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Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar

Item #: 
1273887990839
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Don't let the diminutive size of the Martin Backpacker Acoustic Guitar fool you. A braced, solid tonewood top with a solid mahogany neck, back, and sides gives this cool little guitar a surprisingly b... Click To Read More About This Product

IN STOCK & READY TO SHIP

Gear returned in mint condition. If you're looking for a virtually new instrument in possibly less-than-perfect packaging, this is a great value.
  • Includes 45-Day, No-Hassle Returns
  • Includes full manufacturer's warranty
Gear returned in great condition, with only minor signs of use, such as slight scuffs or pick marks. It looks and plays like new and may be considered an equivalent to display units found in retail stores.
  • Includes 45-Day, No-Hassle Returns
  • Includes full manufacturer's warranty
Price:
$2290.00
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Overview

Don't let the diminutive size of the Martin Backpacker Acoustic Guitar fool you. A braced, solid tonewood top with a solid mahogany neck, back, and sides gives this cool little guitar a surprisingly big projection. Built to withstand the rigors of camping, hiking, and off-road traveling. Includes high-quality chrome-enclosed tuners. A unique bridge on the nylon-string version accepts either plain or ball-end classic strings. Weighs less than 2-1/2 lbs.

FEATURES

Solid top 
Mahogany neck, back, and sides
Enclosed chrome tuners
Lightweight, small size
Pro Coverage
MANUFACTURER'S WARRANTY
One year warranty on Martin Backpackers, Little Martins and Ukuleles. Limited lifetime on other Martin guitars.


GUITAR CENTER'S PRO COVERAGE
Pro Coverage gives you added warranty protection for your gear. Stepping in where the manufacturer's "normal wear and tear" coverage ends, our Pro Coverage program offers you upgraded coverage if your product ever fails Click To Read More About This Product.

Pro Coverage includes
  • Accidental damage protection
  • Expedited repair or replacement
  • Free shipping (for returns or repairs)
  • 100% coverage for commercial use
  • Extended price protection
  • No lemon guarantee
  • Free transfer of coverage to a new owner
  • Repair costs covered for up to five years from date of purchase
  • Repair authorization-toll-free by phone or via the web
  • Customer Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
MartinSteel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar
 
4.1

(based on 33 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (19)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (7)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (3)

91%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Fun to play (10)
  • Good feel (8)
  • Consistent (6)
  • Good audio (6)
  • Stays in tune (5)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Practicing (10)
  • Jamming (5)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (8)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Great for its intended use!

Like most things musical, and most things in general, you must buy this guitar with a view to its use. For what it was designed for, it is great. It plays well,...Read complete review

Like most things musical, and most things in general, you must buy this guitar with a view to its use. For what it was designed for, it is great. It plays well, feels well put together, even smells great. No, it doesn't have a big "D" or "000" sound, but that is not the intent. I haven't traveled with it yet, but I frequently have this around my neck while relaxing in the family room with the children, or in front of the computer looking for tabs, or with my music lesson books (I am teaching myself to play again after 30 years of not playing). It's so darn convenient to have around, even if you never travel. But you can bet that this will be with me for the yearly family trip to Vermont. The exterior has your instrument's serial number - a nice touch So is the soft case and the strap. Feels more expensive than it is. I would definitely buy this again.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Not quite there yet.

This is a guitar whose concept has great potential but is not quite there yet. It does take some getting used to playing and yes you will have to use a strap. It does...Read complete review

This is a guitar whose concept has great potential but is not quite there yet. It does take some getting used to playing and yes you will have to use a strap. It does travel wonderfully and in case you're in a canoe in West Virginia and you hear banjos chasing you it can be an emergency paddle.You might have heard other reviews dissing the barre chord and tinny sound, as well as tuning issues. The first problem is that this guitar is restricted to light guage strings only.The bass strings aren't making hard enough contact with the bridge saddle to be anything but dull and the tiny body doesn't project in the lower registers. The second problem is that the intonation seems to be off. Go anywhere up the neck and forget it. Its so bad that the strings can be perfectly in tune using harmonics or an electronic tuner and it will appear out of tune by using the normal matching method of depressing the strings on the fifth fret. Chords in the first position are barely tolerable but movable forms go out immediatly.Any mild strumming or bending and the light guage strings want to be tuned again.

