Esteban $199 Model with Case and Amp Reviews 3

Was looking for a cheap acoustic guitar with a pickup. For the price -- case, guitar, and small amp -- not bad ?? I watched the infomercial and ordered the guitar. Problem 1: The pick-up should be attached to the guitar using the adhesive based plastic sensor. That was loose when I got it and was dangling inside the guitar. No problem. Just loosened the strings and stuck the thing to the front underside of the guitar through the sound hole. Problem 2: The guitar would make a cracking sound when handled. The guitar back was inadequately gluded together. Solution -- took off the strings, applied some glue to the joint, applied some pressure, and problem solved. Problem 3: Strings too high above the finger board. Biggest problem for beginners. The farther the strings are from the finger board -- the harder it is to play. No wonder beginners quit !! You need the forearm of a body builder to play a bar chord. Solution -- removed the bridge, and sanded it down about 3/16 an inch. Also deepen the grooves on the neck with sand paper a little at a time until I got the strings closer to the neck. Got a little buzzing on the high E string so I sanded down two frets until the buzz was gone. Seems like a lot of trouble -- but the guitar now plays like a much better guitar. Problem 3: Tuners ... By the way .. solving problem 2 reduced the strain on the tuners but the tuners quickly loosen and the guitar goes out of tune after 30 minutes of play. Big problem is as I play the guitar more and more the tuners seem to weaken more and more -- leaving the guitar out of tune faster. Overall - attractive guitar but definitely needs adjustment. Sound is what I expected for a beginner guitar -- not bad. Amp is average. Low volume -- plays good. Plugged in my Les Paul -- the sound is Ok. Liked the idea of a small amp -- tired of lugging the Crate around. We'll -- After all is said and done -- it has served it's purpose -- a cheap guitar with a decent case and decent amp to travel with for practice. If it's banged up -- who cares. Better than trying to carry around an expensive Les Paul. May replace the tuners eventually. Tired of the frequent tunnings. If you plan to seriously pursue the study of the guitar -- don't buy it. The adjustments I made have made it playable but I have been playing for a few years and know how to modify a guitar to some degree. Spend a little more money and get something better. Ernie

rated this unit 3 on 2004-08-24.

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