In the early '80s, the fledgeling company Taylor Guitars was still finding its foothold in the guitar market. Bob Taylor's guitar designs have always been impressive—and they produced high-quality instruments during this era—but Taylor hadn't quite found their niche in those days. Over the coming decades, signature design elements—such as cutaways and state-of-the-art electronics—would guide Bob's guitars away from the more traditional, handmade approach that got him started.
This 1983 Taylor 710 is an excellent example of an early 700 Series dreadnought. Relative to dreadnought's from other builders, its body seems bigger and more exaggerated with big square shoulders. The lower bout is 16" across, and the waist is 11-3/8" while the upper bout measures 12-1/8" across.
As expected, the tone it produces is big, too. This 710 has strong, throaty output that more closely aligns with the traditional dreadnought EQ and sound than many modern Taylors. Constructed of a solid Sitka Spruce top and East Indian Rosewood back and sides, this 710 jumps across the room with singing trebles and nice clarity. Its got plenty of low-end rumble to drive the band and plenty of treble cut to make lead lines shine.
This 710 has a slim, fast neck profile that makes moving up the neck smooth and easy. Notes ring clear and true all the way up the fingerboard, and its nut measures 1-11/16".
This 1983 Taylor 710 shows expected play wear and moderate finish checking, but it's in nice shape for its age. It looks like the neck joint may have caused some frustration at some point, but it is all properly repaired and stable. The neck has been reset, and there are two repaired top cracks along each edge of the fingerboard extension. There is a strap button on the neck heel, and at one time someone installed a strap button on the bass side, right by the neck (see photo). Apart from that, it has been refretted, and it has a new nut and a new tall bone saddle. As a result, it plays nicely and is ready to take your music wherever it needs to go.
This 1983 Taylor 710 has the rich, seasoned tone of a used guitar. It is the earlier iteration the model with a three-piece back. It's cool to see an early Taylor, and this one makes us wonder if Taylor was trying to send a message with such a big, eye-catching body. It many ways, it seems to represent a bygone era of the company's history, but it's also a great acoustic guitar in its own right. It includes its original hardshell case.