Buying my first Flamenco (Full Version)

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kingskins -> Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 20 2017 14:18:57)

Hi guys, I need some advice on choosing a beginners Flamenco guitar. I know this question has been asked 1000s of times, however the availability and price range is also a factor in the UK. 

First a little about what I'm looking for. A few months ago I purchased a cheap Yamaha C40 to try to make sure learning Spanish and classical was something I was going to stick with. I've been practising a few hours each day and I think it's time to go to the next step. I've never owned a hugely expensive guitar (I used to play electric many years ago) so my standards are not set very high. Ideally I'm after something with a nice bright top end but still some warmth in the lows.

When I have seen this asked before the Yamaha CG172SF comes up a lot. Unfortunately they do not make these any more and what's left is not available in the UK. My next choice was the Alhambra 3F. I've watched some videos on youtube and it sounds pretty nice, but then due to camera quality sometimes it's hard to judge. My limit is £500, no more. The 3F is available here for £400. The same place has the 4F for £450, however it comes in a deep orange and doesn't look very nice for me so I wouldn't go for that. 

The other options from what I have seen are the Cordoba F7 at around £470 or the Paco Castillo 213f for £370 from Being a beginner I don't want to spend too much but also I would like something that will last a year or so as whatever I buy will loose value obviously, the longer it would last the better. I would like to play a mix of some classical, but mainly Spanish and Flamenco so I don't want an extremely low action, but obviously want more than the usual Classicals. 

Thanks for your time and help guys, if anyone has any advice or experience with any of these guitars I would really appreciate it.

Johnc -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 20 2017 14:40:05)

I believe the Yamaha CG172sf was called the cg182sf in the UK
which you should be able to find

no idea what its like tho! I had a 171sf which was ok for the price :)

good luck


kingskins -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 20 2017 14:51:28)

Oh wow OK. Thanks for that, that is very helpful as well as making things more confusing! haha So it's the same price as the Alhambra 3F at £400. Ideally that would be my maximum but I could go over a little to £500. I would say it's definitely out of these 2 if anyone has any advice in which is better overall?

If I remember correctly the 171sf was the predecessor to the 172sf? (which is also the same as the 182) A lot of these advice posts I have read are quite old and the 171 got recommended A LOT saying it had warm lows with the bright top end.

kingskins -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 20 2017 15:03:27)

I have found a Yamaha 182 2nd hand for £300 so saving a whole £100 if I choose that 1. Any more advice is much appreciated

mrstwinkle -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 20 2017 15:57:59) have the Cordobas a little cheaper.

I had a Cordoba for about 18 months and thought it was okay. Very playable and sound was bright and 'flamenco'. Isn't 'the best' guitar, but certainly better than the cheap Alhambra affairs I've tried.

Or look at used ones in Spain ( etc ) and treat yourself to a flight over to collect.

Leñador -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 20 2017 18:18:08)

My advice would be spend as little as you can on a guitar with a comfortable flamenco feel, basically everything that's been named is fine. After a few years you're ears will develop and you'll begin to know what you actually want out of a guitar.

kingskins -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 21 2017 10:15:42)

Thanks so much for all the kind responses guys. I will go for the Yamaha I think as the reviews are consistant. I don't need anything too flashy right now and anything is an upgrade to what I am currently playing.

What strings would you recommend on a cheapish Flamenco? I currently have the D'Addario EJ45 Pro-Arte Normal and I do have a spare pack, but would you recommend using Flamenco strings?

Argaith -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 21 2017 12:50:11)

I would personally begin with a used guitar but something good.
There's a Ricardo Sanchis on eBay; slightly above your budget but if I was after a guitar, I would definitely consider this.

Good luck,

callemunicion -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 21 2017 14:01:03)

the mundo flamenco guitars are pretty good and they are not very expensive.

estebanana -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 21 2017 17:21:49)

I like the Yamaha 182 Sf they are consistent good guitars.

Johnc -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 21 2017 20:20:45)


ORIGINAL: estebanana

I like the Yamaha 182 Sf they are consistent good guitars.

Youre not going to get a better recommendation than that.
And i agree with lenny, buy something affordable now, save up and buy something special from one of the luthiers here, in a year or two, or three..

As for strings, you only have to do a quick search to realize its all subjective and guitar specific, you just have to try them for yourself

Whereabouts in the uk are you? I ask as its only a matter of time before someone advises you to get a teacher, and i would recommend nick in manchester if you’re anywhere near there

Good luck


jahboy -> RE: Buying my first Flamenco (Jul. 22 2017 7:08:19)

I have Admira which I paid around £350 for. I considerably lowered the action and keep fresh strings on it and it sounds great. Bigger sounds than all the other "entry" level Flamenco's I played. In fact I was only planning on keeping it for a year but at the moment I can't see any reason to change it. I'd certainly recommend going to play a few. Bare in mind that out of the factory the action is quite high though.

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