Pros:Economical, looks great, nice tuners
Cons:Strings can be hard, poor instructional DVD
The Bottom Line: Great guitar for the budget-minded or beginner guitarist.
Recommend this product?
I purchased this Washburn Lyon guitar as a "real" guitar for myself. I had been learning how to play on a student guitar that I bought for my younger sister years ago. And the small size just wasn't working for me. Also, the student guitar was just poorly built and the sound was horrible.
The package was pretty nice. I liked how it came with an electronic tuner and extra strings. It also came with a bag, picks, playing strap, and an instructional DVD. I must say the DVD menus are too time-consuming to navigate and I find learning from the internet and books to be much easier. I play fingerstyle, so no opinion on the picks (You can easily replace them anyway). No capo here, although I know Lyon has one for $2.99).
Strings were a bit hard on the fingers, but as strength and callouses develop, they get easier. I have heard there are "softer" strings out there. As for sound, I think it sounds great. I've had two other people play on it and the music it makes is just wonderful. I've played on my cousin's Ibanez and her brother's Yamaha, and really can't tell much of a difference in sound. The Ibanez quality and workmanship definitely shows, but the Lyon is not too shabby for its cost.
One gripe I have with it is the fretboard. In the Ibanez and Yamaha I've played on, the fretboard appears to be a treated wood. The fretboard on my Lyon is painted black. So after playing, my nails scrape paint off. The fretboard still looks fine, but my nails are usually black for while until the paint comes off.
I've had it for half a year now and everything seems fine with it. Tuning is simple, and the guitar holds the tune well. I play everyday and I tune once a week (small adjustments here and there).
It's pretty durable as well. I keep my guitar propped against a wall on the floor (I know, I should get a stand), and it has fallen a few times, but no damage. There is also an adjusting nut at the base of the neck inside the body. I'm told that shows that the guitar can be adjusted from and string tension damage.
Anyway, I bought this around Xmas time for $60 (on sale, normally $100), so definitely a great deal, especially if you're just learning and you're not sure if you are going to stick with it. You can always upgrade later on. My cousins' Yamaha and Ibanez were not that far off in price ($100 and $250+, respectively).