You are currently viewing 5 Best Breedlove Guitars – New Level of Fingerstyle Guitar

Last Updated on March 4, 2024 by Teemu Suomala

Author: DL Shepherd

Darren has been playing guitar for over 23 years. He fronted the metal band Suddenly Silence in the early 2000’s, and also achieved recognition as an award-winning bluegrass guitarist.

A native of southwestern Virginia, and has shared the stage with many big-name acts from various genres. When he is not playing one of his many guitars, he can be found riding his Harley through the mountains of Virginia.

photo reveals owner of guitaristnextdoor.com

Editing & Research: Teemu Suomala

I first grabbed the guitar in 2009. I started this website in January 2020 because I couldn’t do window installation anymore due to my health problems. I love guitars and have played dozens and dozens of different guitars through different amps and pedals over the years, and also, building a website interested me, so I decided to just go for it! I got lucky and managed to get awesome people to help me with my website.

I also got lucky because I have you visiting my website right now. Thank you. I do all this for you guys. If you have any recommendations, tips, or feedback, just leave a comment, I would love to chat with you. I have also been fortunate to produce content for several large guitar websites, such as SongsterrMusicnotesGuitarGuitar, and Ultimate Guitar.

I spend my spare time exercising and hanging out with my wife and crazy dog (I guess that went the right way…).


Best Overall Breedlove Acoustic Guitar – Breedlove Jeff Bridges Oregon Concerto CE

Reviewer: DL Shepherd

Sound
Playability
Overall Quality
Value For Money
Fingerpicking feel

Summary

Pros 
-All-Myrtlewood body produces a crystal-clear tone with no muddy bass
-Pinless bridge makes string changes a breeze
-Comes with a soft case (this is a bonus since most do not come with cases!)
-Concerto body size is comfortable to play sitting or standing

Cons
-80/20 strings may produce a tone that is a little too bright for some 
-The price may be too high for someone on a budget

Who is this guitar for?
This guitar is for anyone who is looking for a high-end acoustic guitar that sings with a crystal-clear voice. Many will appreciate the fact that it was built with sustainability in mind as well. 

4.9

How Breedlove Jeff Bridges Oregon Concerto sounds:

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The Next Best:

Best for Beginners – Breedlove ECO Discovery S Companion

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Our Overall Rating

Summary

Pros 

  • Companion body size is great for beginners and smaller players
  • Warm, well-balanced tone with great projection
  • Pinless bridge makes string changes easy

Cons

  • No onboard electronics
  • Would benefit from a bone nut and saddle instead of plastic

Who is this guitar for?

The Breedlove ECO Discovery S Companion is great for beginners who are looking for a guitar that will last them for a very long time. It is also the perfect size for traveling. 

 

Best Premium – Breedlove Legacy Concert CE

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Our Overall Rating

Summary

Pros 

  • “C”-shaped neck profile is comfortable to play
  • Warm tone blends well with other instruments in a mix
  • LR Baggs Anthem system makes it easy to go electric

Cons

  • Expensive!
  • Real bone nut and saddle should be on a guitar in this price range

Who is this guitar for?

The Breedlove Legacy Concert CE is for the player that insists on having the best of the best. It is also for fans of a warm acoustic guitar tone. 

Best Budget – Breedlove ECO Rainforest S Concert CE

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Our Overall Rating

Summary

Pros

  • Laminated tonewood means durable construction
  • Warm tone with balanced highs sounds great plugged or unplugged
  • Fishman PreSys I system gives you control over your plugged-in tone
  • Pinless bridge makes string changes easy and reduces string tension

Cons

  • Does not sound as refined as solid wood Breedloves
  • Some copies have suffered from fret buzz

Who is this guitar for?

The Breedlove ECO Rainforest S Concert CE is for any guitarist who is wanting a nice acoustic electric without spending a ton of money. 

Best Nylon String – Breedlove Organic Solo Pro Concert CE Nylon-string 

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Our Overall Rating

Summary

Pros 

  • All-solid wood construction sounds warm and full
  • Side Monitor Soundhole allows you to listen easily even when playing with many different instruments
  • Fishman electronics give you complete tone control

Cons

  • A bone nut and saddle should be on this guitar

Who is this guitar for?

