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Canada: Guitar Buying: Fender or Martin (Ships to Canada?)

Old 10-23-07, 09:49 AM
  #26  
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Do you know anyone that plays? You may be able to get a better guitar for less money if it is used.
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Old 10-23-07, 10:12 AM
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IMO you need to play an acoustic guitar to buy it. You can sit in a room with 5 Martin D28's and each one will have different tonal characteristics. Martin in trying to reach out to more customers has developed cheaper instruments and they are simply not worth it IMO. I am not sure if they still have their Sigma line but those were well built cheap guitars, poor tone but would last for ever. You have to ask yourself what you want a guitar for and go from there.

It is true though that today there are far more choices for inexpensive guitars that are actually descent. Epiphone and Washburn come to mind. I've seen all sorts of guitars come through my repair shop in the last 15 years. Quality in most cases has gone up while price has gone down. The typical 3-400 dollar guitar today should at least have a solid wood sound board. This makes a big difference.

It's tough for Martin because they have to compete with them selves. The holy grail Martins as has been mentioned are the older pre war Martins and they simply do not build them that way. Martins mistake was in offering a life time warranty. Now they build guitars to last a life time instead of building a lightly constructed guitar that sounds amazing but has to be babied and cared for in ways most people don't want to deal with.

Taylors are very nice indeed. Tough choice!

I can go on and on but...
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Old 10-23-07, 10:22 AM
  #28  
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Agreed on the Martins. Just depends upon the individual and what you are after I guess.

I walked away from buying one the other day after playing a lot of different brands and models. Just couldn't pull the trigger on a new one. Used one maybe.

What impressed me the most were Breedloves. Rich, warm sound. Very playable. Great value. I had never played one of them before.

Liked the Taylors too though.
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Old 10-23-07, 10:41 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by jfmckenna View Post
I am not sure if they still have their Sigma line but those were well built cheap guitars, poor tone but would last for ever.

Taylors are very nice indeed. Tough choice!
I love the sound of my old Sigma DR7, but I am one who loves a bassy sounding rosewood guitar. It is much easier to play than any Martin D28 I have ever handled, but it also lacks the volume of a D28.

If I had the money to buy a new Guitar today, it would be a Taylor. They are the best mix of sweet tone, playability, and projection at a reasonable price of any guitar I am familiar with.
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Old 10-23-07, 11:13 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by Grun View Post
What is the difference of Dreadnaught shape and Auditorium shapes?

Which is better?
EDIT...I just checked that and I don't think there is a size difference as I initially said in this post. The dreadnought is simply a newer design, to maximize the face size for sound volume. Most people prefer the look of the dreadnought as well - slightly squarer shoulders and flatter butt, but still with sexy curves.

That's my understanding, anyway.

A lot of acoustics now come with a cutout shoulder, to help you reach the highest notes on the fretboard, but that might sacrifice a little bit of tone, and perhaps makes it easier to damage the guitar if you bump or drop it.

Or perhaps jfmckenna can comment on that...?

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Old 10-23-07, 11:37 AM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by Olebiker View Post
If I had the money to buy a new Guitar today, it would be a Taylor. They are the best mix of sweet tone, playability, and projection at a reasonable price of any guitar I am familiar with.
One of the best things about Taylor for many people is their necks. They have been able to make a really thin neck with low action that still stays straight, especially for their 12 strings. Some like my self actually prefer a more chunky Martin type neck.

Originally Posted by cooker View Post
EDIT...I just checked that and I don't think there is a size difference as I initially said in this post. The dreadnought is simply a newer design, to maximize the face size for sound volume. Most people prefer the look of the dreadnought as well - slightly squarer shoulders and flatter butt, but still with sexy curves.

That's my understanding, anyway.

A lot of acoustics now come with a cutout shoulder, to help you reach the highest notes on the fretboard, but that might sacrifice a little bit of tone, and perhaps makes it easier to damage the guitar if you bump or drop it.

Or perhaps jfmckenna can comment on that...?
It's hard to tell the difference in tone with cut out vs traditional bodies if you ask me. There is less volume of air in the sound box in the cut out obviously but it's hard to tell a difference in tone between the same guitars. I've tried it several times. One would suspect that the cut out might tend toward the highs but that can be remedied by making the side depth a bit deeper. There may be a reduction in audible volume in the cut out but again it's a hard sell. I would guess that area of the guitar is not terribly important in sound quality but reducing the size may reduce audible volume. I wouldn't think it would be more susceptible to damage though.

Personally I like the traditional design but I rarely play past the 14th fret. Classical guitars are only 12 frets clear of the body and you have all the notes you need right there
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Old 10-23-07, 11:46 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by jfmckenna View Post
One of the best things about Taylor for many people is their necks. They have been able to make a really thin neck with low action that still stays straight, especially for their 12 strings. Some like my self actually prefer a more chunky Martin type neck.
My hands are so small that a D28 is nearly impossible for me to play.
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Old 10-23-07, 11:55 AM
  #33  
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Just go play them and pick the one you like the feel and tone of the best.

Honestly, I'd go for a stratacoustic if I went fender, just because I like the shape of strats.
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Old 10-23-07, 02:36 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Olebiker View Post
My hands are so small that a D28 is nearly impossible for me to play.
I assume that's because it is a deep neck that's hard to get your thumb around. But you might also have problems with a wide neck. All the more reason for the OP to go play them all a few times in a shop.
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Old 10-23-07, 02:39 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by jfmckenna View Post
I wouldn't think it would be more susceptible to damage though.
Yeah probably not for most, but I wrote that after seeing a picture something like this:



I think it would be easy to nick that sharp edge.
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Old 10-23-07, 05:45 PM
  #36  
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If you're near Toronto or Montreal, you should go to Steve's Music.

