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  #1  
Old 04-21-2019, 04:54 AM
GiovanniW GiovanniW is offline
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Default First steel string acoustic guitar

Hi!
This is my first post on the forum. And surprice surprice itís about buying a new guitar.

I played classical guitar and some electric guitar during my early teen years. I am now turning 30 and have been trying to get back into playing many times during the last +10 years. And now iíve finally succeded! Iím learning the things i never did as a kid, music theory and truly finding my way around the guitar neck/fretboard.

I own an ok nylon string guitar, pretty high action and so so intonation (trying to fix that atm). And my old electric guitar(without amp) wich iím trying to get in working order.
But for awhile iíve really been wanting a steel string acoustic.
Iím one for researching alot and i can never really decide anything without anxiety.
I have been looking on youtube, comparing sound, body shape, materials brands. There is one small local music store, with very limited guitar selection. But i have also been looking online, and yesterday i went to a larger guitar store in the closest bigger city, to try models iíve been researching.
I think i have narrowed it down to two guitars. The Seagull Maritime sws concert hall and a Mayson M3 (newish chinese guitar brand).

I have my nylon for classical and some other styles. I love guitar music like Lukasz Kapuscinski on youtube.

So the steel string acoustic i want for other kinds of fingerstyle playing, like Celtic music, think Tony Mcmanus and Stephen Wake. Like what iíve tried with DADGAD tuning.
But also Lindsey Buckingham fingerpickingstyle. Really want to learn some flatpicking like Billy Strings (Doc Watson).
Iím a poor rythmic and strumming player, but want to change that. But strumming is certainly not my focus.
I want to start creating and arranging my own music as soon as i can also.

So now i could really use your help! yesterday i got to play(very shy and unconfident) a bunch of guitars. They didnít have the seagull maritime in shop, but i tried the seagull excursion folk and heart of wild cherry folk cutaway. Liked the small bodyshape and the feeling of the necks and fretboards.
And i also got to try the Mayson M3, also that one very comfortable neck, and balanced beautiful sound. I was close to buying the mayson.
The Mayson feels nice, and is interesting with solid ovangkol top, ovangkol laminate for back and sides. And i think i would be happy with it.
But then iím thinking that for 200dollars more i get the Seagull Maritime with solid spruce top, solid mahogany back and sides. A maybe more traditional sound. Throu youtube recordings i find it warm and dynamic with more projection than the mayson. But comparing via different youtube videos i understand is not optimal.

I donít have a big wallet, but i am worried that i might regret not going for the all solid instrument, with a more ĒtraditionalĒ sound, closer to my perception of a steel stringed guitar.
The seagull is also a little smaller and shallower, that could be a plus comfort wise.

The mayson is as i said interesting and also has got a cutaway.

Sorry for a long post, if you read all the way throu i would really appreciate your input. Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 04-21-2019, 05:26 AM
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TBman TBman is offline
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Take your time. It sounds like you put yourself into an either/or situation without any real reason. I like Stephen Wake's music and I'm learning a few pieces. I would not be happy playing his pieces on a Seagull. Tell us what your budget is so we can give your more suggestions. I'm not knocking Seagull (I have a folk), but it's not on my list of "guitars to buy for Celtic music."

One thing I will say is that you would be better off with an all solid wood guitar, but on an individual basis there could be a laminate back and sides guitar that sounds better than an all solid at lower price points at first glance.

Keep in mind that Stephen Wake and other Celtic players often use lower tunings than DADGAD (CGDGCD, CGDGAD for example) so you want to be sure you get a standard scale guitar (around 25.5")

I had picked up a used Guild D-120c (all mahogany). New, they sell for around $700. I alternate playing it between my Avalon and Larrivee.
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An Daingean {William Coulter}:


Celtic covers - videos

https://soundcloud.com/barry329


Avalon L2-320C, Guild D-55, Guild D-120C, Gibson J-45, Larrivee OM-05, Martin D-16GT

Alvarez ap66sb, Cordoba C5, Seagull Folk, Washburn D-10S

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Old 04-21-2019, 05:57 AM
Steel and wood Steel and wood is offline
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Find something that speaks to you. (If it was me, a reputable brand with a comfortable neck and a solid spruce top even if it has laminate back and sides). Ask for a set up before you take it home.

