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Blueridge BR-160A - Rate and Review

Rate The Blueridge BR-160A
 5 - Best Blueridge I ever played
 4 - Highly recommend the BR-160A
 3 - Good Blueridge, give it a try
 2 - Did the job, nothing special
 1 - Save your money, forget the BR160A

Blueridge BR-160A Reviews

Name: F Steiner
Date: 7-26-2014
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the BR-160A: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: Pre-war vintage styling, 1 3/4 nut, tone, loudness, playability, overall it looks like a genuine Bluegrass guitar

Dislikes: ABS plastic bridge pins and end pin

Additional Comments: Dear Maury's Music, (July 25,2014)
I received my Blueridge 160A guitar yesterday with a great deal of anticipation as well as angst.  Soon after I placed my order over the internet, I came across a few 'so-so' reviews, and thought I better not expect too much.  I was quite surprised and very pleased at how wonderful the guitar looked after removing it from the box and packing material.  In fact, I received the exact S/N I had seen on your website, and so was immediately impressed.  After pushing down the bridge pins and tuning it up, I was immediately impressed with the tone, the volume and the 'playability'.  The 1 3/4 nut and neck is perfect and the larger bottom frets make this vintage looking pre-war guitar very easy to play.  It has more volume than my Washburn D10 SCE, which is a very nice and popular guitar.  I specifically wanted a pure acoustic Bluegrass type guitar with an Adirondack top, and had been looking at various brands, (including Martins) which all happened to go up in price by $200 in just one day last week, so your price was the best I could find.  I had previously purchased another guitar off the internet and when I received it, it was so light weight that it felt 'cheap', plus the intonation was quite a bit off.  The factory set-up on this guitar was very good.  This guitar also has some heft and feels like a real guitar.  It is not a Martin, e.g. the ABS bridge pins and end pin are an example of a cost saving measure, but this guitar has a bone nut and saddle, (like are you kidding me?) which is fantastic.  I was actually 'underwhelmed' by the tone of several Martin guitars that I played in a very prestigious music store in Michigan, and which were several thousands more.  This guitar is definitely a great value.  It looks great and sounds great.  Thank you.

Name: Curt
Date: 29 June 2014
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the BR160A: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: The BR-160A has an absolutely great sound.  This is a lot of guitar for the money.

Dislikes: None

Additional Comments: As of this writing, I've only had the BR-160A for a few weeks, and I'm comparing it to my 1981 Martin HD-28 with a Sitka top that I bought new.  My Martin has FWI nut, saddle and bridge pins, so my "normal" baseline for sound quality is fairly high.  But the BR-160A really does have a nice, rich, and full sound.  The 160A sound is a bit brighter and not quite as deep as my HD-28, but then again, the Adirondack top really hasn't had much time to open up.  The tonal difference between the two guitars is really minor, and if I wasn't doing a side-by-side comparison, very little or nothing would stand out.  I expect the BR-160A to just get better and better as time goes on.

I also found that Maury's Music has great customer service and responds very quickly to any questions.

Name: Johnny Sokko
Date: 5/19/2014
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the BR160A: 5 - Best thing I ever played

Likes: Let's see... everything.  The build quality is excellent but the TONE is unbelievable!  This guitar is loud!  Deep bass, clear, bell like highs and excellent note definition.  The Adirondack top makes the notes seem to jump out of the guitar.

Dislikes: That I can't play it 24 hours a day.  My electrics are getting lonely.  In fact my Les Paul is glaring at me as I write this.

Additional Comments: I always wanted the sound of a D-28 without a second mortgage and/or a divorce and let me tell you the BR-160A delivers it in spades!  I did a lot of research and Maury's had the best prices and reputation around.  I'm one happy customer that's for sure.

Forum username: Old Hillbilly
Date: June 26, 2013
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the Blueridge BR160A: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: Pretty much everything. Playability allows a softer touch which can only help to improve my stuff.

Dislikes: No problems so far It's so pretty it won't be going to any festivals - a shame because it would murder a lot of banjos.

Additional Comments: This is a really fine guitar - Extraordinary volume and great tone - nice action and outstanding cosmetically - will blow away most of the high-end guitars out there. Gitcha one - you won't regret it.


