A guitar brand list is in alphabetical order and with a short description for each manufacturer. Some of the guitar brands are no longer in business. We have made a note of that where applicable.
guitar brands list
Guitar brand list
10s Guitars is a smaller Chinese company focusing on electric guitars. In fact, they have a wide variety of choices, including high-end customized instruments.
9stein was an experimental brand developed and made in the 1990s. Furthermore, these were 9-string guitars with unusual bodies and integrated tuners.
A&F was a short-lived band from the early 2000s. Former Fender Custom Shop luthiers led it.
This now-defunct brand focused solely on acoustic guitars. Furthermore, Japan’s Yasuma Musical Instrument Company made Canton instruments.
Abasi Concepts guitars are the creators of exceptional Hi-end custom guitars. Their primary focus is on supreme ergonomic qualities.
JG Abbott founded Abbott guitars. A rare English guitar brand, In fact, Abbott also manufactured banjos.
American builder Jeff Abel founded Abel Axe in the 1990s. These were aluminum instruments that featured holes in the body. Furthermore, the initial run was only 250 guitars. Moreover, Jeff focused on custom orders only.
A Californian brand that outsourced its manufacturing to Indonesia. Furthermore, they made beginner-friendly acoustic and electric guitars.
Abstract was a brand by luthier Ed Roman. These were all high-end custom-made solid-body electric guitars with unconventional body shapes.
Abyss was a brand started by Kevin L. Pederson. Making custom high-end solid-body and hollow-body electric guitars. The company became Pederson Custom Guitars in 2008.
In short, A.C. Guitars is a one-person guitar builder shop in Scotland. Furthermore, it’s been active since 2006.
Scott and Greg Lienhard founded Acacia in 2011. They manufacture modern-style solid-body electric guitars and basses.
In short, Academy was a budget-friendly acoustic guitar brand. They were all manufactured in China and Taiwan.Accent
Accent is an acoustic guitar brand of the Saga Music company. In fact, the company focus on affordable steel-string guitars.
A.C.E., or Acoustic Classical Electric, manufactured their guitars in New Hampshire. Furthermore, they focused on nylon-string electro-acoustic guitars.
Acero is a Korean manufacturer. It seems that the brand is no longer active. However, the guitars are still highly valued by collectors.
Started by Angelo Chiarappa, Achia is a small Italian-based guitar builder shop. In fact, it primarily focuses on Super-Strat copy guitars.
Ackley is an American brand started by Scott Ackley in 1979. In addition, Scott primarily focuses on unconventional artistic designs.
In short, the Acosta Music & Manufacturing Company is a now-defunct Texas-based guitar brand.
Despite its name, Acoustic was a brand known for electric guitars. In fact, Jimi Hendrix used one of their models, the Black Widow.
Initially, high-end Ovation guitars, Adams is now owned by the Kaman Music Corporation.
Starting their work in 1944 in Germany, Admira is one of the market’s largest nylon-string classical guitar brands.
Aegilium is a small Italian manufacturer of classical and steel-string acoustic guitars. In fact, they also perform musical instrument restoration.
AEolian Guitars was started by Paul McNamara, making unique custom-order electric guitars. In addition, the company appears to be inactive at the time of writing.
They initially began building guitar amps. Germany’s A.E.R. also had a Korean-made guitar line for a while.
The airline used to be a famous USA-based brand in the 1950s and the 1960s. Furthermore, Valco manufactured instruments. Eastwood Guitars now owns the brand.
This American-based brand is known for its high-end custom-order electric guitars. Furthermore, Owsley Stanley started the business in Grateful Dead’s rehearsal room in 1969.
Alvarez was established in 1965 in the U.S. Furthermore; they later became widely known for acoustic guitars outsourced overseas.
Ampeg is still active as a bass amp brand. However, they also manufactured 6-string electric guitars and other instruments.
Starting their work in the 1950s, Antoria is a U.K. brand. Tim Gentle Music now owns them. In addition, the guitars are now manufactured offshore in Korea and China.
Founded in 1956 in Japan, the Aria brand is still an active builder of guitars. In addition, they manufacture various models of acoustic and electric guitars and basses.
Aristides is a mid-sized electric guitar brand from the Netherlands. In addition, they focus on high-end composite-material instruments.
