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Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar

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This pre-war inspired "Herringbone" dreadnought has it all. The BR-160's great sound and great looks are just part of what will make it one of the mo...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

Exquisite details and all solid woods make this pre-war inspired guitar an instant classic.

This pre-war inspired "Herringbone" dreadnought has it all. The BR-160's great sound and great looks are just part of what will make it one of the more desirable vintage-style acoustic guitars in production today. It starts with a solid Sitka spruce top and hand-carved parabolic top braces that respect the prewar forward X-pattern. Indian rosewood back and sides add a strong bass to the spruce top's already full sound. The slim mahogany neck is comfortable and features a dovetail neck joint and adjustable truss rod. Beautiful appointments include a Dalmation style pickguard and mother-of-pearl neck and headstock inlays.

Blueridge is an offshoot of the South San Francisco-based Saga Musical Instrument Company. Blueridge specializes in "traditional" guitars that offer today's player vintage styling with modern performance at a level of quality and price that compares favorably to historic guitars. Each instrument is the result of detailed research and is carefully crafted at the Blueridge factory. Consistency is evident throughout, from the fretwork to the intricate inlays that adorn each Blueridge headstock. Case sold separately.

FEATURES
Select, solid Sitka spruce top with hand-carved parabolic top braces in authentic prewar forward X-pattern
Solid Indian rosewood back and sides with center strip of delicate wood marquetry
White body binding with delicate herringbone inlay around top
Slim mahogany neck with dovetail neck joint and adjustable truss rod
Rosewood bridge and bridge plate
Rosewood peghead overlay adorned with a unique mother-of-pearl and abalone design
Saga's exclusive Dalmatian style pickguard
Natural high-gloss finish with aged toner
Accurate vintage-style 14:1 ratio nickel-plated open-back tuners with butterbean-style buttons
Nut and saddle are made from bone
Case sold separately

They still make 'em like they used to. Order today.

SPECIFICATIONS
Nut Width: 1-11/16 inch
Scale Length: 25.6 inch
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Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
BlueridgeHistoric Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar
 
4.5

(based on 17 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (11)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

94%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Good audio (14)
  • Good feel (13)
  • Consistent (12)
  • Fun to play (12)
  • Stays in tune (10)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Practicing (9)
  • Jamming (8)
  • Recording (8)
  • Small venues (5)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (16)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Seriously comparable sound to a Martin D-28

25 years playing virtually solely acoustic blues, bluegrass, fingerstyle and flat picking. I've owned the BR-160 from new for 10 years. It's quality of pitch and tone sounded WAY in excess of...Read complete review

25 years playing virtually solely acoustic blues, bluegrass, fingerstyle and flat picking. I've owned the BR-160 from new for 10 years. It's quality of pitch and tone sounded WAY in excess of it's price tag from new. Now it's incredibly rich too. It's volume is amazing and really has captured the pre-war dreadnought feel very well.

In direct comparison I recently acquired a 35 year old Martin D-28 in perfect condition. Sure, the Blueridge doesn't have the depth of tone of the Martin but it is 25 years younger: but even now it's not far off.

I actually prefer the feel of the slimmer neck of the Blueridge but wish the neck was ebony not rosewood. It's just a little more clunky under the fingers. It is far more comfortable to play near the nut though, but would only recommend you try and see if it's right for you.

Overall, anyone looking for a less expensive guitar that is absolutely guaranteed to knock your socks off, buy one. It is VERY close to the "Martin sound" and only a keen ear can genuinely tell the difference. It definitely holds its own and, in my opinion for what it's worth, pound for pound is a better spruce/rosewood guitar than many other more sought-after brands. Personally there are elements of the BR-160 I prefer in playability to my older and far pricier Martin, and I don't mind if it gets a little knocked about either.

