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127 of 128 found the following review helpful:
Great guitar - incredible value Jan 26, 2009
I bought a Seagull in 1995, with my first paycheck after graduating from college, at a small guitar store in Petaluma. It might be the best $400 I've ever spent.
Over the years I've become a much better guitar player, but I haven't outgrown this instrument, and I doubt I ever will. It is a fantastic guitar that plays beautifully and sounds better every year. It's very easy to play, very reliable (haven't needed to adjust the truss once) and did I mention it sounds great?
It's beautiful, too, with a wonderful light finish. Most guitars in this price range are cheaply made in asia and heavily lacquered. Not this baby!
If something ever happened to it I'd skip right past the Taylors and Martins and buy another one of these without a second thought. I brought it to a party recently, and met someone who asked to borrow it. I let him, and he strummed it for a few minutes. Turns out he's one of those guys who owns half a dozen guitars, and when he handed it back to me he said, "Don't ever sell this guitar, unless it's to me."
The only guitar I've ever played where I felt like I was clearly handling a better guitar was a Paul Reed Smith hollowbody which runs for over three grand.
You could spend a lot more money and not get an instrument this nice. For $400, it's hard to imagine that you'll do better.
61 of 61 found the following review helpful:
Great Guitar, Excellent Value! Sep 29, 2009
By Patti Cake
After 42 years of playing unsatisfying guitars, I did some research and spent a lot of time at all the local Guitar Centers, Sam Ash stores and a number of indie stores like McCabes in Santa Monica. I played everything I could get my hands on that had at least a solid top.
So when my husband wanted to get me a guitar for my birthday, I chose the Seagull Original S6 because it sounds great, feels good and plays so very well. The sound actually stands up pretty well even when played right after all-solid more expensive guitars. After a setup and putting on some extra light strings, it's hard to believe it has laminate back and sides - my S6 sings! And it sounds great finger picking or strummed.
Details - the nut is 1.8 inches, which is very nice for finger picking. This is a short scale guitar but not a 3/4 size, and the body hits at the 14th fret. The top is solid cedar, sides and back are laminated wild cherry. Build quality of every one I've seen (and I've seen a lot of them) is very good, and the semi-gloss finish looks and feels smooth. It's got well-finished frets and fretboard and a bright sound with lots of sustain - if you're like me and didn't need that much brightness, try phosphor bronze strings.
If you're a beginning to intermediate player or are looking for a second guitar, I cannot recommend the Seagull Original S6 enough!
55 of 60 found the following review helpful:
A guitar I can grow with. Sep 25, 2009
By David W. Groat
I'm a guitar newbie (been playing 3 months) and before starting I did some on-line research on acoustic guitars to determine what would be the best beginner guitar. Every list I found rated this one in the top five, even though it was more than twice the price of all the rest of them. Convinced, I found a used one on Craigslist for $200.
Since it was my first guitar I had nothing to compare it to, but my first impression was good. It seemed well built, reasonably attractive and had good sound. A little bulky, but I got used to it. I was happy.
Then I took an adult guitar course at my local community college and saw what the other students were bringing in. Ibanez's, Yamahas, Epiphones, Fenders, even a Toys-R-Us Hannah Montana (???). It was then I realized how much of a superior instrument the Seagull is! Every one of them looked and felt like cheap crap compared to mine. Wavy sound boards, thick glossy finish, crude bracing, ill-fitting inlays, etc. One guy had a fancy six-hundred dollar Ibanez electric-acoustic cutaway in stunning flame maple finish and he allowed me to play it for a bit. It sounded horrible, like stretching fishing line over a tin can!
So in conclusion: you get what you pay for. And in the case of the Seagull, you get a quite a bit more of what really counts. It's a no-frills guitar with very little thought given to unnecessary adornments. It's designed to be played, not displayed on a wall. If you're serious about guitaring, stop reading this and go get one.
16 of 16 found the following review helpful:
Best value at this price point or even three times as much Apr 18, 2010
I bought this guitar in 2005. It sounds and looks wonderful and manages to stay that way. I think this is a good guitar and when you think that something that might sound better would cost three to four times as much it is a great guitar for the value.
This model has the cedar top. I love that sound vs the more typical spruce top on flattop guitars. It is a bit more mellow and has a hint of a classical guitar tone because of that. If you prefer the bright concert sound of a Martin then you'll not want this cedar top.
Yes this guitar has an oiled finish. This allows the soundboard to really sing unimpeded. It also allows you to knock the heck out of it. Funny thing is that after five years there isn't much damage just a little arm wear. I think you'll like this guitar enough to not knock it around.
The neck feels silky smooth. The frets are well placed and don't stab you by hanging over the neck a little which is what you'll get in other guitars in this price range. Paying to get the frets filed down is an additional expense on those competitors so beware when comparing.
This doesn't come with a case so I bought a hard shell by the brand name "Canadian". Great case.
When I bought it it really didn't need an adjustment but I took it to a local shop to make it perfect for me. I've also taken it in every other year for setting the action - checking and tweaking the neck - and getting the frets polished. I also use a humidifier in its case during the winter months in Chicago. Performing these tasks will prolong the life of your Seagull and your enjoyment of it.
Update: 10/13/2012 update of my 2010 review. This guitar sounds even BETTER. I went to a handful of guitar stores looking for another acoustic "just for fun" and I had a few bucks burning a hole in my pocket. To my surprise all the guitars three times its price sounded vastly inferior. You see I learned that as you play a good wood guitar that over time it will "open up" and keep sounding better. Yet another reason to keep it humidified and taken care of. It will increase in value (to you at least).
