Around $500 I'd get a Cordoba C7 or a used C9 which offer good value for the money IMO and I've personally owned both in the past - see reviews done by Bradford Werner on youtube of Cordoba guitars. If you can tolerate a 660 scale length, I'd go for a used 1970's takamine C132, which is my current instrument.
"Success grants its rewards to a few, but is the dream of the multitudes.
Excellence is available to all, but is accepted only by a few." - Christopher Parkening