Artist was originally an Australian-based electric brand. Furthermore, they outsource their production to China and offer instruments worldwide through online orders.
New Zealand’s Ash Customworks has been manufacturing acoustic and electric guitars since 1992. In addition, founder Adrian Hamilton also started the Radian brand.
Ashton is an Australian brand of budget-friendly guitars. In fact, they now outsource their manufacturing of instruments overseas.
Based in New York, Babicz makes high-end acoustic guitars. Founded in 2003, they’re also selling licensable technology for guitars.
Baldwin is an old brand started by Dwight Hamilton Baldwin in the 1860s. Furthermore, they became known for guitars and amps in the 1960s. Gibson acquired the brand in 2001.
Bill Barker began his work in the 1960s, handcrafting archtop jazz guitars. In addition, it is believed that he made around 120 guitars in total, so they’re scarce.
Founded in 2006, the company’s C.E.O. is Luthier Hugues Beaulieu. In fact, they mostly do custom-order classical guitars but are also doing instrument repairs.
Bigsby is still known for its bridges and hardware. However, they also made electric guitars and lap steel guitars.
Black Diamond Guitars
Black Diamond is a custom electric guitar shop founded by Mike Binder in 2000. Furthermore, these are custom-order instruments with innovative and unusual designs.
In short, B.C. Rich is a brand best-known for heavy metal-style guitars. As a matter of fact, they’re one of the biggest names in the business.
Israel-based luthiers Eliran Barashi & Yotam Goldstein started B&G guitars. In addition, they focus primarily on hollow-body electrics but also have basses and acoustic guitars.
Focusing on acoustic guitars and ukulele, In addition, Blackbird is a high-end brand started in 2005 in California.
The Blade brand was established in the early 1980s by Gary Levinson. The company is for its unique switching systems. In fact, they are still active to date in building custom guitars.
Blue Eagle Guitars
Initially starting as a refinishing shop in 2002, In addition, Blue Eagle also started making their carbon-fiber jazz-oriented guitars.
Bohemian was started in the U.S. by two brothers from South Africa. As a matter of fact, their main goal is to make functional and straightforward instruments from scrap materials.
In short, Bond Electraglide was a short-lived Scottish brand that made carbon fiber guitars in the 1980s. In addition, they built approximately 1200 instruments in total.
Founded by Jon Hill, Bootleg Guitars manufactures custom-order electric guitars and basses. They’re based in Ohio, U.S.A.
Ex-Fender executive Keith Brawley started the company in the early 2000s. Furthermore, these were affordable instruments made in Korea. In addition, Keith later sold his guitar designs to Luna.
Breedlove makes acoustic guitars, acoustic basses, and ukuleles based in Bend, Oregon. In addition, they’ve been active since 1990.
In short, Burns originally started in 1959. The brand was relaunched in 2021. In addition, the company builds vintage-style electric guitars.
Carmine Street Guitars
Carmine Street Guitars is a New York-based custom shop. Furthermore, they manufacture guitars from old used wood.
The legendary electronics manufacturer is also known for its electric guitars. In addition, these mainly were MIDI controllers or cheap synth guitars. In fact, they also had regular electric guitars with MIDI pickups.
Cigano is a cheaper alternative to Saga’s swing jazz acoustic brand. Gitane as part of Saga Music.
Founded in Arkansas City in 2012 but later moved to Georgia. Furthermore, they manufacture vintage-style electric guitars with some modern features.
Campbell American Guitars
They were initially Greene and Campbell Guitars in 2002. In addition, they built some unconventional designs inspired by vintage electric guitars.
After working for Jackson and Charvel division in Japan, Itaru Kann started Caparison in 1995. It currently operates as an independent brand. Furthermore, these are high-performance guitars in the style of Super Strats.
Martin is one of the longest-running and well-known acoustic guitar brands. In addition, they’ve also set the industry standards for their acoustic guitars. Furthermore, many are some of the best-quality guitars on the market.
Rob Chapman started the company in collaboration with Barnes & Mullins. In addition, Chapman guitars are manufactured overseas but still retain the desired qualities of high-end instruments.
Charvel originally started in 1974, mainly making Super-Strat guitars. Furthermore, Fender owns the brand, but they still retain their signature style.
Cole Clark Guitars
Australian luthier Cole Clark started his work in 2001, manufacturing conventional designs with some of his own twists. In addition, the brand builds mostly acoustic and Thinline electric guitars.
