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Classical Guitars - Buying Tips

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I have between 200 and 250 to spend on a new classical, more specifically a Yamaha classical, but they have heaps of different models. What are the best quality finishes, woods etc I should look out for?

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There is a guy on the classified ads part of this forum selling a classical guitar' date=' seems pretty good :cheers:[/quote']

That's me, you could check it out if you so desire, PM me. As obvious as it may seem, my best advice would be to buy the most expensive one you can get; some cheaper instruments I've seen around really are atrocious with bad frets &c. Back and side woods are almost always laminates until you get into custom-built guitars; at this price range, anything should be fine as long as it's not plywood or something ;). As far as top woods go, it's a matter of personal preference; cedar and spruce are the big two that you'd see around most often. Most players I know prefer spruce as it's got a nice bright tone, whereas I prefer cedar, which is (in my experience) slightly harder to find, but has a more mellow tone. The difference is somewhat comparable to bridge pickup vs. neck pickup on an electric guitar, although brightness of tone is more easily controllable on a classical guitar by playing sul tasto or ponticello, depending on your needs. Yamaha are a well-regarded brand, I have a friend in Canada who plays one which is a fine guitar. Alternatively, you could PM me and I can give you details of a classical I'm selling right now, which has a cedar top and mahogany sides.

Cheers

Scott

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For the same price, yes, there are better than Yamaha about. If you ever see a Raimundo around, grab- I've had two (using one right now) and known several people who've also had them and they're top notch for the price.

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I'm being awkward, I just trust Yamaha. The entry level C40 is very good so I know the dearer ones will be acceptable. There are about 10 models in my price range, process of elimintation time!

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The thing you have to remember with any acoustic instrument is that the wood makes the sound (and the space inbetween the wood of course) and you can play 100 cheap guitars and they will be shit, but if 1 of them happens to have the wood matched up (either by skill or by accident) it will sound fantastic. I don't know how any manufacturer can put model numbers on acoustic instruments. they are all made of different bits of wood and will all sound different.

There was an incident I remeber back in the nineties involving a cheap 10 Chinese factory violin. It happened purely by chance to have the wood matched up perfectly and the lucky sod who bought it, later sold at auction for 180,000! The moral of the story? - play before you buy!

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True. I've played lots of same-model classical guitars that do sound totally different... if you play a nice example of a certain model, there is really no guarantee it'll sound as good

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