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Desolationrow

all hog guitars

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I too have the Martin 00015m and I lover it simply because of its different sound and it is also very comfortable to play as well, underrated guitar in my opinion especially for the money, I paid 1250.00 for mine. I do not have the 40th anny edition.

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I had a 00-15 and really liked the tone of it a lot but could not get on wit the 1 11/16 nut width and skinny neck profile, sold it my old singer in the end. I do miss that guitar quite a bit, it was special.

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Interesting to hear people's take on hog tops here.

 

My personal take is they have a certain growl, and punch and a focus particularly in the mids and treble. NOT a "mellow" or subdued or "warm" thing compared to spruce.

 

To me, the older Martins, in particular 40's or 30's parlor hog tops (when they can be found to play), sound NOTHING like the wet-noodle tone of the -15 series. Completely different tonal category.

 

Although, that was maybe 10 years ago. I don't know what they are making now sounds like. I do remember trying a LOT of them back then when I was looking for a hog top guitar, looking for one with (what I thought) was the "proper" hog top tonality, and being surprised that none of the -15's had it, even though the guitars were actual Martins and built well with what seemed proper spec.

 

I found and bought a Larivee OM-03 in all hog, which although doesn't really sound like a Martin, it does do the hog top thingy the "originals" do. Enough to quit looking for an older Martin for sale, which were priced reasonably at the time.

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I'm all for everyone trying and buying more guitars. The worst that happens is you never bond with the guitar in question and you sell at a loss. But more likely you adjust to the new guitar and learn another way of approaching the instrument. Every instrument will change how you sing -- either very subtly or quite pronounced. Go with it.

 

I've got a 00-15M Martin and it's nice. I still miss my mid-'70s Guild D25M but the neck reset would've cost me half what the guitar was worth and I decided to try something new. At some point, I'll likely end up with another one. Admittedly, it was a bit boomy, but the bass actually curled a tad, which made it a very cool bass sound. A bit harder to record, but many full body guitars are harder to record and work best when playing in an acoustic group and you want to shut everyone else up.

 

Rule #1: Have Fun!

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Buying an all-mahogany guitar recently, I have done quite a bit of research.

 

Martin's current 15 series uses a "simple dovetail" (i.e. a dovetail done by CNC). Previously, they used their "mortise and tenon" neck joint, and of course the original 15s were true Dovetail neck joints. The switch was 2012 or so. Some people think it made a big difference. Other people think it doesn't matter. Taylor and Collings use bolt-on necks. I think it matters, but it's just a different sound, not better or worse. And of course, any all-mahogany guitar coming out of Gibson Montana is going to be Dovetail as well.

 

Some Martin 15s used sapele, but their current ones ("15M") use honduran mahogany, as did the original 15s.

 

The modern 15s do not have scalloped braces and use some kind of modified a-frame bracing that they developed along with the original M&T neck joint. The originals would have used the standard X (scalloped, I'd imagine--I think everything was scalloped until after WWII).

 

So, there is a big difference between 15s from the 1930s, from the 1990s-2000s, and the 2010s 15s.

 

What's interesting about the Guild D-20 is that it uses genuine mahogany, has a genuine Dovetail neck joint, uses scalloped X-bracing (redesigned by Ren based on vintage Guilds), and still manages to have a minimum advertised price lower than the Martins. And, while Guild USA's output is currently so low, Ren Ferguson is probably keeping an eye on each one if not doing some of the work himself! Nice time to buy a Guild. Martin has some serious competition now for the best value in USA-made acoustic guitars (although I think Gibson's J-15 really ups the game in the same price category as the Martins, and the Guild comes in a few hundred less than either at street price).

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The warm and woody was tolerable, but the muffled bass and lack of ring from the treble strings wasn't.

 

I gave my D-15m to my son in law a few years ago - he loves it. I didn't feel the bass was especially muffled. But I do agree about the treble strings, nothing like my Gibsons. This really didn't work well for the style of fingerpicked blues I play, where the top strings are like a "voice". Notes on these strings sing out clearly on my Gibsons. I thought the D-15M produced beautiful, full chords with that Martin sound though, so it all depends on what you are looking for.

 

I disliked the way the neck was finished, the edges seemed very sharp and uncomfortable compared to the rounded edges on my Gibsons. The build was solid but it felt a little cheap. I suppose that is to be expected when comparing it to a Gibson that costs twice as much though. ;)

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It suddenly occurred to me that I have a bunch of demos (16 it turns out) that relate to this topic and I can easily create a vimeo group that contains them. The guitars involved are five Martins (25 0-18K, 33 0-17, 34 0-17, 43 00-17, and 55 00-17) and one Gibson (42 LG-1). The demos are of the individual guitars and comparisons with other guitars. These videos are one of the things I use when trying to inform myself on tone.

 

Mahogany top guitar demos.

 

Best,

 

-Tom

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It suddenly occurred to me that I have a bunch of demos (16 it turns out) that relate to this topic and I can easily create a vimeo group that contains them. The guitars involved are five Martins (25 0-18K, 33 0-17, 34 0-17, 43 00-17, and 55 00-17) and one Gibson (42 LG-1). The demos are of the individual guitars and comparisons with other guitars. These videos are one of the things I use when trying to inform myself on tone.

 

Mahogany top guitar demos.

 

Best,

 

-Tom

Wow, that 1934 0-17 with the non-original parts sounds amazing. At first strum I thought... gee... that sounds different.

 

Just to confuse matters further, I'd like to submit a demo of the Guild D-20. I think it really contrasts with the Martin D-15M. I was annoyed at first because I want to hear a dreadnought strummed, and so why the heck is someone fingerpicking it for a demo? But then you listen, and you hear how great the trebles sound under the woody bass, and you realize what a versatile guitar it must be to keep the rounded treble and fingerpick so well in addition to presumably being as good a chord-chunker as the D-15M is.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wj1iMxaBPh4

 

Could be partly because the D-20 is made for (and comes with) light strings, which is probably all it needs, much like an all-mahogany J-45. The D-15M is made for mediums, different neck joint, different bracing, etc etc...

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... And, while Guild USA's output is currently so low, Ren Ferguson is probably keeping an eye on each one if not doing some of the work himself! Nice time to buy a Guild. Martin has some serious competition now for the best value in USA-made acoustic guitars (although I think Gibson's J-15 really ups the game in the same price category as the Martins, and the Guild comes in a few hundred less than either at street price).

 

I had a 2014 (?) Ren-designed Guild Orpheum 12 fret slope shoulder Dread. Adi top and Mahogany B&S. Reportedly his homage to Smeck. It was a great guitar, but I couldn't get used to the neck, which was fat and wide.

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I always like the little All mahogany (Guild?) that Lightnin' plays in this clip - I think they have a reissue of the model out now:

 

 

 

 

 

 

BluesKing777.

 

Great video that I've never seen! Before I saw the headstock, I was going to say, isn't that a Martin? But I don't think it's a Martin, and I'm pretty sure it's not a Guild either. Sounds like my sapele Martin D Jr though. Guess it is a lesser-known brand.

 

I don't think I'll ever be able to play like Lightnin', as long as I live.

 

Guild does have a USA-made re-issue of the M-20, by the way, and the D-20 is the dreadnought-sized version (which I have now and really like). I'm sure the M-20 is excellent. Even if that's not a Guild M-20 in the video (I don't think it is), just wanted to say. :)

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