DM25 Review

manufacturer: Ashton date: 08/05/2008 category: Acoustic Guitars
Ashton: DM25
The Ashton DM25 features tone-rich mahogany back and sides, with a rosewood fingerboard for super sustain and a warm mellow tone. Die-cast machine heads and a dovetail neck joint give this guitar extra tuning stability and strength, while a spruce top with a subtle matt finish contributes to its smooth tone.
 Sound: 8
 Overall Impression: 7
 Reliability & Durability: 4
 Action, Fit & Finish: 5
 Features: 5.5
 Overall rating:
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 Users rating:
reviews (2) pictures (1) 3 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 5
DM25 Reviewed by: unregistered, on june 22, 2006
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 152

Purchased from: Arties Music

Features: It has laminated top as expected for a guitar in this price range. Comes in a beginners kit with CD, strap, gig bag, picks, the basic stuff. Although the strap is just plain crap and the cd is useless unless you are an absolute and I mean absolute beginner, does have a cool chord dictionary though. // 5

Sound: As far as sound goes I played many "cheaper" acoustics before buying this, including corts and a Tanglewood. And compared to this they were really dull sounding. This was by far the best sounding sub $200 acoustic. However the standard Ashton strings should be thrown away immediately, I added a set of d'addario strings which gave a much nicer, brighter sound. However it does suffer from a bit of a buzz in the neck when played vigourously, but this could just be the truss rod not set up correctly. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: Comes with dodgy wood stain on the body, so easy to scratch and get dints in! also stain was a little bit patchy on the headstock. // 4

Reliability & Durability: Durable - no, won't withstand any kind of rough treatment at all, mine already has chips in 3 places and I try to take good care of it! // 2

Overall Impression: Basically it makes a nice sounding beginner/muckaround guitar. And for the price what do you really expect? It does the job and sounds much better than any of the other low end acoustics out there. But its potential is quickly reached and you will find yourself looking for something much better. But as I said before for a beginner or just a muckaround guitar it does the job quite well. // 6

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overall: 6.8
DM25 Reviewed by: Chrois, on august 05, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: A$ 199

Purchased from: Carlingford Music

Features: Ashton is an Australian designed and Chinese made brand. The company designs and makes mostly budget guitars designed for beginner players (or people Who just can't afford that much), so being a beginner's pack, this guitar fell in that range. It came with a gig bag, strap, picks, CD and a spare set of strings. In terms of the guitar itself, it is a dreadnought style acoustic with a spruce top, some wood that I don't know for the body, mahogany neck and rosewood fretboard. The bridge is also made of rosewood. It has 20 frets and the neck is attached with a dovetail joint. The newer models come with an inbuilt tuner (Ashton seems to be shoving those into everything nowadays), but since I got mine yonks ago, it doesn't have one. Comes with the two strap buttons (wow, how rare), die cast chrome machine heads and the nut, saddle and bridge pins are all made of plastic. The nut is glued on (with no groove in the headstock, i.e. glued straight next to the fretboard). The finish was just that non-glossy stuff, with no crazy staining done to it. // 6

Sound: This guitar was really surprising considering it's intended demographic and price range. It was my first guitar, and even though it sounded surprisingly good, matching up even to some of my friends' more expensive guitars. It's been a long time since I've bought it, and I modified it quite a lot (for a cheap beginner's guitar) so my memory of its original sound is a bit foggy. Now however (and I'm fairly sure back then), it's got quite a nice, full sound with plenty of bass. It's relatively well balanced across it's entire range, and I find that using mediums (.13 - .56) brings out the best of it, but that might just be my personal preference. I don't remember it having a lot of fretbuzz either, and currently it still doesn't (unless you attack it really hard, but that is the case with most/all guitars). I mainly focus on acoustic fingerstyle, with some random chord songs thrown in here and there when I feel like it. In terms of that style, the sound quality, tone etc. are pretty much suited to it for a beginner or el cheapo. It's pretty clear, with some nice strong harmonics and the large body means that if you want a little percussion out of it, you can get a relatively nice big sound. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: Being a cheap beginner's guitar, it has its moments when it comes to flaws. Some noticeable things I remember about it was that after some time of heavy tuning work etc, the machine heads began to give away and started to slip, meaning I had to replace them. This was however a flaw that presented itself over time, so they'll last you a fair while before they start to give out (mine took 2 years to break). Since the nut, saddle and bridge pins are made of plastic, they are rather fragile and will wear away quite easily especially if you use the acoustic a lot like I do. I found the nut had no big issues, but the saddle started to chip away at places and one of my bridge pins was on the verge of breaking in half. // 6

Reliability & Durability: This isn't really the sort of guitar to bash around. The finish seems really thin and I've got a few chips and scratches here and there. With the introduction of the heavier strings, the bridge on my guitar received a crack that runs through all the bridge pin holes, but as of yet it hasn't caused any problems. The strap buttons were pretty much absolute crap. The bottom strap button snapped off on my guitar, leaving the shaft of the screw holding it in place inside the wood of my guitar. I had to send it to a luthier to get it drilled out and replaced because of that. My style of playing tends to involve a lot of percussive motions including slapping the body around, and so far no problems have come from that, but I wouldn't trust it with a bigger hit than I normally do. The wood seems rather light and thin so I wouldn't try to bash the crap out of it. However I've used it with many performances at my school without the need for a backup and so far it hasn't let me down. You can trust it for small scale performances. // 6

Overall Impression: As I have said many a time before, this is indeed a beginners guitar designed and made. It's quite good quality for its price range and the sound quality of it is much better than a lot of the low priced acoustics currently on the market. You do have to watch out for those crappy breakable parts though. They're pretty annoying to handle. I ended up replacing all my saddle etc. with Tusq products, and the guitar still sounds great, if not better than it already did. However if it was to be stolen or lost, I would probably get something better. Don't get me wrong though. Despite all the criticism and cheapness, it's a nice instrument. I should mention for you to watch out for the newer manufactured guitars though, because they will probably be shoddier than what I have, seeing as I bought mine 3+ years ago. // 8

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