78 Guitars With Gold Hardware – Acoustic & Electric

You are currently viewing 78 Guitars With Gold Hardware – Acoustic & Electric

Gold-plating on guitars hardware, especially on black guitar…It just looks stunning. Just beautiful. Takes my breath away. Every time. And you seem to have a similar taste…

This article is just what you need if you are planning on buying or just dreaming about guitars with gold-plated hardware. I gathered together the cream-of-the-crop guitars with gold hardware. Both acoustic and electric, plus I reveal my 3 favorites. If you have any questions, check the FAQ section of this article or leave a comment.

Let’s get started!

Note!: Guitars almost never have a solid gold hardware. That would make them super expensive. Most guitars have either gold-colored plating or real gold-plating on them. Same thing applies to guitars featured in this article. You find guitars with gold-colored hardware or gold-plated hardware. I use the term “gold hardware” to refer the both gold colored and gold plated hardware in this article.

photo reveals owner of guitaristnextdoor.com

Author: 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 also noticed that most guitar websites don’t do a really good job, 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 been fortunate to produce content for several large guitar websites, such as Songsterr, Musicnotes, GuitarGuitar, 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…).


21 Acoustic Guitars With Gold Hardware

If you are not ready to shell out close to $1k and prefer a Jumbo shape, but need something a bit smaller with a cutaway, Epiphone J-200 EC Studio Parlor is one of the best options. It’s got a real bone nut & saddle, comfortable Rounded Slim Taper C neck shape, Solid Spruce top, and versatile all-around tones.

Price Range Icon Meanings:

$= $275-599

$$= $600-899

$$$= $900-1199

$$$$= $1200-1799

$$$$$= $1800

*Consider all links in this post to be affiliate links. If you purchase, at no additional cost to you, we may earn a small commission. It helps us to keep the lights on, thanks! 🙂

ModelTopPickup-systemBody StylePrice RangeCheck Current Price (affiliate links)
Harley Benton HB Custom Line King-CE – Cheapest Acoustic Guitar With Gold-Colored HardwareSelected solid spruceFishman Presys II with integrated tunerJumbo, with cutaway$Thomann*
Luna Guitars Safari Vista Stallion Maple, Padauk, Quilted SapeleFishman Presys II PreampTravel, Dreadnought$SweetwaterThomann
Epiphone J-200 EC Studio Parlor – Excellent Jumbo ParlorSolid spruce topFishman Presys II with Sonicore PickupJumbo junior, with cutaway (Parlor sized)$SweetwaterThomann
Takamine GD51CE-NATSolid spruceTakamine TP-4TD preamp with built-in tunerDreadnought, with cutaway$Guitar CenterThomann
Takamine GN51CE-NAT – Best BudgetSolid spruceTakamine TP-4TD preamp with built-in tunerNEX with Cutaway (Jumbo style shape)$SweetwaterThomann
Gretsch G5021E Rancher Penguin Parlor – Great Budget ParlorSolid SpruceFishman Presys II pickup/preamp System with TunerParlor$SweetwaterThomann
Yamaha LS6M ARE ConcertSolid Engelmann Spruce with A.R.E. treatmentSRT Zero Impact PickupConcerto$SweetwaterThomann
Gretsch G5022CWFE Rancher Falcon JumboSolid SpruceFishman Sonicore and Isys+ PreampJumbo, with cutaway$$SweetwaterThomann
D’Angelico Excel Lexington Acoustic-electricSolid Sitka SpruceFishman SonitoneDreadnought$$$SweetwaterThomann
Yamaha LL16-12 ARE Original Jumbo – 12-StringSolid Engelmann Spruce with A.R.E. treatmentSRT Zero Impact pickupJumbo$$$SweetwaterThomann
Yamaha LL-TA TransAcoustic Dreadnought – Best Overall AcousticSolid Engelmann SpruceSystem 70 TransAcoustic preamp with piezo pickup and interior mounted actuatorDreadnought$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gibson Acoustic Songwriter Standard – Best Premium AcousticSolid Sitka SpruceFishman Prefix Plus-T Preamp, Under Saddle PickupDreadnought, with cutaway$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gibson L-00 Deluxe RosewoodSolid Sitka spruceLR Baggs VTC Under Saddle PickupParlor$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Taylor Builders Edition 652ce – 12-String – Find more great Taylor guitars hereSolid Sitka spruceES-2Grand Concert$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Guild D-55AAA Solid SpruceDreadnought$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gibson J-45 DeluxeSolid Sitka spruceLR Baggs VTC Under Saddle PickupJumbo$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ovation Adamas 2087GTUltra-thin Carbon FiberOP Pro StudioRoundback Deep Contour Cutaway$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gibson Acoustic Hummingbird DeluxeSolid Sitka spruceLR Baggs VTC Under Saddle PickupDreadnought$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gibson SJ-200 DeluxeSolid Sitka spruceLR Baggs VTC Under Saddle PickupJumbo$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Taylor K62ce Limited – 12-StringSolid Figured Hawaiian Koa topExpression System 2Grand Concert, Cutaway$$$$$Guitar CenterThomann
Gibson Acoustic Orianthi SJ-200AAA Solid Sitka SpruceLR BaggsSuper Jumbo$$$$$SweetwaterThomann

