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Washburn Steel String Travel Acoustic Guitar

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Washburn Steel String Travel Acoustic Guitar

Washburn Steel String Travel Acoustic Guitar

The Washburn acoustic guitar is an excellent guitar for practicing, playing, and most especially being your musical travel companion. It is made from high-quality materials like its solid spruce top, strong mahogany neck and beautiful mahogany body.

In addition to the quality body, the Washburn acoustic guitar has one awesome full-sized feature: its neck. What really excited me when I first opened the case and at gazed at my little travel buddy was the full 24 inch scale, with 19 full frets, on the gorgeous Rosewood fingerboard.

The cherry on top it the Washburn acoustic guitar’s professional binding also quality inlay, good quality geared tuners and its molded case which fits into overhead storage compartments on most airlines.

Playability

The great thing about the small size of the Washburn acoustic guitar is that it allows for full playability of all of the 24 inch scale which features 19 full frets. There is no difficulty getting to the end of the fret board because of the diminutive body. The full-sized neck is extremely comfortable for fingering which will excite the experienced musicians wanting to run a full scale.

In addition to the small body size helping fret access, it also causes the Washburn acoustic guitar to weigh less. Much less. This beauty only weighs in at 2.5 pounds so it’s an excellent choice for those who get weary holding a larger bodied guitar but want the full, rich sound of one.

Sound

The Washburn acoustic guitar has a great production quality and richness that is synonymous with a full-sized body guitar with a slightly quieter output due to its size.Sometimes being quieter is a great thing though, because it has allowed me to play my Washburn acoustic guitar in camping areas and hotels without disturbing other guests. That is a huge travel instrument bonus.

Solid spruce, mahogany and rosewood are all excellent quality tonewoods that help propel the Washburn acoustic guitar into the realm of the greats.

I personally think the sound is more pleasing when fingerpicked with this guitar, but it plays beautifully with a pick as well. Bonus: three picks are included with this guitar kit.

Traveling with the Washburn Steel String Travel Acoustic Guitar

Something that always concerns me with traveling with my guitars, of any size, is to make sure my instrument will be safe. The case that comes with the Washburn acoustic guitar is a very high quality cordura case that has a molded interior with a hard foam lining.

The case also features inside and outside pockets that allow for small tuners, picks, mini playbooks, you name it! It also has luggage straps, backpack straps for even easier carrying, and three D-rings to adjust all the straps and clips for an exact fit for you to carry it.

Super Bonus: it’s sized to fit overhead storage bins in planes, so that you do not have to check in this guitar. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve nearly had a heart attack on the flight hoping that my instruments would not get damaged in general cargo bins!

Pros

  • Full 24" scale on a full-guitar-sized neck
  • Comes with a plush lined Cordura case with backpack straps
  • Beautiful mahogany body
  • SOLID spruce top
  • Kit includes a guitar strap and three picks
  • Beginners will enjoy the included Learn to Play CD ROM
  • Professionally bound body and bound Rosewood fingerboard
  • Super lightweight at 2.5 lbs
  • Fits into overhead airline compartments!

Cons

  • Sorry, lefties! It only comes in a right-handed version
  • For the uneducated passerby you may remind them of Tiny Tim playing “Tiptoe Through the Tulips” on a ukulele because of the small body size. I'm kidding! Although the size is similar to a ukulele. The sound is full-bodied and I can't come up with any other cons about this guitar personally.


Final Verdict

This is an awesome travel guitar. I would highly recommend to anyone wanting a smaller instrument to take on the road.  Its small size makes it a good guitar for younger players. Also excites the more experienced musicians with its full access to all 19 frets.

Crescent MG38-CF 38″ Acoustic Guitar

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Crescent MG38-CF 38″ Acoustic Guitar

I think we can safely say that the starter package with the Crescent acoustic guitar includes everything but the kitchen sink.  I think my Aunt Mary might actually make a tomato sandwich with this package! Seriously. It has an impressive number of accessories.

Ignoring the good quality, full-sized wooden Crescent acoustic guitar for a moment, let’s talk about the fact that the amazing price of the starter kit is what you would pay, if not less, just for the accessories included.

When I opened up my box it was like Christmas had come early!!There is an included pocket-sized pitch pipe and a full set of extra strings. A gig bag with a carrying strap with a guitar pick and a pickguard, and an awesome clip-on digital e-tuner.

The Main Event of the Crescent MG38-CF 38″ Acoustic Guitar Starter Package

So, now let’s talk about the guitar in this starter package. The Crescent acoustic guitar is a full-sized, full-bodied 38 inch guitar. It has a 17 inch body with a nice average 4 inch thickness, which is great for almost any player to hold and play.

Despite its full size, the Crescent acoustic guitar is pleasantly light for the beginning player, weighing in at only 4.4 pounds. This version of a steel string acoustic guitar is most commonly used for Country, Bluegrass and southern rock. Also can handle any genre of music.

