The Loar's hand-carved, polyurethane-finished archtop cutaway guitar offers an excellent option for traditional jazz guitarists who want to make the classic archtop sound heard clearly for ensemble pl... Read More
The Loar's hand-carved, polyurethane-finished archtop cutaway guitar offers an excellent option for traditional jazz guitarists who want to make the classic archtop sound heard clearly for ensemble playing. The Kent Armstrong floating pickup amplifies the sweet natural tone of the hand-carved spruce top, while the Florentine cutaway allows unrestricted access to the upper frets, making the Loar LH-350 acoustic guitar perfect for either soloing or accompaniment.
The archtop cutaway Loar guitar is assembled with a solid hand carved spruce top and maple back, sides, and neck. The guitar's bone nut and compensated adjustable ebony bridge let the sound of the select tonewoods resonate clearly, and the bound rosewood fretboard is both beautiful and durable. The Loar LH-350 acoustic guitar's bound pickguard with a single volume knob adds to the vintage look and feel. The archtop is finished with a meticulously inlaid mother-of-pearl "Fleur-de-Lys" headstock design and a polyurethane tobacco sunburst finish to stay true to classic design and style. Case sold separately.
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Reviewed by 1 customer
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Comments about The Loar LH-350 Archtop Cutaway Hollowbody Guitar:
I have owned this guitar less than two weeks, but I am very happy with it, just like 2 of the 3 reviewers before me. I was looking for an archtop jazz box that could also be played acoustically, and this fits the bill, though I must admit that I enjoy it more when I play it plugged into an amp. My main focus was to get an archtop with a jazz sound. It was difficult to find another archtop in this price range and I searched for a while. I narrowed my search to this guitar, the Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin and the Gretsch G100CE. The fact that this guitar has a solid carved top was important because other guitars, like the Gretsch, are laminate. Even the D'Angelico Excel, which is $400 more, is laminate. Some folks say that the top is supposed to be laminate on an archtop, so there are pros and cons, and I am not criticizing laminate guitars, but for the price I paid, it was nice to get a hand carved top, which may explain why the guitar doesn't sound weak or tinny when played acoustically. Unfortunately, I never got a chance to play the Gretsch, but most of the videos of it on Youtube portrayed the sound of the guitar as more blues oriented, though I recognize that the style of play of the reviewer and the amp they used greatly effected the sound of the guitar. I played the Godin and while it gets great reviews, I felt it leaned towards a blues sound, possibly due to the P90 pickup. It also had a tinny sound when played acoustically. While I am not criticizing this guitar, it simply did not sound like a jazz guitar to me, so I passed on it. I believe the review of Mr. Edelman indicates that he felt the same way. When I tried out the Loar, I plugged it into a basic Fender amp without any effects in order to get a clean sound. The guitar immediately grabbed me, offering the warm, clean sound of a jazz guitar that I was seeking. At home, I play it through my "Acoustic" brand amp without any effects and it sounds perfect, even with the steel strings that came with the guitar. I will eventually try flatwounds on it, but for now, I am happy with the sound. I think that in order to get the great jazz tone that this guitar offers, it is meant to be played through an amp with a very clean sound without any effects, but that is simply my opinion. I also tried out the guitar in an acoustic setting, playing with 3 other acoustic guitars. The guitar held its own with more than enough volume. The sound is much fuller than the Godin and does not sound tinny. It is hard to describe its sound, but you can hear some slight echo emanating from the body due to the F holes. However, acoustically, this guitar cannot compete with the deep bass you get from a dreadnought or standard acoustic guitar (nor do I think that it is fair to compare it either). I played mostly boom-chuck style on some popular standards and pop tunes and fit right in. I admit that I feel a little scared sometimes because the pickguard sits high up to accomodate the volume knob and so I am worried about leaning too much on the pickguard, but over time, I will get used to it. I also have to get used to the volume knob sitting on the pickguard because I noticed that when I lean my palm on the strings, the side of my hand brushes against the knob. This is the first guitar I have owned where a control knob sits on the pickguard. While the guitar is fine unplugged, I still think it shines when plugged in. I played some popular standards/jazz standards and smiled all the way through because of the great, warm sound. Soloing up and down the neck was neat too. I think that the Kent Armstrong pick-up makes the difference. The neck is slightly wider than a standard acoustic, but it doesn't hurt your wrist. The sunburst is beautiful with a nice sheen to it. They really captured that vintage guitar look. Nice logo on the headstock too. No upper knob for guitar strap and sole knob is at bottom of guitar where cable is plugged in, so you will need a strap with a clip that wraps under strings at the nut, or, sit, play and go without a strap if you can. Not a big deal, but it may bother some players. No tone control, only volume, unlike most archtops that have both..not a deal breaker for me. Maybe simpler is better. The seller told me that quality control with these guitars can be hit or miss, so I can see where reviewer Vince is coming from. Luckily, my guitar seems to be a keeper without any issues. There are some nice videos on Youtube of this guitar being played plugged in and acoustically. They are worth viewing simply to see if this guitar is for you and to get an idea about archtops. Loar makes the LH 650, which is nearly double the price. I never got to play it, but it was way out of my price range. I can't say whether it is worth going up that high. The bottom line is, if you want a nice archtop to play some mellow jazz through an amp, but, as an added bonus, will also hold its own in an acoustic setting, this guitar is for you, but I warn you, once you plug it in and play a tune, I think you'll enjoy it much more when plugged into your amp.
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