when i thought about bringing my seagull s6 to the beach, the park and family gatherings, i discovered i felt pretty protective of it, so i decided to get something really cheap - and i definitely found it in the $79.99 Rogue Grand Concert Cutaway Acoustic-Electric Guitar. while it is all laminate, the top is spruce and the guitar is bound and has a rosewood fingerboard. the guitar is available in both natural and sunburst finish, and i went for the natural. when i ordered the guitar last weekend, it was being offered with a free gig bag. i added a set of strings and a dvd to bring to total to over $99.99 so the shipping would be free.

the guitar shipped on monday and musician's friend sent me the tracking number. it arrived wednesday at my post office box, but i was unable to pick it up till today (friday).

the first thing i noticed is that the guitar isn't a thinline, but is a bit thin - which is good for me for this particular guitar. the finish was glossy with no issues, and the pickguard was wearing its protective plastic. the guitar had no scratches or other issues, and everything was how it should be. okay, admittedly i didn't go over it like i would a new taylor, but the guitar looked fine. the rosette looked a bit cheap, but only if you paid attention.

the guitar came with d'addario strings, not martins as claimed, which was fine with me as i use d'addarios. when i first tuned it, it wouldn't stay in tune, but i didn't panic and it turned out it was because the strings were improperly wound on the pegs and with some retuning the slipping soon sorted itself out and the guitar stayed in tune afterwards.

i'm a fan of low action, and have never found a new guitar with low enough action, but i must admit that the action on the rogue was nice and low - just the way i like it. it has a VERY slight buzz on one fret if you play it hard, which i don't usually. i may deal with it or just leave it alone if it doesn't usually buzz when i play. as i said, it's very slight.

i was concerned when i ordered the guitar as the nut isn't that wide - i don't like my fingers crammed together - but apparently the string spacing is pretty good because the guitar was comfortable to play. and of course, with such low action, it felt good on my fingers. the thinner body also felt comfortable to hold.

the guitar sounded okay when played unplugged. it didn't sound like a goodall or a taylor gc8, but it sounded better than a lot of guitars in its price range and class. there were no issues with the sound, and considering it is an all-laminate guitar, it's not bad. it doesn't sing like the seagull but it sounded fine although with a touch more sound of the strings, if you see what i mean. i'll be interested to see what it sounds like with other strings.

putting the battery in was annoying and there are no instructions, but after a minute you figure it out. you can't turn the electronics on with a button - you have to plug the guitar in and the electronics turn on. the light flashes twice to let you know and then stay out while you play. the pre-amp is a fishman, although obviously from the price of the guitar, not exactly their top of the line model

and now the surprise. plugged into my husband's line6 spyder 2, the guitar sounded good. in fact, with a little of this and that added, i was quite pleased and pretty impressed for the money. the built in equalizer was very effective when i wanted more bass and the volume control was sensitive and worked well. seems that even the bottom of the line fishman delivers some pretty good sound.

the free gig bag surprised also surprised me. it's this one http://accessories.musiciansfriend.com/product/Musicians-Gear-Deluxe-Dreadnought-Gig-Bag?sku=545115
and is better padded than i expected. it's a bit big - it is a dreadnought gigbag, and the guitar is a grand concert - but worked well. it has a big front pocket and a small overpocket and the zipper worked great. it has backpack straps, which i prefer.

the guitar also came with an allen wrench, a 9 volt battery and a guitar cable - not a skinny one, either.

if you're a broke musician, beginner or an experienced player looking for a beater, the Rogue Grand Concert Cutaway Acoustic-Electric Guitar rocks. at $79.99 you aren't going to sound like al di meola, but it is a surprisingly easy-playing guitar with an okay unplugged sound - better than some others in the $50 to $150 range - and it sounds good plugged in. if you're looking for a high end guitar for performing live, this isn't it. i wasn't expecting much, and it delivered far more bang for my music buck and better quality than i was expecting

Well that's a sweet deal there. I'm no real player by any means but really I have only came across a couple cheap guitars that just sounded so bad you couldn't play them. I mean I played a First Act that I think with some new strings would be good enough to take camping and stuff.
But like you said and I will say too. If you play in a band or preform out at a gig or something and are a seasoned player. You wouldnt get one for that. But just as for having one to take that you don't have to worry
about. It will be perfect.
Well good review. I may look into those for my wife.
i have a young relative with a first act. it's awful - i can't bear to play it.
Yeah it is probably the worst guitar i have ever played. But i still think with just a tad of work and a set of strings i could use it to hall to the camp site or something like that.

From what you were saying about the one you got it sounds perfect. And the price is sweet as well.
First acts are a joke but you know what i meant.....:-)