It also features Linden binding, and quality wood construction. The geared tuners are made from brass and steel and stay in tune for a long time compared to other beginner acoustic guitars.This may sound trivial – it’s not. An angst-filled teenager banging on steel strings will put tuners to work!

The Sound of the Crescent MG38-CF 38″ Acoustic Guitar

Depending on the package you purchase, the wood construction varies a little. There are a few good wood varieties to order from but each features a bright, ringing tone in the sound quality. This is a bright sounding steel string acoustic guitar, and features a quality wood backing no matter which kit you decide to order.

In addition to the body’s good quality tone wood. The fretboard is made of the classic high quality Rosewood and features full-sized frets. The comfortable size and shape of the body of the Crescent acoustic guitar allows for Bluegrass flatpicking in addition to finger-picking folk and using a pick to blast out some rock and roll.

Beginner’s Appeal of the Crescent MG38-CF 38″ Acoustic Guitar

The size, shape and versatility of playing styles of the Crescent acoustic guitar makes it an excellent starting instrument choice. Not only does the price excite beginning players that aren’t sure if they want to jump off that cliff into the musical abyss, but the versatility of playing styles literally appeals to every budding musician out there.

Everything in this package is geared for the beginning player.

  • The digital tuner that is included is incredibly easy to use
  • There is an extra set of strings. In case you break one right away
  • The high quality brass geared tuners stay in tune even as you bail out some rock and roll
  • The wood construction not only gives great sound, but it's sturdy and durable
  • It comes with a gig bag and a carrying strap so you do not need to hold the guitar by the neck, or leave it out to get dusty or damaged
  • The kit includes a pickguard to protect your guitar from over-enthusiastic picking
  • The pitch pipe tuner that comes with it in addition to the digital tuner is pocket sized. This is perfect travel companion for taking your guitar camping or traveling


Pros

  • An absolutely complete 38 Inch Acoustic Guitar Set
  • Incredibly low price
  • Ideal for Beginners
  • Linden binding and wood construction
  • Geared Tuning
  • Wood framing
  • 6 Steel Strings plus a full extra set
  • Comes with a gig bag with carrying strap, a guitar pick,pickguard, digital e-tuner and pitch pipe tuner

Cons

    • Musicians interested in a higher sound quality will want to invest in an additional guitar for the stage. This is a perfect travel companion guitar, however not necessarily one for show.


Final Verdict

The Crescent MG38-CF 38″ Acoustic Guitar Starter Package has everything that a beginning guitar player could want. I highly recommend it as a package. Not only for the incredible price, also the wood framing and backing make it a durable quality guitar.

Jasmine S34C NEX Acoustic Guitar

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What is the Jasmine S34C NEX Acoustic Guitar?

A barn find.
Have you heard those stories about someone finding a 1934 coupe, or 1960’s Corvette in somebody’s barn untouched by time or weather in perfect condition? That’s what it’s like finding the Jasmine S34C  NEX acoustic guitar at this incredible price. Purchasing this guitar online is the musical barn find of the year.

How Does the Jasmine S34C NEX Acoustic Guitar Sound?

Impressive construction creates superior sound.

As any guitar enthusiast knows there are a few things that affect sound. The construction, the materials used, and the overall shape of the guitar. The Jasmine S34C NEX acoustic guitar is a Dreadnought style, but in all other ways is the Grand Lady of the ballroom in terms of guitar engineering.

The X-Bracing Master Engineering – Going with our ballroom analogy, the Grand Lady’s dress needs a good corset – in this case, x-bracing. The Jasmine S34C NEX features an advanced type of X-bracing pattern that is called forward-shifted, which places the bracing closer to the guitar body soundhole. This position creates a definitive tone detail and improved tone production.

Also, the advanced X-bracing pattern produces an amplified, animated sound in comparison to other acoustic guitars. The braces that the Jasmine S34C NEX acoustic guitar uses are quartersawn, meaning that they are exceptionally stronger and more stable than normal bracing wood. Quartersawn wood used in guitars have a distinctly brighter tone due to the density of the wood compared to flatsawn wood.

In addition to this, the braces have a scalloped design which allows the top to vibrate freely which produces a better overall tone clarity and length. The design also helps with the bracings rigidity.

The Grand Lady’s Dress – If you’ve never heard of the Jasmine S34C NEX, it is produced by the same exceptional craftsmen who make Takamine acoustic guitars.  The same level of quality and craftsmanship that goes into building a Takamine went into building the Jasmine S34C NEX Acoustic Guitar. This guitar features a Japanese laminated Spruce top which allows excellent sound and extreme durability while permitting the Jasmine S34C NEX to be sold at an extremely affordable price in comparison to a solid wood guitar.

Complementing the laminated Spruce is the Aboudikro or Sapele back and sides done in a natural finish. Sapele Is used for its sound clarity in many instruments such as ukuleles and harps, and has a beautiful finish reminiscent of mahogany. This high-end wood appearance compliments the Jasmine S34C NEX’s venetian-style cutaway and its orchestra style rich, full sound.

