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Cheap laminate acoustic

Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by Mind Flayer, Jan 19, 2014.

  1. Mind Flayer

    Mind Flayer Tele-Meister

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    I have a nice solid top acoustic guitar that I am happy with. But my house is prone to dry air and temp changes, so I have to keep it in the case most of the time with one of those green sponge things to keep it from warping.

    I am looking for a cheap acoustic that I can just leave out even when the AC or heater is going full force without worrying about it warping; something I don't have to baby. Am I correct that a laminate top guitar solves that issue?

    I'm also looking for something that sounds decent. It doesn't have to be stellar. Just something I can pick up to write some tunes on without having to walk upstairs, get the guitar out of my case, etc. Yes, I know, I'm lazy. But the fact is if a guitar is sitting out in my main living area, it is more likely to get played.

    Anybody have any suggestions? I'm looking for something $300 or less.
     
  2. SamClemons

    SamClemons Poster Extraordinaire

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    2 Suggestions.

    Ovations are rock steady, play good, sound good, and can be picked up used for a fraction of what they were new.

    I forget the model number, Martin has some graphite body with laminate neck guitars. Also can often be picked up for a low price, very stable. I was real impressed with one of these that went through my hands.

    Most guitars are not as sensitive as a lot of people seem to imply. I live here in TN where the heat and humidity are awful. Country music heaven where people have drug old Gibsons and Martins around forever with little ill effect from temps.
     
  3. dsutton24

    dsutton24 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    My Taylor 110 is pretty stable, I don't worry about it. I also love Ovations, but they're not always everyone's idea of a 'real' guitar. :D

    Or, you could just scrape around for an old Epiphone or Yamaha to hang on the wall, and not worry about what happens to it. I've never been much of a Yamaha fan, I can't tell you why, thousands, if not millions of folks love them and play them every day. But I've run across lots of old Epiphones that were good players, sounded good, and were dirt cheap.
     
  4. soulman969

    soulman969 Telefied Ad Free Member

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    In a $300 price range, and in many cases even less, the top will be solid and in many cases so will the bottom. Those components are far thinner than the sides. It's the sides that are laminate.

    All wood guitars are far more prone to a lack of humidity or far too much of it which is why my Taylor now lives in it's case. I've already had to have it repaired once because it split along the book match on the back.

    Laminate guitars aren't as susceptible to their climate so any well constructed one should survive being left out most of the time. That said I'd still suggest you humidify it occasionally anyway just to keep it more playable. You won't have to tweak the neck as often if you do.

    I just bought a Breedlove acoustic/electric for the exact same reason that your searching for one. It's a C250/CMe and recently MF had them on sale for $300. IMHO that's a bargain for a guitar this nice. It's laminate body but the top is solid cedar which is much softer than spruce. It sits out often and so far I've had no problems with it's stability at all. All it has is a gig bag and if I'm not gonna be using it for a few days I'll put it back in there along with a humidifier so it keeps it's stability and won't dry out too much.

    I've found that Martin's guitars seem less susceptible to their climates as well and as Sam suggest those synthetic bowl shaped Ovations seem nearly indestructible and you can easily pick one up for around $300. Takamine's also seem to do well out here in the dryness. I've played with quite a few guys who use them and travel with them frequently so they have to do the airline baggage thing as well.
     
  5. tfsails

    tfsails Friend of Leo's

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    You might also look for an old Martin Sigma guitar. I have a 1993 DM2 that has been very stable over the years. In the early 2000s I noticed the action getting higher, took it to a luthier and he said the top was bowing up due to lack of humidity (this was in the winter). He fixed it and I put a humidifier in it and it's been fine ever since. Both my Sigma and my Martin live in their cases, especially in the wintertime.
     
  6. Warm Gums

    Warm Gums Friend of Leo's

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    I would be more worried about an all solid guitar I have had many all laminate and many solid top guitars never had a problem knocking them about the house, in the same way(i do keep a small humidifier on if we run the heat more than usual) I did have an all solid classical get a few small top cracks that would close in the spring when the humidity went up, but it was VERY lightly constructed. Still its always good to have a beater for..well you never know. Pretty much any imported brand you have heard of sells an all lam box for @$100 (thy can often be found for $50 or less used) , Yamaha, Takamine (Jasmine) Fender, Epi. they are always on sale at GC or Music & Arts. Even the MF Rogue house brand is suprisingly playable after a string change & set up.
    You might consider a budget Nylon string or a small bodied steel string for a change of pace although 000's and such usually pack a solid top and cost a bit more, some times all older all laminate Yamahas can be found for a good price.
     
  7. Mind Flayer

    Mind Flayer Tele-Meister

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    Thanks for the suggestions. My solid top did start bowing due to dryness, which is why i am sensitive to it.
    I'll probably just go to GC and pick up a cheapie
     
  8. JohnSS

    JohnSS Tele-Meister

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    Yamaha, Alvarez, Washburn, Takamine, Ovation, Ibanez all have models in your budget that would work.
     
  9. studio1087

    studio1087 Telefied Silver Supporter

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    Go to just about any music store and try a Yamaha F325. It's usually part of a Gigmaker package with a digital tuner, case, strap, and strings. The whole kit is usually about $159.

    [​IMG]

    It has a laminated top, the sound is very nice (it's hard to beat Yamaha when you're under $300).

    I have one of these. I bought it about 5 years ago to leave at my moms home in Northern WI. It stays in a gig bag, never gets humidified in winter and it plays and sounds good.

    The average $100 Yamaha or Sigma Martin on Craigslist is going to be a good choice.
     
  10. studio1087

    studio1087 Telefied Silver Supporter

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    I dug this video out. It's a few years old. It was part of a blog started on the Acoustic Guitar Magazine forum to stop parents from buying Esteban guitar kits. My contribution.....

     
  11. simonc

    simonc Friend of Leo's

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    This. Or a yamaha fg720.
     
  12. bigben55

    bigben55 Friend of Leo's

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    I kept an Alvarez RD-8 in a camper in Indiana Apr-Nov for 3 years. Its only climate controlled on weekends when were there. Kept in its case, but still. It is 100% fine.
     
  13. hockey guy

    hockey guy Tele-Meister

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    Try a X series from Martin . I seen them used for around 300.00 $ Also look at the Epiphone Texans , those are nice as well.
     
  14. el cheapo

    el cheapo Tele-Afflicted

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    I've had my Yamaha FG700S for a while now. It sounded good from the start, and the more I play it the better it gets. No complaints here. I did replace the plastic saddle with a bone one. This gave it more volume and better string to string balance. I don't think you can go wrong with one of these.
     
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