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Violeiro

Gibson vs Martin

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Aha, called you attention...lol.

Just wanted to share my opinion - AND I know there are many different likes, dislikes, brand fanboyism.... For me, they are both great on their own way. They do sound very different, play very different, look very different, and that is what makes them both great. However; I did have an enlightenment with Gibson. I have found that (IMO, FOR ME) fits more with what I am looking for in sound, and play-ability . Looks is a toss, I like the looks of both Gibson and Martins.

Why do I feel this way?

(1) I absolutely LOVE the short scale on the dreads

(2) I absolutely HATE the 1 11/16" nut width (feel my fingers are cramped fretting the neck), really like the 1.75" on the new Martins, BUT found the sweet spot for me on the 1.725" of the Gibson I have.

(3) I am really enjoying the "thump" sound of the Gibson

To this date I have had numerous Martin, Taylor and now Gibson guitars. I can say my favorite guitar is my HB, followed by the J45 and then the Martin D-28 (I have had two D-28s and one HD-28).

At the end of the day, both Gibson and Martin make fantastic guitars - comparing them to each other is apples to oranges; it boils down to what plays better on one's hands and sound's better on one's ears.

Taylor makes great guitars too, but I don't feel their sound appealing to me. Again, personal feeling!

Edited by Violeiro

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I think guitars are great, cheap, expensive whatever  or whoever makes em...

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It's only ever going to boil down to personal preference especially when things like look, feel, tonal quality and the like are all such subjective elements and not particularly quantifiable. Anyone that definitively tries to claim any brand is a 'better' guitar than a similar quality brand guitar is lying. Personally, my absolute favourite is my D45 but my Gibsons all have a well-defined place in my collection.

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It's just a matter of personal preference. I happen to mostly own Gibsons, but that doesn't mean I think they are better than other brands. They just happen to suit me better right now.

When I was young and dinosaurs roamed the earth, I desperately wanted a Martin D-18, but all I could afford was a beat-up old J-45. I still have that one more than 50 years later, so it was a pretty good choice.

But one of my holy grail guitars is still a specific Martin model, and when I find the right one, I'll buy it.

I like guitars.

Edited by j45nick
added additional thought
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All things being equal  it does boil down to a personal preference.

I've never owned a Martin.   But I do like the "O" body styles.

I am pretty happy with the SJ200 Standard, Taylor Grand Symphony and a 1978 Alvarez Yari DY74 (which is about as close to a D28 as I'll ever need to get)

I have a pretty nice Guild 12 string, and another Taylor which is a Nylon 514. 

Electrics, I've get a handful of gibsons (well, 5...), a few fenders, a couple of Epiphone archtops.

Guess I'm an equal opportunity guy when it comes to guitars

 

 

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Like most of the previous comments , there’s room for all brands in my house.  I have 9 Martins and 23 Gibson’s. I’ve never sold off a Martin. I’ve sold off many Gibson’s looking for a keeper. I feel the Gibson’s are more comfortable and offer more variety. When I played out, I preferred Taylor and Takamine. I’ve had a few of each but now I only have one Takamine.  My all time favorite is my D41Special.  It’s far from being the most valuable. First guitar my Mom got me was a little Kay in ‘62. I still have it and it would be the last to go.  I do put sentimental over monetary value. 

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While quality is  obviously not subjective  when it comes to everything else no rules to follow.  It is a free for all,   We have Gibsons,  Harmonys, pre-Gibson Epiphones, an assortment of Oscar Schmidt and  Kay Kraft/Kay built instruments,  and one lone Martin (my wife's 12 string) strewn around.  I apologize if I have left anyone out.  The only thing they have in common  is every one of them manages to bring a smile to my face.  It is my favorite until I pick up the next one.  

 

 

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4 hours ago, Dave F said:

Like most of the previous comments , there’s room for all brands in my house.  I have 9 Martins and 23 Gibson’s. I’ve never sold off a Martin. I’ve sold off many Gibson’s looking for a keeper. I feel the Gibson’s are more comfortable and offer more variety. When I played out, I preferred Taylor and Takamine. I’ve had a few of each but now I only have one Takamine.  My all time favorite is my D41Special.  It’s far from being the most valuable. First guitar my Mom got me was a little Kay in ‘62. I still have it and it would be the last to go.  I do put sentimental over monetary value. 

 

Holy smokes batman, that is a lot of guitars...lol. Enjoy them in good health!!!

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23 hours ago, Violeiro said:

Aha, called you attention...lol.

Just wanted to share my opinion - AND I know there are many different likes, dislikes, brand fanboyism....

