Taylor 414-MACE Reviews 5

I purchased my guitar at a local full-service music store for $1,568. I bought it because the proprietor put in my hands and said "Here, try this one." Having borrowed a Taylor once and having played Taylors now and then at this store, I was already interested in owning one. Playing this one convinced me to just swallow hard and pony up the dough.

This instrument has the usual Taylor virtues: The playability is top-notch - easily as good as the 800-series I borrowed. It invites me to live in the upper reaches of the fingerboard where I only visited with previous acoustics. The tone is warm, ideal for finger-picking, with acceptable bass for occasional flat-picking. The on-board pre-amp allows massaging the tone when I'm plugged in. The workmanship is flawless. The back and sides of this model are quilted maple and the top spruce with a matte finish over all. It is light, comfortable, and just begs to be picked up and played. As a 400-series, it doesn't have much decoration, but then, neither does a diamond solitaire. Some might call it plain, I call it elegant. Besides, when I'm playing it, I'm not admiring its looks, though others sometimes do.

My only complaint is that the hardshell case is such a close fit there isn't room for songbooks and such. I have to roll up the strap and stuff it in the space left by the cutaway. Seriously; that's my complaint. True, it cost a lot more than I've spent before, but that's to be expected for the quality.

The construction and quality are legendary, first-rate, and superb.

I'm pushing 60 and perform only occasionally, mostly just playing for pleasure, alone or with friends. I expect this to be the last acoustic guitar I buy. Which is fine with me; for my needs, there's nothing more to aspire to.

Steve rated this unit 5 on 2003-12-06.

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