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  1. #1
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    Default Happy Guitarday!

    Well the wife and I have been talking for a while, and with a full-time job, 2 part-time ones, and all the stuff around the house and such. She said I should treat myself to a new guitar !!! she then asked if I wanted to get the T5 I had talked about !!!!!!

    Well I decided that was a bit more guitar than I actually needed right now. I'd hate to subject such a nice guitar to that much abuse. Now I've been squirreling away pocket change an pizza tips for about a year now. So we decided I could afford a cutaway acoustic with a $1000 budget,. So I did a quick look online and the Taylor Roadshow is gonna be nearby next week, so I signup. I figure there would be a good selection and maybe some discounts. For reference at the show, I started looking around locally this weekend. tonight I end up at that big chain based in California, they have a nice selection both within and above my budget.

    Anyway I've figured out I can afford a 100 or 200 series Taylor. Well after trying a bunch of Taylor's, Martins and Gibsons (That hummingbird was SWEET!). they dig up a real clean used 314, for few dollars over the $1000 mark. This is a better deal than anything I can hope to get at the Roadshow. But I keep getting drawn to a Breedlove Studio D25MSe, just had a nice full sound. So I doubt I'll find anything I can afford at the roadshow that I'll like better, so.... I got an upgrade to a hard case from the padded bag, for no additional cost. Might have been able to haggle more, but that's pretty fair.

    I'm still going to the roadshow, just leaving the checkbook at home. I'll see about some actual pictures and maybe a sound clip.
    Honey, I'm spending money on guitars or women, ... your choice.

    If you take Satan for a ride, pretty soon he'll want to drive.


    Favorite Course - Blues Alchemy
    Working On - Fretboard Epiphanies & Jump Blues

  2. #2

    Default

    The joy of a guitar hunt. Sounds like a great deal of fun. I know that Hummingbird feeling. I know half of it is in my mind, but it feels like magic to hold onto one. I've had those Taylor's in my hands as well, beautiful guitars and I could sit on the Taylor site and use their application to hear how those T-5's sound with different woods and different amps, amazing stuff. Glad you found one you liked, be brave at the Taylor event though.
    Enjoy Your Karma, after all you earned it.
    email: gadlaw@gmail.com
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  3. #3
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    Default

    Congratulations on the new addition. May it give you many years of enjoyment.
    ----------------------------------
    Stay tuned

    Chris

  4. #4

    Default

    Congrats - that's awesome. You will love it. And hang onto that wife too.

  5. #5
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    Default

    Can't wait for a picture or two....nice score
    Too soon we grow old, too late we grow wise

    "I once played notes so fast that light emanated from the strings whereupon, I saw God.... who then told me to relax and start playing music."

    "You know, once you've had that guitar up so loud on the stage, where you can lean back and volume will stop you from falling backward, that's a hard drug to kick." David Gilmour

    Truefire Science Officer (dabgonit....where's my blue shirt!)

  6. #6
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    Default

    I thought I’d expand on the story a bit. I normally try to avoid the chain stores and help out the mom & pop shops as best I can. One shop was a specialty acoustic shop, lots of high-end models, and gypsy jazz models. But he only had 2 cutaway models in the whole store, both in the sub $500 range. One of them was a contender, but was an extremely bright sounding guitar. The other 2 shops were typical music lesson driven shops. They stock primarily what they can sell to their students. Mostly lower to lower-middle end models, with a couple of more expensive models for as examples. Both of these only had a small selection of cutaway models, and none were out of my price rang. So I move on to the chain stores… I start with the New England based one. To my surprise they have no more range of choices in acoustic guitars than the M&P shops. In fact none of the acoustic models was outside my budget. There were 2 smaller shops that were scheduled for this weekend. One of them, based on email w/store, only had a couple of models in my price range. One model was what I ended up purchasing, and one other I had tried lower end variants of that brand. The other is an hour and 20 minute away. They appear to have a couple brands I didn’t try including, Mr. G’s favorite, Guild.

    Some of the guitars I tried.
    Dean and Ibanez – I’m grouping these together because in many ways they are similar, at least with the models I tested. These are really good, what I’ll call, second tier guitars. A step up from that entry-level model you bought when you got started. Most had very good cosmetic appeal. Figured woods, inlays, nice bindings, and bright colorings. Most played pretty good, and were decent sounding. I couldn’t find any specs that stated this, but after playing 50+ guitars this past week, I think they were solid top, but laminate back and sides. By comparison these were a little boxy sounding (All laminate bodies sounded this way to me). Some very pretty, lower cost models may even have had laminate tops as well. Nothing really wrong about any of these, but I was shooting for a third tier guitar.

