Written on: 14/09/2004 by matnicholls (2 reviews written)
Traditional good looks
Built like a tank
Great value for money
No fitted pickup
Guild D-25 - In summer 2002 I decided that I needed an acoustic guitar I could commit to. Having saved up my money, I went out and played a load of guitars - Taylors, Martins, Gibsons, etc. On price, sound and build quality, the Guild D-25 was the overwhelming winner.
The D-25 has a solid spruce top with mahogany back and sides, arched-back construction and rosewood fingerboard with dot inlays. My model is finished in a natural hig- gloss finish and has stock Guild tuners. No electronics to speak of, although a factory-fitted pickup is an option.
I bought the guitar as New Old Stock. It was built at the old Westerly, Rhode Island Guild factory in 1996 before the company was taken over by Fender. I paid £699 and the guitar came with a Guild hard case.
So what's it like? Well, firstly and most importantly - sound. It sounds fantastic and as it has opened up these past two years it has only improved. The sound is rich with full bass (not at the expense of crisp treble, though) and with its arched-back construction, very LOUD! Some criticse it as boomy and claim to have had trouble recording it, but with careful microphone placement I find it pretty easy to get a sound that sits well in a mix.
Action and intonation is spot on, as is to be expected of a new guitar. This is a guitar that you just want to pick up and play. The worst I can say is that its wide - though not abnormally so - neck may present a problem for those with very small fingers.
Build quality has traditionally been Guild's strength and they don't disappoint here. This thing is heavily braced, has a heavy-duty finish and quality fittings. Tuners will keep it in tune for years. In short, it's built like a tank. It's not impossible to damage a Guild - but you have to try VERY hard.
Where the Guild wins out over similarly-priced guitars from Martin and Taylor is in the quality feel of the instrument. Whilst the Martins and the Taylors feel like entry-level instruments, the Guild most certainly doesn't. It's a quality instrument, hand-made in the USA by a quality manufacturer.
To sum up: The D-25 is a great guitar, particularly when you consider the price - if you can find a used example, they are the bargain of the century. The sound is great and the fit and finish have a quality feel. Everyone who has ever played this guitar has fallen in love with it, and my positive experience with this model has led me to acquire 2 more Guild acoustics (a 1973 D-25M and 1997 D4-12). Highly recommended.
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