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I want to get a NEW acoustic guitar; any recommendations? [merged]

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I want to get a NEW acoustic guitar; any recommendations? [merged]

Old 07-18-03, 07:01 PM
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I want to get a NEW Acoustic guitar; Any reccomendations?

Ive been saving my cash and really love playing acoustic guitar. Ive been playing guitar for 5 years and I think its time for a new acoustic. I already have a Yamaha but want to get one thats an acoustic thats electric and just turn my Yamaha into a classical. The ****** thing is that the music stores here SUCK! Theres not much veriety so I kinda have to go blind buying an acoustic.

So far Im thinking: Ovation - 1861 Standard Balladeer Acoustic-Electric
http://www.musiciansfriend.com/srs7/.../base_id/34650

Ive played Ovations and Applause guitars and I really like em; so Im thinking of going for this one.

Any thoughts or suggestions?
Old 07-18-03, 07:38 PM
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Pretty good guitar. Take a look at a few other models, just to see what kind of variety you can get for your money. Martin makes a few that are around that price range. Takamine is a pretty good guitar for a couple hundred dollars less. Epiphone (made by Gibson) makes a pretty decent guitar too, and those are pretty inexpensive.
Old 07-19-03, 11:21 PM
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Is $700 the upper price range or is that negotiable? How good of a guitar to you want? One to play for the rest of your life or one to last you for a while but maybe not forever? Nicer ones I've played are Martins and Guilds in the high end. Seagulls are very nice middle range guitars. Takamine is a bit lower but still better than most Yamahas and offer a decent acoustic-electric line. Ovations are decent (got to love the Leafer design) but I have a problem with a plastic body guitar. I know you want an acoustic electric (I have one myself and its great) but don't get too hung up on it. A great sounding guitar is the important part and remember you can always get a nice acoustic pickup for the guitar for like hundred bucks. Also, make sure you get one that is made out of decent wood and will age well. My Takamine EG-40C had a pressed wood body and therefore will always sound the same (and most likely worse) as the years progress. However, my sister's guitar is made out of much better wood and continues to amaze me how it sounds better and better each year as it ages.

Damn this makes me want to get a new acoustic too. There is nothing better in the world then opening up the case of a nice acoustic guitar and the sweet smell of vanilla comes wafting up to you.

Oh yeah, and although Musicians Friend is great and I buy tons of things from them (amps, electric guitars, effects, etc.), I would be bit wary about buying an acoustic online. I personally feel that you have to always physically play the exact acoustic guitar that you are going to buy. Just my opinion though.

Another quick note, my sister has an Alvarez guitar. They are really cheap as they aren't really the most popular brand but they have a reputation for great sound. My next acoustic guitar will probably be either an Alvarez or a Seagull (that is until I can afford the high end Guilds or Martins)... of course all these have to wait until I buy my Gibson Les Paul... damn I'm gonna be poor.

Check out the user reviews at harmony central. They are great for any sort of guitar or equipment. Here's alink .
Old 07-20-03, 11:58 PM
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^ What schizopak said...

I've owned several axes over the years, both flavors, and currently play an Alvarez-Yairi w/ exotic woods (if you buy an Alvarez, make sure it's from the Yairi line) exclusively, which I LOVE... It's not an electric/acoustic so I guess that doesn't help much, but, as mentioned, you can always drop a pickup in if you wanted to... I've owned acoustics from Martin, Gibson and Ovation in the past and none of them could touch my Yairi. Although the Martin's have great tones, I don't really care for the necks.

Another maker that I highly recommend is Breedlove > http://www.breedloveguitars.com/main.html < but they are pricey... Some amazing guitars though which sound and play as nice as they look.

Off topic, but it's as good a place as any since this is a guitar thread, as far as electrics go... I've owned many and sold em' all but my American Custom Strat which I dropped Seymour Duncans into last year... There's nothing in the world, PRS included, that feels like an American Strat and once you beef up the guts they are amazing.