Name: Jake
Date: 5/29/2013
Review: Blueridge BR160-A
Rating you give the Blueridge BR-160A: 5 - Best guitar I ever played

Likes: - The sound: amazing tone that in my experience not just matched, but actually surpassed the legendary D28 and HD28
- Beautiful lows, mids, and bell-like highs
- Good factory action, internal build quality is excellent

Dislikes: - Fret material could be harder, but not that expensive to upgrade to stainless later if needed

Additional Comments: I compared this in store with a D28 and HD28 (I was there with every intention of purchasing a Martin), and the BR160-A honestly sounded better. I didn't expect it to, but it did, so I ended up buying it! A few months on, the tone is only getting better. It's an amazing instrument hands down - not just for the price. But the price is a steal - and with the money you save you can try a few different sets of strings, saddles, and pins to find what suits you best.


Name: Greg
Date: 3/31/13
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the Blueridge BR-160A: 5 - Best thing I ever played

Likes: I love this guitar!  It really is a beautiful guitar and sounds awesome.  Nice base tones, middle and the high end rings clear and crisp.  Exceptional playability and this thing just rocks!  The Adirondack top is georgous and sounds incredible the more that I play it.

Dislikes: None.

Additional Comments: I'm glad that I did my research and bought my guitar from Maury's.  Great price on an awesome guitar.  My guitar arrived with a broken string and Heather was very helpful in sending me another full set of stings.  I would definately buy from Maury's Music again.  Great prices and great service.

Forum username: Alec_f1
Date: December 22, 2012
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the BR160A: 5 - Best thing I ever played

Likes: Love the Adirondack wood grain, the shiny finish, the deepness of the sound, the crispness of the notes, ease of play, classic looks, the huge amount of vibration of the Adirondack top, and the way the mids and highs ring to the ears (absolutely gorgeous tone!)

Dislikes: The globby overcoat on the side of the fretboard where the top and the fretboard join, the size of the headstock and plainness of it also (sorry, I like ornate inlays and purfling. Must be the pimp in me.)

Additional Comments: I fought with putting this on my credit card for a while because it had to ship to the billing address and I wasn't about to leave this on my front porch.  First bought a BR-160 from Amazon but sent it back because the can't compete with Maury on price of a a BR-160A with a guitar case or give me an inspection of the guitar from a professional like Maury's.  The guitar I received from Amazon looked like they had just plucked it from the shipping container from the boat and had it shipped in a flimsy cardboard box with no inspection at all. I really wanted the Adirondack top and Maury had it for just a little more than Amazon's price of a BR-160, and I also didn't want to take a random guitar that could have defects.  Maury was a no-brainer.  I shipped Amazon their BR-160 back un-opened and unplayed.  Maury shipped mine in the beautiful hard case with green velvet.  Maury took the time to unwrap it and set it up perfectly!  I am so happy with the guitar and recommend buying from Maury exclusively due not only to his price point, but also because of his attention to detail and customer service.  The Blueridge may not be the pinnacle of craftsmanship that some of the other famous names in guitar luthiers are, but they more than make up for that in the sound and tone put into them.  I'm not sure if it's the solid woods that it's made from or the craftsmanship in the bracing or both, but this guitar is a dream to my fingers, my ear, and my brain.  I'm not a bad player and I was looking for an instrument that would enhance my playing, and this BR-160A did exactly that.  Blueridge is a damn fine crafted guitar with an unbelievable sound and wonderful price!
Date: 12-11-12
Review: BR-160A
Rating you give the Blueridge BR160A: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: Everything. Just played a D-18 and my BR-160A and the Blueridge wins in every category.  Price for sure, but quality as well.

Dislikes: None.

Additional Comments: These should make Martin wake up, an take notice of the standards from Saga.
Name or Forum username: Gavrikon
Date: 12-10-2012
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the BR-160A: 5 - Best thing I ever played

Likes: Beautiful ringing sound coupled with a neck and fingerboard that just feels right.  And the price goes without saying.  It is astounding to me that I could buy something this wonderful for such a reasonable price.  And that Maury is such a great guy with whom to do business.  And what a beautiful case, with my favorite color for a lining that fits the guitar like a glove.

