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davidl

Epi Masterbuilt acoustics

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Does anyone have experience with the Masterbuilt series? If so, what are your thoughts.

My father in law has asked me to help him find an acoustic guitar for him in the $500-$700 Canadian range. I have no experience in this price range but really want him to have the best bang for his buck.

He mentioned a low end Martin but I'm not so sure. I think he can do better for the money.

Any recommendations?

Thanks

Dave

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Does anyone have experience with the Masterbuilt series? If so, what are your thoughts.

My father in law has asked me to help him find an acoustic guitar for him in the $500-$700 Canadian range. I have no experience in this price range but really want him to have the best bang for his buck.

He mentioned a low end Martin but I'm not so sure. I think he can do better for the money.

Any recommendations?

Thanks

Dave

You will do much better with a Masterbilt than with a Martin--a new one, anyway--in that price range. Low end Martins are not very well made, and of a kind of pressed-wood. The unvarnished necks feel very rough, too. The Epi M'bilt will be all solid wood and well put together. Problem right now is that Epiphone has pulled all the Masterbilt models save two or three, I believe. Not as much choice as when I got mine, an AJ500RC 12-fret, now discontinued. There is, though, a chance you can find a decent (at least solid-top) used Martin in the high end of that price range.

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Hi. I own three Masterbilts and they are all top notch sounding and playing...all solid woods as stated above..bone nut and saddles also. I have a Masterbilt DR-500mce..solid mahogany, sitka top in burst color and it is excellent for the price, can't imagine doing better for a new solid wood, and it comes with excellent pick up installed. You can find out about it here and read its customer reviews at musicians friend. It' costs $599 new and it plays like a $2000 plus guitar. Good luck! Masterbilt guitars have a stellar reputation! http://www.musicians...c-guitar/423559 also see them at Sweetwater http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/EMECVSNH3/

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Agree 100% with guitarlight,although I would have to add that the EL-00 pro has been getting RAVE reviews as well as the "inspired by Texan". Those two instruments seem to be an even greater "bang-for-your-buck for someone who is looking for a reasonably priced but quality instrument, but since your initial question was about the Masterbilt we'll leave it at that. I have two: a DR500MCE and an AJ500R and if I ever find a DR500P on ebay, I will pull the trigger immediately on it!

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I bought a Masterbilt DR-500mce about 6 mths ago. Got it on sale at Musicians Friend for $529 US when the Loonie was at par with the US buck. With the Cdn $ having dropped in value lately you may want to watch for it on sale. Love the tone of this guitar. Also really like the Shadow stereo preamp system. I use it on a Roland AC40 stereo amp as well as a Vox electric amp and love the sounds I get from this guitar. Tried a lot of more expensive guitars but kept coming back to the Masterbilt. Don't think you can get better sound for the price.

 

 

benzowner

 

Epi Masterbilt DR-500mce

Epi Sheraton II

Norman B20

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If you're set on a Masterbilt I'd recommend looking for one of the AJ models, they seem to sound the best of the ones I've tried. There seems to be a lot of all solid wood acoustics close to that price range available right now so it shouldn't be hard to find the right one for your budget.

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If you're set on a Masterbilt I'd recommend looking for one of the AJ models, they seem to sound the best of the ones I've tried. There seems to be a lot of all solid wood acoustics close to that price range available right now so it shouldn't be hard to find the right one for your budget.

 

Unfortunately that line is discontinued unless you find a used one in mint shape. I have the dr500mce and it is stellar, I would go as far as saying its far better than most for volume and tone. Do some research even the hummingbird pro is getting good reviews. Can't go wrong with the dr500 though the reason Gibson says don't make those is because they meet many gibsons now in quality and sound. Really wish the AJ Masterbuilt would come back apparently it was better than the dr.

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Master builts have a good reputation, but I just bought an EL-00 pro, and love it! You can add some extras, and add the hard shell case and still be in your budget easily. I put Martin SP strings on it right away and really improved the sound. I will special order Tusque nut and bridge to boost it a bit. This is a keeper! Worth looking at. Musicians friend is selling a bunch of thesse lately. Word is getting out.

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I am a big fan of the AJ500s. We have an R and an M. The M took a long time to find used, but is was patient. I like it better than the rosewood...

 

I would stay clear of the "used" stamps. Been there... Wait it out for a great condition regular second hand one.

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I have an AJ500me - hog and AE. Love it.

 

Just got an EL00 pro. Haven't had a chance to restring and mess with it, but the messing with it at the store both electric and pure acoustic felt pretty good regardless a somewhat unfamiliar shape.

 

I'd not care to get one of the Martin fiberboard guitars that are in the same price range as high-end Epis. The possible exception might be for a 12-string AE, but then strength of construction is that much more important than "pure acoustic tone" on a six string regardless of quality woods or whatever.

 

Frankly I'm not all that much into the lower end Martins given that they're imports made of what amounts to a high quality fiberboard. I'm sure that arguments may be made whether an Epi with a solid top and laminated body is better than a Martin with a solid top and fiberboard body. I'll take the Epi, myself. In fact, just got an Epi EL00 pro AE that fits the solid top laminated body description.

