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Breedlove Guitars, a name synonymous with craftsmanship and innovation, has long been a cherished choice among musicians seeking exceptional sound and playability.
With a legacy dating back to the 1990s, this Oregon-based company has consistently pushed guitar design and construction boundaries to new heights.
In this review, I will outline the features of five guitars from Breedlove’s lineup, detailing their sound, build quality, playability, and cost.
Whether you’re a seasoned performer or a budding enthusiast, this guide should help demystify Breedlove’s selection of guitars, and in turn assist you in your decision as to which of their instruments will be right for you.
What are the Best Breedlove Guitars?
In-Depth Breedlove Guitar Reviews
Without question the most expensive option in this guide, the Breedlove Limited-edition Premier Concertina is built with the most discerning of guitar collectors in mind.
Firstly, the guitar is constructed with Brazilian rosewood, a rare tonewood which contributes to the high price point. It is worth noting that Breedlove has made use of 100% sustainably sourced wood in constructing this instrument, reflecting the company’s commitment to preserving the planet’s natural resources.
Breedlove’s signature Sound Optimization process, coupled with precise hand-voicing, elevates the guitar’s sonic capabilities. This meticulous technique fine-tunes specific frequencies, resulting in a fantastic level of consistency and tonal balance overall.
In addition, the LR Baggs Anthem TRU-MIC electronics are a noteworthy feature. They faithfully replicate the guitar’s natural, vibrant, unplugged tone.
Practicality is another strong aspect, with the pinless bridge simplifying string changes, a convenient feature of this guitar.
Premium features aside, this guitar is also simply a joy to play. Its resonant and clear African ebony fingerboard and slim neck profile enhance playability, making it feel not only practically effortless but deeply satisfying to jam on this instrument.
- Brazilian rosewood back and sides
- African ebony fingerboard and slim neck profile
- LB Baggs Anthem Electronics
- Unmatched tonal quality and playability
- 100% sustainably sourced
- Superb craftsmanship and build quality
- Steep price range out of reach for many
The Breedlove ECO Discovery S Concert Mahogany guitar is a fantastic option for those seeking an affordable yet high-quality instrument. As the most budget-friendly option in Breedlove’s lineup, it serves as the perfect gateway to the Breedlove brand and an excellent starting point for beginners.
Part of the ECO Series, this guitar stands out with its high-quality construction. The solid African mahogany top resonates with a warmth and richness that belies its price point. Complemented by the Mahogany EcoTonewood back and sides, it delivers a powerful and room-filling sound.
Like other guitars offered by Breedlove, one of the standout features of the ECO Discovery S Concert is its sustainability. Breedlove has used sustainably harvested tonewoods, a rarity in this price range, making it an eco-conscious choice for environmentally aware players.
Beyond its eco-friendliness, the slim African mahogany neck offers a comfortable playing experience, perfect for long practice sessions. The advanced construction techniques employed by Breedlove ensure that this guitar not only sounds exceptional but is also built to last.
- Mahogany EcoTonewood back and sides
- Slim African mahogany neck and ovangkol fingerboard
- Pinless bridge for easy string changes
- Extremely good bang for your buck
- Sustainably sourced in spite of its low-cost construction
- Warm, resonant sound and playability
- The discerning guitarist may want higher quality materials
Next up on our list is the Artista Pro Concert Black Dawn CE, which in my opinion represents the best of Breedlove’s intermediate priced range.
The Black Dawn CE boasts a solid Sitka spruce top that delivers crisp and articulate highs, while the African mahogany back and sides provide warm and resonant lows. The result is a harmonically rich and well-balanced sound.
The addition of a cutaway and Fishman INK3 electronics with a built-in tuner makes this guitar perfect for gigging musicians. It offers easy access to the higher frets and ensures your live performances sound just as good as your practice sessions.
A particularly impressive feature of this instrument is the cascade bracing pattern.
In essence, it applies the design principles of Breedlove’s acclaimed Sound Optimization technology to the company’s more affordable models, and allows for full bodied vibration of the instrument, giving this guitar a rich and balanced tonality.