This guitar is great for any seasoned player who is looking for a great nylon string guitar with modern appointments. 

Compare The Key Specs:

Graphic Compares 5 Best Breedlove Acoustic Guitars

Compare The Tonewoods:

Graphic compares acoustic guitar tonewoods

Body Top: Figured Myrtlewood

Sides: Figured Myrtlewood

Back: Figured Myrtlewood

Neck: Eastern Hard Rock Maple

Fretboard: African Ebony

Body Top: Solid Western Red Cedar

Sides: Laminated African Mahogany

Back: Laminated African Mahogany

Neck: African Mahogany

Fretboard: Ovangkol

Body Top: Sinker Redwood

Sides: Solid East Indian Rosewood

Back: Solid East Indian Rosewood

Neck: Honduran Mahogany

Fretboard: African Ebony

Body Top: Laminated African Mahogany

Sides: Laminated African Mahogany

Back: Laminated African Mahogany

Neck: African Mahogany

Fretboard: Ovangkol

Body Top: Solid Western Red Cedar

Sides: Solid Western Red Cedar

Back: Solid Western Red Cedar

Neck: African Mahogany

Fretboard: Ovangkol

You can learn more about acoustic guitar tonewoods here.


About Breedlove

If you’re looking for a completely different acoustic guitar that offers a modern take on the traditional acoustic guitar design, then Breedlove guitars are exactly what you’re looking for. 

Think about it…

The traditional acoustic guitar design has been done to death. Just look at Martin, Taylor, and Gibson. Many of their designs go back for nearly 200 years with Taylor being the only one to offer any new takes on the traditional design.

That is until Breedlove started in 1990.

Larry Breedlove and Steve Henderson left their cushy jobs at Taylor Guitars and started making their own guitars in Bend, Oregon. They took pride in their ability to craft acoustic guitars with innovative features such as bridge trusses, graduated tops, and winged bridges. They also began using Myrtlewood in their guitars – a tonewood that other guitar manufacturers quickly dismissed. 

The company changed hands in 2010, but they are still committed to innovation and customization. 

Let’s take a look at the best Breedlove guitars to find out what makes them so special. 

Our Reviews of The Top 5

Keep These 3 Key Things In Mind When Choosing:

Breedlove has different body shapes than other acoustic guitar makers. The Concerto, Concert, Concertina, and Companion are four smaller body shapes that they have created. Pay attention to the dimensions!

Myrtlewood is used throughout their guitar lineup. It sounds different than more traditional tonewoods. 

While most of their guitars are acoustic-electric, they also make a few models that are strictly acoustic. 

How Did We Choose These Guitars?

I have played all of these at some point and made detailed notes about them. Anytime I go to a music store, I take my trusty notebook and pen with me in order to record my thoughts.

Yes, I’m old school. I still use a pen and paper for everything. You can keep your fancy phone stuff!

These choices are based solely on what I have played so far. I never dismiss a guitar as “bad” (unless the guitar is simply unplayable); instead, I ask myself, “What is good about this guitar? Who would benefit the most from this instrument?”

You don’t see many Breedlove guitars on stage in my area simply because players here in the Appalachian mountains prefer more traditional designs from Martin and Gibson. Therefore, I had to go out of the area in order to play these. It was well worth the trip though, and I got to play a ton of great guitars!

Most acoustic guitars we recommend are run through tests like these:

  • We go carefully through the finish and build quality of the guitar.
  • We inspect the fretwork and edges of the fretboard to make sure there are no sharp edges.
  • We play the acoustic guitar unplugged and plugged in.
  • We use different playing techniques, such as fingerpicking, flatpicking, strumming, tapping, and even percussive playing.
  • We measure and weight the guitar.
  • We try licks and riffs from different genres.

Learn more about GND’s testing and reviewing processes here.