Started by Bill Collings in the 1970s, the company manufactures various high-end acoustic and electric guitars. Furthermore, the brand remains active even though Bill died in 2017.
In short, founded in 1997, Cordoba originally made classical nylon-sting guitars. In addition, they’re still active and also make ukuleles and steel-string guitars.
Korean-based brand Cort mainly focuses on cheaper and mid-priced alternatives to the more expensive and well-known famous brands. In addition, there’s a wide array of instruments and models; however, they’re best known for their electric guitars.
Ben Crowe started it in 2005. Crimson Guitars makes high-end electric guitars and D.I.Y. electric guitar kits.
D’Alegria started in 2003 as a custom bass guitar manufacturer based in Brazil. Furthermore, they also now make electric guitars and export their instruments worldwide.
The legendary guitar maker D’Angelico started working in the 1930s. John D’Angelico was the founder. However, the company is now in the hands of new owners.
Daisy Rock Girl Guitars
Founded by Tish Ciravolo, wife of Schecter President Michael Ciravolo. Daisy Rock Girl Guitars focuses on alternative female-oriented acoustic and electric guitar designs. Furthermore, the company is also a subsidiary of K.M.C. Music.
Danelectro was founded in 1947 and eventually closed in 1969. The company was revived in the 1990s. Furthermore, it still manufactures some of its original guitars, first made in the 1960s.
Jimmy D’Aquisto is a luthier known for his work with D’Angelico. In addition, he made a minimal run of archtop guitars under the D’Aquisto brand between 1973 and 1984.
Usually associated with metal music, Dean has been active since 1977. Dave Mustaine, Kerry King, and Dimebag Darrell are some of the names used for their guitars.
Diamond traces its roots in D.B.Z. Guitars were started in 2008 by Dean Zelinsky, Terry Martin, and Jeff Diamant. In addition, the brand changed its name to Diamond and made guitars and amps overseas while based in the U.S.
Dobro is an old resonator guitar started by John Dopyera in the 1920s. Furthermore, the name “dobro” is also used for wooden-body single-cone resonator guitars. Gibson now owns Dobro.
Michael Dolan started his custom guitar shop in 1977. He still manufactures all kinds of electric guitars and basses as custom orders.
Donner is a Chinese brand known for affordable pedals, amps, guitars, and other instruments. They’re a part of Guangzhou Jinpin Electronic Commerce and are sold worldwide.
German boutique guitar brand Dorian was founded by Andreas Zinsmeister in 2012. In addition, they have some unusual, unique designs. As of this writing, the brand does not appear to be active.
Duesenberg is a German brand of high-end custom guitars. In addition, they also manufacture basses, lap-steel guitars, and guitar amps.
PA and audio equipment brand Dynacord used to make guitars in their early days. In addition, some of their old instruments are popular among collectors.
Eastman is one of the rare Chinese-based guitar brands with higher-end instruments. Furthermore, the company started in 1992 as an orchestral instrument manufacturer. They first began making guitars in 2004.
Established in 2001, Eastwood manufactures low- to mid-priced guitars, basses, ukuleles, and lap steel guitars. In addition, they’re based in China and Korea.
Christopher J. Eccleshall was a luthier who made guitars and other instruments. In addition, his guitars are getting hard to find these days.
Patrick James Eggle founded Patrick Eggle Guitars in the early 1990s. Later on, he downsized to only smaller orders. He made some attractive models for Black Sabbath’s Tony Iommi as well.
El Dégas was a Japanese brand that worked in the 1970s. In addition, they were one of those Japanese brands that made Fender and Gibson copies.
Founded way back in 1873, Epiphone became a subsidiary of Gibson in 1957. In addition, it’s still under their ownership, and they mostly make cheaper variants of Gibson models.
In 1975, a Japanese company E.S.P. manufactured electric guitars and electric basses. They’re known for their high-end instruments, popular in metal music.
Oliviero Pigini founded Eko in Italy in 1959. For a while, they also made some guitars for Vox. They are still active today and manufacture both acoustic and electric guitars.
Electrical started working in 2003 and are known for their aluminum necks. In addition, some of their instruments also feature aluminum bodies.
