$122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Laudiesdad69
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$122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Wed Sep 06, 2017 9:40 pm

I've been on the hunt for a new travel guitar for road trips. I just don't want to take my Ramirez with me when I go to visit my son who lives in the next state. My car is 10 years old and has high miles. I would hate to break down somewhere and have to walk with it in inclement weather, or leave it in the car.

I was looking on THE BAY, and the Big River site. The cheapest decent, low-end guitar that I found with a solid top (let's face it, laminate tops don't sound so good) was a a Cordoba C3M for around 200 bucks. Better, but more expensive, was the Yamaha CG182 in either Cedar or Spruce for $449.

The Yamaha has a gloss finish and the Cordoba is matte finish. I was all set to get the Yamaha, until I ran into an ad on the Bay for a seller in Australia that sells a brand called Miguel Almeria. The model is 3CSR. It has a solid Cedar top, laminate back and sides with rosewood on the outside, and a rosewood fingerboard with side dots at 5, 7, and 9. The rosette is actual wood inlaid. Price? $122.OO US. 60 bucks to ship it. I've never heard of the Miguel Almeria brand before. Is this a brand that is only sold in Australia? Is it a re-labeled contract over-run of some other Brand? I've never seen a guitar with a solid top this cheap. Anybody know anything about this Brand? Should I risk $202.00 and take a chance?

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guitarseller345645
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by guitarseller345645 » Wed Sep 06, 2017 11:39 pm

I had one - the 50120 - it is OK. Suposedly made for GEWA.
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madrilla
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by madrilla » Wed Sep 06, 2017 11:55 pm

I think Miguel Almeria is a made up spanish name (like Jose Ferrer) for a brand that is made in China. Generally it's probably not worth international shipping for the price you are looking for. I would have thought you can get a good deal on a 2nd hand Cordoba in the US. In the UK, there are usually good deals (like under £100) on 2nd hand Admiras which are made in Spain and have solid tops, although the vintage laminate tops seem popular too.

You are right to go for cedar because they say if solid spruce is used in a cheap guitar it is likely to be low grade and will reflect in the sound. Whereas cedar usually has decent volume even in cheap guitars.

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Beowulf
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by Beowulf » Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:03 am

Yamaha is well made and robust.
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Laudiesdad69
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Fri Sep 08, 2017 5:32 pm

madrilla wrote:
Wed Sep 06, 2017 11:55 pm
I think Miguel Almeria is a made up spanish name (like Jose Ferrer) for a brand that is made in China. Generally it's probably not worth international shipping for the price you are looking for. I would have thought you can get a good deal on a 2nd hand Cordoba in the US. In the UK, there are usually good deals (like under £100) on 2nd hand Admiras which are made in Spain and have solid tops, although the vintage laminate tops seem popular too.

You are right to go for cedar because they say if solid spruce is used in a cheap guitar it is likely to be low grade and will reflect in the sound. Whereas cedar usually has decent volume even in cheap guitars.
One of the sellers that has these in the UK says that they are made in Spain. I don't know if I want to try it or not. I suppose it can't be any worse than a Yamaha C40 for the price. It has a solid top. As far as Cordoba goes I've had three different ones and they all developed cracks, so I am not really keen on trying another one. Although a truss rod would be nice.

Laudiesdad69
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Fri Sep 08, 2017 5:33 pm

guitarseller345645 wrote:
Wed Sep 06, 2017 11:39 pm
I had one - the 50120 - it is OK. Suposedly made for GEWA.
What is GEWA?

Carlos
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by Carlos » Fri Sep 08, 2017 6:59 pm

Laudiesdad69 wrote:
Fri Sep 08, 2017 5:32 pm
One of the sellers that has these in the UK says that they are made in Spain. I don't know if I want to try it or not. I suppose it can't be any worse than a Yamaha C40 for the price.
I don´t know about Miguel Almeria, but I would not denigrate a Yamaha C40 which is of very good standing for the price. This is my view a true guitar, which sounds remarkably well and has no tuning nor buzzing problem whatsoever- and there are probably around plenty of more expensive (budget) guitars whose sound is much worse and cannot be tuned. At least with a C40 you can continue playing and at no moment feel the envy to stop because of the guitar. In my view, the capacity to excel in such low budget range is really a sign of the company´s know-how in (industrial) instrument building.

And yes Admira also offer great guitars for the price ...