Don't spend your money on a Taylor, cheaper Martin, Guild or Gibson until you've at least played one. And seriously shop around for a well looked-after second-hand one that's been played. It's true, corners may have been cut since the company's inception but the older ones are very well put together.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

best to play them first

Don't know, maybe becasue it's new and needs time to 'break in' but a buddy has an older one of these that sounds fantastic....this once I got replaced after a BR...Read complete review

Don't know, maybe becasue it's new and needs time to 'break in' but a buddy has an older one of these that sounds fantastic....this once I got replaced after a BR 163 developed a crack (warranty)...BOTH of them sound the same in terms of what is LACKING and that seems to be a FULL body richness (the the BR 163 I have is over a year old now), there is a shine to the sound, yes but, and a certain richness, BUT it's lacking in something, seems underdeveloped...loud, yes, but there is something missing from the sound that an older cheap Japanese acoustic I have has that this BR and the other BR I have don't have...time will tell, perhaps, but just how long???? These are definitely functional guitars, for the money probably decent...2.5 stars

Reviewed by 17 customers

Displaying reviews 1-17

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(13 of 13 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Amazing guitar like a D-28

By Plantation Trail picker

from NC

About Me Professional Musician

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Consistent
  • Fun To Play
  • Good Feel
  • Incredible Quality
  • Looks great
  • Price
  • Rich Sound
  • Stays In Tune

Cons

  • Needed To Adjust Action

Best Uses

  • Bluegrass Acoustic Folk
  • Jamming
  • Practicing
  • Recording
  • Small Venues

Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

I'm a die hard Martin guitar player and was very skeptical of a guitar made in china. When I played the pre war blueridge I was pleasantly surprised. This guitar is on par with my D-28, I play the blueridge when I travel and leave my expensive Martin at home. Absolutely blown away at the price of this guitar! Believe the hype, for once it is gonna pay off.

(8 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Seriously comparable sound to a Martin D-28

By David

from Beverley, UK

About Me Experienced

Pros

  • Consistent
  • Fun To Play
  • Good Feel
  • Rich Sound

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Jamming
    • Practicing
    • Recording
    • Small Venues

    Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

    25 years playing virtually solely acoustic blues, bluegrass, fingerstyle and flat picking. I've owned the BR-160 from new for 10 years. It's quality of pitch and tone sounded WAY in excess of it's price tag from new. Now it's incredibly rich too. It's volume is amazing and really has captured the pre-war dreadnought feel very well.

    In direct comparison I recently acquired a 35 year old Martin D-28 in perfect condition. Sure, the Blueridge doesn't have the depth of tone of the Martin but it is 25 years younger: but even now it's not far off.

    I actually prefer the feel of the slimmer neck of the Blueridge but wish the neck was ebony not rosewood. It's just a little more clunky under the fingers. It is far more comfortable to play near the nut though, but would only recommend you try and see if it's right for you.

    Overall, anyone looking for a less expensive guitar that is absolutely guaranteed to knock your socks off, buy one. It is VERY close to the "Martin sound" and only a keen ear can genuinely tell the difference. It definitely holds its own and, in my opinion for what it's worth, pound for pound is a better spruce/rosewood guitar than many other more sought-after brands. Personally there are elements of the BR-160 I prefer in playability to my older and far pricier Martin, and I don't mind if it gets a little knocked about either.

    Don't spend your money on a Taylor, cheaper Martin, Guild or Gibson until you've at least played one. And seriously shop around for a well looked-after second-hand one that's been played. It's true, corners may have been cut since the company's inception but the older ones are very well put together.