Last edited by Johnny Zhivago; 07-21-03 at 12:01 AM.
Old 07-21-03, 12:07 AM
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I tend to go for a thicker sound with electrics. I have a Gibson Les Paul Standard. If I tweak my amp the right way I can get a nice juicy sound out of it.

One guitar I've always wanted to get was a Rickenbacker. Years ago I was in Sam Ash in NYC on 48th Street and they had a few Ric's, I can't remember the exact model number but I think they were 350's. They were pretty affordable, around $500 at the time. I haven't been able to find one since though. Might have been discontinued. Rics have a nice bell like tone to them. Plus being a huge Beatle fan I've always had a facination with them.

Last edited by Captain Harlock; 07-21-03 at 12:17 AM.
Old 07-21-03, 12:55 AM
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He wants an acoustic guitar, not an electric.

If you've got some serious cash get a Taylor. Nothing is better than a Taylor. They are releasing some "cheaper" versions of their guitars so you may want to check them out. If you can't afford a Taylor, I would say look a Martin or a Alvarez-Yari. Those are really the only 3 types of acoustic I would recommend playing if you have some dough. Nothing else really compares to them, especailly the Taylor's.
Old 07-21-03, 11:22 AM
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Don't buy an Ovation unless you absolutely know that's what you want. In my experience, most people who bought one of those guitars (including myself) ended up regretting it after a few years. They have an artificial quality to the sound that gets more and more annoying the longer you own one.

I would go for a Takamine or an Alvarez. If you can find a decent, inexpensive Martin or Taylor that might be an option. I would avoid Yamahas - they make decent guitars that sound good, but I don't think they are as durable as some other makes.

Also, there's a brand called Seagull that has some excellent, inexpensive models. I don't know if they're still in business or not.
Old 07-22-03, 02:08 PM
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I cant answer to the full extent now due to being at work, but I think you guys are saying I should get a different guitar!

Im thinking this right here:
http://www.musiciansfriend.com/srs7/.../base_id/59002

My only question is, what does it mean when it says "with electronics"?

What do you guys think?
Old 07-22-03, 02:18 PM
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Never played one but it looks interesting... Can't vouch for how they sound or play. You should call around and see if anyone local has one, go in and try it out first if possible, you don't have to buy it there. The "with electronics" refers to the EQ, I'm sure...

My only concern would be with the woods... What exactly is HPL textured finish? Anyone?
Old 07-22-03, 02:28 PM
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Originally posted by Johnny Zhivago
Never played one but it looks interesting... Can't vouch for how they sound or play. You should call around and see if anyone local has one, go in and try it out first if possible, you don't have to buy it there. The "with electronics" refers to the EQ, I'm sure...

My only concern would be with the woods... What exactly is HPL textured finish? Anyone?
I don't think this guitar is made of real wood (I could be wrong). I would avoid a Martin that is this high-tech. They make great traditional steel string acoustics, but their forays into other types of guitars have been less than successful.
Old 07-22-03, 11:23 PM
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Originally posted by Ravenous
I cant answer to the full extent now due to being at work, but I think you guys are saying I should get a different guitar!

Im thinking this right here:
http://www.musiciansfriend.com/srs7/.../base_id/59002

My only question is, what does it mean when it says "with electronics"?

What do you guys think?
"with electronics" probably just means that it has a built in pickup with equalizer like any other acoustic-electric.

man, i'm pleasantly surprised that several you know of and play Alvarez guitars! it breaks my heart every time that i play my sister's guitar (which i bought her). her guitar cost half as much as mine yet sounds twice as good. I'll definitely look into the Alvarez-Yairi for my next one.
Old 07-23-03, 05:31 PM
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I want to ditto the guy who said to stay away from Ovations. I had one and I liked it for about 6 months - then it just got worse and worse. It sounded bad and it just felt bad.