Good luck!
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Old 04-21-2019, 06:07 AM
musicman1951 musicman1951 is offline
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I would purchase the one that sounded good to my ear and felt good in the hands. I wouldn't worry too much about anything else. $200 rarely gets you a big difference in quality (or sometimes none at all).

I would not assume this was going to be your last and only purchase. Get one you like. Maybe it will last you a lifetime, maybe you'll find yourself in a different musical or financial situation down the road a piece. Get one you like and enjoy it just for that reason.
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  #5  
Old 04-21-2019, 06:21 AM
GiovanniW GiovanniW is offline
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Well i live in sweden and i donít have as much to choose from as i would in the US i think. I tried a bunch of guitars in two different shops. I find the seagulls comfortable and they feel good quality to me. The Maritime concert model has 25.5Ē scale length, the mayson has 25.4Ē scale length. I really like celtic music and it would be fun to learn to play in that style, but also other styles.

I could stretch to 750$, if it really does pay of. Otherwise iím more comfortable in the price range of the Mayson, 550$.

I felt the Mayson had great playability, but wondering if i would miss the tone of something more like spruce/cedar on mahogany after awhile.

Thanks for your replies!
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Old 04-21-2019, 06:47 AM
GiovanniW GiovanniW is offline
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Sorry to double post.

I want to add that i donít like any nut width narrower than 1.75Ē, i guess 1.72 could do if everything else is really good.

And iíve never felt comfortable with dreadnoughts.

I know that i most likely will buy another guitar sometime, but economically i think i will have to do for at least a couple of years.
My wife have bought an online guitar course and started playing, so i could hope she wants one sooner.
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Old 04-21-2019, 06:58 AM
zombywoof zombywoof is offline
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There is always going to be a balance between what you want to pay and what you want to hear. You seem to be overthinking it all. Buy what you like and do not lose any sleep over worrying about whether you made the right choice or not because I can almost guarantee that no matter what guitar you end up with it will not be your last.
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  #8  
Old 04-21-2019, 07:09 AM
GiovanniW GiovanniW is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zombywoof View Post
There is always going to be a balance between what you want to pay and what you want to hear. You seem to be overthinking it all. Buy what you like and do not lose any sleep over worrying about whether you made the right choice or not because I can almost guarantee that no matter what guitar you end up with it will not be your last.
Yes thank you! Thatís my problem whenever iím going to spend some money on a new purchase. I have a headache for weeks and canít think of anything else. I just want it over with so i can continue my life and resume learning the guitar.
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  #9  
Old 04-21-2019, 09:14 AM
Paddy1951 Paddy1951 is offline
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I don't think you can go wrong with a Seagull guitar. Much guitar, reasonably priced. You seem to come back to them in this discussion. They sound good. They are sturdy. It isn't necessary but your choice, of course, to go all solid on this, your first steel string.

The thing is even with all your research and questioning(certainly a good thing to do) you will only really get a sense of things by doing. Many people started with a Seagull and went to other guitars as they progressed and gained knowledge. And many of those people still have their Seagulls, still play and enjoy them even if they went on to one of the classic steel string guitars!

Despite the "beginners" category Seagulls are often put in, I believe they are more, much more than a beginners guitar.

Good luck to you.
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  #10  
Old 04-21-2019, 09:39 AM
Dru Edwards Dru Edwards is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GiovanniW View Post
Well i live in sweden and i donít have as much to choose from as i would in the US i think. I tried a bunch of guitars in two different shops. I find the seagulls comfortable and they feel good quality to me. The Maritime concert model has 25.5Ē scale length, the mayson has 25.4Ē scale length. I really like celtic music and it would be fun to learn to play in that style, but also other styles.

I could stretch to 750$, if it really does pay of. Otherwise iím more comfortable in the price range of the Mayson, 550$.

I felt the Mayson had great playability, but wondering if i would miss the tone of something more like spruce/cedar on mahogany after awhile.

Thanks for your replies!
Welcome to the AGF, Giovanni! Great to have you here.

Seagulls are very nice guitars and made here in Canada. They are known for great quality and tone at a nice price point. If you're comfortable with them and like them then I say buy one. The important thing that you're doing is that you're trying a bunch of guitars and determining what you like.