In addition to this, the Jasmine S34C NEX features a stunning Rosewood bridge plate, and a rosewood fretboard. The Rosewood is known for providing balanced and beautiful note separation. Furthering this guitars distinct sound.

Rounding out her appearance, the finish is a smooth satin which maximizes resonance and tone quality. It also features full body binding and chrome tuners as the cherry on the top.

Body Specs – The Grand Lady is both light and quick on her feet

This Jasmine S34C NEX is extremely lightweight, weighing in just under 6 pounds. The weight makes it excellent for a beginner. Although it is large, full-sized guitar measuring 48 inches long. It has a compact body, however, measuring at 18 inches, but thanks to the superior bracing and laminated tonewood delivers exceptional sound production.

The Jasmine S34C NEX has a 25.5 inch scale length with a slim neck for fast playing and finger sliding

Drawbacks

The only drawback I have come across with this particular guitar is due to its slimmer neck design. Inexperienced players that have just started their guitar journey may have a slight buzzing sound by accidentally hitting a neighboring string. This is not an issue for me because I have 7 years playing experience, but it is an issue that may happen to someone with no experience.

You need to purchase accessories and a case separately from this guitar, but the price leaves you plenty of room to purchase these things and still equal the cost of another beginners acoustic guitar, so, in my opinion it doesn’t really qualify as a drawback.

Pros

  • Rockin’ Dreadnought body style
  • Quality Laminate Japanese Spruce top
  • Sapele back and sides
  • Beautiful Rosewood Fingerboard and Fretboard
  • Extremely Affordable
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty
  • Rich, full tone production
  • Chrome Tuners
  • Advanced X-Bracing for tone clarity

Final Verdict

I was very surprised, by the high quality of the guitar construction. And the detail that went into the sound engineering for this affordable acoustic guitar. I would definitely recommend purchasing this guitar for those that want a louder tone production than some of the smaller classical acoustic guitars on the market. The Jasmine S34C NEX acoustic guitar will not disappoint you.

Yamaha C40 GigMaker

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Yamaha C40 GigMaker Classical Acoustic Guitar

Yamaha C40 GigMaker

It’s a Yamaha.

Before I even delve into a lengthy review about the Yamaha C40 Gigmaker guitar set, I need to let you know that I don’t typically have a company preference. I won’t tell you that this is the best beginner guitar on the market because Yamaha is the Cadillac of guitars, but the truth is, it really is the best guitar out there for the price. At least in my opinion.

Yamaha is known for its superior quality despite being very economical. There is no difference with this guitar quality when compared to a much more expensive model. In this respect it is not only really affordable, but almost suspiciously affordable.

What’s in the Yamaha C40 GigMaker Package?

Everything you need to start playing your first guitar, or travel with a good one.

Yamaha knew that they made a great product they offer their limited lifetime warranty with the package. It has 4.6 out of 5 stars on hundreds of Amazon reviews, and getting a good review consistently for a guitar is almost more difficult than a travel hotel. How many good reviews do you see on an economical motel? That says a lot for the overall quality of the Yamaha C40.

This is the complete acoustic classical guitar set up for beginning players. This Yamaha C40 Gigmaker package supplies you with everything that you need to start playing, but the guitar is good enough quality that anyone with intermediate or advanced guitar skills will be extremely pleased with this as an inexpensive travel guitar.

The Yamaha C40 Gigmaker kit includes the nylon strings for the classical guitar sound and setup, a guitar case and a beginner CD with examples of songs for music learners to listen to and attempt to play along with.

What is the Yamaha C40?

The Yamaha C40 is a full sized guitar at just over 47” long, but has a compact 17.5” body which is great for beginners. It offers a wider fretboard which makes it easier for beginners who have a difficult time with strings placed too closely together. You don’t need to worry about accidentally touching the string next to the one you’re trying to play and creating a buzzing sound.

How does the Yamaha C40 Sound?

The sound quality of the Yamaha C40 is superior. That sound is created with the solid wood Spruce guitar top, the Japanese rosewood fretboard and bridge, the classic Nato neck and the Indonesian mahogany backing. All beautiful quality tone wood. The fretboard boasts 19 frets and beautiful chrome tuners.

While this guitar is not handmade, which is disappointing for those who want a handcrafted guitar (you also could not dream of getting a handmade guitar for this price) Yamaha has constructed the Yamaha C40 within exact quality parameters. Because it is created by a computer-controlled machine, just like a CNC machine making spinal grafts you would use in surgery, the Yamaha C40 is engineered to sound as beautiful as it looks.
It really is a beautiful guitar.  When I unpackaged it I thought at first I had received the wrong model!  I am very impressed by the wood quality in an expensive beginner guitar.

Downfalls of the Yamaha C40

The only issue I have ever had with my Yamaha C40 is the sound projection is a little lower than some acoustic guitars due to its more compact body style.  Acoustic guitars are by their nature low projectors so it’s not really an issue worth discussing in my opinion.  If you want loud sound with this particular model, I suggest amplifying it and you’ll be good to go.

