Purchased from: local store
Features — 10
The Breedlove Stage Concert was made in Korea in either 2014 or 2015. It has a rosewood fretboard with 20 frets, a mahogany neck, a solid sitka spruce top, rosewood back and sides, and a gloss finish. The body style is a single cutaway with Breedlove's pinless bridge, which makes changing strings really effortless. It is fitted with an LR Baggs TCV pickups along with a built in tuner and EQ controls. These come in handy while plugged in, and while they are accurate, the tuner has a somewhat slow response. The machine heads have an 18:1 gear ratio, which makes the strings stay in tune very well. Included is a hefty gig bag along with an owner's manual, allen key for ajdusting the action, and a replacement bridge saddle.
Sound — 9
I play rock and blues, and while it can withstand aggressive Zakk Wylde style leads (which I sometimes indulge in), I mainly use it for strumming and fingerpicking. I am using D'Addario EXP 16 strings. Unplugged, this guitar's tone is crisp, articulate, and well balanced in terms of EQ, and thanks to its Breedlove Bridge Truss has remarkable sustain. The bass is pronounced but not overpowering. Due to its relatively small size, however, you don't quite get the same low end you would get on a dreadnought style body. Even when plugged in (I play through a Fishman Loudbox Mini), it maintains its acoustic tone, including when using effects such as chorus and reverb, which in my opinion is something you lose with a lot of lower price acoustics. The "phase" button makes it sound somewhat dull to me, so I don't use it.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
I was overall impressed by the factory setup, although it may or may not have had some work done at the store. I only had to make minor adjustments to the action and intonation. The compact body and slim, smooth neck make this guitar really comfortable and effortless to play, making it an ideal choice for electric players looking to gracefully transition to an acoustic. You can tell that the company puts a lot of effort into finish - I could just look at this guitar for hours. Its unique body and headstock shape really it make it stand out from the crowd.
Reliability & Durability — 9
I've had this guitar for two months and have only played out with it a handful of times, but it has not caused me any problems yet. When cared for properly, the hardware and electronics should last for a long time. The strap buttons are shorter than I'd like, making it a bit of a chore to put my strap on. I would feel comfortable playing a gig without a backup. I feel certain that the finish will stay on years to come. Despite its lack of pickguard there are no visible scratches below the soundhole as of yet. There are, however, a few scratches on the back side, so be mindful of where you lean it against.
Overall Impression — 9
I've been playing for 8 years but haven't owned a really good acoustic guitar up until now. I was previously using a cheap Fender of some kind. I doubt I'll use that one much anymore because the Breedlove Stage Concert fits like a glove, which is why if it were lost or stolen I would probably get another. I tried several other guitars of various companies with the same price tag at the shop, and none of them compared. Breedlove is in my opinion an underrated company and should be given serious consideration before going out to buy a Martin or a Taylor.