Reviewed by 33 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(30 of 31 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great for its intended use!

By Ed

from Warren, NJ

Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

Like most things musical, and most things in general, you must buy this guitar with a view to its use. For what it was designed for, it is great. It plays well, feels well put together, even smells great. No, it doesn't have a big "D" or "000" sound, but that is not the intent. I haven't traveled with it yet, but I frequently have this around my neck while relaxing in the family room with the children, or in front of the computer looking for tabs, or with my music lesson books (I am teaching myself to play again after 30 years of not playing). It's so darn convenient to have around, even if you never travel. But you can bet that this will be with me for the yearly family trip to Vermont. The exterior has your instrument's serial number - a nice touch So is the soft case and the strap. Feels more expensive than it is. I would definitely buy this again.

(20 of 24 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I Love To Love You Baby

By fxmusician

from Cleveland ,Ohio

Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

This martin backpacker is awesome, small & portable it's easy to tote. If you are a guitar addict like me, and you need to have a guitar with you at all times or you'll have withdrawl, this is a great solution. It's easy to play & sounds great, it's a martin!!!

(20 of 21 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great Guitar by the pool

By joestro

from Trumbull,Ct

Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

I picked the backpacker up at GC,used,Great deal,I use it by the pool,the small body is great, you dont get all hot while playing,sounds great with Martin extra light string,also good for sitting in front of computer looking up tabs,Very well made,If something happens to it ,I will get another one.I Love it ,play it everyday.

(16 of 18 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Martin Steel String Backpacker

By Pablo

from Glendale, CA

Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

The Martin Backpacker is small and it sounds great. I would take it everywhere I go, but the only problem I have is that you have to use the strap for it not to fall off while playing. You can't just hold and play it because of its small body. But this is great for travel and it sounds awesome.

(16 of 16 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great practice/travel guitar

By JM Gray

from Milwaukee, WI

Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

Very happy with the Martin Backpacker. As others have said, if you keep your expectations realistic and not see this as a full-size guitar, you'll be happy. It took a little time for me to adjust to the shape, but after that I find I pick it up to play more often than my other guitars as it is so portable. I've also grown to to like it's unique sound. All around, very happy with the purchase.

(15 of 16 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Better than expected

By nelson

from Kansas City

Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

When I saw this thing online, I didn't think it would be any good. I went to Guitar Center the other day and saw it in one of those little rooms. Out of curiosity I picked it up and played a little and I was surprised by the quality sound that came out for such a tiny instrument. It definitely had a unique sound, maybe leaning slightly towards bluegrass. It doesn't play well from the lap as it's too small, but plays easily standing. I thought it was very playable and the fretboard was smooth. Long story short I bought it. It came with a bag and strap. I think it was a great deal.

(14 of 14 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Super Convenient and Fun

By Ljevans12

from Seattle, WA. Music capital of the USA

Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

One of the best parts of this guitar is that you can carry it everywhere. It's sturdily built, fun to play, and unique. Not to mention it sounds great and loud for its size. I carry this guitar around at festivals with my harmonica in a neck holder and its so easy to carry and it doesnt get in the way. The only downside is that its a little awkward to play sitting down. But thats why they give you a strap with it!

(12 of 15 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Martin Backpacker

By thedeathlypallor

from New Castle, IN

Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

There are a lot of cool things about this guitar. Its small enough to travel with or just to play in the living room while watching tv. The sound it makes is unique.. its a bit twangy and bright, but its enjoyable to listen to. There are some downsides as well... the body is easily nicked and bruised, and the strings sit a bit low, but they can be adjusted. Overall, it suits its purpose as a travel guitar fairly well, and its nice to have around just for thinking of new song ideas.

