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June 2017 Giveaway

Epiphone Masterbilt DR-500MCE - Natural Reviews

5.0 stars based on 39 customer reviews
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Sweetwater Advice

  • Ryan Beluk

    Whether I'm going direct or playing acoustic, the Epiphone Masterbilt DR-500MCE sounds great. Intonation is key for me, and the Grover Sta-Tite tuning pegs keep me right where I need to be.

  • from New York, NY May 14, 2017Music Background:

    Best acoustic I've ever owned

    I've had a Seagull, Takemine, Yamaha and a really nice Martin but this really is the best guitar I've ever owned hands down. Really resonant body, comfortable neck and built rock solid.

    I've found the strings that you put on it seems to have a much bigger effect on the sound that I've experienced before; that's actually been kind of interesting/fun to play around with.

    The electronics work well but are definitely a little different than anything I've played before and while the two separate outputs is interesting it really isn't all that useful.

    Really if the name on the headstock said Martin or Taylor this guitar would be way over $1k.

  • from southeast February 21, 2017Music Background:
    25 Year Pro Guitarist / 15 Year Luthier


    Amazing Tone from this guitar. Just research the attributes of this guitar and then compare it to many others at 4 times the price and you will find that even at 4 times the price, many fall short. From the solid woods, the bone nut and Saddle, the hand carved deep set Dovetail neck joint which is glued in using Hide glue, the Grover Open gear tuners, the Esonic2 Preamp and two pickup system, not to mention the quality of the overall build, You`ll be hard pressed to find a better guitar at whatever the price. Sure, it doesnt have fancy artwork or dazzling LED lights....but it has amazing Tone and the playability is awesome.

  • from FL December 3, 2016Music Background:
    Simi - Pro

    Sweet Guitar

    Ok, Guys..I've owned this guitar for a couple of weeks now , this is the finest acoustic guitar I've ever owned , the balanced sound is just pleasing to my ears, and the workmanship and solid wood construction is 5- star quality,the action is comfortable not too high not too low, it sounds really good "plugged in" as well as acoustic with a SM -57 in front of it...just buy one and see what I'm talking about

  • from November 3, 2016Music Background:
    Intermediate acoustic flatpicker

    10 out of 5 Stars

    A simple setup and some decent strings was all it took and this puppy is a lifer. Can't wait to hear how the solid top, back and sides open up over time. The only downsides were; NANOmag pickup had to be reset as was too high compared to fingerboard extension and choked upper frets, and 14-17th frets needed levelling a re-crowning (yes, I know this guitar is 'plek'd' - but as my luthier explained - timber (especially 'new') is not an inaminate object. It will setlle, and to this end there was a slight 'rise in tongue' on these frets due to the settling of the neck and fingerboard extension at the body join.

    Ultimately, a superbly 'bilt', amazing sounding guitar that will outlast me, and probably my kids. Ten points on this one, and congrats on a cheeky nod to the 'house of stathopoulo' with this vintage recreation.

  • from Mancelona, MI August 10, 2016

    Everything I expected and More

    I don't have the experience many likely have with acoustic guitars but I cannot say I have heard or played a better guitar. It is just right in size, and plays what seems to be perfectly to me. I have heard Martin, Taylor, Guide, Ovation, Takamine, and even Gibson guitars which cost several times the price that these Masterbilt DR-500MCE do and not sound any better than this guitar to my ears anyway. Of course it goes without saying Sweetwater's service is unparalleled.

  • from LIttle Rock, AR July 13, 2016Music Background:
    Professional, Guitar Teacher

    Fantastic Quality

    I've owned a number of guitars from several major brands. I never seem to disappointed with Epiphone. The finish and wood were flawless. The sound was better than expected. The value is fantastic. You get a lot of features for a great price. It arrived perfectly set up from Sweetwater. A local vendor here had this model on the floor. I played it and I was unimpressed. Our local vendor seems to take guitars out of the box and throw them on the shelf. I was a bit hesitant but I ordered from Sweetwater. Their 55 point check up is for real! The guitar arrived clean and pleked by Epiphone. After a quick tune, onboard, the sound was marvelous. I did not go wrong. Sweetwater stands by its stuff and customer service is fab. You get an extra two year warranty too. You'll love this guitar.

  • from STREETSBORO, OH April 18, 2016

    Great Value

    I have had a Martin D35 for 40+ years and I was attracted to the pickup system of this guitar. I was not disappointed. It will never replace my D35 but it sounds great either acoustically or amplified. I ran it through separate amps with individual chorus pedals and the true stereo sound just blew me away. For the price, you cannot do better. I recommend buying a couple battery pkgs if you are like me and play them until they say hey, I give up

  • from Ely Minnesota April 10, 2016Music Background:
    Semi-pro and recording lead singer/song writer/rhythm guitar

    Better than expected by far.

    This is the first guitar I`ve ever bought online, and I could not be happier with how it all went down. Greg Savino was helpful and understanding from the start, and he provided the info I needed without hesitation. The guitar arrived on time, and right out of the box I knew I had made a great choice. I can`t say if it`s due to the "Plek`d system Epiphone has used for The fret set up or not, but this sounds and plays as well of better than the high end Taylor`s my life long best friend and band mate/songwriter uses. When I let him have a go at playing it, he couldn`t believe what I paid for it. I had read some negative reviews of the early Esonic system for this guitar, but they were from way back. The positive reviews since, made up my mind it was worth a try. I have now used the Esonic system direct into my recording system, plus into my live amp set up and it shines like you wouldn`t believe. I chose the Masterbilt because of those positive reviews and the fact I own 5 other semi-hollow big bodied Epiphone`s. It was time to add to my acoustic guitars, and by this time I figured on spending at least $2500...... This guitar is the real deal, and a steal at this price. If you are looking for a fantastic sounding guitar with really nice sounding amplification qualities, not to mention the ease of playing, do not hesitate to give this a go. By the way, I`m a heavy rhythm player, and this guitar can not only take it, but take it well. No wonder they don`t stick around the stores long! My thanks to Greg and Sweetwater for the experience of buying through you, and the follow up that came with the purchase. I`ve already thrown my hat in for another of the Masterbilt guitars. I love this guitar, and look forward to getting the next model I want. It also nice to know where I`ll buy it.

  • from N.C. December 1, 2015

    Great Guitar!

    This guitar has the sound that says "Quality". I played some guitars at twice the price that didn't sound this good. And it's ready to play right out of the box, perfect setup, low action. The sound will blow you away and it's going to get better as it ages. A beautiful guitar, very well made. The electroncs are as good as any I guess, but don't impress me that much. It has such a great sound, I usually play it unplugged. I bought a gator dreadnaught case with mine but would recommend the Epiphone hard case. Not happy with the Gator case.

  • from Anchorage, AK March 29, 2015

    Great Guitar!

    This is my third guitar from Sweetwater. I was apprehensive, but kept coming back to this guitar. I wanted a solid wood acoustic, but didn't want to spend a fortune. After all of the positive reviews, I purchased it. As soon as it arrived, I inspected it closely. Very nicely set up with a super comfortable low action. The first strum convinced me I made the right choice. Way more bass than my Taylor 214ce, and better action out of the box. Well balanced sound, nice electronics, solid tone woods, no blemishes or finishing flaws that I can find. IMHO, worth more than the purchase price, provided it proves to be durable. If you are debating this purchase as I was, take a chance, this one is a sweet guitar!

  • from March 27, 2015

    Great Quality At Any Price Point

    This guitar is a fantastic buy. I have owned a few acoustics, one of them costing almost three times the price and the Masterbilt smokes them in both playability and sound. A buddy of mine is a professional recording and touring musician out of Nashville. He plays and endorses a really high end acoustic and his words to me when he tried out my DR 500 were Wow! I don't want to put it down. I knew I liked it but, after that I knew it was a keeper. Way to go epiphone, this ones a winner.:)

  • from Leavenworth, KS January 21, 2015Music Background:
    50 years of practice playing the guitar.

