Are more expensive acoustic guitars better than ?

Are more expensive acoustic guitars better than ?

When it comes to guitars, there is often a debate about whether more expensive acoustic guitars are truly better. At Midwood Guitar Studio in Charlotte, North Carolina, we have three acoustic guitars that offer a unique perspective on this topic. These guitars are made with the same materials, but each brand has its own characteristics that set it apart. Today, we will compare the Eastman, Bourgeois, and McPherson guitars to shed some light on this age-old question.

Let's start with the Eastman guitar, which is the most affordable option. Priced around $1,500, this guitar is mostly handcrafted without the CNC precision found in higher-priced models. The Eastman guitars are known for their idiosyncratic and handmade feel. The workshop in Beijing resembles a nineteenth-century violin workshop, where builders work with their hands. Although the cosmetic fit and finish might not be as exact, this guitar offers a tremendous value for its price. It features details such as a bone nut and a scalloped X brace, similar to higher-end guitars. However, the wood used in Eastman guitars may not be the choicest or as high-grade as in more expensive models, as it hasn't had as much time to cure and settle.

Moving up the price range, we come to Bourgeois guitars. Bourgeois is a renowned brand known for its innovation and craftsmanship. The Bourgeois guitar we have is a vintage model dreadnought with a Sitka top. One interesting feature is the result of input from Tony Rice, who advised Bourgeois on the placement of the braces, resulting in a dynamic response specifically tailored for dreadnoughts. Compared to the Eastman, the Bourgeois guitar offers more dimension, with a richer bass and subtle background activity in the notes. The natural decay of the notes showcases the guitar's grace and attention to detail.

Lastly, we have the McPherson acoustic guitar, which takes a structural reimagining of the classic Martin D-28. With a rosewood back and sides and an Adirondack top, this guitar showcases the advancements of technology and science. The neck is cantilevered, allowing for even vibration, and the sound hole is offset, improving the structural integrity of the top. A carbon fiber reinforced truss rod ensures the guitar is built like a tank, providing stability in fluctuating climates. The unique construction allows for easy vibration and produces a complex and dense tone.

In conclusion, the question of whether more expensive guitars are better depends on personal preference and priorities. Each of these acoustic guitars offers its own distinct qualities and caters to different price points. While the Eastman provides excellent craftsmanship at a more affordable price, the Bourgeois and McPherson guitars excel in their attention to detail and advanced construction techniques. The right choice ultimately depends on your taste, budget, and desired sound.

At Midwood Guitar Studio, we understand the nuances of guitar selection and aim to find the perfect instrument for each customer. We value transparency and will always explain what you get for your money. Our expertise as guitarists ensures that we provide the courtesy and respect that our customers deserve. So, whether you're a beginner or an experienced musician, we are here to assist you in finding your ideal guitar.

Jan 26th 2024 MGS Staff

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