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Advanced Jumbo thoughts?

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I'm jealous of that collection!

 

Off topic here but has anyone played an old Harmony Sovereign H1260? I've been thinking of adding one of them as well but never played one personally. I've heard plenty on the internet and they can be had at a tremendous value with all solid tone woods.

I believe Zombiewoof is our resident expert in that area. I own a couple, one redone (x-braced and such) and one that's stock. Interesting guitars, most of which will need neck resets before they can be fully appreciated and comfortably played.

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I believe Zombiewoof is our resident expert in that area. I own a couple, one redone (x-braced and such) and one that's stock. Interesting guitars, most of which will need neck resets before they can be fully appreciated and comfortably played.

How do you like yours? How strong is the bass tone?

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I'll take my 2012 AJ over any J45 any day fo the week. Does almost everything a good J45 can do, sounds great when lightly strummed and fingerpicked, but also is n incredible flat picker and can hold it's own in a big campfire jam with a bunch of other acoustics. Mine has a really slim neck, which isn't an issue for me, as I can pretty much play anything, and it's super comfy to play. I just made a new nut and saddle for mine this past weekend, and had it PLEK'd last year. I set it up with 13's and it plays like a guitar with 12's. Ridiculously versatile guitar. Several J45's or different incarnations (J45 Standards, Vintage, True Vintage) have come and gone, and the AJ has reigned supreme. I always loved the low end of a J45, but never liked how the B and E strings sounded. I always thought they sounded unbalanced compared to the rest of the guitar, sounding thin and clangy. I think the AJ is more balanced. It's a big sounding guitar, but without the extra boominess that a Martin dread typically haw.

 

As someone who has owned a D-28, HD-28 and currently owns a new D-35, I'd respectfully disagree that owning an AJ and a Martin dread would be redundant. Not even close. The AJ is super direct and in your face. Not the best strummer, but a killer flat picker, cross picker and finger picker, and little phrasings and embellishments really pop out. The Martin is a killer strummer, and obviously a great flatpicker, but embellishments and what not can get a little buried/not as prominent as with an AJ, and martins are much boomier in the lows (some call this muddy I guess, I call it "warmth"). Two VERY different sounds that will make you play the guitar differently.

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Edited by sbpark

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How do you like yours? How strong is the bass tone?

They're OK. Having one stock and one rebraced has given me a bit more perspective on what to expect from that model. Personally, I like the sound of the original, ladder bracing and all. When I was younger and Harmony was still making instruments in the USA, we called them the 'poor man's D-18'. And they do have a run-of-the-mill D-18 kind of sound. As for the bass, it's fair. You don't get the boom that a healthy Martin can deliver, but it's clear and balances nicely with the volume of the instrument. My rebraced example has a hint of a scalloped brace sound, although the braces are by no means scalloped. To me, it's more 'mushy' than the standard model, but that's just one man's opinion. At any rate, they tend to be very affordable and are a lot of fun to play☺

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They're OK. Having one stock and one rebraced has given me a bit more perspective on what to expect from that model. Personally, I like the sound of the original, ladder bracing and all. When I was younger and Harmony was still making instruments in the USA, we called them the 'poor man's D-18'. And they do have a run-of-the-mill D-18 kind of sound. As for the bass, it's fair. You don't get the boom that a healthy Martin can deliver, but it's clear and balances nicely with the volume of the eadsinstrument. My rebraced example has a hint of a scalloped brace sound, although the braces are by no means scalloped. To me, it's more 'mushy' than the standard model, but that's just one man's opinion. At any rate, they tend to be very affordable and are a lot of fun to play☺

 

Well I can only speak for the particular example I own but I have alao owned many a fine Martin dread (GE’s, 40 series, customs) and my 12 fret AJ is the only rosewood dread I kept. It’s bass is very deep in a ‘vertical’ sense in that it is not as boomy/flabby or overpowering of the other string/note frequencies like on some Martin rosewood dreads. Capoing up the neck helps a Martin in that regard but the AJ is great either way. In double drop D (both E strings tuned down to D) it is a deep cathedral of haunting power and richness - without the definition robbing bass flab.m

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Well I can only speak for the particular example I own but I have alao owned many a fine Martin dread (GE’s, 40 series, customs) and my 12 fret AJ is the only rosewood dread I kept. It’s bass is very deep in a ‘vertical’ sense in that it is not as boomy/flabby or overpowering of the other string/note frequencies like on some Martin rosewood dreads. Capoing up the neck helps a Martin in that regard but the AJ is great either way. In double drop D (both E strings tuned down to D) it is a deep cathedral of haunting power and richness - without the definition robbing bass flab.m

