Takamine GC3CE Review & Prices

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Takamine GC3CE Review
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  • From Takamine's 2017 G series
  • Made in China
  • 6 strings
  • 25.6"'' scale
  • Flat Fretboard Radius
  • Solid Cedar top
  • Mahogany back
  • Mahogany sides
  • Mahogany neck
  • Laurel fretboard
  • Bridge pickup: TP-4T (Preamp/Active)
  • Fixed bridge
  • Acoustic Asymmetrical C Set neck
  • 19 Medium frets
  • Takamine Chrome tuners
  • Weight between 4.1lbs (1.9kgs) and 4.15lbs (1.9kgs)
  • Compare Specs >
  • From Takamine's 2017 G series
  • Made in China
  • 6 strings
  • 25.6"'' scale
  • Flat Fretboard Radius
  • Solid Cedar top
  • Mahogany back
  • Mahogany sides
  • Mahogany neck
  • Laurel fretboard
  • Bridge pickup: TP-4T (Preamp/Active)
  • Fixed bridge
  • Acoustic Asymmetrical C Set neck
  • 19 Medium frets
  • Takamine Chrome tuners
  • Weight between 4.1lbs (1.9kgs) and 4.15lbs (1.9kgs)
  • Compare Specs >

Our Scores and Tone Evaluation

Playability 78
Sound 83
Build quality 72
Value for money 83
Overall Score 78
Tone Evaluation
  • Heavy Metal
  • Hard Rock
  • Jazz
  • Blues
  • Funk
  • Country
Strengths & Weaknesses
Takamine GC3CE
  • Expensive Wood
  • Synthetic Bone Nut
  • Top Brand Pickups
  • Electronics
  • Synthetic Bone Saddle
  • Solid Top Wood
  • Cheap Fret Wire (NS)
  • No Locking Tuners
  • Made in China
  • Laminated Side Wood
  • Laminated Back Wood
  • No Compound Radius Fretboard
  • No 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • No Strap Lock

Videos

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Price: is the Takamine GC3CE a Good Deal?

Its average competitor's price is $460, which means that the Takamine GC3CE costs around 13% more than the competition. It might be due to it having additional features, but know that you can find cheaper similar alternatives. This takes into account all guitars of the same category in our database with 6 strings and Fixed bridge that are made in China.

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Your feedback

Not all guitars are created equal, and there are many important things they won't tell you about the guitar you're buying. That's why it's important to have different opinions. Here's what our visitors who have played this guitar say. If you've played it before, help others by voting for your experience below.

Weight

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Heavy
0
Slightly heavy
0
Lightweight
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Very lightweight
0

Tuning stability

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Won't stay in tune
0
Sightly unstable
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Not bad
0
Holds tune well
0
Won't get out of tune
0

Neck speed (thickness)

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Chunky
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Slightly chunky
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Balanced
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Fast
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Herman Li fast
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Neck access to high frets

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Very Hard
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Hard
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Normal
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Easy
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Very Easy
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Neck profile shape

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Baseball / U
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V
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Asymmetrical
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C
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D
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Fret edges

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Very sharp
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Slightly sharp
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Smooth
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Pickups noise

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Noiseless
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Slightly Noisy
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Noisy
0

Pickups power

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Clean
0
Slightly Hot
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Hot
0

Explore All Takamine Guitars >

Is The Takamine GC3CE Easy to Play?

The Takamine GC3CE meets 5 out of our 9 criteria items for beginner friendliness, which means that it's a good guitar to start with as a complete beginner. This takes into account the type of frets, scale length, nut width, bridge type, fretboard radius, and neck profile to determine the easiest combination for new players to get used to.

Takamine GC3CE
New Player Friendliness
  • Comfortable shape
  • Easy-to-use bridge
  • Tall frets
  • Comfortable neck
  • Soft Strings
  • Locking tuners
  • Comfortable fretboard
  • Wide nut
  • Short scale

Hand Size Comfortability

After taking into account the neck profile, scale size, fretboard radius, and nut width, we can conclude that the Takamine GC3CE's construction favors people with relatively big hands.

Nevertheless, this comes down in the end to personal preference. Make sure you test this guitar—or another one with similar characteristics—before buying.

Big Hands
Small Hands

How Lightweight is it?

