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Shining brightly in the budget acoustic guitar category is the wonderful Jasmine S35. Designed by the experts at Takamine, it's easy to see why the S35 is a top-selling guitar at both Amazon and Guitar Center: it plays well, looks great, and is extremely affordable. It's a full-size acoustic guitar meant for the serious beginner who wants to learn how to play. A rosewood fretboard is comfortable to play and easy to maintain. Its spruce top gives off lively tones that fill the room with beautiful sound. A smooth high-quality satin finish makes the guitar look and sound great. For under $100, the it's is one of the best acoustic guitars on the market today. Check out our Jasmine S35 review below!
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The unmistakeable dreadnought shape of the Jasmine S35 is simply iconic. Even from across the room, you can tell it's a quality instrument. From the front, the dark rosewood fretboard and the light spruce top combine to create a beautifully elegant guitar. From the side, contrasting black binding and flowing lines draw the eye to make this an instrument that looks as good as it sounds.
A joy to play, the S35 will feel instantly familiar to anyone who has played guitar before. Its scale length (distance from bridge to nut) is a standard 25.5" - perfect for all players.
The Jasmine S35's neck is quite slim compared to other acoustic guitars, which is perfect for guitarists with small to medium sized hands. However, even those with large hands can still play it comfortably with the correct technique. The neck is made of nato wood, a dark wood very similar to mahogany. It creates a full and dynamic tone that suits all styles of playing. The nut is made of plastic - not ideal, but it's a consequence of the guitar's budget pricing.
The S35's fretboard is made of a gorgeous rosewood and imparts warmth to your music. With 20 frets, you can play just about any song you can dream of on the S35.
Like the neck, the S35's body is also made of nato wood, which create a mellow, full tone. The top, however, is made of spruce, renowned for its clear and powerful tonal quality. This combination of woods is quite common in budget and intermediate acoustic guitars thanks to its versatility and great sound quality. A natural satin finish keeps the body looking beautiful. The glossy black pickguard helps keep your guitar scratch-free as well.
To give the top support and structure, acoustic guitar tops are 'braced' in an X-pattern. Unlike most acoustic guitars, the Jasmine S35 utilizes 'Advanced X-Bracing' (shown above) - a more modern bracing method that places the braces closer to the sound hole of the guitar, creating a livelier, more open tone than standard, traditional X-Bracing. The advantages of Advanced X-Bracing are not only evident in tone, but in the reduced weight and increased sturdiness of the guitar.
Like the fretboard, the bridge is made of rosewood. Black plastic pins keep the strings snug and secure to the body of the guitar.
Standard chrome tuning machines keep the Jasmine S35 in tune. For such a budget guitar, the tuners do a surprisingly good job of keeping the guitar in tune.
When you get your guitar, be sure to change the strings! The stock strings that come with the guitar are of very poor quality, so it's worth it to change them as soon as you get the guitar!
The standard Jasmine S35 sadly doesn't come with any extra accessories or gear. However, on Amazon, you can purchase a 'Guitar Pack' that comes with a bunch of nice-to-have accessories that you may end up buying in the future anyways. With the Guitar Pack, you get
Some of these accessories are crucial for playing and sounding great, like the tuner, picks, and strings. If you don't want to shop around for each of these bits of gear, then the Guitar Pack is a great time-saver!
Big, bold, and full is we'd describe the Jasmine S35's tone. There are multiple elements at play that give the guitar its great tone: the spruce top, rosewood fretboard, and Jasmine's X-Bracing technology that allows for a more open, lively sound compared to traditional acoustic guitar bracing methods. Don't think, however, this guitar sounds like a $500 acoustic - it doesn't. As you gain experience, you might find yourself wanting a different sound. When that day comes, the Jasmine S35 will still serve you well as the perfect backup or practice acoustic guitar.
Ready to experience the sound for yourself? Check out this demo of the Jasmine S35 below:
Reviews on Amazon and Guitar Center are overwhelmingly positive. A lot of praise is directed at the guitar's price-to-quality ratio. While it may be priced quite affordably, the Jasmine S35 certainly punches above its weight and delivers great value.
Occasionally, an odd review mentions some problems with the guitar's playability, which will necessitate either a return or a trip to your local guitar shop for a setup.
Like many mass-produced guitars, the Jasmine S35 may have some occasional blemishes or minor issues when taken out of the box, so be sure to inspect yours when it arrives!
For beginners and intermediate guitar players, the Jasmine S35 will make a brilliant starter or practice guitar. It's super affordable and sounds amazing for its price. For under $100, you get a high-quality, name-brand, great sounding instrument. It doesn't get much better than that!