Seagull Flame Maple Artist Series Reviews 5

I purchased the "flame maple" acoustic, new from a small independant dealer as my primary acoustic guitar for $1000AU (about$550US). I needed a recording quality acoustic guitar without the price tag of something like a Martin or Gibson. I tried a selection of ovation and takamine acoustics as well as a number of others but for the price the seagull had the superior feel and tone.

The flame maple is a beautifully presented instrument. It is setup pretty well from the factory and doesn't require much messing about to get a really good tone and action. The guitar isn't encrusted in mother of pearl or tortoise shell - the manufacturer has relied on a quality construction and simplicity.

The model that I bought doesn't have a pick guard and as the finish is a lacquer rather than the usual polyurethane used on most modern guitars, it needs some protection. The lacquer finish is much thinner than polturethane and allows the timber to resonate better - however it will scratch and mark more easily. I replaced the original plastic bridge pins with brass and installed a Fishman under-brige pickup.

It has a solid book matched flame maple back and sides with a solid spruce top. The neck is mahogany with an ebony fretboard. It has a high gloss lacquer finish and is available with a cutaway. Seagull guitars are hand crafted and the quality is very good.

The Flame Maple is worth considering for someone looking for a solid top acoustic but doesn't want to pay big bucks for quality tone and finish. Well worth a look.

Drew rated this unit 5 on 2003-01-14.

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