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Guild GAD-30R Acoustic Design Series Orchestra
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The GAD-30 R from Guild is a stunningly good guitar for a very moderate price. It features the orchestra body style with many quality appointments: S...Click To Read More About This Product
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An upper-class acoustic for a plebeian price.
The GAD-30 R from Guild is a stunningly good guitar for a very moderate price. It features the orchestra body style with many quality appointments: Solid Sitka spruce top and solid Indian rosewood back, sides and bridge. Ebony fingerboard on mahogany neck, bone nut and saddle, wood bindings, mother-of-pearl inlays, tortoise shell pickguard and abalone dot inlays are all features you'd expect at a much higher price. And it includes a Guild hardshell case.
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- Body Style: Orchestra
- Top: Solid Sitka Spruce
- Bracing: Guild Scalloped
- Back: Solid Indian Rosewood
- Sides: Solid Indian Rosewood
- Bridge: Indian Rosewood Pin Bridge
- Neck: 1-Piece Mahogany
- Fretboard: Ebony (12" Radius)
- Width at Nut: 1-3/4"
- No. of Frets: 20
- Scale Length: 25 1/2"
- Hardware: Chrome
- Machine Heads: Grover Sta-Tite Tuners
- Finish: High Gloss (Polyester)
- Dovetail Neck Joint
- Ornate Mother-of-Pearl Position Inlays
- Abalone Side Dot Position Inlays
- Mother-of-Pearl Headstock Logo
- Ebony Bridge Pins with MOP Dots
- Ebony End Pin with MOP Dot
- Bone Nut and Saddle
- Wood Body Bindings
- Tortoise Shell Pickguard
- Back Center Wood Mosaic Inlay
- Case: Includes Deluxe Hardshell Case
- Strings: Replace with Guild L350 Phosphor Bronze,
- p/n 3500350000, Gauges .012, .016, .025, .032, .042, .053
Reviewed by 22 customers
I've had my GAD 30R for several years now, and wanted to share my long-term experience. It is a truly outstanding value at this price point. Make no mistake, this guitar is not in the same class as higher-end Martin and Taylor OMs or Grand Concerts, and posts to the contrary are very misleading. However, you will not find a guitar in its price range in anywhere near this class, and I've played for 20 years and have owned many and played them all. This blows away the Epiphone and other competitors, trust me. I can afford a high end guitar, but as I play mostly classical, I just can't justify the extra couple grand to upgrade, and I really enjoy playing this one. Compared to the Martins and Taylors, the Guild has thinner lower bass and more brittle treble notes. The upper bass and mids are very sweet and rewarding, though, and the guitar plays amazingly smoothly. The guitar sounds a little thin when strummed (get a dread or higher end OM/GC for that) , but it is rich and very resonant when played fingerstle. This is an absolutely beautiful guitar, with the figured maple binding, pretty rosewood, and aging toner on the top. All in all, a great guitar. I'll eventually buy a high-end steel string, but will keep this as an awesome first real guitar for my son.
- Tone machine
I had a 70's Gibson j-50 that I kept in my office to have near me, but it started to get weird on the top and would not stay in tune. It was nice but frustrating. One day I sold it on ebay in about a 15 minutes. I turned around and bought a new one of these GAD 30R Nat. It needed a new nut as the one it came with was mis sawn. After the pro set-up I must say this is an awesome guitar. I have an Gibson J-45, that I use when I need to but I prefer this one. It rings, and is sooo beautiful. I've had it a couple years 5-6 and I have no regrets. Mine was less expensive than they are today, but I still think these are a real bargin.
- Was this a gift?:
I've owned one of these guitars now for a few months. When I bought this guitar I was actually looking for a dreadnaught body style with a super bright sound. This guitar is the exact opposite, but I was struck by its sound, feel, and excellent price, so strongly that I had to have it. This guitar wants to be loved in a tender way. Playing hard on this instrument would be like beating a kitten. Treat it gently and it will purr oh so sweetly; lay into it, and the results will not be pleasant at all. Picking on this instrument sounds great, and finger picking is just heavenly. Looks and construction are great. For the price, you can't go wrong.