    Epiphone DR-500MCE - Natural

    This was my very first purchase from Sweetwater. I have purchased guitars online from other dealers with mixed results. I hate buying a guitar without trying the exact guitar out first. But I thought I would give them a chance. I know that they say the do a 55 point inspection on every guitar they receive before it is shipped to the customer. After talking with the Sales Engineer Aaron, I was assured that when I received it that it would be perfect. And it was!

    The guitar was shipped to me by Federal Express and I found myself constantly going back to the tracking page to see where my guitar was at and when it would arrive. The tracking page said it would be here today at noon. The driver pulled up in front of the house at noon. Amazing! I inspected the outside of the box before I accepted it and it appeared to be intact. Upon opening the box, I found the guitar to be perfect!

    The guitar was nicely set up and easy to play with very good tonal qualities. It really surprised me that the guitar was perfectly in tune even after shipment. I plugged the guitar into my Fender Acoustasonic 150 and was beautiful.

    I have purchase many guitars over the years and I must say this is the best acoustic I have owned so far. It even plays and sounds better than my '69 Gibson Hummingbird!

    Kudo's to Epiphone, Sweetwater, and Aaron for making this buying experience a pleasure. I highly recommend this guitar and Sweetwater.

  • from Sarasota, FL December 26, 2014Music Background:
    50-year hobbyist

    A very pleasant surprise

    I bought this on the recommendation of a friend (thanks Larry!) who had auditioned many acoustic/electric guitars recently. It's a first for me to buy an instrument sight unseen--but, I'm so glad I did! Fit and finish is much more than I was actually expecting at this price point. The added bonuses of an on board tuner, stereo preamp and dual pick-ups puts it in a class by itself.

    Action and playability was very good right out of the box. The strings sounded a bit dull (nothing new there for factory stringing) and my playing style begged for a bit lighter action. I took the saddle down 1/16" and restrung with Martin SP lights. Boom! Clarity, projection and action now approached perfection.

    I would highly recommend this instrument to anyone considering acoustic/electric guitars at 2 to 3 times the price. You will not be disappointed.

  • from New Knoxville, OH November 12, 2014Music Background:
    Recording Engineer and music as a hobby

    A pleasure to play

    A friend of mine has one of these and told me to check it out. I'm glad I did. After playing several acoustics in the showroom (some in the same price range and some 200 - 300 dollars more), I kept going back to the Epiphone. It had great action, great tone, and the fact that it is all wood quality construction is just awesome. The electronics give me great flexibility of sounds as well with 2 pickups and stereo ability. Get one!

  • from Athens, AL November 4, 2014Music Background:

    Couldn't be more pleased.

    Not being able to get my hands on it to try it out, I took a chance and bought it because of all the great reviews I read about it. The reviews didn't lie, this is one awesome guitar. It looks better than any picture I've seen of it. It plays like a dream and the tone is killer, especially for a guitar in this price range. I now have a guitar that I can enjoy for the rest of my life and that will probably even get better sounding through the years. To anyone thinking of buying this one, go ahead and pull the trigger, you will not be disappointed.

  • from Centennial, CO June 28, 2014Music Background:

    Very Nice!

    The sound is fantastic, very warm and full. Not that Tinny sound I here some much of these days in high end guitars. Guitars costing much more than this. The action is sweet, a joy to play... its hard to put down.

  • from Prescott Valley, Az June 16, 2014Music Background:
    Just a Hobbyist. I play for my wife, for my grandkids, for my family, for some of my friends, and for myself.

    I love this guitar!

    Great playability, with true, rich tones that brighten the overall sound. Whether playing acoustic or amped, you will continue to be amazed. I don't buy items on a whim. I take my time, maybe too much time to decide. I read reviews and watched videos. I played this guitar and others. I couldn't be more happy with my choice. I choose Sweetwater the same way. And I couldn't be more happy.

