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AnPeter90

Cheaper alternative to gibson hummingbird?

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Anyone have recommendations for a cheaper alternative to gibson hummingbird BUT still sound good? I've struggled to find a true vintage one so just looking for alternative as have not read good things about hummingbird pro. I am just a strummer and only sing/play in solo situation so looking to get guitar that 'surrounds' me and is good for vocal accompaniment.

 

Know the epiphone version exists but will only consider if any gibson owners think it actually works like a hummingbird, not just look like one.

 

Any Eastman, recording king, blueridge alternatives maybe?

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I've owned the Eastman E20SS. Nice guitar but does not sound like a Gibson.

The Hummingbird is unique. I don't think any guitar sounds like it. Sorry.

The J45s are good for strumming and singing with. Used J45 or J50? Or perhaps an older WM45?

Used Humminbird Standards sell for about $1700. Used J45s about 200 less.

A smaller guitar, that's more quiet, but has a great sweet strumming tone is the LG2 American Eagle. They sell for about $1100 used.

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Do you mean true vintage in the sense of a old one from the 60ies or do you refer to the model designation "true vintage" on modern gibsons?

 

imho, an epiphone won't get you anywhere near the real thing! sorry!

 

The hummingbird pro has a smaller body than the normal hummingbird, therefore its another guitar! Still many love them for good reasons, I guess.

 

the mentioned sheryl crow/ country Western is closest to the hummingbird.

 

If you looking at other models, you might consider a j-35, pros: very light built, like the tv models, one of the cheapest gibson models around, not as mid pronounced as other round shoulder models, cons: its not a hummingbird! who would have thought? ](*,)

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Aussies right.

They're what they are. Epiphone won't come close. Nor will anything else really. You may be able to get a guitar you're happy with the sound of it that's a personal thing .

 

Just save up longer. It'll be worth it

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I know it's frustrating when you ask a simple question and don't get a simple answer. But, in this case - I think that was inevitable.

The H'Bird has stood alone as an icon for 50 +/_ years for a reason. Yes, there are copies and there are models with variations - but there are no 'cheaper alternatives' to the 'hog H'bird.

As you've pointed out - The H'Bird Pro, is significantly different.

And the Epi - I can tell you from a couple of years doing a weekly lesson sitting across from a student who had one, while I played my Gibson H'bird - there was NO similarity, other than the superficial cosmetics.

The J45 - many similarities, but much bolder sound.

If you are asking this question, having spent hours 'hearing' real H'birds and now know that unique sound is what you want (and not a Kissing Cousin version, for example like a small body Gibson) you need to put off your GAS until you can increase your Guitar Acquisition Fund ten fold from Epiphone to Gibson. If, on the other hand, you are asking this based on having been swayed by the history and romance behind this model - you should spend a few hours at a GC playing and listening to other makes and models in your price range and wait until one grabs you by both ears! G'Luck.

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Anyone have recommendations for a cheaper alternative to gibson hummingbird BUT still sound good?

 

You get what you pay for. But do the research first, so you don't get less than you paid for.

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Try the Epiphone Masterbilts, I own lots of them and they are really great guitars at much lower price. IMHO they sound about 90% as good as a Gibson at just 30% of the price. If you can find a used DR-500M I'm sure you'll be very happy with it. Or just buy a brand new DR-500MCE, AJ-45 or AJ-500RCE. I'd say at least check them out before you buy anything else.

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Good question for which, as noted earlier, there won't likely be many satisfactory answers. A cheap(er) alternative is always going to be just that. Unless you can be happy with, at best, an instrument that "sounds sorta like one 'a them Hummingbirds, don't it?" you're better off being patient and saving your pennies.

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I have found this topic very intriguing for some strange reason. I don't own a Hummingbird but if I was into D- style guitars it would be the one I'd go for...at least Gibson had the sense to try and dress up what I consider a pretty boring style/shape AND it has a short scale. But, I looked at the Epiphone copy on a couple of big sites and it gets rave reviews from quite a few people. They may not know what a real Hummingbird is supposed to sound like but they like what they bought.

