#1
Hi all,

I'm starting out and just learning to play guitar.

I want to buy a reasonable quality and good sounding acoustic guitar.

I'm in the UK and looking to spend £120 - £150.

The Washburn WD10S and WD7Slook could good, does anyone have any experience or opinion on these two guitars.

They seems to have most of the right materials in their build but I have read that their set up isn't great and the strings, especially low E buzzes, is that true?

If you anyone can give me any advice on a well built and good sounding acoustic for a beginner in the £150 price bracket it would be appreciated.

Thanks for your help.
#2
Sorry fawad, I have no experience with either of those guitars. Are you taking lessons from a guitar teacher, or trying to teach yourself? If the latter....maybe you should consider getting Rocksmith 2014 and one of those electric guitar starter sets? I had a blast with it when I came back to playing in December of last year (hadn't played in over a decade).

Converting pounds to dollars shows you have a budget of approximately $230. People will be telling you "if you just increase your budget x amount you can get such and such". Others will tell you to go with a used instrument.

If you want to get a new acoustic for under $240 there are multiple choices. Yamaha, Epiphone, Fender, Alvarez, Oscar Schmidt, Dean, etc have offerings under $240. At that price point you don't have to get the bottom of the line model either, so you could get something relatively decent. There are a lot of brand snobs in this forum...don't pay any attention to their rants. If we listened to those guys there would only be 3 guitar companies in the world making acoustic guitars!

I don't think it matters which brand you buy at your stage. Just make sure to find a guitar that has low action, with a straight neck (can be tuned properly), and which sounds okay to YOU. I'd recommend against nylon string guitars....yes the nylon strings are easier to fret, but on the other hand the guitar they are on is likely to have a wider fingerboard (which is more difficult to finger, imo) and will tend to have higher action as well. Go with steel strings...your fingers will hate you until you develop callouses, but after that you are golden (2-3 weeks).

My advice is to pore through classified ads, craigslist, whatever you have in UK and try to find guitars that other beginners are selling after giving up. I found a Taylor 110 e locally for $400 that a guy is selling after giving up on learning. I doubt you could find one of those for $240, but you might be able to find a used Taylor Big Baby (which is nice!) or Taylor Baby for $240 or so. I occasionally see Seagulls going for $300 (but never less! Weird!). Make sure that whatever guitar you are looking at has low action and a relatively narrow fingerboard (like an electric). That also helps when you start playing electrics, btw.

It doesn't matter in the long run which you pick. If you lose interest the guitar you buy will probably end up in classified ads with the rest. If you continue playing you'll eventually want to move on to a nicer guitar, and by that time you will have a better idea of what model you want. I got back into acoustics on a cheap used Dean Tradition, but it handles like an electric guitar and is great to practice on. Last month I decided to reward myself for my progress and bought a Taylor Big Baby. Big spender, right? LOL.
#3
Hi TobusRex,

Thanks for your reply and comments, really helpful thank you.

I've been trying to teach myself from books and on a cheap strat copy electric I have but want to get a nicer acoustic to learn on. I am also planning on starting lessons soon and really looking forward to that.

Thanks for the advice on the low action and neck.

I've been doing some research and think its going to be between Epiphone AJ220S, Yamaha FG700MS or the Washburn WD10S. They all look quite similar and good, each around the £150 mark. I think the Wasburn is winning on the build but the Epiphone looks really good lol.

I will check out the classifieds too and see if I can find a cheap Taylor big baby, is that the same size as a standard dreadnought?

Thanks
#4
Fawad,

Ah, so not a complete beginner. I remember trying to teach myself guitar with Mel Bay books, lol. Glad to hear you have some experience with holding and playing guitar, it'll be useful for your acoustic guitar search.

I've heard the Epiphone AJ220 is a good guitar for the money, especially if you can get the acoustic-electric version. All the Yamahas I've tried at stores had high action and I passed, but people swear they are great.

The Taylor Big Baby is a 15/16 scale Dreadnaught. Not quite full scale it's just a tad smaller than my Dean Tradition (which is standard Dreadnaught). I really like the Big Baby, it has a very sweet top end. I love the way it handles, perfect action and the width of the fingerboard is perfect for me (average sized hands). Figures that 3 weeks after I paid the full new price for the Big Baby ($457 including taxes, came with a really nice softcase) I saw the same guitar on sale on Craigslist for $250. (sigh). If you find one for $250 or so try it out, everybody who picks one up falls in love with it.

What kind of music are you planning on playing on the new acoustic? Fingerstyle? If you enjoy folk music check out the video I'm linking below. It's a good watch if you have the time, but the best part for beginner guitar players starts at about 40:15. Stookey goes on to talk about picking up a guitar and learning how to play after years away. He goes on later in the video to explain that just picking up a guitar and screwing around can lead to surprising discoveries. It's actually kind of inspiring for a beginning player.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4li79dowM7c
Last edited by TobusRex at Jul 24, 2015,
#5
Hi mate

Thanks for the comments and the video, I've not heard of him before but found the guy really interesting.

I've been teaching myself from a couple of books which has been going ok but want to progress my playing so really looking forward to starting some lessons.

I like a mix of music but Rock is my favourite,more recently have been getting into country music and blues.

I've got my acoustic guitar choice down to three now

Epiphone AJ220s
Washburn WD10s
Yamaha FG700s

Will let you know which one i get when I finally decide lol

Cheers
#6
I don't have experience with those guitars, but I've heard the Yamaha and Epi 220 are pretty good. If you find one and like the way it feels and sounds and think it's a good deal then get it.

Taylor Big Baby is pretty nice. It is the guitar getting all the play around my house. Converting to pounds it's a little outside your price range at 270 pounds new, but used I bet you could find one within your range. It's a sweetheart. Also...keep your eye open for something like the Dean Tradition. It's got slim neck, handles a bit like an electric. Sound quality is okay, but it handles like a kitten. You can maybe get one of those for 70 pounds used. Put some Elixirs on there and you are golden.
Last edited by TobusRex at Jul 26, 2015,