Miranda S-250 Travel Guitar

From an early age, I wanted to learn to play the guitar. I took a few lessons here and there through the years, but for the most part taught myself from books and tapes. I never was a very good player, but that hasn’t stopped my love of the instrument and music. I’ve had several guitars, from electric to acoustic, to even a mini electric that I built myself using a kit. I even had a dial up BBS back in the day completely devoted to TAB (tablature files) that was named CrossRoads BBS.

I haven’t made time to play for years and years, but just recently decided to try to revive the desire. What better way to do that, then to buy a new guitar! I didn’t want or need another regular acoustic since I already have a very nice small bodied Collings. I didn’t want an electric because I don’t have an amp. That doesn’t seem to leave any other choices does it? Wrong… I decided to buy a travel guitar! I’ve had a thing for little guitars probably since I began loving the instrument.


Which would you rather lug around with you? The guitar on the left, or the guitar on the right? What guitar on the right you ask? Would you believe that they both cases contain a guitars that are basically the same size?

Open the small zippered case (4 in x 6 in x 30 in) and you will find the Miranda S-250 steel stringed guitar. Yes, it comes in pieces. Seven pieces (if you include the 3 thumb screws) to be exact.

The main body of the S-250 is made of Mahogany, with a Rosewood fretboard. The sides are made of high-impact, scratch-resistant acrylic and the center brace is made of Aluminum.

The assembly of the guitar requires no tools, no skills and no time.

All you do is attach the center brace between the two sides with 2 thumb screws.

Next you insert the bottom post between the two sides.

Then attach the assembled frame to the main body using another thumb screw.

Last but not least, you rotate the attached struts into slots on either side of the ‘shoulders’. That’s it! It’s a very easy procedure that takes less than 3 minutes.



The fully assembled guitar looks like this. Pretty wild huh?

To give you a size comparison, here it is next to my Collings 0002H. The S-250 has a scale length of 25.6 inches with an overall length of 33.9 inches. Upper bout width is 10.7 inches, waist width is 9.3 inches and lower bout is 15.0 inches.

Even though the S-250 looks like an acoustic guitar, it doesn’t have an enclosed sound box, so it doesn’t really project sound like an acoustic guitar. In order to hear sound from the strings, the guitar has to be amplified like an electric guitar.

Speaking of strings, the S-250 has a an interesting neck / headstock design. The strings feed through slots at the top of the neck where you would normally find the headstock.

The strings then wind around a unique pulley system at the bottom of the fretboard and finally into individual tuning posts in the headstock.

Instead of having the headstock at the top of the neck, it’s located behind the fretboard. This design helps keep the guitar compact by decreasing the physical length. Gotoh tuners are attached to the headstock.

The location of the headstock does it make it a bit awkward to tune this guitar. Instead of being able to strum a string with your right hand while adjusting a tuner with your left hand, you have to strum a string with your right hand, stop and adjust the tuner with that same hand. You can stand the guitar upright on your lap and strum with one hand while tuning with the other. Luckily this guitar does seem to stay in tune pretty well.

Like I mentioned before, the S-250 doesn’t have a sound-box, so it can’t project sound like a normal acoustic guitar. You can hear some sound when you play, but not enough to really enjoy the instrument. For that, you’ll either need an amplifier or headphones.

The electronics are housed in a small box on the back of the neck. Powered by a 9v battery, you can either plug a standard 1/4 inch cable, or a standard 3.5mm set of headphones (a set of headphones are included). There is also a 3.5mm line in jack that you can use to plug in another sound source so that you can play along with music. There’s an on/off slider switch, volume level knob and a brightness knob.

The S-250 is easy to play. The action is good and sound through headphones is good although to my ears it sounds a little too much like an electric guitar instead of an acoustic. Not surprising though. I’m always going to prefer a real acoustic guitar over an electric because my favorite style of music to play is finger-style Irish fiddle tunes. And no, I didn’t record me playing this guitar because I’m quite rusty still. Don’t worry though, Miranda’s website has sound bites for both the S-250 and the CFX-200 nylon stringed model.

The Miranda S-250 is an extremely well made musical instrument that should put a smile on guitar playing travelers faces.

 

Product Information

Price:1195.0
Manufacturer:Miranda Guitars
Pros:
  • A full size guitar breaks down to a much smaller travel size
  • Easy to assemble
  • Well made
  • Good sound
Cons:
  • A little awkward to tune
Posted in: Music Gear

{ 23 comments… add one }

  • Julie April 11, 2007, 3:41 am

    Post your comments on the Miranda S-250 Travel Guitar review.

    http://www.the-gadgeteer.com/review/miranda_s_250_travel_guitar

    Just click the POST REPLY button on this page.

    1
  • Jules April 11, 2007, 5:28 am

    Whoa…that’s a really neat innovation – but I must say it does look odd at first sight without the headboard. :blink:

    2
  • PetersReviews April 11, 2007, 5:29 am

    Good review! The guitar looks nice but it looks a little too many parts for someone as lazy as me to deal with. :D

    Peter

    3
  • Jules April 11, 2007, 5:31 am

    PetersReviews wrote:

    too many parts for someone as lazy as me to deal with. :D

    Haha…same here. I think I like my black acoustic just the way it is, all fixed up and ready to go. :cool:

    4
  • lawabb April 11, 2007, 6:00 am

    I agree with others… too many pieces. Can it be used with a neck strap and without the pseudo body?

