Gibson J-35 6 String Acoustic-Electric Guitar (Discontinued)
Most Gibson Acoustic guitars are priced above $2000 however there are a few priced below that and the J-35, while not the cheapest, was the highest rated of them all in November 2016. Just in case you're interested, the cheapest Gibson Acoustic at most stores is the Gibson J-15 which is also very highly rated.
Gibson first launched the J-35 back in 1936 and this version is still handcrafted in the USA just like the original.
It has the rounded shoulders of its ancestor and has a slightly shorter than usual scale length which makes it quite comfortable for players of all sizes to play compared to regular dreadnoughts.
Artists known to play a J-35 include Jorma Kaukonen of Jefferson Airplane & Hot Tuna, Wayne Sermon of Imagine Dragons and Clemens Rehbein of Milky Chance.
- Body Shape: Round Shoulder Dreadnought
- Top: Sitka Spruce
- Body: Mahogany back & sides
- Finish: Hand-Sprayed Nitrocellulose Lacquer - Antique Natural
- Bridge: Rosewood
- Neck: Mahogany
- Neck Profile: Not specified
- Fingerboard: Rosewood
- Fingerboard Radius: 12"
- Number of Frets: 20
- Scale Length: 24.75"
- Nut Width: 1.725"
- Nut: Tusq
- Saddle: Not specified
- Electronics: L.R. Baggs Element pickup and
Many customer reviews talk about this being a very playable guitar having a comfortable body shape and neck. The tone was described as "rich", "incredible" and even "old school Gibson".
In his review for Acoustic Magazine Guy Little said, "I think that the J-35 is still the winner it always was; a great, no-nonsense dreadnought with all the quality a prestigious maker can bring to it at a realistic price."
In his expert review on Harmony Central Phil O'Keefe said, "While not inexpensive, the level of quality is what you'd expect from a far pricier instrument. In that respect, it's very much like the pre-war era J-35 models - a high quality American hand made guitar that is very aggressively priced."
As Phil O'Keefe also pointed out in his review, it doesn't come with a strap button on the neck heel - you either have to install one yourself or use the old-fashioned technique of attaching your strap with laces to the headstock.
As one person said in their review, "f you've been longing for a Gibson acoustic-electric but don't have multiple thousands of dollars to invest, the J-35 is for you."
Although this was previously on our recommended list, this version is no longer available. To see our current recommendations in this price bracket, see our guide to The Best Acoustic Guitars.