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57 Electric Guitars With Gold Hardware

Real bone nut, gold hardware (not solid gold of course), C neck shape, and Fender Designed Alnico Jazzmaster Single-coils…sounds pretty good right? Squier 40th Anniversary Gold Edition Jazzmaster is a stunning guitar with versatile single-coil tones, fun playability, and high value.

Price Range Icon Meanings:

$= $149-399

$$= $400-699

$$$= $700-1099

$$$$= $1100-1699

$$$$$= $1700

ModelPickupGolden Volume & Tone KnobsBody StylePrice RangeCheck Current Price (affiliate links)
Harley Benton S-620 TR Rock Series – Cheapest Electric Guitar With Gold Colored Hardware2 x Hi-Gain humbuckersYesStrat$Thomann*
Harley Benton ST-62CC MN3 x Roswell STA Alnico 5 single coilsNoStrat$Thomann
Harley Benton Victory Plus BK Vintage2 x Roswell LAF AlNiCo-5 vintage style humbuckersYesV$Thomann
Harley Benton SC-1000 SBK Progressive2 x Active HBZ Hi-Gain humbuckersNoSingle-Cut$Thomann
Harley Benton HB-35Plus2 x Roswell LAF AlNiCo 5 humbuckersNoSemi-Hollow$Thomann
Harley Benton DC-600 VI Vintage – 3 Humbuckers3 x Roswell LAF AlNiCo-5 vintage-style humbuckersNoSG$Thomann
Harley Benton DC-Custom2 x Roswell LAF AlNiCo-5 vintage-style humbuckersYesSG$Thomann
Ibanez GIO GRG220PA – Best Budget Electric2x Classic Elite humbuckersYesStrat$SweetwaterThomann
Harley Benton SC-DLX – Gotoh Tuners2 x Tesla VR-2 AlNiCo 5 humbuckersNoSingle-Cut$Thomann
Harley Benton Fusion-T HH2 x Alnico deluxe double coil humbuckerYesTele$Thomann
Harley Benton BigTone Trem2 x 9A5 P90 Single-coils & HA5 HumbuckerYesSemi-Hollow$Thomann
Jackson JS Series Rhoads MAH JS32 – Excellent V Shaped2 x Jackson High Output humbuckersYesV$$SweetwaterThomann
Squier 40th Anniversary Gold Edition Jazzmaster – Best Budget Offset Guitar2 x Fender Designed Alnico Single-coilNoJazzmaster$$SweetwaterThomann
Squier 40th Anniversary Gold Edition Stratocaster3 x Fender Designed Alnico Single-CoilsNoStratocaster$$SweetwaterThomann
ESP LTD EC-256 – Great for Metal2 ESP LH-150 (B & N) humbuckers (coil-split)NoSingle-Cut$$SweetwaterThomann
Squier 40th Anniversary Gold Edition Telecaster2 x Fender Designed AlNiCo Single CoilsYesTelecaster$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez Artcore AS73G2 x Classic Elite humbuckersNoc$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez AG75G – Great Budget Semi-Hollow2 x Classic Elite humbuckersNoSemi-Hollow$$SweetwaterThomann
Sire Larry Carlton L72 x Alnico 5 humbuckersNoSingle-Cut$$SweetwaterThomann
Epiphone SG Custom2 x Alnico Classic Pro humbuckersNoSG$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez Artcore AR4202 x Super 58 humbuckersNoAR – Double cut$$SweetwaterThomann
Jackson SLXDX SoloistDuncan Designed HB-103B & HB-103N humbuckersYesModern Strat$$SweetwaterThomann
Gretsch G2410TG Streamliner – Great High Value Hollowbody2 x BroadTron BT-2SNoHollow Body $$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez Artcore AF95FM2 x Super 58 humbuckersNoHollow Body $$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez Artcore Expressionist AS93FM2 x Super 58 humbuckersNoSemi-Hollow$$SweetwaterThomann
Epiphone Les Paul Custom Koa – Stunning Les PaulEpiphone ProBucker-2 & ProBucker-3 humbuckersYesSingle-Cut$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez High Performance RG421HPFMDiMarzio The Tone Zone & DiMarzio Air Norton humbuckersYesModern Strat$$$SweetwaterThomann
Epiphone Emperor Swingster2 x Epiphone SwingBucker humbuckersNoHollow Body $$$SweetwaterThomann
Jackson SC Pro MonarkhSeymour Duncan JB SH-4 & Seymour Duncan 59 SH-1N humbuckersYesSingle-Cut$$$SweetwaterThomann