Pros

  • Nylon strings make life easier for beginner’s fingers
  • Compact body makes playing easier for beginners
  • Wider fretboard reduces double-string playing for beginners
  • Beautiful tone woods used in construction
  • Yamaha Warranty
  • Case and Beginner CD included in package
  • Extremely Affordable Bargain
  • Deep bass sound despite compact body

Final Verdict

I would definitely recommend the Yamaha C40 Gigmaker package to anyone wanting to learn to play who is large enough to hold a full-sized guitar.  The nylon strings make your fingers happier when learning to play and the fretboard is not only beautiful but user-friendly. I can’t stress enough how surprisingly low the price is for the quality of the guitar.  Yamaha made a winner in the C40!

Rogue RA-090 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

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What are you getting with the Rogue RA-090 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar?

The terrier of acoustic guitars.

The Rogue RA-090 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar reminds me of growing up with my Uncle’s pet terrier, Splotchy. It’s a mid-sized acoustic guitar much like the terrier is a mid-sized dog, but also similar to the terrier is the Rogue RA-090’s full, robust sound projection, much like the full bark of Splotchy.

Its indomitable will not to be taken over in sound and tone by larger guitars, and its unyielding durability remind me of my Uncle’s terrier, playing and barking for hours on end.

The Rogue RA-090 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar takes energetic playing and rough-and-tumble practicing from young musicians without breaking the rhythm. Splotchy would be proud.

Construction of the Rogue RA-090 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

Terrier-sized – The Rogue RA-090 is a six string compact size Dreadnought acoustic guitar measuring in at 41 inches. It features a white wood body that has a 25 3/8 inch scale length for playing over the frets.

Despite being a smaller guitar it features a full 20 frets, 14 of which are open. Also, it features a dovetail neck joint and Japanese NATO wood neck for durability and tone sustainability.

Craftsmanship – In addition, it features a beautifully painted maple ridge, fingerboard and fret board. The Rogue features a c-shaped neck with nickel hardware and covered tuners. Because of the C-shape of the neck string division is a little easier for younger musicians and beginning players to separate the lower and upper 3 strings.

It provides a nice, comfortable natural curve for the beginning player to learn finger placement.

Terrier-weight – It is extremely lightweight, weighing in at 4.5 pounds so anyone having difficulty holding a heavier guitar will be able to use the Rogue RA-090 easily and comfortably. This is a guitar you can take camping or to an outdoor bonfire and carry it around all evening without getting tired.

It is the perfect size for beginning musicians to take to school for band or instructive classes.

Splotchy’s Energy – Perhaps because of the smaller size the Rogue RA-090 is surprisingly durable. I purchased the Rogue RA-090 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar for my son to start taking his first official music classes in middle school and it has managed to survive the school bus, his friends and severely destructive band mates.

What does the Rogue RA-090 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar Sound Like?

The bark the neighborhood hears.

Even though it is a condensed size for smaller musicians, the body depth and overall width bring out a balanced sound and surprisingly loud projection. The Rogue RA-090 is known for its vigorous mid-range tones. The white wood body is a perfect tonewood to bring out those mid-range tones at full projection.

The Japanese NATO wood neck sustains the sound without losing any strength in the final finish. The Maple brings sound clarity and is well known as a crisp tone wood.

It has a surprisingly loud projection for its price and size, and is a great guitar for my son to step up into intermediate playing. Just like I ran with and tumbled Splotchy about for hours on end growing up, my son has played his little heart out on the Rogue RA-090 and it has survived.

Pros

  • Ridiculous I Won the Lottery Low Price
  • Full 20 frets
  • Full tone projection
  • Smaller size for beginners or young musicians
  • Lightweight for easy use and carry
  • Beautiful white wood natural finish
  • C-shaped neck
  • Dovetail neck joint for stability

Cons

  • If you are over 6’3” with a long arm span and torso a larger guitar may be a better choice.

Final Verdict

I bought the Rogue RA-090 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar for my son and have never regretted it. I would recommend this for anyone looking for an affordable guitar for beginning players of any age, or younger players even in the intermediate stage. It is a comfortably sized guitar for smaller musicians. Also delivers great punchy tone and full projection from its compact size. The quality surpasses the price.

Epiphone EJ-220SCE Acoustic Guitar

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Epiphone EJ-220SCE Acoustic Guitar

It’s an Epiphone.

For those in the know Epiphone is a name in acoustic guitars that demands respect. It is the oldest and most respected instrument maker in America, and has been making instruments for every style of music since 1873.

There is no style of music that has swept across the nation that Epiphone has not been on the forefront of, designing and creating the most modern and well-respected instruments of the age. Now, in the 21st century, Epiphone continues its technological breakthroughs and helps advance the sound of music with the Epiphone EJ-220SCE Acoustic Guitar.

