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jwsamuel
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« Reply #100 on: March 04, 2005, 05:19:21 PM »

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what ever happened to the Sigma brand? i dont see them anymore. some of those were not bad guitars. some even came with solid wood bodies, tops and back, at least. did martin drop the sigma line?
When CF Martin IV took over Martin, he decided that the Sigma brand was just another one of his father's mistakes. Two of the things he cited, in the discussion I read, was the quality control aspect of importing guitars and the increasing cost of doing so.

They still import one or two models but have cut down the line significantly. Instead, Martin has been working to make guitars in Nazareth that it can sell to the lower-price markets instead of importing Sigma.

I have a Sigma DR-28H that I have on ebay right now and it is a surprisingl nice guitar.

Jim
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Caleb
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« Reply #101 on: March 04, 2005, 05:21:34 PM »

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what ever happened to the Sigma brand? i dont see them anymore. some of those were not bad guitars. some even came with solid wood bodies, tops and back, at least. did martin drop the sigma line?
When CF Martin IV took over Martin, he decided that the Sigma brand was just one o his father's mistakes. Two of the things he cited, in the discussion I read, was the quality control aspect of importing guitars and the increasing cost of doing so.

They still import one or two models but have cut down the line significantly. Instead, Martin has been working to make guitars in Nazareth that it can sell to the lower-price markets instead of importing Sigma.

I have a Sigma DR-28H that I have on ebay right now and it is a surprisingl nice guitar.

Jim
thanks for the info. it does make sense to build lower line martins here in the states rather than importing.

one more question: i heard that martin is going to be moving production of their lower line to mexico. any truth in this?
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jwsamuel
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« Reply #102 on: March 04, 2005, 05:29:12 PM »

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what ever happened to the Sigma brand? i dont see them anymore. some of those were not bad guitars. some even came with solid wood bodies, tops and back, at least. did martin drop the sigma line?
When CF Martin IV took over Martin, he decided that the Sigma brand was just one o his father's mistakes. Two of the things he cited, in the discussion I read, was the quality control aspect of importing guitars and the increasing cost of doing so.

They still import one or two models but have cut down the line significantly. Instead, Martin has been working to make guitars in Nazareth that it can sell to the lower-price markets instead of importing Sigma.

I have a Sigma DR-28H that I have on ebay right now and it is a surprisingl nice guitar.

Jim
thanks for the info. it does make sense to build lower line martins here in the states rather than importing.

one more question: i heard that martin is going to be moving production of their lower line to mexico. any truth in this?
The already make the LX1, LXM and other little Martins there. People who have asked the company have been told it is something they are looking into. Doing so would do two things. It would give them lower cost labor for lower cost markets and it would help them build more high end guitars in Nazareth without having to expand again.

Jim  
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Caleb
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« Reply #103 on: March 04, 2005, 05:45:52 PM »

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what ever happened to the Sigma brand? i dont see them anymore. some of those were not bad guitars. some even came with solid wood bodies, tops and back, at least. did martin drop the sigma line?
When CF Martin IV took over Martin, he decided that the Sigma brand was just one o his father's mistakes. Two of the things he cited, in the discussion I read, was the quality control aspect of importing guitars and the increasing cost of doing so.

They still import one or two models but have cut down the line significantly. Instead, Martin has been working to make guitars in Nazareth that it can sell to the lower-price markets instead of importing Sigma.

I have a Sigma DR-28H that I have on ebay right now and it is a surprisingl nice guitar.

Jim
thanks for the info. it does make sense to build lower line martins here in the states rather than importing.

one more question: i heard that martin is going to be moving production of their lower line to mexico. any truth in this?
The already make the LX1, LXM and other little Martins there. People who have asked the company have been told it is something they are looking into. Doing so would do two things. It would give them lower cost labor for lower cost markets and it would help them build more high end guitars in Nazareth without having to expand again.

