The Best Hardshell Cases to Protect Your Acoustic Guitar

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You’ve finally invested in the acoustic guitar of your dreams but now you need to protect it while on the go. A hardshell case is the perfect solution for safeguarding your prized instrument from the bumps and bruises of travel. But with so many options out there, how do you know which one is the best fit for you? Fear not, as we have compiled a list of the top hardshell cases for acoustic guitars to help you make the right choice. From durability to portability, we’ve got you covered. So, let’s dive in and discover which cases will give your guitar the protection it deserves.

What to Look for in a Hardshell Case

What To Look For In A Hardshell Case
When it comes to protecting your acoustic guitar, a hardshell case is a crucial investment. Not all hardshell cases are created equal, however. There are several factors to consider when choosing the best one for your needs. Durability, size and fit, and portability are key things to keep in mind. You want to make sure your guitar is not only safe and secure, but also easy to transport. To help you make an informed decision, let’s take a look at these factors in more detail. If you’re interested in more information about acoustic guitar cases in general, check out our guide on how to choose the right guitar case.


One of the most important factors to consider in a hardshell case is durability. A guitar case should be able to withstand harsh weather conditions, accidental bumps, and even abuse during transportation. In order to determine the durability level, different features should be considered, such as thickness, locking mechanism, and overall build quality.

To begin with, the thickness of the case is directly related to its durability. Using a thicker exterior material will provide more protection against external impacts. For example, the SKB Waterproof Case is constructed with a military-grade, ultra-high strength polypropylene copolymer resin molding that ensures supreme overall strength and durability.

Another essential aspect to consider is the locking mechanism of the case. The locks should be sturdy and offer enhanced protection. The Musicians Gear Deluxe Case, for instance, has six reinforced latches that keep the lid securely closed and provide quick access to the guitar.

The build quality of the exterior material also plays a huge role in the case’s durability. Some hardshell cases are made with cheap or thin plastic that might not hold up well. The Martin 640 Dreadnought Case is made of high-quality materials that are both durable and attractive. Its exterior is made from hard plastic and features antique gold-plated hardware.

When looking for a hardshell case for your acoustic guitar, it’s very important to prioritize durability above everything else. A sturdy case will protect your instrument from any potential harm during transportation, guaranteeing that it will stay safe and secure.

Size and Fit

When it comes to hardshell cases for acoustic guitars, size and fit are crucial factors to consider. A case that is too small or too big for your guitar can compromise the safety and security of the instrument.

1. Measure your guitar: Before purchasing a hardshell case, take careful measurements of your guitar. Measure the length, width, and depth of the body as well as the length from the top of the headstock to the bottom of the body. Make sure to include any protrusions like knobs or bridges.

2. Check the case dimensions: When shopping for a hardshell case, check the dimensions and make sure they match the measurements of your guitar. Look for cases that specify the type of guitar they are designed for, such as dreadnought or parlor.

3. Consider extra storage: Depending on how you plan to use the case, you may want to consider extra storage space. Look for cases with compartments for accessories like picks, strings, and tuners.

4. Padding and cushioning: A good hardshell case should have enough padding and cushioning to keep your guitar snug and secure. Look for cases with plush interiors that won’t scratch the finish of your guitar.

5. Weight: While you want a case that fits your guitar snugly, make sure it’s not too heavy for you to carry. Consider the weight of the case itself, as well as any accessories or gear you plan to carry with it.

By taking the time to ensure the right size and fit for your guitar, you can have peace of mind knowing your instrument will be protected during travel and storage.


When it comes to choosing a hardshell case for your acoustic guitar, portability should also be a key factor to consider. Here are some points to keep in mind:

  • Weight: A hard case that is too heavy can be a burden, especially if you have to carry it around for extended periods. Look for cases that offer sturdy protection without adding too much extra weight.
  • Handles: Check for handles that are designed for comfort and ease of carrying. Some cases have multiple handles, including shoulder straps, which can be especially useful for musicians who transport their guitars frequently.
  • Size: Take note of the case’s dimensions, as larger cases may be difficult to maneuver through tight spaces or to pack in a car or van. If you travel frequently or need to store your case in tight quarters, consider a compact or slimline design.
  • Wheels: If you’re frequently on the go with your guitar and case, consider a case with built-in wheels. Rolling the case can make transportation much easier, especially in airports or other areas with smooth surfaces.

When choosing a hardshell case for your acoustic guitar, you want to balance protection and portability. Look for a well-designed case that offers both strength and mobility, so you can enjoy peace of mind knowing your instrument is secure and easy to carry with you.

