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Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar   

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Don't let the diminutive size of the Martin Backpacker Acoustic Guitar fool you. A braced, solid tonewood top with a solid mahogany neck, back, and s...Click To Read More About This Product

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  • Price:
    $1990.00
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OVERVIEW

Built for portable durability . . . and great sound.

Don't let the diminutive size of the Martin Backpacker Acoustic Guitar fool you. A braced, solid tonewood top with a solid mahogany neck, back, and sides gives this cool little guitar a surprisingly big projection. Built to withstand the rigors of camping, hiking, and off-road traveling. Includes high-quality chrome-enclosed tuners. Weighs less than 2-1/2 lb.

FEATURES
  • Solid top
  • Mahogany neck, back, and sides
  • Enclosed chrome tuners

Who says you can't take it with you? Put it in the cart.

Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
MartinSteel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar
 
4.3

(based on 95 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (57)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (23)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (6)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (5)

87%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Fun to play (24)
  • Good feel (18)
  • Stays in tune (17)
  • Consistent (13)
  • Good audio (10)

Cons

  • Flat sound (3)

Best Uses

  • Practicing (21)
  • Jamming (10)
  • Small venues (3)
  • Travel (3)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (25), Novice (6), Professional musician (5)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

A Gypsies Must

Buy a bone nut, and use your head. This little guy is a talk box. It can and will teach you more comfortable ways to play and find your voice in guitar. The...Read complete review

Buy a bone nut, and use your head. This little guy is a talk box. It can and will teach you more comfortable ways to play and find your voice in guitar. The stock specs are a quirky at best but this is an impressively durable and affordable 6 string. The gig bag is a joke but it's rarely necessary. I play with a 3 peice in the the rockies and with a golden gate thumbpick there's not stopping the cigar box sound. Not only has it lasted the odd weather changes out here, but with thick bronze strings it sounds great. It's stayed true to intonation, even after 2 years now of Django thumping and Grisman grinding. I love it. Best guitar that ever happened to me..

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

...give it a chance...

I like the full fat neck and I think it sounds interesting. It's different. I dont care for the high action and it is a little too top heavy, but that's what the...Read complete review

I like the full fat neck and I think it sounds interesting. It's different. I dont care for the high action and it is a little too top heavy, but that's what the strap is for I guess.
This thing is funny," I read the 50/50 reviews and decided to give it a try. Took it out of the box and I was like ""What?!?"" But I decided to give it a chance. Grab a cold beer from the fridge", take your backpacker and go outside on the back porch. Yeah, it's top heavy. Yeah, you've got to use the strap. Yeah, the action is a little high. No, it doesn't sound like a full sized guitar, but for some reason I love it. It was easy to get used to. You rest your arm on the back to balance it out. It's actually quite comfortable to play once you get used to it. I've got to say, it's been a blast so far. I find myself plucking on it all day. Took it work for lunch time shows.

Reviewed by 95 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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5.0

Had mine for years, great instrument

By Tommy2

from Juneau Alaska

About Me Novice

Pros

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

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Jamming
    • Practicing

    Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

    I bought a backpacker because I was stationed on a boat with very little space for personal belongings. The shape makes it a little awkward to play at first, but I just choked up the strap a bit and it played wonderfully. It's not the loudest, but it'd be silly to expect that with the shape. The sound it produces is rrich however, and it plays as well as any full size 300 range guitar I've played. This thing is also super durable. It's traveled with me through several tours out at sea, hikes up Alaskan mountains, under then seat on cross country trips, various camping trips and eventually turned to my primary guitar. If you travel a lot, this guitar really is a must have. I'm no professional musician, never aspired to be. Just enjoy playing, hanging out and learning from those better than me. For that purpose, there isn't a better guitar I've found.

     
    2.0

    Probably wouldn't buy again

    By The mom

    from PA

    About Me Experienced

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

      Cons

      • Requires Constant Tuning

      Best Uses

        Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

        Purchased this as a Christmas gift for our talented and experienced son. He thought it might be good to take camping. By the end of the first day, however, he was frustrated that it wouldn't keep a tune even long enough to get through a piece of music. The frustration outweighed the benefit of it being small and portable.

         
        4.0

        Great for what it is

        By James

        from Salt Lake City

        About Me Novice

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Consistent
        • Fun To Play

        Cons

        • Flat Sound

        Best Uses

        • Practicing

        Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

        It's perfect for carrying around and just practicing when you're on the train or walking around on campus. It's not a full sized guitar obviously, so it sounds a little tinny. It's pretty much what you would expect by just looking at it. Some folks say the action is a bit too high, but I really haven't had a problem playing it so far. Notes higher up the neck do sound a bit dull, but again I just use it for practice on the go.