So yes, all 5 across the board may be quite a bit biased, but this guitar deserves it. For the price, you really can't do much better, considering what all you get from this guitar. You get ALL solid woods, Grover Sta-Tites, real wood binding, a cool Tweed case, and my dealer threw in a whole bunch of stuff free of charge. It is light, but a durable guitar to say the least. I would love to see Guild put Nitro finishes on these guitars and wonder what kind of tone I'd get if I did. Now however, it's an intimate tone, perfect to accompany singing. It doesn't have the boom of my low end Martin, and that makes me happy actually. This guitar is more even toned to me, and I like the quieter voice. Overall, a VERY nice guitar that would still be a steal at it's retail price. My lust for higher end Taylors, Gibsons and Martins has ended and this probably will be the last acoustic I own.
Got the Antique Burst model from MF (btw MF incorrectly shows an Iced Tea model instead). Owning US-made Martins and custom-made parlors, I was wary of Chinese manufacturing but took a chance based on reviews here and Harmony-Central, as well as satisfaction with a recent MF purchase of the GAD-G212E (which I will review later on). The only flaws I see are some excess brace glue on the inside near the soundhole, and a less than optimal fit (loose) inside the OHSC. There was also some excess treatment on the ebony fretboard (noted in other reviews), easily buffed off with a polishing cloth. And as noted by others, it took about 48 hours to acclimate to my temperature/humidity-controlled studio to settle-in. After a week, I?m pleased with the feel and sounds obtained from fingerstyle, flat-picking and moderate strumming, even with the stock strings and setup. I prefer this 30R?s neck over the modified V on my Martin 00-18V (both are 1-3/4? wide at nut). Hope it holds up over the years.
I have had my GAD-30R for about 6 months now, and I cannot say enough about it. First off, as good as it looks in the pictures, wait until you see it in person. Beautiful workmanship and the quality just shines through it. I took off the crappy strings it comes with and replaced them with some Ernie Ball Earthwoods, and my God. The sounds that comes out of this guitar is heavenly, beautiful tone, deep resonant lows and sweet crystalline highs. All of my buddies dropped their martins and taylors and wanted to play my guitar every chance they got. And of course with the hardwoods used, the tone will only improve with age. The case is very sturdy and high quality, with a retro tweed outside, and nicely plush interior. I cannot emphasize enough what a steal this is; buy it, you will not regret your purchase.
I've been playing guitar for 40 years and own a number of wonderful "high end" acoustics including Martin, Gibson, Taylor and a late 1980's Guild D-45CE. I often play out in crowded and rowdy venues and do not like to bring my expensive guitars - so I'm always in the market for inexpenensive, but good quality acoustic-electric instruments. I pulled this guitar off the wall at a small music store I frequent initially being drawn to it by it's classy and clean appearance. I was very impressed by the sound, feel and appointments (e.g., ebony fret board with beautiful inlay). I immediately assumed this was a high end USA made guitar. When I looked at the price I was blown away!! I then learned it is made in China. A few years ago I would've winced at the thought of a Chinese made guitar - not this time! These guys got it right!! I've also tried some other maker's imported instruments, many of which are excellent values, but this model from Guild far surpasses the others in sound, quality and materials. The one I tried out, and eventually bought, has the Fishman pickup installed. Find one and at least try it out - truly not a bad guitar for the money.
I have owned my Guild GAD 30 for some time now, probably about six months. I have played it for family and friends and around the house. I would say it is a great guitar for the money. The wood is beautiful, the tone is superb for its size and the case is cool too. The only thing I would not do with it is play it at a large venue gig. It just doesn't project well enough for that kind of gig.
I've owned this guitar for about 8 months now. I'm a beginner, but have made great progress with this baby. Even when I mess up, this guitar sounds great. After trying some different string set-ups, I went back to the original strings she came with - GUILD phosphor bronze lights. I am an average sized woman and this guitar is just so comfortable in my arms.
I have played many guitars since from the first time I picked up my mothers in the beginning of the 1960?s and I must say that I ever never be lived that it was possible to by a relay hi end guitar like this to such an attractive price. The sound, the fretboard, the craft is top quality level. After playing it for some time a told my friend and guitar dealer ? this guitar is to cheap should cost many, many dollars more ? he agreed. Especially for a finger-picker this guitar is a dream to and real bargain! I love this guitar!
Say what you want about Chinese-built guitars but this one is a winner. (Wait .... haven't the Chinese been building high-quality string instruments for 2000 years ?) I went over this guitar with the old FT comb and could find nothing wrong. It doesn't have the guts my vintage D-55 has.. but what does ? For the price I wish I could afford two !Oh and the real wood binding...nice touch.
