What You Should Know About Acoustic Guitars
Acoustic guitars are one of the most popular instruments on the market today, but how do they differ? How do you determine which one is right for you?
First of all, you need to realize two important things…
2. Less expensive models will usually have a laminated top.
The problem with having a laminated top is that it will be more prone to cracking or splitting under certain conditions than a solid top would be.
How well a guitar is made will also affect how good it sounds and plays. Therefore, before buying a new guitar, you should first establish your own priorities. Start by answering this simple question…
What is more important to you, the quality or the price?
Most of us would probably agree that both of these things are important, but when it comes to making the final decision, the pocketbook often wins. This is especially true if you are a beginner who is out looking to buy your very first guitar. Inexperience, and not knowing whether you will stick with your new found hobby can obviously have an impact on the decision making process, as it should.
The good news is, you shouldn’t have any trouble finding a decent brand-name with a solid-top for under $500. =)
For example, the Yamaha FG800 Folk Acoustic Guitar provides both quality and price. It has a solid spruce top with a rosewood fingerboard and generally sells for around $200.
The Yamaha FG800 Features:
– Acoustic guitar in dreadnought body shape
– Solid spruce top
– Nato/okume back and sides
– Tortoise pattern pick-guard
– Stylish black binding
– Comfortable nato neck
– Smooth rosewood fingerboard
– 20 frets with comfortable action
– Scale length of 25.5″
– Die-cast chrome tuners
– Secure rosewood bridge
– Black ABS bridge pins with white dots
The Yamaha FG800 is perfect for either finger-picking or flat-picking. It can project a big sound when you want it and generate a nice sustain as well. There is a tortoise shell pick-guard which looks good against the natural wood finish. And as I said before, it has a solid sitka spruce top, whereas other inexpensive guitars will often have a laminated top. This is a real bonus in my opinion.
Now if you have been playing for a long time and have a little more money to spend then you might be more interested in quality brand name acoustic guitars such as Gibson, Martin, Guild and Taylor.
The Martin D28, for instance, is a classic dreadnought and a long time favorite among many bluegrass and finger-style guitarists.
The MRTD28 Features:
– Classic Martin dreadnought shape
– Gorgeous rosewood back (two piece) and sides
– Solid spruce top
– Elegant rosette and white binding
– Traditional Martin bracing style for excellent focus of sound
– Handcrafted by Martin master luthiers in Nazareth, Pennsylvania
– Included hardshell case
– Martin limited lifetime warranty
Many beginners make the mistake of buying a really cheap guitar thinking that they are getting a deal. Unfortunately, they end up with something that’s very difficult to play and can’t be tuned. I’ve seen this happen over and over again.
Tip: Always be sure to ask the seller if there is a customer satisfaction money-back guarantee.
A money-back guarantee will give you time to try out the guitar after your order is delivered. Then, if you are not completely satisfied you can simply return it and receive a full refund.
Please take my advice and don’t waste your time and money on a bargain basement instrument! Believe me, you will actually be saving money in the long run if you buy a better quality guitar to begin with.
However, even if you’ve found a decent acoustic guitar, there is still the possibility that it will need a little tweaking. This will be especially true if the instrument was subjected to changes in temperature during the shipping process. Not every guitar needs to be setup, but even many brand new guitars sound and play better after they have been set-up correctly.
Most companies set up their guitars to be comfortable for the average player, but that may not suit your particular playing style. Visit your local music store to see if they have a professional luthier who can set it up for you if you are interested in doing this.
Be sure to check your warranty agreement before you have your guitar set-up. You’ll want to know if there are any restrictions about doing this (such as using a qualified luthier) first. Then if there are any problems found with the guitar you can simply return it.
In conclusion, I’d say the Yamaha Folk Acoustic is a great entry level guitar. The nice appearance , good tone and low price make it even more appealing. On top of that, the guitar comes with a limited lifetime manufacturer’s warranty. So, if you’ve been looking for a decent guitar at an affordable price, this acoustic is a good choice.