Gibsons and Martins?

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

All guitars are good for ITM, especially the yamaha 310, about $120 dollars.

But the Chinese guitars are best.

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

Hohner.

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

How about buying one that uses eco-friendly American wood, instead of destroying forests in other countries ?

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

For years I played a Martin, one of the cheaper models. I can’t remember the model name/number but it cost around €1000 in Ireland - it had a lovely action and the intonation was spot on. I used it for playing all sorts of styles of music, including some Irish stuff in DADGAD. I’ve never tried a Gibson though and haven’t played guitar for quite a while but would always recommend Martin. Find a dealer that sells them and try a few out…

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

Most Irish players would probably prefer a Martin type sound so try a Martin but also consider a Collings, Santa Cruz, Breedlove or Larrivee (all US made). Most people would go for a dreadnaught but try an OM or a OOOO (wider than OM but same depth).

"Old time" players would nearly always go for a Gibson sound so you could look at Gibson or again Collings.

Bottom line is let your ears and hands decide.

Enjoy the shopping, there’s nothing nicer than sitting trying out instruments when you have the budget to buy them if you really like them.

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Re: Gibsons and Martins?

I had a Breedlove OM-R for a while, it was excellent, but I saw a note somewhere that Breedlove are no longer made in USA, and the particular dealer no longer stocked them because of quality issues. Martin and Gibson are usually great, but so are Collings and Santa Cruz, and there are loads of smaller companies, like Bourgeouis, and independent luthiers who make fantastic guitars. We are living in the Golden Age of the acoustic guitar, never before have such fine instruments been so abundant and easily available.

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

Everything in the US of A now is made in China, so you may have to go abroad to buy an all American guitar.

And being serious for a minute, any guitar with six strings on it will do the job. You will be a backer, not Johnny Fean or Richard Thompson.

I suggest you go on YouTube and listen to some traditional music. That may enable you to realise that my advice is sound.

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

Martin is farming out work to Mexico now anyway…

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1071604/posts

And Bodhran, I must politely disagree…. I don’t think anything with six strings would do. There are some pretty unplayable and awful sounding instruments out there, while many reasonably priced ones are very good. A decent instrument that plays easily makes one want to play better.

I often wonder why good old walnut, black walnut, are so neglected. It is cheap, pretty, and a way wonderful sound. I have two of them and like them better than my rosewoods, even any Brazilian, especially when they are broken in well. They are deep and warm sounding. And beautiful patterning in the wood.

Musiciansfriend.com has just come out with Silver Creek guitars, they are very inexpensive and they have some in solid woods for under $300. hard to believe…. I suspect they could be the new "Blueridge" type. Probably Chinese or overseas made, they’d likely have to be, but curious if anyone has tried one yet? The last thing I need is another guitar, yet I still want to try them all. BTW…. with musicians friend, you have 45 days returns on anything, and they do honor it cheerfully.

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

Ha.. it’s not the guitar as much as what you do with it..

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

The new Martin low end models (DX??? I think) sound really nice for the money. I helped a friend who was looking for one, and that’s what he wound up choosing. I think $499 for a standard and $699 for a cutaway.

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

I prefer Martin Guitars but that’s just me. A Gibson or any other brand to your liking will just fine… the things you should really take into account are:

The feel of the guitar, wood choice, and bracing:
Assuming it is a good quality guitar w/ a solid Spruce or Cedar top…
Rosewood back and sides are darker in tone.
Mahogany back and sides are brighter.
Maple back and sides are very bright.
Walnut similar to Rosewood.

Guitars with lighter bracing tend to favor bass response (Martin D35-D28)
Guitars with heavier bracing are a bit more mid range-ish and/or brighter (Gibson Doves, Hummingbirds, J-45’s, J200’s)

Most importantly trust your fingers and ears when choosing. The feel of the guitar is as important as any other factor and good tone comes from the fingers. Trust your judgement. Good luck!

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

Your low end (Affordable) Martins and Gibsons, have not been made in the US for some time. And the expensive ones are built at the expense of all kinds of rain forests and life styles. I would stop worrying about what the label says on the instrument you buy and buy one that sounds good. I’v recently become a admirer of Godin, or Seagull, Made in Canada with north American wood, I like em cause they’re well made and sound good.

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Re: Gibsons and Martins?

There are distinctive sounds associated with certain Martin models and they’ve been moderately consistent over a lot of years. I haven’t seen that consistency with Gibsons. They’ve made some great instruments, though.

Some people say that Collings makes the best Martins. They’ve copied the Martin models and they build them immaculately, but, to me, they don’t sound like Martins.

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

It depends on your style partly. If you go for loud syncopated bashing or neat vamping triads for example. I think the 00028EC is the best balanced guitar I’ve heard in ITM. It’s also a really comfortable shape for sitting . I think it’s worth finding a guitar that doesn’t sonically break up or get over bright as this seems to be the sound that annoys tune players. I’m very happy with the sound of my M36 though it’s too big to be comfortable in a session & need to be underplayed to get the best tone. I try to re-create a piano vamping style & the super clear bass seems to work quite well.

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

The trouble with buying a "name" is that you’re doing just that - buying a name - and you will pay hundreds extra for the privilege.

Martins tend to be preferred in ITM - I love the D28 - but a good Gibson J45 is fine.

A good old Guild can sound as good as anything else I’ve heard - many of the greats used Guilds, Brady and O’Domhnaill (RIP) for example.

Taylor make excellent guitars but they are expensive.

There are loads of other makes - the best guitar I’ve heard recently was a McElroy - made by a chap who worked at the Lowden factory.

Personally I have two hand made Joe Foley guitars and a Guild D30.

You need to try a lot of guitars and decide what you like - often the best guitar is not the "name" one……

Hope this helps.

Re: Gibsons and Martins?

Spelling makes a difference…I believe that McElroy is an American independent luthier, somewhere in the north-west. The ex-Lowden guy is named Dermot McIlroy.