Hi. I'm from Canada. I was recently in a music store here that has both the LL6 and LL16. They are priced at $699 and $999. $300 difference.
I can say beyond a shadow of a doubt that if you pick up the LL6 and play it for ANY amount of time, then pick up the LL16, you will NOT put down the LL16 and never touch the LL6 again.
I just couldn't believe the difference between the two. The LL16 just rings forever. I've played in bands. I'm an avid finger style guitar player now on acoustic. As such, I went looking for a new acoustic as my 28 year old acoustic has really run its course and went through two sons jumping on it, caving in the top, basically destroying it, lol.
Still works, but was just time for a new one to last another 28 years. I searched and researched and played countless acoustics in different cities and stores.
Then I found the LL16. It killed everything they had in the acoustic room (including the LL6). I left the store blown away, but without the guitar. Kept looking around. Saw it in another store. It killed everything in that acoustic room too. This happened 4 seperate times, in 4 seperate stores. I just kept coming back to it. $6000 Martin's, $4800 Taylor's, you name it. The best way to describe it in comparison to other acoustics is to say that it rings, its loud, and hands down has more personality and colour to its tone and expression.
I can't say enough about this acoustic. The look of it is standard issue spruce top, but it is very nice looking and the colour of the top, because of the ARE process gives the spruce top a more vintage yellow look to it in comparison to the almost 'white' spruce top of other acoustics. In other words, it looks better. More unique. Aged. Just better, period. The LL16D ARE model is the same except it has the extra abalone around the spruce top face and all surfaces INSIDE the soundhole/body of the guitar are sanded smooth. I played both and didn't notice a difference in sound between the D model and regular. However, the D model with the abalone trim around the whole body absolutely makes the guitar look considerably more magical to my eyes, but this can be said for most guitars with additional 'bling'. I will say though that an acoustic with abalone trim around the entire face of an acoustic should always be standard as it just really increases the look and class of an acoustic. However the price for this in this case is an additional $300 for the abalone trim and sanded interior. To me, it's worth it when you see it in person.
I played everything. And I mean everything I could get my hands on. Though each guitar is it's own voice and everyone is looking for a sound that fits what's in their head, I think a majority of acoustic lovers have that quintessential woody, warmth in their head with a great sustain, resonance and presence.
This IS that guitar. I promise you. I highly recommend 80/20 phosphor bronze on this guitar (you'll see why) and in this case the plastic nut and saddle are great. We all know the inevitable "just change the nut and saddle and it'll blow your mind maaaan" comments that come from some tone hound out there who's more concerned with modding than playing.
Knock yourself out. But it doesn't make a lick of difference to me. Changing the nut and saddle makes the guitar sound "different" NOT "better".
This guitar sounds amazing as it is. I can only see it getting even better as it ages.
Playability? Jesus. Nothing like it. Just play it. Nothing I say can replace getting it in your hands. Open tuning, capo'd anywhere on the neck, Eb, bar chords, everything resonates on this thing.
Quality? I don't have to explain Yamaha quality to you. If I do then you haven't researched enough. Keep going. Yamaha is infamous for their quality. They make grand pianos for crying out loud! One thing really worth mentioning here though is that they use an actual dovetail joint between the neck and body. This is the "expensive" way of mating neck and body and is usually reserved for higher end guitars because of the complexity and labour involved.
It makes a huge difference in sound and vibration. Speaking of vibration, you feel your whole body vibrate when you do anything on this guitar. It just sings. It really does.
A beautiful guitar. Gold hardware finishes it off. And man....the smile you get when you play it.....just, well, go play it....you'll see what I mean.
LL6, although a great quality build, sounded more like every other guitar in the room. The other acoustics I liked were the Taylor Grand Pacific, any martin cedar top, nothing by gibson unfortunately. The Martin D-18, 28, etc...not even close to this guitar in my opinion. It truly is exceptional and a rare animal.
After purchasing and spending an obscene amount of time getting to know her, it just keeps getting better and better as my hands memorize the curves and subtleties of its tonal characteristics, and reveals what it wants from me.
In my personal opinion, having always had an acoustic as a "therapy device" for life in general, the holy grail of an acoustic is the quality of the "conversation" you get to have with it. The best dialogue I've ever had with an instrument, hands down. I've gotten lost for hours with this guitar. That's the whole point. Cheers.