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sbpark

Sold my J45...now what?

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Yep, never thought I'd do it, but I did. Had the J45 for couple years and guess I never really fully bonded with it. Had a love/hate relationship with that guitar. Will admit I was a bit "green" when it came to nicer acoustics at the time I bought it, only ever owning a Yamaha FG-441S for 19 years before that as my only acoustic guitar, always being an electric player. Since then have had many nice acoustics come and go, and in the last few years I have pretty much only been playing acoustic, sold off all my electric guitars and amps, except for a Telecaster and an old Silverface Deluxe Reverb. These days I only play electric when I "have to" as part of the duo I am in, usually for slide or textural guitar stuff with light OD and Tremolo, etc. (we do a killer cover of Jason Isbell's "cover Me Up", that's fun to play slide on, btw!)

 

Back to the J45...I guess I never really bonded with it despite desperately wanting to. It had a great, thunderous low end, but the rest of the range on that particular guitar always sounded dead and flat to me, sometimes even thin and harsh. I had been though the gamut with every string set known to man, in every alloy and gauge! Had since played other J45 Standards that were more open and balanced and pleasing (to my) ear. Posted it for sale locally and sold it in a few days. Not to fear though, there is still a Gibson in the camp. I have a 2012 AJ that's killer. It's not a guitar I play everyday, and it's not the best for solo accompaniment given it's sheer power and tendency to be the center of attention sonically and drowns out my voice if not careful, but it's awesome and can be tamed with a nylon pick to some degree. It actually shines when I'm playing in the duo since I do more of a lead role with lots of embellishments, lead lines, etc. Perfect for that. My other guitars are an Martin HD28 and a Martin 000-15M. For the times when it's just me singing and playing solo the 000-15M has become the go-to guitar. Pairs wonderfully with vocals, isn't overpowering and is a very sweet sounding, dynamic guitar with a great tone, that contrary to popular belief is also a great strummer.

 

The fact that I seem to be preferring the 000-15M led me to thinking...I wonder what one of the sunburst limited run all-mahogany J45's would sound like. Unfortunately I can't find any locally to play, but the clips I've listened to on YouTube with some nice AKG headphones sound incredible. Very warm, fairly complex and rich, great for strumming and hybrid picking, etc., which is pretty much my style. They're also on sale through a few retailers online now, just none available to try locally. Wondering if this would be a great match for the acoustic singer/songwriter. I'm heavily influenced by Jay Farrar, Jeff Tweedy, Gary Louris, Jason Isbell, etc.

 

Anyone out there ever get their hands on one of these all-mahogany J45's? Thoughts, impressions, etc., or do you have any other suggestions on a good current Gibson that's easily available that might work? Obviously it's best to get out there and play a bunch, but since this is a Gibson forum, I thought it might also be interesting to start a discussion. Thanks in advance!

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The J-45 rosewood that I own is still my favorite, it has a very warm sound.

 

Hope to be able to play the J-45 all mahogany though also, I'm curious how it sounds.

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I've played many J45's over the years, some sounded great, some not so much.

 

The J15 is a great guitar for the money and sounds perfect for vocal accompaniment. Again though, they all sound different so play as many as you can.

 

I've been looking at Martins myself to add to the camp and the one that catches my eye is the 000-15M actually. Played one and was very taken with it.

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carefull when talking yourself in and out of things like this, costly and possibly follie, just my opinion....if you go for a martin and dont get a style 18 or up you will get rid of it soon enough as well....

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carefull when talking yourself in and out of things like this, costly and possibly follie, just my opinion....if you go for a martin and dont get a style 18 or up you will get rid of it soon enough as well....

 

Why you say that?

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i say that because in my OPINION martins under the style 18 are built with an eye to cost savings, nice for the price, but folks who tend to "go thru " guitars can sometimes not be happy with anything but standard built guitars, they are better, as to selling a j 45 for a 15, Id think the 45 is a better guitar. remember-forums are platforms for opinions and I only have 1, my own...

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The J-45 rosewood that I own is still my favorite, it has a very warm sound.

 

Hope to be able to play the J-45 all mahogany though also, I'm curious how it sounds.

 

Since I already have an AJ and a D-28 I pretty much have the the rosewood thing covered. Kind of miss a short scale slope shoulder in the lineup!

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I've played many J45's over the years, some sounded great, some not so much.

 

The J15 is a great guitar for the money and sounds perfect for vocal accompaniment. Again though, they all sound different so play as many as you can.

 

I've been looking at Martins myself to add to the camp and the one that catches my eye is the 000-15M actually. Played one and was very taken with it.

 

I LOVE my 000-15M. Can't recommend that little guitar enough. I think even Gibson people would like that guitar if they got their hands on a nice one. The first 000-15M I had was a little underwhelming, but the one i have now is a keeper.