Ernie Ball Music Man
Ernie Ball initially started his work as a guitar retailer. In the 1980s, he purchased a small guitar company, Music Man. They still manufacture high-end guitars that are some of the most respected on the market.
In short, Encore is a brand of cheaper entry-level guitars. In addition, they’re primarily available in the U.K.
Stephen Paul, also known as Esteban, is a classical guitarist. He associated his brand with acoustic guitars, electric guitars, and amps manufactured in China.
Eddie Van Halen started EVH in 2007. The brand is best known for its Wolfgang electric guitars. In addition, they also manufacture amps, cabinets, and accessories, all of which were designed by Eddie himself.
Falcon was a subsidiary of J.H.S. and manufactured entry-level acoustic guitars, hollow-body electric guitars, and ukuleles.
American electric guitar brand Fano started sometime in the 2000s. In addition, they mainly produce high-end solid-body and Thinline guitars but started a cheaper line in 2016.
Farida is a Chinese brand and a Grand Reward Education & Entertainment subsidiary. They have affordable lines of acoustic and electric guitars, as well as ukuleles.
Jonathan Law started feline in the 1990s. In addition, they operate as a guitar repair shop and high-end custom guitar builders.
Fender is one of the leading and most influential guitar brands on the market. Founder Leo Fender-designed Telecaster and Stratocaster in the 1950s. These famous guitars remain almost unchanged to this day.
Fernandes originally started in Japan in the 1960s, making flamenco guitars. Later on, they made electric guitars. They had a U.S.A. division but are now based only in Japan, mainly focusing on electric guitars.
Fibonacci came from a Korean company Peerless Guitars from Korea and their development department in the U.K. They manufacture hollow-body electric and acoustic guitars.
Flaxwood is a Finland-based company that makes guitars out of their unique material. It’s a combination of natural fibers and plastics. They were formed in 2005 and are still active.
Floyd Rose is a company famous for its locking tremolo bridges. However, they have three electric guitar series, one of which is still made in the U.S.
In short, Fodera was established in 1983. They manufacture custom electric basses and guitars with an accent on stylish designs.
Best known for their guitar hardware, The European brand Framus also makes electric and acoustic guitars. As a matter of fact, they are usually mid-to high-priced instruments.
Freedom Custom Guitar Research
Freedom is a small Japanese brand that’s currently inactive. They were known for their high-end instruments. You can still find some of their stuff on the used market.
A freshman is a Scottish guitar brand founded in 2002. They outsource their manufacturing to China. They focus on acoustic guitars and ukuleles.
FujiGen is a legendary Japanese manufacturer famous for making instruments for several companies, including Ibanez.
Furch comes from the Czech Republic. They’ve been on the market since the 1970s. As a matter of fact, these days, they focus solely on high-quality acoustic guitars.
South African brand Gallotone was founded back in the 1950s. They’re currently not active. However, they were famous for their quality acoustic guitars.
Canadian acoustic guitar company Garrison Guitars was known for their Active Bracing System or A.B.S. Gibson acquired the brand in 2007, but they haven’t done much with it.
Giannini is an old instrument brand started by Italian luthier Tranquilo Giannini in Brazil in 1900. They still operate and manufacture electric guitars, acoustic guitars, basses, and other instruments.
Gibbon was one of those Japanese Gibson and Fender rip-off brands from the 1970s. You can still find their instruments among collectors.
Alongside Fender, Gibson is one of the most prominent and most influential guitar companies on the market. Les Paul, SG, Explorer, and Firebird are just some of their guitars. In addition, they also own Epiphone and numerous other brands.
Girl was an American brand started by James C. Larsen. These were vintage-style guitars with an accent on unique design. As a matter of fact, they’re rare these days. However, they are highly valued among collectors.
Saga Music owns Gitane. They manufacture swing-style jazz acoustic guitars with squared cutaways.
Allan Gittler manufactured his unique electric guitars made entirely out of steel. The idea was to abandon all traditional instrument traits and keep all the functional parts. They’re highly valued among collectors.
In short, Godin is a Canadian brand of high-end electric, acoustic, and bass guitars. In addition, they’re famous for their electro-acoustic models.
Gordon-Smith was founded in the 1970s. They manufacture high-end stock and custom electric guitars.
Greco was a Japanese guitar brand that began in the 1960s. They were the ones who made those Fender and Gibson rip-off guitars. In addition, they were good at it, as a matter of fact. However, they did have their unique designs.
Present on the market since the 1880s, Gretsch manufactures various instruments, including electric guitars. As a matter of fact, they’re famous for their hollow-body designs.
Founded in 1952, Guild is still active, making high-end acoustic and electric guitars. In addition, they’re inspired mainly by Gibson and have unique designs like the T-Bird.
Guyatone is an old Japanese brand founded in the 1930s. They made instruments for other brands, including Ibanez. They also had, and still have, their guitar models.
Hagström is a Swedish instrument brand founded in the 1920s. They began making guitars in the 1950s. These days, we still see vintage-style designs from Hagström.
Hallmark was founded in the 1960s. They are known for experimental designs, and they still manufacture guitars in smaller numbers.
Hamer originally started as an American manufacturer. Kaman Music Corporation acquired the brand in the 1980s, which Fender later purchased. As a matter of fact, Hamer was reintroduced in 2013 as a cheaper brand.
In short, a house brand of German retailed Thomann, Harley Benton, offers cheap yet reliable guitars made overseas.
Harmony is an old brand founded in the 1890s. In the mid-20th century, they made electric guitars in Chicago.
Heritage was founded by ex-Gibson employees from a closed Kalamazoo factory in 1984. As a matter of fact, they manufacture Gibson-style electric guitars.
Established in the 1880s, Karl Höfner’s business focused on violins. In addition, they now manufacture various instruments, including guitars.
Hohner is an old German instrument brand. They began making guitars in the 1950s. However, they’ve stopped in more recent years.
Hondo was an American company that made low or high-end Gibson and Fender copies. Manufacturing was outsourced overseas. As a matter of fact, the brand was acquired by I.M.C. and was officially replaced by J.B. Player in 2005.
Romanian brand Hora manufactured various instruments. They were one of the guitar manufacturers behind the Iron Curtain.
Hoyer is an old German instrument brand that began in the 19th century. In addition, they offered classical guitars and introduced electric ones in the 1950s. Ritter Brands now own Hoyer.
In short, Humming Bird is Tokai’s sub-brand of guitars, made from 1967 to now.
Huss & Dalton Guitar Co.
Huss & Dalton is a small American company. In addition, they currently focus on acoustic guitars.
The famous Japanese brand Ibanez is a part of Hoshino Gakki. The company as we know it started in the 1950s and is renowned for its solid-body electric guitars of all price levels.
Jackson is a famous brand founded in 1980 by Grover Jackson. Fender bought the brand in 2002. In addition, they now make Jackson guitars in the U.S.A., Mexico, and China.
James Tyler started his eponymous brand in the 1970s. In addition, they’re known for unusual headstock designs and high-quality electric guitars.
John Diggins, who worked for John Birch, founded Jaydee in the 1970s. It’s a small high-end shop that still operates. They’re famous for making guitars for Tony Iommi.
Jay Turser is now a subsidiary of Davitt & Hanser. They currently manufacture cheaper guitars in China.
Jet was founded in the 1990s. They’re a smaller shop with a limited product range of high-end guitars.
John Birch Guitars
John Birch was a famous guitar builder, mostly known for his work with Tony Iommi. The small but high-end brand still exists and is run by John Carling.
Jon Kammerer Guitars
Jon Kammer started his brand in 1999. He still makes high-end custom-order electric and acoustic guitars.
Old Czechoslovakian brand Jolana was one of the biggest behind the Iron Curtain. In the 1950s, they began to export to the West.
The J.S. Bogdanovich shop started its work in 1996 in California. They specialize in high-end custom-order classical guitars.
Kalamazoo was Gibson’s sub-brand in the 1930s and 1940s. They made cheaper archtop guitars.
Kawai is an old Japanese instrument brand. They manufactured electric guitars from the 1950s to the 1980s.
Kay Musical Instrument Company worked from 1931 to 1968. They also made guitars. Jack White popularized the old cheap acoustic guitar models among collectors.
Kiesel is a high-end electric guitar brand. They trace roots to the 1940s, eventually becoming Carvin and emerging as an independent brand in 2015.
Klara was a German brand that worked from 1887 to 1982. They made various instruments, including electric guitars.
Saul Koll began his guitar-making business in 1986. In addition, the brand still exists today, and they manufacture high-end guitars.
