Acoustic guitar recommendations


I’m looking for a new acoustic guitar. This is my current one - a Takamine EAN10C. I bought it second hand about 12 years ago and it’s seen better days. (My guitar has a cracked front panel and loads of scratch marks). The newer Takamines aren’t up to much comparatively.


I’d like something full-bodied, with a pick-up, budget of c. £500-£750. Happy to buy second-hand again.


Well @xylo and @bamnan to the thread I guess. Bammers’ guitar sounds great on Keep Knocking.


thanks Theo!

I’m using a Cordoba GK Studio at the moment which is a flamenco guitar I believe but it has a great balanced tone and is really easy to play (almost never touch my much more expensive acoustic now unfortunately). Nice natural sound plugged in to with a decent mic blend option, doesn’t sound cheap and thin like a lot of DI stuff (though I’ve been mixing it with a condensor mic and panning seperately for my recordings.

Think it’s around £600 most places. Seems really nice for a mid priced guitar but probably not what you’re looking for


hey big man

well first: Takamine are really, really hard to argue with at that price point. They tend to have a better build, pickup and out-the-box setup than most at that level. Their current range is a BIT shiny looking is the only thing.

Going for one of the top tier brands is a bad idea at that price - you’ll be payin for the name alone and end up with something not as good as the mid levels

so check out godin (and their ‘underling’ brands) norman, seagull and S&P. Check out Ibanez too, would you believe? I swear by mine, it was so good i bought a second one for when i was gigging. Again: setup and build far better than most. Fender actually worth a shout at the upper end of your budget too


You left out Art and Lutherie! From the same factory as S&P I believe.

'Cos I’m a shortarse I’ve got one of their Folk Cedar ones. Very full tone for a slightly smaller guitar. Whilst I never EVER DI it it really doesn’t sound too bad live plugged in. Sounds great picked and strummed. I didn’t find a guitar for £500 which suited me better at the time.

Not as big of a fan of Takamines. Tend to find they’re set up beautifully and great to play but definitely not as good for fingerstyle etc. Strumming they’re fine but find that for folk they sound a bit plain. You want a bit more earthy tones in there - Takamines always sound to my ears a bit too… polished? It’s all subjective at the end of the day.


damn! you’re right i did and they’re great too


Yeah and for £100-£200 cheaper than an S&P. Although I’m not gonna lie I did also factor looks in and I think my one looks lush:


the stained colours are def a marmite thing. i liked the reds and browns and not the blues, which i remember were the three core colours when they first came out. fucking hell i feel old


Yeah whatever floats your boat ain’t it.

Not sure why that photo’s not showing properly. Edited the size of the fucking thing twice now.


I’ve never struggled with getting a good tone from a Takamine - maybe they sound a bit brighter than you’d like but I tend to keep the EQ quite muted when plugged in.

I’m just looking at those Art and Lutherie guitars online now. They look gorgeous! I’m leaning towards a dreadnought as I never really use the cutaway.

I went into a guitar shop at lunchtime and was talked into trying out a Faith guitar. TBH I wasn’t convinced.


Yeah they’re nice guitars. Although as always - just play a load first and see what sounds best. Only complaint about my A&L is the actions a bit high. I’ve lowered it a bit by sanding the bridge myself. Although I’m used to it 'cos I play with heavy 13-56 medium acoustic strings so my hands can press anything down now.



Stick to electric 11s with a wound G-String mate :smiley:


Yeah not gonna lie when I saw your video of you restringing your acoustic with electric strings I… I did feel a little bit sick. Enjoy your thin, wispy tone at Reading I guess.


Me too my friend


The thing is, it sounds absolutely fine. And it’s a common thing.

Part of it is that I used to use a Woody pickup in my 12-string as it was pure acoustic. Now as you know, bronze-wound acoustic strings are rubbish with standard pickups because they don’t generate the right field on them. Rare Earth pickups work better with them but cost a ridiculous amount. So you need to use actual steel strings on your steel string guitar.

Interestingly I’ve noticed some electro-acoustic guitars come with standard pickups embedded before the soundhole and obviously they sound like ass when you use bronze strings, the top two strings coming out far too strong.


I don’t like it but each to their own!

I guess you’re talking about using pick-ups. Most of the time with acoustics I’m thinking mic’d or not at all. Obviously some gigs you can’t do that but with home recording etc. there’s no reason not to. Shoving an SM58 in front of it > any pick-up/string combo.


Home recording I always did both if I could spare the tracks, to be honest, although I tended to use condenser mics rather than 58s for the flatter response. I did once record a mate doing solely acoustic so I used three mics - the 58, the condenser and my cheap bass drum mic, but there wasn’t a wild amount of variation in the end. Still, allowed for quite a lot of space in the recording, which was nice.

Live on stage mics are okay but feedback was always a menace as was moving about. I was always nervous enough that I didn’t want to have a performance marred by trying to stick in a particular position, etc, so I always wanted to use DI if possible. Most of those bridge pickups tend to come out pretty good through a DI box with a bit of careful mixing.

The thing with bronze strings is they sound amazing when you first put them on but they dulled so quickly. Electric strings have less initial punch but will last far longer with a consistent tone, as well as obviously being a lot easier to fret due to the automatic lighter action. I can’t develop finger callouses so that matters to me also.


Seeings as this has turned into string talk, what are people’s favourites? I’m new to acoustic, and not keen on the zingy sound of bronze so tried some d’daddario silk and steel, feel really nice and sound softer. Tempted to try some gypsy jazz strings next


'sfair enough! I learnt on a cheap Yamaha with a fucker of an action and then when I bought my own guitar the guy in the shop recommended medium gauge strings for the fullest sound so… stuck with them. Just assumed playing acoustic was always that hard/painful in the beginning but got used to it!


I just use the D’Addario Phosphor Bronze 3 packs. Medium. Never anything else. Not really delved into the world of strings tbh.