When you want a portable acoustic guitar that delivers beautiful sounds and consistent tones, Taylor has a couple of options for you to consider.
The Taylor Big Baby guitar is an excellent option for anyone who wants the classic strumming experience. It’s relatively affordable, offers a compact shape, and delivers the traditional look and feel of this instrument.
With the Taylor GS mini acoustic guitar, you receive a scaled-down version that offers more portability while giving musicians something closer to a dreadnought shape to play.
By reviewing the different features and specifications of these two fantastic guitars, it’s much easier to determine where you stand in the Taylor Big Baby vs. Taylor GS mini acoustic debate.
Taylor Big Baby vs. Taylor GS Mini Acoustic Guitars
Taylor’s Big Baby acoustic guitar produces a dynamic note and tone range that accommodates numerous playing styles. It delivers more volume and a louder bottom end than the Taylor GS mini acoustic. The GS Mini sports a full voice, rich sounds, and a lengthy sustain that stays crisp, clear, and bright.
Even though the Taylor GS mini acoustic guitar is on the smaller size for adult instruments, the design does nothing to detract from what it achieves.
It’s as responsive to the musician as any of the larger models produced by the guitar maker.
The GS Mini might be small, but you will be quite surprised by what this little instrument can achieve.
It’s the perfect solution for children, first-time guitarists, or anyone wanting to add something to their collection.
You’ll notice a broader range with the Taylor Big Baby guitar since the extra frets provide more scales and options to play.
The volume benefits are also worth considering, especially if you want to play with natural sounds to a large audience.
If you prefer sending your guitar’s output through a sound system, the GS Mini is a better choice with its pickups.
You’d need to mic the Big Baby to achieve the same result. That fact negates the price difference between the two instruments.
Comparison of the Taylor Big Baby vs. Taylor GS Mini Acoustic Guitars
When looking at the Taylor Big Baby guitar vs. the GS Mini Acoustic Guitar, there are a few differences beyond the size to consider.
Here are the ways these two instruments are comparable, along with the unique points that make each guitar its own.
|Taylor Big Baby Acoustic Guitar||Taylor GS Mini Acoustic Guitar|
|Google Reviews:||4.8 Stars with 40+ reviews||4.8 Stars with 900+ reviews|
|My Rating:||4.7 out of 5 stars||4.7 out of 5 stars|
|Price:||$500 or more||$550 or more|
|Color and Tone:||Natural tones with a light finish using Sitka Spruce||Mahogany with a natural finish, Rosewood, and an additional Spruce option|
|Guitar Type:||Acoustic Only||Acoustic and Electric|
|Unique Feature:||Left-handed option available||Miniature size suitable for all students|
|String Number:||This guitar uses six strings||This mini guitar uses six strings|
It is not the same as the Taylor Swift Signature Baby Taylor Acoustic-Electric guitar.
With the Taylor GS Mini acoustic guitar, you’ll receive a 23.5-inch scale length instrument that delivers 20 frets.
It uses an ebony bridge and chrome tuners to create an attractive appearance while offering a beautiful tone and sustain.
The Sapele laminate back and sides are cost-savings measures, but they don’t take away from the note quality the instrument produces.
If anything, you’ll get more crispness and attack for fingerpicking or hand strumming.
Those elements are reinforced by the Sapele neck and the Sitka spruce top. It also has a Lexan headstock overlay incorporated with the design.
The nut width on the Taylor GS Mini acoustic guitar is 1-11/16 inches.
When picking up the Taylor Big Baby acoustic guitar, you’re getting an instrument made with a Sitka spruce top, along with Sapele back and sides. It has a maple neck and the traditional ebony fretboard.
The scale length on the Big Baby is 25.5 inches, giving it a 15/16 size compared to the traditional dreadnought.
It uses X-style bracing in the body with a Tusq nut and saddle. Taylor incorporates die-cast chrome tuners with the design to provide a beautiful final touch to the instrument’s aesthetics.
How Do the Guitars Feel When Playing?
The Taylor Big Baby acoustic guitar feels like a regular dreadnought when playing. Although the shape is a little thinner, the scale length is right. That makes your chord-based playing feel more familiar.
Anyone who has ever picked up a standard acoustic guitar in the past will be pleased with the overall design of the Big Baby.
It feels like any other, although the quality is certainly a bit higher than what you’ll find in starter or entry-level instruments.
It’s a suitable choice for anyone ready to upgrade from their first instrument without wanting to pay $1,000 or more for something in the mid-range.
With the Taylor GS Mini acoustic guitar, you’re getting an ultra-portable instrument. It’s comfortable to strap around the neck to play or use while sitting in the more classical style.
The smaller scale length takes a bit of an adjustment, but the patented neck still feels natural in the hand when playing.
I’ve always found the GS Mini to be useful for those times when I need to play single-note lines.
Your fingers fly over the strings, producing a beautiful melody or accompaniment that fills the room with sound, whether you’re using the electronics or the instrument’s natural sound.
When playing chords, especially as singing accompaniment, I’ve found the Taylor Big Baby to be the better choice.