Our Top Picks

Our Top Picks
After conducting extensive research and analyzing various options available in the market, we have narrowed down our top picks for hardshell cases for acoustic guitars. These cases provide sturdy protection for your beloved instrument while offering convenience and ease of transport. Each of our selected options offers unique features and benefits that cater to different needs and preferences. So, without further ado, let’s take a closer look at our top choices for the best hardshell cases for acoustic guitars.

SKB Waterproof Case

One of the top picks for a hardshell case for your acoustic guitar is the SKB Waterproof Case. This case is designed to provide ultimate protection and durability for your precious instrument. Here are some key features of the SKB Waterproof Case:

  • Waterproof and Impact Resistant: The SKB Waterproof Case is made of ultra-high-strength polypropylene copolymer resin, which makes it virtually indestructible. It is also waterproof, so you can rest assured that your guitar will stay safe and dry even in the most challenging weather conditions.
  • Customizable Foam Padding: The case comes with customizable foam padding that you can shape to fit your acoustic guitar perfectly. This means that your guitar will not move around inside the case and will remain secure during transportation.
  • Locking Latches: The SKB Waterproof Case features four locking latches that keep the lid securely closed. The latches are also TSA-approved, which means that you can take the case with you on flights without any issues.
  • Comfortable Carrying Handle and Strap: The case has a comfortable carrying handle and a shoulder strap, which makes it easy to carry your acoustic guitar around with you wherever you go.
  • Stylish Design: The SKB Waterproof Case has a sleek and stylish design, which makes it stand out from other hardshell cases on the market. It comes in black, so it will match any outfit or style.

The SKB Waterproof Case is an excellent choice for anyone who wants a hardshell case that provides superior protection and durability. It is not the cheapest option, but it is well worth the price for the peace of mind it provides. Plus, with its customizable foam padding and comfortable carrying options, it is easy to transport and store your acoustic guitar in style.

Musicians Gear Deluxe Case

One of our top picks for hardshell cases for acoustic guitars is the Musicians Gear Deluxe Case. It’s a sturdy and affordable option for those looking to protect their instrument without breaking the bank.

Durability: The Musicians Gear Deluxe Case is made with a 5-ply wood construction, which provides plenty of protection against bumps and scratches. The exterior is covered in a black tolex material that can withstand wear and tear from everyday use.

Size and Fit: This case is designed to fit most standard dreadnought acoustic guitars, but it doesn’t come with extra padding or adjustable foam inserts. That being said, it does come with a spacious accessory compartment where you can store your guitar tuner, extra strings, and other small items.

Portability: The Musicians Gear Deluxe Case is relatively lightweight, which makes it easy to carry around. It has a padded handle on the side and shoulder straps that allow you to carry it like a backpack.

Here is a table summarizing the key features of the Musicians Gear Deluxe Case:

Feature Description
Durability 5-ply wood construction with black tolex exterior
Size and Fit Fits most standard dreadnought acoustic guitars
Portability Lightweight with padded handle and shoulder straps
Price Affordable
Brand Compatibility Designed for musicians on a budget
Exterior Material Black tolex

If you’re looking for a hardshell case that’s easy on your wallet but still provides a decent amount of protection, the Musicians Gear Deluxe Case is an excellent option to consider.

Martin 640 Dreadnought Case

The Martin 640 Dreadnought Case is a high-quality hardshell case designed to protect your acoustic guitar. It is specifically designed to fit Martin Dreadnought guitars and other similar-sized models, making it a popular choice among musicians who own these types of guitars.

This hardshell case is made from durable impact-resistant material, which provides optimal protection from scratches, dents, and other types of damage. The interior of the case is made from plush velvet, which provides a soft and comfortable resting place for your guitar. The strong chrome latches and hinges provide secure closure, ensuring that your guitar will remain safe during transport.

Additionally, this case features a rugged exterior that can withstand harsh weather conditions and accidental bumps. The Martin 640 Dreadnought Case also comes equipped with a storage compartment inside, allowing you to store your accessories such as extra strings, picks, capos, and more.

To further enhance portability, the Martin 640 Dreadnought Case comes with a comfortable carrying handle and a removable shoulder strap, so you can carry your guitar easily and comfortably. Additionally, this case is relatively lightweight, making it easy to travel with.

Here is a brief rundown of the pros and cons of the Martin 640 Dreadnought Case:


  • High-quality durable material that provides optimal protection for your guitar
  • Plush velvet interior that protects the guitar from scratches and dents
  • Storage compartment for accessories
  • Comfortable carrying handle and removable shoulder strap for easy transport


  • Only designed to fit Martin Dreadnought guitars and other similar-sized models
  • Relatively expensive compared to other hardshell cases

All in all, the Martin 640 Dreadnought Case is an excellent option for those who own Martin Dreadnought guitars or other similar-sized models. While it may be more expensive than other hardshell cases on the market, the quality of the case is well worth the extra expense. With its durable material and plush interior, you can be confident that your guitar will remain protected during transport.