Best Overall – Breedlove Jeff Bridges Oregon Concerto CE

Specs

Body ShapeJeff Bridges Concerto
TopFigured Myrtlewood
Back & SidesFigured Myrtlewood
NeckEastern Hard Rock Maple
Neck ShapeSlim C
FretboardAfrican Ebony, 20 frets, 16″ radius
NutBone
Nut Width1.75″
ElectronicsLR Baggs Anthem TRU-MIC
SaddleBone
Scale-Length25.5″

The best Breedlove acoustic guitar that I have played is the Breedlove Jeff Bridges Oregon Concerto CE. It was designed in collaboration with actor and musician, Jeff Bridges. While he is not necessarily known for his guitar playing, he can surely help design a good guitar! 

This instrument demonstrates quality and playability at its highest levels. It starts with a body made from tonewoods that were harvested sustainably – the trees were either salvaged from logs collected from storm-damaged areas or through individual harvesting. 

The concerto-sized body is made entirely of Myrtlewood which produces a tone that seems to be a blend of rosewood, mahogany, and maple. It has a brighter response than mahogany in general, but it is low-mid-focused like rosewood. The bass is punchy and not overly muddy. This means that your tone stays bright and focused even if you like to use darker-sounding strings like phosphor bronze. 

The neck is maple and it is capped by an ebony fretboard which is inlaid with the words, “All in This Together.” The bourbon whiskey finish gives it an old-school look that looks great under stage lights. 

As for playability, this axe is one of the best that I have played. The action was perfect, and you can really tell that extreme care was used when making the neck.

It responded well to both chords and soloing without making my hand ache. Sometimes that is a gamble since I have a light case of carpel tunnel in my chording hand. 

I cannot stress this enough: this acoustic sounds vibrant! There isn’t a speck of mud in the tone at all. The only flaw that I might assess is that brighter strings (like 80/20 bronze) may sound a bit too bright for my tastes. The phosphor bronze strings really sing on it though. You’ll be able to adjust the settings on an acoustic guitar amp to balance out the highs a bit better. 

I challenge anyone to find an acoustic-electric guitar that plays and sounds as good as the Breedlove Jeff Bridges Oregon Concerto CE. It is one of the best acoustic guitars that I have ever played. The Dude abides! 

How this guitar sounds:

Summary 

Pros 

  • All-Myrtlewood body produces a crystal-clear tone with no muddy bass
  • Pinless bridge makes string changes a breeze
  • Comes with a soft case (this is a bonus since most do not come with cases!)
  • Concerto body size is comfortable to play sitting or standing

Cons

  • 80/20 strings may produce a tone that is a little too bright for some 
  • The price may be too high for someone on a budget

What Others Are Saying:

I’ve been playing guitar over 50 years and have had many fine acoustics. But this one is truly special. It has the perfect combination of rich tone, yet it can cut through the mix effortlessly. – John from CA“My Martin D-35 sounds muddy and muffled in comparison to this guitar. My Guild D-55 sounds a bit brighter, but also a little muddy (not as much as the Martin, though) in comparison. It is also noticeably louder than the Breedlove. But the Breedlove is more focused than these two spruce/rosewood guitars, it has excellent tone and, like the Martin and Guild, is a real pleasure to play. It is currently my favorite, but that might be due to the newness factor. But it is a great guitar, fun to play, pleasing tone, with a great woodgrain, stain and overall finish. I am very happy with my purchase.” – Dr. T, Sweetwater customer

Who Is This For?

This guitar is for anyone who is looking for a high-end acoustic guitar that sings with a crystal-clear voice. Many will appreciate the fact that it was built with sustainability in mind as well. 

Who This is NOT For?

This guitar is not for someone who is looking for a cheap acoustic to beat around on. This is a work of art! 

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Best for Beginners – Breedlove ECO Discovery S Companion

Specs

Body ShapeCompanion
TopSolid Western Red Cedar
Back & SidesLaminated African Mahogany
NeckAfrican Mahogany
Neck ShapeSlim C
FretboardOvangkol, 19 frets, 16″ radius
NutPPS-plastic
Nut Width1.69″
ElectronicsNo
SaddlePlastic
Scale-Length23.5″

Let me preface this by saying that this is one of the best little guitars on the market! It gives the Baby Taylor a run for its money! It is a budget-friendly guitar that offers beginners a high-quality instrument while being easy to play for smaller players. 

