Vintage VRC-800AMF electro resonator review

  • £429
The Vintage VRC-800AMF electro resonator has an eye-catching satin amber finish.

MusicRadar Verdict

Vintage can't seem to decide who this is for. The strings don't match the pickup and what for many is a slide guitar is set up as a standard electric. Nicely made though…

Pros

  • +

    Good build; acoustic sound/playability.

Cons

  • -

    Uneven output; action's too low for slide.

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Vintage already has three acoustic resonators and one National-style biscuit-bridge cutaway electro resonator in its range.

But the company has recently added this good-looking Dobro-style spider-bridge electro resonator with 12-frets-to-the-body neck joint, 626mm (24.6-inch) scale length, Telecaster-style covered neck single-coil and knurled-knobbed volume and tone controls.

The maple laminate body has some strong flaming, especially on the back, enhanced by the satin amber finish. With a maple neck that's not over wide (42.6mm at the nut with 54mm string spacing at the bridge) it feels good, quite electric solidbody-like and only the mismatched heel stack points to its cost-effective origins.

Sounds

Unplugged, the 800 certainly captures a resonator's honk. It's not over loud for the style and a little more refined than many metal-bodied National-styles. Plugged in however, the bronze wound strings are not suited to a magnetic pickup designed for nickel wounds.

The output is very unbalanced, the wound strings much quieter than the plain treble B and E and the Tele pickup sits some way from them. Then there's the electric set-up, which negates all but the very lightest of slide techniques.

Dave Burrluck is one of the world’s most experienced guitar journalists, who started writing back in the '80s for International Musician and Recording World, co-founded The Guitar Magazine and has been the Gear Reviews Editor of Guitarist magazine for the past two decades. Along the way, Dave has been the sole author of The PRS Guitar Book and The Player's Guide to Guitar Maintenance as well as contributing to numerous other books on the electric guitar. Dave is an active gigging and recording musician and still finds time to make, repair and mod guitars, not least for Guitarist’s The Mod Squad.