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Cort G300 Raw Review – Some Things Are Better Raw!

Hello there and welcome back to yet another guitar review! This time we will look at one of my latest purchases, Cort G300 Raw. 

As you may already know, I used to work in the musical instruments industry and had the chance to test and play thousands of guitars. Cort is one of the brands that we would sell daily and I have a long-term experience with their entire line.

However, I had never played a Cort for a long time and have recently been eyeing their new models. Cort G300 Raw got my attention immediately as I’m a big fan of natural-looking guitars. So I went for it and would like to feature this beautiful instrument on my blog. As I always do, I spent many hours taking original photos of my Cort G300 Raw and also prepared a no-talking demo video of this lovely guitar.

Before we dig into all the nitty-gritty details, let’s have a quick introduction to the Cort guitars!

Cort Guitars

Cort Guitars is a renowned South Korean guitar manufacturer that has established itself as a prominent player in the musical instrument industry. Founded in 1973 by Jack Westheimer, an American entrepreneur, Cort initially focused on building guitars for other brands. However, it soon gained recognition for its own line of instruments, becoming a trusted name among musicians worldwide.

Cort is known for producing a wide range of guitars that cater to different musical genres and player preferences. The company’s lineup includes electric guitars, acoustic guitars, basses, and even classical guitars. One of the key factors contributing to Cort‘s success is its commitment to quality craftsmanship and innovation. The company collaborates with acclaimed luthiers and employs cutting-edge technology to create instruments that meet the demands of both amateur and professional musicians.

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Over the years, Cort has gained popularity for offering high-quality instruments at competitive prices, making them accessible to a broad audience. The brand has also collaborated with well-known artists, further enhancing its reputation in the music industry.

Whether you’re a beginner looking for an affordable and reliable instrument or a seasoned musician seeking professional-grade gear, Cort Guitars has a diverse range of options to suit various playing styles and preferences. With a blend of craftsmanship, innovation, and affordability, Cort continues to be a significant player in the global guitar market.

Cort Guitars probably manufactures a lot more guitars than you would ever imagine! Whether those guitars are made in South Korea or Indonesia, chances are they are made by Cort company. Cort Guitars operates its own factories and is known for manufacturing guitars not only under its brand but also for producing instruments for several other well-known guitar brands.

Many of these partnerships involve the production of guitars at different price points to cater to a diverse market. Some of the guitar brands that have utilized Cort’s manufacturing facilities include Ibanez, Schecter and PRS…etc

As an example, I have a Schecter Hellraiser Hybrid PT-7 as well as an Ibanez AR300 which is made in South Korea by Cort Guitars and also the subject guitar, Cort G300 Raw made in Indonesia by Cort!

Check out my Cort guitar reviews here (more reviews will be added!)

Cort G300 Raw

Cort G300 Raw is a double cutaway, modern-designed electric guitar that belongs to their G series. Even though Cort Guitars features multiple guitars within different segments under the G series, the G300 Raw is definitely a model that stands out!

Cort G300 Raw
Cort G300 Raw – Some things are better raw!

Cort G300 Raw shares similar features with its counterpart series G300 Pro, however, the body design is very unique in comparison not only to the G series but also to many guitars in the market.

It comes with an African mahogany body and a 6mm thick walnut top. You heard it right, there’s a walnut top and the body is chambered!

It also features a pair of Seymour Duncan JB (SH-4, Trembucker version) and Jazz (SH-2) pickups which are possibly the most popular humbucker guitar pickups in the universe! Mind you that this pair of pickups are probably the pickups that I have used the most, so there will be a separate review article coming soon!

Cort G300 Raw has a 5-way switch that gives you classic bridge, bridge and neck and neck only positions as well as in-between positions where you can combine the outer and inner coils of each pickup! You also have a simple master volume and tone on the guitar with Alpha pots.

Cort has come up with their own tremolo bridges that are similar to the Gotoh 510 tremolos. In order to provide perfect tuning stability, this tremolo system is also complimented with a Graph Tech® Black TUSQ Nut and makes sure you have no issues with the tuning.

