Price paid: $ 260
Purchased from: Craigslist
Features — 10
The Sonoran SCE by Fender is made in China (I'm pretty sure) and is overall an excellent intermediate acoustic-electric. It has 20 frets on a rosewood fretboard with a solid spruce top and a gloss urethane finish. The body is a cutaway style made of solid spruce on the top and laminated mahogany on the back and sides. The bridge is a rosewood vintage-style fender "viking" bridge with a compensated bone saddle. The tuning pegs are vintage-style in aged white plastic. The tuner that comes attached to the guitar is the fishman isys III system with an active onboard preamp and tuner. I got the bag with it, and bought my own strap.
Sound — 9
This was my first guitar, so I bought it looking for a variety of sounds, and I am pleased with the results. I play mostly rock music, such as Nirvana, Arctic Monkeys, etc. However, I also play very soft acoustic and pop music. The guitar is well suited for all types of music, and the cutaway body style allows me to reach up to the 14th fret comfortably. When I plug it in, I plug it to a Fender Acoustasonic Jr. amp. Plugged in, it produces a deeper sound than unplugged. It has a very full sound regardless of if it is plugged in or not. The only thing that I cannot easily do on this guitar is heavy rock things, such as power chords and bends. The sound is excellent for an acoustic, and I would compare the sound to that of an 800-900$ acoustic.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The action of the guitar is a great comprise between too high and too low, and I would recommend this to somebody learning guitar because you have to press the strings slightly harder than an electric, making it ideal for memorizing chord shapes. The person I bought this guitar from had only played it about 10 times, meaning that the finish was excellent and also had the stamp of approval from the factory on the back of the headstock. The durability of this guitar is impressive, considering all of times I've bumped it on my desk while playing. The tuning pegs and viking bridge specifically work excellently, keeping the strings in tune and the sound full and strong.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I have been playing this guitar for 7 months, and I can say that it definitely would be able to play multiple gigs. The finish has lasted fairly well, and I usually polish it once a month. The strap buttons work excellently, and it is great for gigs because of its aesthetic, durability, and sound quality. The stings stay in tune very well, and the only times I retune is when I play in drop D or half-step down. What really sells this guitar for gigs is the aesthetic. If you are looking for a guitar that the audience will love, this is an excellent option.
Overall Impression — 10
I play mostly rock, so this was a fairly good match. I have been playing for 7 months, and this guitar has been excellent for learning on. For the guitarist looking for a very specific aesthetic, I would recommend this guitar, as it comes in multiple colors, like Surf Green, Shell Pink, Lake Placid Blue, and it also comes in Natural colors. I would likely buy this guitar again if it were stolen. What I love is the headstock. This is the only acoustic guitar I have seen with an electric headstock. I searched for five months before selecting this guitar, and I prefer it over a classic "beginner" guitar, like a Yamaha or Ibanez. My favorite feature is the onboard tuner, which works excellent and keeps the strings in tune. If you are considering buying an acoustic, the Sonoran SCE is worth looking into.