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Old 08-31-2019, 08:09 AM
Steve DeRosa Steve DeRosa is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Staten Island, NY - for now
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Originally Posted by Llewlyn View Post
I would like to dive deeper into jazz and was thinking of buying an archtop w following considerations:

- Price range around $1500.
- I play exclusively with my fingertips.
- I am not very comfortable with 1 11/16 at nut and prefer 1 3/4 ish.
- I am looking for mellow, jazz, warm tone rather rocky/country overdriven tone.
- It is desirable, but not mandatory, that the guitar is "loud" and nice unplugged...

Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin CW II...this is ubiquitous among reviewers, but I've heard that the sound is rather thin...
I own one (as does Tony Bennett's guitarist - and I'd tend to think he and his boss both know a little something about tone), and if you're looking for that thumpy/thuddy tone most often associated with laminated jazzboxes you're not going to get it here - which I personally think is a good thing if you're a fingerpicker. If you're familiar with the Godin family of acoustic instruments (Seagull, Simon & Patrick, Norman) the CW II feels virtually identical to one of their mini-jumbos in a blindfold test, exceptionally lightweight and very "acoustic" in terms of handling qualities - mine comes in just a tick over five pounds on the strap, about 2-3 pounds less than a comparably-sized ES-175/Epiphone Zephyr Regent - and the twin P-90 pickups and ultra-thin (laminated) woods used in its construction give it an "airy" tone, reminiscent in many respects of the similarly-constructed Brooklyn-made Gretsch instruments of the '50s/60s. It's not an acoustic powerhouse - you need to be looking at an all-carved Eastman if you're after that kind of versatility - but if you set it up with flatwound 13's you'll get a clear, crisp, forward amplified tone, not thin by any means, as well as a useful low-volume unplugged practice tone. FWIW Godin also makes a twin-humbucker version if you feel you need a more-classic '50s bop/rockabilly tone, but these tend to be hard-to-find here in the lower 48 - you might want to check with some of the Canadian dealers if you're interested...

Hope this helps...
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