Even before they were acquired by Washburn, Oscar Schmidt made some pretty interesting acoustic guitars. Sure, they are not one of the top-tier brands on the market, but expensive guitars were never their specialty. On the contrary, it’s the affordable range where Oscar Schmidt delivers their best work. Oscar Schmidt OC11CE is a whole lot of guitar for not a lot of money. You get an amplified classical guitar with a cutout at a price where those features are very rarely found. This is by far one of the best bang for the buck models when it comes to, acoustic electric guitars.
Body And Neck
What we have here is a full sized classical body with a cutaway. Oscar Schmidt used spruce for the top, while the back and sides are made of Sapele. Interestingly enough, the guitar comes with black binding around the top and a fine looking rosette. All of this is topped off with a nice, comfortable mahogany neck that sports a rosewoodfretboard. What surprises the most is the fit and finish on this guitar. It looks nothing like a cheap acoustic guitar. On the contrary, it inspires confidence when you pick it up.
Hardware is one aspect where you will see price reduction at play. The bridge is a standard rosewood piece, which is pretty decent all things considered. However, the nut and the saddle are made of that generic composite. Does this mean the guitar has issues with retaining intonation or tuning? Not at all, combined with what is a fairly decent set of tuning machines, Oscar Schmidt OC11CE is capable of holding the tuning rather comfortably.
The preamp they installed on this guitar is fairly simple. At this price, you can’t really expect anything better. With that said, the preamp gives you quite a bit of versatility to work with. You get a three band EQ, which responds well to input and actually has some range unlike most cheap preamps these days. It renders the natural sound of the guitar with a decent level of authenticity, making it actually useful.
For an affordable classical guitar, Oscar Schmidt OC11CE offers a pretty balanced tone. Even though the tonewood isn’t of best possible quality, it still offers good performance. Arpeggiating chords sounds organic and wholesome, with a good amount of clarity even with the lower tones. Once you get into strumming, the sound stays pretty structured. This may not sound like much, but a lot of cheap classical guitars will just lose all and any definition when you aggressively strum a chord.
Bang for the buck, Oscar Schmidt OC11CE punches way above its price range. For a very affordable price, you get an acoustic electric guitar which offers a very balanced performance, has a good tone and feels like a quality instrument. That’s not something you see every day. If you’re a beginner on a budget looking for your first guitar, OC11CE is one of the better choices out there.