  • from White Sulphur Springs, WV June 2, 2014Music Background:
    Amature musician for 50 years

    Even beter than I expected

    Before I purchased my Epiphone Masterbuilt DR-500MCE, I did a lot of research. Checking out different forums and watching videos on You-Tube. So I figured that it was going to be a pretty good guitar, but I really didn't expect it to be this good.
    This guitar has the best action that I have ever seen on an acoustic guitar, and the sound is amazing. It sounds great played acoustically, but when it is plugged in, it will really blow you away. Also it stays in tune, forever.
    As always, Sweetwater, and Katie Stockman were outstanding in their service. They are absolutely the best company that I have ever dealt with, and Katie, she is simply the best!!

  • from Thousand Oaks, Ca. May 14, 2014Music Background:
    Thirty years as a regular semi-pro player.

    Two Years in And Loving this Guitar

    I was looking for a guitar at this price-point so that I could leave my old Gibson home when I tour. Found one of these by accident when I was looking at Takamines and Seagulls. i kept coming back to this thing. It just spoke to me in some way. I bought it, fell in love, and haven't picked up my other acoustics in two years.

    This is simply the best all-around acoustic I've ever owned. I've become a better player since I got it. I just love the tone when I romp on it and play it hard. Pull-offs sound loud and clear, and there is a lot of subtle variance to be had by playing softer or stronger.

    It's bright enough, but what it really is, is warm. I can't explain it. it just has a wonderful tone. And the build-quality and finish are top-notch.

    Sounds great plugged in, but there is not very much difference in sound between the two pickups.

    My one gripe is an intermittent howl from the pre-amp, but I think that it's only a loose wire. Really ... these Masterbilt guitars are an amazing deal. Get one.

  • from Grayson, GA USA April 3, 2014Music Background:
    Non-Pro; Praise & Worship Band; Guitar Enthusiast 30+ Years

    Believe The 5-Star Reviews! Get One Before They Are Gone!

    It has been a couple of weeks since I got this guitar from Sweetwater. Prior to that, I searched the internet for a good but affordable acoustic-electric to add to my collection (I already have 2 acoustics, 6 solid-body electrics, 1 bass). And since I do mostly Christian Music I felt that I need a real acoustic-electric and not just a plain acoustic guitar equipped with a sound hole pick-up. I spent hours going over YouTube videos, guitar magazines' and owner's reviews and comments. And finally settled on this one - the Indonesian-made Epiphone Masterbilt DR-500MCE in Vintage Sunburst. And honestly, I could not be happier. It is beautiful. classy and well-crafted with premium tone woods and components. Mine came Plek'd too - that alone is a 100-dollar value. The tone that comes out of this all solid wood guitar is unbelievable. And the playability is absolutely exceptional - the neck is smooth as well as the buzz-free frets. I am used to a 12" radius but I like the 14" radius of this one too. Since I got it, I have been playing everyday until 3 in the morning or until my fingers are sore. I cannot get enough of this guitar. Sometimes I would just open the guitar case and stare at it. I cannot believe it. Did I just get a good one? It stays in tune especially the G string. I have only tried the eSonic dual Shadow pick-up system using its mono output hooked up to my Line 6 Spider IV 75 electric guitar modelling amp. And the sound is already natural, balanced and sweet., at least to my ears. And it says this guitar really comes alive when used in stereo mode. Wow! That is another plus that I can look forward too. But, for now I am very happy that I decided to go for this Epiphone Masterbilt DR-500MCE. This guitar will be with me for life. In fact, I am so happy, that I am already thinking of getting another one - either the DR-500MCE in Natural or the EF-500RCCE which is Rosewood-Cidar combination. I just have to get another one before they stop making them. Seriously, these guitars fly off the shelf pretty fast. To Epiphone and to the highly-skilled luthiers and craftsmen out there in Indonesia my sincerest THANK YOU! And also to my personal sales engineer, Dave Brow. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

  • from latrobe,pa March 18, 2014Music Background:
    budding rockstar

    Carson Rocks!!

