The Martin D-18 is one of the most iconic guitars around. Renowned for it's simplicity and beautiful tone, it's a highly popular guitar for all sorts of musicians. It features a dreadnought design, made to project it's power and volume, an ebony fretboard, sitka spruce top and a mahogany back and side pieces. The combination of woods gives it the perfect balance between bright and dark, and that balance is truly beautiful. The D-18 can go from a quiet acoustic whisper to a booming powerful acoustic guitar. It's craftsmanship and build quality are impeccable, and this guitar deserves all the praise it gets.
The guitar is a great play, very comfortable to play and hold. It sits nicely in the lap, and feels amazing under your fingers. It holds tune very well, and always sounds nice. The range of sound you can squeeze from this instrument is phenomenal, and it could work perfectly as an intimate singer and guitar type, or lead a chorus of singers. The design is simple, nothing flashy, nothing extra. It's the basics done perfectly.
The guitar strikes a perfect and exact balance between dark and bright. It's sound is warm and relaxed, but never mushy or undefined. The porous mahogany back and sides give it the deep bass and messy warmth, while the sitka spruce top and cross bracing keep things together, snappy and defined. The guitar rings with a beautiful tone, and sounds amazing whether you play fingerstyle like Tommy Emanuel, or strumming the chords of a pop song, or quick flatpicking bluegrass. Every studio should have one of these, and so should every solo act acoustic musician. The D-18 has such a great and versatile sound and can be heard on hundreds of famous recordings.
Overall, this guitar was worth everything I paid for it and more. I've owned lots of acoustic guitars, and this is one I will never let go. Everything about this guitar rocks. It sounds great, feels great and looks great. It's a simple, elegant powerhouse, and a staple of the acoustic musician's diet.
I bought this guitar on a whim about 3 months ago. I have been playing accoustic guitars for several years and thought I'd try a Martin. Good thing I did. Absolutely the best sounding guitar I've ever tried. Warm tones and as loud as I want it to be.
I love the sound.
This is the low end on the frills scale, but I didn't buy it for the embellishments, I bought it for the sound, and that it provides.
Spruce top with mahogony sides.
I'd buy this guitar over and over and would recommend it to others.
I inherited this guitar from my guitar pickin Uncle who recently passed. I figure he is up there pickin and grinnin with Chet and the boys.
This is the best built acoustic guitar I have ever seen. There are no flaws in the material or the construction. It plays like a dream and has the most wonderful sound you ever heard, and great sustain. It has awsome lows and brilliant highs. A Picker's dream.
The only way I could ever afford this guitar is the way I got it. It isn't affordable by the common old plucker like me. I would have to say the price is the one thing I don't like.
This guitar is hand built with the very best wood and the best components. It is quality throughtout. This is the guitar that all the others try to copy. It is at the very top of the guitar pecking order. Nothing better anywhere. If you were to list all the guitars from the best to the worst, this guitar would be at the top of the list.
If you want the best, this is it. But be ready to pay the price. unless you have a rich uncle like me....
MODEL Martin D-18
CONSTRUCTION: Mahogany Blocks/Dovetail Neck Joint
BODY SIZE: D-14 Fret
TOP: Solid Sitka Spruce
ROSETTE: Style 18
TOP BRACING PATTERN: Standard ''X'' Scalloped, Forward Shifted
TOP BRACES: Solid Sitka Spruce 5/16''
BACK MATERIAL: Solid Genuine Mahogany
BACK PURFLING: Style 18
SIDE MATERIAL: Solid Genuine Mahogany
ENDPIECE: Delmar Tortoise Color
ENDPIECE INLAY: none
BINDING: Tortoise Color
TOP INLAY STYLE: Multiple Black/White Boltaron
SIDE INLAY: none
BACK INLAY: none
NECK MATERIAL: Select Hardwood
NECK SHAPE: Modified Low Oval Profile w/ Performing Artist Taper
NUT MATERIAL: Bone
HEADSTOCK: Solid/Square Taper
HEADPLATE: Solid East Indian Rosewood
HEELCAP: Tortoise Color
FINGERBOARD MATERIAL: Solid Black Ebony
SCALE LENGTH: 25.4''
# OF FRETS CLEAR: 14
# OF FRETS TOTAL: 20
FINGERBOARD WIDTH AT NUT: 1-3/4''
FINGERBOARD WIDTH AT 12TH FRET: 2-1/8''
FINGERBOARD POSITION INLAYS: Old Style 18
FINGERBOARD BINDING: none
FINISH BACK & SIDES: Polished Gloss
FINISH TOP: Polished Gloss w/ Aging Toner; Sunburst available at additional cost.
FINISH NECK: Satin
BRIDGE MATERIAL: Solid Black Ebony
BRIDGE STYLE: 1930's Style Belly w/ Drop-In Saddle
BRIDGE STRING SPACING: 2-3/16''
SADDLE: 16'' Radius/Compensated/Bone
TUNING MACHINES: Nickel Open-Geared w/ Butterbean Knobs
RECOMMENDED STRINGS: Martin SP Lifespan Phosphor Bronze Medium Gauge (MSP7200)
BRIDGE & END PINS: Black
PICKGUARD: Delmar Tortoise Color
CASE: 445 Hardshell
INTERIOR LABEL: none
Very cool and classic martin acoustic made in Nazareth, PA. Mahogany back and sides as opposed to it's 'bigger brother' the 28, which is rosewood.
Martin guitars are one of if not the most traditional style guitars out there for acoustics. Especially when it's regarding the D-18.
Again this always differs with every player but I'll try to break it down to make things simpler. This is basically a Martin D28 with mahogany, what's the difference between rosewood and mahogany you ask? Rosewood has a very rich and thick low midrange, while mahogany isn't brighter per se, but it is definitely more neutral sounding in the sense that there is no enhanced low midrange like you'd usually get from rosewood. And so of course, depending on the player, some might find rosewood to be too boomy sounding and mahogany perfectly tight and not too boomy at all.
So of course this depends on the player, although in the end, majority of guitar players do usually prefer rosewood over mahogany, but again the option is always there to choose a different type of tone from the lot. I think they both sound great in their own right, especially if one is mainly a finger picker but wants projection and thus needs a dreadnought-sized guitar but doesn't want overpowering low midrange so that each note comes out, a guitar like the D18 with mahogany back and sides might just do the trick.
Great guitar for the price. Martin guitars are always top notch. Though again, it's mainly just a big difference between rosewood and mahogany and you have to be able to play them both side by side to hear the difference so you know what you're getting into. There's no modifying the tone on acoustic guitars (except different strings) so you should choose wisely. It completely depends on what type of music you'd want to play and how versatile a guitar you'd need to be able to play the type of style or styles you play.
Otherwise Martin build quality is always top notch so you have that peace of mind with the guitar and the only decision left to decide is which tone is right for you.