I got a Taylor about 7 years ago and I couldn't be happier with it - this guitar actually gets better with age - I go into a guitar shop now and none of the new Taylors play and feel as good as mine does.
Old 07-23-03, 11:33 PM
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Originally posted by slop101
I want to ditto the guy who said to stay away from Ovations. I had one and I liked it for about 6 months - then it just got worse and worse. It sounded bad and it just felt bad.

I got a Taylor about 7 years ago and I couldn't be happier with it - this guitar actually gets better with age - I go into a guitar shop now and none of the new Taylors play and feel as good as mine does.
Which brings up one quality that any of the Ovations or other non-wood guitars are bound to have... Over time, they will not "age" the way a nice acoustic will. I too have owned an Ovation, one of the slimline Elites I think it was (mainly for running scales and solos on - I went through my Al Di Meola phase) and it was fine for that but had no versatility at all... It also felt very foreign, for lack of a better term, after spending more time with some nice acoustics... Sold it for what I payed for it (at a guitar show, good discount) and have had no regrets.

Which bring me back to the original posts about just dropping a thinline pickup into a nice acoustic if you really want amplification sans a mic.

schizopak > As I said above, I've played many and my Alvarez-Yairi just gets better with each passing day. Martins do as well, but I've never liked the necks. I will add this for fairness though, I have not played many Taylors, they seem to be quite popular and highly recommended...
Old 07-24-03, 08:25 AM
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Originally posted by Johnny Zhivago
Which brings up one quality that any of the Ovations or other non-wood guitars are bound to have... Over time, they will not "age" the way a nice acoustic will. I too have owned an Ovation, one of the slimline Elites I think it was (mainly for running scales and solos on - I went through my Al Di Meola phase) and it was fine for that but had no versatility at all... It also felt very foreign, for lack of a better term, after spending more time with some nice acoustics... Sold it for what I payed for it (at a guitar show, good discount) and have had no regrets.

Which bring me back to the original posts about just dropping a thinline pickup into a nice acoustic if you really want amplification sans a mic.

schizopak > As I said above, I've played many and my Alvarez-Yairi just gets better with each passing day. Martins do as well, but I've never liked the necks. I will add this for fairness though, I have not played many Taylors, they seem to be quite popular and highly recommended...
Yeah discovering the aging process (or lack thereof or even warping if not taken care of) in guitars is one of the great joys/disappointments in a musicians life depending on how carefully the guitar was initially chosen. Taylors and Guilds both play great and are a solid guitar with nice tones.

Johnny Zhivago, how much did you pay for your Alvarez-Yairi and where did you get it? As you know Alvarez has limited distribution and though I've managed to hunt down a few guitar stores that carry Alvarez acoustics, I don't remember seeing the Yairi line.
Old 07-24-03, 11:09 AM
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Originally posted by schizopak
Johnny Zhivago, how much did you pay for your Alvarez-Yairi and where did you get it? As you know Alvarez has limited distribution and though I've managed to hunt down a few guitar stores that carry Alvarez acoustics, I don't remember seeing the Yairi line.
It's been about 8 or 9 years so my memory is shot to hell when it comes to the specifics... But, I seem to remember that I caught a good deal on it at a shop in Indianapolis... Was a store out in the burbs, north side of town. I'll check to see if I still have the price tag and dealer info in the case... IIRC I paid $800 for it, which was $400 below list...

Anyhoo... Solid cedar top and black jacaranda back and sides which is what really caught my attention... It's a beautiful wood and you don't see it that often. Yairi uses it mainly for their nylon string classical guitars so it was an interesting surprise to see it used on a steel string. I'll see if I can dig up a pic on the web and locate the dealer. Unfortunately, I have no digi-cam or I'd post a pic...