Do you have other stores you can look at just to get a bigger sample?
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Old 04-21-2019, 10:10 AM
GiovanniW GiovanniW is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dru Edwards View Post
Welcome to the AGF, Giovanni! Great to have you here.

Seagulls are very nice guitars and made here in Canada. They are known for great quality and tone at a nice price point. If you're comfortable with them and like them then I say buy one. The important thing that you're doing is that you're trying a bunch of guitars and determining what you like.

Do you have other stores you can look at just to get a bigger sample?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dru Edwards View Post
Welcome to the AGF, Giovanni! Great to have you here.

Seagulls are very nice guitars and made here in Canada. They are known for great quality and tone at a nice price point. If you're comfortable with them and like them then I say buy one. The important thing that you're doing is that you're trying a bunch of guitars and determining what you like.

Do you have other stores you can look at just to get a bigger sample?
Thank you!
The stores are in a bigger city about 40min from me. I rarely get the chance and when i do the usually donít have the models om interested in, smaller bodies with wider nut, satin finish neck etc.

I have also looked at the all solid Guild OM 120 mahogany, it ticks all the right boxes and is priced right inbetween the Seagull and Mayson iíve looked at. But from what iíve been able to listen to online the sound doesnít please me as much as the other to.

Iím actually leaning towards getting the chinese Mayson M3/OCE, more my price range (could get my son his next size violin for the rest of the money ). And I think it felt right, low action without any buzz. Nice 1.75 satin finish neck, cutaway, pickup, and the sound was pleasing.
But the Seagull Maritime still havenít completely left my head yet.

Thanks for all the input!
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  #12  
Old 04-21-2019, 10:28 AM
Dru Edwards Dru Edwards is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GiovanniW View Post
Thank you!
The stores are in a bigger city about 40min from me. I rarely get the chance and when i do the usually donít have the models om interested in, smaller bodies with wider nut, satin finish neck etc.

I have also looked at the all solid Guild OM 120 mahogany, it ticks all the right boxes and is priced right inbetween the Seagull and Mayson iíve looked at. But from what iíve been able to listen to online the sound doesnít please me as much as the other to.

Iím actually leaning towards getting the chinese Mayson M3/OCE, more my price range (could get my son his next size violin for the rest of the money ). And I think it felt right, low action without any buzz. Nice 1.75 satin finish neck, cutaway, pickup, and the sound was pleasing.
But the Seagull Maritime still havenít completely left my head yet.

Thanks for all the input!
Do you have any chance to buy used? A used guitar can often be sold for approximately what you bought it for if you decide to get something else later on.
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Old 04-21-2019, 11:16 AM
GiovanniW GiovanniW is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dru Edwards View Post
Do you have any chance to buy used? A used guitar can often be sold for approximately what you bought it for if you decide to get something else later on.
Yes i look everyday for used, been doing that for months. Most guitars on the used market here are either cheap dreads or very expensive martins and similar.
Popped up a simon & patrick woodland pro folk awhile back, thats probably the most interesting, but didnít pull the trigger.
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Old 04-21-2019, 01:16 PM
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TBman TBman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GiovanniW View Post
I have also looked at the all solid Guild OM 120 mahogany, it ticks all the right boxes and is priced right inbetween the Seagull and Mayson i’ve looked at. But from what i’ve been able to listen to online the sound doesn’t please me as much as the other to.
Here's a soundclip of my Guild D-120C. I think this tune was in CGCGCD or a similar tuning:


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Barry


An Daingean {William Coulter}:


Celtic covers - videos

https://soundcloud.com/barry329


Avalon L2-320C, Guild D-55, Guild D-120C, Gibson J-45, Larrivee OM-05, Martin D-16GT

Alvarez ap66sb, Cordoba C5, Seagull Folk, Washburn D-10S

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  #15  
Old 04-21-2019, 01:40 PM
GiovanniW GiovanniW is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TBman View Post
Here's a soundclip of my Guild D-120C. I think this tune was in CGCGCD or a similar tuning:


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Wow thank you! So do you think the guild OM 120 would be a good fit?

I listened to the other clip, Stephen Wake on your Larrivee. Sounded very nice. And the Seagull Maritime concert hall looks lite itís similar in size and woods as your Larrivee. Why would you not want to play celtic on that one?
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