- Orangewood Mason Review: Is This Acoustic Worthy of Praise? - June 10, 2022
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Who doesn’t love to tinker around with a good acoustic every once in a while?
I know I do!
There’s something so refreshing about playing with an acoustic; it really helps to break up the monotony that comes with playing. Or maybe it’s just me…
Either way, I think every guitar player should have the opportunity to play an acoustic guitar once in their lifetime. But, the pricing of many acoustic guitars leaves this possibility out of the question for many musicians.
What if it didn’t have to be that way?
Orangewood Guitars made sure it didn’t have to be that way. The Orangewood Mason Live guitar made sure everyone could afford to play an acoustic guitar.
When I was shopping around for an acoustic guitar, my jaw literally dropped when I saw the pricing. I began to wonder if the Orangewood Mason would be any good.
So, I’ve decided to dedicate myself to this Orangewood Mason review. So I can share with you if this live acoustic is really worth the (very affordable) price tag.
Bottom Line Up Front:
I think the Orangewood Mason Live is a pretty good guitar if you’re willing to look past some of the potential complications that you could face. It’s lovely to play on!
Orangewood Mason Live Review
Now, let’s take a closer look at what the Orangewood Mason guitar has to offer.
When I first picked my guitar, I noticed the guitar had Ernie Ball Medium Light strings pre-installed.
I love the beautiful whale tale (at least, that’s what I think they look like) inlays on the frets. It’s a small, exquisite detail that really adds to the overall aesthetic of this guitar. Nothing too flashy, but simple enough to make it classically beautiful.
You’ll find a C-shaped neck with a 25.5-inch scale. Both the saddle and the nut are made up of bone, with a nut width of 44mm.
Just like the Orangewood Sage Mahogany guitar I reviewed recently; I love the grand auditorium cutaway of the body. The top wood is solid Sitka spruce, while the sides and the back of this guitar are made from layered Pau Ferro. That’s not all! The neck is made from mahogany, while the bridge and the fretboard are made up of ovangkol.
As far as the bracing goes, you’ll find Scalloped X bracing to support the body. To top off this beautiful masterpiece, I love the UV-cured gloss on this guitar. It honestly makes this guitar sexy.
Overall, I think the build of this guitar isn’t anything to scoff at. I’m obsessed with the style of the body because I find it so easy to play. I’m someone with smaller hands, and I normally find many necks too large to hold comfortably. However, I love the size of the neck on this Orangewod Mason live. It isn’t too thick, nor is it too thin!
I was able to comfortably wrap my hand around the neck with ease. I played this guitar for hours and didn’t have any problems feeling uncomfortable because the body was too large. Instead, I felt relaxed while holding the neck in my hands and wrapped my arms around the guitar.
Another problem I usually have is reaching the 12th fret. My hands are too small, and my reach is too small. I have some hacks to get there while playing on a larger guitar, but I’m not able to normally reach with comfort. However, with the Orangewood Mason Live, there was a little cutaway. I was easily able to reach with comfort!
The sound is *chef kiss*. The quality of the sound found in this guitar is exactly what I expect when I think of an acoustic guitar. It’s well-balanced (thanks to the grand auditorium style body) and didn’t favor highs or lows.
If you follow the great debate of Taylor vs. Martin and you’ve decided you’re pro-Taylor, I would recommend this guitar to you.
Honestly, if you’re contemplating buying a Taylor but want to save yourself some extra cash, I would recommend this guitar over any Taylor. If you’re not a professional musician looking to tour, I think this would be the perfect fit for you.
I also really love the tones this guitar produces. I think the electronics really help to support the tonewoods featured in this guitar. Unplugged, I think the projection of the Orangewood Mason Live is pretty good. I think the Orangewood Sage Mahogany did a better job with unplugged projection, but the projection on this guitar isn’t bad by any means.
As far as the electronics go on this guitar, you’ll find a Fishman Flex EQ. This is a pretty good pickup system, but it isn’t one you’ll find on higher-end guitars. I think for the price tag, this pickup is really good.
But, my favorite part about the pickup system found in this acoustic guitar is that it isn’t difficult to use. Even if you’ve never played on an electric acoustic, you’ll have no problems operating this pickup system as long as you read through the instruction manual.
Aesthetics and Accessories
With your purchase of the Orangewood Mason Live, you get a gig bag. ‘Orangewood’ is branded across the front of the gig bag, on the front pocket. This isn’t just any gig bag, either. The zippers are thick, the handle is thick, and there’s a nice level of padding. My favorite part of the gig bag is the straps that come on the back, so you can just throw it on your back like a backpack!
I really love the customization options that Orangewood offers. With this guitar, they send a pickguard inside of the gig bag. You don’t have to put the pickguard on; it’s totally up to you whether you want to throw that on there. Plus, there are other tools you’ll find inside of your gig bag.
Honestly, at this point, I don’t think you should be reading this review anymore. Just based on the points above, I think you should already be on their website checking out. But, if you’re still here (and wondering about playability), I’m here to deliver.
The playability? Excellent.
I thought I was going to catch Orangewood slipping when I started to analyze the playability of this guitar. I didn’t think Orangewood could deliver outstanding playability on this guitar, given the price point. But, they proved me wrong.
I didn’t have any problems with the action. I easily slid my hand up and down the fretboard with no friction, no rough spots, no dead spots. My hand was perfectly safe (no pain, no splinters) as I was sliding. And if you’ve played a lot of cheaper/affordable guitars before, you know what I’m talking about when I say the neck on these guitars can be mean to your hands.
However, there was one problem I ran into after a few weeks of playing. I found that the high E located on the 11th fret began to be fuzzy. I think a neck adjustment would fix this problem, but I do this is something you should be aware of when you’re shopping around.
Pros & cons
- Breathtaking design
- Amazing price
- Comes directly from the manufacturer, so you don’t have to worry about paying the middle man
- Comes with a high-quality gig bag
- Good to go straight out of the box
- Very comfortable to hold
- Stunning sound and tonal quality
- Needs a neck adjustment after a few weeks
- Only available to purchase online
Other Alternatives to Consider
Not a big fan of the grand auditorium style? The Orangewood Austen features a dreadnought shape! Dreadnought shapes are great for those seeking a sound that focuses heavily on the lower end. I think that Dreadnought shape guitars are best for people that have a larger stature and larger hands.
I think this would be a great guitar If you’re looking to have a larger sound. This would be especially important if you’re looking to perform live. so, if you’re looking for the sound of your guitar to fill up a room, I would recommend the Orangewood Austen.
If you’re looking for a
It even works great for intermediate players as well! While this is a more affordable option, it’s got a great tone and a full sound.
Want another live guitar? The Oliver Mahogany is another wonderful option to look into! It features an elegant concert shape, which means it’s got a slimmer body than the Orangewood Mason guitar. And if you’re shopping around for a child, you could always look into the Orangewood Oliver Jr!
Answer: Yes, the parts to Orangewood guitars are made in China. However, all of the parts are shipped to Los Angeles. In Los Angeles, guitar techs at Orangewood set up the guitar before shipping it to your doorstep.
Answer: No, Orangewood only ships to the United States and Canada at the moment.
Answer: Orangewood guitars do have truss rods!
Is The Orangewood Mason Live Worth the Hype?
I think so! You get way more bang for your buck out of the Orangewood Mason Live. For under $400, I think there’s so much to unpack here. I don’t think this is really a guitar you could grow out of. Even if you do decide to play professionally, I think this would be an excellent practice guitar.
This guitar doesn’t discriminate. If you’re an experienced musician or a complete