We found that the Takamine GC3CE weighs between 4.1lbs (1.9kgs) and 4.15lbs (1.9kgs). This was recorded from some online retailers that publish the weight of the guitars they sell.

Scale Length

Scale length is the distance the strings will span between the bridge and the nut. It can tell you a lot about the overall playability and tone of the instrument. A longer scale length means longer distance between frets, brighter tone and more string tension—which means lower action, but more difficult bending of the strings.

Here's the Takamine GC3CE's 25.6" scale length compared to other common sizes:

Takamine GC3CE Scale Length Comparison
Takamine GC3CE's scale length (at the top) compared to other popular sizes

It's very similar to a typical long 25.5" guitar scale, but with an extra inch probably to compensate the saddle position in acoustic guitars. It should be pretty much the same as a 25.5" scale guitar.

It will allow you to strum hard without hearing so much fret buzz, even with lower tunings.

More guitars with the same scale length:

Neck Profile

Takamine GC3CE Neck Profile
Takamine GC3CE's neck profile

The neck profile tells you the thickness (neck depth) and shape in cross section. Every difference will completely change the feeling and comfortability of the neck. This is a highly subjective thing, but most players indeed prefer certain types of necks (like Cs and Ds) because they feel nice in most hands.

It has a Asymmetrical type neck. The shape is Asymmetrical. Even though it looks like a poorly-made job, it's, in fact, the shape that most naturally adapts to the arc that your hand makes when grabbing a guitar neck. You'll notice that the lower part of your palm makes a more pronounced, deeper curve while the upper part makes a more subtle arch. This is the shape that adapts the best to that natural shape of your hand.

More guitars for different hand sizes

Fretboard Radius

When it comes to fingerboard radius, personal preference will dictate which one is better for you. However, most people seem to agree that a more curved (lower) radius will make it easier to play chords while a less curved (higher) radius is better for soloing and bending.

The Takamine GC3CE has a Flat fingerboard radius. Here's an image comparing this guitar's fretboard radius to other popular choices:

Takamine GC3CE Fretboard Radius Comparison with Fender Stratocaster and Gibson Les Paul
Takamine GC3CE's fretboard radius compared to other guitars

This is common mostly in classical guitars since the strings are soft and have lower tension, so there's no need for a radius. Also, it's perfect for fingerstyle and more technical play.

Compound radius fingerboards give the best of both worlds. Unfortunately, the Takamine GC3CE has the same radius across the board.

More guitars with the same fretboard radius:

Playability compared to main competitors

Takamine GC3CE
This model
25.6'' Scale Length
Asymmetrical Neck Profile
2'' Nut Width
99'' Fretboard Radius
25.6'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
2.047'' Nut Width
99'' Fretboard Radius
25.6'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
2.047'' Nut Width
99'' Fretboard Radius
25.6'' Scale Length
C Neck Profile
1.89'' Nut Width
23.622'' Fretboard Radius
25.6'' Scale Length
Asymmetrical Neck Profile
2'' Nut Width
99'' Fretboard Radius

Nut Width

Takamine GC3CE Nut Width
Takamine GC3CE Nut Width

The Takamine GC3CE has a nut width of 50.8mm (2''). This size is found mostly on Baritone or 7+ strings guitars since they need the extra space on the fretboard. It gives your fingers the extra space you need to play without muting accidentally, but this also makes bar chords harder to perform, so bear in mind that Baritone guitars aren't for every playing style.

Frets

It comes with nickel silver frets, so they won't last as long as stainless steel frets. If you use your instrument a lot, you might need to replace the frets after a few years. But this is unlikely as most people change instruments before this happens.

More guitars with the same amount of frets:

Fret Size

Takamine GC3CE Fret Size Comparison
Takamine GC3CE's fret size (in orange) compared to other popular sizes

Finally, let's talk about fret size. Some people prefer tall frets because it's easier to press the strings and perform bends since there's less friction against the fretboard. On the other hand, some people like shorter frets because they like to touch the fretboard when playing, or because they got heavy hands and tend to press too much on the string and alter the of the note pitch accidently.

The Takamine GC3CE's frets are Medium size. With medium frets, you can feel the fretboard more than with jumbo frets, but it's still easier to press the strings cleanly than with small frets; notes might change their pitch just slightly if you press hard on the fret. Also, if you need to do some fret leveling after years of playing, you'll have some room to sand them down without having to replace them.

Playability Score

Bending & Vibrato Ease 80
Chord Playability 85
Solo Playability 70
Playability 78

Does the Takamine GC3CE Sound Good? Tone Analysis

The type of wood and even the shape of the body will have a lot of influence in the final tone of an acoustic guitar. Here's we'll talk about what kind of tone you can expect from its specs.

Wood Used in the Takamine GC3CE

Cedar wood pattern used for guitar building
Cedar Top
Mahogany wood pattern used for guitar building
Mahogany Back, Sides, Neck
Laurel wood pattern used for guitar building
Laurel Fretboard

Cedar Top: This is a softwood that is commonly used for acoustic guitars. It's known for its warm tone with strong overtones. However, there are many species so the tone and look can vary a lot.

Mahogany Back, Sides and Neck: This is the type of wood found in many top-of-the-line guitars, so that's a positive point for the build quality. This red-looking wood Mahogany is found in Africa and Central America and has great sustain and a warm tone due to its high density. The downside about this type of wood is that it's relatively heavy.

Laurel Fretboard: There are many types of Laurel, but East Indian is the most common for guitar building. Its color can vary from dark to light brown with black lines. Many people find its tonality similar to Rosewood, which favors the warmer frequencies.

Pickups

This guitar comes with pickups from one of the top brands: Takamine. So you can expect well built pickups with great sound that shouldn't need an upgrade anytime soon.

Sound Score

Sustain 80
Versatility 80
Tuning Stability 70
Sound 83

How well is the Takamine GC3CE Built?

Where is the Takamine GC3CE Made?

Knowing where the guitar is produced is a good way to know how well it's built. Some manufacturing countries are known for having higher quality standards. For example, most expensive guitars are made in the US or Japan, but there are some exceptionally great countries—like South Korea—that are building a good reputation.

The Takamine GC3CE is made in China. So you can expect lower build quality when compared to others made in Korea, Japan or the United States. Guitars made in this country are meant for mass production, which translates into less attention to detail and quality control. This doesn't mean the product is made poorly at all. Chinese products have a bad reputation since long ago, but they've definitely improved a lot the last few years.

More guitars made in China

Bridge

Fixed: The advantage of fixed bridges is that they don't require any kind of set-up. This makes it extremely easy when changing strings because you don't need to adjust anything besides tuning the guitar. Also, the fact that the bridge is directly attached to the body will help to increase sustain. The disadvantage is the lack of versatility since you can't create the same vibrato effects as with tremolo bridges.

Nut Material

Another important thing to analyze is the nut material, as it's one of the most important aspects that can affect the sound and playability of your guitar. A well-cut nut will make sure the guitar stays in tune and will make it more comfortable to play.

In this case, the Takamine GC3CE has a Synthetic Bone nut. One of the best nuts you can have is a Bone nut thanks to their rich tonality and resistance. The problem is that they're a natural material, so different bone nuts will have inconsistent tonal properties. In other words, one bone nut might not sound as well as the other even when they're made from the same piece. Synthetic bone helps with this by giving you a high-quality, consistent nut that resembles the tone produced by bone.

Build Quality Score

Quality of materials 71
Features 85
Quality Control 60
Build Quality 72

Most Popular Comparisons With The Takamine GC3CE

Takamine GC3CE Specs

General
Brand: Takamine
Year: 2017
Configuration:
Strings: 6
Made in: China
Series: G
Colors: Natural
Left-Handed Version: No
Body
Type: Hollowbody
Body Material: Solid Cedar
Bridge: Fixed
Neck
Neck Joint: Set
Tuners: Takamine Chrome
Fretboard: Laurel
Neck Material: Mahogany
Decoration:
Scale Size: 25.6"
Shape: Acoustic Asymmetrical C
Frets: 19 Medium
Fretboard Radius: Flat
Nut: Synthetic Bone
Nut Width: 50.8mm (2'')
Electronics
Switch: Way
Knobs:
Volume Controls:
Tone Controls:
Bridge Pickup: TP-4T (Preamp / Active)

User Reviews of the Takamine GC3CE

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