the most outstanding acoustic guitar you have ever played?

Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by slinger, May 24, 2018.

  1. P Thought

    P Thought Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    I don't get around much any more, so don't remember specifically any of the fine Collings, Santa Cruz, Martin guitars I've played while out "shopping". But I'm damn happy with my top two Takamines, and still crushing on the latest one, a 2005 LTD.
     
  2. elihu

    elihu Poster Extraordinaire

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    My favorite one is a early 50's Gibson SJ 200 at Craig's Music in Weatherford Texas. It has a natural wood finish and more than it's share of nicks and scratches but it sounds like heaven (even with old rusty strings!) It's light, resonant and has the most perfect feeling neck.

    Ten thousand dollars was the price.
     
  3. basher

    basher Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    A neighbor of mine had an Olson dreadnought that he'd borrowed from somebody else. What an incredible guitar. Hugely responsive. I could feel the notes jumping out from under my fingers. The guy said he was going to gig with it as much as he could and try to beat it up enough that the owner would sell it to him. I don't know if he succeeded.
     
  4. asatfan

    asatfan Friend of Leo's

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    I played a handful of Greven guitars back in the 80s and 90s when John lived here in S Indiana. I still think about them. I always thought I'd figure out a way to own one....

    The 2005 Larrivee OM-50 I just purchased from Elderly a few weeks ago is high on the list.
     
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  5. nocastermike

    nocastermike Tele-Meister

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    Martin d45. I have 2. Both are fabulous but the 2008 is magic. Complex, overtones galore. Just a dream guutar. I gig it every day.
     
  6. NashvilleDeluxe

    NashvilleDeluxe Tele-Holic

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    The most outstanding I've ever played is my own...a 1991 Martin HD-28. But it's not always consistent. On humid August days, my S6 Seagull is more stable.

    In fact, given the dozens of acoustics I've been fortunate enough to play, only a few had any kind of WOW factor. My dad had a 1970's Yamaki that was far from high-end, but has it has fantastic growl to it...he gave it to one of my friends who still plays it.

    Another standout is an HD 28V owned by another friend, but like mine is fussy about humidity and strings (type and age). I hate the V neck shape, but I do like the forward shifted bracing.

    I really want to like Taylor, but I have yet to play one that puts that big smile on my face on the first strum. I've played more Taylors than Martins, too. I'd love to have more experience with Collings, Bourgeois, Froggy Bottom et al, but if you like the Martin dread sound, it's hard to do better than a GOOD HD 28.
     
  7. Charlie Bernstein

    Charlie Bernstein Poster Extraordinaire

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    I'm not fussy, and I'm no artiste. For me, there are just two kinds of acoustic guitars: the ones that jump to life when I play 'em, and the ones that don't.
     
  8. Charlie Bernstein

    Charlie Bernstein Poster Extraordinaire

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    About five pounds.
     
  9. RoscoeElegante

    RoscoeElegante Friend of Leo's

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    Whoo-whee, there be VOODOO in that thing! I actually leaned toward the screen staring at it. Niiiice.
     
  10. RoscoeElegante

    RoscoeElegante Friend of Leo's

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    I left out of my list the other day the 1969 Martin D-21 I had, and lost to divorce #1. Too painful to remember. The poor thing hung like a captured resistance fighter on the wall of the local music shop for months before I went the eBay route. (All those cold hands on my guitar! How dare they pick it up! How dare they put it down!) But my oldest son just graduated 8th grade--high school next year, ALREADY?!--so my defenses are down about bittersweet things.

    Lordy, that thing was lush. The first time I put it into open D (the good one, the one with the F# in it), I just about cried at the...majesty. You had to play the bass strings near the saddle to give some edge to the Martin dreadnought boom. But there was every guitar sound you could imagine in that thing.

    I've never played a Collings, which seem to be upper-echelon stuff. But with few exceptions, all the great acoustics I've heard or played have been old or well aging Martins. There's just such a ringing clarity, a depth of definition, about them, that they are the acoustic world's Tele.

    Great thread, by the way!
     
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  11. Jack S

    Jack S Friend of Leo's

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    I play a Collings 0002H that I love, but for me there are a handful of beautiful sounding guitars I have played. On the other hand, I think it depends on the music I want to play with a guitar. For example, I think an old Stella sounds better for a rural acoustic blues tune, than a more expensive guitar because it simply has the sound that works for music. Some songs sound better with a classical guitar with nylon strings than a steel string.
     
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  12. Henfield Tele

    Henfield Tele Tele-Holic

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    Got to agree with that. I have the same d18, love the understated looks and wonderful playability. And then theirs the sound..superb. IMG_0407.JPG
     
  13. Middleman

    Middleman Friend of Leo's

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    D45 many years ago in Kansas City, and a D41 (in a Las Vegas GC) last year. Both were full, rich, articulate and hung in the air. Pure magic.
     
  14. canuck guy

    canuck guy TDPRI Member

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    My current Martin HD28VR is pretty good.
    I've played many nice ones.
    The one that still haunts me is one about 20 years ago.
    I played and went back several times. It was beyond my means at the time and when I finally said I would get it anyway it was gone.
    It was a Taylor 514 CE Mahogany Cedar top.
     
  15. Jonzilla

    Jonzilla Tele-Meister

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    I played a 1939 Gibson J-35 that was in excellent condition. Felt, sounded, and looked amazing. I'll never forget it!
     
  16. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Poster Extraordinaire

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    I played a pretty plain finished Larivee and it blew away dozens of others I’d been trying in my hunt for a smaller acoustic. Foolishly I thought I’d try looking a bit longer. Big mistake.
     
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  17. bottlenecker

    bottlenecker Friend of Leo's

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    A collings j style, with a very close second by a collings dreadnought.

    I was looking for a bottom heavy dreadnought sound that could give a heavy chug on the low strings, and give that scooped sparkle dreads have. I played through a lot of stuff in a store that specializes in high end acoustics. Out of 4 Martin dreads, two had enough bottom and two didn't. Most of the other dreads didn't compare well for the sound I wanted. The collings dread was the best, but the two martins were probably close enough. But the j style actually gave me every bit of low chug that I thought had to come from a dread, but with a more balanced, less scooped sound. It may not have as big of a voice-shaped hole in it's midrange, but it could be a finger picker, flatpicker, and anything else too. Played very nice, as you'd expect for $5k, but the sound is what I care about and it was the best of any flat top I've played.

    Wait, I just realized you didn't say flat top, so I'm going to amend my answer to the 20s L5 archtop a shop owner insisted I play, just because I love archtops best.
     
  18. David Barnett

    David Barnett Doctor of Teleocity

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    I have never seen nor heard, much less played, a Martin Jumbo. How are they?
     
  19. Paul in Colorado

    Paul in Colorado Telefied Ad Free Member

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    '39 Martin 00-45. It was being brokered to sell by by a friend who had a music store. Played like a dream and sounded amazing. I understood why CSN&Y liked old Martins so much.

    For a modern guitar, I played a 2010-ish Gibson Kris Krisofferson signature Southern Jumbo. I could play anything in any tuning on that guitar and it sounded good. One of those "if I only had one acoustic, I'd own this one" guitars. The guy at the store said, "It needs some adjustments. It'll play a lot better." Jeeze. It's had to imagine it sounding or playing better. I didn't have $3K in my pocket so someone else has it now.
     
  20. orangeblossom

    orangeblossom Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    The 12th fret in Toronto had a 2005 Martin d-18 authentic which blew me away. It was used and $5000. For three weeks it haunted me. I phone the store to buy it and just missed it. Anyway it was the best playing and sounding guitar I tried.
     
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