Godin has some guitars out now that represent incredible bang for the buck. Assembled in the U.S. out of Canadian parts, the lower-end of the range, the LG, is really a tremendous instrument. This one is a lovely red over mahogany, with the grain visible, and black hardware.
While a pretty basic guitar, the sunken bridge and very comfortable body contouring give it a little extra style.
The design is very reminiscent of some of Gibson's offerings, particularly the classic Les Paul Junior. I'm not fond of the heavy Les Paul designs, but the Les Paul Junior is one of the few Gibson guitars I might consider actually buying one day. However, with instruments like this LG available with decent build quality and a more comfortable playing experience, it's hard to get as enthused about the Les Paul Junior anymore.
This is an older LG, with the "tetrad" pickups, and pulling on the tone control engages a coil tap.
The only design elements I don't really like are these grooves into the body to allow the strings to reach ferrules that run through the body, for extra sustain. They just seem slightly cheesy, and the ferrules have some problems: they are a little fiddly when trying to thread the strings, and they introduce a sharp edge where the strings tend to break.
The only other thing I'd change is to provide a truss rod cover; even on a basic model, this should not be really considered optional. But despite these minor shortcomings it's really a very attractive and playable package, and I'd whose-heartedly recommend a used LG to any student looking for a decent and economical instrument, but I also wouldn't hesitate to play a real gig with mine.