Last edited by Johnny Zhivago; 07-24-03 at 11:18 AM.
Old 07-24-03, 11:28 AM
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Musicians Friend doesnt sell Alvarez or Taylor

If they dont carry them, Im sure my local music stores dont either. Espeailly since the music stores carry ***** here!
Old 07-24-03, 03:26 PM
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Originally posted by Ravenous
Musicians Friend doesnt sell Alvarez or Taylor

If they dont carry them, Im sure my local music stores dont either. Espeailly since the music stores carry ***** here!
If you're willing to buy off Musicians Friend, ebay isn't a bad place to get guitars. They have plenty of Alvarez and Taylor guitars.
Old 07-24-03, 05:14 PM
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Oh yea, Ebay has em. But If I want to test the guitars, i may not be able to as the stores here just carry what Musicians Friend Carries
Old 07-24-03, 06:16 PM
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I got an Epiphone PR-5E about a year ago, and I've been quite happy with it. It wasn't the best sounding guitar in the store, but I felt it was, by far, the best sounding acoustic-electric for $350 that I tried.

I tried a couple Ovations (without plugging them in), and I thought the sound wasn't very full. Maybe they sound better out of an amp, but I wanted a nice rich acoustic sound without HAVING to plug it in, and I felt like I got that with the Epiphone.
Old 07-27-03, 06:32 PM
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Originally posted by Johnny Zhivago
It's been about 8 or 9 years so my memory is shot to hell when it comes to the specifics... But, I seem to remember that I caught a good deal on it at a shop in Indianapolis... Was a store out in the burbs, north side of town. I'll check to see if I still have the price tag and dealer info in the case... IIRC I paid $800 for it, which was $400 below list...

Anyhoo... Solid cedar top and black jacaranda back and sides which is what really caught my attention... It's a beautiful wood and you don't see it that often. Yairi uses it mainly for their nylon string classical guitars so it was an interesting surprise to see it used on a steel string. I'll see if I can dig up a pic on the web and locate the dealer. Unfortunately, I have no digi-cam or I'd post a pic...
damn you! i was all set up to buy an electric guitar, but you planted the acoustic bug in my head! i just won an Alvarez Yairi guitar off of ebay. I wouldn't of gotten it but I was able to win it for $400 plus shipping and it was in near-mint condition. New, this same guitar went from $700-over a grand. I'm very happy and will be sure to post my experience with it when I get it. I'm getting my Alvarez sooner than expected and though I probably can't afford it, I'm a happy camper right now.
Old 07-28-03, 01:17 PM
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Congrats man!

Ravenous - You're in San Antonio and every store in your area carries the exact same products as Musician's Friend? Dude, that sucks. You've checked out all the major stores in your city? Surely there's a guitar shop, not an all in one music store, somewhere in or around San Antonio. ? If you must have something from MF, I would suggest the Takamine's or Ky-Fi said, an Epiphone. But hey, if you really want the Martin, go for it... I just think you should be able to actually hear it first.

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Old 07-28-03, 01:42 PM
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Another vote for Taylor. I have two and they are wonderful sounding guitars. Very rich, full sound and built very well but they are pricey so if you can afford it go with that.
Old 07-30-03, 10:50 AM
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Well I found a few Taylors! I was a music store FAR away from where I live (the opposite of town and SA is a huge city) and they sold these guitars. They were TOO expensive though. Id never spend over $800 on a guitar unless I was a true professional. Besides, I dont think the Taylors sounded too good. I wasnt blown away or anything. However, I did play a Takimine, Ibanez, Washburn, Fender, and Yamaha (for the hell of it) and actually prefered the Ibanez above all of those.
Old 08-11-03, 11:33 PM
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Ok, my new Alvarez Yairi finally got back from the shop along with my Takamine. I had the action and neck adjusted on both and they were both strung with Elixirs. Man that's a great sounding guitar now! Easily one of the best sounding guitars I've ever played and its now mine, ALL MINE!
Old 08-12-03, 10:40 AM
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Originally posted by schizopak
Ok, my new Alvarez Yairi finally got back from the shop along with my Takamine. I had the action and neck adjusted on both and they were both strung with Elixirs. Man that's a great sounding guitar now! Easily one of the best sounding guitars I've ever played and its now mine, ALL MINE!


Yairi makes a nice guitar eh? Welcome to the cult.

Ravenous - Any luck yet? Did you go with an Ibanez?

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