I went to a store and played the Martin equivalent, the Guild, and the Takamine. Thankfully I asked to play the Taylor 856ce even though it was more expensive. So what can you say? I mean when you play strings that feel like silk and the action is as smooth. The sound! Okay then, the sound was nice; then I tested it through an amplifier. Now we're talking totally blown away. The others didn't even come close. And I owned one of those in the 60s. But there's been a big difference in the way those were made in Hoboken compared to the way they are made today in a foreign country. Notwithstanding, I'd be proud to be playing a set with Willy Nelson and being able to say that my Taylor 12 String was made in San Diego, California! Play this guitar. It will sell your heart and soul: your wallet will have no choice, but to follow. What's it all about anyway? This sweetheart does it for you each and every day. Trust me, you'll be glad you followed your heart!