LAG S200PE parlour - discontinued but worth looking for

Here you can discuss details about instruments, equipment and all those other bits that non-musicians won't understand !

Moderator: GORDON

User avatar
Oldbones
Posts: 112
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:16 am
Location: Cheshire

LAG S200PE parlour - discontinued but worth looking for

Postby Oldbones » Thu May 28, 2015 2:22 pm

In previous posts elsewhere in this forum, I have made mention of the LAG S200PE (GLA200PE) parlour guitar, so I thought I'd revisit a review I wrote for a separate forum some years ago to update it, add to it and post it here.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This guitar was originally part of the LAG 'Four Seasons' series which has now been discontinued in favour of the newer Tramontane series. For a long time, this new range did not contain a parlour guitar although one has now been added – the T77PE. I bought my S200PE in mid 2008 so, at the time of writing this review, I have owned and played it for 7 years.

Being a parlour guitar, you don't expect the projection or resonance of a full-bodied guitar, let alone a jumbo, but for its size, the 200PE produces an acoustically loud bright sound with enough bass to satisfy. The guitar is equally suited to finger-picking and plectrum lead. Strumming isn't quite so effective as the treble tends to get a bit lost and overall definition can be a tad muddy unless you make a conscious effort to avoid striking the 6th string. Plectrum strums sound better than fingertip strums - but chords picked cleanly when fingerpicking do sound very good. Being a traditionally styled and size for a parlour guitar, it is extremely comfortable to play if you want to sit back in your armchair and noodle away to your heart’s content.

String attachment is of the through-bridge type with no pins. This has thus far caused no problems. Restringing is ultra-easy. The bridge-to-body attachment is strengthened by the use of two small bolts which also attach the under-saddle pickup. The bolt-heads are covered. When bought in 2008, the action was pleasingly low, but not ultra-low. There were no fret buzzes and this hasn't changed since it was bought. These days I tune the guitar one and a half tones down to C# F# B E G# c# and there are still no buzzes. I usually use a Shubb capo and even at the 9th fret, there are still no signs of buzz or rattle. The neck profile is extremely comfortable but the strap button as fitted to the heel is in a slightly uncomfortable place if you like playing up to or beyond the 12th fret. The guitar is so light that I use a narrow 1” strap attached at the heel and via a ‘hanger strap’ at the headstock..

As regards reliability and tuning stability I have absolutely no nits to pick. The guitar came fitted with Elixir strings and tuning is fantastically stable. I can't even recall the last time I had to adjust tuning by more than a tiny tweak of the firm, geared, enclosed tuners. This is one of 2 guitars that I have on a stand in rooms of my house, so it gets played pretty well every day.

The other main component to describe is the rather unusual active Studio LAG pre-amp system. This provides 5 untweakable settings - and therein lies both a good idea and a feature that can take some getting used to if you’re the type of player who likes to tweak their EQ settings on their guitar. The 5 presets are described as exemplifying these tonal ‘soundscapes’ -

1 - Natural folk
2 - Bluesey / Studio
3 - Rhythm
4 - Fingerstyle
5 - Jazz

The idea is to provide the player with 5 distinctive settings to make it easy to switch quickly and cleanly. The assumption is that players only need these settings and are happy to accept them as-is. Any tweaking has to be done either via whatever in-line FX modeling unit you are using and/or at the amp. At best, the settings will be what you want. Next best, they come close and give you a starting point for tweaking at the amp. At worst, they need to be significantly tweaked to give you the sound that YOU want. This is definitely a feature of the instrument that you would be best advised to test before buying – although that is now harder to do since the guitar is rarely seen in shops. The new Tramontane is fitted with a Piezo NanoFlex under saddle pickup and uses LAG’s own DirectLag Plus preamp. Reviews have generally been good although a few complaints have appeared concerning the quality of finish on a few instruments.