    (7 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Believe the hype

    By Jdd18vm

    from North Carolina

    About Me Experienced

    Pros

    • Consistent
    • Fun To Play
    • Good Feel
    • Loud
    • Rich Sound

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Jamming
      • Practicing

      Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

      First in the interest of full disclosure I am living room hack, not a professional by any means. I play for my own amusement and if lucky friends an family (maybe neighbors) get a bit of enjoyment out of it as well. I have a 94' Martin D18vm (vntage model) and was looking for another guitar to leave in alternate tunings. A lot of research and recommendations lead me to the Blueridge BR160. I love the D18 and mahogany tones but always loved and wanted a HD28 and Rosewood. So this seemed ideal (it was somehow on sale for 200$ less than listed above). When it finally showed up after a month on backorder I was NOT disappointed. It was a boomer right out of the box. Even my wife remark how loud it was. Very playable. I dont believe you can beat this guitar for the price. It is every bit as good as all the positive remarks herein. Do not hesitate on this. Can you get a dud? Maybe, but I just played an EC000-28 at Gruhn that I immediately put back on the hanger, so it can happen to Martin too.

      (7 of 16 customers found this review helpful)

       
      3.0

      Not so nice and overpriced

      By PWC

      from Los Angeles, CA

      About Me Experienced

      See all my reviews

      Pros

        Cons

        • Flat Sound
        • Not Consistent

        Best Uses

          Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

          Very disappointed not what I expected. Seemed like a knock off guitar. Should have been sold for half price but even then it would need a trip to the luthier to get it playing good. Sound was inconsitent accross the neck, at times it sounded great and other times flat and bland. I played a Blueridge BR 60 laminate that played and sounded better. This guitar was discontinued at one time and I think these new builds are not in the same league as originals. They are built by saga

          (6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Fantastic for the money!

          By ShrillBill

          from St.Louis Mo

          About Me Experienced

          Pros

          • Consistent
          • Fun To Play
          • Good Feel
          • Rich Sound
          • Stays In Tune

          Cons

          • NONE

          Best Uses

          • Jamming
          • Practicing
          • Recording

          Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

          I bought one of these used when they first hit the market because a friend had told me to watch for them. This guitar has everything you would expect from a much more expensive guitar. Very deep rich sound which carries well but also very defined and delicate when the need arises. Being from China I would imagine there are some consistency problems but I love mine.

          (6 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

           
          3.0

          best to play them first

          By jdog

          from Sask Canada

          About Me Experienced

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Consistent
          • Stays In Tune

          Cons

          • Flat Sound

          Best Uses

            Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

            Don't know, maybe becasue it's new and needs time to 'break in' but a buddy has an older one of these that sounds fantastic....this once I got replaced after a BR 163 developed a crack (warranty)...BOTH of them sound the same in terms of what is LACKING and that seems to be a FULL body richness (the the BR 163 I have is over a year old now), there is a shine to the sound, yes but, and a certain richness, BUT it's lacking in something, seems underdeveloped...loud, yes, but there is something missing from the sound that an older cheap Japanese acoustic I have has that this BR and the other BR I have don't have...time will tell, perhaps, but just how long???? These are definitely functional guitars, for the money probably decent...2.5 stars

            (5 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            Isn't this a Marti.......Oh wait.

            By Mark

            from VA

            About Me Experienced

            See all my reviews

            Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

            I bought this guitar probably 12 years ago when they just came out. It was around 400 back then.

            I can sum up my review very easily. I was in a shop this past weekend playing some acoustic guitars with a friend. I was playing another guitar and not looking as he had picked something up and started playing himself. The sound coming out of that guitar was very familiar. It sounded very, very similar to my Blueridge BR-160...

            It was a Martin HD28.

            That is, after all, what this instrument is supposed to emulate.

            I'm sure if you really listened to every nuance you'd identify the Martin as a much superior instrument. Maybe. Possibly. But at first listen it's the same instrument. I've been a musician for over 20 years. You eventually just get an ear for these things.

            My only gripe is that after 12'ish years the top rose and started to crack a bit, but this was likely my fault leaving it in a hot car while on vacation. I had it professionally set up and lowered the action as low as possible. As long as I take care of it from here on out I see no reason it won't last a lifetime.

