Sponsored By
 
Martin 000-16E
 
An affordable 000 with granadillo back and sides and Fishman electronics.
December 2, 2019

Martin’s 16-series guitars have long had a reputation for excellent value. Built alongside the company’s higher-end models in its Nazareth, Pennsylvania, factory, the cost of the 16-series instruments is reduced because Martin uses a less-complex manufacturing process than it does for its Standard-series models, while the value is increased because Martin adds features such as built-in electronics. We recently had a chance to check out the latest 16-series version of the venerable 000: the 000-16E. 

Having been around since the mid-1930s, the fundamental Martin 14-fret 000 template is well-known, and with its simple appointments and standard non-cutaway body, the 000-16E is reminiscent of legendary models such as the 000-18 and 000-28. While there are certain differences in construction, including a simplified dovetail neck joint and satin-finished back and sides, the guitar could be mistaken for a more expensive Standard-series instrument. 16-series Martins have often been built with nontraditional woods and the 000-16E is no exception, with back and sides of granadillo, a South American wood that is extremely hard and is known for its bell-like tap tone and a sonic quality similar to rosewood. On our demo guitar, the wood had a beautiful appearance, with rich, dark coloring, and even grain patterns. 

The included Fishman Matrix VT Enhance electronics consist of an undersaddle pickup with a bridge plate–mounted soundboard transducer that can be blended into the overall sound with a control on the treble side of the soundhole. Two additional controls in the bass side of the soundhole adjust volume and tone. The system is powered by a nine-volt battery that is accessible through a compartment in the end block. 

Playing the guitar, I was delighted to find that it captured the quintessential qualities of classic 14-fret 000’s. It has the quick response and balanced tone that make this model a favorite of fingerstyle players, but it also has the volume reserves and fat lower midrange that make the 000 a great accompaniment instrument. While some earlier 16-series 000’s had a long scale, Martin chose the traditional short scale for this 000-16E, which, combined with the contemporary-feeling high-performance neck, make the guitar very playable. Plugged into a Fishman Loudbox Mini Charge, the positive impression continued: the undersaddle pickup sounded good on its own, but adding the soundboard transducer to the mix expanded the tonal dimension and allowed for the use of more percussive techniques. 

Overall, the latest 000-16E is a wonderful guitar that exceeded my expectations for a basic 14-fret 000. Players looking for maximum bang for the buck on a design that has withstood the test of time would do well to check this guitar out 

SPECS: 14-fret 000 body. Sitka spruce top. Granadillo back and sides. Select hardwood neck. Ebony fretboard and bridge. 24.9-inch scale. 1¾-inch nut width. 2⁵/₃₂-inch string spacing at the saddle. Nickel open-gear tuning machines. Fishman Matrix VT Enhance electronics. Made in USA. $2,199 (list). Martinguitar.com

 

Related New Gear Posts
 

Martin HD-28E (2018)

The latest version of Martin’s Standard series herringbone dreadnought includes custom Fishman electronics.

Read More

 

Martin 00-28

A rare model returns to Martin’s Standard Series.

Read More

 

Martin 00-17S Whiskey Sunset

12-fret 00 fuses classic catalog guitar style with contemporary tone and feel.

Read More

 

Martin 00-18 Authentic 1931

Vintage-style 12-fret re-creation with dynamic and complex tone.

Read More

 

Martin D-28 Modern Deluxe

The latest D-28 fuses classic design with innovative features

Read More

 

Martin CS-Bluegrass-16

Martin custom-shop tribute to bluegrass guitar legends.

Read More

 

Martin GPC-13E

An affordable acoustic-electric cutaway built with solid woods and Fishman electronics.

Read More

 

Martin DJR-10E

The latest Dreadnought Junior model offers a compact size and big sound.

Read More

 

Martin D-1 Authentic 1931

A cool re-creation of Martin’s first dreadnought.

Read More

 

Martin 000-17E Whiskey Sunset

Great-sounding mahogany and spruce 000 includes Fishman electronics.

Read More

 
Sponsored By
 
 
 
Peghead Partners
 
In the Shop | Elderly Instruments
Joe Konkoly discusses the steps he took to optimize a 1926 Martin 000-28.
 
 
 
 
 
  Follow Us:  
 
  About Us       Shop         Support         Contact Us         Email Sign up         Advertise         Sitemap         FAQ         Privacy         Terms         Subscribe   Sign In  
 
    ● Courses
    ● Live Workshops
    ● Instructors
    ● Sample Lessons
    ● Notation Guide
    ● For Beginners
 
    ● Workshops
    ● Advice
    ● Repertoire
 
    ● Vintage Vault
    ● New Gear
    ● Fine Lutherie
 
    ● Recordings
    ● Events
    ● Breaking News
 
    ● In The Studio
    ● Live Onstage
    ● Backroom
 
    ● New Products
    ● Inside Look
    ● Performances
    ● Partner Pages
 
 
© Copyright 2020 PegheadNation.com
 
 
    ● Courses
    ● Live Workshops
    ● Instructors
    ● Sample Lessons
    ● Notation Guide
    ● For Beginners
 
 
    ● Vintage Vault
    ● New Gear
    ● Fine Lutherie
 
 
    ● Workshops
    ● Advice
    ● Repertoire
 
 
    ● Recordings
    ● Events
    ● Breaking News
 
 
    ● In The Studio
    ● Live Onstage
    ● Backroom
 
 
    ● New Products
    ● Inside Look
    ● Performances
    ● Partner Pages
 
 
© Copyright 2020 PegheadNation.com