Hi, everyone. What in your opinion would be a good cutaway classical guitar in the intermediate price range (say, $1000-1500)? I'm kind of an old-timer, hands & wrists getting a little stiff, can't quite handle the higher fingerboard stuff any more. I know the Kenny Hill New World Fingerstyle pretty well -- it's nice alright, although that narrow fingerboard can be exasperating sometimes and the bass sometimes booms a bit much. Any thoughts?
Pretty much all cutaway guitars I've seen fall into the "crossover" category.
In other words they have a narrow neck and a - probably poor - pick up system.
There's a wonderful world of guitar music that falls below the twelfth fret.
Yeah actually the 4necwe has a 50mm nut. I haven't seen a cutaway with a wider neck than 50mm, in any brand. Still, we are talking 1 mm less on each side of the fingerboard. It still may be okay for you?
A bit of shameless self-motion....I have a Kenny Hill Player 650 cedar with an elevated fingerboard and ports for sale in the classified section. It's not a cutaway, but the elevated fingerboard really does improve higher fret access....very impressive. It has a 51mm nut width, so no cramped feeling of a narrower neck. It's right in your budget zone and it's basically brand new.
I had for a short time a few years back a Takamine, I think it was a TC132SC cutaway, pretty sweet guitar (until a guest banged it up! some guest!) and, yes, with a built-in pick-up, but it did have a full classical fretboard, as I recall, so it wasn't quite a true crossover. I tried to play a La Patrie cutaway classical in a Guitar Center once, it too had the full classical neck, forget what model it was, but just couldn't stand the tone. I like the Hill Player over-all, subject to a few qualifications -- that's the one I was referring to earlier (although it doesn't have the elevated fingerboard & ports).
I'm not sure why the Takamines are not so widely available, but they still would be a reasonable choice if you can find one. The TH5C (Hirade made by Takamine) or TH90 are a slightly more expensive version of the 132SC. The TH90 has an oval soundhole. It would be good to try one before you buy. I have heard several fairly good ones and one or two exceptional ones.
"When I was younger, I could remember almost everything, whether it happened or not." Mark Twain
Hanika's cutaway models could be a good choice. Pickups are an option, not standard. The list price for a BasisCut PF (spruce/rosewood) or PC (cedar/rosewood) is € 1'590.-. Thømann (Europe's biggest seller) lists a PC for € 1'400.-, but I'm sure you can have a PF as well for the same price, when you're asking. Now the bad news: the nut width of a BasisCut is only 50 mm and I do not know, if and how Thømann ships outside the EU.
I bought a" Keven Lee" just recently,and I must say its got a great sound.They go for about R2000.00 S A.Great value for money .Ive done two gigs with it absolutely no feedback on stage.Intonation also perfect.I had to do a bit of filing on a few frets but she seems okay now.I don't know what pick-ups it's using but it sounds no different to a Takamine I had years back.
I would recommend that you also consider the Yamaha NX series.
These certainly look interesting. If a 48mm nut is OK then there are a whole bunch of "Stage Guitars" with brand names like Aranjuez, Martinez which might fit the bill. Thinner bodied than the Yamaha but I like the one I tried out once.
Before I decided to make the switch to 640 mm scale length, I had a Yamaha NCX900, and I was impressed with it. It had a 52 mm nut width, and felt and played like my Yamaha GC32C, and sounded almost as good......hard to tell much difference.
2017 Jason Wolverton spruce/maple, 640, "Luz Blanca"
2016 Kenny Hill New World Estudio 640, cedar
2015 Kenny Hill Performance 640, C/IR
2017 Kenny Hill Player Cutaway, 640, Sp
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