7 Best Guitars For ’80s Hair Metal (CHEAP!)

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Best Guitars For '80s Hair Metal

In today’s article we’re going to highlight some of the best guitars for 80s hair metal! In fact, we’re going to have a deeper look at five really cool guitars. There will be a a few sound samples too. If you’re into this genre, you know that it’s wild. The fashion, the sound, the hair – it’s awesome. That’s why if you want to pick the best guitar for 80s hair metal, you need to find something really unique. And I know that it can be challenging, especially in that niche.

Let’s have a look at five awesome guitars that will sound great in 80s hair metal songs. Here’s five affordable models available online. You can check the detailed descriptions if you click the link on the right. In the second part, I included short reviews, some of my thoughts and sound samples of each of these guitars. Ready? Let’s go!

Best Guitar For 80s Hair Metal – List

Jackson JS32Q DinkySee On AmazonSee on Thomann
Schecter C-6See On AmazonSee on Thomann
Ibanez Jem JRSee On Amazon
Jackson JS32TSee On AmazonSee on Thomann
Dean RZR DBKSee On Amazon
ESP LTD EC-256FMSee On AmazonSee on Thomann
Jackson SL2QSee On AmazonSee on Thomann

1. Jackson JS32Q Dinky

Jackson JS Dinky

Classic choice for 80s rock, not necessarily for 80s hair metal. Jackson is definitely one of the leaders in the music industry. In fact, we will cover a few more of their models in today’s article! The Dinky offers great value, classic tone and pretty affordable pricing. What’s more, the guitar has a poplar dinky body with quilt maple arch top.

On top of that, it has 24 jumbo frets made specifically for shredding. Feel free to check out the review below and see how it sounds. Amazing tone, right? The model in the video has a different color, but it’s still the same guitar.

Jackson Dinky JS32-Q Review

Schecter C-6 Plus

schecter c-6 plus - best guitar for 80s hair metal

Another great and affordable option. Moreover, the appearance of this axe is absolutely killer. If you’re a fan of 80s hair metal, you know that the most famous bands used some really weird-looking guitars back then. This color follows the tradition really well and it will make a great first impression on stage during live gigs. The C-6 model features a maple neck and basswood body.

On top of that, it has the Schecter Diamond Pickup Set which is great for metal riffs and shredding. Also, the Tune-O-Matic bridge will definitely be useful within that genre. Sounds really good, looks awesome and it doesn’t cost a fortune – what else do you need? Here’s the sound sample below. Great option!

Schecter C-6 Plus

Ibanez Jem JR

ibanez jem jr

This guitar is REALLY versatile. The fact that this is Steve Vai’s signature guitar makes it an absolutely go-to-choice for any lover of rock and metal music. Again, the unique appearance of this guitar will be really good for 80s hair metal. Is it too pink for a guy? Please. There are no limits in 80s hair metal and this guitar is definitely one of the best on the market right now!

Steve joined forces with Ibanez in 1987 and since then, this model became absolutely iconic. In addition, the HSH pickup setting really allows you to experiment with sounds. That’s why it will be perfect for 80s hair metal! Here’s a short sound sample. What do you think? Let me know in the comments below if you’d play that pink guitar!

Ibanez Jem JR Sound Sample

Jackson JS 32T

Jackson JS32T guitar

Another Jackson on my list and another really unusual looking guitar. In fact, most of 80s hair metal guitarists used guitars of various shapes. This shape is a great example of that! Who needs a regular Stratocaster when you can have this beautiful thing? Undoubtedly, the JS 32T makes a really stunning first impression. The guitar features a poplar body, maple neck and amaranth fingerboard.

What’s more, it has a different bridge than the previous model presented in the article. This one has a TOM-style through-body bridge. Certainly, this model will be ideal for some fat 80s hair metal riffs and fast melodic solos. Check out the sound sample below. Sounds pretty good, right?

Jackson JS 32T Sound Sample


dean rzr bk - best guitar for 80s hair metal

Another really cool looking and pretty affordable guitar. Of course, this guitar is often recommended for death metal and black metal guitarists. It looks a little bit demonic, right? Nevertheless, it will still be a perfect choice for 80s hair metal too. Fast neck, top quality materials and decent pricing are major advantages of that guitar.

On the other hand, because of the shape, it may be difficult to find the perfect gig bag for it. But.. who cares about the gig bags? It’s 80s hair metal. It’s all about the metal! This Dean model features a mahogany top, maple neck and rosewood fingerboard. Undoubtedly, you will be able to play some sick riffs on that guitar. Check out the sound sample of that satanic axe below!

Dean RZR DB CBK Sound Sample


ESP LTD - best guitar for 80s hair metal

Of course, I have to recommend at least one Les Paul guitar in my article. These guitars were the foundation of 80s rock and metal music. In my opinion, this ESP will be ideal for 80s hair metal. It has everything you need: mahogany body and neck, a flamed maple top, passive pickups and 22 Extra Jumbo frets. This guitar is absolutely spectacular.

I had the pleasure to test it out on my own and trust me – WOW. It’s super comfortable and enjoyable to play. Certainly, you will be able to shred some stunning solos on that thing. The major disadvantage is the price – it’s a little bit more expensive than previous guitars on my list. Nevertheless, if you have the budget for it, I highly recommend it! Check out the sound sample below.

ESP LTD EC-256FM Review

Jackson SL2Q

Jackson SL2Q - Best guitar for 80s hair metal

Absolutely stunning guitar. Out of three Jackson guitars on my list, this one is the most expensive. In fact, it’s two or three more times expensive that some guitars on my list. But oh, boy. What a guitar. The appearance, the sound, the attention to detail… just wow. Absolutely remarkable. I don’t think that my words can actually describe how good that guitar is. Check it out on your own and see it for yourself. Sounds sick, right? It’s also available in a few really cool colors.


As you can see, there are a lot of great and really affordable guitars out there. Which one would I call as ‘The Best Guitar For 80s Hair Metal’? Well, this is tricky. If you have the budget for it, I’d go for the last one. It’s definitely really sick. On the other hand, all other guitars also offer really good quality and sound that will be perfect for 80s hair metal. Whether you choose Jackson, Ibanez or Dean, I guarantee that you’ll be satisfied.

Thanks for checking out Best Guitars Now. I hope that my article helped you with making the right choice! If you think that I should add another model to my list, let me know in the comment section below. Peace!

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