The companion-sized body is small and lightweight making it perfect for guitarists of all sizes. It is constructed of laminated African mahogany back and sides with a solid red cedar top. This gives a more traditional tone to the guitar when compared to other Breedlove models that are usually made of Myrtlewood. It is warm with a mid-range punch that you can expect from mahogany. 

Since red cedar is lighter than Sitka spruce (which is more common in the guitar industry), it is more responsive. This means that it doesn’t take much to get this little guitar to sing.

Fingerpicking with bare fingers is enough to bring it to life, and you’ll be surprised at how much sound comes out of this little box! 

Personally, I prefer the tone of this guitar to many other Breedlove models due to the fact that it is so well-balanced. It has more warmth without being muddy, and I can only guess that Breedlove’s sound analytics have something to do with it. It is absolutely one of the best Breedlove acoustic guitars that I have heard.

The fact that it plays so smoothly is mind-blowing! For real – the neck profile is comfortable no matter where you decide to plant your fingers. Players of all skill levels will love how effortlessly it plays. 

The pinless bridge makes it almost too easy to change strings – something that many budding guitarists are shy about doing especially if they have never done it before. The bridge also reduces the overall string tension which means that it is much easier to play. If you love to bend notes, then this is the guitar for you! 

If you’re wanting to get started with a guitar that will be a faithful companion for the rest of your life, then the Breedlove ECO Discovery S Companion is the guitar for you. It is absolutely the best Breedlove guitar for beginners and not just another “cheap acoustic guitar”. 

How this guitar sounds:

Summary 

Pros

  • Companion body size is great for beginners and smaller players
  • Warm, well-balanced tone with great projection
  • Pinless bridge makes string changes easy

Cons

  • No onboard electronics
  • Would benefit from a bone nut and saddle instead of plastic

What Others Are Saying:

“I own and play regular 2 higher-end Taylors. I need a guitar that I can leave out in my office and not worry about. I tried this Breedlove and can’t put it down. It’s truly a gem for the money it’s the top choice for sure. Just pull the trigger and get one.” – DD, Sweetwater customer

Who Is This For?

The Breedlove ECO Discovery S Companion is great for beginners who are looking for a guitar that will last them for a very long time. It is also the perfect size for traveling. 

Who This is NOT For?

This guitar is not for someone who is looking for a big, loud dreadnought sound. 

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Best Premium – Breedlove Legacy Concert CE

Specs

Body ShapeLegacy Concert
TopSelect Spruce
Back & SidesSelect Mahogany
NeckMahogany
Neck Shape1960s SlimTaper D
FretboardAfrican Ebony, 20 frets, 16″ radius
NutTUSQ
Nut Width1.75″
ElectronicsLR Baggs Anthem TRU-Mic
SaddleTUSQ
Scale-Length25.5″

If you absolutely have to have the best acoustic guitar in your circle of friends, then you should look at the Breedlove Legacy Concert CE to fill the role. It is a premium acoustic-electric guitar that sounds amazing, looks amazing, and plays amazing. I honestly don’t know how else to put it – it’s just a great guitar!

It is also the most expensive Breedlove model that I have had the pleasure to play. While the price may not be the best selling point, the tone certainly is. With this guitar, you get a redwood top with rosewood back and sides for a warm, punchy tone that sits well in any mix. A mahogany neck with a “C” shaped neck profile and an ebony fretboard complete this work of functional art. 

This entire guitar has been hand-voiced, meaning that the tonewoods are individually analyzed and cut to varying thicknesses in order to achieve their best resonance. Not many guitar companies do this by hand anymore, and Breedlove even backs it up with technology that helps fine-tune the top, back, and sides to the proper resonance. The results are astounding and guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

The Breedlove Legacy Concert CE has a warm tone with plenty of projection. While it tends to be a bit on the warm side, the highs still sparkle.

I would caution using phosphor bronze strings on this one unless you like a really dark tone. If you like a darker tone, then this is one of the best Breedlove acoustic guitars for that style. 

