5 Best Harmonicas For Beginners [2021]

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Looking for the best harmonicas for beginners? Ready to get started playing this unique, fun instrument?

The harmonica is an amazing and very portable instrument that has a very distinctive sound. It also has a very interesting history and has gained a lot of recognition over the years.

The harmonica is a great instrument to use if you’re looking for a way to expand your sound as a solo performer, especially if you have a great harmonica holder. It’s also great for playing some simple melodies around the campfire, going crazy at a blues jam session, or relaxing after a hard day’s work.

As opposed to a chromatic harmonica, diatonic harmonicas, such as those listed below, are usually the kind that beginners will start with. Players use diatonic harmonicas in one key at a time. If in doubt, getting a C harmonica is usually a great place to start.

If you’re a beginner, you may not know how to get started on your search for a great beginner harmonica. Luckily, we’re here to help. Below we’ll give you our top choices of blues harps and we’ll list the best harmonicas for beginners that are on the market today.

Top Beginner Harmonicas – Quick View

Hohner Marine Band 1896 HarmonicaThe Hohner Marine Band 1896 Harmonica is the tried-and-true choice for beginners to the harmonica.

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Fender Blues Deluxe HarmonicaA surprisingly affordable option for beginner harmonica players considering the amount of quality and comfort it offers.

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The Hohner Blues HarpThe Hohner Blues Harp 532BX is another great harmonica choice that is ideal for beginners but that you can also easily grow with as your playing improves.

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Hohner Special 20 Diatonic HarmonicaThe Hohner Special 20 Diatonic Harmonica is a well-built and well-rounded harmonica that offers players a good mix of features and affordability.

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Anwenk Harmonica Key of CPlayers will be very satisfied with this affordable harmonica due to its nice appearance, full tone, and craftsmanship.

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Our Picks of the Best Harmonicas For Beginners

So, which harmonica is best for beginners to start with? Without further adieu, here is our list of the best beginner harmonicas on the market today.

1. Hohner Marine Band 1896 Harmonica

Best Harmonicas For Beginners

Our very top choice for starter harmonica players is the Hohner Marine Band 1896 Harmonica. This harmonica is the tried-and-true choice for beginners to the harmonica. However, advanced players appreciate this model as well. While this isn’t the very cheapest harmonica you can find, it’s still very affordable and offers the best value around.

This versatile harmonica can sound perfect for quite a range of genres. This harmonica suits blues players well thanks to its easy bending capabilities. Blues players who are looking for a great diatonic harmonica won’t be disappointed by this harp. This model has a bit of a reputation and boasts many famous users over the course of music history. Some of these include John Lennon, Neil Young, and Bruce Springsteen.

This handmade German harmonica offers both a great feel and an excellent sound. This harmonica offers a full tone along with all of the resonance you’re likely to need. The Marine Band Harmonica also lasts for years and you can expect it to sound great for a long time to come. This makes it a great instrument to grow with as your skills improve.

The Hohner Marine Band is somewhat lighter and smaller than a lot of the harmonicas out there. The instrument is very easy to play and responds fast to your vocal command. It has a high-quality comb, 20 reeds, and also 0.9mm brass reed plates. A protective case also comes with this harmonica.

Overall, the Hohner Marine Band Harmonica leaves little to be desired and its position on this list is well-earned. Owners of this high-quality instrument will get a lot of enjoyment and longevity out of this instrument at a more than reasonable price. This may just be the best starter harmonica out there.

2. Fender Blues Deluxe Harmonica

Fender Blued Deluxe Harmonica

The next harmonica, a model by Fender, also has a lot to offer budding harmonica players. While this harmonica doesn’t have as much name recognition as some of the Hohner harmonicas, this Fender harp still makes a great choice.

Featured as Amazon’s choice, this is a great cheap option for beginner harmonica players. This harmonica is surprisingly affordable considering its quality and comfort. While this isn’t the very highest quality instrument on this list it’s also not the most basic either.

This simple and easy to play harmonica is great players who are hoping to achieve an authentic blues sound. Fender seemed to work hard to create a comfortable instrument that is fun to play for players of all levels.