Founded in 1976, Kramer initially worked until 1990. Gibson acquired the brand in the 1990s. They now make mid to high-end electric guitars.
KxK is a small Californian brand of high-end custom guitars. In addition, they also made a unique model for K.K. Downing of Judas Priest.
Lado is a small guitar brand started by Joe Kovacic in 1973. As a matter of fact, the shop is still active and makes custom-order electric guitars.
In short, French company Lâg now makes cheaper entry-level acoustic guitars outsourced overseas.
Lakland is a brand famous for its quality bass guitars. However, they also make solid-body electric guitars. As a matter of fact, they’ve been active since the 1990s.
Jean Larrivée started his work in the 1960s. Making acoustic and electric guitars, the brand currently operates from California.
Swedish brand Levin went back to 1900 and was famous for using ancient wood on their guitars. Martin owned them from 1973 to 1981. In addition, it operated as a small brand until 2009.
Lichty started as a small-scale production in North Carolina. Jay Lichty makes a minimal number of high-end acoustic guitars every year.
Started by Charles Lindert, the small company handcrafted guitars in the Washington state with the famous “thumbs-up” headstock. As a matter of fact, they eventually moved production to Korea before going out of business in 2002.
Founded in 1996, Line 6 is best-known as an effect and amp manufacturer. However, they also make electric guitars.
Guitar builder Mike Lipe started his brand in 2000 after years of experience in Ibanez’s custom shop. As a matter of fact, he still makes high-end custom-order guitars.
Lotus was a cheap guitar brand operating from the 1970s to the 1990s. They were made in Korea, Japan, and India and were affordable alternatives to classic Gibson and Fender models.
Lowden is a U.K. brand that makes high-end acoustic and electric guitars. As a matter of fact, one of the famous players is Ed Sheeran.
Luna is Dean’s subsidiary that designs acoustic guitars and other acoustic instruments and outsources production to Korea and China.
In short, Lyle is a now-defunct Japanese brand that primarily focused on Gibson copies in the 1970s.
Maestro is a Singapore-based company. In addition, they mainly make high-end acoustic guitars and ukuleles.
Maestro (by Gibson)
Gibson used to sell cheaper guitars under the Maestro brand. As a matter of fact, it was a subsidiary brand with manufacturing outsourced to China.
Mann was a cheaper brand manufactured in Japan and Korea in the 1970s and the 1980s.
Maton has been an active Australian brand since the 1940s. In addition, they now make high-end acoustic and electric guitars in Melbourne and have their custom shop.
Matsumoku was initially a woodworking company that eventually started making violins and guitars. Some guitars were made under the Matsumoku brand, but today they are known as Westone.
Polish brand of high-end custom guitars and basses, Mayones, was established in 1982. As a matter of fact, they’re currently one of the most famous handcrafted brands.
Micro-Frets was started by Ralph Jones and then later resurrected after his death in the 1970s. As a matter of fact, the brand was revived again in 2017, focusing solely on vintage-style electric guitars.
Modulus Graphite was founded by aerospace engineer and musician Geoff Gould. The company has focused solely on bass guitars with carbon necks.
Texas-based Moniker was founded in 2011. In addition, they offered unique guitars through their website’s custom design orders. In addition, it appears to be no longer active, however.
Mosrite was founded in 1956. They still work to this day. Players, including Johnny Ramone and Kurt Cobain, play Mosrite guitars.
Founded in 2002, all MotorAve guitars are made by hand, reportedly by owner Mark Fuqua. Marks guitars are all of a vintage style.
National is best-known for its resonator acoustic guitars. As a matter of fact, they also make some innovative electric guitars. They were founded in 1989 in California.
National String Instrument Corporation
National String Instrument Corporation, popularly known just as “National,” worked from 1927 to 1932 when they merged with Dobro to form the National Dobro Company. They’re best known for their resonator guitars.
Today part of the U.S. Music Corporation, Oscar Schmidt, was initially formed in 1871. As a matter of fact, they still make electric and acoustic guitars, outsourcing production to China.
Ovation is a famous acoustic guitar with rounded backs made from synthetic materials. In addition, they also have some electric guitars in their range.
Luthier Ken Parker started his company in 1993. In addition, the company is known for its solid-body electric guitars, especially the Fly model.