The LR Baggs Anthem electronics system means that you can show it off on stage while you plug it into a guitar amp or the house PA. You have complete control over the tone thanks to soundhole-mounted controls. This allows you to adjust the tone on the fly without having to fiddle with the controls of the amplifier. 

If you’re looking for the best-sounding Breedlove guitar, then you may have just found it. 

How this guitar sounds:

Summary 

Pros 

  • “C”-shaped neck profile is comfortable to play
  • Warm tone blends well with other instruments in a mix
  • LR Baggs Anthem system makes it easy to go electric

Cons

  • Expensive!
  • Real bone nut and saddle should be on a guitar in this price range
What Others Are Saying:

“My legacy concert is the best playing and sounding acoustic guitar I have ever experienced in my over 50 years of pro playing and teaching. The low action and thin neck profile makes it perfect for either light finger style or fast chord melody playing and it has a strong and responsive sound. I can’t recommend this instrument highly enough and it is well worth the price to have a guitar of this quality both as a players choice and as a terrific investment.” – Vince, Sweetwater customer

Who Is This For?

The Breedlove Legacy Concert CE is for the player that insists on having the best of the best. It is also for fans of a warm acoustic guitar tone. 

Who This is NOT For?

This is NOT a beginner acoustic guitar! It has many features that will be appreciated only by the seasoned guitarist. 

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Best Budget – Breedlove ECO Rainforest S Concert CE

Specs

Body ShapeConcert
TopLaminated African Mahogany
Back & SidesLaminated African Mahogany
NeckAfrican Mahogany
Neck ShapeSlim C
FretboardOvangkol, 20 frets, 16″ radius
NutPPS-plastic
Nut Width1.69″
ElectronicsFishman Presys I
SaddlePPS-plastic
Scale-Length25.5″

The best Breedlove guitar for the money is the Breedlove ECO Rainforest S Concert CE. It is a shining example of why Breedlove makes some of the best acoustic guitars in the world. 

Here’s why…

First of all, it is made with high-quality tonewoods that are sustainably sourced. In other words, no forests were harmed in the making of this guitar! That in itself is a win. For this model, it is all African mahogany. The top, back, sides, and neck are all mahogany EcoTonewood. EcoTonewood is a laminate that uses 2 outer layers of tonewood. It is more affordable than all solid wood construction, and it is also more durable. 

This gives the guitar a very mid-focused voicing with well-balanced highs and lows. You get smooth bass with a hint of brightness and crisp highs that never sound shrill. Rhythm playing sounds punch, light strumming has plenty of projection, and fingerpicking is articulate and rich. 

From a playability perspective, you get Breedlove’s “C” shaped neck profile that fits in your hand perfectly.

The Ovangkol fretboard is smooth, and electric guitar players will love how it plays effortlessly up and down the fretboard. You can also plug in thanks to the Fishman Presys I electronics and have complete control over your tone. 

For six bills (a budget price these days), you’d be hard-pressed to find another acoustic that performs as well as this one. While I’m not crazy about the fact that it is laminated, it is still hard to beat a guitar of this quality for the price. Any guitar of this quality below $1,000 is a winner in my book. 

If you need a new guitar but are watching your wallet, then you should definitely check out the Breedlove Eco Rainforest concert CE. 

How this guitar sounds:

Summary 

Pros 

  • Laminated tonewood means durable construction
  • Warm tone with balanced highs sounds great plugged or unplugged
  • Fishman PreSys I system gives you control over your plugged-in tone
  • Pinless bridge makes string changes easy and reduces string tension

Cons

  • Does not sound as refined as solid wood Breedloves
  • Some copies have suffered from fret buzz

What Others Are Saying:

The guitar looks amazing and sounds great! – Kailie M., Reverb customer

Who Is This For?

The Breedlove ECO Rainforest S Concert CE is for any guitarist who is wanting a nice acoustic electric without spending a ton of money. 

Who This is NOT For?

This guitar is not for players looking for an all-solid wood acoustic that gets better with age. 

