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New hummingbird purchase

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I purchase a new Hummingbird yesterday (standard with vintage starburst). And I'm very happy with my purchase. I have a query about how much these open up over time.

 

Basically I've spent a while looking for a Gibson to love. I've tried numerous J-45s, a Dove, couple of Songwriters, Sheryl Crows, John Lennon 160something. Almost all didn't float my boat. My favorite was a Blues King until I tried this Hummingbird.

 

There were 3 in the shop. 2 had a sweet tone with some beautiful harmonics, but a little lifeless. The third (or the first I tried) didn't sound like either of the other 2. It was much more lively and so much fun to play. A lot of erm .. jangle? Sparkle? But, specific sweetness of the other 2 wasn't quite there.

 

I went on a hunch that the tone would open up more with age, but the other whi;le sounding sweet would never have the fun factor I was looking for.

 

I wondered what others experience of the hummingbird was, how it ages etc. I guess I'm suffering a slight amount of anxiety that I'm missing that specifc Hummingbird sound. Of course that goes away when I play it :)

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Welcome.

 

Congrats on yer new H'Bird. How about posting a couple of pics?

 

Gibson acoustics . . . mucho play-in time - usually.

 

So much so there have been numerous "Tone Rite" threads over the last couple years - http://tonerite.com/ . . . <no affiliation>

 

I'm not convinced, but there's plenty of guys that swear by it.

 

IMO, start out with bone - bone nut, bone saddle, bone pins. I think the STD comes bone nut, tusq saddle and plastic pins. Check out Colosi - http://www.guitarsaddles.com/ . . . <no affiliation>

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As mentioned a couple of times here, I have tried 2 H-birds in a nearby shop at several occasions. A Standard and a True Vintage. With same strings put on the same day, the Standard keeps winning – audio wise (I'm mad about the T.V. finish). Wonder if you asked the shopkeeper about the strings on the 3 models there. What type, when were they put on and so. . . Anyway, I'm a little worried about you worrying already. By now – the second day with the Bird in your hands – you should just be pleased and flying. Then again I know the splinter of skepticism. In case you keep it, give a year for the guitar to open up and find itself - and you 2 to find each other. If it appears like the one in this splendid demonstration by now, I'd say you're on the right track.This is the way they are supposed to sound from birth.

 

By the way there's a bunch of other tests in this series, and they're all fine. Nice plain mics and a fan of different styles played the same way each time. It's all done so neutral and very straight, that it's easy to ad an imagination of how the instrument would be in your own hands.

 

Put on the earphones and listen in.

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Eminor7: Link was missing from your post any chance of sending it over again?

 

Now don't misunderstand me. I am very happy. It is also the most I've ever spent on a guitar. £2000 is a lot of money. So, I'm just curious. The other HB was a TV. And I decided against it. The other was another standard but just out the box. Again not as nice. This guitar definitely has soul. I like instruments that "try", that feeling of pushing for something. Most of the guitars I've been testing sounded very beautiful, but it was a very effortless sound, which left them sounding quite dull. Does that make sense? This hummingbird sound very "unconstrained".

 

I own a mid 90's seagull and believe it or not it sounds beautiful. It's had 15 years of furious playing an it's incredibly warm and very open. Which is why I was looking for something with more complexity and less mush. The seagull sounds "similar" to the Martin d15. Which surprised be given the original £280 I paid new.

 

I'll post some pics later

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I bought a new H'bird in may 2010, built sept 2009. I was already in love with its looks and sound (recorded clips found online that is), but really lost myself when actually holding and playing a real one at a music shop. Since the guitar is mine it keeps playing and sounding better and better over time. On the one hand because the guitar itself really starts to open up. But at the same time my playing has developed. In the beginning I was just gently striking the strings, like I was constantly aware of the price tag of the guitar, but now we are growing towards each other and I play it like MY GUITAR, not as a pricy instrument.

 

Too bad the pickguard keeps coming off...but we're working on that [smile]

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I bought a new H'bird in may 2010, built sept 2009. I was already in love with its looks and sound (recorded clips found online that is), but really lost myself when actually holding and playing a real one at a music shop. Since the guitar is mine it keeps playing and sounding better and better over time. On the one hand because the guitar itself really starts to open up. But at the same time my playing has developed. In the beginning I was just gently striking the strings, like I was constantly aware of the price tag of the guitar, but now we are growing towards each other and I play it like MY GUITAR, not as a pricy instrument.

 

Too bad the pickguard keeps coming off...but we're working on that [smile]

are you kidding about the pickguard? Can't tell.

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I'm affraid I'm not...

Wow, it looks like that Hummingbird has developed a wing, and is getting ready to fly.

 

Better not stab yourself on the pointy bit at the end.

 

I'd see about getting that taken care of.

 

Fred

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Well, im going to go in different direction and say that Ive been particuarly underwhelmed with modern Hummingbirds. Looks wise I think the HB is the most beautiful guitar out there. But having played a few HB's in different shops, in different countries even different continents there was only one that really blew me away ( in NYC btw). On the other hand I played a number of other Gibson models which consistently were oustanding, in particular SWD's and J-45's.

 

All the other HB's I played sounded fine but simply not earth shattering, just pssively 'nice'. If i was to buy a HB it would be a vintage 60's model as they really do sound amazingly sweet.

