Most helpful positive review
61 of 65 people found the following review helpful
A neat, compact package
on August 16, 2007
I've had various travel guitars- I have a Taylor Big Baby, and used to own a Martin Backpacker- but I was looking for something that was more portable than either- something small enough to pack inside a suitcase and carry on vacation. I wasn't looking something with great sound, or something stageworthy, just something with a full sized neck to practice on when I was away from home.
I tried one of the Travelers that comes with both piezo and magnetic pickups at a local guitar discount chain, and I liked the feel (though not the painted finish); it was the only model they had, so I decided to do a buit more research into the range. Back home, I looked at the Traveler Guitars web site, and this model caught my eye- no electronics, piezo pickup only, but it was light, tiny, and came in an attractive natural finish. And the price was right, too. I decided to chance it.
It arrived this morning, and I've been playing with it most of the day. Fit and finish is very good, if simple, and the feel of the neck is excellent. The neck in particular shows a lot of care, with all the frets carefully hand-filed and shaped- no sharp edges here, like on so many inexpensive imports. Traveler is either doing a lot of QC on these guitars when they arrive, or they've found a really good shop to produce them.
Despite the odd shape and lack of a headstock, it's easy to play. I found that a strap was more comfortable for me than the clip-on lap support, but thanks to the light weight, even without the strap or the lap support it's easy to hold.
Plugged into a standard guitar amp- a Tech21 Trademark 30- the sound was not very good- too much of that piezo twang, and an uneven balance. But plugged into the high-impedance (10 megohm) input of my Acoustic Image Contra, the sound was surprisingly good- better than a lot of much more expensive, piezo outfitted instruments I've tried. Using my K&K Preamp with a short (6") patch cord also delivered a much improved sound.
In summary, I'm very happy with this guitar (in fact, I've got in on my lap as I type this). It's tiny enough to travel everywhere, and with the right amplification, it sounds very good. In fact, I'm thinking the Traveler bass guitar might be a nice addition to the collection, too.