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Best Nylon String – Breedlove Organic Solo Pro Concert CE Nylon-string 

Specs

Body ShapeConcert
TopSolid Western Red Cedar
Back & SidesSolid African Mahogany
NeckAfrican Mahogany
FretboardOvangkol, 20 frets
NutTUSQ
Nut Width1.89″
ElectronicsFishman Flex Plus-T
SaddleTUSQ
Scale-Length25.3″

Many Breedlove guitars lend themselves well to fingerstyle playing. The Breedlove Organic Solo Pro Concert CE Nylon-String is among the best nylon-string guitars that I have ever played. The classic sound of nylon strings combined with Breedlove’s incredible playability makes for a wonderful playing acoustic-electric guitar. 

You get a solid cedar top and solid African mahogany back, sides, and neck. The result is a very warm-sounding guitar that is incredibly responsive. Just a light touch of the strings is enough to make this little bird sing. 

The concert-sized body is smaller than a dreadnought but delivers an incredible amount of volume.

Perhaps one of my favorite features is the Side Monitor Soundhole. It is a second soundhole located on the upper side of the guitar that allows you to hear yourself like you never have before. It is incredibly useful when playing unplugged with a group of other instruments. Don’t worry – there is a cover for it if you prefer not to use it. It is a great feature that more guitars should adopt. 

The neck is incredibly comfortable and plays straight and true. I had no problem playing Eric Clapton’s “Signe” – my go-to song for nylon string testing. 

The Fishman Flex Plus T electronics allow you to plug in with complete control. The controls are located on the upper side of the guitar for quick and easy tone adjustments. 

Overall, this is probably the best nylon string that I have played recently. It just feels natural in your hands, and the tone is amazing. Plus, it is by far the best-looking nylon string guitar out there! 

How this guitar sounds:

Summary 

Pros 

  • All-solid wood construction sounds warm and full
  • Side Monitor Soundhole allows you to listen easily even when playing with many different instruments
  • Fishman electronics give you complete tone control

Cons

  • A bone nut and saddle should be on this guitar

What Others Are Saying:

“This guitar features a slightly wider nut than contemporary guitars, yet not as wide as the typical Classical guitar. The extra spacing helps me avoid plucking the wrong string. Yet the spacing doesn’t seem to affect my left hand forming chords. It’s comfortable to play and the tone is rich and beautiful. Hours of practice on the nylon doesn’t pain my fingers like the steel strings. The electronics work fine, as intended. I would recommend this product.” – Brian, Sweetwater customer

Who Is This For?

This guitar is great for any seasoned player who is looking for a great nylon string guitar with modern appointments. 

Who This is NOT For?

This is not for fans of super-wide necks. The neck isn’t as wide as typical classical guitars. 

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Runner-Ups That Just Missed The Top 5


Buyer’s Guide

The Breedlove Range Explained

Breedlove offers guitars that are designed to meet the needs of every player out there. Each one is crafted of responsibly sourced tonewoods of the highest quality so you get a great guitar without worrying about negative environmental effects. This is something that Breedlove takes a lot of pride in, and it shows! 

  • The most affordable Breedlove guitars are the ECO series. These are made overseas to Breedlove’s specifications, and each guitar is set up at Breedlove’s Bend, Oregon factory before they ship to you. These guitars are made from EcoTonewood, which is essentially laminated tonewood. These guitars are very durable thanks to the laminated tonewood. They sound and play great as well! 
  • The Organic series, Oregon series, Legacy series, and Tonewood Showcase series are the solid wood Breedloves. These are made in Bend, Oregon, and command higher prices. This is because they use premium solid tonewoods such as maple, mahogany, rosewood, and Myrtlewood. 

How to Choose The Right Breedlove Guitar For You?

Body Styles

displays Breedlove Oregon Concert CE
Breedlove Concert body shape.

Breedlove has some distinct designs that separate them from other guitar manufacturers. These designs are original and show their dedication to innovation. They take the old styles and tweak them for optimum resonance. 

