Douglas Signus Nat EQ Acoustic/Electric Guitar

Douglas Signus Nat EQ
Full Size Dreadnought Acoustic-Electric Guitar
Features:
- Spruce top, mahogany back and sides
- Cut-away body for comfortable play
- Optional user-installable pickguard
- Built in Pre-amp (Fishman Isys+) with EQ.
- Rosewood fingerboard and bridge
- Truss Rod Adjustable Neck
- Overall length 41"
- Actual Weight is only 6.5 lbs

Action, Fit & Finish:
The finish on these Douglas guitars is outstanding. Buffed to a high gloss, without one discernable flaw anywhere. Th finish on the sides & back, though, seems a little too much tinted, and it hides the Mahogany grain, unless there’s a lot of light on it. Still, it’s quite pretty.
As for the fit, everything is lined up as it should be, i.e., the strings are evenly centered along the fingerboard, and the guitar appears to be quite solidly constructed. Action is excellent right out of the box, with the neck relief just right. No tweaking was needed at all!

Tone & Playability:
I don’t play acoustic guitars very much, and even to my ‘tenderfoot’ fingers, this guitar is very easy-playing. Unplugged, it has a full, even tone, with great bottom end and excellent clarity. And it’s quite loud, as well. Plugged in, the sound is full, very present, and clean. Good bottom, punchy mids, and highs that are right there, but not ‘ice-picky’ at all. The two-band EQ gives pretty decent control over the tonal balance. There’s also a button marked ‘Phase’, but I haven’t been able to figure out exactly what that does. There’s an ever-so subtle change in the tonal balance when it’s switched in or out, but it’s definitely not a ‘phase shifter’ effect. A big plus is that the electronics even have a built-in tuner, as well. Very handy! And it’s hard for me to even believe that you can buy a guitar at this price with Fishman electronics in it!

Overall Impression:
I found this guitar to be of a quality worth far more than the price of $119.95 would tend to indicate. The build-quality is top-notch, and the finish is just immaculate. Playability and tone, while not on par with top-of-the line high-dollar instruments, are still quite good. Oh, and the tuners on this guitar are really cool! They’re sealed die-cast tuners, with ‘butterbean’ style knobs made of black plastic with a matte finish that makes them feel almost like rubber; very grippy. The tuners’ action is very smooth and positive, and they hold tune perfectly well, as far as I can tell.
I keep saying this over & over in these reviews, but we here at diyguitartone.com continue to be highly impressed with the SX/Agile/Douglas line of instruments imported from China by Rondo Music. For the musician on a budget, or for the musician that enjoys modifying instruments, you can’t possibly go wrong at these prices. You wouldn’t want to hack up your $3000 Gibson to try out a different pickup configuration, but with a guitar that cost less than $200, you don’t mind so much. These instruments, in my opinion, represent THE best value for the dollar of any I’ve ever seen. Period.