Taylor Grand Pacific 517 & 717 – New For 2019 – Acoustic Guitar Review and Comparison

Two new Builder’s Edition guitars have just landed! Taylor’s 517 and 717 continue the tradition of excellence that Taylor is know for around the world. Astounding timbre and volume are both present, and both are a dream to play. Our own Chris McKee is going to introduce these beauties to you and also play a few lick for you. Let us know what you think in the comments below. Play A Note, Change Your Life!

Taylor Grand Pacific 717 → https://www.alamomusic.com/taylor-builders-edition-717-v-class-bracing-spruce-rosewood/

Taylor Grand Pacific 517 → https://www.alamomusic.com/taylor-builders-edition-517-v-class-bracing-wild-honey-burst-spruce-mahogany-wildhoneyburst/

∘ Guitar Buyers Guide → https://www.alamomusic.com/discover-musicdont-get-a-good-deal-on-the-wrong-guitar-guitar-buyers-guide/

∘ Interested in a different guitar? Talk to an expert here → https://www.alamomusic.com/find-your-guitar/

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Mark Robinson says:

I have one of the re vamped 810 dread models. Skipped the ES in favor of less invasive Baggs Lyric. Great axe. These are the only thing that might get me to pull out the wallet. Always looking for that “vintage” old guitar sound you just can’t get with a new one. No substitute for age and many hours of play.

Ryan Baggarly says:

717 was my favorite then the 517

Ryan Baggarly says:

Wow who wrote these songs. Beautiful

Rick Costa says:

Chris another amazing review. I was not drawn to most of the Taylors but these really more to my liking. You are right that it’s just a more subjective thing. I always appreciate how you educate us and let us hear what you mean. My next guitar will be from Alamo!

2ndDamian says:

What they do best is that they do something that everyone does and sell it as new. Like a mobile phone seller from the same corner of the state. “We’ve done something that has never been done before, a Slopshoulder, I’m sorry, Andy Powers, it’s getting weird

Tim McDonald says:

Great review Chris!! Thank you for doing the comparisons of these with the 814ce, it really helps.

Steve Richardson says:

Very nice…

Jim Venable says:

Sounds wonderful, but I kind of wonder why there’s no pick guard?

A M says:

The bridge looks like the extinguished R Taylor guitars with rounded edges.

im58woody says:

I agree, Chris puts out very informative videos and does his homework on them so there’s not a lot of guessing about the guitar. I like the look of these new models. I don’t like that they didn’t install the neck strap button. I do like that they didn’t install the electronics in them so I would use a Baggs Anthem. The burst is beautiful.

Just a Ride says:

717 for me, it’s still a little brittle when you dig in picking though. I live the added warmth and low end. Great review!

Anthony Tuscano says:


Robert Carhart Jr says:

Hey, Chris, nicely done comparison. I’m not normally a dread guy, but am intrigued by these, so this fuller exploration is quite useful. Being a fan of mahogany generally, I think I’d lean a little more toward the 517 (and I, for one, would likely opt to skip the “e” variant). Thanks!

Matt·Dylan says:

They look and sound beautiful , can’t wait to hear the 317 as well. any idea what the lower bout body depth is? i wonder if its the Taylor standard dreadnought 4 & 5/8″ or 5″ like the Grand Orchestra’s – great review as always Chris, thanks!

Lexonn says:


Gosh, I love it so much.
It is the ideal guitar shape.
Both imposing and elegant at the same time, smoothly flowing from the wide bout to the narrow neck.
The rare 14-fret slope shoulder dreadnoughts with slotted headstock look ever more terrific.
Like Tanglewood TW138 ASM SD.

Brad H. says:

If I hadn’t just picked up my Bourgeois slope shoulder dread, I’d have one of these!!

Leo Maneke says:

I love these new guitars. I really like the sound from the 517. Nice full warm sound. Great guitars.

Dmitriy Alyabiev says:

nice, mostly interested in the mahogany for sure.
cant wait to play it
good review as always Chris

John Smith says:

I love Taylor guitars. I have a DN3 and love it. Taylor guitars are what they are, and nothing wrong with that. But this attempt to “channel” an old Gibson acoustic isn’t working for me. The sound is still very bright (compared to and old Gibson), the finish looks like an attempt to NOT copy and yet still copy classic Gibson acoustics. Sadly, it looks very cheap and not well done to me. And the “rounding” of the edges seems like an attempt to make it feel like an old, well used guitar.
WAY too overly contrived IMO. I guess they are running out of ideas.

Mark Thompson says:

Looks like a jumbo body and I don’t like jumbos

Nicholas Totoro says:

I know this is kind of a “duh” statement, but it sounds like a Taylor. I know it’s a slope shoulder Dread and is going more toward a traditional direction in tone, but it still sounds bright and thin like any other Taylor to me.

Michael McIlwrath says:

by far (very far), the best and most informative videos of acoustics on the internet are by Chris at Alamo, the two guys at music villa, and anything with Danish Pete at Andertons. So good to see Taylor giving Chris early access to the 17 size models.

3 Card Monty says:

Taylor really giving Gibson & Martin a run for the money. I love the bass tones out of these guitars.

aquascape1 says:

I wish you respect it and not lean on the guitar ☹️

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