Gator Frameworks TSA-Approved Case

The Gator Frameworks TSA-Approved Case is a high-quality hardshell case that provides excellent protection to your acoustic guitar while traveling. Here are the features that make it stand out:

  • Heavy-Duty Build: The Gator Frameworks case is made from rugged materials that can absorb the impact of bumps and knocks during transit. The exterior of the case is covered with tough, road-ready materials that can protect it from scratches and scuffs.
  • TSA-Approved Locks: The Gator Frameworks case comes with TSA-approved locks that ensure your guitar does not get damaged or stolen during air travel. The TSA-approved locks are made with high-quality materials that are difficult to pick, ensuring your guitar’s safety.
  • Plush Interior: The interior of the Gator Frameworks case is lined with a plush, padded material that keeps your guitar snug and secure while in transit. The material used is soft, so it does not cause any scratches or damages to the guitar’s finish, thus protecting it from damage.
  • Comfortable Grip: The Gator Frameworks case has a contoured grip that is comfortable to hold, even for extended periods. The grip allows for easy transportation of the case, and you don’t have to worry about it slipping out of your hands.
  • Trendy Design: The Gator Frameworks case comes in a stylish design that is attractive to look at. The sleek design adds a touch of elegance and sophistication to your traveling style, and the case will surely impress your fellow musicians.

If you are a traveling musician and want a high-quality case that guarantees your guitar’s safety, then the Gator Frameworks TSA-Approved Case is an excellent choice. With its rugged build, TSA-approved locks, comfortable grip, and plush interior, you can rest assured that your guitar will remain protected throughout your travels.

Other Considerations

As you search for the perfect hardshell case for your acoustic guitar, there are a few more factors to consider beyond just durability, size, and portability. Do you have a specific budget in mind? Are you looking for a case that’s compatible with a certain brand of guitar? What about the exterior material? In this section, we’ll dive deeper into these other important considerations to help you make the best decision for you and your guitar.


When it comes to selecting a hardshell case for your acoustic guitar, price is certainly a significant consideration. Here are our recommendations for top quality cases in different price ranges:

Price Range Recommended Cases
Under $100 The Musicians Gear Deluxe Case is an excellent option for those on a budget. It offers adequate protection for your instrument while keeping the price affordable.
$100-$200 The Martin 640 Dreadnought Case is a sturdy option that fits within this price range. It’s been designed to fit Martin guitars specifically and offers great protection at a reasonable price point.
$200-$300 The Gator Frameworks TSA-Approved Case is a great option for traveling musicians. It offers maximum protection and durability, and its TSA approval makes it easy to get through airport security without any hassle.
Above $300 The SKB Waterproof Case is a top-of-the-line option when it comes to hardshell cases. Its waterproof design, coupled with its durability, ensures that your guitar will remain protected in even the harshest environments.

Remember, a high-quality hardshell case is an investment in protecting your acoustic guitar, and it’s essential to choose a case that fits your budget while still providing the necessary protection.

Brand Compatibility

When you’re looking for a hardshell case for your acoustic guitar, brand compatibility is an important consideration. Not all guitar brands have the same dimensions, so it’s important to make sure the case you choose is the right fit for your specific guitar. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

Know Your Guitar’s Brand and Model: Before you even start shopping for a hardshell case, it’s important to know the brand and model of your guitar. This will allow you to narrow down your search to cases that are specifically designed for your guitar’s dimensions.

Research Your Brand’s Recommended Cases: Many guitar brands offer their own hardshell cases that are designed to fit their guitars perfectly. If you’re not sure which case to choose, start by checking out the recommended cases from your guitar’s manufacturer.

Consider Universal Cases: If you have a particularly unique or rare guitar model, it may be difficult to find a case that is specifically designed for it. In these cases, a universal hardshell case may be the best option. These cases can accommodate a wide variety of guitar shapes and sizes, so they may be a good choice if you have multiple guitars or if you’re a gigging musician.

Check the Dimensions: No matter which type of hardshell case you choose, it’s important to check the dimensions of the case to make sure it will provide a snug and secure fit for your guitar. Look for cases that provide padding and support to keep your guitar from shifting or sliding around inside the case.

Consider Custom Cases: For those who want the ultimate protection for their guitar, custom hardshell cases may be the way to go. These cases are designed specifically for your guitar’s dimensions and features, and they provide the most secure fit and protection. However, custom cases can be quite expensive and may require a longer lead time for production.

