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A friends wife has asked me to help her find a guitar for her husband for his birthday. I was hesitant at first and told her that a guitar is a very personal item and that it would really be best to have him pick one out for himself, but this fell on deaf ears. I figured I should help her and not leave this up to a salesman who might be looking for an uneducated person.
 So....

For the money, what is the best guitar someone could buy for around $500.00.  I know I have seen a post like this before, but I am unable to find it. I have read a bit about Simon & Patrick guitars, but I know nothing about them. Thanks for any input.

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Any thoughts on the Epiphone Masterbuit acoustics?

The Epiphone Masterbilt models have had great revues for the $500 range. I have no personal experience with them, other than what I have read. A used Larivee would also be a good choice! Good Luck!

There's a lot to choose from these days. I happen to like the Taylor GS Mini. I bought one for my son and it is quite a nice guitar.

Hi Robbie. I have been looking at those, I love the look, but haven't touched one myself. I think I might get one down the road when the price dropes a bit, but I don't think a mini would be the way to go here. Thanks much.

You might want to play one. They have a longer scale than a baby Taylor and the same neck joint as the expensive models. It's loud, has very good tone and holds its own with D-28s. I have it in my lap right now.

I repaired two inexpensive but good quality acoustics today. The Mini is in a different league. I have to admit the Epiphones are a good value, but if I can't get another '63 Epiphone Frontier....

Is that Marvin the Martian you have pictured?

I will certainly check them out, I do think they are beautifully made guitars. You are close on the guess, it is Lily the Martian, my little girl. That made me laugh when I read it, thanks again Robbie.

The Godin instruments that I've played have all been decent for the price.  I don't own one but I know people that do and they are all pretty satisfied. 

 This thread has come up many, many times on various Forums, and the general consensus when the threads are done, is that the winner is almost always the Simon And Patrick/Godin family. They have the bottom end  of the market totally sewn up because of quality instruments that last seemingly forever.

So Simon and Patrick/Norman/ La Patrie/ Art and Luthier/Seagull, all of these are made in La Patrie Quebec, and are available in almost every guitar store in North America from what I have heard. I have played hundreds of them. They are the first guitars of folks everywhere. 

I'm supporting Ned's call here  - hard to beat the Godins for pure value for money, build integrity and overall quality.

Rusty.

I have had several acoustics in my life, and I currently own only one,

a Taylor 110. For me, it is the best I have ever had. I bought it used,

but in mint condition, for $400, and have been extremely happy with it.

 

The Epiphone Masterbilt series is wonderful. These are in my opinion the best "bang for your buck" guitars around right now. I have a sloped dread and it sounds wonderful. I have 6 years on it at this point and it is solid as ever. Sounds great too!

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