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  • choosing a small body acoustic

    I'm looking for a small body acoustic. I started playing bluegrass (have a 1972 D-35) but am moving slowly to jazz. I also have a Gibson ES-175 Steve Howe signature and Ibanez Artstar - both very nice instruments, but am looking for a just-pick-it-up-and-play acoustic. Long story, but setting up the amps and plugging in etc. costs me a lot of practice time. I like the small body. I have spent a lot of time reading reviews and such and have narrowed the selection to Taylor 712ce (rosewood and Engleman spruce); the Taylor 812ce (rosewood and Sitka); or the Bourgeois OMC. Basically I want a small body cutaway acoustic - naked - that sounds like my Martin (maybe a better high end) and plays like my Artstar. I am open to any brand with a financial limit of $3000. What do you think?

  • #2
    Are you open to any suggestions?

    If so, then consider:

    Larriv
    Gear:
    2013 Official Luthier's Forum Medium Jumbo (Western red cedar/mahogany)
    2012 McKnight McUke (soprano ukulele, redwood/mahogany)
    2010 Martin D-16GT
    2006 Larrivee OM-03R
    1998 Fender American Standard Stratocaster (natural ash finish)
    1989 Kramer Stryker
    197? Epiphone Texan FT-160N

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by gregk
      I'm looking for a small body acoustic. I started playing bluegrass (have a 1972 D-35) but am moving slowly to jazz. I also have a Gibson ES-175 Steve Howe signature and Ibanez Artstar - both very nice instruments, but am looking for a just-pick-it-up-and-play acoustic. Long story, but setting up the amps and plugging in etc. costs me a lot of practice time. I like the small body. I have spent a lot of time reading reviews and such and have narrowed the selection to Taylor 712ce (rosewood and Engleman spruce); the Taylor 812ce (rosewood and Sitka); or the Bourgeois OMC. Basically I want a small body cutaway acoustic - naked - that sounds like my Martin (maybe a better high end) and plays like my Artstar. I am open to any brand with a financial limit of $3000. What do you think?


      Wow. What a wonderful limit - 3k. Question, though: Have you narrowed your selection down to those you've noted through reviews alone? For that kind of scratch - in fact, for any amount - I'd suggest playing everything you can get your hands on.

      Having said that... Just living vicariously through your budget for a moment - just for a moment - Bourgeois is an awfully tasty notion. Still, within your range there is a huge array of great guitars to choose from. A few examples...

      http://www.thepodium.com/pm-14397-51-santa-cruz-om-pre-war-mahoganyspruce.aspx

      http://www.thepodium.com/pc-14432-94-santa-cruz-om-short-scale-mahoganycarpathian-spruce.aspx

      http://elderly.com/new_instruments/names/huss-and-dalton-%22tom-m%22-traditional-series-om-maho--HDTOMMRS.htm

      http://www.buffalobrosguitars.com/images22000-22999/ngb22690-larriveeom03r/index.html
      ***Don't let the pricetag on this thing fool you***

      http://www.buffalobrosguitars.com/images19000-19999/ngb19355-larriveeom60/index.html
      ***In case you get fooled by the pricetag on the OM-03R***

      http://www.buffalobrosguitars.com/images20000-20999/ngb20308-webberrbmah/index.html

      http://www.buffalobrosguitars.com/images20000-20999/ngb20098-martinom16rgtcustom/index.html
      ***This is a 16, but that's an ebony - not micarta - board and bridge***

      http://www.dreamguitars.com/preowned/acoustic/Goodall_AKG_3367.htm

      http://elderly.com/new_instruments/items/OM21R.htm

      http://elderly.com/new_instruments/items/OM35SW.htm

      Sorry... Got a little carried away...

      Edit: Waitaminute... Do you need a cutaway? Well, that was fun, anyway...
      I guess I kinda lost control, because in the middle of the play I ran up and lit the evil puppet villain on fire. No, I didn't. Just kidding. I just said that to help illustrate one of the human emotions, which is freaking out. Another emotion is greed, as when you kill someone for money, or something like that. Another emotion is generosity, as when you pay someone double what he paid for his stupid puppet.I.K.F.C.E.S.C.Potato SocietySAWG

      Comment


      • #4
        I agree with Kwak on the Larrivee L-bodies. You won't be disappointed.

        If you dig your Martin, check out some other ones. Certain OM and 000 Martin's can handle flatpick and fingerstyle work quite well.
        "The wisest man I ever knew taught me something I never forgot. And although I never forgot it, I never quite memorized it either. So what I'm left with is the memory of having learned something very wise that I can't quite remember." -- George Carlin

        --Member of The Reasonable Fellers Union, established 7/20/04--

        Be kind.

        Comment


        • #5
          While all the above suggestions are very nice guitars, to be sure, but you say you're moving into jazz, and I think the 812ce is a fine choice. Nice action, great playability, cutaway making up the neck riffs/arpeggios effortless. The 812 sounds great unplugged on jazzy numbers. I have an older one, pre-expressions, so I can't speak to the electronics in it.
          I have a few more traditional instruments, but for jazz I usually pick up the 812 or an Eastman. I'm going out on a limb and guessing that most of the Taylor bashers probably don't play much jazz. Just a hunch, but I can't prove it.
          In any event, in your price range, you're going to get a really nice guitar, no matter what you do. Enjoy the process of elimination. Play everything.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by gregk
            Basically I want a small body cutaway acoustic - naked - that sounds like my Martin (maybe a better high end) and plays like my Artstar. I am open to any brand with a financial limit of $3000. What do you think?


            Lotsa choices. You want a Martinesque small bodied cutaway, no bling. Here's some suggestions:

            New:
            Huss & Dalton OM or CM (a bit larger but very comfortable)
            Bourgeois OM or JOMC
            Martin (several models, maybe too many)

            Used:
            Bill Tippin OMT
            Collings OM or CM
            Santa Cruz OM

            I'd stay away from Larrivee for two reasons. First, they are not like Martins (soundwise). Second, they don't compete well (soundwise) with other brands at the $3k price point.

            Comment


            • #7
              I am playing Kwak's suggested OMV-09 as I write this. Well, in between anyway. I think I finally got the string recipe figured out for me. I'm using a set of D'Addario Custom lights. I swapped the high E and B strings (.011 and .015) with same make .013 and .017. These are the same strings found in their Medium set. Now the trebles punch through the mix. This guitar actually is an OMV-09E with the B-Band. I usually mic the guitar but this onboard package sounds okay once you get it figured out. Lot's of gizmo's to it but staying heavy to the AST and keeping the phase on keeps it pretty woody. The guitar is spruce over R/W B/S and I personally think I would prefer it in mahogany. That's me. One thing about this particular guitar that might bug you - it does me - is that it loses intonation up the neck. That might be resolved with a good setup. I have to de-tune the low E string with a capo at the second fret! But, that's probably a saddle issue and easily fixed. Thought you should know.

              Until today, before messing with the E and B strings, I was underwhelmed with the thin sound from the high end. It sounds pretty good but I'd really like to A/B the same guitar with Mahogany B/S. If you are moving to jazz I think this guitar, or similar make like Martin's OM-21 and others, with the Spruce over Mahogany might be a starting point. Rosewood is pretty warm and might not give you the snap you're looking for.
              You have a very comfortable budget that will cover a lot of choices so take your time. Happy endings!

              Comment













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