For a little over 30 years, Breedlove has been quietly going about the business of making some of the best guitars you may never have heard of. Not only are their guitars fantastically well made, but they are also built using some of the most environmentally sustainable methods employed by any guitar maker on the market today.
In most cases, to attain true sustainability, it often means sacrificing in one or more areas, whether that is tone, aesthetics, or build quality. Breedlove’s ethos is all about delivering big across the board while still retaining an environmental conscience.
Our friends at Sweetwater were kind enough to send us a Breedlove Organic Wildwood Pro Concerto CE for the purposes of this KillerGuitarRigs Review, in which we set out to find out whether or not this Breedlove acoustic is able to deliver the kind of tones, feel, and the overall quality you’d expect of a $1,000 guitar.
As always, everything in this review is based on our own honest opinion, and neither Sweetwater nor Breedlove has asked for any input.
If you’ve been curious to learn more about this brand, or you’re looking for a new acoustic and you don’t want to go for the usual Gibson, Taylor, or Martin options, you’ll definitely want to keep on reading.
Who Is This For?
The Breedlove Organic Wildwood Pro Concerto CE is really aimed at the intermediate and above guitarist. It is a comfortable guitar, and new players won’t have too much difficulty handling it, but at around $1,000, it’s a little out of the budget of the average beginner player.
With that in mind, both intermediate amateurs and working musicians alike will find that it offers solid reliability and great tone, plus the factory fitted electronics make it great for both gigging and studio use right out of the box.
Appearance / Features / Controls
The Wildwood Pro has a concerto body, which is the largest of Breedlove’s guitar designs. Rather than build the standard shapes as the majority of other manufacturers continue to do so, Breedlove has adapted those designs with the aim of improving them. Breedlove’s Concerto body is based upon the classic dreadnought shape.
This particular model is made with all solid wood, in this case, African mahogany, on the top, back, and sides. Unlike a lot of all mahogany models from Brands like Martin at this price point, the Breedlove has a gorgeous gloss finish, which paired with the dark wood looks absolutely fantastic.
It had something of an earthy, organic look, which goes along with the model’s name. It was light on embellishments, with no pickguard, a very simple rosette, and subtle fretboard inlay.
The neck is also made with mahogany and has a fantastically comfortable C shape profile. topping the neck was an ovangkol fretboard – of course, it’s always nice to see premium woods like ebony on a fretboard, especially at this price point, but when you consider Breedlove’s mission to use sustainable materials, the decision to use this wood does make sense.
As for electronics, it was fitted with a Fishman Flex Plus T preamp and under saddle piezo pickup. It had discrete controls for treble bass and volume. Like almost everything else on this guitar, nothing was particularly flashy about the hardware, but we did find ourselves impressed with its overall quality.
Performance / Sound
We found that the Breedlove Organic Wildwood Pro Concerto CE was a great workhorse type guitar. It’s handsome, but not ostentatious, and the overall build quality ensures that it offers the kind of reliability that players who make their living with their guitar demand.
Tonally, it was warm, with a fantastic depth and tons of well balanced lower mids. We think it makes an ideal rhythm guitar and works beautifully for singer songwriters. Presence was really this guitar’s strongest point – it had mountains of punch and a really unique character. it didn’t quite have the same booming voice as a dreadnought, but it had similar volume with just a bit of the bottom end edge taken off, most likely because of the curvier body shape. This helped a lot with clarity, especially with heavier strumming.
Articulation and note separation were also strong points for this guitar. It had excellent sustain, and despite not having a spruce top, it still had a nice bit of shimmer at the top end.
Unfortunately, we did find that the action height that was set by the factory was just too high. Of course, on a guitar like this, a good setup can completely change the playability and feel, and after adjusting the action, we found it to be much more forgiving, especially when playing fingerstyle.
Despite its large proportions, the curvy body did make it comfortable to hold and play, although smaller players may find the depth of the body prohibitive. Besides the action, playability was generally very good. We found that the neck was extremely comfortable and had a nice satin finish. The fret work was all very nicely finished, too, with well beveled edges and polished crowns.
The electronics were impressive and delivered a nice, organic reflection of the acoustic tone when amplified. We’ve long been fans of Fishman pickups on acoustic guitars, and the Flex Plus T system works exceptionally well with this Breedlove guitar.
We found that the tuning stability was excellent, and the compensated saddle did help with intonation, which was accurate from top to bottom.
Final Thoughts on the Breedlove Organic Wildwood Pro Concerto CE
The Breedlove Organic Wildwood Pro Concerto CE is a great option for anybody who wants to venture away from the more mainstream brands, while still getting a quality guitar from a company that genuinely cares.
From top to bottom, the fit and finish were excellent, and had it not been for the high action, we’d have had practically nothing negative to say at all. It’s clear that it was made with quality woods, by well-skilled luthiers, and it delivers some real bang for your buck. What’s really amazing is that Breedlove has managed all of this, while truly committing to sustainability.
Its tones were well balanced and very rich. The dreadnought size combined with the curvy concerto body gave it a very unique character that stands out from the crowd, and the Fishman electronics make it easy to get great tone when plugged in.
We do think that this model is best as a rhythm guitar, but it is still perfectly serviceable for those who prefer to play fingerstyle, too. At the end of the day, if your aim is to pick up a premium feeling, all solid wood acoustic guitar for $1,000 or less, this Breedlove should definitely be on your radar.