View Full Version : Well, a man's entitled to change his mind...

10-20-2018, 12:59 PM
Despite what I've said in other posts to the contrary, I find I'm now really wanting to buy myself a quality electro acoustic, and *HAD* narrowed things down to either a Martin or a Taylor.

However, I've been reading recently that MANY new Martin owners have been complaining about the poor build and set up quality of their instruments. (I have no personal experience or knowledge of this - just what I've been reading on various guitar groups I belong to.)

So, assuming I want a Taylor, and I have a limited budget of between 600 - 1,500 (UK), can any of you offer advice on which model etc?

I fully understand that I should go out, try a few, and see what suits, but I just wanted some general thoughts from you more expert players before I do, so I have a baseline of knowledge to start from.

10-20-2018, 03:41 PM
Sound advice Bill - thank you.

10-21-2018, 01:32 AM
I wouldn't worry about build quality on new a Martin guitar. Sure maybe one might slip through every now and then but that is what warranty and return policies are all about. You have been playing guitar much longer then me so my only qualification for giving you advice is I own both Taylor and Martin. Living in a large metropolitan area with many music stores I have played plenty of both.

Both are excellent instruments and along with Gibson make of the Big Three in the guitar world. They all have their own signature sound and neck dimensions so you gotta play a bunch and find which ones you like. Taylor are famous for their high level of consistency in build quality and tone. Do you want to stick with a dreadnaught or are you looking to get a completely different size and shape????

10-21-2018, 01:47 AM
I sorta like the dreadnaught sizes and shapes (which also have the advantage of hiding my fat belly from those watching a bit lol), but I am open minded Dave.
Not many stores my way that stock either Taylor or Martin, so I think I need to find a good stockist, travel over, and allocate a day out playing as many as I can to see what I feel suits best. It'll be a nice day out anyway.

10-21-2018, 08:14 AM
I have been lucky to play many Taylors and Martins, figured out what I liked then bought used. As with ukuleles you can get really great instruments for about 30% - 40% below new retail.

Martin really is the dreadnaught king, they invented them. Their Road Series is a great bargin for an all solid wood instrument with out the high gloss finish or bling. Think of a Martin D18, which is the gold standard of dreadnaughts, at about half the price because it is a bit plain Jane. That should come in at your $1500 budget, not sure about the UK pricing levels compared to USA stores. Heck I live in Canada and our dollar is dismal in comparison.

10-21-2018, 08:32 AM
Cheers Dave...I'll certainly investigate doing just that!

Swamp Yankee
10-22-2018, 04:18 AM
honestly... IMO, neither Taylor nor Martin have onboard electrics that are all that good..my suggestion is to find an acoustic you like and have a luthier fit it with a Baggs pickup. Finding a Martin w/out electronics is easier than finding a Taylor w/out. But whether you lack availability of those makes or not, you've got to visit some shops and try some guitars out.

FWIW, I own guitars by both makers but I prefer the consistent ease of playing and buld quality.of Taylor over Martin. I also prefer Taylor over Martin for long term ownership. Simply.put: Taylor's neck system makes neck resets a breeze. A luthier can reset a Taylor neck in a matter of minutes. Drop it off and pick it up the same day and it will cost you about $35. A Martin neck reset takes weeks and costs hundreds of dollars.

10-22-2018, 02:24 PM
Thanks for the insight Swamp Yankee. I’ll certainly take your thoughts on board.

10-22-2018, 04:30 PM
My friend's selling his Martin HD-28 that he bought in 1994. It's in immaculate condition & looks like it's never been played. The only thing is, it would probably cost a LOT to ship it from Hawaii to the UK.

Ukulele Eddie
10-24-2018, 12:45 PM
I am a new-to-me owner of a used Martin that I like a lot (no pickup, however). Taylor and Martin tend to have distinctive voices, so that will surely be a factor to consider.

There are some other brands that are great bang-for-the buck you might consider. While made overseas, Eastman and Blue Ridge both have reputations for strong value and excellent quality control. Bump up a level in price and Larrivee is often a great value compared to Taylor and Martin.

Enjoy your search!

10-24-2018, 01:25 PM
Thanks Eddie. So much advice and thoughts from everyone to take on board. I'm greatful for them all.