Guild M-240E Trou­ba­dour

This lone con­cert-sized ban­dit is pack­ing a pickup

Total Guitar - - THE GAS STATION - Rob Laing

with bright mids it’s a nat­u­ral voice for folk

Guild’s new Trou­ba­dour model ar­rives at the same time as a solid wood, Cal­i­for­nia-built model, the M-40; al­though both are quite dif­fer­ent in build, they share the same in­spi­ra­tion. The new M-40 is a come­back of sorts un­der a new name for Guild’s old F-20 – a bit of a gem in vin­tage par­lour gui­tar cir­cles from Guild’s folk hey­days of the 60s and 70s. In terms of nut width, the M-240E is ac­tu­ally closer to the old F-20s than the new M-40 – but this gui­tar has some­thing unique: it’s one of the only gui­tars we’ve seen any­where rock­ing a sound­hole pickup out of the box.

The Guild bal­ances the mod­ern with the tra­di­tional; the curves, min­i­mal-striped pur­fling and the sun­burst say old Amer­i­cana, but the satin fin­ish says ‘mod­ern’. The ma­hogany neck shade doesn’t match the body but other than that cos­metic gripe it’s a tidy build with 14:1 ra­tio open-gear tuners that are re­as­sur­ingly smooth. The ac­tion on our test model is very low with the pro­vided gauge .012 D’Ad­dario strings, and it gets a bit buzzy when tun­ing down. The up­side is a fast ac­tion in stan­dard with a ten­sion that’s easy on your dig­its for bends too. This com­bi­na­tion with the gui­tar’s light weight are free­ing com­pared to a larger-bod­ied dread­nought.

With bright mids com­ing through, it’s a nat­u­ral voice for coun­try, folk and blues with the ac­tion and string spac­ing prov­ing good for more del­i­cate fin­ger­style, but light on the darker and richer low-end spec­trum. Open­ing up for strum­ming is the most fun though with the highs car­ry­ing a pleas­ing, slightly phased qual­ity in chord work.

The re­mov­able Tone Boss sound­hole pickup is some­thing tan­gi­bly dif­fer­ent for any­one who is used to on­board piezo sys­tems. As it’s pas­sive, you won’t get the higher out­put as a piezo or ac­tive mag­netic pickup and with no on­board tone con­trols, an ex­ter­nal preamp or acous­tic amp will be needed for those who want more con­trol over their tone. But there’s a pleas­ing round­ness when we plug into our Laney A1+ acous­tic combo on flat 12 o’clock set­tings, without the kind of harsh highs or pla­s­ticky com­pres­sion that can hin­der piez os in the lower bud­get end of the mar­ket. Both Guild and DeAr­mond’s video demos of this gui­tar show it be­ing played with over­drive, and you could even plug it into a stan­dard gui­tar amp if you want added edge. That flex­i­bil­ity on the elec­tro side makes it a gig-ready op­tion for those turned off by piezo pos­si­bil­i­ties.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.