Peavey is best known for its guitar amplifiers. However, they also make electric guitars, basses, and even acoustic guitars.
Penco was a brand that worked under Hoshino Gakki, owners of Ibanez. Working in the 1970s, in addition, they had Fender and Gibson copies and original designs.
Pensa Custom Guitars
Rudy Pensa began making guitars in 1982. The small company still makes custom-order electric guitars.
Pensa-Suhr was a collaboration between John Suhr and Rudy Pensa. In addition, they are known for some of their guitars made for Mark Knopfler.
Bruce Petros founded Petros in 1972. He made high-quality handcrafted acoustic guitars and ukuleles, which still exist today.
Paul Reed Smith founded his work in the 1980s. In addition, the company’s electric guitars are a combination of Fender and Gibson traits and are one of the biggest on the market today.
In short, RainSong is a high-quality acoustic guitar brand. In addition, In addition, they’re known for their carbon body instruments.
Founded in 1882 by José Ramírez I and Manuel Ramírez, the company is still active and is making classical guitars.
Recording King was initially a house brand of Montgomery Ward in the 1930s. It was revived in 2006, and they still make vintage-style acoustic, resonator, and lap-steel electric guitars.
Reverend was established in 1997 by Joe Naylor. The company makes vintage-inspired electric and bass guitars.
Formed in 1931, Rickenbacker became popular in the 1950s and the 1960s. As a matter of fact, they’re one of the most influential electric guitar brands and are still very active.
Robin Guitars was founded in the 1980s as an importer of Japanese brands. They also made their guitars where the Ranger is a popular model. The brand was stopped in 2010.
Ruokangas was started in 1995, and they’re still active. In addition, they make electric guitars and bases using old-school building methods.
Samick originally started in the 1960s. In addition, the company now operates as an affordable overseas instrument brand, making acoustic guitars and other instruments.
Roger Sadowsky started the company in 1979. As a matter of fact, they still exist as a New York-based high-quality custom guitar shop.
SAGA is a brand of affordable instruments, including acoustic guitars. It’s originally an American brand but is now manufactured in China.
Starting in the 1970s in California, Santa Cruz is still operating as a high-end hand-made acoustic guitar brand.
David Schecter started his company in 1976. Their popularity grew from the 2000s and onwards. In addition, they now make electric guitars and basses of all price categories.
Seagull is a Canadian brand of acoustic guitars and a subsidiary of Godin. In addition, they’re known for mid-to high-priced instruments, all made in Canada.
In 1967, Shergold was owned by U.K. company Barnes & Mullins Ltd. As a matter of fact, they’re known for mid-to high-priced electric guitars.
Sigma makes mid-to high-priced acoustic inspired by traditional Martin body shapes. As a matter of fact, Martin owned them from 1970 to 2007 and now operates independently.
Silvertone started in the 1910s under Sears operating until the 1970s. Furthermore, in 2001, Korean Samick Music acquired the brand, and they now make vintage-inspired instruments.
In short, Spector is a high-end custom bass brand. Furthermore, they also manufacture regular custom-order electric guitars.
Squier was initially a string manufacturing company founded in 1980. Furthermore, Fender was reacquired in 1965 and began making cheaper Fender alternatives using the Squire name in the 1980s. As a matter of fact, they’re one of the biggest affordable guitar brands on the market.
Active since 1995, Belgian company Stagg is a sub-brand of E.D.M. Music. Furthermore, they manufacture all sorts of instruments in China, including electric and acoustic guitars.
Steinberger is known for its “headless” electric guitar and bass designs, as well as minimalistic bodies. In addition, Ned Steinberger founded the company in 1979.
Stella was initially a string-instrument brand of Oscar Schmidt. Chicago’s Harmony bought the brand in 1939, and they made guitars until 1975. Some models are highly valued among collectors.
Sterling by Music Man
Serling Ball, son of Ernie Ball, started the company’s sub-brand, Sterling. In addition, they are import budget-friendly versions of Music Man guitars.
John Suhr began making electric guitars in the 1980s before teaming up with Rudy Pensa for Pensa-Suhr. In 1997, he started his custom shop, and the brand still operates today. They are known for making high-end custom-order electric guitars.
Suzuki Music Corporation began in 1953. They make various instruments today. In addition, they also produced guitars for a while.
