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Dilemma: 2016 Hummingbird Standard vs 2016 Hummingbird Vintage


Jesse_Dylan

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Okay, so I was all set, wanting a standard Hummingbird. Never had much interest in the True Vintage models. But, the new 2016 Vintage model, with a nice, vintage cherry sunburst has my number, and I'm curious about that baked top, too.

 

I have a trip planned, and the first leg of the journey is Music Villa in Bozeman. I've got a ton of stuff I had planned to trade toward a 2016 Standard (can't help the price increase! that's life!), but, again, so interested in the Vintage 2016. Unfortunately, while Music Villa does have two of the new Standard 2016, they do not have any of the Vintage 2016.

 

What would you guys do?

 

My plan: Bring all my trade-ins, leave them all there, play the two 2016 Standards. Then, see if they can just order me in a Vintage 2016 and ship it to me. I can then play it and test it against my memories of the two Standards I played there, and I can always ship it back to swap for the Standard I preferred.

 

Or, maybe I'll like one of the two Standards so much I won't even care, but I wonder if I'll spend the rest of my life wondering "what if" about the Vintage 2016.

 

I have to admit, one primary motivation for me is the appearance. I have always wanted a cherry sunburst Hummingbird, and I like that Vintage Cherry Sunburst. The Heritage Cherry Sunburst they use on the Standards does not even look cherry to me--it is outright orange on many models.

 

I swear, I spend more time perseverating about guitars than I do playing them, and that's a lot--I have spent a lot of time playing guitars!

 

7_Body_Left_Front_13984-4d958cc69bf2cf4f3039363de617a26b.jpg

(The 2016 Hummingbird Vintage that I fear will make me "what if" the rest of my life if I get a Standard instead. Note how nice and cherry it looks.)

 

imgrc0070441123.jpg

(another of the new 2016 Vintage versions--obviously they vary a lot, but this one looks amazing too in a different way)

 

17906_Gibson_hummingbird_10223057_a.JPG

(The look I want to avoid--it is a little too "heritage" for me--way too faded and light orange, but I know not all Standards look like this, and I have loved the sound of every one I've played.)

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I have been casually looking for a Hummingbird for a few years. The one True Vintage model I got to try 2 years ago, I should have bought. Beautiful Cherry on it, great sound, but I hesitated and in 2 days it was gone. Play the Standards, but unless one of them really rumbles your soul - I'd hold out for the Vintage. Even better I think might be one with the Thermally Cured Top - saw one in the factory last June, and holy moly, it stole my heart.

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My plan: Bring all my trade-ins, leave them all there, play the two 2016 Standards. Then, see if they can just order me in a Vintage 2016 and ship it to me. I can then play it and test it against my memories of the two Standards I played there, and I can always ship it back to swap for the Standard I preferred.

 

Or, maybe I'll like one of the two Standards so much I won't even care, but I wonder if I'll spend the rest of my life wondering "what if" about the Vintage 2016.

 

I have to admit, one primary motivation for me is the appearance. I have always wanted a cherry sunburst Hummingbird, and I like that Vintage Cherry Sunburst. The Heritage Cherry Sunburst they use on the Standards does not even look cherry to me--it is outright orange on many models.

 

I swear, I spend more time perseverating about guitars than I do playing them, and that's a lot--I have spent a lot of time playing guitars!

 

Delicious pictures - the 2 TV's downright mindblowing. Not hard to see'n'understand you are smitten with the well known, only-one-way-cureable Bird-flu.

 

Your plan is the path to go.

 

Good luck - and do report

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Yeah, as Em7 said, the burst on the Vintage model is amazing, really looks like the burst from a vintage 60's model. And the terrified top would be interesting to hear.

 

Here's an idea to get best of both worlds, why dont you buy a used Hummingbird True Vintage, similar build and a few years play would make it sound played in, while much easier on the wallet ..

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We all have certain things that push our internal buttons.

 

Personally, the light burst does it for me. It's more like the Royal Tan from early Epi Casinos. Dark sunbursts rarely get me excited, whereas all blonde guitars are a favorite.

 

I also generally do not care for square-shouldered dreads (while owning two - a Martin & a Guild), and large flowery pickguards will occasionally register a passing yawn.

 

Still, if you gave me one of those Birds, I'd take it..... and swap it out for another J-185 !!!

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Here's an idea to get best of both worlds, why dont you buy a used Hummingbird True Vintage, similar build and a few years play would make it sound played in, while much easier on the wallet ..

 

I think this is an excellent alternative. Buying a used True Vintage in mint condition is what I would personally do. I'm not a fan of the thermally cured look.