Jackson X Series Rhoads RRX24Seymour Duncan AHB1BN & AHB-1B humbuckersYesV$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez RG420HPFM – Best Overall ElectricDiMarzio The Tone Zone & DiMarzio Air Norton humbuckersYesModern Strat$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez SEW761FM2 x DiMarzio True Velvet single coils &1 x DiMarzio Tone Zone humbuckersNoModern Strat$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gretsch G5655TG Electromatic Center Block Jr.2 x Black Top Broad’Tron humbuckersYesSemi-Hollow$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gretsch G5422TG Electromatic – Best Hollowbody2 x FT-5E FilterTron humbuckersYesHollow Body $$$SweetwaterThomann
Charvel Pro-Mod San Dimas Style 1 HHSeymour Duncan JB TB-4 & Seymour Duncan ’59 SH-1N humbuckersYesModern Strat$$$SweetwaterThomann
ESP LTD EC-1000 Vintage BlackActive EMG 81 & EMG 60 humbuckersYesSingle-Cut$$$SweetwaterThomann
Jackson SL2Q MAH Pro Soloist Seymour Duncan Distortion TB-6 & Seymour Duncan Distortion SH-6N humbuckersYesModern Strat$$$$SweetwaterThomann
ESP LTD Phoenix-1000Seymour Duncan Custom & Seymour Duncan Phat Cat humbuckersYesPhoenix$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Kramer Guitars Jersey Star1 x Seymour Duncan SH-2 & 2 x SH-4 humbuckersYesStrat style$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Fender Tash Sultana Stratocaster – Best Stratocaster2 x Yosemite Strat Single Coils & 1 x Double Tap Humbucker NoStratocaster$$$$SweetwaterThomann
D’Angelico Deluxe Bedford2 x Seymour Duncan STR52-1 nickel single coils & 1 x Seymour Duncan SM-1b nickel mini humbuckerNoDeluxe Bedford Semi-Hollow (offset)$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Schecter Synyster Gates Custom S – For Avenged Sevenfold FansSustainiac (bridge) and Schecter USA Synyster Gates signature humbuckerYesSynyster Gates $$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez THBB10 Tim Henson2 x DiMarzio Notorious alnico single coils & 1 x DiMarzio Notorious ceramic humbuckerYesModern Strat$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Guild Starfire VI2 x Guild LB-1 dual-coil humbuckersNoSemi-Hollow $$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez Steve Vai Signature Premium JEM7VP2 x DiMarzio Evolution humbuckers & Evolution single-coilNoModern Strat$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez RG5170B – Best Premium ElectricFishman Fluence Modern ceramic humbucker & Fishman Fluence Single Width ceramic & Fishman Fluence Modern AlNiCo humbuckerNoModern Strat$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
ESP E-II Eclipse DB Vintage BlackActive EMG 60 & 81 humbuckersYesSingle-Cut$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ibanez Lari Basilio Signature LB1Seymour Duncan Lari Basilio single coil & Seymour Duncan Lari Basilio single-coil & Seymour Duncan Lari Basilio humbuckerYesDouble cut$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gretsch G6131T-62 Vintage 2 x TV Jones Classic humbuckersYesChambered Double cut$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gretsch G6136TG White Falcon2 x FT-67 FilterTron humbuckersYesHollow Body $$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Ernie Ball Music Man Valentine Tremolo1 Music Man Custom Wound single coil in humbucker format & 1 Custom Wound humbuckerYesDouble cut$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Fender Custom Shop Limited-edition ’62 Bone Tone Stratocaster 3 x Custom Shop Hand-wound Bont-Tone Single-coilNoStratocaster$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gibson Flying V Custom490R & 498T humbuckersNoFlying V$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gibson Firebird Custom490R & 498T humbuckersNoFirebird$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gibson Custom 1963 Les Paul SG Custom Reissue w/ Maestro Vibrola VOS3 x Custombucker Alnico III humbuckersNoSG$$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gibson Custom 1959 ES-355 Reissue 2 x Custombucker AlNiCo III humbuckersNoSemi-Hollow $$$$$SweetwaterThomann
Gibson 58 Korina Flying V – True Premium Guitar2 Custombucker Alnico III humbuckers (unpotted)NoFlying V$$$$$SweetwaterThomann