    5
  • Julie April 11, 2007, 11:47 am

    Jules & PetersReviews:

    The first time I tried to put it together I felt a little overwhelmed, but that lasted only for the first assembly. It’s really quite easy. You have to remember that this is a travel guitar. It’s for someone that wants a light weight full size guitar that will fit in an aircraft overhead compartment. I wouldn’t really make the S-250 my main guitar… but for traveling, it’s very nice.

    lawabb:
    Mine doesn’t have any strap pegs, but I believe the folks at Miranda can add them if requested (I can’t find the option on their site right now, but I know I saw it somewhere).

    6
  • Jules April 11, 2007, 11:51 am

    It’s prolly meant for travellers anyway… ;)

    7
  • Julie April 11, 2007, 12:01 pm

    Jules:

    Yup :)

    Does anyone have a Baby Taylor or a Tacoma Papoose guitar? I’ve wondered how well they sound and how easy they are to play?

    8
  • Jules April 11, 2007, 12:05 pm

    Nope, don’t have either of them…what I have my eye on is an Ovation. :P

    9
  • Julie April 11, 2007, 12:08 pm

    A full size Ovation? Or do they have a travel version?

    10
  • Jules April 11, 2007, 12:12 pm

    Ovation doesn’t have a travel version, not that I know of anyway. What I have my eye on is this baby –

    11
  • Julie April 11, 2007, 12:43 pm

    Very nice :)

    12
  • Jules April 11, 2007, 12:59 pm

    Thanks! It costs a bomb though – my boss bought his sweet Ovation for SGD1,200. :S

    13
  • PetersReviews April 12, 2007, 5:45 am

    Julie wrote:

    Does anyone have a Baby Taylor or a Tacoma Papoose guitar? I’ve wondered how well they sound and how easy they are to play?

    I own a Baby Taylor and I love it. The sound is pretty nice but it definitely has a higher tone than a full-sized acoustic that might not appeal to everyone. It works great when I want to play with another acoustic guitar player because it really compliments the sound with a nice tenor guitar tone. It plays like a dream (after I worked on it) and I modified it with a B-Band pickup which makes it sound incredible when plugged in. Also the shorter scale length makes the string tension lighter than a full-sized guitar.
    The Tacoma Papoose is a different type of guitar. It’s meant to act like a normal size guitar with a capo at the 5th fret. So you’re tuning to A. It’s a nice instrument but I didn’t like the different tuning.

    Peter

    14
  • PetersReviews April 12, 2007, 5:57 am

    Jules wrote:

    Ovation doesn’t have a travel version, not that I know of anyway. What I have my eye on is this baby –

    Nice guitar! I hope you can get it soon!

    Ovation actually does have a travel guitar.
    http://www.ovationguitars.com/index.cfm?fa=detail&mid=764

    Applause Guitars (a lower-priced alternative to the Ovation line) has a few different travel guitars.
    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Applause-AA13-Minibowl-Cutaway-Acoustic-Guitar?sku=516700

    I haven’t tried either guitar but they both look like they might be fun, inexpensive travel guitars.

    Peter

    15
  • Julie April 12, 2007, 12:14 pm

    Peter:

    Do you tune a Baby Taylor like a full sized guitar? I’m a slave to my electronic tuner, so if it needs to be tuned by ear, I’d probably shy away from it.

    16
  • tnriverfish April 12, 2007, 7:37 pm

    http://tranjo.com/

    a guy I know developed this one and it is sweet…. if you like banjos.

    17
  • PetersReviews April 12, 2007, 10:46 pm

    Julie wrote:

    Peter:

    Do you tune a Baby Taylor like a full sized guitar? I’m a slave to my electronic tuner, so if it needs to be tuned by ear, I’d probably shy away from it.

    Yes, the Baby Taylor is tuned to standard tuning. With the shorter scale length it’s easier to play because of it’s lower string tension and smaller size. It’s great for kids too!

    Peter

    18
  • Julie April 12, 2007, 11:42 pm

    PetersReviews:

    I think I’m going to buy one! :)

    19
  • Julie April 20, 2007, 4:39 pm

    PetersReviews:

    I ordered a Mahogany Baby Taylor guitar last night :)

    20
  • jose gouveia February 8, 2009, 11:14 am

    como faço para adquirir o violão Miranda S250 Travel ….muito bonito e facil de se trabalhar. espero a resposta.
    o valor do intrumento.
    abraços.

    21
  • Nina Case December 29, 2009, 6:46 pm

    I know of a cooler travel guitar site at http://www.guitaround.com. the inventor is an artist, musician, magician and luthier that’s why he comes up with some interesting designs.

    22
  • BClayton June 4, 2010, 9:56 am

    Check out the “Little Martin” LXM-1. 3/4 size fits nicely in the overhead and seems to be better constructed and plays better than the Baby Taylor. Retails around 269.00

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