Breedlove vs Martin: How These Guitar Brands Compare [2021 Guide]

If you’re curious about Breedlove vs Martin guitars, you’ve come to the right post!

I actually don’t own a Breedlove or Martin (I own an Ibanez as my main acoustic guitar).

But I have played several Breedloves and Martins and am quite familiar with these instruments.

So I thought I’d compare them here on the blog.

And if curious about other brand comparisons, I’ve done a few including:

Breedlove vs Martin: Breedlove Guitars

Breedlove is a guitar brand and manufacturer known for their high-end guitars. The company started its work in 1990 in California. Today, their headquarters are in Bend, Oregon.

The company is famous for its 6-string acoustic guitars and acoustic bass guitars. However, they also manufacture 12-string acoustic guitars and ukuleles.

One of their most important traits is the soft cutaway design. This is something they implemented from the very beginning. However, Breedlove has had a lot of different guitar models over the years. Some musicians even complain that it’s difficult to keep track of their stuff.

That said, you can usually recognize one of their many guitars designs for their body shapes and headstocks and “pinless” bridge design.

Breedlove guitars don’t have those six (or twelve) holes going through the bridge and into the body. Instead, the pinless bridge design involves inserting the string through the backside of the bridge.

What’s also interesting is that the company has its special “Tonewood Certification Program” ensuring manufacturing materials are acquired responsibly.

Finally, they have four main guitar body types. These four groups of guitars differ in size and main tonal characteristics. From smallest to the largest, these are Companion, Concertina, Concert, and Concerto.

Their main five guitar series are manufactured in the US. There are also four additional series whose manufacturing they outsourced to China and South Korea.

Best Breedlove Guitar Models

As is often the case with guitar manufacturers, their best guitars are made in the USA. This includes five series: Oregon, Premier, Legacy, Signature, and Masterclass.

Keep in mind that these are all hand-crafted high-end guitars. Guitars within a single model can differ in price and other secondary features.

Here are some of their popular models from these series:

  • Oregon Concert CE (Check out a demo of this guitar in the video below.)
  • Premier Concert CE
  • Premier Concertina CE

Aside from these, Breedlove has four more series which are its less expensive guitars. They’re imported instruments, manufactured in China and Korea.

The four non-US series are Solo, Organic, Discovery, and Pursuit. The Solo series has an interesting concept. It features a specially designed hole on the upper side, aimed directly at the player.

Here are some of the popular models in these cheaper series:

  • Organic Wildwood Concert CE
  • Organic Artista Concertina CE
  • Discovery Concertina CE
  • Discovery Companion CE

Breedlove vs Martin: Martin Guitars

When I say Martin, I’m referring to C.F. Martin & Company. This legendary manufacturer started its work back in 1833. The company got its name from the founder, Christian Frederick Martin.

Martin focuses on more traditional acoustic guitar models. In the past, they’ve also made some mandolins, electric guitars, and electric basses.

As far as track-record goes, they have a pretty long one. The main factory is in Nazareth, Pennsylvania, and it’s on the National Register of Historic Places.

Likewise, their steel-string acoustic guitars are some of the most popular in the world and are present in a wide variety of genres. Proof of their impact is the price that Elvis Presley’s old Martin D-18 was sold for: over $1.3 million!

Although limited to traditional steel-string instruments, Martin guitars are highly valued. To put it simply, many consider Martin guitars the gold standard of acoustic steel-string guitars.

Best Martin Guitar Models

Martin have made countless models over the years. These days, they have several series of guitars. These include Standard, X Series, Modern Deluxe, and Junior, just to name a few.

All of these rely on classic body shapes and sizes. We have Dreadnaught, 0, 00, OM, and others.

However, the most popular instrument is still a standard D-28. The D-18 is also a very popular instrument. It’s worth noting that these guitar models are pretty old. In fact, these are some of the longest-running acoustic guitar models on the market.

Here are some of their other popular models:

  • GPC-16E
  • HD-28
  • D-15
  • OMC-16E
  • 0-18
  • 000-28

However, they also have some less expensive guitars. These are from X, Backpacker, Junior, Little Martin, and Backpacker series. Here are some of them:

  • Backpacker (travel-sized guitar)
  • 000-X2
  • D-X2E
  • LX1E
  • Jr-10E

Breedlove vs Martin: How These Guitar Brands Compare

As two high-end guitar brands, Breedlove and Martin have overlapping price ranges. However, on average Breedlove guitars will be cheaper than Martin guitars. That said, Martin guitars have better resale value due to their famous name. Breedlove just doesn’t have the brand recognition or reputation that Martin has.

Breedlove is a significantly younger company. Their guitars feature modern, less conventional designs. Additionally, their guitar models are similar with a focus on ergonomics.

As a brand, Martin has a different focus. While their designs certainly take ergonomics into account, they’re more traditional. And you’ll rarely find a Martin in the hands of a virtuosic player. Instead, they’re more common among folk, blues, rock, and country musicians.

There are also some differences in the materials that they use. However, both come with solid wood tops. Nonetheless, the main difference is still in the overall design.

Martin guitars are more famous for their conventional models with cutaways being a bit less common. The opposite is true for Breedlove guitars with most of their models featuring a cutaway.

So we could say that Martin are more “focused” on certain genres. Breedlove guitars are a bit more versatile as far as genres go.

Should I Pick Breedlove or Martin?

Both Martin and Breedlove make high-quality instruments. Therefore, it is a bit hard to say which are better. if you’re looking for a more traditional tone and performance, Martin guitars are for you.

For instance, the D-18 and D-28 are standard “singer-songwriter” guitars.

So Martin goes by the rule: “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” manufacturing their age-old models on into modernity.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for a more budget-friendly, modern instrument, I’d recommend Breedlove.

Breedlove vs Martin: Conclusion

I feel like I need to come clean at this point and say that I’m a huge Martin guitar fan.

I tried to keep this article relatively free of bias, but I’d always choose Martin over Breedlove.

That said, I actually don’t own a Martin (yet)!

I’m saving up for a high-end model and am strongly considering the Martin D-42 even though it’s about as expensive as a cheap car.

Do you own a Martin or Breedlove?

Let me know in the comments!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *