The appearance of a guitar is important to many beginners and experienced players alike! Does the guitar have a perfect glossy finish or does it have imperfections in it? Are there any gaps in its construction? What does the inside look like – are there glue areas not cleaned up? Is it sanded smooth inside? Does the wood have streaks or discolorations?
Most quality guitars have one of four finishes: nitrocellulose lacquer, UV-cured polyester, French Polish (shellac) or a polymerized oil varnish. Most inexpensive factory guitars made in Korea, Mexico, or China have a thick polyurethane finish that really restricts the movement of the top and thus the sound of the guitar. If a guitar is painted you can assume the wood used is of poor visual quality.