    First time customer. They hooked me up with a personal sales consultant who has been more than helpful. It almost feels like he works for me. My guitar arrived one and a half days after placing my order; incredible! Overall can't say I have ever seen a customer experience like the one from Sweetwater. Oh and the candy was a "sweet" touch.

  • from Queens March 9, 2014

    This guitar sings to you

    I own two Taylors and an ovation, I wanted a dreadnought saw this and the price was right what the heck, I cannot believe the price of this guitar. Fit and finish is flawless, Plays wonderful I am blown away with this guitar I could not put it down. At first it was a little stuffy I let it sit overnight in the air and it just opened up acoustically, very well balanced tone this guitar sings to you when you play it. My thanks to Sweetwater guitars and my sales engineer Bob Furlong this man knows his guitars this is my sixth guitar I purchased from them you can't go wrong with the 55 point inspection.

  • from firth, NE March 8, 2014Music Background:
    in a band that just wants to party

    This is better then the Taylor 314 I wanted!

    I looked for 2 years for a acoustic. Already had a great elec, a Parker. And everyone who has played a Parker knows that the Parker neck is the best there is, period. Ive already tested it. So my standards are high. REVIEW
    9.5/10 Neck (most important). The neck plays as good as my other choice neck, the taylor 314, for a third of the price! My wife wouldnt let me spend that much!
    10/10 Looks. This guitar is beautiful! Every woodgrain is just hypnotizing! The pics do not do it justice, you can stare at it for hours!
    10/10 Tone. This is what an acoustic should sound. soft and beautiful or dirty and rough, every note has amazing sustain from the all wood. I think the Dm I played last night is still ringing out!!
    10/10 Action. I asked my sweet guy Josh to make sure action is low, I dont know if they adjusted the truss or not, but bam, its perfect! Not bend near head like the guys at GC told me they should be (genius he was) straight and super low at neck, and very low at body.
    in all, I am happy I didnt get a Taylor. To much money. This is perfect, and if you are looken, get the 24 months financing and pay 30 a month for it! Redonkulas for this wood axe!! Happy picken!

  • from May 29, 2013Music Background:
    Semi-Pro Musician


    Words can not describe how amazing this guitar is. I can not believe it is only selling for $599. I have other guitars more higher end that don;t play or sound as good as this axe. HOLY CRAP! The electronics are far superior to anything I have ever played and I've played and owned some of the best. I am going to buy a second one as back up and get rid of my other. I'm tempted to buy the next model up. Sweetwater is the BOMB! They have the best customer service, after sale customer service and attention to details. I will never buy from another music supplier again!

  • from United States May 18, 2013Music Background:
    Life long Hobby for pleasure and worship.

    Enjoying my new Guitar..

    This guitar is really nice. I have been playing since teenage years off and on. I look at playing as a life time experience and this new DR-500MCE will be a life time keeper. Sounds great both with and without amp. and the action is very nice. Workmanship and quality is very nice. I am not a professional or expert when it comes to comparing instruments... but I have tried many guitars in music shops to see how more expensive guitars feel and sound. In my experience this guitar is one of the best I have ever put in my hands and I am enjoying it and look forward to many years of playing.
    When it comes to online service... Sweetwater seems to live up to their reputation of high customer satisfaction. I have been completely satisfied with their service and appreciate the way they do business. I had no problems with service and the guitar and case were perfect when they arrived. Thank You...

  • from Minnesota March 25, 2013Music Background:
    Hobby player..

    Awesome guitar!

    I could not believe how beautiful this guitar was. And right out of the box there wasnt any improvement I could make to the action or playability! I could not be happier with the tone. The esonic makes it sound unlike any other guitar. Pefect!

