The Acoustic Guitar Forum

Go Back   The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > Other Stringed Instruments

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 02-03-2019, 08:24 PM
Lauren_WarEagle Lauren_WarEagle is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Georgia
Posts: 30
Question Favorite mandolin under $400?

What's your favorite mandolin under $400? I currently have a base-model Fender, nothing fancy. Looking to upgrade so I can incorporate the mandolin into some of my recordings, as my current instrument doesn't stay in tune well. I may try to borrow a mandolin from someone or just end up buying one. All suggestions welcome!

Lauren
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 02-03-2019, 09:31 PM
Steve DeRosa Steve DeRosa is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Staten Island, NY
Posts: 8,614
Default

Loar and Kentucky both have some nice A-style mandos in that price range...
__________________
"I've never wished a man dead, but I have read some obituaries with great pleasure."
- Mark Twain
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 02-04-2019, 12:27 PM
Mandobart Mandobart is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Washington State
Posts: 1,384
Default

See what you can find in a used A model or flattop (aka pancake or army/navy). A $400 new guitar can be ok. A new mandolin for $400 is likely to be a tinny sounding, hard to play mandolin shaped object.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 02-05-2019, 08:12 AM
AgentKooper AgentKooper is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 685
Default Favorite mandolin under $400?

I havenít played enough mandolins to have a favorite, but I just got a new Kentucky KM-270 for that price, and I donít have any complaints. Itís nothing fancy, but seems well-built. All solid wood, bone nut, thin nitro finish. Iím new to the instrument, but it sounds pretty good to me and is fun to play. I think I need to get the nut slots lowered a tad, but other than that it came set up pretty well.
__________________
Blueridge BR-240A
Blueridge BR-163A
Martin CS-00-18
Martin CEO-7
Kentucky KM-270 mandolin
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 02-05-2019, 08:40 AM
Wuchak Wuchak is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 274
Default

Bump up other $100 and you can get an Eastman MD305 which is a true lifetime instrument. At the sub $700 price point you can get a really nice A style or a so-so F style. I went on a hunt for a mando a few years back and was shocked to discover how expensive they are vs. guitars. I lucked into a trade on an Eastman MD315 or I would still be without one.

The Mandolin Store has 78 mandolins and only three are under $400. Only six are under $500.

https://themandolinstore.com/product...ory/mandolins/

Last edited by Wuchak; 02-05-2019 at 08:46 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 02-05-2019, 09:42 AM
Mandobart Mandobart is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Washington State
Posts: 1,384
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wuchak View Post
...I went on a hunt for a mando a few years back and was shocked to discover how expensive they are vs. guitars. I lucked into a trade on an Eastman MD315 or I would still be without one.

The Mandolin Store has 78 mandolins and only three are under $400. Only six are under $500.

https://themandolinstore.com/product...ory/mandolins/
Once again my thoughts on why this is - "What beginners don't like to learn about playing mandolin":

1. There are about 1000 guitars sold for every mandolin sold.
2. Most mandolin family instruments are carved top and carved back - a lot more hours go into building them.
3. Adding 1 and 2 above means that to get the same quality in a mandolin that you can get in a $500 guitar, you need to spend $1000.
4. A cheap mandolin family instrument sounds a lot worse than a cheap guitar.
5. The dual course, high tension strings on a mandolin will laugh at your guitar calluses and slice them away. A good setup on a mandolin isn't just a good idea, its required.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 02-05-2019, 09:48 AM
Mandobart Mandobart is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Washington State
Posts: 1,384
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lauren_WarEagle View Post
What's your favorite mandolin under $400? I currently have a base-model Fender, nothing fancy. Looking to upgrade so I can incorporate the mandolin into some of my recordings, as my current instrument doesn't stay in tune well. I may try to borrow a mandolin from someone or just end up buying one. All suggestions welcome!

Lauren
Probably not worth it on your Fender, BUT a new set of tuners will fix that problem for less $$ than a whole new mando. I am very happy with my Rubner's.
Reply With Quote
Reply

  The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > Other Stringed Instruments

Thread Tools



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:56 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, The Acoustic Guitar Forum
vB Ad Management by =RedTyger=