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kudama 12-31-2020 07:02 PM

Classical Guitar Recommendations?
 
Hi everyone,

I'm not a classical player, but I am a fingerstyle player. Like many of you a classical guitar was my first. And I still have that guitar; a mystery Japanese brand guitar from the 60's/70's, all bi-laminate but feather light and plays great. I'm actually a huge fan of this guitar (it was my Grandmother's), it's the guitar I taught myself on. And it's one I come back to all the time. It's definitely a lower end guitar; has only 3 fan braces (instead of 5 or 7) and it looks to be a Cedar/Mahogany combo.

So I'm interested in an upgrade. But I don't really know where to start. In a perfect world, there's just a better version of my old guitar. Like a vintage Japanese all solid cedar/mahogany guitar. But I doubt that exists.

My criteria:
Budget - less than $1500
Not a crossover - I like the classical body shape and full size neck
Solid Cedar top
Solid (mahogany or rosewood?) back and sides


Any suggestions are greatly appreciated!

Dogsnax 01-01-2021 04:52 AM

I've said it before and I'll say it again.....I'm very impressed by the Cordoba C9 guitars. Incredibly consistent and they sound fantastic with the cedar/mahogany combination. In my humble opinion, the best sounding guitar in the Luthier series group of guitars. Outstanding bang for the buck, as you can buy them new for around 850-900.

RichardET 01-03-2021 10:06 AM

<$1500 classical guitar
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by kudama (Post 6591695)
Hi everyone,

I'm not a classical player, but I am a fingerstyle player. Like many of you a classical guitar was my first. And I still have that guitar; a mystery Japanese brand guitar from the 60's/70's, all bi-laminate but feather light and plays great. I'm actually a huge fan of this guitar (it was my Grandmother's), it's the guitar I taught myself on. And it's one I come back to all the time. It's definitely a lower end guitar; has only 3 fan braces (instead of 5 or 7) and it looks to be a Cedar/Mahogany combo.

So I'm interested in an upgrade. But I don't really know where to start. In a perfect world, there's just a better version of my old guitar. Like a vintage Japanese all solid cedar/mahogany guitar. But I doubt that exists.

My criteria:
Budget - less than $1500
Not a crossover - I like the classical body shape and full size neck
Solid Cedar top
Solid (mahogany or rosewood?) back and sides


Any suggestions are greatly appreciated!

Strongly urge you to consider the Kremona Romida Cedar ($1200) or the Takamine C132S ($1100).

ObiWanSymbian 01-04-2021 03:10 AM

My experience with b/s woods is that mahogany makes wonderful strumming/accompanying instruments.

Rosewood gives you that articulation and overtones you need for most classical pieces. And we need those overtones, since nylon strings tend to emphasise the fundamental frequencies.

I play an Alhambra and love every of their instruments from series 5 upwards. Lush and silky trebles.

Billm2067 01-07-2021 06:54 PM

I was looking for a crossover guitar and was considering several brands and settled on a Cordoba (I bought the Orchestra CE). If the rest of their line is anything like the Orchestra CE...they are fine guitars. I like the idea of having a truss rod in the guitar as well, as having been a steel string player for 40 years any guitar without a truss rod makes me uneasy!

kudama 01-10-2021 03:50 PM

Thank you everyone.

I ended up going down the rabbit hole of vintage Japanese classical guitars. Seemed only fitting since my original is one too.

I found a 1975 Aranjuez (Kohno made top) No.5, for a good price on Reverb.

specs:
Solid cedar top (made by Kohno with a 7 fan bracing style)
Solid or bilaminate rosewood back and sides (I've seen conflicting info, looks solid though because the grain patterns seem to match inside and out).

It's a lovely guitar. Just needed some cleaning and a new saddle and it was good to go. Very lively and rich tone. Easy to play.

Here's a video clip: https://youtu.be/KdymDc_lSH8

It does provide an interesting contrast to my original guitar. The differences of: solid vs. bilaminate, 3 fans vs. 7 fans, and rosewood vs. mahogany. It really highlights just how good an all laminate, 3 fan braced classical guitar can sound.

mawmow 01-16-2021 03:44 PM

I know I am quite late on this one but just bagan to read this particular chapter of the forum...

I do own an Aria AC-80 and a Ramirez R-4.
Both are good Red Cedar/Rosewood Spanish guitars.

But you know what ?
My more affordable recently got La Patrie Concert, Cedar/Mahogany,
has nothing to be shy besides the more expensive Spanish ones.

kudama 01-17-2021 03:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mawmow (Post 6606446)
I know I am quite late on this one but just bagan to read this particular chapter of the forum...

I do own an Aria AC-80 and a Ramirez R-4.
Both are good Red Cedar/Rosewood Spanish guitars.

But you know what ?
My more affordable recently got La Patrie Concert, Cedar/Mahogany,
has nothing to be shy besides the more expensive Spanish ones.

I used to own a La Patrie Motif, and it was a great little guitar. Nothing wrong with any of the Godin family of instruments.

I ended up getting a vintage Japanese classical guitar (a 1975 Aranjuez No. 5 with a Kohno top). And it's exactly what I was looking for.


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