Martin versus Santa Cruz

Martin versus Santa Cruz

I’m trying to decide on a good rosewood dread for rhythm playing and accompanying Irish tunes (in the style of bands like Solas, Dervish, Lunasa, etc.). I think it’s gonna be between the Martin D-28 and the SC D/PW. I love the thump of the bass on both the D-28 and the D/PW, although the D/PW seemed to be "fuller"… Any suggestions?

Thanks,
~Sean

Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

Nope.



Enjoy!

stv

Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

Our guy plays a D-28, and it sounds great.

Jim

Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

Martin D28- waited 30+ years to buy one; grovers, wonderful guitar. Not to say that the santa cruz is a fine guitar but its not a MARTIN

ps still couldn’t aford a D28 :-)

nuff said; now back to figuring out the Walls of Liscaroll on the pipes

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Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

I once owned a Martin HD28—great guitar. But the Santa Cruz’s I’ve played I liked even better.

Not aiming this at I_Fel, but sometimes people get too hung up on brand names instead of listening to individual guitars and thinking about the particular sound they want. Might be a Martin, but it might be a any host of others.

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Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

Will- you are absolutely correct. My eldest daughter and I walked in to a small guitar store and I picked up a small 000 size guitar. I have no idea who made it ( small luthier custom) but I would trade my Martin for it. Never played a guitar with such a sound. My daughter said that it sounded like a harp tinkling (sp?). I coulkd not believe the sound that came from it


Now, about a seth gallagher C set ;-)

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Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

I would recommend trying out a smaller body guitar, that is smaller than a dreadnaught. I previously owned a Martin D-28 Herringbone with gorgeous tone and beautiful wood. A few years ago however, I traded it in for a Martin 00 Grand Concert. It has also has great tone, I get compliments about the tone it all the time, and it’s much more comfortable than the D-28. No regrets about the trade. I don’t think I could ever to back to a bigger body guitar. I’m partial to Martins. They set the standard.

Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

Lovely problem. The Martin would probably be easier to sell on or trade-in against another model but I think the SC pre-war is the business for sound and feel. So if you can afford to keep a dreadnought "forever" buy the SC but buy the Martin if you can only afford one guitar at a time.

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Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

"What about a Taylor…"

I have a Taylor 814ce currently. The verdict: excellent plugged in, not-so-good unplugged. True, it’s a gigantic step up from my entry-level Fender DG-8 that is currently collecting dust, BUT it’s just not a "session" guitar…It would be better off in the hands of someone touring and recording in a studio extendsively, and even then it would prob. pale in comparison to a Martin utilizing a good microphone setup…

"…or Lowden…"

I tried a used Lowden 032, I believe it was, at a guitar store and was amazed. I play almost extensively in DADGAD and loved the resonance and "thump" of the low D string. However, it had some finish issues and as far as the Jumbo body went, I liked the Gibson SJ-200 alot better. But when I picked up the Santa Cruz…magic!

Not to say I wouldn’t buy a Lowden in the future…prob. a mahogany dread to complete my "John Doyle Tribute Band" guitar collection!

Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

Played in many bands with many different guitarists playing on various instruments. Love the sound of the Lowden best of all, both acoustically and amplified.

Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

oohh- Gibson SJ-200- not a bad choice either

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Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

Man, go to the store, or better yet, borrow or rent some instruments and play them at a session. I played in a group that recorded a bluegrass album a while back, and the string bass player—a jazz guy who could play anything—played his Czech wooden bass on it. However, one day, he came in with an old plywood bass, and we were all knocked out by the completely great and appropriate sound he was getting that day. It actually sounded much better for the music we were playing (old-time and bluegrass). You may find a big, rich sound too much for a session, and if you do, you’ll rue spending thousands of dollars on it. Happens all the time, dude.

Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

When you are guitar hunting in the D28 et al. price range do not get your heart set on a brand ahead of time. You’re going to be buying one particular instrument, and you’d better like that one, regardless of what you think of the company in general or of your buddy’s instrument that they made. Identical-model instruments will sound different from each other.

Don’t rush the process. Keep on playing ‘em and eventually one of them will demand to be bought.

If you’re not sure which instrument, size, etc. then either draw out the process or go into the purchase with the attitude that within a year or two you may change your mind, take a 20% hit selling the first one, and get the right one.

Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

Sean — I live near Harrisburg, PA and have never found a store to compare SC to Martins. Are you going inot Philly to make the comparison or is there a store I haven’t heard about/seen locally with a selection of boutique guitars?

/tca/

Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

moregan is right. Keep on playing anything you can get your hands on. I’ve played Martins, Larivees, Taylors and a couple of Gibsons 35 years ago. I went into a music store a few years back, picked up a Santa Cruz, and haven’t put it down yet. It was/is something special (to me.) However, difference of opinion is what makes for horse races. Forget the name. Buy what you fall in love with.

Re: Martin versus Santa Cruz

Incredible!
I went to Mandolin Brothers in Staten Island NY yesterday; I played around 40 guitars.
Larrivee, Martin, Avalon, H and D, Santa Cruz, Breedlove, Guild… and guess what it all boiled down to…
Yep, the Martin HD28 and the SC D/PW.
The Martin was $2020 and the SC was $2250 (cash)!
And like you I was saving for years, I’ve been looking around for a month or two and went to 5 or 6 fretted instrument specialty stores. (Ya gotta try Mandolin Bros.)

I wasn’t even considering a Santa Cruz, but from other "auditions" I was using the Martin HD28 as my standard.
The Avalons are amazing, but most of them have electronics on board, not for me.
Denny, the floor guy handed me the SC D/PW.
Blown away - completely different sound from the Martin - the SC was so crisp and clear. The bass was full but not boomy, the midrange and treble…brilliant.
The Martin was good/great, rounder, meatier maybe; it just lacked the sparkle and clarity I found in the SC.
I played them side by side for half an hour, I even had some other players in the store play then for me so I could hear them straight on.

I put a deposit on the Santa Cruz…but you should try them out yourself.
The place is on Staten Island NY near the Varrizano Bridge.
On the web they have directions.

Sorry I was so late on this post but good luck!

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