Paul Schneider has flown under the radar for a long time. He was with the Flatiron Mandolin company and a consultant at Gibson before going off on his own to produce the Summit Mandolins. His mandolins are hand-made with all solid woods and finished with varnish. This one has never been played-it's new-old-stock, an instrument we've had stashed away for a dozen years. It's "x"-braced, and has figured maple back and sides with what looks like a master-grade European spruce top. The fingerboard isn't radiused. And we replaced the original bridge (it's in the case) with one from Cumberland Acoustics. The resulting tone is warm and bright and balanced. It's an over-achiever - it holds its own with much more expensive instruments!