 

Lars

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It's quite a dilemma! I think all I can do is go in good faith, play what's there, and if neither captures me or I worry I'll "always wonder," see if they can order me in a 2016 Vintage and ship it to me (they'd have to ship it to me if I bought one there anyway--it would really get "thermally cured" coming on the rest of the 10-day trip!).

 

Here's an idea to get best of both worlds, why dont you buy a used Hummingbird True Vintage, similar build and a few years play would make it sound played in, while much easier on the wallet ..

 

I'm doing all my trade-ins at Music Villa, so I'll be limited by what they have in stock on the one day that I'm there. Ah, the troubles of not having anything locally! I have just bought everything else off the internet, without having played it first, but in this case, I can't buy unless I can do trade-ins. (Admittedly I could sell them myself, but I hate that kind of stuff, listing things, and hate packing/shipping guitars even more.)

 

I've actually never played a TV. I've heard them on the internet and never thought I liked them better than the Modern Classics. However, the 2016 Vintage might be a new thing entirely, and I guess the combination of the thermal curing and the vintage cherry really give it a look that I love. But maybe if I could play a Vintage 2016, I'd decide I don't necessarily like it better than a 2016 Standard. I wish they could just have both in stock for me!

 

I love the Vintage. It is on my list!

What are you trading in?

 

Hey Jeremy! I have a giant list of trade-ins. At the top is a Martin 00-18V that is a real keeper (which makes it sad that I'm not keeping it). Other than that, I have a lot of miscellaneous items: 1980s mahogany/spruce Guild, 1970s all-mahogany Guild classical, Chinese Guild GAD-JF48, Chinese Guild GAD-M20, Martin OXK Uke, Crate All Tube Club 60 amp (heavier than planet earth itself), Traveler MK II guitar, Yamaha 6-string uke, empty guitar case, AKG C1000S microphone (might keep that), handmade Nehemiah Covey copy of SJ-200 (not sure if they can give me a good price on that), Fender Toronado electric, Guild DCE-1... And I may have even left a few things out! I have no idea what it will all add up to. I hope they are willing to discount lower than the MAP.

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Sal,

 

Your cherry finish has a much more pronounced burst than the two at the top of the thread. IMHO, I like your burst better, because the burst is more pronounced and doesn't look as dark in the videos I've seen. (Capturing a Bird's true color scheme seems to be near impossible, since many Bird owners here have taken multiple shots of their guitars and their Birds often look very different picture to picture.)

 

Jesse, I think most of us who love Birds have our own mental picture of what ours should look like. Yes, it's supposed to be about the sound, but Gibson bursts are dramatic and add to the bonding experience, for sure. And the Bird is among the most visually stunning, so you want to get it just right. I think you've been given very good advice here, but in the end YOU WILL KNOW when you've found the right guitar for you and that's something that only you can decide. We can't wait to see what you come back with.

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Well, off I go tomorrow. I am still hoping they'll get a Hummingbird Vintage 2016 in for when I arrive Wednesday. :) I mean, they are in the same town as the factory, and they're a premeire Gibson dealer, right?? :)

 

I suppose my worries are:

 

1) I am blown away by one of the standards but then "what if" about the Vintage

2) I am happy with the standards but decide to just leave my trades and money and order a Vintage, but then I finally get the Vintage and think instead about one of the Standards that blew me away and think "I actually liked the Standard better! Oh no!"

 

If I could just A/B, then I'd know for sure...

 

It's funny, because I was not really interested in the True Vintage models. I had not played one, but I'd really liked the Standards I'd played, and listening to recordings, I preferred the sound of the Standard. But I haven't played (or even heard!) a 2016 Vintage, and I'm smitten by the look and interested in the baked top.

 

Well, nothing I can do but enjoy the two Standards they have and go from there! I will definitely be keeping you folks updated, though. I think I've started more Hummingbird threads on this forum in the last year than have ever been on here previously.

 

I will have to try to avoid playing a Jackson Browne or any non-Hummingbird. That would only complicate matters, unless I didn't like them (which I find unlikely--the Jackson Brownes are super cool).

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I wouldn't dismiss purchasing a used True Vintage model so easily, especially if you are looking to save some $$$$ compared to purchasing a 2016 Vintage or even a new Modern Classic. However, I am biased :)

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I wouldn't dismiss purchasing a used True Vintage model so easily, especially if you are looking to save some $$$$ compared to purchasing a 2016 Vintage or even a new Modern Classic. However, I am biased :)

 

They don't have any used Hummingbirds, TV or otherwise, in stock. Otherwise I'd think about it, but I like the lifetime warranty, too! At the moment, they only have two 2016 standards, and I'm hoping a miracle will occur and they'll get a 2016 Vintage as well.