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You also have a beautiful rosewood fingerboard that has 24 stainless steel frets! Yes, yet another modern feature on the same instrument! This beautiful fingerboard comes on a nice African mahogany neck with its Ergo-V profile. Lastly, you have the Cort’s locking tuners for maximum tuning stability and ease of restringing.

Before we dive into details and my review of this instrument, let’s have a quick look at the tech specs first.

Cort G300 Raw Tech Specs

ConstructionBolt-On
BodyAfrican Mahogany
Body DesignChambered Body
Nut Width1 21/32"(42mm)
TopWalnut (6mm)
NeckAfrican Mahogany
(Ergo V, Graphite Bar Reinforced)
FretboardRosewood
Compound Radius(12"-15.75")
Frets24(Stainless Steel Frets)
Scale25.5"(648㎜)
InlayLuminlay Side Dots
TunersCort® Staggered Locking Tuners
BridgeCort® CFA-III Tremolo
PickupsSeymour Duncan® SH2N & TB4 Humbucker Set
Electronics1 Volume, 1 Tone, 5 Way Switch
HardwareChrome
StringsD'Addario® EXL120
NutGraph Tech® Black TUSQ Nut

As you can easily see from the tech specs, Cort G300 Raw is a modern guitar with features that can be only found in higher-segmented instruments while being able to stand out from the crowd!

As far as I know, there are not many guitar models that have this unique chambered body design and this is one of the reasons that got me hooked up with this instrument. Before we dive into my review of Cort G300 Raw, I would like to share my no-talking review and sound demo with you!

In this video, I used my Cort G300 Raw along with Marshall JVM410H, RedSeven Amp Central IR Loader/Load Box directly into my RME Babyface PRO audio interface. I also added Eventide SP2016 reverb as an effect.

Cort G300 Raw Review & Sound Demo (no talking)

Cort G300 Raw Review

Apart from a couple of potential issues, I am blown away by this instrument! The raw feeling of the wood across the whole guitar is amazing! You really can feel the wood and it makes the playing experience a breeze.

As it features a slightly chambered body, you have a very lightweight guitar with lively acoustic sounds that translate into a great overall instrument for any genre of music!

Headstock

Cort G300 Raw features a classic Cort headstock that can be found on many similar Cort guitars. This reminds me of Suhr’s headstock design which has a distinct modern look. As the guitar is completely raw and features no finishing, the headstock also feels the same and gives you a completely raw wood feel!

Cort G300 Raw Headstock
Cort G300 Raw Headstock – similar to Suhr’s design!

The only problem here is that there’s only a single string tree. I noticed that the G string’s angle was a bit lower than the other plain strings (E and B) and looked a bit weird to my eyes. However, it’s just my opinion that these kinds of guitars should have a pair of string trees rather than one. The angle on the G string is not creating any playability or tuning issues at all.

Tuners

As mentioned in the tech specs, Cort used their own branded locking tuners on the G300 series and they perform pretty well. During my play tests, I had no tuning issues and tuning your guitar is pretty easy and smooth with these locking tuners!

Cort G300 Raw Headstock back
Cort G300 Raw Headstock – Cort branded locking tuners!

Graph Tech® Black TUSQ Nut

Cort G300 Raw features a Graph Tech® Black TUSQ Nut and as you may probably know these are the industry standard guitar nuts for modern guitars. I think they made a great decision to implement this standard feature. Nowadays, I would be really surprised not to see a Graphtech nut on any guitars at this price tag.

However, there’s a minor issue with the nut installation. Although they cut the nut perfectly in terms of string slot depth, they failed to level the nut from both sides of the neck.

Cort G300 Raw Nut Issue
Cort G300 Raw Nut Issue – not levelled with the neck

As you can see from the image above, the excess nut on the low strings is pretty much visible to the naked eye. The high strings part is not that bad but still, it gives you the feeling that this guitar was manufactured with urgency.

In my opinion, guitar frets and nut craftsmanship should be always the top priority for guitar manufacturers as if these fail, you really need to invest in a brand new guitar to get these fixed.

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Neck

I wasn’t able to detect how many pieces are used in the neck but I believe there are 2 pieces that I could see already. As I mentioned in the tech specs, Cort G300 Raw has an African mahogany neck all in raw form and feels great to play!

Cort G300 Raw Back
Cort G300 Raw Back neck and the beautiful back!

I played many Cort G series guitars back in the day and I always liked their neck profile. Cort usually prefers a very slim neck in this series and this one is called Ergo-V. It’s one of the most comfortable necks I have played (along with my Charvel Pro Mod DK24).

The carved neck joint makes it super comfortable to reach high registers without any strain on your body! Mind you, it features a compound radius fretboard that starts with 12 inches and goes up to 15.75 inches! The only visual issue I noticed was the excess neckwood that was visible under the neck pocket.

Cort G300 Raw Neck Joint
Cort G300 Raw Neck Joint – very comfortable!

As you can see from the image above, it’s just a visual issue but I would prefer a perfectly matched neck and neck pocket. Just for your information, this neck is also reinforced with two pieces of graphite so the stability of the neck has been maximised!

Fingerboard

As you may know, there has been this CITES regulation that stopped guitar manufacturers from using rosewood for quite some time. However, recently we have started seeing the rosewood on the guitars again!

Cort G300 Raw also features a nice rosewood fingerboard with loads of grains and various shades of brown colours.

Cort G300 Raw Rosewood Fingerboard
Cort G300 Raw Rosewood Fingerboard

This rosewood fingerboard definitely is responsive to your playing and provides a great attack and tone. Combined with 24 medium-jumbo stainless steel frets, it’s a breeze to play this guitar with any demanding guitar technique.

I was really not able to put this down for hours and just kept playing. As it’s a very lightweight instrument, it’s not really taxing to play it standing up or seated.

Body

As I kept mentioning in the article, the body design is probably the most unique feature of Cort G300 Raw! It has an African mahogany body (back and sides) and a 6mm thick walnut top! The body is chambered and you can definitely feel how this improves the acoustic vibration of this instrument!

Cort G300 Raw Cavity/Chambered Body
Cort G300 Raw Cavity/Chambered Body

You can actually see the chamber inside of the guitar if you remove the cavity. Note that, it’s not fully chambered. The chambered sections are located around the electronics cavity and where you lay your arm on the body.

Pickups and Electronics

The pickups on the Cort G300 Raw is a classic pair and as I mentioned in the beginning, these may be the most popular humbucker pickups in the universe! Cort G300 Raw features a Seymour Duncan JB (SH-4, Trembucker version) and Jazz (SH-2).

Cort G300 Raw Pickups

I used these pickups for the longest time among other pickups that I have had experience with. When I first got my custom guitar back in 2006, I went for the same pair and used them for a long time!

Then when I got my first Ibanez AR300 (made in Korea), I immediately replaced the pickups with Seymour Duncan JB and Jazz (SH-2). So for me, these feel like home and I am very used to how they sound and I think they are probably the best overall humbucker set for any genre.

Cort G300 Raw features a classic 5-way (mega switch) switch with a simple master volume and tone layout. Apart from classic bridge, neck and bridge and neck positions, you also have these in-between positions that activate the inner and outer coils of each pickup, giving you a lot of versatility.

I also checked the wirings on the cavity and I must say it’s a pretty clean wiring in there. As you can see from the image below, they carved a bit of additional wood layer where this cavity meets with tremolo cover. But again, this is just a visual issue.

Cort G300 Raw Electronics
Cort G300 Raw Electronics – pretty clean wiring!

Apart from that, I also tested the pots and did not like how these were installed. The tone pot was scratching the surface of the body and both pots were pretty tight and difficult to turn and adjust.

As you can see, they use Alpha pots which are not the best choice for guitars, but they do work and function without an issue. Last but not least, the pickup selector switch was pretty OK but still not so consistent with the selections. Sometimes they would get stuck or jump to the next pickup position if you are not careful.

Issue with the Pickup Installation!

