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Teach Yourself About Blues Guitar – Review of Martin 000X1 | Teach Yourself Guitar Now

Teach Yourself About Blues Guitar – Review of Martin 000X1

Martin 000X1 Guitar Review – A Guitar For The Blues

The Martin 000X1 is offered as a starter in the extensive Martin range and gives quite a punch for an instrument this size. Similar guitars of this size are the Taylor: 110 Larrivée: OM-03 SP and Blueridge BR-43. You’ll read some glowing reviews of the 000X1 on the internet, and you can believe them. A purist may say that it can’t be any good, because the body and neck are not made of wood, but don’t be put off!

First thing, this instrument has no extras. There are side markers to denote fret positions, for example, but not on the fret board itself. The fret board and bridge are fabricated from Morado. The neck is stratabond, which is a kind of thick plywood, and very solid looking. There is no binding, and the spruce sound board has a light satin lacquer finish. The rosette is not inlaid, but is a discrete decal. I like the bare look of the 000X1, but then I’m more interested with playability. The guitar is really comfy to hold due to the small body, and I found it enjoyable to play.

The neck is medium thin and fast, and the body is not too light. I don’t like the feel of a guitar that’s too light. The Martin 000X1 is manufactured in Mexico with the attention to craftsmanship we associate with the name. The width at the nut 1-11/16″, but seems somewhat wider. Obviously, Martin have the know how to make correct use of the width available. There’s enough room to clear the strings with pudgy fingers, but the strings are close enough to allow rapid finger movements. The sound board is braced in the X-series style which Martin is famous for.

The instrument has great tone overall, but it’s the bass sounds that really impress – as you would expect with an instrument from the Martin range. The E and A strings exhibit a power not heard in most other makers guitars. The bass tone is bit ‘fuzzy’, which is great if you want to pick the blues. The dirty sound is a matter of taste, but it suits me just fine. I purchased the AE model, which has a pickup under the saddle, and volume/tone controls cleverly fitted just inside the body near the sound hole.

A Great Starter Blues Guitar

The 000X1 comes into it’s own when finger picking the blues, I found. Heavy picking doesn’t detract from the quality of this marvel. The strings may bounce a bit, but come on, it’s blues! The overall volume is not the loudest, as as you would think from an 000 size body, but that magic sustain must come from somewhere. I picked the bass E and noticed that it rang a long time after. This can give really great effects, like bending the treble strings lightly over that droning bass note.

Hopefully, you found this brief review helpful, specially if you were thinking of purchasing this guitar. Of course, there are less positive features I can think of. For example, the spruce top has a thin veneer of satin finish and can be susceptible to knocks and scratches. On the other hand, the back and sides are probably indestructable. I’ve given mine several pretty heavy bangs with no apparent marks. Some other advice I could give – the look of the back and sides can vary substantially from guitar to guitar, and some are not so attractive, so take the trouble to go and choose one at your local guitar store rather than order from a distance.

My conclusion: The Martin 000X1 is maybe the best 000 size blues guitar you could buy in this low budget range.

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