This is a great guitar for the money. It's cost less than the Baby Taylor. And is by far better made and sounds way better.
Model Year: 2004
Price: $450.00 (new)
Where Obtained: Guitar Center
This is a great small body guitar. Well made with a great sound. If your looking for a travel guitar this is it. Solid sitka spruce top,Mahogany pattern HPL textured finished back and sides.
Playability is very good,body size Modified 0-14 fret.
Tough to play pass the 12th fret.
Fun guitar to strum or finger pick.
Durability, seems well built. Time will tell.
Overall this is an awesome guitar. If it were stolen I would definitely buy another; I got a great deal on it ($280 for a Martin? That's awesome). I fell in love with this guitar when I first laid hands on it and I'm sure anyone else looking for a smaller solution to the clunky acoustic dreadnought would feel the same way. The tone is sweet for its size and so is the volume. This guitar lives up to the Martin name.
Price: $280.00 (new)
Where Obtained: Island Guitars
This guitar has 20 frets and a Martin's Black Micarta fingerboard. The neck seems to be made of Indian Rosewood (from looking at Martin's tone wood lists) but I'm not sure of that: it has a very nice grain and interesting hue to it. The body has a very thin spruce top, and what appears to be a mahogany back and sides. The guitar also came with a free gig bag that has a very good amount of padding, velcro strap for the neck, and a generously sized pocket in the front.
The action on the guitar is just right: not high, but not too low either. The neck is small, but very easy to play on, even w/ my big hands. It's easy to slide your hand down the neck.
For such a small guitar I didn't expect to get very good sound or volume. I was so surprised upon picking up this guitar at the store! It sounded better than my Morris dreadnought, even, and just as loud! The tone is nice and warm due to the materials used: you can tell this is a Martin guitar. The top is made thinly to accomodate the resonance of a smaller bodied guitar, so everything balances well. I prefer picking up and playing this guitar over my dreadnought. For about $50-80 more you can get a version w/ a pickup too; and I would definitely use this guitar for performances.
I was worried about damaging this guitar when I stayed at a beach house, but assuringly enough it survived the trip (amidst lots of other heavy luggage). It withstood the moist, salty conditions of the area as well, without losing integrity. Not a scratch yet on the top, even when hit w/ a pick. The neck seems to hold up to long playing well (sweat and continuous use) and the tuners hold very well: I don't really have to tune it often.