Really excellent performance from this Chinese made guitar. Finger-picking good. Sound is different from my equivalently spec'd OM Taylor 712 spruce and rosewood, but approaches it in quality of response of mids, highs and lows. Difference is that the 712 cost me $2,100. The Taylor is better, but not by that much. This is the best VALUE fingerstyle gloss top OM all solid spruce and rosewood guitar I've ever played.
I can't say enough about this guitar. The action is superb. It has an amazing sound that, in my opinion, is unparalled in the field of acoustic guitars. As soon as I started playing it I couldn't put it down. There is no way that you can go wrong if you decide to purchase this guitar.
I just bought mine very slightly used. I already own a Martin D-16, Gibson J-200, and Guild CO-2. I wanted something like the Guild, but less pricey, that I would feel more comfortable traveling with. I thought this might be very much like it, and I was right. Everything about it made me feel at home immediately. I did change the strings and bridge pins. It came with Extra Light strings, and I put on light Martin "Eric Claptons". The ebony bridge pins were not in good shape, one was split and a couple more were ragged. I put in Tusq. Other than that, this thing is beautifully made, no excess glue inside, I love the ebony fingerboard like my CO-2. I have not done a side-by-side tone comparison, no need. This GAD-30R is an amazing value, plays like guitars costing many times more. I will be happy with this for a long time, and no longer fear the airlines. At least not quite so much.
I have owned several guitars, Martin HD28, Alvarez and Ovation. When I went into my local music store and Played the GAD-30R I was stunned the Little guitar was amazing. The sound, tone was great. The Martin I play has a lot of Boom but this Guitar is so easy to play. I would recommend it for anyone, beginner or professional. This guitar has a great look and to me where it was put together doesn't matter. If you are looking for an awesome guitar that sounds and plays great this is it. Compared it to a high end guitar you will not know the difference. This guitar is well worth the money you won't be disappointed. The only guitar I can compare it to is a 000 Martin.
Ive had a dozen acoustics; Gibsons, Santa Cruz, and Yamaha. I wish I found this beauty years ago. I think it plays as good as any guitar worth 3 or 4 times the price! I gave quality a 9 because I found 1 visual flaw in the maple neck heel cap but its minor. Otherwise the quality of everything is beautiful. Its very easy to play and light enough to tote around. The finish and wood selection are excellent.You'll love this guitar!
I bought one of these for my wife who is just starting to learn. The fretboard is very comfortable. So much in fact, that I often find myself picking this up instead of my Les Paul. It?s just a great guitar with an equally impressive price. I have owned Taylors & Martins and I actually like playing this guitar better. Bottom Line: Buy One. You won?t regret it.
As noted by several reviews here, this is a great acoustic guitar for the price. The materials are very nice, producing a good tone and feel, not to mention it's very pleasing to the eye. I bought the natural wood grain, and I couldn't be more pleased as it looks much better in person than in the photos here. The workmanship is that of a guitar easily twice its price, and it plays just as good as many acoustics I've played in the $1200-1800 range. That said, if you've ever played a top-end Martin or something in that range, this Guild is not that... but you wouldn't expect it to be! It's lightweight and a good size, not producing a booming resonance but a warm, rich sound. As also noted, the case is a vintage looking tweed that was much better than I expected to come with the guitar. Overall, this is a 4.5* instrument when you factor everything in... there are better acoustics out there, but none that even get close to sniffing the price of this little gem.
I own this guitar and I chose the antique burst coloration. This guitar is worth for more than what the price tag is. It is by far a steal and is by far the best acoustic guitar I have ever played. I have played many Taylors and Martins and this guitar is the best by far. GET IT!!
Solid spruce top, Indian rosewood back and sides, mahogany neck, ebony fretboard, bone nut and saddle, beautiful amber sunburst finish, attractive snowflake, diamond and elipse inlays on the fretboard and wood binding on the body - all executed in a surprisingly well put together instrument for the cost. The 1 3/4 inch nut is wide - best for finger picking. As delivered, the action is a bit high but better for fingerpicking - and easier to adjust lower than to adjust low action higher. The neck in depth, though wide, is thin unlike classic "v" necks but very comfortable and solid. Overall, a very nice OOO size guitar - comparable with similar instruments at more than twice the cost. All this and a the tweed case with black plush lining...great value.