    One stand out, in my opinion, was the Dean Exotic Wood Cocobolo. Had a nice mellow sound, and was GORGEOUS! But as mentioned just a little boxy by comparison. At $429 ticket price, was on the short list.

    Crafter - (who?) – A Korean based company that makes some excellent guitars. The examples I tried are still second tier (maybe 2-1/2), but less bling and more substance. Again only a guess here, but I think some may have had solid backs as well as fronts. These in many ways sounded similar to the 100 series Taylors, available for a few hundred dollars cheaper. These are the “lower end variants” I mentioned above. The other model (GAE8) might have been a real contender, but I found myself leaning towards the dreadnoughts though. Good value for the money.

    Recording King – Another Korean company. Not really contenders because no cutaway models were available. I just wanted to note that a slope shoulder dreadnought for $300 really got my attention. Was plain, simple, nicely setup, and very pleasing to the ears. Would be most excellent !/$.

    Seagull and Art & Lutherie – Both owned by Canadian company Godin. The Seagull Rustic Entorage and A&L CW models are virtually identical spec wise, very nice Cedar tops and Cherry sides (probably laminate). Pricing was also identical at $499, I felt a slight draw to the A&L sound and feel-wise though. Both are good sold upper tier 2 lines, and the A&L bumped the Dean off the list. Not as pretty, but more solid sound-wise, and not as bright as the 100 Series Taylors. Might have been chosen over a Taylor 100, and would defiantly hold their own against similarly priced Breedloves.

    Epiphone – To be honest I had higher hopes for these, and I was kind of disappointed with the guitars I tried. Generally kind of dead sounding and nothing exceptional about the feel. I was left with kind of an “Eh” experience. Even the flagship DR-500MCE was disappointing.

    Ovation - Hey they were there so I had to try them. The real inexpensive ones felt like toys. The sub $500 were ok, but had that distinctive Ovation sound all over them. The one +$500 available wasn’t bad. Was a round hole model, and had a pretty even sound that wasn’t as “focused” as the lower cost models. The neck felt very much like an electric guitar. A little narrow for finger style playing, but the guitar stood up well to heavy strumming. I guess that’s why these are considered and electric players acoustic. Not a bad guitar, just not what I was looking for.

    Taylor & Martin – Not much to say, these are the lines other’s compare themselves to. As a general statement I think I prefer the Martin sound and the Taylor feel, but only just marginally. The Taylor 100s/200s and the Martin DCX1RE have laminate back and sides. The Martin DC1RE is solid wood and has all over purling (binding). Just amazing the step up $400 buys you.

    The used Taylor 314 was priced (not surprisingly) the same as the new DC1RE I was comparing things to. A $1700 new, priced at $1099 used, is a great deal. And to be honest plugged in the Expression System on the Taylor was superior to the Braggs on the Breedlove. I was just drawn to the Breedlove. In fact they had 2 of the model I bought. This one had a sticker on the ticket stating it was setup and restrung in July, the other didn’t. The newer strings helped and the guitar did seem to be adjusted better. And yes this was determined BEFORE I noticed the sticker. There was a C250 model, $250 cheaper, and sales dude confirmed, it had laminated back and sides. That’s the difference between the Passport and Atlas series.

    So there is the story of my guitar hunt
    .
    I guess this post got a little away from me, thanks for sticking around. I figured others might find my opinions helpful. I did try to be fair in my evaluations of the different makes and tried not to suffer from brand bias. Now I just have to make the time to play with the new girl.
    Honey, I'm spending money on guitars or women, ... your choice.

    If you take Satan for a ride, pretty soon he'll want to drive.


    Favorite Course - Blues Alchemy
    Working On - Fretboard Epiphanies & Jump Blues

  7. #7

    Smile

    Congratulations !!

    Taylor guitars are nice. At my local guitar-shop they have this one fore sale.
    $6000. Have not dared to tuch it.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Larro

    -- If you can dream it, you can do it ! ;)

  8. #8

    Smile

    It is probably something like this you have baught??