 

I agree 100%. I've never agreed with blind fanboyism or brand chauvinism. It is blinkered thinking. However, I have NO problem waving the flag for a superior product which I love. So I can proudly proclaim my love of my Gibson SJ200 guitar as one of the finest guitars I've ever played or owned. And I've played guitar close to 50 years now.  Plus, I've sold thousands of guitars while I was a guitar salesperson. At the same time that I sing Gibson's praises, I feel comfortable calling them out when they are just plain BAD! I have the same feeling about Martin and Taylor. I own a stellar Martin and have owned incredible Taylors.  Guitars are like people; there's good in bad in all and you don't fall in love with everyone. At least I don't. 

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So many factors to consider, including you playing style.  Re acoustics, I tend to veer towards maple bodies for a dry, punchy, & quick decaying tone that favors what I'm after in my fingerpicking.  Those characteristics typically leave out a lot of Martins.

Since the '70s, my favorites have been Gibsons & Guilds (both acoustics & electrics), and then Martins.

Today, we are indeed fortunate to have worthwhile choices in every price range.

 

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A D18 has been my benchmark from the first time I heard Norman Blake's Whiskey Before Breakfast record over 30 years ago. I currently have a Collings D1T, Gibson J35 Fuller's, and a Blueridge BR240A. Tonally, ergonomically, and aesthetically, he D1T is the best D18 style guitar I have owned with a SCGC D'03 coming a close second. (I have owned eleven Martins and nine were D18 variations.) I like the D1T so much that I rarely play the J35 any more. I have actually been considering selling the it and buying a Collings CJ35. 

As far as Martin goes, unless I run into a good price on 1999-2000 HD28LSV, I doubt I'll ever own another Martin guitar. The new MLO neck profiles are a deal breaker for me. 

Edited by Fidalgo

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I don't know that Gibson is better than Martin, or if Martin is better than Gibson.  All I can do is buy/play the guitars I like.  To my old eyes, several years back Martin guitars all started looking kind of plain and vanilla and all-alike......and they were being given names like gpcx1ae, dx2ae, 0x2mae, and other code names I don't have the patience or interest to learn.  I still look for the old D28 and other real Martin dreads.   Yeah, they can look kind of plain, but they're monsters....... Anyway, I prefer Gibsons.  I think they help me play as well as I can.  I find them very comfortable to play.  I find more of "me" in them.  They're kind of like an extension of who I am.   I might still get another Martin some day, but it will have to be one of their real guitars, like a D28 or maybe one of the Johnny Cash D35s.  In the long run, I'm a Gibson guy.

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Im a Martin AND a Gibson guy. I like my Martin, and I Like my Gibson Dove, and choosing between them is almost impossible for me. I have a J45 that I was thinking about selling to get a Martin D-18, but now I’m on the trail of a ‘61 J45 so I may go for that instead. I do think I’m a long scale person more than a short scale person, but I’m not very picky about that, found both very playable. In the end, I’m split in half with an almost equal love for both, but I must admit the fold-o-matic headstocks and broken truss rod problems I’ve ran into on Gibsons have me almost leaning towards Martin, but gotta love that Gibson Thump! I had someone me whose seen all the issues I’ve had with my Gibsons ask me why I keep them and keep buying more of them when they viewed them as a “problem child” and my answer is FOR THE SOUND! Nothing like a good sounding Gibson

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LOVE my black Sj200 Standard, but I have a couple of Guild F-50Rs  from 2005 that are two of the best acoustic guitars I have ever seen, heard and /or played! Guild guitars are just flat-out amazing!

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Still a Gibson man after all these years. Was doing an early autumn maintenance last week - going from one to the next - and rediscovered the '51 sisters - SJ and J-185 - all over again. Have never owned or played a Martin that made me as happy as the older Gibsons. Keep looking for one, though....

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15 minutes ago, Murph said:

My truck is a Ram...

ha!  I just bought a clean 2012 Silverado with 26k miles on it..  and I have to say....... you ram guys are all alike..

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On 10/7/2019 at 6:47 AM, Murph said:

My truck is a Ram...

F-250 with 7.3 L International.  Also F-350 King Ranch,

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My oh my oh my, Tom!

I might pick those two 1936 guitars, thank you very much.  AJ and D-28, indeed!

Edited by j45nick
additional info

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I like guitars. Back when I was still buying/selling/trading guitars I tried to remain open-minded when it came to the name on the headstock. That's probably why I ended up owning such a wide variety of guitars over time. I even managed to find particular examples that I was really happy with from makes whose guitars didn't generally appeal that much to me. Sometimes you just never know. It all comes down to the individual guitar as far as I'm concerned.

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I find new Acoustic Guitars have nowhere near the Sound and Tone of an Aged Acoustic Guitar. Most are of no interest to me. The only one I've played recently that compares to my 1975 D35 is a Collings... 

I have Gibson & Epis too which sound great but not compared to my D35.. I did play an older J200 recently that sounded beautiful!

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