Although the GS Mini is more portable for campfire gatherings, church events, or social singalongs, the tone isn’t as well-rounded.
I’ve also had more luck keeping the Big Baby in tune while traveling or while dealing with humid environments.
Taylor Acoustic Guitar Alternatives Priced Under $500
If you’re still on the fence about how much you love playing the acoustic guitar, it doesn’t make sense to spend thousands of dollars on a top-tier instrument.
It also doesn’t make much sense to continue playing on a starter instrument if you’ve developed a year’s worth of skills on the guitar.
If the Taylor Big Baby or GS Mini acoustic guitars don’t seem right to meet your needs, these alternatives under $500 are worth reviewing. Each has some strengths as an instrument worth considering for musicians who are ready to step up to the next level.
|Alternative Acoustic Guitar||Strengths to Consider||Disadvantages to Review|
|Fender Malibu Player Acoustic Guitar||This guitar combines a traditional acoustic shape with Fender’s unique take on tuning support. |
It uses painted mahogany and spruce to create a time-honored tone.
|It uses a Fishman pickup and preamp system that sends more feedback than expected. |
The C-shaped profile might not be comfortable for some guitarists to use.
|Yamaha CGX102 Classical Acoustic-Electric Guitar||The combination of the nylon strings with the 68N pickup system creates a remarkably superior tone. |
Its Nato back and sides contribute more warmth and sustain to enjoy.
|This guitar struggles to stay in tune, especially if you live in an environment with constant humidity. |
Since it’s a classical design, you’ll need to install the strap points if they’re wanted.
|Antonio Giuliani Acoustic Guitar Bundle||If you’re starting a journey that involves playing the guitar, this starter set is worth considering. |
It delivers everything you need to get started, including strings, picks, and a gig bag, while providing a beautiful sound.
|Although the instrument offers a lifetime warranty, there’s only a 45-day money-back guarantee. |
With only 20 frets, it plays closer to the GS Mini, but it has the X-bracing like the Taylor Big Baby.
|Yamaha Storia I Acoustic Guitar||This instrument delivers rich tones with impressive clarity. |
It provides the visual elements of a classical guitar while providing strap points for a more traditional acoustic approach.
|The visual aesthetics of this guitar won’t appeal to everyone. |
Its top is close to gray, which doesn’t create the same contrast with the walnut neck as expected.
|Ibanez AEG50 Acoustic-Electric Guitar||With this acoustic guitar, you’re getting a similar material setup to the Taylor instruments. |
It uses a Nyatoh neck that plays fast and powerfully, while the stunning indigo blue sunburst-style top catches the eye immediately.
|You won’t get as much sustain with this instrument, even when using the electronics package that comes with it. |
Think of this guitar as more of a practice instrument than something for your gigs or sets.
|Little Martin LXK2 Acoustic Guitar||The beautiful Koa finish is similar to one of the GS Mini configurations. |
It even plays in a similar fashion, despite coming in about $200 less, creating the quality and tone musicians want without compromise.
|This design only comes with 14 frets, so it won’t provide the same range as some of the other miniature guitars available today. |
The size is closer to something a young student might train on with their first lessons.
If I had to choose from one of these alternatives to play other than the Taylor Big Baby or Taylor GS Mini, it would be the Little Martin LXK2 acoustic guitar.
Out of all the instruments, that one is guaranteed to be a handmade product. You can tell the wood quality is excellent by how the guitar shapes each note and chord.
It might be a little smaller than what I want, but it’s still a go-to piece for folk, bluegrass, or country music.
The standout feature for the Little Martin LXK2 acoustic guitar is the mortise and tenon neck joint. That extra attention to detail gives the instrument superior strength, making it a joy to use when traveling.
Taylor Big Baby vs. Taylor GS Mini Acoustic: Which Is Better?
Anyone wanting an ultra-portable guitar will appreciate Taylor’s GS Mini acoustic-electric guitar. The size is perfect for traveling, strumming, and fingerpicking. For those who want something closer to the classical experience, the Taylor Big Baby is the better choice for playing or composing.
I appreciate the Taylor Big Baby because it creates a balanced sound anywhere it is played. The fret spacing is suitable for my fingers, and the lower string height is something I appreciate.
When I first learned how to play the acoustic guitar, my folks gave me a Yamaha starter guitar as a gift. Although I loved that thing, the neck on it was so large that I had to strain my fingers to reach the right placements in my teens.
With the Taylor Big Baby’s design, the neck is considerably thinner. That makes it one of the most comfortable acoustic guitars I’ve ever had the privilege to play.
Although fingerpicking isn’t my first choice when playing the guitar, I’ve found the Taylor GS Mini acoustic-electric to be fun to use.
It has an accurate electronics package that keeps the notes sounding natural while playing across a PA system.
It’s my go-to instrument when I’m playing with the guys for a jam session or doing an unplugged set.
Both instruments meet generalized needs successfully. By looking at where these guitars are different, you’ll find the right one to meet your needs today.