Taylor GS Mini Mahogany Review
The Taylor GS Mini comes in a few different models utilizing different wood types. They fall in different price ranges depending on what’s being offered. The GS Mini also comes in a left-handed model, which is perfect for the lefty players out there!
But we are going to take a deep look into the Taylor GS Mini Mahogany! It has a wonderful sound for the price point and is a popular acoustic in the entry level offerings as well as travel guitar!
Taylor GS Mini Mahogany Features
Let’s take a look at some key features and specifications of the Taylor GS Mini Mahogany Acoustic guitar.
- Solid Mahogany Top
- Layered Sapele Back and Sides
- Sapele Neck with slim profile
- African Ebony Finger Board
- Taylor Grand Symphony Mini Body Shape
- 23.5 inch scale with 20 frets
- Chrome Tuners
- Materials and design
- Well-balanced sound
- Easy to Play
- Perfect for travel
- Perfect for smaller hands
- A set-up may be required out of the box
- Tuning Machine Heads are Generic
Who Is This Guitar For?
The GS Mini is the perfect guitar for children, people with smaller hands and players who want a good travel acoustic. It has a great volume projection and sound for the smaller body size and is quite comfortable and easy to play.
Taylor GS Mini Body
The body on the GS Mini is a scaled down version of the Taylor Grand Symphony acoustic guitars. This is what the GS stands for in the name. The Grand Symphony acoustic guitars have a very big, bold sound.
This was the inspiration for the Mini, which for a scaled down version but still packs a punch! The solid tropical mahogany top is a harder, denser wood that translates into more of a brighter tone.
But the GS body style really balances out the sound. The more you play the guitar, the more the solid mahogany top will open up to develop more overtones and contribute to a richer sound.
The back and sides are made from layered sapele, this is done to keep the cost of the instrument down, but looks and sounds great. Layered woods handle humid environments better, and so this can be a benefit if the guitar will travel.
The body is then finished in varnish on the top, back, and sides and does not have a cut away.
Neck and Headstock
The GS Mini neck is Taylor’s patented design. This design is made from sapele and features an African ebony finger board with a 23.5 inch scale.
The nut width is roughly 1.7 inch wide and has a matte finish. The neck is designed to stay sturdy and remain in tune with rock solid intonation. It feels great when playing and is easy to get around.
Being a smaller guitar, the neck would also be extremely comfortable for people with smaller hands. I have average size hands and found the neck to be very easy to play. It’s more of a “V” profile and is slim for a smooth feel.
Taylor’s claim is that their necks ensure lasting stability and intonation. I had no issues with the GS Mini when it came to tuning or intonation.
Consequently, this feature would be extremely appreciated to those who take it with them when on the go.
The GS Mini comes with a Nubone nut and Micarta saddle. Nubone, according to Graphtec, has been designed to transfer the right frequencies more efficiently from the strings to the guitar body.
Nubone also produces more harmonics in the mid and upper ranges and responds as close to bone as you can get.
Micarta is a synthetic material that is a substitute for bone but is softer and cheaper, which you will find in entry level guitars.
The die-cast chrome machine heads feel good and hold tune very well. I had no issues with tuning stability on the GS Mini.
The GS Mini mahogany does not come loaded with any electronics, so make sure you are aware of this. For the price, it only makes sense that there would not be electronics included.
There are electronics in the higher priced GS Mini-e versions, however, so if you can afford to upgrade, you will find what you need there.
GS Mini Sound
So, now that you know a bit about the guitar, the question is, how does it sound? The GS Mini is a smaller body acoustic guitar, and so naturally you would expect that it would be lacking in bass content and volume projection.
And you would only be partly correct! This little guitar is much louder than I thought it was going to be! Thanks to the mahogany top and the experience of Taylor’s engineering, this guitar is warm, with a good mid-range punch.
It does lack lower frequencies and is not quite as full as a standard body size, but it does sound great. It has a very present and shimmering treble response and is pretty warm for its size. Every time I would strum the guitar, it almost felt bigger than it really is.
This acoustic guitar is a lot of fun and hard to put down! And thanks to the small size, you may never have to as you can virtually take it with you wherever you go!
Feel and Playability
Again, the smaller size comes up as a plus! First, it’s light and tucks into your body so nice that it feels natural. The action on the guitar was perfect, which made it so easy to play. It was very comfortable because it’s small, but the neck was also a great size and profile for my hands.
The neck is just right for people with smaller hands, especially younger players. The intonation and tuning were robust, and so playing up and down the fret board was a wonderful experience. The guitar just feels robust and the neck sturdy. It’s no wonder it’s so popular!
Taylor GS Mini At NAMM
The Taylor booth at NAMM was packed and rocking! We managed to grab a picture of the GS Mini while on the wall. This guitar was very popular and was being played most of the time!
Final Verdict and Conclusion
There are many great acoustic guitars in the under 500 price range available these days that play and sound amazing.
The Taylor GS Mini Mahogany is one of those guitars that, while an entry level model, is very versatile, sounds great and is small enough for younger players.
This is an amazing guitar to play around the camp fire. It’s also perfect for business trips with experienced players who already have some professional acoustics.
Taylor is an acoustic guitar manufacturing pioneer and even in their entry level models, the quality and sound are present! We had fun with this guitar, its big balanced sound and small size make it very versatile, and hard to put down!
The mahogany top is an excellent contributor to the great sound and for a beginner, even though it’s a bit expensive because it’s a Taylor, you won’t be disappointed with this guitar! Unless of course you own some more expensive models!
Does the Taylor GS Mini sound good?
Yes, it sounds very good! Because it has a smaller body size, it doesn’t have the same fullness that a dreadnought would. But it’s warm and mid-range heavy enough to still have a surprisingly good tone and volume.
Is the Taylor GS Mini easy to play?
The Taylor GS Mini is a very easy acoustic guitar to play. Because of the size, it’s also comfortable and great for children and people with smaller hands. If you currently struggle with playing bigger acoustic guitars, this one will be a perfect fit.
Does the GS Mini have a solid top?
Yes, the GS Mini has a solid mahogany top, designed for volume projection and a transparent tone. Because it’s on the smaller side, this is the perfect type of wood for this guitar. It’s a warm tone with great clarity.