I’ve been a fan of Ovation guitars ever since my guitar teacher brought one to one of my very first lessons way back in 1989. I was ten at the time, and even then I’d already been aware of the brand through Denny Laine’s Guitar Book. Laine was the guitarist in Paul McCartney & Wings, and his book featured a photo of Laine and Macca hanging out while Laine strummed a gorgeous Ovation Adamas (it’s on page 85 if you manage to track this rare 1979 book down). The company makes visually striking and sonically gorgeous instruments that are like nothing else out there.
The Standard Elite series is Ovation’s mid-priced line. The 2778AX features a hand-selected, deluxe AA solid spruce top with scalloped bracing and Ovation’s famous Contour Bowl composite body, which unites the back and sides as one single unit designed to maximise acoustic output while placing the guitar in the optimum position for ergonomic comfort. This is Ovation’s Deep Contour bowl, although other depths are available on various models. The bowl is made of Lyrachord composite, impregnated with glass microspheres. Cool, huh? Like the Adamas in Laine’s book, this model features a series of different sized sound holes surrounded by a rosette of various inlaid hardwoods. It’s an incredible look that feels like it has an authentic design pedigree, rather than the often more practical visuals of most guitars.