6 Best Guitars With Gold Hardware – My Favorites

Best Budget Acoustic Guitar – Takamine GN51CE-NAT

What I like

  • Spruce top paired with walnut back & sides provides articulate and crips tones with tight low end
  • Stunning Gold Die-Cast tuners
  • Smooth playability
  • Split saddle-design can increase intonation
  • Great build quality and high value

What I don’t like

  • Synthetic bone nut & saddle

Who is it for?

If you are after a great quality budget acoustic guitar with smooth playability, gold tuners, and articulate sound, Takamine GN51CE-NAT is a top-notch choice. Its got a Synthetic bone nut & saddle, which is a bummer, but otherwise it’s as good as budget acoustic guitar gets.

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Best Overall Acoustic Guitar – Yamaha LL-TA TransAcoustic Dreadnought

What I like

  • Onboard reverb and chorus unlock endless tone options
  • Solid ARE treated Spruce top an solid Rosewood back & sides
  • Great all-around full dreadnought sound without effects
  • Comfortable to play
  • Usually comes with a gig bag

What I don’t like

  • Urea saddle & nut feel cheap for this price
  • Playability is great, but not outstanding

Who is it for?

If you are after a versatile acoustic guitar with comfortable playability and all solid wood body, Yamaha LL-TA TransAcoustic is a great choice. And the best thing? Onboard reverb and chorus. This separates this Yamaha from the rest. These effects make it a truly outstanding instrument with endless tonal possibilities.

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Best Premium Acoustic Guitar – Gibson Acoustic Songwriter Standard

What I like

  • Solid Sitka Spruce top paired with solid Rosewood back & sides provide crisp & balanced sound with great projection
  • Tusq saddle and nut give a solid intonation
  • Round neck shape feels comfortable
  • Grover Rotomatic tuners hold the tune well
  • High-quality Fishman Prefix Plus-T Preamp with Under Saddle Pickup
  • Usually comes with a hardshell case
  • Cutaway adds versatility to playing

What I don’t like

  • Cutaway can decrease the fullness of the sound a bit (non-cutaway Songwriter’s available too)

Who is it for?

If you are after a premium-level acoustic guitar with all the premium qualities (Tusq nut, Grover tuners, etc.) and rock-solid tones, Gibson Acoustic Songwriter Standard is one of the best choices. It usually comes with a hardshell case, it’s fun & smooth to play, and yes, it has stunning gold hardware.

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Best Budget Electric Guitar – Ibanez GIO GRG220PA 

What I like

  • Flat 15.7″ fretboard is effortless to rip through
  • Classic Elite humbuckers offer the best budget Ibanez tones to me
  • GRG neck is slim & smooth to shred
  • Offers excellent value for the money
  • Gold hardware looks awesome

What I don’t like

  • Stock hardware might not please everyone (for this price it pleases me)

Who is it for?

