April 10th, 2012, 06:18 AM
I received my new Musician's Friend catalog the other day and noticed that they had these Rogue mandolins for 50 bucks. While I have no experience on the mandolin, I do have $50.
Has anybody had any experience with these? Are they a waste of money even at that low price?
April 10th, 2012, 06:24 AM
My friend has one, it's worth the fifty bucks.
April 10th, 2012, 06:27 AM
Get a new set of strings, the stock ones are horrid. I had one of them but my fingers are just too big.
April 10th, 2012, 06:43 AM
I've had one for quite a few years. Its alright. Sounds pretty OK. Definitely worth 50.00. You can spend more and get more. But I dont think you can spend less and get more.
If you're interested in mandolin, i say get it.
I ultimately decided mandolin wasnt my thing. But I still play it a bit.
April 10th, 2012, 06:46 AM
Just like a guitar, having the thing set up properly will make a world of difference.
April 10th, 2012, 11:56 AM
yeah, I don't know. I got one when they were $30, just to leave around the office, but I never play the thing -- doesn't play well or sound good. I have a little Mid-Missouri MM-8 that blows the doors off of it, and it was under $200. And made in the US by actual people out of solid wood.
April 10th, 2012, 12:11 PM
I got one in a starter kit with one of their ukeleles. Not a bad Mandi to start with like I did. I would say if you are serious about mandolin, then go for something that is a bit better quality.
April 10th, 2012, 12:25 PM
I don't like starting people out on awful instruments, so no, I would not recommend.
April 10th, 2012, 12:28 PM
I have the mandolin from Rondo Music. I believe it was about the same price. Plays pretty well. Nothing compared to a high-end mandolin, but great for learning. Plays well and sounds decent enough.
April 10th, 2012, 12:31 PM
I picked one up to learn on and never really bonded with it. If you're serious about learning I would recommend something higher end, but if you just want a fun novelty to blow 50 bucks on then go for it. Just don't expect too much from it.
April 10th, 2012, 01:59 PM
don't waste your money....if you want a good mandolin that will stay in tune and has some resale value save a little more money and buy something in the 2 to 300 dollar mark like a Fender FM-53s A style or similar....$50 will buy you a toy
check C/L for used Mandos ,they come up all the time where I'm at for half the price of new....
April 10th, 2012, 02:08 PM
Haven't really got around to playing it. I thought just something to learn the fingerings on is worth $50......don't really care what it sounds like.......
April 10th, 2012, 02:24 PM
I've had one for several years. I would never have bought it myself, but my lovely wife surprised me with it as a present. I have used it and used it. I learned on it. I have gigged on it, and I still use it. Its very much worth the $50, and I think I'd go so far as to say if it were $100 it would still be worth it. The other guitarist in my band also has one. He plays it at all of our gigs. He ultimately put new tuners on it, and a pickup, but it sounds pretty good. It is not going to be the quality of a more expensive one, but if you're looking to learn at a minimal investment....I'd go for it.
April 10th, 2012, 03:04 PM
I have one of the cheapo Rogues that was heavily modified by my father...he replaced the pickguard with a nicely finished wooden one, replaced the nut with bone and decreased the string spacing, and filed down the frets to even them out. All told I think it made for a modest improvement, but since he gave it to me for free I didn't complain. It is fun to chunk around on and learn a few things. Is it going to ever be a Gibson no matter what you do to it? Nope. But for 50 bucks I'd say it would be a fun diversion if that's all you're after.
April 10th, 2012, 04:05 PM
Yeah. I've put the neck back in one. JB weld seemed to be work fine.
April 10th, 2012, 04:15 PM
I had one, they're playable.
April 10th, 2012, 04:20 PM
Well, I bought a cheapy like that to see if I liked the mando and I did.
I then went down to GC and played every mando under $1000, they all sounded pretty much the same until I got to the breedlove but that was $995. The best $ for me was the Ovation mando. Less than $1000. plays well, sounds good and you can plug it in . . .
Best of luck
April 10th, 2012, 05:36 PM
I read the frets wear out quickly on those Rogue mandos. One of the guys I play with who plays mandolin told me not to buy a stone cheap mando to start-spend at least $200-300 for something that has some quality going on, and get it set up immediately. He has an electric Godin mando he likes that cost him over $700.
I wouldn't waste your $50. Look for a used one of better quality.
April 10th, 2012, 06:15 PM
I have one, it's fine for messing around and learning. And was signed by David Grisman!
April 11th, 2012, 10:43 AM
Here's a shot of an F Style mando that Hondo made some years ago and sold for only $149 which was a helluva deal. I didn't care what it sounded like acoustically as I was going to electrify it to play in a band. It did OK for about a month until it got knocked off of it's stand by a trumpet player and the neck became bowed. I tried to straighten it and after about a turn and a half it started to straighten and then the truss rod broke. It wound up on the wall in my music room as a clock. That was a mistake too as I put a clock mechanism in it that "ticked" not realizing that the mandolin would "amplify" the ticking. It doesn't even tell time now, but it's nice to look at.............JH in VA.
April 11th, 2012, 04:19 PM
I actually got their mandolin and an acoustic guitar for 80 bucks. I figured why not pay an extra 30 for an acoustic guitar?
Neither will be mistaken for Martins, but they play OK after a little work. The mando's nut was too tall, but after filing the bottom a bit, and spending a while sliding the bridge around and lowering it, I have a functional, playable mandolin. I removed the pickguard BTW; I think it looks better and it's definitely a little louder. Yes the strings were crap; replace them. All in all it's worth the pittance they're charging. If I get any good at it I'll buy a better one.
The guitar is OK too, for the money. Finish is pretty rough, fret ends were sharp, action was high. After an easy truss rod adjustment and some rough filing on the ends, it is playable. The neck 'binding' was rough and needed some smoothing with steel wool. Intonation is decent at this point and it's a perfect guitar to take camping and the like. Soundwise it's nothing spectacular, but no worse than other budget guitars that cost several times as much.
So for 80 bucks (free shipping) I got a mandolin and an acoustic guitar. They look nice and I use them. I could see either selling for 100 bucks or so in stores. I'd do it again in a heartbeat.
EDIT: I should add that the guitar holds tune very well (and the factory strings were great on the guitar, though I decided on a lighter gauge). And the rudimentary setups I performed on these instruments were my first. Something about instruments this cheap just made me feel bold enough to mess with them, and it turned out to be not that difficult. So they were useful as learning tools that way as well.
April 12th, 2012, 10:03 PM
I bought myself one of the Rogues for christmas 2011, Amazon had them for $40.00, figured I could put a pup on it if it sounded really bad. Surprisingly, after I lowered the action and tuned it, the thing sounded decent and played fairly well. Changed the strings, and it sounded even better.
I realize I probably was rather lucky, but for a secondary instrument I can't complain. You'd probably need to spend a lot more money to see much improvement.