What are the "safest" guitar styles?
There are 3 specific guitars that always work when playing it safe.
What is "safe"?
Certain styles, as in looks, are guaranteed safe. For some buyers, this is important because they want to purchase a guitar that they know is considered "good" but will also hold decent resale value in the future.
Note that I'm talking about style here. Not sound. Not reliability. Style. Just style, and only style.
The three safest brands are Fender, Gibson and Martin. Fender and Gibson cover the electrics, and Martin covers the acoustics.
On electrics, only one color matters. Sunburst.
On acoustics, only one color matters. Natural.
The only model that matters from Fender is the American Standard Stratocaster.
The only model that matters from Gibson is the USA Les Paul Standard.
The only model that matters from Martin is the D-45.
Specific classics that always work
- Fender American Standard Stratocaster, 3-Tone Sunburst, maple neck/fretboard
- Gibson USA Les Paul Standard, Heritage Cherry Sunburst
- Martin D-45 (any, as long as it's natural, no sunburst)
Which would I personally buy?
If I actually cared about going with a "safe" guitar, I would get the Strat.
Would I get it because it's the "cheapest" of the lot? No. I'd get it because I know the Strat very well and I could get the most use out of the instrument for what I play.
Should you get one of the above?
If you care about resale value, yes - BUT - and this is a big but - you absolutely CANNOT modify the guitar in any way.
Once the guitar is bought, the only thing you can change on it is the strings and that's it. If you change anything else on the instrument, you lose resale value instantly.
Remember, "safe" guitars are boutique instruments that have to be babied because you bought it for the resale value. Treat your Fender, Gibson or Martin as you would a Rolex Submariner. You only use it on special occasions, and when you do, you're very careful not to get so much as a scratch anywhere on it.