Design of the Epiphone EJ-220SCE Acoustic Guitar

Classic Sound and Powerful Presence – I purchased the Epiphone because of it smaller size and utterly gorgeous cutaway design. I fell in love with the shape of this guitar before I even heard the sound. Once I began to play it, I never regretted my decision.

Bonus: I am 5’6’’ so the Epiphone EJ-220SCE’s length at 43.5” was very comfortable and playable for me.

This guitar is a modified version of what Epiphone calls “The King of the Flat Tops” which was the J-200 series that was created in 1937 by Epiphone. As the newest model, the Epiphone EJ-220SCE acoustic guitar features beautiful and functional cut away for extra fret access and a preamp EQ.

Play like the Legends – I am a fan of older country, rockabilly and fifties rock and roll music. The sound and shape of this beautiful Epiphone reminds me of listening to Rosanne Cash playing “Tennessee Flattop Box” and I feel like rocking out with the greats of music history everytime I put my hand on it.

In fact, I’m not alone in this. The father to this guitar was used by Don Everly, Buddy Holly, Elvis Presley and Emmylou Harris.

Since this is the new generation. However, the Epiphone EJ-220SCE gives you all of the complex sound and beauty of the historic guitar at a much more affordable price tag. And with a modern electrical pick up system so that your sound can be amplified as far and as wide as you want the dancing to go. History reborn.

Let Your Fingers Dance – The Epiphone EJ-220SCE acoustic guitar has a 25.5 inch playing scale with 14 open frets and the cutaway for extra fret access. It also features a Rosewood fingerboard and Pearl crown inlays.

In addition to this it has Epiphone’s custom sloped Dovewing headstock with gold screws and diecast gold Grover tuners. Gorgeous style to flaunt onstage.

How Does the Epiphone EJ-220SCE Acoustic Guitar Sound?

The ej200 style Epiphone acoustic guitar is quite easily one of the most recognizable and famous guitars of America and across the world. It offers a deep and powerful projection that dominates the stage and drew in thousands over the radio. The Epiphone EJ-220SCE has a sound projection above and beyond any other acoustic guitar on the market.

The guitar features a solid Spruce top with a select Maple back and a beautiful classical rosewood moustache-style bridge. The Maplewood body produces a clear crisp complex sound while the spruce provides robust projection.

Epiphone / Shadow Germany’s eSonic2 Preamp System

The Epiphone EJ-220SCE also sports an eSonic2 preamp system with an easy-to-use built-in tuner. Included in the controls on this preamp are:

  • A Master Volume dial
  • The NanoFlex Tone Pickup
  • The NanoMag Tone Pickup
  • Stereo Blend sound
  • A super helpful Low Battery indicator
  • Phase switch to eliminate unwanted feedback
  • Requires two 2032 lightweight, long-lasting lithium watch batteries

State-of-the-Art Stereo Pickups

Located under the compensated saddle is the unique NanoFlex low-impedance pickup. This amazing pickup not only detects string vibration, but also body and top end vibrations for a full-bodied acoustic tone. This pickup amplifies all the rich sound without the harshness of a piezo.

In addition to the NanoFlex pickup is the NanoMag pickup mounted at the fingerboard. The NanoMag captures all the highs and lows, including a wide range of harmonics between its 3 Samarian-Cobalt magnets and an integrated active circuit.

Drawbacks

The Epiphone EJ-220SCE weighs in at 12 pounds. Because it’s a slightly heavy acoustic guitar.  That’s the price you pay for fine quality solid wood!  Although I don’t typically recommend a strap for acoustic guitars because the weight of the Epiphone EJ-220SCE may call for one for extended play periods.

Pros

  • Beautiful classis design with majestic cutaway
  • Quality hardware
  • Gold cast tuners and screws
  • Sloped Dovewing headstock
  • Epiphone’s world-renowned quality
  • Rosewood bridge
  • Maple back
  • Spruce Top
  • Incredibly clear, complex sound
  • NanoFlex, low-impedance pickup
  • Nanomag pickup
  • Built-in Tuner

Final Verdict

I’m blown away by the strong sound projection and stage presence of the Epiphone EJ-220SCE. I feel like I am the master of the stage playing this acoustic guitar even when I am alone and practicing in my garage. I highly recommend this guitar for anyone looking for a powerful sound and old school beauty.

Fender CD-60 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar Review

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Fender CD-60 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

What Is the Fender CD-60 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar?

This Fender CD-60 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar has a beautiful mahogany wood neck with a 20-Fret Rosewood Fingerboard. Rosewood is known for it’s quality in acoustic guitars and goes perfectly with the guitar finish. The Fender CD-60 also sports a Rosewood bridge with a compensated saddle. What is a compensated saddle? It is a bridge saddle that has a staggered profile to make the playing pitch more accurate – that is to say, better sound.

This particular Fender CD-60 also features a laminated Mahogany top with scalloped X-Bracing (sturdy), and a laminated mahogany back and sides.  Some die hard solid wood fans would say the laminate is a deterrent, but, it keeps the guitar inexpensive while maintaining those fantastic mahogany mellow tones.

