The very first thing a purist will say about this instrument is that the shape is unconventional... That is certainly true but the almost Mandocello like approach Pepe Romero has taken with this instrument offers a full bodied and expansive sounding guitar with enough compactness to really fill a void in the guitar world. It's truly refreshing to see a guitar maker take inspiriation from the often forgotten Guilele and Guitalele designs and use those inspiriations to reinvent the wheel. What struck me most when trying the Daniel Ho model out was just how little I missed the full scale length of a guitar and how much sound could be created whilst reducing the scale length by a whole 5 inches. This isn't anything like a Baby Taylor or a Little Martin... It's its own beast. The lower register really benefits from the unusual body shape and the higher register notes really ping and ting with a slight flamenco edge and the lower tension makes this feel much easier to play than the travel guitars we have seen previously.
The whole thing feels compact, refined and very modern but the sounds it produces are tinged with an almost pocket like Rodrigo y Gabriella or Julian Bream sound in the hands of a skilled player.
The final thing of note is the Gotoh Planetary tuners which could spoil the whole thing if a lesser manufacturer was at the helm but here they offer balance and poise taking away the classical guitars signature slotted headstock and geared tuners in place of something precise and a modern spin on Ukulele/banjo tradition.
Solid Spruce Top
Solid Mahogany Back and Sides
Made in Vietnam
20’ radiused fingerboard
Handcrafted, all solid wood
Tuned E to E with light acoustic steel strings (.012mm - .053mm)
Ebony fingerboard and bridge