(10 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I would buy this guitar again

By J.L.

from New Boston, Texas

About Me Experienced

Pros

  • Consistent
  • Fun To Play
  • Good Feel
  • low action
  • Rich Sound
  • Stays In Tune

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Practicing
    • Small Venues

    Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

    my wife had a stroke was taken to Dallas she is in bad shape and cannot talk we always sing together as I play. sitting here at the hospital after the speach therapist told me to sing songs to her that she knows I did so and she watches me so I went on line found this martin backpacker and was I surprised. good tone fun to play and really sounds surprisingly good my wife perked up and started patting her hand. It's to loud to use a pick in a hospital room so I just use my fingers and even then the nurses come in and comment on my playing they could hear it in the hallway so don't think you loose sound with this little guitar it sounds good. I will have this guitar with me at every camp fire. I like everything about this guitar for it's purpose.

    (8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Fun little guitar...

    By RG

    from Columbia, SC

    Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

    This little thing is sooo cool!!! It comes with the strap and a nice travel bag that could hold some extra T-shirts or underwear on your next vacation. I had already warned my luthier that I would be bringing this to him after I got it. No need... Set up is way better than I expected after reading some of the other reviews. I wanted something that was small, easy to take with me wherever I go and not worry about damaging. This is it!!! Can't wait to take it tailgating, friends parties, by the lake or the beach...

    (7 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Great things come in small packages...!

    By Lynn Heroux

    from Hemet, Ca

    Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

    While I'd prefer to play my D-28 or new DX-175(the new 175th anniversary edition), I have a blast playing this little Backpacker...reading the other reviews, I too agree that it is a little cumbersome to hold - although, when traveling, it beats the alternative of not having a guitar to pass the time...Somehow though, once you stop fighting it, and find the right holding position, it all comes together. Yes, it's better in small spaces like a hotel room, but it sure is easy to tote in your car and keep on-hand. So - buy it, goof around with holding it and PLAY it...!!!

    (6 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

     
    2.0

    Not Too Impressed...

    By Rawker

    from Tacoma, WA

    Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

    Okay, lets start with the downfalls... This guitar is very hard to tune and keep in tune and has become more and more so in the last 5 years. The odd shape of the headstock makes for some extreme angles from the nut to the tuners for both E strings, they bind on the nut and are very hard to bend. The action is high, making it cumbersome to play. I usually use a curved picking stroke to avoid hitting adjacent strings while playing fast chords but with the action so high when I fret a chord the other strings are so high above they get inadvertantly hit even with my curved stroke. The sound is marginal but that was completely expected and a fair trade off for the convenient size. It is very nice for playing in the car or sitting at the computer desk learning a lick real quick. If you're prepared to deal with the tuning and playablity issues it does have it's convenience.

    (5 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Good guitar for the money

    By Matt Penttila

    from Central MA

    Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

    I fell for this guitar when I first saw it. A few things to keep in mind with this particular model. First, the guitar comes with a nice wide nylon and leather strap, and areally useful gig bag with a separate shoulder strap. Word of caution, the case slinged over the shoulder looks like a gun case, so be prepared to be asked what's in the case. Also the finish is very light, you may want to put a few coats of polish on it. The strings need to be changed, the ones that come with it are very light and the E string broke within a few hours of tuning. For playing, you need to have the strap or play it holding it like a ukulele. It is neck heavy, easy to compensate for. Also do not rely on the strap to hold the guitar neck down around your back, the strap is not locking and will come off. Playing standing up is easy with the guitar strap and you can play it sitting down. I bought this for travel, and you can't beat it for size and ease of travel. Definately a fun guitar to play.

    (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    great little guitar, strapped correctly

    By Chuck

    from NJ

    Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

    Attach the strap at the headstock its much better that way (thats why they include the piece of shoe string) It is a great little guitar for what it is and will serve you well. It takes a little getting used to it being so small. Putting the strap at the headstock instead of at the neck / body joint will greatly improve the balance, comfort and playability. All in all I play it a lot, take it everywhere and would replace it with another one if it was damaged or destroyed.

    (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

     
    3.0

    Not quite there yet.