  • The smallest is the companion size. These little powerhouses are bigger than parlor guitars yet smaller than 000-sized guitars. They’re great for songwriting sessions, beginners, or recording. 
  • Step up to a concertina body style for a bigger sound while still retaining a small footprint. These are a little bigger than a 000-size guitar.
  • For a good comparison to a 00-size, you can get a Concerto. They give you more projection and depth. 
  • Finally, the Concert style body is great for those who are looking to get the most volume and projection from their guitar.

Woods

Breedlove uses a variety of tonewoods in their guitars. Every one of these woods is sustainably sourced to make sure that there is very little impact on the planet. These woods include:

Mahogany
displays mahogany wood and reveals how it can affect the sound of electric guitar

Mahogany produces a warm, well-rounded tone. It can make a guitar heavier though because of its density. Mainly used for backs and sides, but some guitars have mahogany tops. Mahogany necks are also really common. Solid mahogany can work really well as a fingerstyle or blues tonewood.

Rosewood
Displays a rosewood tonewood

Rosewood is perhaps the most popular tonewood for acoustics. Not as a top, but as a back & sides. It has a warm, well-balanced tone. It is lighter in weight than mahogany and tends to resonate more freely. Mainly used for backs and sides. 

Myrtlewood
displays Myrtlewood
Myrtlewood is one popular wood on Breedlove guitars.

Myrtlewood was popularized by Breedlove and produces clear highs, warm mids, and deep bass. It tends to be brighter than mahogany or rosewood. 

Maple
displays maple wood and reveals how it can affect the sound of electric guitar

This tonewood offers a very crisp and bright tone. It has a very clear tone without a lot of sustain or overtones due to its density. While it can be used as a stunning top, it is more commonly used for backs, sides, and necks.

Sitka Spruce
Displays a spruce tonewood

This is used almost exclusively for guitar tops. It is a softer tonewood with a lot of volume and presence. It also has a very well-balanced and articulate sound that pairs well with the tonal bandwidth of a guitar. You can’t go wrong with a Sitka spruce top!

Cedar
Displays a cedar tonewood

Cedar is softer than Sitka spruce and therefore resonates more freely. While the sound is not as focused, it is warm and vibrant. This is a good choice for fingerstyle guitar players since it doesn’t take much force to make this wood sound great. It is used as a wood for guitar tops.

Electronics

 

LR Baggs Anthem Soundhole pickup system can be found in several higher-priced Breedlove guitars.

Breedlove utilizes both Fishman and LR Baggs electronics for their guitars. The type of electronic system depends on the model of the guitar, so read the descriptions carefully.

These systems consist of a preamp module usually mounted on the upper bout or in the soundhole of a guitar, and the pickup. Breedlove mostly uses an internal microphone pickup and piezo pickups. 

Microphone pickups are prone to feedback but give you the best sound replication. They consist of a microphone that is mounted inside the guitar. Piezo pickups are vibration-sensing pickups that are usually mounted under the saddle of the guitar. These are not susceptible to feedback, but some players find them to sound a bit too bright and thin. This can be offset (to a degree) with an external preamp or amplifier with an EQ.

Budget

If you’re on a budget, you want to look at something in the ECO series first. These will be your most affordable options. The Organic series is next followed by the Oregon series, Legacy series, and Tonewood Showcase series. The latter two are the most expensive. 

Skill Level

infographic reveals Different Guitar Skill Levels

If you are beginner, the ECO series will more than likely fit your playing needs as well as your financial needs since they are the least expensive. Honestly, I love the ECO series, and I’m a seasoned player. 

While the more expensive guitars offer more professional features that seasoned players will love, there is no reason why a player of any skill level wouldn’t like the more economical models such as the ECO series. 

How to Test

There are a ton of choices on this list alone so it is completely understandable to be lost when it comes to figuring out which brand to go with. You can narrow down your search by figuring out your basics:

  • What is my playing style? Fingerstyle or flatpicking? Soloing or rhythm? Plugged or unplugged?
  • What tone do I want? Bright and articulate? Well balanced? Heavy on the bass?
  • How will I be playing most of the time? At home? In the studio? On the road? 

Once you figure these things out, you’ll soon see the direction you should go.

