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Author Topic: What do you guys think about Gibsons(acoustic)?  (Read 14059 times)
es-335
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« on: June 13, 2008, 06:04:26 AM »

I think they are amazing!!

Ya,  I love larrivee!! but MAN!!, their J200, J45 and Hummingbird are just FANTASTIC..

So, today, I ended up ordering a J45....

I was thinking of J45 RW, but I think J45 is all about HOG...

I hope, I've made a right choice...

But what do you guys think about gibson acoustics?
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« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2008, 06:38:36 AM »

I've always dreamed of owning a left-handed hummingbird, especially after they started making that vintage burst finish... "modern classic," I think they call it.  But after I got my D-03R, I kind of gave up the dream.  At least until I make my millions and can buy whatever guitars I wish... 

I have several friends with Gibson Acoustics, and they are all, without exception, amazing instruments.  Probably a little overpriced, but that's part of good branding.  However, since Larrivées (IMHO) are every bit as good and sometimes even better AND cheaper... well, that's why my loyalties will lie with Jean forever.  People just need to hear what we know about Larrivée and once they do, we need to buy stock. 

I wonder when I'm done with the military if Jean would give me a job doing his marketing work... 

Oh, and good call on the Hog.  I think the day is fast approaching when mahogany is going to be an even greater upcharge...
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« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2008, 11:47:21 AM »

The old Gibsons from the 40s/50s are legendary, with good reason, they are usually great instruments.  The newer ones can also be great, but quality and consistency is spotty, IMO.  Every time I try the wall of new Gibsons at a guitar shop, maybe 1 or 2 out of 10 will impress me.  Whereas with Larrivee, at least 7-8 out of 10 are great sounding right off the wall.  Some recent examples of shoddy fit & finish on new Gibsons turns me off, especially when they are charging TOP dollar for their brand.  But when you get a good one, the big warm tone of a J-45 is like nothing else. 
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« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2008, 12:20:18 PM »

The old Gibsons from the 40s/50s are legendary, with good reason, they are usually great instruments.  The newer ones can also be great, but quality and consistency is spotty, IMO.  Every time I try the wall of new Gibsons at a guitar shop, maybe 1 or 2 out of 10 will impress me.  Whereas with Larrivee, at least 7-8 out of 10 are great sounding right off the wall.  Some recent examples of shoddy fit & finish on new Gibsons turns me off, especially when they are charging TOP dollar for their brand.  But when you get a good one, the big warm tone of a J-45 is like nothing else. 

Yeah, have to agree here.  I've tried several new Gibsons over the past few years.  Many were good, a few excellent but there were almost as many that left me underwelmed.  I particularly like the Advance Jumbo.  The ones I tried were superb.  Big round tone with plenty of volume. 

I have also had the good fortune of having tried a few mid 50's J-45s in the last little while...those are hard to put down.  The couple I've tried were the type that were beat up, scratched, dented...mojo oozing all over....gotta love that. 
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« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2008, 01:54:16 PM »

I play a 95 or 96 Vintage AJ and love it.V'ed neck,slope shoulder.I've played hundreds and most are ok.I agree with John and Denis.
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« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2008, 02:30:11 PM »

I live in the Nashville area where the Gibson's are made. I suggest you find a video tour of the factory. I think the one I saw was on Youtube. Then compare that to the tours of Larrivee, Santa Cruze, Martin, Yamaha that are available.

Then you may understand why a good qualtiy Gibson is ' hit and miss '.
They don't pay much and based on how often they were running ads in the local paper for workers I'd venture a guess that the turnover rate of workers is pretty high. There are lots of good jobs in this area and it is hard to find good workers.

I've only owned one Gibson - a B25 back in the 70s. I could not keep it in tune and traded it for an Ovation or Guild (I forget which.)

Gibson became famous back when there was not much choice. You could buy a junk, toy or get a Gibson or Martin.
That was about it. It did not take a great guitar to beat the junk you could order from a department store. IMO, Gibson acoustics were and are way over rated.

I certainly would not buy a Gibson without playing it first. Larrivee on the other hand, well, I recently purchased a Larrivee SD-50 from Guitar Adoptions without having seen or heard the guitar  -   'nuff said.

- Larry
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« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2008, 02:36:14 PM »

I live in the Nashville area where the Gibson's are made. I suggest you find a video tour of the factory. I think the one I saw was on Youtube. Then compare that to the tours of Larrivee, Santa Cruze, Martin, Yamaha that are available.

The acoustics are made in Montana.
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« Reply #7 on: June 13, 2008, 03:02:24 PM »

Quote
  The acoustics are made in Montana.

Montana ?  I didn't know cowboys knew how to make guitars !   

Looks like I need to do some homework. I thought the factory here made acoustics.
Maybe its mandolins they make here.
I will also go back and find the video tour of the factory I saw and see if it identifies it as Nashville or Montana.

AFter seeing the video I was not impressed (be it Nashville or Montana)
- especially compared to other company videos such as Larrivee, Santa Cruz, Martin and Yamaha.

