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Brand/Model: Fender FA-115
Number of Strings: 6
Hand Orientation: Right
Body Material: Basswood/Spruce top
Neck Material: Nato
Fretboard Material: Laminated Hardwood
Price Range: Under $200
Our Rating: 9.8/10
Fender FA-115 Acoustic Guitar Review – New!
Fender has had the backs of beginner guitarists for a long time. Their entry-level line for guitars under $500 is no small list. But, their newest model hits the market at an even lower price, under $200, as the extremely popular predecessors make their way out. There’s no more room for a laminated top for beginner players – it’s time to bring in quality instruments to make quality players!
That’s right – the new FA-115 sports a solid spruce top. It’s almost too good to be true for the price. It’s unheard of! There’s practically no one else to bring “beginner” to a whole new level that other brands just can’t compete with. However, compromises elsewhere had to be made in order to pop on a solid wood top.
You still have laminated basswood for the back and sides, a nato neck, and a laminated hardwood fretboard – nothing fancy at all. But, hey! At least you’re sporting a real solid top. A few words on solid spruce: it’s strong, compliments a huge variety of playing styles, and it’s bright with a dynamic range. The sound difference is definitely going to set itself apart from other entry-level guitars.
With a solid top and dreadnought body style, you can bet the acoustics are going to be loud, defined, and strong on the mid to upper ranges. However, there will be a pleasing presence of the lower-end basses.
If you thought the solid top was the only surprise, you’d be wrong. Just when you thought things couldn’t get better, it does. The FA-115 is being offered as a beginner’s acoustic guitar pack. It might not have all the fancy dressings as the discontinued bundle, but you still get a few, nifty things.
The FA-115 is an unbelievable and welcome addition to the music market. You can bet these will go fast for the bottom-dollar price. You just can’t find a solid top acoustic guitar this low anywhere!
- Solid top
- Gloss finish
- Beginner’s accessories included
- Laminate fingerboard
Buyer’s Feedback on the FA-115 Acoustic
This guitar is set to impress, and news about it is hot off the press. It’s a big step up from its predecessor models (the FA100), and they were extremely popular before. But, the FA-115 is going to soar to fame – it’s inevitable.
We’re confident that it’s going to get its 15 minutes of fame for the duration of its release. If there’s going to be any complaints at all, it might be about the laminate fingerboard. Rosewood fingerboards are seen on some of the cheapest guitars there are, so it might be worth it to have just put one on instead of laminate. The gloss finish might be of complaint to some, but ultimately, it’s what makes your guitar oh so shiny!
Alternatives to Consider
A great example of an acoustic guitar with a solid top and a rosewood fretboard is the Ibanez AW54OPN Artwood acoustic guitar. For not much more out of pocket, you could have this gorgeous, mahogany solid top guitar. What’s different about it is its Open Pore Natural finish that sports zero clear coat! Without a finish dimming it down, resonance is going to be strong, powerful, and moving. Check it out for yourself!
However, the Ibanez doesn’t come with a whole lot. If you’re more concerned about trying to maximize every penny, the Donner DAG-1C Beginner Acoustic Guitar Bundle may be an appropriate alternative. It comes with a bunch of accessories to attract the learning musician, and the guitar itself has appeal with the cutaway. For the nitty-gritty on guitar quality, you’ll have to check out the full review on the DAG-1C! If you are still stuck for choices you can see our favorite six guitars under the $200 mark right here.
Fender FA-115 Q&A
Both guitars have varying laminate materials, but the most notable difference is the top. The FA-100 had a laminate spruce top whereas the FA-115 has a solid spruce top. The difference between real tonewood and laminate is going to be noticed in soundboard strength, acoustic resonance, and sound projection.
The bridge is laminated hardwood with white bridge pins with black dots. Tuning pegs are covered chrome that match the chrome machine heads. There is a black 1-ply pickguard glued to the soundboard.
The FA-115 comes pre-strung with Fender Dura-Tone 880L (.012-.052) strings.
The FA-115 comes with a strap, picks, extra set of strings, and a free 30-day trial to Fender Play to access online lessons to get started today.
However, it’s unfortunate to see the gig bag, clip-on tuner, instructional DVD, and polishing cloth not offered in this bundle as it previously.
With a solid top guitar, it’s probably best to invest in a hardshell case. A nylon gig bag may be good easy and convenient toting, but it won’t protect much from bumps, bangs, and knocks. You might also want to consider purchasing a wall hanger for mounting your guitar when not in use. Considering this is a dreadnought guitar, a full-size dreadnought case will fit appropriately.
There are two strap buttons on the guitar: one on the base and one near the heel.
Unfortunately, the Natural finish is the only available option currently.
The Fender FA-115 is made and manufactured in China.
Hardware/Electronics You’ll Need:
For practical and everyday use, this package comes with a strap, picks, and extra strings. Although this is supposed to a beginner’s bundle pack, it’s lacking essential items that a newbie will really find helpful in learning to play guitar. But, don’t give up just yet since we have a full list of everything you’ll forget to think of. Our full rundown on guitar accessories can give you an idea on what those essentials are and if you’ll need them or not. But, here’s our quick-list to get you thinking!
- Spruce top with X bracing
- Solid top
- Natural finish with gloss
Our Verdict on the Fender Acoustic FA-115 Guitar
To strum it up, the Fender FA-115 is one of the cheapest solid top acoustic guitars available. This model is the new and improved version that’s bound to have more success than its predecessors. With a significant improvement to sound performance and projection with a solid top, the FA-115 should be a beginner’s first choice guitar!