Ramirez 2CWE Classical Electric Reviews
I bought this guitar from another guitarist who wanted to replace it with a steel string acoustic guitar. He had purchased it on a whim while vacationing in Spain.I basically got this guitar for about half price. I paid $1000. Typically this instrument sells for ~$1800. So I was very lucky!
This guitar is really the best of all the classical/electric guitars that I was able to get my hands on. I live in a small rural town about hour away from the Washington D.C. metropolitan area so that limited my access somewhat. Other guitars that I tried included Cordoba, Yamaha, Rodriquez, Taylor. Takimini makes a high end classical electric which I did not get to try out. The Ramirez played significantly better than the other models mentioned above. The action is really very nice and goes a long ways towards reducing muscle fatigue that has been a personal problem for me throughout my years as a classical guitarist. I broke my wrist/arm when I was 8 years old. I don't know if that has made fatigue a greater problem for me than other guitarist or not but it certainly has been a major concern for me. I tried two Rodriguez guitars but they were rather awkward to play and their action reminded me of something very close to the student model Yamaha guitar that I have owned for years and use mainly for camping trips etc. I really considered and in fact actually bought a Rodriguez but the jack came loose the day after I bought the instrument. I returned the instrument and again bought a second Rodriquez. It too suffered the same fate. I returned it as well and decided to look for something different. The Ramirez has a slightly smaller neck width than your typical classical guitar. Since I intended to use the instrument mainly for classical music I was afraid that the smaller width (the Ramirez 2CWE is 50 mm, most other classical guitars I own are 52 mm) would create problems with my tecnique. This was something that really almost prevented me from even considering buying the instrument. Fortunately I did give it a try and I am very happy I did so. The smaller width may actually be part of the reason it plays so easily. For many classical guitarist this may in fact be a real issue. All I can say is that it has not been for me. I have no trouble switching between this instrument and other classical guitars I own which have the traditional width neck. Also the difference is very slight only two mm or is it cm.......????? (oh well, just another American who never really caught on to the metric system. The Ramirez width is still much fatter than any electric or acoustic guitar I have played. So there is plenty of room to accomodate all those monster chord positions which many classical guitar pieces require.
The pick-ups are top of the line and were certainly better than any of the others I have tried but there may be other I don't models out there that I don't know of.
The instrument is of course quite beautiful as every classical guitar should be. The finish and woods are very nice. Basically I am extremely pleased with this purchase and would recommend this instrument to anyone looking for a classical guitar with the added flexibiliy afforded by the fact that one can play the instrument through an amplifier. This setup also reduces feedback and bleeding mics when recording live, which was another important concern for me.
Although I love this guitar and am thoroughly happy with my purchase, I do feel that one has to realize that as good as this instrument is it doesn't sound as good as a traditional classical guitar. The pickups are excellent but they are not capable of reproducing the true sound of a classical guitar. There is still a slight loss in quality that I can't really describe but I know it when I hear it. But this difference is very slight. I have found many people in the audiences I have played for are just really wowed by the sound. One thing I have discovered is that by setting the amp volume levels fairly low one can really reduce this effect to where it really isn't noticeable. However, there are times when you will need the volume .........like the jam session with the rock drummer. But in situations like that it probably doesn't matter as much. There is a nice web page out there that explains how to maximize the volume without getting feedback. Do a search for Fishman pickups and you should be able to locate it. Basically it takes you through a ~10 step process that really eliminates feedback. I have for the sake for experimentation had the instrument up so loud that ojects in my music studio were vibrating and adding all kinds of unwanted sound effects. So this is an instrument that can play loud. I have also played out in jazz type gigs with drummers and keyboards and horn players and this instrument can definitely keep you in the mix volume wise.
I have found no defects in this instrument to date. Tuning pegs, action, everything is perfect. The intonation is the best on any classical guitar I have owned. I am used to there being some intonation problems on classical guitars, so that was a welcomed discovery!
Great instrument! Highly recommended for classical guitarists who need extra volume and don't want to use traditional mics. Basically resolves the feedback and volume issues experienced when trying to mic a traditional instrument. The instrument is beautiful to look at, plays smoothly and easily, and sounds very very very close to the real thing. I love it! William Leigh
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