         
        4.0

        Good for what it is

        By KTrock

        from Hamilton, NJ

        About Me Novice

        Pros

        • Consistent
        • Stays In Tune

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Practicing

          Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

          Use it when I'm on the road. Fits in an airline overhead bin. Don't let someone jam a suitcase into it or anything; though from what I'm reading here, it's pretty durable, may even be able to take that.

          One thing I noticed is that the neck isn't quite the same size as that of a standard acoustic. I think mine is an auditorium style.

          (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Awesome tiny guitar, great for traveling

          By Trevor the Forever

          from Berea, KY

          About Me Experienced

          Pros

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

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Jamming

            Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

            This is an amazing little guitar. I got it this past Christmas and I have thoroughly enjoyed playing with it every now and then. The size makes it very easy to put on and take off, which is nice for me because I always like having a strap on. It's so fun to play on, and this little thing has some great sound.

            More on sound: This thing has the classic Martin ring to it, it's just proportional to size. As people have said, it does sound like a dead ukulele when the strings get old, but while the strings are good it sounds absolutely amazing. It truly sounds like a Martin, albeit with a lot less fullness of tone. It rings and shimmers quite nicely, in my opinion. You just can't expect it to have the resonance and volume of a full bodied guitar. That's not how sound works.

            It really is durable, too. I just took it on a road trip (and it ended up being small enough to keep behind the truck seats AND PLAY IT in the passenger seat without disturbing the driver; this was a huge plus on the long drives) and I managed to drop it twice from about two feet off the ground onto pavement WITH TWO PAIRS OF MARCHING STICKS IN THE GIG BAG and there isn't a single scratch on it.

            For this price you can't go wrong. Also, don't get this as a first guitar. It plays awkwardly and sits awkwardly. It was made for portability and durability, NOT as a cheap guitar that's small and easy to learn on. It's quite the opposite.

             
            5.0

            Just what my husband was looking for

            By Maryinredding

            from Redding, CA

            About Me Experienced

            See all my reviews

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Fun To Play
            • Good Feel

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Practicing

              Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

              This is a Christmas present for my husband. When we travel in our RV a regular guitar takes up too much space. This little guy will let him play but not take up a lot of room. It comes with it's own bag so he can actually hang it in the closet. A great buy.

              (3 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

               
              2.0

              Get something else

              By Drew

              from Flower Town

              See all my reviews

              Ask me a question

              Pros

                Cons

                • Flat Sound

                Best Uses

                  Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

                  You are traveling and a guitar is too big. Problem is, this thing does not sound or play like a real guitar. The fretboard is pretty true to life, but the body feels so weird, and the size is wrong. It also sounds horrible. I mean, really bad.

                  Much better to my mind is a baritone ukulele. They are about the same size, are cheaper, play better and sound much better. There's only four strings, but they are identical to guitar tuning. A regular uke is even easier to carry, but a baritone uke to me is just as close to a regular guitar and much more satisfying.

                  (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  4.0

                  Would not buy personally

                  By DaveBob

                  from Asheville, NC

                  About Me Experienced

                  See all my reviews

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Consistent
                  • Stays In Tune

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Practicing

                    Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

                    If you are looking for smallest travel guitar able to fit into overhead on airplane, current options are this guitar or the Washburn Rover. Backpacker guitar is of excellent quality, very good finish, tuners. Neck is chunky, but I got used to it, since I play old Gibsons. Compared to Washburn Rover, sound is much better. Soft gig bag is marginal. Biggest complaint is body design. Very narrow and hard to keep hold of. Martin could fix this with wider body, potentially improve sound. This guitar is better choice than Rover, IMO. Still I couldn't get used to it enough to play for any length of time. Others might get used to it

                    (1 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    1.0

                    Worst Sounding Guitar I've Ever Heard

                    By Chomper

                    from Seattle

                    About Me Novice

                    Pros

                      Cons

                      • Tinny Sound

                      Best Uses

                        Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

                        Sounds like a cheap souvenir ukulele like you get at the airport in Hawaii. Seriously the worst sounding instrument I have ever heard. Played it for 5 minutes and sent it back. I bought an Alvarez MSD1 instead and the difference is astounding.

                        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        4.0

                        Great for what it is

                        By Deanvandamme

                        from nashville, tn

                        About Me Experienced

                        See all my reviews

                        Pros

                        • Consistent
                        • Fun To Play
                        • Great For The Price

                        Cons

                        • Flat Sound

                        Best Uses

                        • Practicing

                        Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

                        As far as this goes it is great for what it is. If you want a guitar that's portable, inexpensive and performs well, you'll be happy. Couple of points about this instrument is the neck is pretty thick so if you can't live with that you may be disappointed. Second, the overall tone is not as good as a full sized acoustic. As long as you don't expect these guitars to be more than what they are, you'll be happy. It has great value for the money!

                        Displaying reviews 1-10

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