  • from Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA December 16, 2012Music Background:
    I've played since my hands were big enough to play a guitar...about 53 years

    Amazing tone and playability...I might sell my Martin!

    This Masterbuilt DR-500MCE just might be the best acoustic guitar I have ever played. It matches my Martin for playability, tone and for keeping in tune. I played this guitar right out of the box, as it was STILL in tune, although just a touch sharp according to my ears. I retuned it with the built in eSonic pre-amp tuner after 20 minutes of playing and it stayed tuned after I played it through the entire “The Wall” album, both CD’s. I am now glad that I have to repair the cracks on the Soundboard of my Alvarez, (the reason I bought the cheaper Masterbuilt!) which is a fine guitar on its own. This guitar is truly amazing.

  • from Minneapolis, MN July 25, 2012Music Background:
    Hobbyist & student

    This Guitar Sings!!!!

    When I first purchased this guitar I was a bit skeptical. I played a lot of guitars before I settled on this one. I didn't know about Sweetwater before I purchased this guitar, wish I had. First off the picture of the "Natural" top appears to be the wrong picture. My DR-500MCE is a cutaway like the picture of the "Sunburst" model. It has the eSonic2 system in it and I could only play it through the "mono" 1/4" jack. (it has two 1/4" jacks.(One from the Nanoflex pup under the saddle, the other from the Nanomag pup at the end of the fret board so you can separate them and play in stereo). When I plugged this guitar into a 2 channel amp, with separate cords WOW! It just cam alive! The eSonic2 allows you to control both pups from pots with center detents as well as a sliding mixer, volume ctrl, and tuner that mutes the guitar when in use. I've never experienced this kind of sound before. The Yamaha 12 string I have (A FGX model) only has one pickup, which for a 12 string is probably enough. This Epi really sings when plugged in separating the pickups. It is also buttery smooth to play. When I first started playing it I didn't want to stop. I played it alongside other, more expensive guitars and it held its own. I'm no pro but the sound from this sure is.

  • from January 27, 2016

    Great Guitar

    Great guitar for the money. This is my first acoustic guitar and I played a lot of different guitars from other manufacturers like Martin,Dean, and Yamaha. This one came out on top and plays great. I don't think for the money that there is much on the same level.

  • from TN December 12, 2015

    This Thing Is a Steal

    I don't know how they can make these Masterbilt Epi's for under $700. It's everything you want in an acoustic. All solid wood construction, Bone nut and saddle, open back Sta-Tite Grover tuners, Beautiful binding all the way around the guitar, and a great pickup system for amplified playing. I used to not like cutaways because they sounded like they lost a little projection volume to me, but not this one. It sounds rich and full is it's a breeze to play (it's Plek'd). If I had to nit pick and think of one thing I don't love, it would be that I wish it had a Nitro finish instead of poly, but I don't even care about that really. It's all solid wood so it's only gonna get better with age anyway. There are acoustics out there that are more expensive than this one that only have a solid top and laminate back and sides. You can get by with a few mistakes when playing an electric guitar, but an acoustic is either good or it's not and this is a quality instrument I plan on keeping forever. So if you're in the market for a good acoustic in the $500-$1,000 rang, you can't do any better than this thing. I'm surprised this guitar doesn't cost $1,000 or more because it's worth it. Yes, it's that good.

  • from Cheboygan mI November 27, 2015Music Background:
    I'm 63 and have been playing since my Junior High dance, I may not be great, but I know a good sounding guitar when I hear one

    Kind of shocked

    My friend bought it and he told me I was going to be amazed, I told him it was an Epiphone, it just can't be that nice then I played it, yes I was surprised. I picked up the phone called Sweetwater and ordered one. I needed a forth guitar on stage, One for lower tuning ,one to keep kapo'ed for certain songs, One for everything else along with my Godin, I have a Guild that is to nice not to keep on stage and my Martin is so crispy I have to use it.
    I've decided I'm going to keep my Martin Kapo'ed, and use my new Epiphone as my main guitar along with my Godin, it really is that nice, I am shocked

  • from Southern California June 9, 2015Music Background:

    NICE sound for a great price!