This instrument is made with blues players in mind and blues players will truly love the sound and playability this harmonica offers. While it’s great for blues players, it offers some versatility as well. Players of all genres will likely enjoy playing it.

The Fender Blues Deluxe Harmonica delivers a classic sound that may be due to the molded PVC comb and the brass reeds. This blues harmonica is very comfortable due to its traditional shape and the chromes metal covers.

Overall, this Fender harmonica would make a great choice for newbies and is truly one of the best harmonicas for beginners. While it doesn’t quite match the Marine Band harmonica listed above when it comes to features, it still offers quite a lot for the low price you’ll pay. This is the best cheap harmonica around and it fares well above others in its price range.

3. The Hohner Blues Harp

Best Hohner Harmonicas

The Hohner Blues Harp 532BX is another great harmonica choice that is ideal for beginners but that you can also easily grow with as your playing improves. If you’re a fan of the blues and want to do a lot of note bending, this might just be the harmonica that you need. This is the opposite of a toy. Instead, it is a professional musical instrument that feels, plays, and looks great.

This is a diatonic blues harmonica that is 4 inches long and it features 10 holes along with 20 reeds. The wooden comb helps create a more robust sound. This harmonica comes with a plastic carrying case to keep it protected.

This blues harp is crafted from brass and metal and this helps give the harmonica a huge, strong sound. It easily projects its tone across the room. This harmonica is a bit bigger and less on the light side. It also has a fuller sound than other options.

Overall, the Hohner Blues Harp is a truly professional harmonica that offers a lot to anyone looking to get started with the harmonica. Blues players will particularly find a lot to love in this Hohner brand harmonica. This is one of the best Hohner harmonicas for beginners that you’re likely to find.

4. Hohner Special 20 Diatonic Harmonica

Best Blues Harps by Hohner

The Hohner Special 20 Diatonic Harmonica is a well-rounded harmonica that offers players of all skill levels a good mix of features and affordability. This well-priced and well-built harmonica can help you create a lot of confidence in your playing.

With its 20 holes and Hohner craftsmanship, this harmonica features a great design that offers plenty of playing comfort. It feels very good to play and offers the player superior comfort. This harp allows players the tools they need to play a number of genres.

This harmonica is perfect for playing a variety of musical styles without spending too much. It offers a good mix of affordability and quality that is great for both beginners and professionals.

Unfortunately, intonation sometimes isn’t perfect on this harmonica. Still, it offers an amount of accuracy that will be more than enough for most players.

Overall, this Hohner harmonica would be a good option for budget-minded professional or a beginner who doesn’t want the most basic option. It offers a good deal of playability at a very reasonable price.

5. Anwenk Harmonica Key of C

Best Cheap Harmonicas


The Anwenk Harmonica is another good cheap option if you’re looking for a harmonica. It offers a decent amount of quality but is cheaper than many of the other options on this list.

The harmonica is perfect for sliding your lips while playing and is very comfortable to hold. The instrument’s ends are fully enclosed and this prevents excessive air leakage. It also helps allow for a rich and full tone. This 10 hole harmonica has the flexibility to work well with many types of music genres, whether that is blues, rock, folk, or pop.

This Anwenk Harmonica has a copper reed plate as well as a cover plate made of stainless steel. The instrument features a precision-made plastic comb and steel cover made of chrome. It also comes with some great extras including a cleaning cloth, instructions, and a durable case.

Unfortunately, this instrument isn’t as much of a true professional harmonica as some of the others on this list are. However, this harmonica would be great for beginners or kids to play while getting started on this unique instrument. While it’s not perfect for professional players, it’s still a good quality beginner harmonica.

Overall, this affordable harmonica is sure to satisfy most beginner players. This is due to its nice appearance, full tone, and decent quality craftsmanship.

Final Thoughts

Making the decision to start playing the harmonica is a great one. If you can play the harmonica it gives you a great way to jam with other musicians or pass away your free time. You’ll also have a great instrument that is incredibly portable and easy to get started playing.

By choosing one of the best harmonicas for beginners as your first, you’ll have a fun and painless time learning and experimenting with the instrument, and growing with your skills.

Looking to get started with an accordion instead? Check out our reviews of the best diatonic accordions for beginners now.