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3 of 3 found the following review helpful:
Beautiful guitar with a great sound Jul 08, 2012
By A. Rose
"Miss Rose Rose"
First, a disclaimer: There are so many different guitars on the market, and so many different musicians with different preferences, that no guitar review can be perfectly comprehensive. So instead of trying to examine this guitar from every angle, I'm simply going to relate my experience with it. And I can't tell you how very pleased I am with this guitar.
Some of the standout points:
* The craftsmanship. From the minute you pick this guitar up, you can feel how well-made it is; invisible seams, beautiful lacquerwork, solid body binding. And the attention to detail is just wonderful; I've never had a string bind while tuning, the pegs both come out easily and stay in when you put on new strings, and the tuning machines are smooth and precise. Takamine's Japanese-made guitars are very well thought-of, and this one absolutely lives up to their reputation.
* The size. This is a very subjective area, of course, but I love the size of this guitar - it's small enough to not feel humongous on my lap while still large enough to have a nice rich sound. If there's one quibble it's the thickness of the neck; I have longish fingers and can hold it fine, but my shorter-fingered husband occasionally has trouble reaching some frets.
* The aesthetic appeal. The guitar's looks were what prompted me to pick it up in the first place; the koa wood is beautifully figured, and the inlay work (abalone around the sound hole, small snowflake-shaped fret markers) is beyond reproach. I also love the subtler design cues that make the whole thing feel more coherent as a work of art - the way the bridge tapers to a point in the same way as the headstock, for instance, or the way the ivory-colored plastic is just the right shade to set off the warm brown of the koa wood.
But any guitar, no matter how well made, is going to be judged ultimately on its voice. And given that the top, back and sides are all made of koa wood, this guitar has some interesting acoustic properties.
Something many folks don't realize about koa wood is that its sound changes with use. When a koa guitar first comes out of the woodworking shop, it has a very bright tone, similar to maple; high in the trebles but so-so in the midrange and without a whole lot of bass. As it's played, however, and the wood vibrates, the sound opens up and becomes richer and fuller. I've heard people claim that after years of constant play their koa guitars rivaled rosewood for bass; while mine's nowhere near to that point yet, it was played daily by the owner of the music shop where I bought it, and it's got a far more balanced midrange and bass than I expected when I first picked it up. I'd say it's similar to my mahogany Ibanez in terms of sound, except that it has this wonderful warmth and sustain that the Ibanez just can't match (not that that's really surprising; they're two different guitars from completely different price points).
Obviously, a musician's choice of instrument is a very personal and subjective thing, so I would never recommend buying a guitar without playing it first and getting an idea of its sound and how it fits in your hands and lap. But if you want a smaller guitar with a wonderfully unique voice, I highly recommend trying out this model; I'd say it's absolutely on par with the Gibsons I was originally eyeing in terms of craftsmanship, and significantly less expensive, to boot.
1 of 1 found the following review helpful:
I will have this guitar till I die. Nov 28, 2012
By Tyler Lewis
After playing the guitar for about a year, I decided that I wanted to get serious. Getting serious with any musical instrument means shelling out for a nice one that you will actually enjoy playing. So, I went to Guitar center the day after Thanksgiving (they were having a 20% off one item sale) and promised myself that I would play every guitar in the showroom and walk out with my favorite, regardless of cost (ok...like anything below $4000).
I played every guitar in that room, from the cheap Fenders to the stupid-expensive Gibsons and Martins, and this is the guitar I walked out with. Not only was it the first guitar to catch my EYE, it was also the guitar that caught my EARS. The sound is so beautiful and bright and sweet. The case that comes with it is awesome, too, which is an added bonus.
I have had this guitar for 6 years now, and I have NEVER regretted buying it. To this day, I will go to a guitar center and play a few of the high-end guitars and then pick one of these up, and it still sounds better to me than any guitar in the room. I get countless complements on its good looks and sound. I will have this guitar until I die, or until it goes out of use...at which point I will buy another one.
If you like fingerpicking and softer-style strumming, this is the guitar for you. Probably not the best for heavy hitters. I don't play it amped a lot, but when I do it sounds a bit tinny. Probably because I don't know what I'm doing with the amp.
Best Koa Guitar Sep 21, 2012
By Brian Mendenhall
This is not going to be a "wordy" review. You can find many of those somewhere else. I have had this guitar for over 3 months and LOVE it. I have owned koa Taylors, Epiphone acoustics and others. This is by far the best sounding acoustic I have ever owned or played.
The plug in electronics are fantastic as played through my Fender Acoustasonic Jr. Assuming you are using an acoustic cable, all I can say is WOW.
It is a beautiful guitar and begs to be played. I am very critical of my instruments, so this what I have to say is not to be taken lightly.