    Really a lovely guitar ....
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Larro

    -- If you can dream it, you can do it ! ;)

  9. #9

    Post Congratulations!

    Hey RJ, congrats on the new guitar! I know you are going to love it. I think you did an excellent job in posting this mutiple guitar review. It seems very objective to me and I have had similar thoughts about some of the models you mentioned. I love the Taylor ?14s body style. I was actually looking for a 614 when I wound up getting an 810 about five years ago. Sometimes I wish I had held out for the 614, but it works fine for me. I like most of the I've tried too Seagulls too.
    Be sure to get to that Taylor Road Show (and sign up for the free giveaways they do at the show-the only time I did not win some strings or something at one was when I did not sign up. Can't win if you don't play thing.) You will find out some things about why that Cocobola wood sounds so good. They talk a lot about technical stuff in these shows, but it is good info (even if some of it goes over my head).
    I particularly like the way the battery is placed in the Taylor AEs so you don't have to mess with reaching into the body. Have fun and enjoy, my friend!!!
    Studying in Jeff Beasley's Sherpa Class, Shred Warehouse! Alumni of Steve Lasner's Bar Room Blues Workshop! Proverbs 17:22 says "A cheerful heart is good medicine..." So I must be overdosing.Eph. 4:31,32 I need to remember this every day.

  10. #10
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    Default

    First here's a MF picture. Maybe this weekend for some natural light pictures.


    I made two quicky recordings. First time ever using the BR for recording. First time recording for the public as well. So here they are complete with warts and all. Demo1 is the pickup output, a little compression and reverb added at recording. Demo2 is just straight from the BR's built in mic. No effects added.

    BL_DEMO1.MP3
    BL_DEMO2.MP3
    Honey, I'm spending money on guitars or women, ... your choice.

    If you take Satan for a ride, pretty soon he'll want to drive.


    Favorite Course - Blues Alchemy
    Working On - Fretboard Epiphanies & Jump Blues

  11. #11

    Default

    Sounds good, new strings? Very bright sounding.

    Second mp3 very much less bright, which I like. Well done, awesome guitar. I"d be jealous except I've conditioned myself to not be so envious of everyone and everyone's cool guitars.
    Last edited by gadlaw; 09-15-2010 at 09:33 PM.
    Enjoy Your Karma, after all you earned it.
    email: gadlaw@gmail.com
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  12. #12

    Default

    I love taylor guitars! I wish my playing could justify one! Congrats!
    My Course Blogs:


  13. #13

    Thumbs up Duh!

    I am dumber than a sled track!
    I was going to ask, but then I thought I understood and I didn't ask AND I didn't understand! Again!

    I totally misunderstood and thought you had bought the used Taylor, but I see some other folks thought the same.
    The Breedlove is an extraordinarily nice guitar. You sure make it sound good in the mp3 files and congratulations for "getting out there!" I know that is kind of scary. I met a lady in DC once and she would have nothing of any brand other than Breedlove. I have not had the chance to play any of them, but all the ones I have heard sound great.
    Congrats again and I know you are going to be a very happy with that one. And by the way, it is a beautiful guitar!
    Studying in Jeff Beasley's Sherpa Class, Shred Warehouse! Alumni of Steve Lasner's Bar Room Blues Workshop! Proverbs 17:22 says "A cheerful heart is good medicine..." So I must be overdosing.Eph. 4:31,32 I need to remember this every day.

  14. #14

    Smile

    Sorry I was bugging you all with those nasty Taylor guitars. Maby we all just started dreaming of that Taylor guitar, so we just read what we wanted to read.

    The recordings sounded great. I think I can hear that you really like the new guitar.

    When plugged in it has a more crispy sound. I think it is just the way it is. I have a Takamine at the same price level, and it is just the same. Some like it and some don't. Easily adjusted with the tone control.
    Larro

    -- If you can dream it, you can do it ! ;)

  15. #15

    Default

    Sweet - I've heard a lot of good feedback about Breedlove guitars.

    Happy New Guitar Day.

  16. #16

    Arrow

    Very Nice…now ya need to write a song for the Sweet Wife…and record it…(dig the Demos)
    Demo 2 with the on-board mic….nice natural sound….
    Thanks for sharing…


    Best Ever !


