Another option if you’re in the market for an affordable beginner mandolin that doesn’t feel cheap is the HM-3TS from Hola! Music. It uses a classic A-style body shape with a sunburst finish and the standard 20-fret scale length, but with some extra appointments you might be surprised to find in the price point. Let’s […]
Another option if you’re in the market for an affordable beginner mandolin that doesn’t feel cheap is the HM-3TS from Hola! Music.
It uses a classic A-style body shape with a sunburst finish and the standard 20-fret scale length, but with some extra appointments you might be surprised to find in the price point.
Let’s start with the basics.
This mandolin uses maple for the neck, top, and body of the instrument—one of the most affordable options you’ll find with an all-solid build. Maple is an attractive and tuneful wood that gives you the bright tone you want from a mandolin. It won’t project quite as much as an instrument that uses a spruce top, but the overall sound is rich and balanced, perfect for bluegrass ensembles.
It’s also one of the only beginner mandolins that makes it easy to customize the feel on your own.
Without the help of a repair technician.
The bridge is adjustable, first of all, but it also uses an adjustable truss rod. It comes with a hex key you can use on the screw above the nut to tweak the action, no extra tools or expertise required.
One thing a beginner might find frustrating about the HM-3TS is that it doesn’t come with much besides the instrument itself. The wrench for adjusting the action is the only included accessory. If you’re just starting out on the instrument, you’ll at the very least need to buy a gig bag to protect it during travel and storage.
But you will probably also need to invest in extras like a tuner and spare strings. Don’t forget to factor these extras in when you’re deciding on your budget.
The important thing is the instrument itself, though, and in that regard the HM-3TS from Hola! Music doesn’t disappoint.
It’s a very impressive mandolin considering the price. The tailpiece and tuners are chrome plated for durability and better functionality. And it has a bound fretboard, so you don’t need to worry about the frets slicing up your fingers on the sides. Players who use a pick will appreciate the addition of an ABS pickguard, as well, which protects the finish on the mandolin from being damaged while you play.
This instrument does occupy a bit of an in-between zone. It’s not the most affordable option, but it’s still comfortably priced. And while it’s still a beginner instrument, it has a few key details you’d expect on a more expensive mandolin.
Ultimately, it’s a great choice for the new player who’s looking for a bit more than what the typical entry-level instrument offers.