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carefull when talking yourself in and out of things like this, costly and possibly follie, just my opinion....if you go for a martin and dont get a style 18 or up you will get rid of it soon enough as well....

 

Who said I was going for a Marttin? I already have 2 Martins and one Gibson and want another Gibson. And as far as it being costly, I sold my J45 for $300 less than what I paid for it brand new and played it for a few years. Seems like a good deal to me considering I didn't bond with the guitar, moved on and didn't lose my shirt.

 

And since you apparently didn't ready my entire post initially, I already own a 000-15M and have no intentions of getting rid of it. It's an amazing guitar. Not sure where the "style 18 or higher or you'll get rid of it" comment is coming from.

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i say that because in my OPINION martins under the style 18 are built with an eye to cost savings, nice for the price, but folks who tend to "go thru " guitars can sometimes not be happy with anything but standard built guitars, they are better, as to selling a j 45 for a 15, Id think the 45 is a better guitar. remember-forums are platforms for opinions and I only have 1, my own...

 

You're making some VERY broad generalizations, and yes you're entitled to your own opinion that's for sure. But discounting anything less than an 18 series as being sub par is a bit ignorant. Even Chris Martin IV has been quoted as saying the 15 series are probably their best bang for the buck. These are not inferior guitars in any regard. There may be duds in the bunch just like any other acoustic guitar model, but I don't think they're junk and are totally world class instruments, and a killer value. Also, saying that a J45 is a "better" guitar than a J15 is a bit ignorant as well. It's all about sound. The J45 I had never really sounded that great to my ear after playing it for a few years and hearing other J45's I determined I could do better, so I sold it. And I've played J15's that sounded better than my particular J45. You can't make a blanket statement like that and say one model is better than another, they're just different.

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gotta say that calling someone who has an opinion different than yours ignorant is ignorant. cf martin you quoted as saying- good bang for the buck-, not better than 18 and up, Gibson selling a guitar for less than another model usually means a little less quality, not saying bad or unworthy, just not quite as good, when the op asks in header- sold my 45 now what, and I said "if" you go for a martin etc. have a nice nite...and again,a j 45 or style 18 up martins, are better than j15s or 00015ms IN FACT- CHEERS

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gotta say that calling someone who has an opinion different than yours ignorant is ignorant. cf martin you quoted as saying- good bang for the buck-, not better than 18 and up, Gibson selling a guitar for less than another model usually means a little less quality, not saying bad or unworthy, just not quite as good, when the op asks in header- sold my 45 now what, and I said "if" you go for a martin etc. have a nice nite...and again,a j 45 or style 18 up martins, are better than j15s or 00015ms IN FACT- CHEERS

 

Better in what way? I'll say it again, it's an ignorant statement to say just because a guitar costs more it's automatically better. Also, a guitar can cost more simply because it has more ornamentation/bling/appointments, etc. Take for example a J45 and a Southern Jumbo. Identical guitars as far as materials/woods used, identical branding, etc. The Southern Jumbo costs more only because of cosmetics. Under the hood they are identical, the same guitar, but by your rationale the Southern Jumbo MUST simply because it costs more be better, right? Wrong.

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the sj is better because of ornamentation, the ornamentation IMPROVES the guitar...makes it nicer dont you think ? hierarchy....what is it all about ? cheers J

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I wouldn't worry about it sbpark, some people just like to argue about it for the sake of arguing.

 

You can see what guitars I own in my profile and I would put J15 up against any of them and ANY J45 any day. It's really that good. The craftsmanship is superb and it sounds wonderful and has really opened out after multiple gigging (average 3 hour gigs, solo acoustic / singer so it gets played hard).

 

As for the Martin, I'm with you. I've played the 000-15M and really liked it. The particular store is a acoustic guitar specialist, vintage and new. He only sells North American made instruments. This guy really knows his stuff. Had a pre-war Martin in at one point, priced at $75,000. Let me play it no problem..Oh and the point of that intro..his best selling 'new' guitar the Martin 000-15M!

 

Just because it's cheaper doesn't always make it inferior.

 

My first Gibson Acoustic was the SJ. I was actually going for a J45. Tried both and I liked the sound of the SJ better. As you say they are all but identical apart from the bling, but that particular J45 sounded dull compared to the SJ. Yes I paid more for it but the sound had nothing to do with the binding or fret inlays.

 

Guitars to vary from one to another though for identical, acoustics and electrics. Stands to reason it's made of natural materials. I'm lucky that 90 minutes drive is a guitar 'Superstore'. They have 3 of the 000-15M's in at the moment. I'm hoping to get there soon to try them.