    By rhett kolipano

    from Suffolk,Virginia

    Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

    This is a guitar whose concept has great potential but is not quite there yet. It does take some getting used to playing and yes you will have to use a strap. It does travel wonderfully and in case you're in a canoe in West Virginia and you hear banjos chasing you it can be an emergency paddle.You might have heard other reviews dissing the barre chord and tinny sound, as well as tuning issues. The first problem is that this guitar is restricted to light guage strings only.The bass strings aren't making hard enough contact with the bridge saddle to be anything but dull and the tiny body doesn't project in the lower registers. The second problem is that the intonation seems to be off. Go anywhere up the neck and forget it. Its so bad that the strings can be perfectly in tune using harmonics or an electronic tuner and it will appear out of tune by using the normal matching method of depressing the strings on the fifth fret. Chords in the first position are barely tolerable but movable forms go out immediatly.Any mild strumming or bending and the light guage strings want to be tuned again.

    (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    serves its purpose well

    By Jason

    from undisclosed

    About Me Novice

    See all my reviews

    Pros

    • Consistent
    • Fun To Play
    • Good Feel
    • Rich Sound
    • Stays In Tune

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Practicing
      • Traveling

      Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

      Bought this guitar to take with me when I travel so I can continue to practice while on work trips. Never expected it to sound like a full size acoustic guitar, but it does have a decent sound. I don't understand the complaints about the sound or feel of the guitar. The instrument is made to be practical for those that travel, and it is. Well made and sounds great

      (4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

       
      3.0

      Great portability, small sound, bad tuning

      By Marshall Kinkead

      from Talent, OR

      Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

      I have had this instrument for three years and I have taken it camping, river rafting, on airplanes, and even to China. It has great portability, and I can live with the soft sound. It's actually a plus when you want to play in the airport and not disturb anyone. However, when you play higher on the neck, it is out of tune. It makes for a substandard performance instrument not only because of the small sound, but the out of tune chording on the upper neck. Since I was in high demand as a performer in China (much to my surprise) when I return I'll take one of my better beater guitars. As an aside, if you feel under appreciated as a musician in this country, take your guitar and voice to China. They will love you!

      (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      The perfect jam guitar

      By Nick Tassone

      from Tinley Park, IL

      Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

      If your looking for a guitar just to jam in your room on this is it. It is perfect for bonfires and small get together. Looks great. Plays great. Fret board is next to amazing. The smooth neck allows for seamless transitions between chords. Although it does lack on the low end, it makes up for it with the sweet rich sound throughout.

      (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      please understand what your buying!!!!!!

      By Nathan Mendez

      from cincinnati, ohio

      Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

      this is a great travel guitar. if you are a beginner I would recommend a different guitar. if standing with a strap this guitar rocks. when sitting it is very wierd until you figure how to hold it. tone is better than what i thought it would be. the biggest thing i notice everytime i pick it up is how well it is made. even though it is a low price Martin uses high quality materials. If you have other guitars I would recommenf this but for a first guitar no.

      (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Rating as a travel guitar

      By Steve Walton

      from Colwyn, PA.

      Comments about Martin Steel-String Backpacker Acoustic Guitar:

      Years ago I owned one of the first Backpackers, and after a few years of fun playing, sold it. As I have now started traveling abroad, I found the need for a guitar to take on board with me, because I refuse to put my good Taylor in the luggage compartment of a jet. Last year, I bought a Baby Taylor and it turned out to be rather bulky to carry with me . This year, I bought an updated BACKPACKER, and Kiddies, I am VERY pleased with it! The fingerboard and bridge now, has "Richlite" instead of rosewood. A tusq saddle and simulated bone nut adds to my pleasure. The tuning head is larger, which makes it a lot easier to tune up. The sound is great for a travel guitar. The strap, which comes with it, deffinatly helps to hold it. I really liked my old Backpacker, but this new and improved version has made me grade it with 5 stars. This will be going to Jamaica with me this year. Don't get me wrong, the Baby Taylor is a great guitar, but the new BACKPACKER is 100% over the first few designs and will make my travel a lot better. This is the 5th guitar I bought from the Wilmington, Delaware, Guitar Center. Thanks guys!!!

      Displaying reviews 1-20

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