16 of 17 found the following review helpful:
An S6 was my first acoustic guitar, and I'm still playing it after 7 years Jul 25, 2012
By Brett Llewellyn
While I have the S6 Slim, the only difference between the two guitars is the neck width. On the slim it is 1.72" while on the original, it is 1.80". I've played both and they sound and essentially look the same, so I wanted to post my review from the slim onto here as well. Again the only difference is neck width. If you have smaller hands check out the Slim model.
I did not buy this guitar from Amazon, but from a local guitar shop. I was looking for a "budget" guitar in the <500$ price range and played every guitar the shop had over the course of 3 days. The Seagull S6 Slim (and S6, for that matter) stood out without any comparison.
As suggested in the title, I have been playing this guitar for 7 years (I finally bought an "intermediate" guitar just a month ago). I have never had guitar lessons, and I think that truly demonstrates how beautiful this guitar is and sounds. It held my interest through all of the self teaching and I always came back to it. I only started thinking about getting a new guitar a few months ago, and it was simply because I needed something with a brighter sound. I have never gotten sick of this guitar and play it daily, even with my new guitar.
First things first, though. If you haven't actually heard the guitar in person or at least youtube videos, do that before looking at reviews. This holds true with any guitar, or instrument really. Everyone perceives sounds differently and the perfect tone quality for me may not be the same as for you. If you have and you're looking for reason to buy the guitar, keep reading.
Second, guitars of the same model do not all sound the same. From personal experience, Seagull guitars do not have the same quality control as, let's say, a Taylor. But you're also paying a third of the price. I have never played a bad Seagull, but a few of the same model have sounded better than others. Because of this, I highly encourage you to buy a guitar that you've been able to play first.
Those items being said, I cannot recommend this guitar enough:
TONE - the first thing that comes to my mind with an acoustic guitar is its tone. The S6 provides a very dark, full sound. I think it's best used for folk music. I play it alongside Taylors and Martins, and, while these guitars are of course "better" (and more $$$), none of them have the same distinct tone of a Seagull. You get very rich, full sounds out of this that blend well with vocals and other guitars. I have yet to hear a guitar in the <$750 price range match this tone.
Also, I don't remember the exact science behind it, but the wood in this guitar starts sounding better and more full the longer you play the guitar. If you're interested, definitely look it up on google.
PLAY-ABILITY - tone doesn't do much good if you can't play the guitar very easily. That's the next spot where the S6 series shines. I have smaller hands and opted on the 1.72" nut width of the Slim (vs. the 1.80" standard) and it made a huge difference for me. I was able to play Barre chords for the first time ever. It holds up well to more challenging songs and tunings as well. I've recorded a video of myself playing the instrumental piece Ocean by John Butler if you're interested in hearing/seeing how it holds up to more demanding pieces (Please don't discredit this review for what may appear as self-advertising; I just want to offer a video showing both the tone and playability of this guitar). It's easily searchable on youtube with my name and the piece name, as are many other videos from different users of this guitar. Again though, don't take my word for it, play it at a guitar store personally.
In conjunction with tone, the mentioned John Butler piece requires the guitar to be tuned down to open C. A lot of guitars cannot handle this very well due to the large variance in tension throughout the guitar, but the Seagull S6 Series has no problem.
LOOKS - Let's be honest, it's much more fun to pick up and practice/play a guitar that looks great. While this isn't in my top 10 by any means, it still is a natural looking guitar with no gimmicks. While I was a bit turned off at first, it has definitely grown on me.
CRAFTSMANSHIP - In 7 years I've never had to take this guitar to a shop to get repaired. 5 of those years the guitar was in horrible conditions: never in a case, no humidifier, etc. I've had no problems with any parts of the guitar. The pegs are still original, the bridge has never been adjusted, etc. This guitar comes ready to play for years.
Some recommendations -
STRINGS- the Godin (company that makes Seagull products) strings are great and dirt cheap, however their sound does not last for very long. This isn't a huge problem with beginning guitarists/musicians, but once you've played for a year or so you notice old strings and their poor tone immediately. Elixir light phosphor bronze strings sound absolutely fantastic with this guitar. They're slightly more expensive but truly last for about 4-6 months before needing to replace them. The guitar keeps its dark tone with them and their slick coating makes it even easier to play.
I also had the problem of the strings "schreeching" when trying to tune the guitar with the Godin strings, where the strings would jump past the desired pitch. The Elixir strings have absolutely no such problem.
Lastly, make sure you use light strings. Medium can also work but anything lighter or heavier does not match this guitar well.
STRAP - the guitar doesn't have second peg for a strap. You can opt to add one in for pretty cheap at any guitar store, but I personally don't like the idea of drilling holes into my guitar. I bought a Planet Waves Quick Release strap connector that works as a replacement for about 5 dollars. If you like standing when you play (and who doesn't at some point??), definitely check it out.
Finally, what level of a musician are you? If you're a beginner but have your heart set on learning guitar, skip the hassle and trouble of buying a cheap guitar, even if it has good reviews. Go straight here. The Seagull will always hold your interest and is very easy to play. If you're really serious about guitar, you'll upgrade eventually, so you might as well save 150 dollars from not buying a cheaply made guitar.
If you're an intermediate who worked his/her way up from a cheap guitar, this is a good next place to be. However, if your first guitar was in this price range (or more), consider Seagull's other products. They offer excellent mid-range (in both value and skill level) guitars.
If you're an expert, this guitar won't compare to your Taylors/Martins/etc., but then again, it's not trying to. And you can tell. It's really in a league of its own and Seagull knows what they're doing. This guitar would still add a nice touch to your collection.
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