  • If you’re wanting a flatpicking monster then you should look for a dreadnought-size guitar with a lot of projection and a balanced tone.
  • If you’re a fingerstyle player, you may appreciate a smaller-bodied guitar with a softer top (like cedar). 

Abou laminated vs solid wood Breedloves:

  • Guitars that are made from man-made materials and laminated wood will typically be more durable and hold up to the elements better than a guitar made from all solid wood. That is because they do not swell or shrink with changes in humidity or temperature. This is important if you’re constantly playing outdoors or are exposed to the elements. 
  • Acoustic guitars made of all solid woods will typically sound warmer and fuller than those crafted with man-made materials. They will, however, be more sensitive to changes in temperature and humidity. 

When you figure out the basics, you can then look at different brands that offer guitars that fall within your specifications. My advice is to play every single one that you are interested in (if you can). This will allow you to get a feel for the individual nuances that make them unique.


FAQ

Are Breedlove Guitars Any Good?

Yes, Breedlove guitars are some of the best acoustic guitars in the world. Learn more about why Breedlove guitars are considered to be good here.

Do Any Famous Guitarists Use Breedlove?

-Lisa Loeb
-Ed Roland – Collective Soul
-Jeff Pilson – Foreigner
-Jim James – My Morning Jacket
-Dustin Lynch

Where Are Breedlove Guitars Made?

Their ECO series are produced in Asia while the Masterclass, Legacy, Premier, and Oregon models, as well as some premium Signature models, are made in Bend, Oregon.

Do Breedlove Guitars Come With A Case?

No, with the exception of some signature models like the Jeff Bridges signature. 

Who Owns Breedlove Guitars?

Breedlove is owned by Two Old Hippies, LLC. 

Are Breedlove Guitars Good Quality?

Breedlove guitars are of excellent quality. Even the most affordable Discovery series are high-quality guitars. 

Are Breedlove Guitars as Good as Taylor Guitars?

While they don’t have a sizeable following, I believe that Breedlove guitars are crafted just as well as Taylor guitars and should be considered as a viable alternative. 

What Are the Best Acoustic Guitar Strings for Breedlove?

It depends on the model. I prefer to use 80/20 light gauge strings with guitars that have a mahogany, redwood, or cedar top. This is because they typically sound warm and the 80/20 really adds some sparkle.
For their Myrtlewood guitars, I prefer a phosphor bronze string to add more warmth to the low end. 


Conclusion

More and more guitar companies are looking for viable tonewood options that allow them to be more sustainable and responsible. This is no easy feat, but deforestation is a major threat to our environment. Breedlove started out in 1990 with a vision of being a completely sustainable guitar company, and they have achieved that goal. 

They did so by capitalizing on Myrtlewood, a readily-available wood that is native to the Oregon coast. They can not only tell you where the wood from your guitar came from, but they can also tell you exactly how it was harvested. This information is given to you with some of their models! How cool is that?

Overall, they are more than just a guitar company with environmental concerns. Their instruments are works of art and go far beyond “traditional”. For some, traditional instruments are fine. For the rest, companies like Breedlove will always be there to offer something that breaks the traditional mold. I like that. That means that the best Breedlove guitars have yet to be made. 

Happy pickin’ from all of us here at guitaristnextdoor.com! 

DL Shepherd

Darren has been playing guitar for over 25 years and teaching guitar since High-School. He fronted the metal band Suddenly Silence in the early 2000’s, and also achieved recognition as an award-winning bluegrass guitarist. A native of southwestern Virginia, and has shared the stage with many big-name acts from various genres. When he is not playing one of his many guitars, he can be found riding his Harley through the mountains of Virginia. Expertise: teaching guitars, electric guitars, acoustic guitars, guitar amplifiers, guide pedals, flatpicking, bluegrass, metal, rock, and blues.
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Tyler Connaghan

One thing I’ll note with Breedlove is that because they’re crafted by hand, one-by-one, there are slight inconsistencies between models. It’s cool in a way, since you’ll always get a one-of-a-kind guitar, but just something worth noting. Your exact guitar might sound different than another that’s the same model!