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The banjo reviews database is here to help educate people before they purchase an instrument. Of course, this is not meant to be a substitute for playing the instrument yourself!

6918 reviews in the archive.

Wildwood  Soloist Banjo Reviews

Submitted by Wildwoodmike (see all reviews from this person) on 5/12/2013

Where Purchased: private

Year Purchased: 2010
Price Paid: 1800 ($US) (bought USED)

Sound

Awesome sound great 4 string bass

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

easy setup

Setup Rating: 10

Appearance

Beautiful vine inlay superb craftsmanship!

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

This banjo will last a long long time

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

Customer Service: not rated

Components

Components Rating: 10

Overall Comments

great banjo in every respect it is very heavy

Overall Rating: 10

Submitted by fbridgeway (see all reviews from this person) on 3/30/2007

Where Purchased: Wildwood Music, Coshocton, OH

Year Purchased: 2007
Price Paid: Don't Remember historic exchange rates / currency converter

Sound

My Wildwood Soloist has a nice "pop" to it. Nice full, rich sound up and down the neck. I particularly like the bass of the fourth string. It exceeds what I was hoping for and just sparkles! I owned a Deering GDL for several years and it doesn't come close to the sound my Wildwood has. I love it!

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

I was actually at the store when the banjo arrived by Fed-Ex and the set-up was great right out of the box. Had a professional luthier look at it and he agreed. I did have Mark thin the neck a little as part of my order. I can honestly say that the neck width is especially friendly. It is VERY easy to play and I do play better on this banjo. We did lower the action a little, only because we could, but it was good from the get-go. I've made no major changes and was quite satisified as it was.

Setup Rating: 10

Appearance

I would rate the looks a twenty if it were possible. I ordered a custom Soloist. Besides the slightly thinner neck, I replaced the checkered wood inlay that decorates the resonator and neck with abalone. The result of Mark's craftsmanship is stunning! The purfling and abalone inlay far surpassed my hopes. The abalone is not only colorful, but very clear and clean. It literally sparkles. The curly maple is intricate and very highly figured. I really believe this to be one of the prettiest banjos I have every seen! I've had more compliments on the looks of this banjo in the short time I've had it, than any and all other banjos I've had in the last twenty years! Most companies have a brochure that show a product better than what one receives. As nice as Wildwood's brochures are, they don't do this particular banjo justice. I guess I have to rate it a 10 but that doesn't do it justice either !

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

Rock solid, seems built to last, sturdy and high quality!

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

Mark was very helpful with the building process and graciously answered any question or concern I had. He gave me his advice, opinions, and expertise through the entire process.

Customer Service: 10

Components

Again, everything seems top notch! I am still impressed so much with the sound and looks. The detail and craftsmanship amaze me. I don't feel like I bought a factory banjo, and I didn't. Its a hand made, American made instrument that has a very personal feel to it.

Components Rating: 10

Overall Comments

I would highly recommend the Wildwood Banjos. I feel for the intricate detail work, craftmanship, sound, playabilty, I paid a fair price. It is VERY comparable to instruments more than twice its price, and better than most. When I was trying out a different Wildwood banjo and another banjo of a different company that was more than twice the price, I had four seperate individuals listen to the two with their backs to me. They had a hard time deciding which was which. I absolutely love this banjo and plan on it being my last. I have also decided to insure it with a few other instruments I have since we play out. I'm a VERY satified customer!

Overall Rating: 10

Submitted by eknowles (see all reviews from this person) on 3/13/2007

Where Purchased: e-bay

Year Purchased: 2000
Price Paid: Don't Remember (bought USED) historic exchange rates / currency converter

Sound

Very bright sound up and down the neck, great 4th string sound. This banjo stands out in a jam. The tone is wonderful. The volume is outstanding

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

Set up with Fiberskyn head. I added snuffy smith bridge and Price tail piece. I take it every year to Janet Davis Music to have the head tightened and tuned, action adjusted. The head is very, very tight, which produces the bright sound.

Setup Rating: 10

Appearance

Beautiful work, tree-of-life MOP and abalone inlay on the fretboard. Perfling is gorgeous. This banjo stands out.

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

Everything works great and looks great.

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

N.A.

Customer Service: not rated

Components

Rim is lathed wood block -- so no tension, just responsiveness. The neck is beautiful, but the sound is the best part. Banjo is really heavy, which can be a drag when you're standing all night.

Components Rating: 10

Overall Comments

This is a great instrument with a funky bright bluegrass sound. The fibreskyn head, super tight, and maple rim give it a distinctive sound. Everyone comments on the look and the sound of this banjo.

Overall Rating: 10

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