Epiphone Songmaker DR-100 6 String Acoustic Guitar
Gone are the days when Epiphone was looked at as just cheap alternatives to Gibson guitars. These days, they are respected for guitars that nicely balance value and quality.
Case in point is the DR-100, a true to form dreadnought that is priced incredibly low but with decent specs and cosmetics.
It doesn't stray off from the beaten path, rather everything about this guitar is familiar, from its body shape, to its playability, down to its old school appeal. This familiarity also reduces the need for technique adjustments when students level up to more expensive guitars.
Epiphone says that the DR-100 has long been their top selling acoustic guitar and based on what we gleaned from our research this could well be the highest selling acoustic in its class.
For many years the DR-100 has been the choice of many as a student guitar and a low cost 'campfire' option - that's a term used to describe guitars you can take on camping trips without having to worry too much about getting it damaged as you would with an expensive guitar.
- Body Shape: Dreadnought
- Top: Select Spruce (laminated)
- Body: Mahogany
- Finish: Gloss - Natural, also comes in Ebony and Vintage Sunburst
- Bridge: Rosewood
- Neck: Mahogany
- Neck Profile: SlimTaper
- Fingerboard: Rosewood
- Fingerboard Radius: Not specified
- Number of Frets: 20
- Scale Length: 25.5”
- Nut Width: 1.69”
Customer reviews were consistent in saying that the build quality, sound quality and playability of the DR-100 are on par with guitars in the next couple of price brackets above. Positive reviews came from students, guitar teachers, and experienced guitarists who used it for practice. And since it has a slightly smaller nut-width, it may end up being a touch more comfortable for those with smaller hands.
There were a number of reports from people who live in dry climates that the neck dried out and warped in under a year. There were also some owners who complained about their DR-100 developing fret buzz over time. It also suffers from the usual downside of a dreadnaught acoustic, it body is probably going to be too bulky for younger musicians and smaller adults.
In November 2016 we determined that this was the highest rated Dreadnought selling for under $150 and we continue to say it's a good beginner guitar, although it's not currently on our recommended list - for that please refer to our guide to The Best Acoustic Guitars For Beginners.