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recent trials while on my travels


ParlourMan

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Despite scoring a Woody Guthrie model recently, I took an opportunity to visit a gibson dealer in Glasgow, Scotland while I was home for a bit last weekend.

 

Firstly, the conclusion of my trails were that the infamous inconsistency was very much in my mind, due to it's lack of appearance ;-)

 

In my trials were

2 x J200's

1 x J200 Studio

1x J45

1 x songwriter std

1 X L1 (Not the RJ model but a custom shop job)

1 x 1930's braced sloped shoulder job, AJ/SJ banner

1 x The John Lennon j-160e guitar

1 x 2nd hand super 400 jazz box, with the 18" lower bout.

 

first up, I had a look and sniff around at the Gibson corner and spotted those listed above (and more) and decided to take a seat and have a play through with a few... all were looking and smelling fairly tasty. I'll deal with the less preferred models right off, the songwriter, it sounded nice, but unfortunately it was a neck-diver, right off the block the store guy said "it sounds great but it'll be a pain if you play standing up" which was a very accurate assessment. Dimensions wise you wouldn't expect a neck diver on a body this size but it clearly suffered from this....

 

After a bit of chit-chat with the store owner and the merits of the Sheryl Crow model (he likes less bling) I moved on to the L1, small, bit different to the Keb Mo, very cool but it didn't unsettle me about my choice in going for the Keb Mo instead. cool looks and genuine small box 'big' sound... Still tight but would age graciously I imagine. Definitely a likeable guitar.

 

The j-45 was a J-45... dependable and enticing. ;-)

 

The 1930's style braced AJ/SJ banner logo job was electrics free, the 30's style bracing was in all honesty a selling feature in the blurb, but offered me nothing much except cosmetics over the j45, the 30's style bracing seemed to be a combo of very thin tall braces like in my Woody Guthrie and bigger flatter ones on the lower bout.

 

The j-160e John Lennon was was described to me as a "terrible guitar, truly terrible" and "shocking price for a laminate guitar that's more of a nod to who used them than an actual guitar", harsh words from a Gibson dealer I'm sure you'll agree but without offending anyone who actually has one of these models, his points were not without merit, plugged may be different but I wouldn't have shelled out the costs involved for the unplugged sound from this model despite the aura of cool around it....

 

The super 400 jazzbox, crazy big body... not really what I would go for myself, but beautiful fit n finish and even as a 2nd hand job, it was fairly immaculate.

 

Finally on to the J200's... quite simply I want one... big, full, had enough lows to entice me, no short of highs from the maple, not as much of a 'purely for strumming' guitar as many would suggest of these, in short it was cool... if I was financially better endowed and promiscuous with it, I'd have been posting an NGD thread instead. Interestingly the aura pickup system did have the USB which allows the loading of other images despite what I've heard about it being only usable for Gibson's preloaded images.

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Thanks for the write up PM, I always like these guitar shop road stories.

 

Couple question, which of the J-200's did you like the most ? From my experience Ive prefered the Studios over the Standard, how was your experience ? Found they had more bass and generally more rumble, for a lack of a better word.

 

And secondly, what do you mean by 'neck diver' on the SWD, I dont get that ?

 

I fine the neck on the SWD not as comfortable as on the SJ, but I dont feel any difference in playing it sitting or standing, in terms of comofort ?

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Hey EA,

 

With a strap button installed where it would be on an electric, it was going to behave like a SG and neck-dive, ie, a bit bit neck heavy, so not so much an issue with a traditional strap tied around the end of the nut or whatever, but even in the lap you could feel it was a neck heavy guitar quite easily.... of course this isn't much of an issue when sat down, but can be a case of constantly readjusting if you're playing stood up.

 

For the 200's, I tried 3, 2 std's and one studio, soundwise, little in it to be honest, cash wise, well you're paying for the bling and the burst over the natural less ornate edition. If I was pushed to make a choice I'd say the first standard I played, but then it was the first of the three too, so perhaps a 'wow' factor involved, maybe the tiniest bit more compression even distribution of power... but swap them about, blindfold me and I might not make the same call...

 

it reminded me of this, which I think is just a fabulous sounding J200.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=39EUP1z_w38

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Ok, i get you with the SWD, and i would agree in this case. It is somewhat neck heavy and it took me quite some time to adjust with it. I think Im used to it now but it took me a while to get used to it for sure. Not as comfy as the SJ (which by the way if youre interested i posted a thread with the AL SJ being played out live).

 

This J-200 sounds awesome, so rich and deep, this is the key for a good J-200 in my books. Some of the ones Ive played were great strummers, great note seperation but were lacking depth, but the really good ones had amazing depth and warmth. The best of the lot was this Sutdio that was in my local shop sometime ago. Unsuprisingly it went pretty darn fast.

 

You gott da GAS bad man ... [wink]

 

Hey EA,

 

With a strap button installed where it would be on an electric, it was going to behave like a SG and neck-dive, ie, a bit bit neck heavy, so not so much an issue with a traditional strap tied around the end of the nut or whatever, but even in the lap you could feel it was a neck heavy guitar quite easily.... of course this isn't much of an issue when sat down, but can be a case of constantly readjusting if you're playing stood up.

 

For the 200's, I tried 3, 2 std's and one studio, soundwise, little in it to be honest, cash wise, well you're paying for the bling and the burst over the natural less ornate edition. If I was pushed to make a choice I'd say the first standard I played, but then it was the first of the three too, so perhaps a 'wow' factor involved, maybe the tiniest bit more compression even distribution of power... but swap them about, blindfold me and I might not make the same call...

 

it reminded me of this, which I think is just a fabulous sounding J200.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=39EUP1z_w38

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