- Solid myrtlewood back and sides
- Maple neck and ovangkol fingerboard
- Fishman Flex Plus-T electronics
- Rich and balanced tone
- Solid electronics which recreate natural tone well
- Cascade bracing pattern allows for optimised sound without the cost
- Although relatively affordable, might be still out of budget for beginner players
Next up on our list of the 5 Best Breedlove Guitars is the Breedlove Jeff Bridges Oregon Concerto CE, an optimally featured option for the professional guitarist.
These guitars are built from sustainably harvested tonewoods and proudly feature the motto “All in this Together” on their fretboards, emphasising their commitment to the environment.
The Amazon Concert Sunburst CE is a visually stunning instrument with a unique tobacco sunburst finish that showcases the torrified solid Sitka spruce top and elegant gold hardware.
Granadillo wood, used for the back and sides, boasts a striking appearance akin to a blend of walnut and cocobolo. Surprisingly, the plastic inlays, including the headstock logo, convincingly mimic mother-of-pearl.
Playing the Amazon Concert Sunburst CE is a sheer delight, offering comfortable access to higher frets with its 25.5-inch scale length, slim neck, and easy factory action. Not only this, but the Sound Optimisation build allows for a rich, vibrant and balanced tone.
Aside from its build quality and sound, another aspect that sets this guitar apart is its commitment to eco-friendliness. The Jeff Bridges signature project supports the Amazon Conservation Team’s vital rainforest and culture preservation work.
- Figured myrtlewood top, back and sides
- LB Baggs Anthem electronics
- Concerto body shape
- 100% sustainable and eco-friendly
- Beautiful aesthetics and build quality
- Comfortable playability
- The ‘All in this Together’ inlay may not suit a player who is not a Jeff Bridges fan
Last on our list is the Breedlove Rainforest S Concert Midnight Blue CE, best suitable for those who are looking for an instrument that suits a slimmer budget, without compromising on quality.
This is a compelling acoustic-electric guitar that strikes a balance between affordability and quality. With its eye-catching midnight blue finish, it’s an instrument that stands out in terms of aesthetics whilst not breaking the bank.
This guitar is designed to cater to budget-conscious buyers without compromising on sound. The combination of a solid Sitka spruce top and mahogany back and sides produces a warm and resonant tone, making it suitable for various playing styles.
When it comes to electronics, the Fishman Presys I produce a warm, vibrant sound, elevating this budget-friendly guitar.
In terms of playability, the Rainforest S Concert model excels. Its slim neck profile and smooth factory setup allow for comfortable fretboard navigation and easy chord changes. This makes it an excellent choice for both beginners and more experienced players seeking an affordable option that doesn’t sacrifice on performance.
The midnight blue finish adds a touch of sophistication to this instrument, making it an attractive choice for those who want both style and substance.
- Mahogany EcoTonewood back and sides
- Solid mahogany top
- Fishman Presys I electronics
- Fishman Presys I electronics create a strong, warm and vibrant sound
- Visually appealing aesthetics for a budget guitar
- Solid build quality
- More minimal in design compared to Breedlove’s more premium options
Breedlove Guitars Buying Guide
If you’re in the market for an acoustic guitar, you’ve likely come across Breedlove Guitars as a top contender. With their commitment to craftsmanship, sustainability, and innovation, Breedlove has earned a stellar reputation among musicians.
In this buyer’s guide, we’ll delve into the history of the company, explore why Breedlove is an excellent choice for acoustic guitars, and provide you with a comprehensive list of features to consider when making your purchase decision.
About Breedlove Guitars
Founded in 1990 by Larry Breedlove and Steve Henderson in Bend, Oregon, Breedlove Guitars has been at the forefront of crafting exceptional acoustic instruments for over three decades.
The company’s commitment to quality, innovation, and sustainability has set them apart in the competitive world of guitar manufacturing.
Sustainability and Eco-Friendly Initiatives
One notable aspect of Breedlove Guitars is their dedication to sustainability. In recent years, they have taken significant steps to reduce their environmental footprint.
They have introduced innovative practices such as the use of EcoTonewood, a responsibly harvested alternative to traditional tonewoods, in their more affordable models.
This sustainable approach not only benefits the environment but also ensures that players get great-sounding guitars without compromising on quality.
Unique Sound Optimization Process
Breedlove’s dedication to sound optimization is a key factor that sets them apart. They employ a cutting-edge process that fine-tunes the sound characteristics of each guitar.