If you are after a budget electric guitar that offers versatile tones and easy playability, Ibanez GIO GRG220PA is an excellent choice. Classic Elite Humbuckers were an instant crush for me, and I love the familiar & smooth Ibanez playability. It’s a cheap electric guitar, so everything might not be perfect every time, but for the price, it’s an excellent axe.

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Best Overall Electric Guitar – Ibanez RG420HPFM

What I like

  • DiMarzio humbuckers offer really crunchy & fat distortion but are also surprisingly versatile
  • Thin Wizard III neck is slim, smooth, and fast as a neck gets (great shape for small hands)
  • Offers really high value for the money
  • Coil-split adds versatility
  • Great all-around quality
  • Slim body

What I don’t like

  • Tusq, Graphite, or even a real Bone nut would make this guitar even better (increases sustain and overall tone)

Who is it for?

Ibanez RG420HPFM (and RG series overall) is one of my favorite guitars right now. It offers really smooth playability because of its Wizard III neck (my small hands love it). It’s equipped with great-sounding DiMarzio humbuckers (with a coil-split). And overall it offers a great bang for the buck (it could cost a lot more).

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Best Premium Electric Guitar – Ibanez RG5170B

What I like

  • Fishman Fluence pickups and the fact that you can change pickup voicing adds a ton of versatility to your arsenal
  • Super Wizard HP neck feels extremely slim and fast playing
  • Great quality and smooth to use Ibanez Lo-Pro Edge Locking Tremolo
  • Premium-level Gotoh tuners hold the pitch
  • Usually comes with a hardshell case
  • Could cost a lot more

What I don’t like

  • Still out of budget for many players

Who is it for?

If you are after a premium level but reasonably price electric guitar with all the premium features (Gotoh tuners, Fishman Fluence pickups, etc.), extremely slim & smooth playing neck, and versatile tones, Ibanez RG5170B is a top choice. It could cost lot more, it usually comes with a hardshell case, and golden hardware looks stunning.

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FAQ

Does Gold Hardware Wear Off Easier?

Some cheap guitars can have a gold-colored hardware, some guitars have a thin gold plating, and some guitars hardware can even have solid gold in them (rare).

Solid gold is a soft heavy metal, so it’s more brone to dings and dents.

Gold plating is usually really thin, and there are different kinds of gold plating chemistries available. And in general, gold plating does wear off easier than other platings. The reason being that gold is soft and expensive, and only really thin layer of it is used as a plating.

If yo get a cheap guitar with gold-colored hardware… well, let just say that I wouldn’t expect exceptionally great hardware plating quality from cheap guitars. They will wear off at some point.

Personlly, I don’t mind a little wear and tear. I treat my guitars good, but I do play them, and if this causes wearing, it’s no problem for me. Just playt the guitar my friend!

Is Gold Harwader Harder to Take Care Of?

Gold plating does wear off more easily than most other hardware platings and because of this it can be a bit harder to take care off. One of the worst things is to left the dirt, grease, and dust just sit on it. All this just speeds tarnishing and wearing off process.

Here’s what is recommended to do if you want to keep your gold plated hardware in as good as possible condition!

  • Wipe the hardware with a clean and dry cloth a couple of times a week and after every playing session.

This will keep the hardware clean as possible and will minimize tarnishing and wearing off. This doesn’t guarantee that your gold or gold plated hardware will stay like new for decades, but it helps to keep it in the best condition possible.

Can You Age/Relic Gold Hardware?

Note! Do aging at your own risk and use chemicals with caution. Don’t drink them, don’t soak your hand to them, keep the kids and pets aways from them and don’t apply too much to the hardware.

Yes you can. Applying wet Ferric chloride on hardware is one way to do so. Ferric chloride is corrosive for gold and will cause it to look older than it really is. It basically speeds up the tarnishing process of the gold.

These videos reveals more:

YouTube video

Using vinegar fumes is a one trick you can’t try too:

YouTube video


Conclusion on Guitars With Gold Hardware

My heart was racing when looking at these guitars…instant crush followed by another and another instant crush…haha. While I like guitars with all different hardware colors, gold-colored hardware just has a special place in my heart. And I like how it looks when it ages too!

I hope this article helped you out, and maybe you even decided to get one of the guitars featured. If you have any questions, leave a comment, I and the GND team are here for you.

Now go, my son, and Rock!

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