Can Acoustic Guitars Be Plugged Into Amps?


You’ve just bought a new acoustic guitar and are itching to start playing it. The question is, can you plug the guitar into an amplifier?

Yes, acoustic guitars can be plugged into amps. Acoustic guitars are often played unplugged, but they can also be plugged into an amp and played through a speaker or headphones.

This is especially useful if you’re playing in a place where there isn’t much room for the sound to travel, and avoid health risks from loud guitar music. It’s also a good way to isolate yourself and focus on the sound of your guitar without having to worry about other people hearing it as well.

Can Acoustic Guitars Be Plugged Into Amps

The main reason why you need to plug an acoustic guitar into an amp is to make the sound louder and more clear.

The main difference between an acoustic guitar and an electric guitar is that the electric guitar has a built-in amplifier. Therefore, when you plug an electric guitar into an amp, it is already amplified and ready to play without needing any further amplification.

However, this is not the case with an acoustic guitar. Since acoustic guitars do not have a built-in amplifier, they need to be plugged into an external device to amplify their sound.

How to Plug and Set up an Acoustic Guitar into an Amp

Acoustic guitars are a great way to get started in the guitar world, but they’re also a lot more complicated than other instruments. If you’re planning on playing an acoustic guitar, chances are good that you’ve already invested in an amplifier or more. But if your amp isn’t compatible with your instrument or plain isn’t loud enough for performing outdoorsy gigs, what do you do?

Step 1: Check If The Amplifier Has A DI Input.

One of the first things you’ll want to do is test the amplifier for maximum efficiency. Look for a jack labeled “Direct Inject,” “Direct,” or “In.” If it doesn’t have any of these labels, then there’s no way you can plug in an acoustic guitar and get sound out of your amp.

If your amp does have one of these jacks and you’re still having trouble getting your acoustic guitar plugged in correctly, make sure that the cable running from the instrument into the jack is long enough (at least two feet). This will prevent issues from accidentally shortening it while trying to secure everything together correctly.

Step 2: Connect the Output Jack of Your Guitar to the DI Input of the Amp.

Before you plug your guitar in, it’s a good idea to ensure the cable is connected correctly. You don’t want to accidentally short out your guitar by connecting the wrong part of the cable!

This is how to connect your output jack to an amp’s DI input:

  • Connect one end of your XLR cable to a space on any bright red output jacks on either side of a loudspeaker cabinet.
  • Connect another end of this same XLR cable as far up toward its right edge as possible without touching anything else along its length or bending it.

Step 3: Play Your Guitar and Make Sure You are getting a Clean Sound

Once you are certain your guitar sounds good, play some basic chords. You can also try playing scales and songs to make sure they sound clean too.

If there are any issues with signal flow or distortion, take note of them so that you can fix them before continuing with this process if possible.

Step 4: You Can Use External Preamp Pedal to Improve Sound Quality

An external preamp pedal is the best way to improve the sound quality of your acoustic guitar. This device will boost the signal before it becomes an amplifier, allowing you to adjust its volume and tone settings.

You can use an external preamp with any electric guitar or bass that has an output jack on its end. It’s handy for connecting your acoustic guitar directly to a mixing board but also works well with amplifiers with their direct inputs or outputs.

Here are some or all parts you will explore when plugging your guitar into amps:

PowerTurn amp on or off
VolumeControl output sound
GainControl input sound
EQLow, mid, high sound frequencies
ReverbIncrease sound ambiance
InputsFor amp and guitar plugins
Speaker outConnect to external speakers
HeadphoneFor silent practice

Why You Should Plug an Acoustic Guitar into an Amp

There are many reasons to plug an acoustic guitar into an amp, but the most popular reason is to sound like an electric guitar. By plugging your acoustic into an amp, you can get a cleaner, more powerful sound than what comes out of your speakers. Playing electric instruments can also achieve the same distorted sounds and other effects.

 I. For Loudness

Plugging your acoustic guitar into an amp will help if you’re looking for a louder sound. The reason is that most acoustic guitars are not built with enough volume to be played at high volumes without sounding tinny and thin.

However, if your acoustic guitar has been through some repairs or upgrades and now has thicker strings, it can be plugged into an amp to get more power out of it.

II. Get Access to All Amp Effects

You can use amp effects to create a wide range of sounds. It’s like having an arsenal of instruments at your disposal, but they’re all built into one device. You can play them all together or use them separately as well.

Acoustic guitars plugged into amps can be used for many different things:

  • Creating different genres
  • Playing different songs depending on what type of music you want to play
  • Getting more tones out of your acoustic guitar

III. To Get More Creative

If you’re getting started, you can plug your acoustic into an amp and play with some effects and amps. But if that sounds like too much work, there are other ways to get creative with your sound without having to take out a loan or sign up for lessons!

You can use different guitars and amps and different people who play music. The possibilities are endless! It doesn’t matter where or when, but stepping onto the stage and performing whatever song comes into mind.

IV. To Get a Variety of Acoustic Pickups

Guitarists can use a variety of acoustic pickups, which allow them to plug their guitars into amps. There are many different types of acoustic pickups, including piezo pickups and magnetic pickups.

The type of pickup you use will determine what kind of amp you can plug your guitar into:

  • Piezo Pickups: These are found in acoustic guitars that have piezoelectric transducers. They’re small devices that convert vibrations from the instrument into electrical signals that can be amplified by an amplifier’s speaker cabinet or by headphones.
  •  Magnetic Pickups: They’re small magnets surrounding a piece of metal wire wrapped around another thin piece of metal wire which forms part of an electric circuit. When played, they produce vibrations that cause current flows through wires connected at each end, thus amplifying sounds.


Ultimately, acoustic guitars can be plugged into an amp. There may not be any need to do so, especially if you intend to play the acoustic loud enough to fill a room with sound, but it’s an option for you as a musician. However, experimentation with your gear helps you develop your skills as a player. So go ahead, get out there and plug in that acoustic!

Sourav Biswas

Music is my life and I love to play guitar so much. It's been a part of me for as long as I can remember. I grew up in a musical family, and my parents were always supportive of my passion for music. I am also a freelance writer who has been writing for over 10 years. I have written for both online and offline publications, including Amazon and Medium.

Recent Posts