 

I've only owned one rosewood body guitar. I prefer hog.

 

m

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I am a big fan of the AJ500s. We have an R and an M. The M took a long time to find used, but is was patient. I like it better than the rosewood...

 

I would stay clear of the "used" stamps. Been there... Wait it out for a great condition regular second hand one.

 

I don't know what it is but the mahogany AJ500s had a really nice sound, to me a significant step up over the rest of the Masterbilts. I had one but didn't have the room for it so my brother bought it, my father bought his at the same time and that thing sounds great. It's woody but not in the same way as the Gibsons I have, just really nice in it's own way... I'd say almost more modern like a tighter bass. That said the DR masterbilts I've tried did nothing for me, they weren't as responsive as the AJs. It could be those awful strings they put on those Epiphones, so dead you'd swear they weren't trying to sell the guitar.

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I don't know what it is but the mahogany AJ500s had a really nice sound, to me a significant step up over the rest of the Masterbilts. I had one but didn't have the room for it so my brother bought it, my father bought his at the same time and that thing sounds great. It's woody but not in the same way as the Gibsons I have, just really nice in it's own way... I'd say almost more modern like a tighter bass. That said the DR masterbilts I've tried did nothing for me, they weren't as responsive as the AJs. It could be those awful strings they put on those Epiphones, so dead you'd swear they weren't trying to sell the guitar.

 

I find that most in store guitars have crap strings on them, except the really over priced ones that is, A good set of strings and my DR really sings.

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As for strings on guitars from the factory...

 

IMHO even on a high four-figure guitar they should be replaced - ideally on a better instrument before a purchase. That's regularly done in purchases of 5-figure guitars.

 

The factory strings IMHO are there to help stabilize the neck during a guitar's first period of life. They're not really there for somebody to play for a cupla years after purchase. Sheesh.

 

I've never had "store" strings on a guitar more than an hour after I had the time to properly change strings and wring the instrument out a bit with the new strings.

 

m

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I have an AJ 500r and the Ukulele; both of which are wonderful instruments! I had a DR 500ra at one point but I just didn't bond with it. I also have a few Martins and my Masterbilt is not embarrased sonically by them. These are very tough to beat and I'm glad I was able to get a few while they were around! At that price find a Masterbilt.

 

20140223_140537_6_bestshot_zpssvcbogh2.jpg

 

20140224_111748_6_bestshot_zpsp4r86od8.jpg

 

 

20140224_111831_5_bestshot_zpscbjrexwf.jpg

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I have an AJ 500r and the Ukulele; both of which are wonderful instruments! I had a DR 500ra at one point but I just didn't bond with it. I also have a few Martins and my Masterbilt is not embarrased sonically by them. These are very tough to beat and I'm glad I was able to get a few while they were around! At that price find a Masterbilt.

 

20140223_140537_6_bestshot_zpssvcbogh2.jpg

 

20140224_111748_6_bestshot_zpsp4r86od8.jpg

 

 

20140224_111831_5_bestshot_zpscbjrexwf.jpg

 

Now I think it looks better than the martins. Very Nice

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+1 for Epi Masterbilt. [thumbup]

 

I actually turn to mine more than my Gibson. Great feel, great sound. Epi should never have discontinued that line. With some searching you may find a gently used one or a NOS. Never really liked the Martins (good strings though). Martins, like Taylors and Gibsons, are simply too expensive and require too much babysitting because of the dollar investment IMHO.

 

Good luck.

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+1 for Epi Masterbilt. [thumbup]

 

I actually turn to mine more than my Gibson. Great feel, great sound. Epi should never have discontinued that line. With some searching you may find a gently used one or a NOS. Never really liked the Martins (good strings though). Martins, like Taylors and Gibsons, are simply too expensive and require too much babysitting because of the dollar investment IMHO.

 

Good luck.

 

I agree nothing like the frown when those expensive over priced guitars get put away because the masterbuilt has more volume, tone never see me drool over a martin or a Gibson badge again haven't decided on the next epi thou hopefully a new masterbuilt model soon.

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Does anyone have experience with the Masterbuilt series? If so, what are your thoughts.

My father in law has asked me to help him find an acoustic guitar for him in the $500-$700 Canadian range. I have no experience in this price range but really want him to have the best bang for his buck.

He mentioned a low end Martin but I'm not so sure. I think he can do better for the money.

Any recommendations?

Thanks

Dave

I have to say I LOVE the Masterbuilt,s I bought a refurbished DR500MCCE stamped as used but New with hardshell case for 480.00 I was so impressed that I just bought a New EF500cce and I LOVE them Both they are EXCELLENT !!! Enuf Said !!!

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I have to say I LOVE the Masterbuilt,s I bought a refurbished DR500MCCE stamped as used but New with hardshell case for 480.00 I was so impressed that I just bought a New EF500cce and I LOVE them Both they are EXCELLENT !!! Enuf Said !!!

 

Which do you prefer jessie

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