I'll find the video and post a link.
" The truth is out there "   bigrin
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« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2008, 03:35:09 PM »

ok, think I got this figured out.
The ' factory tours' are more like infomercials than a documentary.
They have NASHVILLE all over them -   (sales pitch)
and they show acoustics and acoustics being played by famous artists in these videos - in what appears to be the Nashville location.
So its easy to get the impression acoustics are made there.
My mistake - sorry about that.

here is one link
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DzxV1_ZGj4w&feature=related

here is another
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EYN_K9dVYVQ

I guess its like Martin not going out of their way to let you know some of there stuff is done in Mexico now.
Gibson probably would rather sell the NASHVILLE image.

I found the details of WHAT is made WHERE at wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gibson_Guitar_Corporation

My opinion of Gibson acoustics and why I have that opinion remain the same.

Thanks for catching my misunderstanding of where they are made now.
I don't want to distribute incorrect information.

- Larry
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« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2008, 03:48:40 PM »

I have two Gibson Lefties.   A 2001 Hummingbird and a '93 Gospel.   the plane-jane Gospel actually sounds better to my ears than the Hummingbird which cost about 3 times as much as I recall.  They are both excellent guitars but I've grown to appreciate the Larrivee sound a little more.  Now the Gibsons don't get much playing time.   The Hummingbird is up for sale in fact.  (in hopes that a 000-50 my be in my future)   I think, as others have said, the Gibson acoustics are not consistently excellent;  some are great others are average.  I think that some of the Gibson guitars are  overpriced and you really have to decide if it's worth the extra $$$ to have "Gibson" on the headstock.
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« Reply #10 on: June 13, 2008, 05:20:29 PM »

i've played some older gibsons and really liked them for the most part.

with the newer ones, a lot of them are hit and miss. Im pretty set on buying a new hummingbird when im no longer poor, but i want to get the true vintage version.  i dont need or want to electronics that come in the standard line of them.   I would need to try it out before i bought it though, and ideally have 2 or 3 of the same model there to compare them against eachother. it'd be hard to ask a shop to order in over $9000 in guitars just to send one... so it could mean a road trip to nashville, bozeman or the canadian distributer.
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« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2008, 09:37:24 PM »

One of the best guitars I've played was a Gibson and so was one of the worst. I don't really like the big jumbo's or most of the stuff from the 60's and 70's I've played. I do like the J-45 type guitars and some of the small bodies.
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« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2008, 10:24:49 PM »

     I like Gibsons more than most Martins, but I agree with everyone else it is hit and miss with them. Especially today with the ones out of Bozeman. But I have played more nice than bland.
     Yours should be fine, just remember it won't sound like a J-45 from the 50's for awhile. The wood needs to open up and settle in. (thats my term). But it will only improve with age. As long as you don't let it dry out. My favorite would be a Southern Jumbo natural. A close cousin to the J-45. But shoulder trouble has me down sizing. So an Arlo Guthrie would be nice. But for now if I feel the need for Gibson I'll try and tune up my old B-25 and strum some bluegrass or Neil Young tunes. Danny
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« Reply #13 on: June 14, 2008, 04:45:20 AM »

What do I think about Gibson acoustics?  I think they make/made hands down the very best sunbursts out there.  For some reason, none of the other large volume makers come close.
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« Reply #14 on: June 14, 2008, 06:00:41 AM »

I think they make/made hands down the very best sunbursts out there. 

They most certainly do! Some sort of magic at the Gibson factory when it comes to sunbursts. Without doubt the most consistently nice looking, perfectly balanced, paint jobs out of any major guitar plant.
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« Reply #15 on: June 14, 2008, 06:39:15 AM »

Nitrocellulose
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Too many guitars... But I keep thinking one more may just do it.
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« Reply #16 on: June 17, 2008, 03:18:05 AM »

I found a real nice Advanced Jumbo that I bought about six months ago. I had been half-heartedly looking at J-45s for a couple years when I found the AJ marked to a price I couldn't resist. I ended up taking it home.....

Hopefully you'll get a good J-45 and be happy as well.....
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« Reply #17 on: June 17, 2008, 03:19:17 AM »

BTW...who did you order the J-45 from?
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« Reply #18 on: June 17, 2008, 08:21:42 AM »

A friend of mine (who is also a luthier) recently bought a 1935 L-00 here iln the UK.  It hadn't been played for a while and is certainly a bit worn and battered.  A new set of strings improved things initially.  However after about a month that guitar was transformed.  It has now come alive and is one of the loudest, sweetest sounding instruments you could wish to hear.  The V-shaped neck is also surprisingly easy to play, fitting comfortably into the shape of your hand.

I think you have to be selective with the newer instruments (Gibson, Martin or whatever).  I recently saw a new Gibson AJ in a shop and the bridge was glued on at an odd angle! How did that get past quality control?
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« Reply #19 on: June 17, 2008, 12:32:52 PM »

I have only owned one Gibson (and not one of their better ones) and it didn't sound good at all, so I sold it a few years back.
My biggest problem with Gibson is their appointments. I find the mustache bridge a bit ridiculous in appearance and the graphics on their weird-shaped pickguards to be a distraction, at best.
This is all a matter of personal preference, though, to be sure.
I recently played a Hummingbird at a local shop to see what I might be missing.
Maybe it just had old strings or simply wasn't one of the good ones...
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