Dislikes: That I didn't have the cash to buy a BR-180A to get the ebony fretboard as well as a BR-140A for the "hog" sound.   Also, that Maury's doesn't ship to APO addresses, or I might have had the custom setup and a pickup installed.  I also dislike having to sleep and therefore must put my guitar down from time to time.  Feeling guilty for not buying American.  Wishing I had known bout hi brand while there was time to buy a Brazilian rosewood model dread, the idea of a BR-26/80A in Brazilian is something that still gives me the shivers

Additional Comments: Sigh.   I bought a new Lakewood D-22 back in 1986, a midrange German guitar made by Martin Seeliger.  It is Cedar with Walnut back and sides, and sounds exceptionally nice when played through the piezo.  I always figured that I would buy a Martin to go along with it, but the only models I can afford are made with non-traditional materials (yuck).  Then, I heard a BR140A and could not believe that something so gorgeous could be so reasonable.  Well, since my job was offshored to India and my engineering job doesn't pay nearly what it used to, I decided WTF.  If US companies are bound and determined to destroy their own middle class, I might as well buy what my new salary lets me afford.

Play one of these.   I tried it along with quite a few Martins, but they brought me no more audial bliss than did this.   And Maury, should you decide to start shipping to APO addresses, I might be saving up for another.  The selection through my local German handler is pretty sparse.
Name or Forum username: snake
Date: 10/20/2012
Review: Blueridge BR-160A

Likes: The tone of this factory-fresh guitar is amazing. I can't imagine how good it will sound in a couple of years. My Santa Cruz and my D-18 GE are gonna be in their cases for a while, that's how good this guitar sounds. The playability of the guitar was very good right out of the box. The fit/finish and build quality are excellent.

Dislikes: None. For the money, this Blueridge BR-160A can't be beat.

Additional Comments: Maury's service was great.
Name: Ken
Date: 3-14-12
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the Blueridge BR-160A: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: This is a beautiful guitar and sounds awesome,the bass,mid. and high tones are just right.It sounds as good and better than a lot of Martins I've played.All the finish looks perfect on this one,and I love the headstock on the 160-A, it doesn't have the over fancy inlay on there like the regular BR-160, and I like that.  I highly recommend this guitar,why pay a lot more for a Martin, when you can get the sound from one of these.  The set up was great when I got it.

Dislikes: Don't really have any.

Additional Comments: If you want that Martin sound without having to pay big bucks for it,Then get you a Blueridge BR-160A. Go getcha one, you won't be sorry.
Forum username: kman38
Date: 02/24/2012
Review: Blueridge 160A
Rating you give the Blueridge BR-160A: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: Decided to have a custom set up done. Received this "cannon" and could not believe the volume and tone. I own a Martin HD-35 and have recorded both to determine if the $3000 35 sounds better, it doesn't. The 160A has the same tone quality and resonates longer. Great guitar for under $950! Don't be afraid to try one of these, you will not find better fit and finish anywhere and the tone is everything I hoped for. Also, the 160A doesn't have all the MOP and abalone bling that the 160 has. That is an improvement as far as I am concerned. The adirondack top turns this into a clean sounding cannon. The custom set up allows me to play my style without buzz with super low action. I love my Martin HD-35, but if I had known what I now know about Blueridge, I would have two of them. A 140A and a 160A and still have money left over.

Dislikes: I haven't found one yet!

Additional Comments:
I am totally satisfied, and I am very picky and hard to please. I was very concerned buying a guitar without being able to play it first, but I was very pleased with what I received. Thanks Maury! Anyone want to buy a like new HD-35?
Name or Forum username: lemmongrass
Date: 2/23/12
Review: Blueridge BR-160A & BR-180
Rating you give the Blueridge BR-160A & BR-180: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: The 160a is fun to play, smooth & hearty. The 180 is one step above. Narrow, slim & smooth neck. Its more than just bling. Not as brassy as my 73 D35 & My Hd35.

Dislikes: 160A isn't as tough ln a jam with Martin & Collins.