Be sure to do your research and choose a hardshell case that is compatible with your guitar’s brand and model. Whether you choose a brand-specific case or a universal design, make sure the dimensions are a good fit and that the case provides adequate support and protection for your valuable instrument.

Exterior Material

When it comes to the exterior material of a hardshell guitar case, there are several options available on the market. The choice depends on your preference and budget. Let’s take a closer look at the most commonly used materials and their advantages and disadvantages:

Advantages Disadvantages
Wood – Attractive and traditional look
– Good durability
– Provides good moisture control
– Provides good insulation from temperature changes
– Heavier than other materials
– More expensive than other materials
– May still require padding for shock resistance
ABS Plastic – Lightweight
– Offers high-impact resistance
– Inexpensive
– Available in various colors and designs
– Easy to clean
– May not provide adequate protection against extreme temperatures
– May have a stiffer feel than other materials
Fiberglass – Durable and strong
– Can withstand extreme temperature changes
– Provides good insulation
– Heavier than some other options
– More expensive than ABS Plastic
– May not be available in various colors and designs
Hybrid Materials – Combines the strength and rigidity of one material with the lightweight and weather resistance of another material
– Can be customized to provide the best combination of features
– More expensive than other options
– May not be as widely available

Regardless of the exterior material, it’s important to note that no hardshell case provides complete protection against all types of damage. That being said, choosing a high-quality exterior material can significantly improve the protection of your acoustic guitar, especially during transportation. Don’t forget to prioritize the durability and quality of the exterior material when selecting a hardshell case that meets your needs.


In conclusion, finding the right hardshell case for your acoustic guitar is crucial to protecting your investment and ensuring its longevity. A durable case with a snug fit will help prevent any damage from impacts, and portability is also an important factor to consider if you plan on travelling with your instrument.

After careful research and consideration, our top picks for the best hardshell cases for acoustic guitars are the SKB Waterproof Case, Musicians Gear Deluxe Case, Martin 640 Dreadnought Case, and Gator Frameworks TSA-Approved Case. Each of these cases offers excellent protection and durability for your guitar, as well as features that make them convenient and easy to transport.

Of course, there are other factors to consider when choosing a hardshell case, such as price, brand compatibility, and exterior material. While our focus has been on the top picks, we encourage you to explore your options and find the case that best fits your needs and budget.

At the end of the day, investing in a high-quality hardshell case is a wise choice for any acoustic guitar player. It provides peace of mind knowing your instrument is safe and secure, and it also helps maintain its value over time. We hope this guide has been helpful in your quest for the best hardshell case for your acoustic guitar.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a hardshell case?

A hardshell case is a protective case designed to hold and transport acoustic guitars safely. It is made of sturdy materials like wood, ABS plastic, or fiberglass, and provides extra cushioning and support for the instrument.

Why do I need a hardshell case for my acoustic guitar?

A hardshell case protects your acoustic guitar from damage when you’re on the go. It prevents scratches, dings, and other potential hazards from damaging your instrument.

What should I look for when choosing a hardshell case?

You should consider factors such as durability, size and fit, and portability. Additionally, you should look at other considerations like price, brand compatibility, and exterior material.

Are all hardshell cases waterproof?

No, not all hardshell cases are waterproof. While some hardshell cases are designed to be waterproof, others may be water-resistant or only offer minimal protection from water.

Can I travel with my acoustic guitar in a hardshell case?

Yes, you can travel with your acoustic guitar in a hardshell case. However, if you plan to fly with your guitar, you may want to choose a TSA-approved case that meets airline regulations.

Do hardshell cases come with locks?

Many hardshell cases come with key locks or combination locks to keep your guitar secure. However, not all cases provide this feature, so it’s important to check before making your purchase.

Can I customize my hardshell case?

Some hardshell cases allow for customization, such as adding foam inserts or additional compartments. However, others are designed to be used as-is with no modifications.

What is the weight of a typical hardshell case?

The weight of a hardshell case can vary depending on the materials used and the level of protection it provides. However, most hardshell cases for acoustic guitars weigh between 7-12 pounds.

How do I clean my hardshell case?

You can clean your hardshell case with a soft cloth and mild soap and water. Be sure to avoid harsh chemicals, as they can damage the material of the case.

Do all hardshell cases fit all acoustic guitar sizes?

No, not all hardshell cases fit all acoustic guitar sizes. It’s important to choose a case that is specifically designed for your guitar’s size and shape to ensure a proper fit and maximum protection.


About the author

Hi there! I’m Jack Little – an avid country music fan with tons of live country performances in the past. I used to play banjo in a country band with my best friend John Peters, who’s a true country harmonica master. Those were great years and I’m still mastering new banjo playing techniques, writing my own country songs and lyrics, and collecting banjos!

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