But what came to mind is that just about anyone who makes guitars, the large producers and the small shops, produce their take on Martin D-18's and D-28's and there is much discussion as to how close a lot of them get to that Martin sound; pre-war especially. It must drive Chris Martin to distraction as to why people don't just buy a Martin. Meanwhile Gibson keeps making the Hummingbird with a couple of slight variations (and they own Epiphone) and the guitar building world sleeps. It strikes me as a stroke of genius (or good luck perhaps) that in making the H-bird distinctive, through the cosmetics that Gibson decided on from the outset, there just isn't a horde of imitators to contend with and few, if any, ways to get THAT sound other than buying the real deal. Another lesson in how to carve out a niche in a market. A huge market in this case. I sense another Martin CEO model/copy in the works. Or have they already done a CEO-HB?

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I'm with old cowboy and the others about the penny saving. I tried the same option you are up against. It didn't work out no matter what I tried to fool my mind with after I acquired an epi bird. The problem was that the Hummingbird was branded in my mind, like a old scar on your skin. Thanks to my saving pennies over the years, 2 months later, after the epi purchase, I went down and pulled the cash out of my pocket and took it home. At that point, that's one scar that disappeared. As one said, the birds have been a stand alone for all these years and I haven't heard of any that even comes close. Sorry this wasn't the answer you were hoping for. Good Luck in your search.

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Another plus vote on the SC/CW. I play mine more than any of my guitars. It just does the job.

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Regular forumites will already be familiar with this video from Anderton’s. The contrast between the Epiphone and Gibson Hummingbird couldn’t be more stark, starting at t = 3:15. So much so, that it makes one wonder (considering alleged inventory/order requirements to remain a Gibson dealer) if Anderton’s would rather sell ten Epiphones, or one Gibson:

 

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I must agree and say that the Epi Mastebilt will be the closest to a Gibson if you want to stay in that circle, else go for new/used J-15 best bang IMHO !!! [thumbup]

 

Peace!

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Regular forumites will already be familiar with this video from Anderton’s. The contrast between the Epiphone and Gibson Hummingbird couldn’t be more stark, starting at t = 3:15. So much so, that it makes one wonder (considering alleged inventory/order requirements to remain a Gibson dealer) if Anderton’s would rather sell ten Epiphones, or one Gibson:

 

Nicely stated reference to Gibson's stocking and reorder requirements - and there's no 'alleged' about it. Gibson hasn't wanted to do much with small dealerships for at least 20 years.

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I must agree and say that the Epi Mastebilt will be the closest to a Gibson if you want to stay in that circle, else go for new/used J-15 best bang IMHO !!! [thumbup]

 

Peace!

 

I think that's the best advice if your on a budget and really want a great sounding Gibson you cannot go wrong with a J-15.

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One under the radar guitar you should look for is a early to mid '90s Gibson J-30. It's the same guitar as the early to mid '90s Hummingbird without the bling.

I've seen them on Ebay and other sites for $800-$1200. Might be worth looking into.

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One under the radar guitar you should look for is a early to mid '90s Gibson J-30. It's the same guitar as the early to mid '90s Hummingbird without the bling.

I've seen them on Ebay and other sites for $800-$1200. Might be worth looking into.

A very astute observation! I knew that, too, but apparently lost it in some 'senior moment' or other. I've played a couple - they're nice!

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One under the radar guitar you should look for is a early to mid '90s Gibson J-30. It's the same guitar as the early to mid '90s Hummingbird without the bling.

I've seen them on Ebay and other sites for $800-$1200. Might be worth looking into.

 

Forgot about the J-30, there's one in the AGF classifieds http://www.acousticguitarforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=452061

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Anyone have recommendations for a cheaper alternative to gibson hummingbird BUT still sound good? I've struggled to find a true vintage one so just looking for alternative as have not read good things about hummingbird pro. I am just a strummer and only sing/play in solo situation so looking to get guitar that 'surrounds' me and is good for vocal accompaniment.

 

Know the epiphone version exists but will only consider if any gibson owners think it actually works like a hummingbird, not just look like one.

 

Any Eastman, recording king, blueridge alternatives maybe?

 

save your money and find a nice 90s Hummingbird.. you wont be happy till you do.. there out there.. Nice Guitars too..

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