 

You should not be buying a guitar hoping that it will 'open up' over time. It should be a knockout from the first strum IMO.

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If i was to buy a HB it would be a vintage 60's model as they really do sound amazingly sweet.

 

 

Just a hint. . .

Sound wise, Vintage 60'ties H-birds, SJ's and C&W's are least 2 different things. Pre/post 67. It's like day and night, as one dealer told me. He was right. Some say you have to go below 64 to get the cream.

Think I have a slight clue 'bout what they mean.

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I wondered what others experience of the hummingbird was, how it ages etc. I guess I'm suffering a slight amount of anxiety that I'm missing that specifc Hummingbird sound. Of course that goes away when I play it :)
I'll add my perspective even though I don't own a Bozeman H'Bird. I did have three 'vintage' 'Birds and it's always been one of my favorite guitar models as my first good guitar was an early '70s one that sounded, strangely enough, great. I played that one for nearly 20 years. Also had a couple of '65s, great sounding examples of the breed. I've played a number of the Bozeman 'Birds and some are, really, better for a lot of music than most of the vintage 'Birds as they can have more volume & are suited for more types of music. Not all Hummingbirds, or any other guitar model, sound great. Gibsons can be IME maybe more inconsistent in sound than some other makes but good ones are worth owning & cherishing.

 

I owned mostly vintage stuff years ago but here's my take from my experience owning guitars that were new vs. vintage, an '89 HD-35 Martin from 1990 until 2003, and a 2003 AJ reissue from 2003 until tonight: if it is a Martin or a Gibson and it sounds good when it is new, it will sound better the longer you play it, and it will sound better yet if you 'whomp it', meaning love it and play it as hard as you like. A lot.

 

My AJ is now so resonant that it's remarkable. Always good, now great, and will just keep on getting better. Play it & enjoy it & most of all, don't worry about it. It is a good guitar if you like it now.

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I'm kind of going through the same thing. I purchased a brand new (12/10) standard HB just over a month ago, the culmination of several-years telling myself, "Someday, oh, yes...!" I went mail-order so I could get that clean, new guitar smell!

 

Open chords sound wonderful. My quibble is the action is a bit higher than I prefer, so barre chords and licks do not ring as I would like them the further up the neck I play. Things tend to get harder to play. But, at least in my experience, all *new* Gibby acoustics I tried had that same quality. Room for adjustments, I figure.

 

Soon, I'm going to have it in for a complete set-up. I figure that'll make it much easier to play all the way up the neck, and I can enjoy it as I should. So that's the thing... I know it'll be fine after the set-up. Till then I'm on pins and needles, made worse because I have OCD. So naturally I've also gone back and forth about the purchase. (Probably because it's now the most expensive guitar I own!)

 

Oh, and with regards to non-sticking pickguards... one of the ones I played at the big box store had a pickguard that was peeling right off from the corner, too.

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That's ineresting as I actually thougth this HB sounded rather flat and reserved, but I guess each to his own ...lol ..

 

"I like instruments that "try", that feeling of pushing for something. Most of the guitars I've been testing sounded very beautiful, but it was a very effortless sound, which left them sounding quite dull. Does that make sense? This hummingbird sound very "unconstrained".

Great !

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OG0hlwxQBZM

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Well my hummingbird sounds less warm but more clear than the video. I actually took it back to the shop to compare again against the 60s version and another of the same. I also wanted to yet the action adjusted a little. The 60s one again sounded warmer but the clarity was lacking.

 

I guess everyone has their own preference. Personally ever j45 I played sounded uninspiring. Very even and detailed but missing a little magic.

 

It feels that my hummingbird is going to seriously improve my playing. It really want to be dug into. I like that about it very much.

 

My post purchase anxiety will be gone by tomorrow I'm sure

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That's ineresting as I actually thougth this HB sounded rather flat and reserved, but I guess each to his own ...lol ..

 

 

 

 

Think I see what you mean. There's not that much projection, neither the depth known from various other guitars – you simply have to fancy the very character of the H-bird. The tight, varm, not too loud sweetness. Else, forget it. . .

Did you hear the J-45 test in the same series, , , and do you put on earphones ??

 

 

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I remember listening to this test sometime ago, not through headphones but through decent speakers. I did prefer the tone of J-45. I thougth it was more open and lively then the HB which I find appealing. Funnily enough the Taylor 914ce sounded the best to my ears in that test, surprisingly.

 

But I think I do know what you mean by the the tight, warm HB sound. But if I compare it to my 69 CW, which is basically a HB with different bling its a very different tone. Its woody, tight but also has wonderful projection and response, much more senstive. I find with the modern HB's you really need to 'wrestle' a good tone out of them, which some folks enjoy but Id rather have the option of a guitar that will sound great in any way the I play it.

 

Think I see what you mean. There's not that much projection, neither the depth known from various other guitars – you simply have to fancy the very character of the H-bird. The tight, varm, not too loud sweetness. Else, forget it. . .

Did you hear the J-45 test in the same series, , , and do you put on earphones ??

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Well after an evening playing friends I can say this is the sweetest guitar I've played. I swapped the factory strings to some exilir lights and it sounds awesome. So much feeling, detail and warmth.

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