It’s a debate as old as the brands themselves- is Fender or Gibson better? Both legendary guitar brands offer different things, so it’s important to figure out which is best for you. Both brands have fans and naysayers. Choosing between the two is a matter of comfort, style, and, of course, sound. Design elements such as the body shape, scale length, neck, and headstock make each brand easy to identify.
Gibsons and Fenders have some distinct characteristics and benefits. But they also have some similarities. Both Gibson and Fender Guitars are iconic brands that have been in business for decades. Backwoods Guitar is here to give you a breakdown of both today and help you determine which one might be the best fit for you!
Benefits of Fender Guitars
Fender guitars were introduced in the 1940s, using the highest quality alder and ash for bodies. These tonal woods make the Fender lightweight and easy to handle. Many guitarists choose fenders because of these design elements and report that the Fender guitars seem to conform comfortably to their bodies.
Fender electrics use single-coil pickups, which offer brighter, thinner sounds that are popular in country, pop, and blues genres. Typically, you will find a short scale length on Fenders that provides a bell-like rich tone.
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In addition to having lightweight bodies, Fenders are designed with a thinner, curved neck, making them the perfect choice for people with small hands or beginner guitarists.
Fenders are generally less expensive than Gibsons and are easily customizable when needed.
Benefits of Gibson Guitars
Gibson guitars feature mostly Humbucker-style pickups, giving them a loud, full sound popular with heavy metal, hard rock, and punk musicians. The body is generally made from rosewood, a heavier but more resilient wood. This exotic wood is great for musicians on tour because of its ability to hold up during harsh weather conditions. Some Gibsons use mahogany, which is also denser and heavier than alder or ash but gives it a rich, warm tone.
Gibsons also have short-scale lengths, which give them warm undertones. It has a longer fingerboard and thinner neck, making Gibsons easy to play for most musicians.
Gibson guitars generally are more expensive than Fenders. You may not think that is a benefit, but it also means that they hold their value better, so make a great investment. Vintage models can appreciate their value many times over.
Knowing Whether to Get a Gibson or Fender Guitar
Is Fender better than Gibson? Many heavy metal players opt for a Gibson; meanwhile, lots of country players swear by Fender- but those aren’t strict distinctions. Artists of all genres love both of these brands. But to know the best fit for you, there are a few other factors to consider:
- -Decide how the guitar will be used. Are you gigging five days a week or simply playing at home? -Are you traveling with your guitar? What kind of music is being played, and for what length of time? Gibsons hold up better to different climates, while Fenders are lighter and easier on your back and neck for extended periods of time.
- -What is your level of expertise? Do you play professionally or for fun? Both Gibsons and Fenders offer several models that work for beginner musicians up to the level of pro.
- -What sound do you prefer? The rich, warm tones of the Gibson or the bright bell tones of the Fender?
It all comes down to personal preference. Each player has their own preferences on sound, comfort, and ease. The best way to make the decision is to try out both brands before you buy.
Find the Right Guitar Today!
Regardless of your choice of either a Fender or a Gibson electric guitar, at Backwoods Guitar, we have just what you are looking for. Even if we don't have what you're looking for in stock, ask our team about building a custom guitar to fit your needs! Stop by and check out our vast inventory in our 3000-square-foot showroom in Sedalia, Missouri, or give us a call at 660-851-2233 if you have questions.
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