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Jesse,

 

From all you've told us, I'd say you'll likely always wonder about the one that got away. However, I truly believe that you should follow your heart and all that you've told us and buy the Hummingbird Standard that has always impressed you more than the fancier versions. Sure, the new 2016s might be amazing, but a man has to make and live with his decision sometime and even should another model blow you away, it will likely only be because it is different not better than the one you choose. You've long had a love affair with the Standards. Don't let a higher price tag convince you another guitar is better. The nature of GAS says you and me and most people on this board will continue to wonder about all the other guitars out there. Buying one guitar will never end those cravings. You must accept this. And buy the guitar you love knowing this.

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You will know it full well if one of the standard Birds is "it." And you wont care a damn about the specs if that's the case.

 

I played the one I bought over three visits, months apart, each time asking myself why it hadn't sold. It was so good - I couldnt have cared less if it said Chibson on the headstock; I knew I wanted it. And my Gibson dealer had plenty of "wow" inventory... but none spoke to me as this one did.

 

I finally just did the deed.

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Heading out the door!

 

Yeah, I hope that's the case, that I'll just know. I think it will have a lot to do with the sound (duh)--thing is, I have liked the way every Hummingbird I've played sounded, and I like the way they've all looked. I think I'd be happy with any of them that I've tried. However, none of them were three little bears "just right" in all departments. I'll just have to look at, play, hear and feel the two that are there, and if I am not totally blown away, I might pull the wild card and opt for a 2016 Vintage I won't be able to play first. But, if I decide I liked one of the Standards better (relying on memory--dangerous!), I'm sure Music Villa will let me send it back to swap for the standard.

 

Well, I will keep you guys updated. Today is a traveling day, and I'll be arriving in Bozeman sometime early afternoon tomorrow (Wed). Exciting!

 

I have 12 guitar- or guitar-shaped objects. The Jeep is full as can be. There are 9 actual guitars, total, two ukuleles, two empty cases and an empty gig bag. And a djembe, an M-box, a C1000S microphone, an Alesis drum machine, an amp (that apparently retailed for $400 in 2003), a stomp pedal... And I may have actually forgotten an item or two!

 

I only hope we can get through all the trades and make a deal, because I still have to drive from Bozeman to Gardiner, MT tomorrow after concluding all the guitar business! I guess we'll have to, because they close at 6. :P

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Yeah I hope they're not annoyed! I'm hoping it's more than enough for a Hummingbird.

 

You mean you haven't called them to ask if they would consider taking 9 guitars in trade for a brand new Gibson?

If they have anyone reading this forum, they're going to know they have you by the short hairs!

Even more so, now they know you are arriving in the early afternoon and have to conclude your business by 6pm. Good Luck.

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You mean you haven't called them to ask if they would consider taking 9 guitars in trade for a brand new Gibson?

If they have anyone reading this forum, they're going to know they have you by the short hairs!

Even more so, now they know you are arriving in the early afternoon and have to conclude your business by 6pm. Good Luck.

 

Well, they are not the greatest old 9 guitars. They are all pretty quirky except for the Martin. They should be worth something though! I'm not sure if you meant I was trying to give them too much or too little! :)

 

I have been in contact with them via e-mail on and off about it for a year or so (!), but it is still pretty up in the air. Until tomorrow anyway, hopefully!

 

By the way, it sounds Paul spent today attempting to secure a 2016 Hummingbird Vintage for me so I could A/B it with the two Standards tomorrow. I hope he was successful!

 

image.jpg1.jpg

 

Made it from Minot, ND to Miles City, MT, but I had to unload it all and bring it into the hotel room, and tomorrow morning load it all back up. Girlfriend thinks I'm nuts. It was 90 degrees even outside of the car though, so I can't imagine what it would have been inside. And to make matters worse, the back door on the Jeep wouldn't open once we got to the hotel! Hope it opens in the morning. Unloading through the doors/window was okay, but loading it back up and getting all the bungie cords back on is going to be hard if the door won't open.

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Jesse, this sounds like an odyssey that deserves to become a book, or at least a song. Good luck hunting - and by the way, I played both of those H'bird Standards about a month ago and they were both terrific. If MV would not have had the one-off J-35 that I ended up buying for my son, one of them may have followed me home. But acquiring 2 guitars in one month probably would've resulted in a swift and unpredictable response on the home front. Your girlfriend is coming with you on this sojourn willingly? Marry that girl. [thumbup]

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This is gettin' exciting -

 

Wondered if the girl is with you too - carrying guitar-shaped objects and trying to grasp differences between Standard, True Vintage and torrefried 2016 Birds when you sleep-talk.

 

Catchy scenes - great road-movie.

 

Best Wishes

 

 

 

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