 

Interesting about capo'ing...I agree with capo'ing a Martin and it tends to control some of the "boominess", but for some stuff I find that capo'ing an AJ it can sometimes suck the sustain of the bass out of the guitar just a tad bit too much, and results in a really fast decay compared to the other strings. Not always a bad thing, but still an interesting finding with a rosewood dread because I'm used to the low notes lingering for a longer period. This attribute comes in handy though when played without a capo because the AJ's bass is very "vertical" like you mentioned but still prominent, and it stays out of the way of the other strings, unlike a Martin dread where the bass can linger and start stepping on other notes long after you've played those low notes. I'm not saying it's necessarily a bad thing though, because I like both depending what I'm playing, and each guitar makes you play it differently. It's kind of fun and refreshing to be able to have that tight, punchy, direct, crisp attack of the AJ, then switch to my D-35 and have that lush, rounder, warm, full sound. If I was to cut through and be heard with either volume or more miss I reach for the QJ, if I want fullness and warmth I do for the D-35.

Edited by sbpark

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For those of you who have a maple back and sides "Advanced Jumbo" how would you describe the sound? How does it sound compared to a J200? I love my AJ, and also love J200's, but can't really justify shelling out for one (I've owned two and foolishly sold them in the past). A used maple back and sides AJ can be had for a nice price.

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For those of you who have a maple back and sides "Advanced Jumbo" how would you describe the sound? How does it sound compared to a J200? I love my AJ, and also love J200's, but can't really justify shelling out for one (I've owned two and foolishly sold them in the past). A used maple back and sides AJ can be had for a nice price.

 

My Maple AJ doesn’t really sound anything like my SJ200.!The AJ is lpuder and more crisp, whereas the SJ200 is more round and sustainy in the bottom end. The AJ has a quicker decay and is more punchy, both are lovely but very different beasts.

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SB Park: ”The AJ is super direct and in your face. Not the best strummer, but a killer flat picker, cross picker and finger picker, and little phrasings and embellishments really pop out. ”

 

100% agree with that assessment. That is exactly the niche my AJ fills between my J-45 and Hummingbird Vintage

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I have what Gibson on the interior label calls an "AJ Supreme". I bought it fairly cheaply a few years back, due to it having a repaired neck break. The guitar has an adirondack top, madagascar back/sides, as well as ebony fingerboard and bridge. Compared to a Martin rosewood dread, this AJ is much more detailed and cutting. If played too hard it borders on harsh, but if played with a normal hand it sounds great. I'm just a very basic guitar player and can't do much fancy stuff. If forced to pick between my AJ and Martin, I would go for the Martin. Not because it sounds better, but because it is more forgiving, and my mistakes and shortcomings are less obvious compared to the AJ. A better guitarist could very well make the complete opposite choice, for the exact same reasons [biggrin]

 

Lars

 

Here is my guitar:

 

IMG_0455

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I've had a 2001 J-45, 2002 Advanced Jumbo EIR, and 2017 J35. I now have a 2002 AJ and a 2017 J35. My AJ IS FOREVER, AND I think the J35 is too. My AJ is a great one. I mainly fingerpick, and I play it into a microphone pointed at the upper fretboard. My J35 is the lightest Gibson I have ever played. it is LIGHT. It is also killer. I don't know if there are bad ones out there, but mine is one of the finest guitars for playing with a pick that I have ever enjoyed playing. I have no complaint with the sound of my J35 when fingerpicking at all. But my AJ simply does a better job. My J-45 was sold, because either I don't like the J-45 tone, or I bought a bad one. It was an easy choice for me selling the J-45 after a month or so with my J35. My J35 sounds excellent plugged in, and I intend to get a Tonewood Amp, because as good as my J35 is, the Tonewood was made for a guitar with the tone that my J35 carries. I was glad that the J-45 lost the battle, because the difference in price made my J35 the best bargain on a Gibson acoustic that I could have dreamed of. There are monster J35's out there, and I wouldn't dream of calling my J35 a J-45 lite. Three of my bandmates fully concurred with my choice. They saw absolutely no reason whatsoever to keep the J-45 other than the really sweet sunburst that had been laid down on it. Not all J35's will lose a playoff with a J-45. There are good, great, and average Gibson acoustics of every model. I'm fortunate to have two GREAT Gibson acoustics. That is a great position to be in, especially when one sounds great plugged in.

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