            (4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            5 ***** Guitar

            By Billy

            from the whole world over

            About Me Experienced

            Pros

            • Good Feel
            • Rich Sound

            Cons

              Best Uses

                Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

                I've played many hundreds of acoustic guitars over the years. And while not an acoustic player, I regret not having bought a Martin D-35 back in 1977 that I still remember was a "special" instrument at the time. So you can imagine when I picked up the BR-160 at a guitar shop while having another guitar repaired that I bought this one on the spot. Mine is a 2002 and is just fabulous. I'd be willing to bet they've improved these in the last 14 years. I was unfamiliar with Blueridge until my neighbor brought his over a couple days before I bought mine. His is a BR-60 and that is also a great guitar.

                If you have an interest in acoustic guitars, definitely seek these out and play them.

                The XX-XXXA's have Adirondack tops and a wider nut. I haven't played an "A" but I like the slim neck on the non-A guitars.

                (4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Great guitar for the money

                By steve

                from North Georgia

                About Me Experienced

                Pros

                • Consistent
                • Fun To Play
                • Good Feel
                • Rich Sound
                • Stays In Tune

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Jamming
                  • Practicing
                  • Recording

                  Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

                  I bought this guitar after a lot of bluegrass musicians told me what a value they were . I wanted a rosewood dreadnought style guitar for flat picking and this one certainly does it all. The BR 160 was a little brighter and louder than a friends D 28. The action on the neck was great right from the factory. This guitar is a joy to play

                  (4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  4.0

                  Used BR-160 satisfying to play and worth

                  By Steve

                  from Salt Lake City, Utah area.

                  About Me Experienced

                  Pros

                  • Consistent
                  • Fun To Play
                  • Rich Sound
                  • Stays In Tune

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Jamming
                    • Practicing
                    • Recording
                    • Small Venues

                    Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

                    I bought this BR-160 used in a music store for very little.. I have played and enjoyed a BR-180, also purchased used. The 160 sounds as good as my Martin and Takamine instruments, better in some ways, deeper toned and growling when I need that sound. Sustain is good, and it rings like a bell on the upper notes. Small cracks in the back are not terrible but occur at the bottom edge and run with the grain. Cosmetically I can cover them and there doesn't appear to be any significant construction compromise because of this. Can't complain because of the price and the sound is very good. The BR-180 is flawless, after a slight neck tension adjustment. Get one. You'll like it.

                    (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Terrific Guitar

                    By Buck

                    from Virginia

                    About Me Experienced

                    Pros

                    • Consistent
                    • Fun To Play
                    • Good Feel
                    • Rich Sound

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Practicing
                      • Recording

                      Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

                      If you love the sound of a prewar Martin, but don't want to spend a fortune, this is a perfect guitar for you. Guitar is very well made and the tone is wonderful. I highly recommend it.

                      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      You Won't Play Better

                      By Ropajobo

                      from Oklahoma City

                      About Me Experienced

                      See all my reviews

                      Verified Reviewer

                      Pros

                      • Beautiful Classic
                      • Consistent
                      • Fun To Play
                      • Good Feel
                      • Rich Sound
                      • Stays In Tune

                      Cons

                      • You're not Jimmy Page

                      Best Uses

                        Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

                        I been playing for 40 years. I purchased the BR 160 after reading a review which gave it a deserved "Editors Pick" award. Eight years ago I purchased another "Editors Pick" winner the Garrison AG 400 which was a monster value. The BR 160 is the best fretting, sounding and looking guitar you will play under seven bills. It has the mids, punch and vibe to play any type style you want to turn out. The Rain Song has never sounded as sweet and Born on the Bayou made the house smell like gumbo. The BR 160's range is very very simular to a D 28 and its' volume is booming as well as articlate. There was a slight (very small) discoloration near the 12th fret on the neck binding. A small swipe with a black Sharpie and all was good with the world. There were no other flaws I could find. Perfect setup, the open back tuners turned smoothly and held position. I played a 3 hour set with it and could not get enough. G-d only knows how good this will sound when it matures because it sounds like angles jamming now.

                        (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        Great Buy!!!

