Sure Cholly - But you can tell whether a guitar fits your hand, whether the neck is a comfortable shape that allows you to make chords more or less easily. As far as tone, you can pluck the open strings and hear whether they ring or buzz or thump, and you can decide whether you like ringing, buzzing, and thumping.
I do recommend trying things out, guitar-wise. For my money, Gibsons are a great combination of sound and playability but I don't expect I'll ever buy one. Every Gibson I've held has felt a little off in my hands. Others swear by them. To me, nothing sounds as good as a Martin and not plays as easily as a Taylor. All that said, when I bought a high end guitar, it was a Guild. I tried Gibsons, Martins, Taylors, Larrivees, and quite a variety of guitars, but the Guild jumped out as sounding and feeling the best to me. Up until putting my hands on them, and hearing them being played, I'd never have thought that I would pick a brand owned by Fender. I don't particularly like Fender's acoustic instruments, but here it is. A high end guitar I never considered from a brand I would have ignored and it's the one I decided to plop my money down on.
Granted B chord amnesty by King of the Mutants (Long live the king).
If it comes from the heart and you add a few beers... it'll be awesome! - Mekidsmom
When in doubt ... hats. - B.G. Dude