In addition to the lessened expense, the laminate helps reduce the overall weight. Which is great for extended play sessions because the Fender CD-60 Dreadnought is a very large acoustic guitar. The laminate also makes a very sturdy body which has held up well with me traveling in the van, on stage and being banged around by my band mates.  We play in smaller venues and limited space with a large instrument can be perilous.  The dreadnought dreads not my clumsy nature.

How does it feel to play and hear the Fender CD-60 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar?

 

You’re playing a Dreadnought. It’s a beast!  This particular Bad Boy, the Fender CD-60 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar measures in at a lofty 47” so it is bigger than your average sized acoustic guitar.  You can’t help but feel like the biggest band member in the room!

You Don’t Have to Be a Giant. I have medium hands, not giant hands, not Marco Rubio joking about Donald Trump’s Tiny Man Hands, just average hands. The Fender CD-60 Dreadnought is a larger than average guitar. Luckily, the neck is a great width and not as oversized as the body and is very playable for almost anyone.

Deep, Bold, Enriched, Loud Sound. The tones, while a little mellow due to the quality mahogany laminates of the soundboard, are deep and resounding thanks to the thick body. Peering into the sound hole for a dropped pick is like staring into the Mariana Trench. The music produced out of this guitar is so powerful and crisp. It can easily stand alone as a solo instrument instead of being a backup guitar hidden in the band.

I like to play country blues, southern rock and rockabilly similar to the likes of Reverend Horton Heat. The Fender CD-60 let me play the softer, slow bluesy songs with its mellow quality, and had more than enough power to jam out the raunchiest bits of rock I could inflict on it, too.

In addition to its sound variety, one thing I noticed was the sound stays clear when picked, but I when I finger-picked a few tunes there was a vibration and expiration of sound like a solid wood folk acoustic guitar. This is an exceptionally nice surprise, and one not typically found in any laminate acoustic guitars.  That speaks volumes to me about the quality of the Fender CD-60 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar.

The action was very comfortable for me to play more difficult chords. Because it was lower than other guitars I have played.  Very nice to press and smooth transitions for blues and southern rock jam outs. It stays in tune for extended periods and has a consistent sound.

Pros

  • ​Great Price for the full size and quality
  • ​It comes with a manufacturer warranty
  • ​I know it's a personal thing, but a truly beautiful guitar
  • ​Mahogany laminates send out strong, heavy mellow tones
  • Large body booms out crisp tones, everything you want in a Dreadnought

Cons

Sorry Lefties!

  • It does not currently come in a left hand option

    Final Vertict

    This acoustic guitar is one I would definitely recommend. A beginner needing to play a larger guitar or anyone in the intermediate stages of acoustic guitar playing who is ready to step into a gorgeous instrument.  The sound quality is great enough that a professional could use this as an inexpensive standalone instrument. The price is really reasonable and the sound quality is great, making it a great band guitar as well.

38″ Black Acoustic Guitar Starter Package

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38″ Black Acoustic Guitar Starter Package

What Is In the 38″ Black Acoustic Guitar Starter Package?

This kit comes with everything you need to start out with the basics of playing an acoustic guitar. If you’re nervous about playing for the first time, or get overwhelmed with having to put things together without a demonstration for the first time – this kit has you covered. The guitar comes pre-strung with 6 steel strings, ready to play your first ballad.

Get over excited about playing like your favorite 80’s hair band and pop a string? This kit has you covered! It comes with an EXTRA set of strings.

Worried about breaking a nail or realize your fingers get tender playing? – They will until you build up your finger pickin’ calluses – this kit has you covered. It comes with a guitar pick.

In addition to that is a shoulder strap and nylon (i.e. washable!) guitar bag to carry it around so you don’t need to worry about leaving it open or carrying it by the neck. Think of it like a baby carrier for your very first guitar! What would you name your very first guitar? I use the guitar bag as a storage cover in my house just to keep dust, pet hair, etc. getting in the sound hole when not in use in my high-traffic house.

Also included in the 38″ Black Acoustic Guitar Starter Package is a pitch pipe – super useful and super necessary to those who know how to tune and play.  For extreme novices like me, a weird plastic 6-holed tool. One thing I discovered early is if you want to play with anyone singing remotely in tune with you or playing another instrument with you, you need to know how to tune a guitar. So again, this kit has you covered!  This pitch pipe is such an awesome add-in to this package because:

  • It’s a completely portable method for tuning an acoustic guitar to standard pitches
  • This pitch pipe only plays the notes of the open strings of the guitar and not the extra notes you would tune in-between for another instrument like a piano or your Aunt Mabel’s singing
  • Look Ma! No Hands! Seriously, this is an awesome tuner – no hands required! You can hold the pitch pipe easily in your mouth and blow to hear the pitch and use your hands to strum and tune the guitar.