    One of the nicest sounding reasonably priced acoustics out there! Really resonant, warm sound with nice electronics (mahogany sounds warm thanks to nature, not man). You can dial in almost any sound you like with the dual pick-up system. My rhythm guitar player has a 20 year old Martin D-28 and he likes playing this beast of mine better than his own REALLY EXPENSIVE Martin. Maybe he's just a fool, but just maybe he has a point?? I agree with him. You can always spend a LOT OF MONEY on esoteric specialty features of the REALLY EXPENSIVE brands, but when push comes to shove, all you really want is great sound, great playing action, and if you are really lucky, some really good electronics to project that sound beyond the acoustic sound plane. This guitar delivers that, and at a fraction of the cost of the ESOTERIC HIGH PRICED BRANDS.
    My guitar set-up man couldn't get over how good this beast was, especially for the money. As he put it, "This one's a keeper". I couldn't agree more. (By the way, all my guitars visit my set-up guy immediately after purchase. He's a magician, and if you are lucky, you have one of your own. ALL GUITARS need to be set-up by a really good Set-up/Luthier person, IMHO. I you haven't used one, find one today!!)

    You can spend a LOT MORE money for other brands, but from a working or recording musicians perspective, I really don't think you will find a LOT BETTER sounding guitar than this. Maybe a slight better in the $2500 and above range, but hey, this one is 1/4th their price. Go ahead and spend a whole lot more, it just leaves more of these guitars for real working players, who really depend on sound, playability and reasonable pricing. I buy guitars for the sound they make, and for playing, not for the name on the headstock. How about you? By the way, I have never played or heard a 5 star rated guitar, and I have played guitars costing upwards of $20,000. They all have their good and bad points. It's just what your ears hear, and what YOU like.

  • from Bakersfield,CA April 17, 2015Music Background:
    used to, didn't for too long, trying to again. i'll get there.

    keeping this one

    i will try to be objective. loved the vintage stained spruce. it does have an old look to it. the Epiphone logo and headstock is what i imagine would be on an older guitar. the tuners work perfectly and they also have a vintage feel/look to them.
    the neck is satin to touch and the frets are filed where you don't feel them scratching your hand.
    double body and bound neck. solid spruce and mahog. rosewood bridge, fretboard and bone nut and saddle.
    the electronics are something new to me on an acoustic. 2 pkps with eq, phase volume and tuner. i think i read that it's a MASTERBILT since each guitar is built from start to end by only one builder, in Indonesia. i may be hearing things.
    i play it through my Fender Mustang lll. handles that very well. tweak this and that and it sounds great.
    all this for just over $500 and the good service from SW. win win.
    i just had my tech friend put some 10's on it and a setup. as soon as he took it out of the case and strummed and picked it, he was very impressed. and, he builds guitars. i'm keeping this guitar to hand down to my kids.

  • from New Mexico February 27, 2015Music Background:
    Semi Pro turned hobbyist 50+ years playing

    DR 500 MCE

    I wanted to like this guitar and I do! Traded in my Taylor 714CE recently, great guitar but never could get the action low enough. After spending 3K on it I wasn't happy. I am an electric player for the most part and spoiled by those electric necks. Sweetwater did the 55 point inspection which I love, but the factory spec on these is 7/64 at the 12th fret, still too high for me. Shaved the bridge, adjusted the truss rod, put on some lighter Daddario strings and I am a happy camper. Real wood makes a sweet tone and as other reviewers have mentioned when you plug it in the tone is just wonderful. I bought it to be a beater for my office studio and thought it would not deserve a case; after a day I decided it was nice enough to get a case for it! Some very minor finish flaws at the neck, and the action is a little high or I would give it a 5. If you take it to the coffee shop and it gets stolen you won't cry like you would if they stole your Taylor; and it sounds just as good to me for a lot less moola!