Laudiesdad69
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Fri Sep 08, 2017 8:17 pm

The guitar I am talking about has a solid top, Carlos. I was simply pointing out that for $122.00 I would be only able to get a c40, which is all laminate. I actually repaired one that belonged to a local youth program that got dropped and split the back from the sides at the lower bout. It's not made of the best woods. But for the price you don't expect it to be. The Almeria that I was talking about retails for 500 to 600 in UK. But if I had to actually pay that much I would definitely choose the Yamaha. I just figured that for $202 dollars shipped it probably wouldn't be too bad.

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guitarseller345645
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by guitarseller345645 » Sat Sep 09, 2017 12:22 am

Laudiesdad69 wrote:
Fri Sep 08, 2017 5:33 pm
guitarseller345645 wrote:
Wed Sep 06, 2017 11:39 pm
I had one - the 50120 - it is OK. Suposedly made for GEWA.
What is GEWA?
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https://www.gewamusic.com/
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Gewa,Deutschland,GEWA versteht sich als Partner des Musikinstrumentenhandels. Wir konzentrieren uns auf den Bereich der mechanisch-akustischen ...
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Laudiesdad69
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Sun Sep 10, 2017 1:24 am

Actually, I found some less expensive solid top Yamaha's used, and that seems to be the direction I am heading. Guitar center has several used ones, and I can always turn it to my local one if there turns out to have a problem.

astro64
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by astro64 » Sun Sep 10, 2017 2:37 am

Since you ask the question, I would say no, there is no point to get something cheap like that just for the occasional road trip. That Ramirez will be just fine in your car. I used a similar excuse to buy a travel guitar. I don't like playing the thing and never take it. Once you play a good guitar, a lesser one will always be, well, lesser.... We just make up excuses to buy more gear.

Laudiesdad69
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Sun Sep 10, 2017 8:01 am

astro64 wrote:
Sun Sep 10, 2017 2:37 am
Since you ask the question, I would say no, there is no point to get something cheap like that just for the occasional road trip. That Ramirez will be just fine in your car. I used a similar excuse to buy a travel guitar. I don't like playing the thing and never take it. Once you play a good guitar, a lesser one will always be, well, lesser.... We just make up excuses to buy more gear.
Well I am paranoid about taking the Ramirez after Souldier posted on what happened when he left his guitar in the car for a short time. When he arrived at his destination, and opened up his case, the bridge had lifted. I guess this was because of the heat. I am actually looking at a Yamaha GC22. I wouldn't exactly say is a lesser guitar, but I is less expensive. I went through 3 somewhat expensive guitars, and the one I have now was the best of all of them. I found two online sellers that have them for $799.00. And, while it is more expensive than the cheapies I was looking at, it should be satisfying to play.

madrilla
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by madrilla » Sun Sep 10, 2017 8:08 am

It would probably be worse but it could also have something useful or different for travelling. It could be different sound, smaller size (with same string spacing if needed), cutaway etc.

Laudiesdad69
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by Laudiesdad69 » Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:20 am

Well, I'm glad I waited. I found a Lucero lc200s for 179.99 shipped from MF. If I don't like it, I can send it back. I had actually bought a Lucero for my son and the workmanship, fit and finish were all good. No uneven frets, and no frets poking out beyond the fretboard. Low action.

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Beowulf
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Re: $122.00 solid Cedar top guitar, should I?

Post by Beowulf » Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:18 pm

Laudiesdad69 wrote:
Sun Sep 10, 2017 8:01 am
Well I am paranoid about taking the Ramirez after Souldier posted on what happened when he left his guitar in the car for a short time. When he arrived at his destination, and opened up his case, the bridge had lifted. I guess this was because of the heat. I am actually looking at a Yamaha GC22. I wouldn't exactly say is a lesser guitar, but I is less expensive. I went through 3 somewhat expensive guitars, and the one I have now was the best of all of them. I found two online sellers that have them for $799.00. And, while it is more expensive than the cheapies I was looking at, it should be satisfying to play.
For a comparison: my Yamaha GC-10 (1971) has traveled in a car trunk in very hot weather for over 40 years now and although I have forgotten to humidify it during many dry winters...it has nary a single crack, split or lifting of anything. It is probably the equivalent of today's GC42S...but if build quality is your concern, I think Yamaha is pretty good.

P.S. If your Lucero lc200s doesn't please.
1971 Yamaha GC-10

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