Mandolins! Ah, their music is super sweet, and all of us love it. It is an excellent musical instrument for those who want to add the “olden days” touch to their music.
Now, as a music composer, it is crucial that you pick the best mandolin for your needs. There are different types such as the A type, the F type, arched back, pressed top, and carved top. Which one should you go for? Remember, these are much more expensive than guitars and violins. This is because mandolins take more work and involvement during the manufacturing process. If you are on a budget, your focus should be on solid top mandolins, which are good and affordable. These are made out of solid wood and will not cost you too much. Keep away from the laminate.
Also, unless you are a professional and know how to work the instrument, there is no need to worry about purchasing an F type mandolin.
Best Mandolin for the Money
Now, let’s go through a few mandolin reviews so that we end up picking the best!
1. Ibanez M522S F-Style Mandolin Dark Violin Sunburst
For all the pro musicians who are looking for the best F-style mandolin under 500, Ibanez has a gift! Durable and of high quality, this one is a very popular choice.
- It is 8-stringed.
- It has a solid spruce top.
- It has a flamed maple body.
- It has a truss rod.
- It is an acoustic version.
- It comes ready to play. All you need to do is to just tune it.
- It is arched.
- Some users say that it is one of the loudest you can buy in this price range.
- Many users are also very happy with the intonation.
2. Rogue RM-100A A-Style Mandolin Sunburst
With a maple neck and a rosewood fingerboard, the Rogue A-Style mandolin is the best choice in the under $100 category.
Let’s go through some of its features:
- It has a 12th-fret neck joint.
- The rosewood bridge is adjustable.
- You don’t need to take the pick guard off the mandolin but you can if you prefer.
- It is a flat-back mandolin.
- If you are a beginner, this is the perfect mandolin to start off with. If you are a pro, though, you might want to check out the other options.
3. Donner A-Style Mandolin Instrument Sunburst Mahogany DML-1
The Donner A-Style mandolin is among our favorites. It is affordable and backed with a 30-day warranty to ensure that you are happy with the product.
Why do we love the mandolin so much? Read on to find out:
- It is a traditional mandolin with a glossy Sunburst finish.
- You can use it for all types of music.
- It is an 8-string.
- It is smooth and accurate, designed for right-hand use.
- The truss rod is adjustable.
- The tailpiece and open gear tuners are chrome-plated.
- It is almost an entire kit with a gig bag, digital tuner, polishing cloth, strings, and guitar picks.
- Many users say that the sound quality is just great.
- It is an excellent mandolin for beginners.
4. A-Style Mandolin Instrument with Adjustable Truss-Rod by Hola! Music
With a glossy sunburst finish, the A-style mandolin from Hola! Music has an adjustable truss rod inside the neck. The wrench is included too.
Here are a few more of its features:
- It is an 8-string mandolin.
- It is lightweight and very comfortable to use.
- It has a compensated rosewood bridge, which is adjustable.
- It has 20 silver nickel frets.
- The tailpiece and open gear tuners have chrome plating.
- The fingerboard is made of walnut wood.
- It has a black ABS pickguard and white ABS binding.
5. Morgan Monroe Rocky Top RT-FM1 F-Style Mandolin with Tuner and Wall Hanger
This is a very nice kit that consists of a wall hanger and a tuner, but we recommend this one only for beginners. Pros will not be happy with what this mandolin has to offer!
We dug deeper for you to understand its features:
- It has a basswood body and an adjustable truss rod
- It has an etched chrome tailpiece.
- It has chrome hardware.
- It comes with open geared tuners.
- It does not come with a case. So, if you need one, you will have to buy it separately.
- It is a good one for the price, but we wouldn’t make it your first choice.
Now, depending on whether you are a professional or a beginner you can pick out options under 500. Remember to go through our mandolin reviews before you take a call because something that doesn’t suit your needs will be a waste of money.
Do let us know which one you like!