Why Did I Choose the 38″ Black Acoustic Guitar Starter Package?

I chose the 38″ Black Acoustic Guitar Starter Package for a few reasons:

    Awesome low price – I mean, really unbeatable price for an average sized guitar
It is a solid wood guitar, not composite or laminate and I wanted to learn on real wood like an old hand-crafted piece. In my head I picture learning by a campfire and picking on something you would see in a John Wayne movie, not a plastic beginner’s version of a guitar like my toddler playing Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star on his 18” version with a battery next to me.
    Neutral Black Gloss Color – I love beautifully stained wood but I also know I am going to be rough and make mistakes my first time around with this guitar. I’m going to drop it, I’m going to slam my pick down the front of the soundboard when I completely miss the strings a few times the first week, and I’m just clumsy in general.  I also secretly want to be a rock star in my head and can’t wait to put my favorite stickers on this guitar or paint my own custom piece on that empty blank canvas on the back!

How does it feel to play the 38″ Black Acoustic Guitar?

Comfortable Beginner’s Guitar

It’s a nice average size at 38” with a slightly shorter fretboard with 19 frets. It’s also shallow, making it easier to handle for beginners for arm movement, and it’s very lightweight making it portable and user-friendly for nearly anyone.

Pros

  • Extremely Lightweight
  • Comes with a pitch pipe tuner
  • Comes with a Product Warranty
  • Comes with an Extra Set of Strings
  • All real wood; no laminate composite
  • Classic Black Gloss Finish matches everything
  • Comes with a shoulder strap and a nylon carrying bag

Cons

  • It does not currently come in a left hand option

Final Verdict

I would recommend the 38″ Black Acoustic Guitar Starter Package to anyone in the beginning stages of acoustic guitar playing who is ready to try their first instrument.  The price is really unbeatable for the complete set and allows you to purchase everything you need to try playing an acoustic steel-string guitar without breaking the bank or running to the music store when you break your first string.

Schoenhut Steel 6-String Acoustic Guitar Review

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Schoenhut Acoustic Guitar

What Is the Schoenhut Acoustic Guitar?

The Schoenhut Steel 6-String Acoustic Guitar is half-sized wood and composite acoustic guitar designed for the budding young musician.  It’s recommended for children aged 6 and up, but to be perfectly honest I bought this for my 4 year old daughter.

She really wanted a guitar and this model came in pink and seemed to be a very nice quality for a super reasonable price for the abuse it was bound to take from her, her twin brother and 2 year-old brother who also loves to play. I was not disappointed!

Here’s a breakdown of the Schoenhut Acoustic Guitar:

Schoenhut Steel 6-String Acoustic Guitar Sound Quality and Build

It’s built like a brick outhouse!

The Schoenhut acoustic guitar has a great design with a double-curved body, which not only enhances the surprising sound quality, but the overall robustness of the body. The soundboard is not composite but solid birch, which is excellent for resonance and good quality tone.  A bonus for parents, like me, who want their young ones to play without hearing loud practicing beginners for hours on end, is that the birch wood requires a hard strike to create loud volume. Consequently, this guitar soundboard naturally produces a much quieter, more mellow tone than other woods or a composite soundboard.

In addition to the great body design, the quality of the manufacturer’s work on the body was great. It was curved nicely with no rough edges, sharp turns or dings. Nothing on it to snag on the little ones playing and it arrived looking fantastic!  What is more, the Schoenhut Steel 6-String Acoustic Guitar has a hardwood neck for extra rigidity. I can vouch for this as I have seen it stepped on by two children and a German Sheppard with no warping or apparent damage.  I cannot say enough how well this guitar has held up.

Moreover, the attention to the needs of the little players is also seen in the fretboard, which is molded from a composite which guarantees proper height and spacing of the frets, and will not turn or pop off like a metal fret might when damaged.  They were not painted on my model when it arrived so you may want to mark it or paint it different colors if your child learns better by visual guides rather than by touch.  Our local music teacher is a fanatic about learning by touch so this was not an issue for us, but my friend prefers visual playing and consequently painted his son’s Schoenhut acoustic guitar. This is a matter of personal preference.

Playability of the Schoenhut Steel 6-String Acoustic Guitar

To be honest I was surprised by how great the sound quality was of the Schoenhut acoustic guitar. This little instrument has some amazing tones for its size and construction.  I think this is in part to the birch wood soundboard and composite back working well to reflect the tone quality and the fact that it uses steel strings.

As an example, we frequently have bonfires on the weekend and my friend’s acoustic guitar popped a string so we pulled out my daughter’s Schoenhut and jammed away.  Despite the funny image of full grown men using a small pink guitar on a cooler in a truck bed, it not only stayed in tune being passed around and strummed on rather roughly for a few hours but also sounded really good.