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I wouldn't worry about it sbpark, some people just like to argue about it for the sake of arguing.

 

You can see what guitars I own in my profile and I would put J15 up against any of them and ANY J45 any day. It's really that good. The craftsmanship is superb and it sounds wonderful and has really opened out after multiple gigging (average 3 hour gigs, solo acoustic / singer so it gets played hard).

 

As for the Martin, I'm with you. I've played the 000-15M and really liked it. The particular store is a acoustic guitar specialist, vintage and new. He only sells North American made instruments. This guy really knows his stuff. Had a pre-war Martin in at one point, priced at $75,000. Let me play it no problem..Oh and the point of that intro..his best selling 'new' guitar the Martin 000-15M!

 

Just because it's cheaper doesn't always make it inferior.

 

My first Gibson Acoustic was the SJ. I was actually going for a J45. Tried both and I liked the sound of the SJ better. As you say they are all but identical apart from the bling, but that particular J45 sounded dull compared to the SJ. Yes I paid more for it but the sound had nothing to do with the binding or fret inlays.

 

Guitars to vary from one to another though for identical, acoustics and electrics. Stands to reason it's made of natural materials. I'm lucky that 90 minutes drive is a guitar 'Superstore'. They have 3 of the 000-15M's in at the moment. I'm hoping to get there soon to try them.

 

Thanks for the reply. Of course I totally agree it's a matter of each guitar sounding different due to the fact they're made from wood, and there's only so much you can do in the manufacturing process to attempt to ensure consistency from one example to the other. I do like the look of those SJ's! Just not sure if I could rationalize shelling out the extra for one, but as you stated, if one particular example sounds better than another, it's well worth it.

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fwiw I am not ignorant and I thought I was discussing NOT arguing, enjoy your rationalizations....

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New 2016 Hummingbird Vintage!

 

Then you are on the Bird Club. [thumbup]

 

 

 

BluesKing777.

 

 

Considered one, but I feel kind of like I'm missing something without a J45, or at least some kind of short scale slope shoulder in the stable.

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fwiw I am not ignorant and I thought I was discussing NOT arguing, enjoy your rationalizations....

 

I'm really enjoying them, thanks!

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I guess I don't see any of your suggestions as argumentative either, JVi. Of course, you did offer an opinion that the Martin0015s are less desirable than J45s, and in the context of the OP's request for opinions - you praised the guitar he got rid of and cast dispersion on the one he kept. I bet if SBPark had asked for opinions about selling his J45 BEFORE the fact and you had written the same thing, he'd probably not have been upset. As they say "Timing is everything." Of course, the point of the free exchange of information (detailed specs and opinions) on a forum is to expose those lurking who might benefit from information the OP may not be looking for.

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I guess I don't see any of your suggestions as argumentative either, JVi. Of course, you did offer an opinion that the Martin0015s are less desirable than J45s, and in the context of the OP's request for opinions - you praised the guitar he got rid of and cast dispersion on the one he kept. I bet if SBPark had asked for opinions about selling his J45 BEFORE the fact and you had written the same thing, he'd probably not have been upset. As they say "Timing is everything." Of course, the point of the free exchange of information (detailed specs and opinions) on a forum is to expose those lurking who might benefit from information the OP may not be looking for.

 

Let's just be clear, I'm not upset at his comments. Just thought they were a bit unreasonable since he states that any guitar under a certain model series or price point isn't worth it. Price is not the be all, end all as far as what determines "better", and as we all know "better" is totally subjective. But I guess he's right since it's his opinion. If one person thinks more expensive = better they're for sure entitled to that opinion, just as someone else might use their ears to determine is something is "better" for them. Some put more emphasis on dollar signs equating quality, while others have different criteria, so I apologize for giving him such a hard time for it.

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no opology needed, heated debate.... Im glad to keep positive, and some of the best guitars arnt expensive for sure ! J

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in my OPINION martins under the style 18 are built with an eye to cost savings"
Bolt on neck, artificial fingerboard, hybrid bracing. Hard to dispute. I'd be curious to know what it is about this piece that works for you (OP). It may help clarify your preferences.

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Working over burned ground here, but re "discounting anything less than an 18 series as being sub par is a bit ignorant. Even Chris Martin IV has been quoted as saying the 15 series are probably their best bang for the buck." Bang for the buck is not the same as quality. Style 18 Martins are better made than the 15s (dovetail neck join, X-bracing, RW fretboard). As is the J45. One might prefer playing a style 15. They are brighter, which may work for guys who have spent a lot of time playing electric. But in terms of Tone with a capitol T, its not contest. Btw, anyone who cant get on with a J45, dont get a Hummingbird (even less top). For such, red spruce/mahogany or maple (J185) might be the way to go.

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