The issue with the pickup installation was probably the most annoying one out of all the things I detected on this guitar. The bridge pickup was mounted a bit badly! As you can see from the image, the inner coil side was closer to the strings than the outer coil side.

Cort G300 Raw Pickups Installation Issue
Cort G300 Raw Pickups Installation Issue

As these are direct-mounted pickups, they use some kind of foam to compensate for the tension that you create by tightening the screws and the springs. So I believe this can be fixed by removing the pickup and adjusting the foam. However, it was not something you could fix by simply pushing the pickups from the side and expecting it to get fixed.

You may say why this is a big issue, but it really is an issue. As you can see, the pole pieces have different distances to the strings and this caused an unbalanced output on the bridge side. When you bring the bridge pickup closer, then the already-close section gets really close to the strings.

Also, when you use in-between positions and activate inner coils, you have pokey sounds! As I mentioned before, when I notice such simple issues, I immediately think that someone at the factory did not spend sufficient time paying attention to these details!

Bridge

The tremolo bridge on the Cort G300 Raw is a Cort branded one, Cort® CFA-III Tremolo and it is a very similar design to the Gotoh 510 tremolos.

It is a great tremolo bridge and already set up perfectly for how the majority of guitar players would use it. However, I would definitely readjust it to a position where I can pull G, B, and E strings based on my preference.

Cort G300 Raw Bridge

Even though this tremolo is similar to a Gotoh 510 one, the thickness of the tremolo block is nowhere near Gotoh!

Luminlay Side Dots

Last but not least, Cort G300 Raw features glow-in-the-dark or luminlay side dots! Even though, some people on the internet claim that these do not glow, I wanted to show you how much they glow!

Cort G300 Raw Luminlay Side Dots
I think this is a great feature for guitar players who gig often. As Cort G300 Raw is an absolute player’s guitar, this feature will really help people on dark stages!

Box Content

Cort G300 Raw comes in a standard Cort guitar box and you only have a set of allen keys, a spare spring and a small rod for truss rod adjustments! As you can already see, the headstock does not have a truss rod adjustment pocket. Instead, they implemented a modern take and placed the truss rod adjustment pocket on the other end of the neck! So you will not be looking for an allen key, they got you covered!

Allen Keys & Spring & Truss Rod Adjustment
Allen Keys & Spring & Truss Rod Adjustment

Verdict

As you can see from the tech specs, features and deep-dive into important aspects of an electric guitar, Cort G300 Raw offers an extremely high value/money! Most of the features on this guitar can only be found on pretty high-segmented instruments.

Especially, original Seymour Duncan pickups, stainless steel frets, African mahogany body with a walnut top (that’s unique!) and the neck are important factors to go for this guitar.

Cort also released alternative options under this G series and you have the option to go for the Cort G300 Glam version which features pretty much identical specs (even a chambered body too!) but without the raw feel, instead, you have a nice, 80’s vibe finishes!

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On top of that, you also have the option to go for the G300 Pro series which features a basswood body (without a chambered body) but has the same specs as G300 Raw and Glam versions. I believe at this price tag, there are not many electric guitars that offer the same specs.

I would still prefer Cort G300 Raw over any G series that I tried. The only option that would get me thinking twice would be the Cort G-Custom (no longer available) that I had the chance to play and demo back in the day.

Check out my Cort G-Custom review here

 

As I have given you an example from my collection, I’m playing multiple guitars which are made in Cort factories. It’s how much they have been able to dominate the guitar market! You may be even playing a guitar that is made in Cort factories without even knowing! 🙂

Where to Buy Cort G300 Raw?

As you may already know, my preferred online retailer for musical instruments has been Thomann for a long time! So I purchased one from Thomann very recently,

Check out Cort G300 Raw price and availability here at Thomann

However, you can also check out Reverb as well. I have been also purchasing musical instruments, accessories and any relevant pieces of equipment from these well-known platforms as well!

I hope you have enjoyed this real guitar review article and materials. Thanks for visiting my blog and supporting me so far! I will hopefully see you in the next review here!

Osman Cenan Çiğil – cigilovic.com


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