Pros

  • Birch soundboard,Super Lightweight,
  • Small size with a large body for superior sound reflection,
  • Hardwood Neck rather than,
  • composite for sturdiness,
  • Decent sound quality for the low cost,
  • Good Tuners and steel strings for higher quality sound,
  • This guitar can take a beating and survive – very solid little instrument

Cons

The con that’s not a con.
  • The molded composite fretboard might bother some die-hard acoustic guitar players, but, the mold produces evenness and quality and no chance of a fret being knocked loose by the younger players this guitar is geared for. The concern I’ve heard is that composite can be worn down over time by the steel strings, but I have had this guitar for over a year and see no evidence of that yet.
  • Steel strings may require supervision in very young children.

Verdict

I would recommend this guitar for anyone with children 3 -13 years old.  It’s really well made for the price, and the sound is surprisingly good. Our music teacher had no issues with this guitar as a beginner’s acoustic guitar for real music lessons either.

Yamaha FG700S Solid Top Acoustic Guitar Review

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Yamaha FG700S Solid Top Acoustic Guitar

What Is the Yamaha FG700S Acoustic Guitar?

The Yamaha FG700S is the perfect inexpensive guitar for beginners learning to play and for the experienced who want a great quality campfire instrument. This particular acoustic guitar gives you the incredible intense tones and the deep sound quality of a more expensive guitar, without the fear of a $900 price tag if you damage it while camping or playing at a beach party.

Yamaha has four series of acoustic guitars but the FG (according to usa.yamaha.com and a slew of guitar magazines) is “the number one sold acoustic guitar of all time.” I did not see sales numbers to verify that comment, but, the Yamaha FG700S Solid Top Acoustic Guitar has been around over 50 years so there is no doubt it is a fan favorite among many types of players.

How does it feel to play the Yamaha FG700S Solid Top Acoustic Guitar?

I have to say the Yamaha FG700S feels really comfortable to play. That is to say it’s a nice average size – not too big, not too little.  It’s sized well enough that it fits anyone over the age of 7 reasonably well. Also, it has a slimmer neck than most acoustic guitars and that makes it easier to play more difficult chords, especially for those with smaller hands or anyone wanting to rock hard with some impressive barre work.

Similarly, the action makes it great to play for the average person as well. The distance between the frets and the strings made it easy to press down for more powerful chords and super firm sound delivery.

In addition to the comfortable size and string placement on the Yamaha FG700S Solid Top acoustic guitar, is that it is such a sturdy guitar. I play at campfires frequently and I have not seen any indication of damage after being dropped on a cooler (more than once). The solid Sitka Spruce top is just that; solid.  Super durable construction with lighter weight woods (spruce top and nato sides and back) that makes the overall guitar lightweight as well – another reason the Yamaha FG700S is great for beginners or a practiced musician’s travel instrument – you won’t get tired carrying it around. The nato wood is a popular Asian wood which helps translate into the cost savings on this guitar – it’s a good quality wood that is fairly inexpensive for Yamaha to use, which passes on to us, the players – woohoo!

Yamaha FG700S Solid Top Acoustic Guitar Sound Quality

Another reason the solid Sitka Spruce top on the Yamaha FG700S is so important is because Sitka spruce is an excellent soundboard. Having a solid top on an acoustic guitar is a must-have for good sound quality, and the Yamaha’s FG700S Solid Top Acoustic Guitar is one of the best priced options on the market with this quality tone wood. Sitka spruce is very popular because it gives a mellow tone with a relaxed response. The nato back and sides also produce a nice tone, and the fingerboard is constructed using rosewood, which is the expected choice for acoustic guitars for its high quality.

In addition to the good quality tone wood on the body and soundboard, the Yamaha FG700S uses diecast chrome tuners which hold tune for weeks versus the cheap tuners typically found on a guitar in this price range. I like to do acoustic versions of classic and alternative rock, and the tuners on the Yamaha FG700s took the beating for almost a month before I had to retune!

The only sound issue I can find is if you want intensely loud sound, like with any other acoustic guitar, you’ll need to get a few electronic accessories to boost it, but the Yamaha FG700S has pretty intense tones on its own without an amplifier.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Solid Top equals Solid Construction
  • You can order it in a left-handed version
  • Incredible sound quality for the low cost
  • ​Slim neck for easier chords and smaller players
  • It comes with a Yamaha’s limited lifetime warranty
  • Die-cast tuners stay in tune even after hard-hitting songs
  • ​The High-gloss finish looks awesome in stage lights or a campfire!

Cons

  • I really cannot find any cons to this awesome guitar. The only issue I can see is that if you like to wear a strap with your acoustic guitars, the Yamaha FG700S acoustic guitar only comes with a peg on the bottom – bridge side – of the guitar, not on the neck side, so you would have to put a strap around the headstock like an old school rockabilly music legend from the 1950’s or install a strap peg.

Final Verdict

This acoustic guitar is one I would definitely recommend to anyone learning to play for the easiness of size, weight and neck width, and the impressively low cost for the quality.  I would also recommend this to more experienced players as an inexpensive travel guitar both for the sturdiness of construction and its outstanding sound quality.