I am 53 years old and coming back to learn how to play guitar. I tried to learn in college but the guitar that I tried to learn on was JUNK. It was just not any fun when I played.I spent so much time trying to get it tuned that by the time I got ready to practice I was already mad. One thing I really like about the RD8 is that is will stay in tune. I enjoy country, light rock, ballads and bluegrass music.
I bought the RD8 from Metro Music in Dothan, Alabama. The RD8 cost $239.00 including the hardshell case that Alvarez includes.I also bought an electric tuner that works great. I know that I could have saved a few bucks online but I am from the old school that believes in supporting a local business. Believe me it makes a difference when you have a question or need some help.
The main thing that I LOVE about this guitar is the tone. I shopped around and strummed several different name brands before I picked up the Alvarez. In Metro Music they had a display that had the RD8 and an American made competitor side by side. I wanted to buy the American made guitar but one E chord on the Alvarez and it was like "What is this??" I don't know or care how they get that sound but this puppy SINGS.
I wish they would add a button under the neck for a strap. I understand that I can loop the strap around the upper part of the neck so it is no big deal. I also wish that the one strap button they do provide on the guitar was of higher quality.
Jam up. I feel that this is a guitar that I will use for many years to come. Yes, it is an imported laminated guitar but pick it up and play it and your ears will not beleve that it is not a much more expensive piece. It is also a very pretty guitar and one that you can pull out anywhere and be proud.
Don't think that the guitar you select to learn on does not make a difference. I look forward to playing now and can't wait to hear what I can do next. I would be willing to bet that sales of this unit are cutting into the other more expensive Alvarez guitars. I played several that Metro Music stocks and I swear I thought the RD8 sounded as good or better than most of the other "Name Brand" higher priced models. I realize that this is not a "prestige" guitar but hey, I am not a prestige player!! I am confindent that any limitations I face as I am learning will be player related. In short I have got a lot more guitar than the guitar has got player!!
Purchased at local Retail Guitar Store for $199 w/Hardshell Case
Plays great, Sounds Good, Price is very reasonable
Could have a little lower action, but what do you expect for a $200 guitar w/great case?
Not a solid top guitar so the sound could be a bit better. Have only had it for a week or so, can't comment on long term yet.
I originally purchased a low-end Fender acoustic package (DG8). Primarily because the salesman kept telling me how great the Fender was (it was a solid top). I played the Fender for a couple of days and returned it. I tried to like it, but just couldn't! Traded it for the Alvarez RD8 and have been loving it ever since!
I bought this guitar at the String Shoppe in Columbus, Ohio. I paid 134.99 plus around 80 for a hardshell case. This was my first guitar and I was very excited.
Deep resonating bass tones, a great look and a great price.
The action was painfully high. It seemed like the strings rose an inch off the fretboard around the 12th and higher frets, even after adjusting. The tone was muffled and weak- due to the laminate top, back and sides and heavy lacquer coating. It was hard to fret but when I bought more expensive guitars it was SO easy in comparison- so maybe it was good to learn on.
The fretboard seemed a little rough- almost unfinished. Seemed solid overall though. The first time I changed the string all the plastic pins easy snapped in half. Once I put new pins in they never broke again. very little decoration, no inlays or anything fancy like like.
The bottom line is-- SAVE AN EXTRA $100 BUCKS AND BUY A SOLID TOP! Just because its an Alvarez doesn't mean you'll be happy with it- i wasn't. However, for the price its a good value.