This meticulous attention to detail results in instruments that are finely balanced and have excellent projection.
Craftsmanship and Aesthetics
Every Breedlove guitar is a work of art. Meticulously crafted by skilled luthiers, these instruments boast exceptional build quality. The attention to detail is evident in every aspect, from the precision of the fretwork to the flawless finish.
Breedlove guitars are known for their unique and eye-catching designs. The combination of exotic tonewoods, inlays, and rosette designs makes each guitar a visual masterpiece in addition to being a musical one.
What Makes Breedlove Guitars a Good Option for Acoustic Guitars?
Breedlove’s reputation as a top choice for acoustic guitars relies on several key factors:
1. EcoTonewood for Affordable Models
Breedlove’s commitment to sustainability is reflected in their use of EcoTonewood in their more affordable guitar models. This alternative tonewood is sourced responsibly, providing an eco-friendly option without compromising sound quality.
For those conscious of the environmental impact of their choices, these guitars offer an excellent compromise between affordability and sustainability.
2. Sound Optimization for Premium Models
Breedlove’s premium guitars take sound optimization to the next level. Each instrument goes through a meticulous process to ensure that it produces the best possible tone and resonance.
This dedication to sound quality makes Breedlove guitars a preferred choice for professional musicians and discerning players who demand the utmost in performance.
3. Exceptional Build Quality
No matter the price range, Breedlove guitars consistently exhibit outstanding craftsmanship. From the selection of tonewoods to the precision of the construction, these guitars are built to last and deliver exceptional performance.
4. Aesthetically Pleasing Designs
Breedlove guitars stand out not only for their sound but also for their stunning aesthetics. Exquisite inlays, unique rosette designs, and the use of beautiful tonewoods elevate the aesthetics of these guitars.
If you’re looking for an instrument that’s as visually appealing as it is sonically impressive, Breedlove is a very solid option for you.
Features to Look Out For
When considering a Breedlove guitar, it’s essential to pay attention to various features to ensure you get the right one for your needs. Here are some key aspects to consider:
The choice of tonewoods significantly impacts the sound of a guitar, especially when it comes to acoustic guitars. Breedlove offers a wide range of tonewood options, so consider what tonal characteristics you prefer. For example, mahogany offers warmth and balance, whilst rosewood provides a bright, articulate sound.
2. Body Shape
Breedlove offers a variety of body shapes, each with its own unique sound profile. The Concert, Auditorium, and Dreadnought shapes, among others, cater to different playing styles and tonal preferences. Be sure to choose a body shape that suits your comfort and sound requirements.
If you plan to perform live or record, consider whether the guitar comes with built-in electronics. Breedlove offers models with top-notch pickup systems for amplified sound from brands such as Fishman.
4. Neck Profile
The neck profile influences playability. Breedlove offers different neck profiles, from slim and fast-playing to thicker, more traditional necks. Test different neck profiles to find the one that feels most comfortable in your hands.
Breedlove offers guitars at various price points, so determine your budget beforehand. Remember that while higher-priced models often come with more features and premium tonewoods, Breedlove’s commitment to quality means even their more affordable options are excellent choices.
6. Case or Gig Bag
Consider whether the guitar comes with a case or gig bag. Protecting your investment is essential, and a well-fitted case or gig bag will help safeguard your guitar during transport and storage.
Always try out a Breedlove guitar before purchasing it. Playability is subjective, and what feels comfortable to one player may not be the same for another. Test the action, fretwork, and overall feel to ensure it suits your playing style.
Breedlove Guitars FAQs
1. Where Are Breedlove Guitars Made?
Breedlove Guitars are made in Bend, Oregon, USA. The company’s headquarters and manufacturing facilities are located near the Cascade Mountains, where skilled luthiers handcraft each instrument with precision and care.
2. Which Famous Guitarists Use Breedlove Guitars?
Several renowned musicians have chosen Breedlove Guitars for their exceptional sound and craftsmanship. Some notable artists who have played Breedlove guitars include Kim Deal of the Pixies, Robben Ford, Jeff Bridges, and Thom Yorke of Radiohead.
3. How Old Is Breedlove Guitars?
Breedlove Guitars was founded in 1990, making the company over three decades old. Over the years, they have continuously evolved and innovated, solidifying their position as a respected name in the world of acoustic guitars.