Jim
thanks... makes sense, but i dunno, i think theres just something very "american" about a martin. they should be built here---all of them imo. good thing my opinon doesn't count, huh?
 :lol:  
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ducktrapper
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« Reply #104 on: March 04, 2005, 06:08:44 PM »

JW - And as you stubbornly ignore my point all you do is tell me that your opinion is better than mine and assume that I don't like Martins. I don't like this corporate decision that Martin has made. You can't make me like it. If I understand your opinion, Martin has not and probably will never make a "mistake" that you can't rationalize. Fine. If Larrivée uses Micarta, don't think for a second I'll be rationalizing that decision. I'll be bemoaning it.
BTW - Some Sigmas are fine guitars. They ain't Martins and in my opinion either is a backpacker or a D1. Good night Irene.  
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jwsamuel
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« Reply #105 on: March 04, 2005, 06:37:07 PM »

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They ain't Martins and in my opinion either is a backpacker or a D1.

Then define it.

What is a Martin?

What is a Larrivee?

What is a Taylor?

Insert the name of any guitar manufacturer and tell me what it is.

Jim

 
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Sabatini
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« Reply #106 on: March 04, 2005, 06:54:37 PM »

Jim,

I think I agree with Ducktrapper on this one.  To me the name "Martin" always had a certain mystique and commanded a certain respect.  I would guess that was part of the reason they called the imports that were made to their designs "Sigma" instead of "Martin."  Gibson once reserved the Gibson name for a certain level and below that called them Epiphones, even though some were fine guitars.

I think when you put the name "Martin" on a backpacker it reduces the desirability of the Martin name.  Now someone with a backpacker can say "I play a Martin," and technically they are right.  And, they can advertise a used Martin for sale.  But, if I go to their house to see it I will be disappointed.

Martin has made marketing decisions about the use of their name and that is their right.  I guess whatever they choose to call a "Martin" is a "Martin" whether it is an HPL laminate made in Mexico or a C.F. Martin Acoustic Condom.

But some of the stuff they are putting the name on does not meet the expectations I grew up associating with the name.

Rob
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Rob Hanesworth

'91 Larrivee JB-09 with Sitka top/Indian Rosewood back and sides (12-fret 00 size)

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« Reply #107 on: March 04, 2005, 07:02:30 PM »

Thank you Rob. I knew there was a plainer way to state my feelings on the subject.  
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bri
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« Reply #108 on: March 04, 2005, 07:26:17 PM »

You are all entitled to your opinions on what is 'right' for a company to do, but I think the general public accepts that the current Martin lineup (minus backpacker) is all "Martin". Even the bottom rung LXM and DXM, in my and others' opinions, has the "Martin" sound even though they are HPL. HPL is still better quality than some other manuf's 'laminate' materials. The reason D15, D16, and lower series were allowed to have micarta, ramped and parallel pin slots, etc is because they are the test-bed where Martin is allowed to experiment. D18 and up has become a standard, where, although I believe they might have had ramped/parallel pin slots at some point, the 'accepted' version doesn't, so Martin does not want to tweak them anymore. IMO Martin is doing their corporate duty as the de facto standard and large manufacturer to try out new designs which people WILL buy.
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jwsamuel
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« Reply #109 on: March 04, 2005, 07:41:22 PM »

Rob,

I actually agree with you.

I have a Martin D28 and I think it is a great guitar. When I decided I wanted an OM, I went out and the first thing I looked at was a Martin OM-21, then an OM-16GT. I was ready to get the OM-16GT for $798 when I found the Larrivee OM-03R for $799. I thought the Larrivee was a better guitar for the money, so that's what I bought.

The fact that I decided the Larrivee was a better choice for me does not make the Martin any less of a Martin. It just means that for my needs and taste, the Larrivee was better for me.

My disagreement with ducktrapper was based on his comparison of non-like models, such as comparing the bottom end 03 series Larrivee that sells for $700-800 to the bottom end Martin D1, that sells for $400.

So, the comparison should be at like price points and that means to compare the Larrivee 03 series to the Martin 16 series. Both have solid tops, both have solid back and sides. The big difference is the Micarta fretboard.

I personally did not like the Micarta fretboard, thought it was not all that bad, and that was the major factor that led me to look at the Larrivee. But again, that doe snot mean that Martin is wrong for offering it.

I also think that Martin is being wise in looking at alternative materials, just as Taylor is wise in looking at new ways to make guitars. They may not be to our liking right now, but the new materials will improve as manufacturers gain more experience with them.    And now that we see woods like mahogany being added to the secondary CITES list, it's only a matter of time before traditional woods just won't be available in low to medium price guitars.

