Price paid: £ 275
Purchased from: Ebay
Sound — 10
I play Folk and blues on my S6 and it is the best sounding guitar I have ever played. It's like being in love (bear with me). I know there's Martin's and Taylor's out there, and everyone seems to agree that they're the paradigm of beauty, nay, perfection. But I have never even thought about looking at another Acoustic guitar - never mind picking one up in a shop and trying it out. The Seagull is my girl and she satisfies all my needs. When flat picking rich bass notes ring out over the strumming, finger picking sounds smooth and easy and I have strummed this bitch hard and never heard her buzz. From first fret on the low E to the last fret on the high e, everything rings out.
Overall Impression — 10
I play Dylan, Drake, Young, Guthrie, Donovan and this guitar kills. Everyone who has ever played it has commented on how good it is (I have friends who work in guitar shops and get to play Martin's and Taylor's all day and they agree this guitar is special). I also own a Tanglewood Acoustic, similar body with a cutaway and pick up. The Tanglewood is a nice guitar (300 new - I only have this because its my girlfriends and she doesn't play) but can't touch the Seagull. If this was stolen I would have to track it down. As the Cedar ages it adapts to your sound and becomes YOUR guitar. I would rather lose my Les Paul than this. Failing tracking it, I would buy it again. Full price this thing is a steal. Handmade in Quebec, Cedar top, expert craftsmen, eco-friendly and $500. Easily worth double. You can see how it's made on Seagull's website and they have very friendly staff if you send them an e-mail.
Reliability & Durability — 10
Once I tune this in, stretch the strings and tune again it NEVER goes out of tune. I've played it in open D, G and A and had no problems. I have snapped a string on this since the day I got it and that's the god's honest truth. The Cedar and Rosewood could do with some oil to prevent cracking (some slight cracking in first fret) but this is over 20 years old and spent a lot of time in California. I'd recommend a hardcase like all acoustic guitars. The back and sides won't dink but the top and neck are quite soft.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
I don't think this was played much before I bought it so I imagine it's set up the way it came out of the workshop. Never had a problem with the action. You won't be able to play slide on this guitar (possibly with a glass slide and a light touch) without adjusting the action. The guitar is much smaller than a jumbo or dreadnought. It's made for fingerpicking and thoughtful playing, the neck is wider than most guitars so lots of space for picking out the strings and notes. Takes some getting used to at first but afterwards other guitar necks just feel too compact and crowded. Looks beautiful, but very understated. It's a working man's guitar, no thrills here - just solid craftsmanship. Mine doesn't have a scratchplate and looks better for it. It's scratched up a bit now from my plec but... Looks better for it. This guitar gets beaten up well. A dink just improves it's charm.
Features — 10
Going by the serial number, I think this guitar was made in the 80s or early 90s. I bought it off eBay about 5 years ago with a hardcase from a pawnshop in California. I sure feel bad for whoever had to pawn this. It has a solid Cedar top, it has aged and is now a rich tobacco sort of brown. It had hardly been played as far as I can tell. The back and sides are a laminate Wild Cherry I believe. Has a really great looking grain to it. Fretboard, not sure, but I'm gonna go out on a limb and say Rosewood? It's a bit lighter than that found on a normal guitar, and very beautiful.