For the record, then, the basic specification of the S200PE are as follows -

Style --- Parlour
Top --- Spruce
Back --- Sapelli
Sides --- Sapelli
Binding ---Rosewood / Maple
Neck --- Mahogany
Fingerboard --- Indian Rosewood
Position markers --- Side of neck only
Trussrod --- 2-way
Nut --- Nu-Bone 42mm
Nut string spacing --- 36mm
Saddle string spacing --- 53mm
Saddle --- Nu-Bone 72mm
Frets --- 20
Scale --- 650mm
Joins body at --- 14th fret
Strings --- Elixir 12s
Tuners --- Lag Hi-Precision with Ivorine Buttons
Pins --- No – through the bridge
Pre-amp --- Shadow 4-Plus Pickup and active Preamp (5 presets)
Finish & colour --- Satin / Natural

There are several demos and performances on Youtube. The first is by the person who owned the shop from where and from whom I bought the guitar back in 2008.

BAROQUE AND ROLL demo by Paul Del Nevo
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-7ZKlq2UFw

Demo of LAG GLA 200PE Parlour Guitar by Martin Robertson (acoustic and electro)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BrkHCwr-DXc

My own demo with slideshow and details
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=91Ji2zvJRjw

NANOFLEX DEMO by myself
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRv7p5zUpmI

BLUES by rhytmiker
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=owV0WjecNAU

HEY JOE by 83boner
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxYSh4h4aNA

Fleet Foxes - White Winter Hymnal Cover by Andy Muss (Strumming)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fLVj18h9754

Libertines - Cant Stand Me Now - Acoustic Cover by Andy Muss (Strumming)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wN5FPFc5aO8
It isn't how fast you can play that counts - it's that you only play as fast as you need to play that is important.
Silence can be as eloquent as sound.

Marcus
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Aug 17, 2015 4:00 pm

Re: LAG S200PE parlour - discontinued but worth looking for

Postby Marcus » Sun Aug 23, 2015 11:26 pm

Ha! got one of these recently in a charity shop...a touch 'road worn' but still lovely. What a fantastic instrument.. gave it some TLC and its really come back to life. It has a shadow four plus preamp which seems defective right now (work to do when i have time) but acoustically its a little gem. Lovely aesthetic details for something so 'low end'.

User avatar
Oldbones
Posts: 112
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:16 am
Location: Cheshire

Re: LAG S200PE parlour - discontinued but worth looking for

Postby Oldbones » Mon Aug 24, 2015 8:42 am

Charity shop?
How much did you have to pay, I wonder?
Sounds like the previous owner wasn't really all that careful or maybe the guitar had a useful if rather unloved life?
You mention that the Shadow system has failed. I'm not sure how easy that will be to repair or replace. LAG have now dropped pretty well all their previous models in favour of the Tramontane range and I'm not sure if any use that same system of 5 presets rather than adjustable EQ. Not sure if you noticed, but one of the links I listed was for my own simple demo of those presets ...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BRv7p5zUpmI


When I wrote the review I wasn't too keen on it, but now I've become quite fond and it's a guitar that I still have in my possession although, to be fair, it isn't one I take out of its case all that often. But there's no doubt that it IS an excellent guitar for not a lot of money - especially if you can find one in a charity shop.

Hope you get everything back up and running.
It isn't how fast you can play that counts - it's that you only play as fast as you need to play that is important.
Silence can be as eloquent as sound.

Marcus
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Aug 17, 2015 4:00 pm

Re: LAG S200PE parlour - discontinued but worth looking for

Postby Marcus » Tue Aug 25, 2015 7:30 pm

Well, to avoid mystery, I paid £30 for it...
Its a guitar that I suspect had been well used & travelled but not treated unkindly, (no pick gouges either).
The pre amp / pickup is The EQ version and not the 5 pre set type; many thanks for putting up the link though.
Whilst I'm fortunate to have a delicious GG Deluxe that travels with me theres something about the LAG parlour that I really like & I was intrigued to read your post. Many thanks for putting that up and your reply.

Best regards


Return to “Guitar Anoraks Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest