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Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by El Tele Lobo, Apr 7, 2021.
That's truly a beautiful guitar. And here's to you still being alive, my friend. God bless you.
You won’t be disappointed. They’re amazing.
I’d also check out Goodall, Bourgeois, Huss and Dalton, and Santa Cruz for due diligence.
Absolutely go for it. I'm rooting for you!
I feel for you after your last post, but it sounds like now is the time to stay with and play the blues on your Epi. Better days are coming.
You can't go wrong OP.
I agree...all great guitars. If you're falling in love with the Martin 0000-M size and shape, most of the brands mentioned are crafting round shoulder and small jumbo sizes that would compete with Martin's Quad (0000). But for the best bet in that small jumbo category, I'd stick with Martin's Four-0 or just plai
You won’t be sorry. The absolute best D-28s I have ever played are Collings D-3s. Lovely instruments. And they will only get better with time.
I’ve gotten to play someone else’s at an old time session a few times and it was one of the nicest acoustic guitars I’ve ever gotten my hands on.
Collings don’t suck. Got mine in the 90s.
I’m consciously trying not to play one. I’m currently saving/waiting for the right special occasion to get the right OM-28 to pair with my Gibson Songwriter. I don’t need something to tell me there’s better fish out there...
I'm guessing you got it at The Twelfth Fret. I've spent a lot of time there over the years. Sold stuff on consignment. Took some lessons and then bought my AM Tele there. As a rule I avoided playing the Collings guitars because I know myself well enough that if I played one I would want one, even if I used a credit card.
My last purchase there was a guitar I had wanted for years. And I was able to pay cash. It's a Martin 0000/M-21.
I have owned about 10 Martins of various design. I now have a 00-18 that is my baby and an older D-28 that I don't really play much. There is a small guitar shoppe here in Orange County that sells Collings' guitars and I have been bit hard by that bug too.
I have the money, my girlfriend and I have separate finances, so I can buy whatever I want. I want a Collings guitar.
Once you play one, it's hard to shake the feeling.
This isn't a really compliment for an acoustic guitar. Mass in an acoustic absorbs output.
And a good dovetail joint shouldn't need to be reset for decades. I'm not saying the bolt-on neck is a bad idea, and I am certainly not saying that ease of repair is a bad thing. I am saying that on a well-built guitar it shouldn't be an issue.
Collings makes wonderful guitars, but they are not my favourite. New ones are a little too green/tight for me.
The top end Martins are wonderful as well, but the ones that are made in Nazareth are entirely different to the ones made in Mexico. The two should not be conflated. The difference is mass production versus individualised production.
Other small shop makers are just a good as Collings and top end Martins. Santa Cruz Guitar Company comes instantly to mind, as does Froggy Bottom, Huss and Dalton, etc.
the point: Man, if the Collings melts your butter, then go for it. But as you'll be saving a while, explore your options at that price. You might find something that blows your mind.
It's not made of hardened A5 steel. It's the construction that makes it solid but resonant; it's the bracing and attention to finish. Of the dozens of Collings I've seen not one had a finish issue aside from user induced scratch. Santa Cruz tended to have the most dramatic checks and used the thickest nitro finishes. I've yet to see a Collings that needs a neck reset or a lifting bridge....or any issue for that matter!
Not all materials and construction methods are equal. Just because the look the same does not mean they are made the same and will age the same.
The Martins I've owned and had issues were TWO brand new D-18 Golden Era with lifting bridge (this was common) and D-28 Marquis with shrinking binding and finish checks as a result (also common). I loved the tone of both but as lifetime investments I got scared away.
Neck resets can be a bummer and take a year or more! I've seen them required in less than 10 years and most Martins are about 20 years away from one. Plus.... Martin no longer covers neck resets in warranties unless loose..... With shortages of Honduras mahogany and lesser quality and other species being used neck resets will be more common. I don't think Martin can be as particular as Collings when it comes to wood selection.
As a flatpicker I've settled on Collings and Martins for MY tone and prefer Collings due to simply higher quality and better value for the $$$ in the long run. My D1A is already fetching used just about what I paid new 5 years ago....
I think one of the issues with ALL modern guitars is the design for pre-war tone built in a new guitar.
Pre-war Martins being the standard had better woods available. Not to say they always selected the best.
Many Pre-war Martins started to fail due to lack of popsicle brace and other issues as heavier strings got used for volume so bracing was beefed up and popsicle braces added. For years D-18s didn't even have scalloped braces which is the key to good tone and takes the most skill.
Fast forward 2021 and we have all sorts of tricks to mimic age. Roasted woods, varnish finishes, removal and slimming of braces. ALL making really cool sounding guitars BUT will they face the issues the authentic pre-war Martins did with modern playing techniques?
I dunno... I shied away from guitars that have or lack these features and luckily dig the tone of my Collings. I'd be real wary of investing heavily in these guitars that are throw backs in a sense that toss out decades of practical experience in search on 80 year old guitar tone NOW!
I'd at least seriously investigate what features are included or excluded if I was making a once in a lifetime investment.
I've seen, and played many Collings guitars.
Probably not surprising, considering where I live.
They look amazing, and are impeccably built and finished.
They play beautifully, too.
I've yet to be impressed with any ,sonically.
They all sound as "bright" as Taylor's, IMO.
Perhaps it's my admittedly mediocre hearing.
I'll hold that consideration open.
Anyways, I'll keep checking.
Until the above post, I was in the "just do it!" camp. Considering your current financial situation and the fact that it's not going to change anytime soon, I would entertain the thought of buying an Eastman OM for about 1/5 of the price of the Collings and have a nice guitar to play now vs waiting while you save for 5 years. They have seriously upped their game in that last several years and hit way above their weight class in fit and finish and tone. https://www.eastmanguitarfans.com/index.php
It isn't that Collings aren't fantastic, they are, and professional musicians who work constantly rely on them because they are so dependable and really cut through the mix. You have to decide if $4k is justified in your case. Yes, you can count on getting your money back on a Collings. When I was considering them a few years back, it seemed that used ones were never more than 5-10% less than new ones.
Yes, actually it is a compliment if you're a touring professional. Collings weigh a little more and have an unforgiving presence in their tone that really cuts through the mix. I'm not good enough to play one cleanly, but a professional musician can control it and make it work for them.
On the acoustic forums there's been a lot of noise about Martins lately. Neck resets have long been a common fact of life for a lot of Martins when they get beyond 20-30 years. But recently, Martin has been having enough trouble with their newer guitars (we're talking 5 years old) needing neck resets enough that they changed their warranty policy and are not blanketly covering neck resets. If my acoustic playing became obssessive enough to drop $4k on a guitar, it would be a Bourgeois.