                        By KevinS

                        from Paducah, ky

                        About Me Experienced

                        See all my reviews

                        Verified Reviewer

                        Pros

                        • Fun To Play
                        • Good Feel
                        • Rich Sound

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                          • Jamming
                          • Practicing
                          • Recording
                          • Small Venues

                          Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

                          What a great sounding guitar. No, it does not sound "as" good as a finely set up Martin - but I did not expect that going in to the purchase. But it is not far off. Out of the box it had a great overall tone, with solid bass tones, with a great midrange and trebles that shined through. I have no doubt that the sound will cut through a group of players. I have played numerous martins, gibbons, even custom collings - and this is not far off. Of course like many of us, I hope to own a d-45, or d-42 sometime in the future. For the cost and sound, I am content in waiting. I don't know that I have ever played a guitar that cost less than a thousand that sounds this good. I am betting it gets even better after a true set up by a luthier.

                          (2 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          4.0

                          I would buy this product again.

                          By Rick

                          from Iowa

                          About Me Experienced

                          See all my reviews

                          Verified Buyer

                          Pros

                          • Consistent
                          • Fun To Play
                          • Good Feel
                          • Rich Sound
                          • Stays In Tune

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                            • Jamming
                            • Practicing
                            • Recording
                            • School Bands
                            • Small Venues

                            Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

                            The fingerboard didn't look like Rosewood and the frets were a bit sharp. I returned it to get another BR 160,but they were sold out so chose the BR 70 this time.

                             
                            4.0

                            Impressive right out of the box

                            By DJP

                            from Littleton, CO

                            About Me Experienced

                            Verified Buyer

                            Pros

                            • Deep Lows & Sweet Highs
                            • Good Feel
                            • Loud
                            • Rich Sound
                            • Stays In Tune

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                                Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

                                Amazed at how this sounded right out of the box. I have never purchased a guitar without playing it first but after all of the highly positive reviews I read on line, I decided to go for it. I am very glad I did. Believe all of the good reviews you read because they are true. I can't wait to see how the sound develops as it opens up over time. I love the feel of the neck, which is a little more narrow, like an electric. It really does sound like a WAY more expensive guitar. Keep in mind that I have only been playing it for a couple of hours though. Time will tell how it holds up. But my first impression is that sit feels very solid, looks great, and sounds fantastic.

                                 
                                5.0

                                WOW!!!

                                By JP

                                from Troy, NY

                                About Me Experienced

                                See all my reviews

                                Ask me a question

                                Verified Buyer

                                Pros

                                • Consistent
                                • Fun To Play
                                • Good Feel
                                • Quality construction
                                • Rich Sound
                                • Stays In Tune

                                Cons

                                  Best Uses

                                  • Playing

                                  Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

                                  I bought this guitar for the wood. I've never owned a rosewood back guitar. I'm simply blown away! This is a beautiful guitar, both in sound and in appearance. The sound is rich and defined. The low end is punchy and clean. The high end is crisp and bright. This guitar sings!! I own another Blueridge and I am incredibly impressed with their build quality. The action and set-up were spot on right out of the box. No lie, I would put this guitar up against any Martin I have played. I own two Gibson acoustics and while I wouldn't give them up, right now I can't put this guitar down. Plus, I really love the darker top finish and speckled pickguard.

                                   
                                  5.0

                                  Best acoustic dreadnought

                                  By Blueridge Blaster

                                  from Boston, MA

                                  About Me Experienced

                                  Pros

                                  • Consistent
                                  • Fun To Play
                                  • Good Feel
                                  • Rich Sound
                                  • Stays In Tune

                                  Cons

                                    Best Uses

                                      Comments about Blueridge Historic Series BR-160 Dreadnought Acoustic Guitar:

                                      Former owner of a Martin HD-28 and a post-war D28. This BR-160 is a superior guitar than those were. The wood its made of is insanely resonant. Can't say enough. It came set up well but had a pro do a better set up anyway. This is now the best acoustic guitar I have ever come across. Also researched to death before buying.

                                      Displaying reviews 1-17

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