    Praise Be The Lord, My Rock, Who Trains My Hands For War, and My Fingers For Battle;


    My name is Michael Westen. I used to be a spy.
    Check out the "Triads & Hendrixian Double Stops" Study Group" Put in your 2 Cents

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  17. #17
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    Default

    Nice!!

    I just played those very loud on my M1Active monitors and they sounded REALLY good....if it feels as good as it sounds then you got a bargain


    I'm now going to change the strings on my Yamaha!
    and I might add....it looks a lot like yours. All solid wood but not quite as fancy as your cool lookin Breedlove.
    Last edited by Wolfboy1; 09-16-2010 at 10:57 PM.
    Too soon we grow old, too late we grow wise

    "I once played notes so fast that light emanated from the strings whereupon, I saw God.... who then told me to relax and start playing music."

    "You know, once you've had that guitar up so loud on the stage, where you can lean back and volume will stop you from falling backward, that's a hard drug to kick." David Gilmour

    Truefire Science Officer (dabgonit....where's my blue shirt!)

  18. #18
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    Default

    Ok I just re-read my first post and I can see why the confusion. So let me reword this. So that night I had tried the Taylor 100s & 200s, the ones I could afford. Then I tried the 2 Martins I could afford. At that point I was still drawn to the Breedlove. That's when the used 314 showed up. So Like I said $1700 new down to $1100, and hardly any indication of use.

    I'm thinking there is no conceivable way the Roadshow is not going to have a 300 series anywhere near this price. Might see something around $1400 at absolute best. The wife was with me and approved the over budget purchase. So there was a very strong incentive to want this guitar! And yet I kept going back to the Breedlove and smiling. Now if I'm still smitten with a less expensive guitar in the face of that deal, then there is going to be nothing at the Roadshow (that I can afford) that I'm going to want more. So that was when I cut the deal on the Breedlove. Keep the $40 padded bag, and upgrade to the $90 plastic hardcase for $15 less that the ticket price.

    As far as the audio clips, I recorded them basically with flat EQ to hear the basic sound of the guitar. Recorded right into the MicroBR. The 2nd more natural sounding one if the BR's front mounted mic. And thank you for the compliments. I fubbed a whole bunch of the changes. Finger tips were actually a little sore from 2hrs straight trying out guitars on Tues.

    As far as my playing justifying an upgraded guitar. Not sure there, but I've literally been saving up pocket change for 2 years for this.

    WB1 - I love Yamaha guitars. Look in my avatar, and photo album. That's my 30yr old FG-355. First decent guitar I got back in High School.

    And solid wood is good. Once you hear solid against laminate, you just don't want to go back. I read the specs on the Breedlove today, and I guess the sides are laminated. Not a big deal I was sold on the sound w/o worrying about specs.

    Oh and lastly- Gadlaw, I didn't get to try out any Guilds, but from what I've read, there is no need to be jealous. The '30 is supposed to be real nice itself.

    And I promise I'll get some pics up soon. Want to show off a couple subtle cosmetic details.
    Honey, I'm spending money on guitars or women, ... your choice.

    If you take Satan for a ride, pretty soon he'll want to drive.


    Favorite Course - Blues Alchemy
    Working On - Fretboard Epiphanies & Jump Blues

  19. #19

    Exclamation

    Congrats RJ on the new Acoustic!!

    When I went into Gad's favorite guitar store: blank blank

    I played 3 Breedloves, all of them were not as good as the model you got, maybe the highest was $750-800, but they all sounded great and look sweet.

    So I definitely want a Breedlove to be my next acoustic...

    I've got an Ibanez AEF30TB right now, and it's still plays nice and sounds good, but always sounds better plugged in.. (EDIT): Crap, can someone please show me how to resize images...
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by gadlaw; 09-17-2010 at 09:38 AM.
    *FAVORITE COURSE*



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    A lack of effort will give you a lack of results. (PebberBrown)

    MY GEAR:
    Epiphone 2007 Les Paul Standard
    Ibanez AEF30E Acoustic/Electric
    Fender 2008 MIM Stratocaster
    Epiphone Studio 10s 19watt
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    Yamaha CG172SF
    Digitech RP300A


  20. #20
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    Default

    nice Ibanez jcc if your running MS, Picture Manager in Office Tools is quick and easy to do resizes/compressions or Publisher

    or resize in your photo host

    H
    Last edited by Hutch82; 09-17-2010 at 03:48 AM.
    Worked On: BGSG Course BlogWorking On: 50 R&B Bass Grooves YMK Blog

