How Many Frets Does an Acoustic Guitar Have? Choosing The Right

The steel-stringed acoustic guitars which now seem to exist in a huge variety around the world were once just a clever design with an inner structure that could withstand the tension of steel strings. The one who has been thought to be behind this clever design was a German immigrant in the US called Christian Frederick Martin (1796-1876).

How Many Frets Does an Electric Guitar Have?

You could say that he was the one who invented the acoustic guitar because prior to this, the guitars were often made from the intestines of sheep and were call the catgut strings. He was the first to decide using a guitar that used steel strings instead and from there on the legacy began.

Nowadays we have different types of guitars available to us. Both the acoustic and electric types of guitars are used in a wide range. These guitars are structurally unique enough to be able to withstand the tension of the steel strings within then. However, this is not the only thing that makes them a structurally clever design. Another thing that makes a guitar a unique musical instrument rather than a pair of steel wires tied to a wooden body is its frets.

What are Guitar Fretboard?

Frets are basically metal strips that are made of an alloy of nickel and brass. These strips are embedded along the fretboard of a guitar. The fretboard makes up the most of the guitar’s neck. The strings on the fretboard, when pressed down, produce specific notes.

Though the metal strip itself is the fret, however on guitar the location on fretboard below a fret is actually referred to as a fret.

For example, the place between the nuts at bottom of its end which is farthest from guitar body. The frets may be named accordingly as a first fret, second fret, and so on.

Every one fret whilst moving up the guitar body raises the pitch of a note by a half step or semitone. The 12th fret encompasses the note with one full octave which is above the pitch of an open string.

The 12th fret exactly divides the scale length which is the distance between the nut and the bridge into half.

1. Number of Frets

The number of frets on a guitar depends upon the type of the guitar. The number of frets on an electric guitar is around 22 to 24. Acoustic guitars on the other hand generally have 20 frets. While a standard classical guitar has 19 frets.

Some really classical ones from the 1800s used to have 17 to 18 frets. Though depending upon the model and type of guitar, the frets may vary.

The guitars with more variations when it comes to the number of frets are usually steel-stringed acoustic guitars. Many of them even have 20 frets and some even an indentation in their bodies called a “cutaway”. This feature allows easy access to the upper frets.

2. Fret Buzz

Steel stringed guitars often experience wear and tear but so do frets. This is when frets begin to buzz. As the name implies, the fret literally begins making a buzzing sound. This ruins the capability of the instruments for you and is often due to poor manufacturing or the bad setup.

In simple cases, some adjustments to your instruments that fix the frets for you as long as you figure out where the problem is. These same conditions may also occur in electric guitars under budget even though they are more common with the acoustic ones.

While starting your guitar lessons as a beginner, it is important that you at least know about the frets on your guitar. Knowing the frets can be the first step to studying chords. Way before you even begin studying music, you should study the body of your guitar properly. Once you get comfortable and informed about the structure of your instrument, it’s easy to use them.


Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

1. Does the number of frets on a guitar matter?

To put it simply, it’s not a huge factor. There can always be extra frets when it comes to a 24 fret guitar that you might not use. Beginners should be fine with either as they shouldn’t care about the perfect intonations that come with the frets or the pickup positions. Though, it is fine either way. However, a large number of frets mean longer distances between the bridge and the nut. So, the strings would require higher tension to be tuned on the same frequency. Comparatively, less number of frets will make bending the strings easier. So the impact of scale length might affect your play. Otherwise, there won’t be that much difference at least not for beginners.

2. Are 12 fret guitars easier?

A 12 fret guitar’s bridge is further from its sound hole but closer to the lower bout. This allows it to sit on more flexibility and offer more sustenance on smaller bodies. These tend to be warmer and full sounding due to the positioning of the bridge. Players with a compact frame would feel more comfortable to draw the body of a 12 fret guitar closer to them since everything is within reach. Though, a person who needs more space can easily feel cramped over 12 fret guitars. They are only easier depending upon the player’s rate of comfort with them. It’s all about personal preference.

3. What guitars have 24 frets?

Many guitars have 24 frets depending upon the brand and the manufacturer. The most well-known brands that manufacture 24 fret guitars in their varieties are Ibanez, PRS, Ernie Ball music man, Schecter guitars, Vigier Guitars, Strandberg guitars, Epiphone, and so on.

4. How many frets does a dreadnought guitar have?

The dreadnaught guitars which are very famous for their square bouts and wide waist have 14 fret necks. These are quite famous among guitarists for their powerful sounds.

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