s more affordable guitars. They have just proven themselves time and time again for me. No matter what your skill level may be, there is an Alvarez for you. 


How to Test

There are a ton of choices on this list alone so it is completely understandable to be lost when it comes to figuring out which brand to go with. You can narrow down your search by figuring out your basics:

  • What is my playing style? Fingerstyle or flatpicking? Soloing or rhythm? Plugged or unplugged?
  • What tone do I want? Bright and articulate? Well balanced? Heavy on the bass?
  • How will I be playing most of the time? At home? In the studio? On the road? 

Once you figure these things out, you’ll soon see the direction you should go. If you’re wanting a flatpicking monster then you should look for a dreadnought-size guitar with a lot of projection and a balanced tone. If you’re a fingerstyle player, you may appreciate a smaller-bodied guitar with a softer top (like cedar). 

Guitars that are made from man-made materials and laminated wood will typically be more durable and hold up to the elements better than a guitar made from all solid wood. That is because they do not swell or shrink with changes in humidity or temperature. This is important if you’re constantly playing outdoors or are exposed to the elements. 

Acoustic guitars made of all solid woods will typically sound warmer and fuller than those crafted with man-made materials. They will, however, be more sensitive to changes in temperature and humidity. 

Learn more about Laminate vs. Solid Wood Acoustic Guitars here!

When you figure out the basics, you can then look at different brands that offer guitars that fall within your specifications. My advice is to play every single one that you are interested in (if you can). This will allow you to get a feel for the individual nuances that make them unique. 


FAQ

Are the Alvarez guitars any good?

Alvarez guitars are exceptional. They use high-quality materials to build their guitars, and they put a lot of attention into the fit and finish of their instruments. Each guitar that is shipped to the USA goes through a setup process before it is sent to the music shop.

What famous musicians play Alvarez guitars?

Famous musicians that play Alvarez guitars include:

-Jerry Garcia
-Ani DeFranco
-Jack Pearson
-Josh Turner
-Monte Montgomery
-Bob Weir
-Brad Davis

Are Alvarez Masterworks guitars good?

Alvarez Masterworks guitars are great guitars. They are Alvarez’s mid-grade line. 

Where Are Alvarez Guitars Made?

Alvarez guitars are primarily made in China while Alvarez-Yairi guitars are made in Japan.

Are Alvarez guitars made in Japan?

Only the Alvarez-Yairi guitars are made in Japan.

Why are Alvarez guitars so cheap?

Alvarez guitars are cheap because they are generally manufactured in China. The labor costs much less there which means that customers save money in the end.

Are Alvarez Yairi guitars good?

Alvarez-Yairi guitars are premium guitars. They rank up there with Martin, Gibson, and other high-end manufactured guitars.

Do Alvarez Guitars come with a case?

Most Alvarez guitars do not come with a case. These can be purchased separately, however.

Do Alvarez guitars have solid woods?

The more affordable Alvarez guitars will use laminated hardwoods except for solid Sitka spruce or cedar tops. Higher-end Alvarez and Alvarez-Yairi models are made from solid wood.

Does Alvarez manufacture electric guitars?

Alvarez no longer manufactures electric guitars. They manufactured electric guitars in the 1980s and 1990s. They abandoned their electric lineup in the late 1990s. 


Conclusion

One of the things that I love the most about Alvarez axes is the fact that they seem to always prove that a great guitar doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. They have proven this time and time again not only with me but also with many other musicians around the world. 

I have played Alvarez guitars live and in the studio since 2000, and they have paid for themselves. I never imagined that the $120 Alvarez RD8 that my father bought me in 2000 would be winning awards against Martins and boutique acoustics – some costing more than my Harley-Davidson. This goes to show you that you don’t even need a top-of-the-line Alvarez to sound good. 

I encourage everyone to check out what Alvarez has to offer. They continue to make some of the world’s best acoustic guitars without driving their customers to bankruptcy. Pick one up for yourself and see what I’m talking about. 

Happy pickin’ from all of us at Guitaristnextdoor.com! 

DL Shepherd

Darren has been playing guitar for over 25 years and teaching guitar since High-School. He fronted the metal band Suddenly Silence in the early 2000’s, and also achieved recognition as an award-winning bluegrass guitarist. A native of southwestern Virginia, and has shared the stage with many big-name acts from various genres. When he is not playing one of his many guitars, he can be found riding his Harley through the mountains of Virginia. Expertise: teaching guitars, electric guitars, acoustic guitars, guitar amplifiers, guide pedals, flatpicking, bluegrass, metal, rock, and blues.
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Teemu Suomala

As an electric guitar player and a guy with really small hands, Alvarez AF66 is, “The Top Alvarez Guitar” to me. But I would like to test Alvarez MD70EGB to see how full sound it can offer and how it compares to similar models from other brands.
What’s your favorite Alvarez?