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The mandolin reviews database is here to help educate people before they purchase an instrument. Of course, this is not meant to be a substitute for playing the instrument yourself!

89 reviews in the archive.

Rover: RM-75

Submitted by Brad Bechtel on 1/15/2013

Where Purchased: World of Strings, Cupertino, CA

Year Purchased: 2010
Price Paid: 400 ($US)

Sound

This is the F-style solid wood model by Rover. I bought it based on reviews online. It had a very "woody" sound, not a lot of brightness compared to my friend's Kentucky mandolin. It also wasn't quite as loud as I thought it was when playing it in the store.
It's a good bluegrass starter instrument.

Sound Rating: 7

Setup

It was not set up at all when I bought it. I put on new strings and knew I'd have to get it done right. I took it to Gryphon Stringed Instruments in Palo Alto, CA and they made it much, much better. It was easy to change strings.

Setup Rating: 5

Appearance

It's a very nice looking F-style mandolin. I had the darker finish, not the lighter sunburst finish. The tuners were cheap but functional.

Appearance Rating: 6

Reliability

If I were to make any other changes to the instrument I would replace the tuners. You get what you pay for in these types of inexpensive Asian instruments. You could upgrade the bridge, tailpiece and tuners and have an instrument that would last you many years. Or you could buy a different instrument for the same price.

Reliability Rating: 6

Customer Service

No issues with the company - never tried to deal with them.

Customer Service: not rated

Components

The tuners were the weakest part. The bridge is cheap but works exactly as you expect, keeping the strings up off the body of the mandolin. The tailpiece does what it's supposed to do. The frets were level and accurate.

Components Rating: 7

Overall Comments

It's a decent instrument for the price. Don't expect more than it is and you'll be happy. I keep it in my office for when the mood strikes.
It made me want to buy a better instrument.

Overall Rating: 7

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