Additional Comments: I play my Blueridge solo at church. I like the deep bass of my Hd35 in the big jams. Happy pic n.
Name: Bill
Date: 1/10/12
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the BR-160A: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: Deep rich sound. Great volume. Great playing guitar. Quality built and very beautiful.

Dislikes: There was a hole in the box when I received it that put a small dent in my case. There is a few dust specs and one lint hair in the clear coating on the back of the guitar but it sounds too good to return over that.

Additional Comments: If you want a perfect guitar with perfect finish then spend the thousands and buy a Martin. If you want an awesome looking deep rich sounding guitar that IS in the same sound league as a Martin then this is the guitar for you. It may not have the name but it has better or equal volume and sound as many Martins.
Forum username: Aural Eloquence @ AGF
Date: Monday, June 27, 2011
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the BR-160A: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: When this guitar arrived at my home, i was stunned at how beautiful this thing really is.  The finish on the one i got is gorgeous, and almost mirror like.  It also feels very solid, and after a quick "look over" i didn't notice a single blemish.  I sat down right away to tune it to standard, and as i strummed an open G chord, i smirked and kinda "nodded" at the guitar, because i knew i had just spent a relatively little amount of money for a whole lot of guitar.  I'm not sure which strings exactly came with it, but i am assuming they're D'Addario's Medium EJ17's.  I'm used to Eixir PB Nano Mediums, so these new strings felt a little weird at first but the tremendous tone, resonance and sustain assaulting my ears made up for that really quickly.  I wanted a rich, loud and overwhelming sound with a lot of low end, mids and still some solid treble....and that's exactly what i got.  I am extremely happy with this purchase, and thoroughly impressed with what i got for my money.  As far as quality goes, i really don't see, feel or hear anything wrong with it, and like i really is a very beautiful guitar.  I love the classic look, the awesome headstock and the shade of the Adi top is very well to my liking!

So, long story short...i feel like i got more than what i paid for, just like i did when i got my first guitar on sale for $200 inc. a HSC.  It's truly a great feeling to play this Blueridge and have no doubts or regrets about bang for buck, whatsoever.

Dislikes: This really isn't a dislike, but this section just so happens to be called "Dislikes", so i suppose i'll write this here. Out of the box, the action wasn't as low as i hoped it would be.  However, this really isn't a Blueridge problem, nor is it a Maury's Music problem.  Every guitar needs a setup to suit it's new owner's preference, but i had no idea how to explain what i wanted in the "Custom Setup" section, so instead of spending an extra $60, i decided to take a chance.  Don't get me wrong, the action is still good, but higher than i hoped it would be.  So, here's where i recommend potential buyers to consider Maury's custom setup option!

Additional Comments:
Keep in mind this is the very first "expensive" guitar i purchased for myself, so i'm going to be slightly biased, as i have nothing to compare it to, other than the guitar i started with.  Sure, i've played other peoples' Martins, Taylors, Larrivees, Collings' and a variety of custom built guitars, but those aren't mine, so i will never connect to them the way i do to my own.  I started on a Washburn D10S, a guitar which i've loved since the first time i strummed a buzzy chord.  So, i am going into this review, purely basing my opinion on this product in direct comparison with my trusty ol' friend.

After several suggestions to look into the Blueridge line of guitars, i decided to do extensive research.  In about a week and some change, i dare say i read every review, listened to every Youtube video and played Maury's sound clips on the 140, 160 and 180, including the "A" models, just about 100 times. I finally decided to go for the 160A, because i didn't feel like dishing out the extra dollar for some added bling, but i do prefer the Indian Rosewood over the Mahogany on the 140A.  Enter Blueridge BR-160A!

I'd like to thank Maury for making my first experience with a "real" guitar a rather wonderful one.  The sheer amount of information on the product, the confidence inspiring "10 Point Inspection", the pricing, the comparisons with high end guitars, the ease of use of this website, and very impressive shipping packaging all contributed to making my a very happy customer.  I will most definitely come back here when i am ready to buy another instrument!

