OM-28V review by Martin

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.8 (15 votes)
Martin: OM-28V

Purchased from: GC

Sound — 10
The sound out of an OM-28V can be described as sweet and complex. Beautiful overtones and you can really hear the wood. The bass is deep and rich and the treble just sings - can't emphasize enough how pretty the trebles are. It's volume is impressive as well, pretty darn loud. It really excels for finger picking, gentle strumming, lead playing, and strum-arpeggio patterns. You can flat pick it, but if that's all you play I'd try to steer you towards a dreadnought. I'd rate it as quite versatile. I play tuned to Eb and use medium strings.

Overall Impression — 10
I play rock, blues, and folk and this guitar is terrific for that. I've been playing for about 15 years. My other guitars are a Taylor GS8, Washburn D47, and a Martin GPCPA1. I researched a lot when I decided on this guitar. I was searching for an OM body style and my decision mainly came down to the string spacing - this guitar has a relatively wide 2 and 5/16" spacing at the bridge. If lost or stolen I would absolutely replace it. It's an essential part of my sound and collection. I love the way this guitar sounds, feels in my hands, and looks. Everything about it is simply wonderful. My favorite feature is the string spacing - it was the deal sealer. I compared it to a OM28 Marquis and I preferred the sitka over the adirondack. The marquis was great, but I'd maybe leave the adi tops for dreadnoughts. (A D28 Marquis is next on my list!) If your looking for a versatile OM guitar it's definitely worth your time to take a look at the OM28V. They just sing.

Reliability & Durability — 10
Registered Martin's come with a lifetime warranty so I'm confident it's built to last. I'm under the impression that it will stand up to live playing perfectly. Hardware seems strong and reliable. I don't think the tuners are as good as they could be but they seem to be ok. I'm likely going to replace them at some point though. The strap bottom seems solid. I'd gig without a back up. The finish appears to be solid, but if it isn't no worries. Martin's, unlike some other guitars, age gracefully.

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The guitar was set up pretty well out of the box - medium action. The strings were older than dirt but that's an easy fix. The sitka top is beautifully figured and the aging toner looks terrific with the Herringbone inlay. The rosewood back and sides are a show stopper as this particular one has not just a gorgeous grain but also hints of red coloring. My only gripe is that the Herringbone inlay doesn't line up perfectly in the back with itself - it's off ever so slightly. The back binding also has something that appears to have bled over into them as well. Both flaws are VERY slight and did not affect my decision to buy, but I feel they should be addressed.

Features — 10
2012 OM-28V, it has a highly figured sitka spruce top with aging toner that gives it a slightly yellow-ish tint, it looks very cool. The back and sides are rosewood and just gorgeous. The Herringbone inlay on the top is real sharp, and it has Vintage off white binding. The finish is a very thin lacquer on the top and back and sides. The overall guitar is VERY light weight. Bridge is ebony, so is the fretboard. The neck appears to be mahogany however Martin specs on it's website only say "select tonewood", so I can only speculate.

1 comment sorted by best / new / date

    Hi and thanks for the thoughtful review. I've just purchased a D28 Marquis and it is perfect for me. If or when tI get another guitar it will be an 18V. That should cover all the bases.