  • from Torrance, CA December 18, 2014Music Background:
    Singer/SongwritierArtist for JuMPsongs. Pro Musician and Recording Studio/Live Engineering.

    Beautiful sound and look

    Originally purchased a EF-500 and love it but my smaller hands could not live with the wider V neck profile so now I'm selling it after buying the DR-500MCE. To me sound/tone is even more awesome then the EF and the neck is much more friendly to my hand. Arrived in remarkably great shape and I could not find a flaw anywhere on the guitar. I've had it for a month and so far I'm lovin' it.

  • from Nappanee,IN October 13, 2014Music Background:
    Preforming musician


    Love this guitar! Great craftsmanship, very smooth action on the fret board. The electronics are awesome with the eSoinc-2, not having to change over guitars as much. The tuner is alittle different and a little hard to see on stage, but getting use to it. Took it out of the shipping box and it was still basically in tune. (that's after 2 days of freight)
    It is a beautiful instrument and have no regrets on the purchase. Tried all the major names before the purchase and I have to say sounds as good as a Martin and plays as smooth as Taylor.
    Thanks to Matt at Sweetwater for making this a very easy and fast transaction. Matt sent me pictures of my guitar prior to shipping and it arrived just like the pictures showed. Needed it for a Thursday night gig, ordered it on Monday and the case on Tuesday and got both before the gig. (Recommend buying the Epiphone case with this one)
    Looking forward to years of preforming and recording with this Guitar.

  • from Dalhart, TX August 28, 2014Music Background:
    Church praise band, hobbyist

    Best value in an all solid wood acoustic/electric!

    After weeks of playing Seagulls, Breedloves, and low-end Martins and Taylors, I was about to buy a Taylor 214ce, but then I played this Epiphone, and I was blown away by the warm, rich tone. It has the full, deep lows of a Martin, with the bright highs of a Taylor. And all solid wood for $599! Are you kidding me?! The Taylor was $999 and only had a solid top. Bone saddle and nut help the tone too. The electronics are amazing! The Nano flex and Nano mag pickups give such a wide spectrum of tones, including the natural, unplugged acoustic tone. I believe this 2 pickup system will revolutionize the industry - other manufacturers will soon follow. With nice Grover tuners, mother-of-pearl inlays, vintage looking binding, an attractive head stock - the guitar is more beautiful than the pics can show. I love the satin finish on the neck, though the neck is just a bit on the thick side. It is not as slender and playable as the Taylor necks, which is why I didn't give 5 stars - and the bridge pins are very cheap plastic, but for the price, they had to cut corners somewhere. I just used the bone pins from my old acoustic. It is the best value you will find at this price. Easily equal to or better than guitars twice the price. For $599, you cannot go wrong. You will love this guitar!

  • from Dallas May 15, 2014Music Background:
    Music writer, pro musician, I play all drums,bass, and guitar.

    Epiphone but s worth it.

    Even though this is an epiphone, I find this plays as easy as a Gibson. The looks are overwhelming. It is Masterbuilt series, and the head stock reminds me of an antique.
    The Rosewood fretboard with the inlayes and Epiphone name on headstock, I am not sure if it is Pearl or not but it looks it.
    I was impressed with the condition it arrived in. Wasn't setting in a store for everyone to play. I have never bought a guitar without first getting the feel. Then there is the additional cost of changing strings, set up, etc. I may change my music store.

  • from The beautiful Finger Lakes region of central NY May 19, 2015Music Background:
    Old man Blues!!

    DR-500 Sweetness!!!

    I bought this guitar the year they came out with the Sunburst finish, and I love this guitar, now... when I first got it, it had a buzzing issue on a couple strings, so I took it for a pro setup, only to find out that it needed a fret level and dressing. Really Epiphone? Right out of the box?? Shame on you!! But I spent the money to have the frets dressed and leveled, and now it's one of my favorite acoustic guitars. But buyer beware, these Chinese Epiphones are hit or miss for quality.

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