One thing that sets this guitar apart from other models is the quality that it has. From playing it to hearing it you can feel that. The tone that it can provide is an obvious sign of the exaggerated amount of time that has been put into beautifully crafting this instrument. This is a quality guitar that comes in the budget range of entry-level models.
This quality is mainly given by the great materials Seagull chose to use for making it. Usually, in a guitar aimed at this level, you will find laminate spruce tops, but this is not the case with this guitar. The S6 uses a solid cedar top that has also been pressure tested. Guitar players know that the top of the instrument is one of the most important factors when it comes to the voice of the guitar and the sound it can produce.
As a result, the solid top gives a lot more power, volume, and a better tone. For the sides, Canadian Wild Cherry has been chosen, and the same for the back. The model is built in Canada, and that is why this was the choice of wood.Buy from Amazon.com for ($499)
Known amongst professionals for their bright sound, Seagull guitars have a downside. Bright guitars are a double-edged sword – they sound great when picking, but if you want some bass in your amplifiers, you won’t find much of it. The bright tone will mean that the notes produced by the S6 will ring out loud, clear, and for a longer time.
Furthermore, notes in chords are easier to distinguish, but that comes at the disadvantage of bass. If you’re the kind of person that plays blues or likes that mellower sound, this guitar will not rise up to your standards.
Main features explained
The construction of this instrument is something unique, especially when considering its direct competition. When you see this model at first, it may not strike you as astonishing, but when you get to hold it and you can examine the precise craftsmanship up-close, you will find where the wonderful tone comes from.
The solid cedar top is something that feels really durable, but it’s not the only good thing about this guitar. While the neck of this guitar is somewhat wider compared to similar models, especially for steel-stringed guitars, but it’s still playable. Those used to playing slick electric guitars or small acoustics might have some issues with playing this instrument at first.
It’s not a guitar for those with small fingers, as you will need quite some elasticity to reach all the strings. However, with some practice, everyone can get to play this instrument comfortably in no time. If you’re switching from a classical guitar, you will feel right at home with this one.
The darker Canadian Wild Cherry wood on the sides and back is not something that you usually see in guitars around this price range. This scores additional points in terms of looks and aesthetics, and it also gives the guitar a simple, natural, yet elegant feel. No matter where you want to use the guitar, it will look perfect for the situation.
Another thing that you might observe when looking at the guitar is the slightly unusual headstock. It has an “ice-lolly” shape, which should help with holding the strings straighter. This usually means that the drag is reduced and the headstock is capable of keeping the strings in tune for a longer time.
This makes the guitar ideal for live performances, as you won’t have to go over retuning it again and again.
When it comes to the little pieces making this guitar, the saddle of choice for the model was the Compensated TUSQ. It’s not one made by the company but it’s bought from Graphtech, a company specialized in making saddles from this material. Being a special material, TUSQ can provide the rich tone that you expect from ivory saddles, but without inconsistencies.
Ivory and bone pieces often have harder or softer spots throughout them, and that often hampers the sound and the transfer of sound from the piece to the guitar top. TUSQ saddles and nuts, on the other hand, are created to replicate the benefits of ivory, but without the downsides. As a result, this saddle has a lot to do with the quality of the guitar sound.
The nut is made from the same material, and the resting piece where the saddle sits is constructed using gorgeous cherry wood that adds to the looks and holds the piece securely in place.
While the nut is a bit wider than expected, measuring 45mm, it is still playable, although electric guitar players will have to get used to the wider dimensions at first. Let’s not forget that the purpose of these pieces of hardware is to provide high-quality so that they can all come together to offer a unique and quality tone.
The saddle is compensated, meaning that it takes into account the fact that each string is different and it positions them so that playability is increased and the tone of the guitar isn’t affected.
This is something that most players won’t notice at first because it’s such a small detail, but if you get the chance to change your strings you will see how there are small grooves in different directions for each string.
Feel and action
There are not many acoustic guitars that you can find under $1000 that can play as well as this one. There are some who argue that acoustic guitars have a certain “ceiling”, a certain level that they can reach in terms of sound quality, a level past which the sound can’t get better due to technical reasons.
Well, when it comes to this guitar, you will be surprised how high that ceiling can get, and if you don’t forget the fact that the S6 has been created for beginners and intermediate players, that is even more impressive.
Sometimes compared to high-end models, such as those coming from Taylor, Seagull models offer a lot in terms of feel and playability. The importance of the build quality also comes into the main picture again, for the reason that with better quality comes better playability. You could say that a model such as this one is the bridge that connects the really beginner models and the professional ones.
It doesn’t have the feel of a special custom made guitar that costs thousands of dollars, but it certainly feels much better than plywood guitars. Usually, guitar in this price range will play okay, but not impressive, however, this model will stand out playing like a more expensive guitar than it actually is.
While you will find the neck to be wider than expected, there is plenty of room between each of the strings to allow for a comfortable playing experience. For those with big hands and fingers, it’s an instrument made in heaven. There might be some issues for small-handed individuals but those problems can be surpassed.
Elevating some of the strings, the compensated saddle and the nut provide improved playability, and they also make the sound a more consistent one.
No matter how fancy a guitar is and how strong it is over the years, the most important thing is the sound it’s capable of producing. Fortunately, the Seagull S6 will not disappoint from that point of view. It gives out a warm timbre, and plenty of shimmer and twang when you need it to. Its solid cedar top cannot be compared to the usual spruce laminated tops, that’s how good it is.
It takes less time to break in and to get the full potential out of it. Furthermore, one great thing about solid-body instruments is the fact that they age so well. When playing a laminated instrument, it will sound good for the first couple of years, but then the sound starts fading or getting distorted.
Solid top instruments are like wine, aging well, and most of the time providing a warmer, mellower sound. The strings that come with the instrument are also decent, although you might want to have a look at some of the best models out there when you can.
However, the fact that they stay rested on the TUSQ saddle instead of cheap plastic will help the instrument bring out some beautiful harmonics. The result is a bright and lively sound that is able to create clear music. The guitar has great sustain, especially when it comes to treble, while its disadvantage is that the bass is not as emphasized as it should be.
This means it’s the kind of guitar you would love to play for the arpeggios or for picking (country-style works wonders on this model). It will still do a good job around campfires when strumming it, or on the stage, but if you hit the strings too hard it might feel a bit too sharp, and that will annoy the ear.Buy from Amazon.com for ($499)