I look at the materials the same way I look at the mortise & tenon neck vs dovetail joint. The 16 series and lower Martins now have M&T joints, the 18 and up retain the traditional dovetail. Taylors have a modified M&T joint. Larrivee has dovetail. With a lot of custom builders going to the M&T, and there no longer being any real need for the dovetail joint, I think we'll be seeing more and more high-end guitars using the M&T joint in years to come. Will that make them any less of a guitar? I think not.

What we are seeing is more innovation in the use of materials and manufacturing methods right now than at any time is guitar history and I think it will be good for all of us in the long run.

And I think that then, as well as now, the best thing to do is not get hung up on particular manufacturer but to try as many guitars as one can and choose the one you like best.

Jim  
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Sabatini
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« Reply #110 on: March 04, 2005, 07:45:44 PM »

Absolutely right Bri.  We are just exchanging opinions.  I'm certainly not trying to make any rules for anyone else.  I just see the lower end market as being more than adequately covered with some fine guitars made by Ibanez, Takamine, Alvarez, Yamaha, Cort, and others (who DO somehow seem to make a buck importing guitars, despite the mistakes of CFM IV's father  ;) )

Martin is free to market what they want and I'm free to decide whether I will pay their price for their product.  We call it a free market and it works for me.

Rob
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Rob Hanesworth

'91 Larrivee JB-09 with Sitka top/Indian Rosewood back and sides (12-fret 00 size)

Taylor GA7 -- Alvarez AP 70

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« Reply #111 on: March 04, 2005, 08:04:56 PM »

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has the "Martin" sound
Years ago, Zenith used an advertising slogan "The Quality Goes In Before The Name Goes On."

Just a fun question:  Does the "Martin sound" go in before the Martin name is affixed or does affixing the name impart the sound?

I don't question that Martins, particularly the high end dreds have a special sound.  But has anyone ever done a controlled blind experiment to see if that sound is identifiable when you can't see the logo, especially on lower end products?

I recently saw that Peter Yarrow had recovered a Larrivee dred that was "lost" in an airport a few years ago.  I had seen Peter, Paul, and Mary in concert and bought CDs with that guitar on them and was surprised to find it was a Larry.  I had always thought it was a Martin 12-fret slothead (HD28V, is that the model number?).

Rob
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Rob Hanesworth

'91 Larrivee JB-09 with Sitka top/Indian Rosewood back and sides (12-fret 00 size)

Taylor GA7 -- Alvarez AP 70

jwsamuel
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« Reply #112 on: March 04, 2005, 08:27:08 PM »

Rob,

The HD28V is a 14-fret dreadnaught. It is essentially the HD28 with a V-shaped neck. (the V stands for Vintage, not V neck).

If the guitar was a 28 series dread, it would probably have been an HD-28VS. Martin 12-fret guitars all have the S at the end for slot head.

Jim
 
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LookingForLarri
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« Reply #113 on: March 05, 2005, 04:36:54 AM »

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today we think we have to have a brazilian rw guitar to sit on our couch and play.
 :blink:
I know my dog really prefers my 96 Taylor brz over the Martin 16 micarta I have.  I think the thinness hurts his ears   :unsure:  

Me, I like them both...  :D


Not sure if the couch has a preference one way or the other  :huh:  
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« Reply #114 on: March 05, 2005, 05:29:26 AM »

Oh my goodness, Martin DOES have a very distinct, identifiable sound.
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Big Martin
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« Reply #115 on: March 05, 2005, 02:58:24 PM »

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today we think we have to have a brazilian rw guitar to sit on our couch and play.
 :blink:
I know my dog really prefers my 96 Taylor brz over the Martin 16 micarta I have.  I think the thinness hurts his ears  

Me, I like them both...  


Not sure if the couch has a preference one way or the other  :huh:
Dana Bourgious' dog has learned a lot about the contribution of different fretboard materials to a guitar and is pleased that Dana will only use wood and tries to match what a fretboard will sound like to a guitar design..

I think I remember hearing that Leo Fenders dog was very pleased with both maple and rosewood fretboards including the extreme difference in each

Les Pauls dog reputedly could not even stand ebony fretboards - must've bitched at Les profusely

My dog hasnt missed my micarta martin that was just sold one bit.

glad we can tell the difference...    
WOOF!

Get off that couch!
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