    Groove long and prosper Tune in to Funk Friday

  21. #21

    Default

    Fixed that picture for you. No need to bang head against wall. Banging heads against walls is my job.
    Enjoy Your Karma, after all you earned it.
    email: gadlaw@gmail.com
    http://www.facebook.com/gadlaw

  22. #22

    Wink

    Thanks Gad, now, how'd you do that?!
    *FAVORITE COURSE*



    *WORKING ON*



    A lack of effort will give you a lack of results. (PebberBrown)

    MY GEAR:
    Epiphone 2007 Les Paul Standard
    Ibanez AEF30E Acoustic/Electric
    Fender 2008 MIM Stratocaster
    Epiphone Studio 10s 19watt
    Line 6 Spider ll 30watt
    Yamaha CG172SF
    Digitech RP300A


  23. #23

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jimiclaptoncarl View Post
    Thanks Gad, now, how'd you do that?!
    I pulled down the image, put it in photoshop and clicked the web and design button. I think Hutch had a couple of suggestions for you there. Don't know if those work or not. Here's one I found in Google. http://www.shrinkpictures.com/
    Last edited by gadlaw; 09-17-2010 at 08:54 PM.
    Enjoy Your Karma, after all you earned it.
    email: gadlaw@gmail.com
    http://www.facebook.com/gadlaw

  24. #24

    Wink Sorry man,,,

    Ah! Sorry Hutch, I missed your post somehow...

    That's what happens when I try and scroll through in a hurry...

    So thanks for the tips, I'm going to try them out on my post in the GAS thread, when I can...
    *FAVORITE COURSE*



    *WORKING ON*



    A lack of effort will give you a lack of results. (PebberBrown)

    MY GEAR:
    Epiphone 2007 Les Paul Standard
    Ibanez AEF30E Acoustic/Electric
    Fender 2008 MIM Stratocaster
    Epiphone Studio 10s 19watt
    Line 6 Spider ll 30watt
    Yamaha CG172SF
    Digitech RP300A


  25. #25
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    Default

    OK finally got around to some snap shots.
    Not my best quality, but couldn't steal my son's SLR today.


    I like the unique headstock, and the stylized script 'B' inlay.


    Very nicely shaped nut.


    Micro dot inlays and the fractured diamond at the 12th fret.


    Abalone rosette, and multi-line white/black edge binding.


    Tortise side binding for the body.


    Attractive solid wood mahogany back.


    Pinless, compensated bridge. Note the plugged hole, on the back centerline.
    This is for the JLD Re-enforced bridge truss. I borrowed a picture from StewMac to show the details

    Honey, I'm spending money on guitars or women, ... your choice.

    If you take Satan for a ride, pretty soon he'll want to drive.


    Favorite Course - Blues Alchemy
    Working On - Fretboard Epiphanies & Jump Blues

  26. #26

    Wink

    Looks very nice RJ!!! If she plays as good as she looks, you got an awesome guitar there! Congrats!!!
    *FAVORITE COURSE*



    *WORKING ON*



    A lack of effort will give you a lack of results. (PebberBrown)

    MY GEAR:
    Epiphone 2007 Les Paul Standard
    Ibanez AEF30E Acoustic/Electric
    Fender 2008 MIM Stratocaster
    Epiphone Studio 10s 19watt
    Line 6 Spider ll 30watt
    Yamaha CG172SF
    Digitech RP300A


  27. #27

    Default

    Cool pics! Congrats again.

  28. #28

    Cool Wow!

    That is one incredibly awesome looking guitar, Sir RJ! Beautiful!
    Studying in Jeff Beasley's Sherpa Class, Shred Warehouse! Alumni of Steve Lasner's Bar Room Blues Workshop! Proverbs 17:22 says "A cheerful heart is good medicine..." So I must be overdosing.Eph. 4:31,32 I need to remember this every day.

  29. #29

    Default

    RJ-good score!! I enjoyed the description of your evaluation process and the knowledge of acoustic guitars you displayed. Great detailed, close-up pics with commentary. Well done! Thanks for sharing with us.

    Dave
    "Life's too short to play with dead strings"

  30. #30

    Default

    Sweet guitar RJ. And it sounds great. I love the sound of wood.

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