Comment from Maury's Music.  Thanks so much for the kind words... we're so glad you had a great buying experience!
Name: Eric
Date: 9-7-10
Review: Blueridge BR-160A
Rating you give the Blueridge BR-160A: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: Fantastic instrument. Sounds a little cold and stiff the fist 15 minutes, but transforms into a warm, punchy, living, breathing tone monster once it warms up. Plays amazingly well, I'm spending a lot of time playing again.

Dislikes: This instrument came to me from Maury with a cosmetic blemish UNDER the poly coating that I unfortunately missed until after having the guitar beyond the return/exchange period. Looks aren't everything, and I love the tone, but it is a bummer to receive a guitar with a blemish.

Additional Comments: These are really amazing sounding instruments. I am a recording engineer by trade, and regularly record a player who has several rosewood martins, and while each guitar has a different timbre, this one is just as pleasing as his D-28HD, he loves to play it.

Comment from Maury's Music.  Hi Eric, I'm very sorry you're not completely happy with your 160A. Hopefully the fact that you didn't see it in the first 7 days (and it passed my personal inspection) means that it's very small.  I'm curious to know if this is an irregularity in the wood.  Please contact us if you'd like to help me better understand.  Thanks.

Name or Forum username: Kojo
Date: 8/26/2010
Review: BR-160A
Rating you give the Blueridge BR-160A: 4 - Highly recommend it

Likes: I bought a "new old stock" guitar - a 2007 model.  It has the narrower neck, which I prefer because I have small hands, and the narrowness gives the neck a faster feel to me. THE TONE: oh boy - it blew me away. I'd never played an Adirondack-topped guitar before, and although the eBay seller had light-gauge strings (dead) on the 160A, it still rumbled like an avalanche. Never heard anything so awesome. I put medium gauge on it, tuned it really well, plied a big 2 mm flatpick to it, and I didn't put it down till bedtime. It's beautiful, too - the headstock is dazzling. The finish is flawless, tuning machines are good, nice fat frets, love the Brazilian rosewood fingerboard! Pickguard gets loads of attention. This guitar, I hate to say, is a much better-sounding guitar than my '81 HD-28. No comparison, really.

Dislikes: The intonation sucked. Right now, it's in the shop and they're moving the saddle (maybe bridge and all) back just a tad. Every note on the whole fingerboard, except one, plays sharp. A chord played up the neck is just crazy. However, it's no worse than a 1970s Martin. I expect decent intonation though, and thus the repairs.

Additional Comments: Gotta say that this BR-160A was an eBay find - was new, but was also a "second" because of a blemish or two. The bad intonation could have been part of that, too, I suppose. I got it for a good price, so I can afford to have this work done and still have a great guitar at a low price. I honestly don't see why people pay $3000 for a Martin, when, for $700, they can have a better-sounding guitar w/lifetime warranty. If you're in the market for a "boomer" - at least TRY this one before shelling out the huge bucks. I'm saving now for one of the top-of-the-line Brazilian Blueridges. Yee-ha, dang, I can't wait! Wish they'd top one of those with Adirondack or Englemann spruce...

Comment from Maury's Music.  Seller was NOT Maury's Music.  We would never ship a guitar with old strings or intonation problems.  We also do not sell on eBay.


Forum username: cibby53
Date: 07/28/10
Review: BR160A
Rating you give the Blueridge BR-160A: 5 - Best thing I ever played

Likes: Really like the neck and 1 3/4in nut width.  The BR140 I bought 5 years ago had a narrow neck and really felt cramped.  This BR160A is perfect for my med/large hands.  Bass has that vintage thump you here on older Martins with rosewood back&sides.  Clear as a bell up the fretboard with a high end you find on high dollar Martins.

Dislikes: Can't find any dislikes. The set up was right on 3/32in at low E 12th fret and 2/32 high E 12th fret.

Additional Comments: I didn't know the Blueridge Adirondack topped A series were the tone monsters they are or I would have bought one sooner.  The BR-160A looks like a $2500 acoustic plays like one sounds like one.  For the price you won't believe what you get.  Fit and finish is outstanding. Plus sound and playability is top notch bracing pattern gives it the vintage Martin sound you pay big bucks for.

Blueridge BR-160A,br160a,Blueridge BR160 A,160a
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