Initially starting in 1991 as part of Young Chang America, Fender acquired Tacoma in 2004. They made acoustic and classical guitars. As a matter of fact, the brand went defunct in 2008.
Tagima is a Brazilian guitar brand founded in the 1980s. In 1996, it was acquired by Marutec. In addition, they manufacture cheaper electric and acoustic guitars and basses.
Takamine is one of the biggest acoustic guitar brands in the world. The Japanese company started working in 1959. They make high-end instruments for the most part.
Formed in 1989 in London, UK, Tanglewood is a brand that outsources production to China. They have a decent range of products, including acoustic and electric guitars of all price levels.
Taylor, founded in 1974, is one of the most famous acoustic guitar brands globally. In addition, they have their primary production of high-end guitars in California and more affordable alternatives made in Mexico.
A Japanese company, Teisco, was acquired by Kawai in the 1940s. In addition, they made affordable electric guitars. As a matter of fact, the production stopped in 1969.
Idaho’s Chesbro Music Company started the Teton brand in 2010. They have affordable guitars made in China and distributed in the U.S. and Canada.
Michael Tobias started his electric guitar and electric bass brand in 1977. They were known for neck-through designs. In addition, Gibson acquired the brand, and the last models were made in 2003. Gibson now uses the brand name for Epiphone Tobias basses.
Tokai was founded in Japan in 1947. They began making guitars in the 1960s. In addition, they were known for Gibson and Fender copies. As a matter of fact, the brand still exists, and they also have some original designs.
Tom Anderson is a high-end US-based custom guitar brand. As a matter of fact, they focus solely on electric guitars.
Traben is a bass guitar brand from Florida. In addition, it seems that the brand is no longer active.
Travis Bean made high-end custom electric guitars starting in the 1970s. He closed the company in 1979, making around 3600 guitars. Collectors value them highly.
Trembita is a Ukrainian string instrument brand founded in 1948. In addition, they also made guitars but now focus on traditional folk instruments.
TYM is an Australian brand founded in 1997. As a matter of fact, the company still operates but only for individual orders.
Univox was a guitar and effects brand founded in 1960. Matsumoku is a Japanese guitar manufacturer. Korg acquired the name in the 1980s, but nothing under the Univox name has been made since then.
Valco was founded in the 1930s. They made guitars and other gear for other brands. Actually, they merged with Kay in the late 1960s but soon went out of business.
The Valley Arts brand was founded in 1975. Korean company Samick acquired them in the 1990s. In addition, a few years later, Gibson bought the brand. Valley Arts are no longer active. However, collectors value their instruments.
Vester was initially part of Samuel Music Company, with guitars manufactured in Korea. In fact, it was later acquired by Midco but abandoned after legal battles with Fender over their logo use.
French luthier Patrice Vigier began making guitars under the Vigier brand in 1980. Some guitars had carbon fiber necks. In addition, the company still exists, making custom-order high-end electric guitars.
Vox is best-known as an amp and effects brand. In addition, they also manufactured and still manufacture electric guitars.
Walden, formed in 1996, is an acoustic guitar brand that also makes nylon-string classical guitars. In fact, they outsource production to China.
Warwick is a famous bass guitar brand from Germany. In addition, some of their affordable models are made in Korea.
Chicago-based Washburn was founded in 1883 to manufacture string instruments. In the 1970s, they also started producing electric guitars. In addition, they’re currently one of the largest brands on the market.
Westfield was a Scottish brand that sold replicas of Gibsons and Fenders in 1989. They closed in 2013.
Westone originally started in Germany. It was later owned by Matsumoku and St. Louis Music with guitars made in Japan and Korea. In addition, these were affordable entry-level instruments.
Yamaha was founded in 1887 and made musical instruments and other products. In addition, they manufacture electric and acoustic guitars. In fact, cheaper models are made in China, while high-end guitars are made in Japan.
Yairi made acoustic and nylon-string classical guitars in the 1960s and the 1970s.
Tony Zemaitis founded Zemaitis Guitars in the 1950s. In fact, his electric guitars in the 1970s had metal shields on the top and other unique design traits. In fact, the brand still exists, and these high-end guitars are made in Japan.
Founded by Joe Zon, the company started working in 1981. In addition, they currently focus on high-end custom-made electric bass guitars.
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