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Product 513575

Ovation 1861 Standard Balladeer Acoustic-Electric Guitar   

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The Ovation 1861 Standard Balladeer Acoustic-Electric Guitar is meticulously crafted with a bookmatched solid Sitka spruce soundboard mated to a supe...Click To Read More About This Product

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The most traditional Ovation guitar . . . and the most popular USA-made model.

The Ovation 1861 Standard Balladeer Acoustic-Electric Guitar is meticulously crafted with a bookmatched solid Sitka spruce soundboard mated to a super-shallow bowl. 2 pieces of mahogany set with the grain in opposing directions make the neck naturally stable. The Kaman Bar reinforcement makes the neck virtually unwarpable and provides a precise and solid joint with the body. The rosewood fingerboard is a radiused 10" and has 20 hand-finished frets. The OP-30 preamp has 3-band EQ with 400Hz/1kHz center frequency shift, EQ bypass, a preshape circuit that lifts the bass and treble and reduces frequencies below 40Hz, and a tuner.

  • Bookmatched solid Sitka spruce soundboard
  • Super-shallow bowl
  • 2-piece mahogany neck
  • Kaman Bar neck reinforcement
  • 10"-radius rosewood fingerboard
  • 20 hand-finished frets
  • OP-30 preamp with 3-band EQ
  • 400Hz/1kHz center frequency shift selector
  • EQ bypass
  • Preshape circuit lifts bass and treble and reduces frequencies below 40Hz

Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews

(based on 32 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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  • 1 Stars



Reviewed by 32 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


Worth the money, Play before buying.

By Joshua Burke

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

I got this guitar when I first started playing. Its a alright guitar for the price. Nothing special but for the money its worth it. Does not have rich deep sound you'll get from a full body wooden guitar but its a durable guitar and sounds a lot better plugged in than by itself. My neck moved a little since I have had it, (3 years) and the top plastic piece next to the sound hole came loose. Two easy problems to fix. I really like the built in tuner. Not a bad guitar, but I wouldn't buy it again.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)


Roger Bong

By Rogerbgood

from Milwaukee Wisconsin

I have used this guitar now for over a year and I have been absolutely happy with it. I am pleased with its sound and light weight, the only concern that I see is the narrowness of the body does allow it to shift slightly when playing. That can be corrected with a little focus and only is noticable when you are seated.I bought it because I did not want to add any additional wear and tear on my Martins when I play in bars. I found that it competes with the Martin sound and it is an instrument that you need not worry about due to its sturdy structure.

(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


Amazing Guitar

By The Maturity

from Portland, OR

See all my reviews

I have had my Balladeer for 10 years. It still plays like I bought it yesterday. I have recorded two albums with it, I have played live with it million times, and toured with it. The guitar's craftsmanship and tone are brilliant.


Ovation 1861 Standard Balladeer

By Marty B.-Yws6g

from Henderson, KY

See all my reviews

Great guitar for any price.The tonality and resonance of Ovation products simply cannot be beat. This is my second Ovation instrument the first was a Matrix model and lasted through 20 years of almost daily abuse.


Awesome Guitar

By Terps484

from Washington D.C.

See all my reviews

This is a sweet guitar. I played about 30 guitars in my most recent trip to the guitar shop before settling on this one. It was close between this and a Takamine, but the tone of the Ovation when hooked up to a nice acoustic amp was just awesome. The tone was so clear it reminded me of the sound from Dave Matthews acoustic songs. The built in tuner / electronics are in a very cool removable pod in the side to replace the battery. There is also a "pre-shape" option in the equalizer that makes the sound full and bright. The action is also quite good with some light strings. I would highly recommend this to anyone- hands down the best tone and action for the money.


Great instrument!

By TBig5150

from Cape Cod, MA

I am absolutely in love with this guitar. The style, the sound, the quality, there is no word to describe it. It was definitely a great purchase.


What a GUITAR!!!!!!!

By Musician_GirL1127

from Puerto Rico

See all my reviews

This guitar is the best I've ever played. I've owned it for aprox 5 months and I am so happy with it. The sound is so clear and sweet. Mine is the cherryburst finish one and it is really beautiful. The built in tuner makes it easier and faster for me. I love this guitar!!!



By mustang.willie

from Windham, NH

See all my reviews

I've been playing a Martin Shenandoah since 1985 (gotten a bit spoiled, I guess). Thought it was time to restict that baby to home and happened to play an O-Balladeer. That Ovation beat my Martin in brightness, even-tone, playability and just about everything but the warmth wood acquires with age. I can deal with it. In fact within the year, I bought the 12-string version. Same superlatives fit. Both Ovations are quality instruments and I recommend the to anyone!!!


What a guitar should be

By Chill-vkJ9A

from Santa Clara, CA

This guitar is a true masterpiece in everything from the sharp looks to the beautiful sound. The unplugged sound is bright and clear, and the live sound is flawless. It also almost plays like an electric guitar. Cool!


Great live sound, Great action

By foomonkey

from Cleveland, TN

I bought this guitar after shopping around quite a bit. I considered Taylors and Martins. They are really fabulous but I can't justify the cost. I do not play professionally nor do I intend to. I play in a contemporary praise band at church and I wanted something that sounded great amplified, did not have feedback problems, and played great. I got all these things in the Balladeer. It took some getting used as any new guitar does but now I am really loving it. I lowered the bridge by removing one of the two shims. Now it is set up how I like it. It does not have the greatest tone when not amplified but when you plug it up, it sings. For any kind of live performance, you cannot go wrong with this guitar.

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