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Brand/Model: LX1E Little Martin Travel
Number of Strings: 6
Hand Orientation: Left, Right
Body Material: Mahogany/Spruce top
Neck Material: Mahogany
Fretboard Material: Richlite
Price Range: Under $500
Our Rating: 9/10
Little Martin Travel Guitar Review
For a mini guitar, Martin’s LX1E sure doesn’t sport a mini price tag, but for a Martin, it’s about as mini as you’ll ever get. While this isn’t a “kid” guitar, it is traveler or parlor size. It is best for small people, younger players, or for hauling across state.
The Little Martin LX1E is not the highest quality you’ll find for a Martin, but it’s not at the bottom of the pile either. It doesn’t have a solid spruce top, but it does feature highly pressure laminated mahogany back and sides. Why is this important? It helps to keep costs low.
Laminate is also more impervious to climate damage versus real wood. Plus, it’s going to be very durable when lugging it around in airplane cabins and taxi trunks.
For a traveler size, you know you’re not going to get dreadnought impact, but it did better than what we thought it would do. It’s quite bright, but with the laminate, it’s a little difficult to get resonance. However, for a travel guitar or for a smaller person, it’s got enough oomph to get the job done.
The next aspect is its electronics. How’s this small thing going to sound plugged in? It has Fishman Isys T electronics which gives it a punch for a travel guitar.
If you’re willing to splurge for having the honor of owning a Martin, this isn’t a bad choice if you’re constantly on the go.
- Fishman electronics
- Travel size
- Durable laminate
- Solid spruce top
- Richlite fretboard
- Difficult to adjust truss rod
Martin LX1E Reviews
With this travel Martin LX1E guitar, many buyer’s are really happy with their purchase. It’s their go-to practice and knock-around guitar that has quality behind its name. Buyers reportedly admit using it more than their $1000 plus guitars!
When it comes to being on the go, buyers have zero complaints at time of writing. It holds up, takes a beating, and is less prone to warping because of the laminate.
Parents who have splurged on this Martin find that their older children end up taking ownership. Maybe it’s because of the small size, or maybe it’s just because it’s a Martin!
First time guitar buyers are also very pleased with their buy. The action comes low for newbies to get a real feel at getting started. However, for the pro player, you might be best to splurge on a more expensive Martin to really get your guitar-craving satisfied.
Alternative Acoustic Electric Guitars to Consider
When it comes to the best value, you want something that you’re going to love. If you don’t already love the sound of the Martin, then perhaps you’ll want to consider the Takamine GD30CE Acoustic Electric Guitar.
While it sports the same price point, it’s definitely not a travel size. Perhaps, this isn’t quite fair to compare, but when it comes to value, the Tak has it! It has the Takamine TP-4TD preamp system and some other great features that you can find out about the GD30CE here.
However, if the dreadnought is still too big for your liking, the Takamine GN30CE-NAT Nex Cutaway Acoustic-Electric Guitar is slightly smaller and may do you just fine!
Another travel size acoustic electric guitar under 400 bucks is Fender’s CT-140SE Acoustic-Electric Guitar. It has the Fishman Presys pickup/preamp, rosewood back and sides, solid spruce top, and an easy to play neck. It even has rolled fingerboard edges!
Did we mention that this thing is so new that so few know about it? It’s been revamped to make traveling with it easier than ever! This guitar makes our list of the top acoustic electric guitars under $500 bucks here.
If you want more acoustic-electric guitar options we have them for you – just don’t blame me if looking further just makes your decision even harder!
LX1E Little Martin Travel Guitar FAQ
What are the Dimensions of this LX1E Little Martin Guitar?
It’s body length is 15″, body width 12″, and body depth 3″. The overall length is 34″. This is quite compact and small as a travel guitar.
Does this Martin LX1E Guitar come with a Traveling Case?
This purchase does include a soft carry gig bag.
Does the Little Martin LX1E Guitar have a Truss Rod?
The only complaints came from a false belief of a missing truss rod. However, it’s in the sound hole and you’ll need a 5 mm Allen wrench to access it.
Does Martin’s LX1E Acoustic Electric Guitar have a Pickguard?
There is no pickguard manufactured on the Little Martin guitar.
Does the LX1E Martin Guitar have Strap Buttons?
Yes, there are two strap buttons found on the guitar. One is found at the neck’s heel and the other where the input jack plate is installed.
What are the Recommended Strings for this Travel Guitar?
Martin recommends using 92/8 Phosphor Bronze Medium strings on the Little Martin.
Is there a Left-Hand Little Martin Guitar?
Yes. Martin does manufacture a left-hand version of the LX1E Little Martin Travel Guitar.
What is a Richlite Fretboard?
This is a synthetic material that’s scratch, heat, and stain resistant. It’s non-toxic, doesn’t warp, and it’s made in the USA. It also has the appropriate properties for fretboard.
Hardware/Electronics You’ll Need:
The Little Martin LX1E conveniently comes with a soft gig bag for traveling with. If this is all you need, then you’re set as an acoustic guitar player. However, to get plugged in, you’ll need to see our cool guide on acoustic & electric guitar accessories to get a full list of much-needed and wanted equipment and accessories. To get you started, here’s a couple tips.
Standout Features of the LX1E Guitar:
- Durable guitar
- Easy to play
Our Verdict on the LX1E Travel Guitar
To strum it up, the LX1E Little Martin Travel Guitar is a decent buy if you’re any good. If Ed Sheeran can do it on this guitar so can you. For acoustic, pop, and contemporary folk music, “Sheer” it on with the Little Martin everywhere you go!
- While the Little Martin is our smallest guitar, it is very big on tone, quality and versatility.
- Solid Sitka spruce top
- Mahogany high-pressure laminate (HPL) back and sides