You must play guitars before deciding on one.

Taylor is the only "mass" acoustic guitar I'd bother buying nowadays. Guild is nothing like what it used to be. Fender is overpriced for what you get. Martin is Martin which, to me, is boring.

I play an old Yamaha acoustic that was dirt cheap and it still sounds amazing considering how little I paid for it. Also, don't get caught up in thinking you need a really expensive guitar (like a Taylor) to play a small to mid-sized gig. Hell, look at Willie Nelson's guitar sometime.
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Old 10-23-07, 07:01 PM
  #37  
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The Taylors I have played are very easy to play and have a nice tone but I play Bluegrass. I'll take my Martins with the high action,great tone,a few tortise shell picks and I'm a happy camper.
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Old 10-24-07, 07:23 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by dcon View Post
Hell, look at Willie Nelson's guitar sometime.
Which happens to be an old Martin
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Old 10-24-07, 09:59 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by mtnbiker66 View Post
T I'll take my Martins with the high action
And that's another point...the guitar is set up for the music you play. Someone playing bluegrass with a Martin D-28 may want the bridge and/or nut and/or neck adjusted to give a high action (strings well above the fretboard) so they can really hammer those bass notes hard without the string buzzing on the higher frets.
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Old 10-24-07, 10:05 AM
  #40  
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+1 you need to play the guitar. Guitars are built with different scale necks (fret spacing) and you may be more comfortable with one scale. Personally, I like Martins, have played Taylors that are nice, and was really surprised at the great sound and nice neck on a new Guild.

Even high bling guitars have significant quality variations within a run. I bought a Gibson that I later found out was impossible to set up because the grain in the fingerboard opposed the grain in the neck too much to true. On the other hand, even cheap guitar makers might turn out a real great instrument every now and then. You only know if you try.
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Old 10-24-07, 03:11 PM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by AJU View Post
+1 you need to play the guitar. Guitars are built with different scale necks (fret spacing) and you may be more comfortable with one scale. Personally, I like Martins, have played Taylors that are nice, and was really surprised at the great sound and nice neck on a new Guild.

Even high bling guitars have significant quality variations within a run. I bought a Gibson that I later found out was impossible to set up because the grain in the fingerboard opposed the grain in the neck too much to true. On the other hand, even cheap guitar makers might turn out a real great instrument every now and then. You only know if you try.
True that. They all have their own sound. I would never buy a guitar without playing it.
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Old 10-24-07, 04:23 PM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by jfmckenna View Post
Which happens to be an old Martin
...still waiting for a point to your post, if there was one...
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Old 10-24-07, 04:27 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by mtnbiker66 View Post
The Taylors I have played are very easy to play and have a nice tone but I play Bluegrass. I'll take my Martins with the high action,great tone,a few tortise shell picks and I'm a happy camper.
That's cool. I meant no disrespect to Martin. Their guitars are as perfect as a guitar is going to get. Knowing what you want is critical to being happy with your guitar.
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Old 10-24-07, 04:49 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by dcon View Post
...still waiting for a point to your post, if there was one...
His point (as I understand it) was that Willie's vintage Martin is worth a lot more than a new Taylor.
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Old 10-24-07, 04:59 PM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by cooker View Post
His point (as I understand it) was that Willie's vintage Martin is worth a lot more than a new Taylor.
Yeah, I just felt like being a prick...which I am, in case you missed it.

I'll admit, I could have chosen a better example. I was thinking mostly along the lines of not always looking for the shiny new guitar. I've found guitars in the past (in between the shockingly expensive vintage stuff and the brand new stuff) that were used, ugly, sounded good, and were worth looking at.

Should have just said that. I was in a hurry, Willie's guitar popped into my head, and I posted without thinking.
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Old 10-24-07, 06:17 PM
  #46  
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If the OP is looking for a nice sounding guitar on a budget he might consider the Johnson Carolina series. I was really impressed with the sound the one I played had. I always thought of Johnson as a guitar I would recomend to a student just starting out.
https://www.johnsongtr.com/Acoustic.22.0.html

You could also look into Blueridge,Tacoma,and Washburn. If you have a little cash lying around you could also check out Collings,Gallagher & Bourgeois
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Old 10-24-07, 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by dcon View Post
That's cool. I meant no disrespect to Martin. Their guitars are as perfect as a guitar is going to get. Knowing what you want is critical to being happy with your guitar.
I really like martins but there are a ton of great guitars on the market. Now if I could get Tony Rice to give up his.........
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Old 10-24-07, 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by mtnbiker66 View Post
If the OP is looking for a nice sounding guitar on a budget he might consider the Johnson Carolina series. I was really impressed with the sound the one I played had. I always thought of Johnson as a guitar I would recomend to a student just starting out.
https://www.johnsongtr.com/Acoustic.22.0.html

You could also look into Blueridge,Tacoma,and Washburn. If you have a little cash lying around you could also check out Collings,Gallagher & Bourgeois
You'd tell a student to play with his Johnson?
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Old 10-24-07, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by CrankshaftYQX View Post
You'd tell a student to play with his Johnson?
WOW................Buahahahahhahahahaahahahahaha.........................
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Old 10-24-07, 07:45 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by CrankshaftYQX View Post
You'd tell a student to play with his Johnson?
HA HA HA. I have yet to see a good Johnson (guitar wise guy) butwho knows?

I think the moral of the story is that we all agree that the OP really ought to buy an acoustic guitar at a shop where he can sit and play it for a good long time. Maybe even take a few weeks to decide. Within any brand guitar and in the same model you can find many differences. I have a Yamaha classical guitar for example. It's not a good guitar by any means but it was the very best of the 4 same models I played in the store. Then out fitted with a bone nut and saddle and set up real nice it makes a fine travel guitar.
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