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!
7160 reviews in the archive.
Where Purchased: EBay
Year Purchased: 1996
Price Paid: 800 ($US) (bought USED)
Nice, loud sound. Rings beautifully. I play Scruggs-style, mostly, but like to strum on occasion - it works well for that also. I'd like a little more 'twang', but that may be a matter of setup. Still kind of new to the game.
Sound Rating: 9
The instrument was used when I bought it and, as a beginner, I did some homework to see what I might safely adjust on my own. I put on a new set of strings and tightened the head - I don't think the previous owner tried as it was fairly loose. The operation was very simple, however.
Setup Rating: 9
No complaints at all about the appearance. I've always had used instruments and this is the most pristine of them all, and it has held up well.
Appearance Rating: 10
The hardware seems of high quality. Nothing has gone wrong in the few years I've had her.
Reliability Rating: 10
Have not dealt with customer service, though the website is fairly well laid out.
Customer Service: 9
After some experience with a low-end acoustic guitar and banjo the tuners alone please me no end: it's a luxury to play for an hour or two without having to retune.
Components Rating: 10
I'd certainly recommend this banjo at the price. If it were stolen I'd do some comparison shopping as I'm a bit more experienced now than when I got her. This make and model would certainly be towards the top of the list.
Overall Rating: 9
Where Purchased: Fazio's Frets And Friends
Combination tuner, metronome, and tone generator. It's a bit sensitive to background noise, so if you're going to be tuning up with a group of musicians you may be better off with the clip-on style that tunes by vibration. As a relative beginner most of my tuning is done solo so the MT9000 works well, and the LCD readout is very nice. The metronome feature is proving handy in developing technique.
Overall Rating: 9
'Sterotypes' 6 min
'Pickups on Openbacks??!!' 40 min
'Lola - Scruggs Style' 52 min