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  #16  
Old 02-01-2019, 01:57 PM
upsidedown upsidedown is offline
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Had an AR605, mahogany back, straight acoustic model. Beautiful instrument, but with a very fragile finish. I share Jeff’s taste for tones darker, less nasal than this one had.

Anyone ever try Eastman’s AR405? I’m curious to know how it compares - unplugged and amped - to a Godin Kingpin.
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  #17  
Old 03-04-2019, 04:08 PM
Bernieman Bernieman is offline
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So what are these Chinese guitars with a darker, less nasal (and better) sound, talking about all-solid budget archtop guitars ?
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  #18  
Old 11-08-2021, 04:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bernieman View Post
So what are these Chinese guitars with a darker, less nasal (and better) sound, talking about all-solid budget archtop guitars ?
I'd like to know that too
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  #19  
Old 11-08-2021, 04:40 PM
Silly Moustache Silly Moustache is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bernieman View Post
So what are these Chinese guitars with a darker, less nasal (and better) sound, talking about all-solid budget archtop guitars ?
I'm struggling to understand your question, but what I can say is that my two Eastman AR805s are not built to echo the strident middle/treble rhythm box sound that we expect from the acoustic archtops of the '30s.

They are fuller, rounder tonally , almost as warm as a flat top. Very good for melodic playing, but less so as that Freddie Green rhythm sound.
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  #20  
Old 11-09-2021, 05:20 AM
dkstott dkstott is offline
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I owned 2 early Eastman guitars. T-145 Thin Body & A 803CE
Both guitars had extremely fragile finishes . they cracked crazed and chipped.here in Connecticut & neither left the house except for lessons.

QUOTE=upsidedown;5967014]Had an AR605, mahogany back, straight acoustic model. Beautiful instrument, but with a very fragile finish. I share Jeff’s taste for tones darker, less nasal than this one had.

Anyone ever try Eastman’s AR405? I’m curious to know how it compares - unplugged and amped - to a Godin Kingpin.[/QUOTE]
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  #21  
Old 11-09-2021, 08:24 AM
mr. beaumont mr. beaumont is offline
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Any solid wood Eastman is going to have a lot more acoustic presence than a Godin Kingpin.

Archtops are a confusing world...you have acoustic guitars, and electric guitars, and acoustic guitars that sound good plugged in, and electric guitars that sound decent unplugged...there's no "swiss army" archtop, for sure.

I would think a lot of people coming from a flat top would like the sounds of the Eastman better.

We should probably toss "Gypsy Jazz" guitars into the mix as well, just to muddy the waters further (but in a very fun way)
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  #22  
Old 11-09-2021, 08:25 AM
dkstott dkstott is offline
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Scale length on Eastman guitars are typically 25" or longer. Not everyone likes the playability of longer scale length.

Longer scale length means easier to fret at higher (above 10) frets. But, at the lower frets, it can be difficult fingering jazz chord for some people.

Under 25" scale length is mymy personal preference. 24.75 is my sweet spot. Easier fingerings chords in the middle of the ne k.
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  #23  
Old 11-09-2021, 10:20 AM
kayakman kayakman is offline
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Default Eastman

Year`s ago when Mandolin Bros was still open, the Eastman rep brought an archtop into the store not a bad archtop.I believe Stan became a dealer,don`t know for sure,as time passed the quality got better, nice archtop for the money. In the end I bought a Deluxe Campellone,kept that for a bit,sold it a bought a 1938 L5...
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  #24  
Old 11-09-2021, 11:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr. beaumont View Post
I would think a lot of people coming from a flat top would like the sounds of the Eastman better.
Or they might be put off by something in the sound that sounds too much and/or/but not enough like a flat top?

I've heard this before, but is it possible to be a bit more specific if not quantitative?

Is this a representative comparison, maybe?


Here, the x-braced sibling has this "ooh, ahh" effect when you first hear it after the other, but in the end I think it's all a bit too much, a super-stimulus or, to put it impolitely, as if there's a good added laddle of flavour enhancers (glutamates). The parallel-braced guitar's sound grows on you, and seems a lot more refined and versatile.
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  #25  
Old 11-09-2021, 01:58 PM
RLetson RLetson is offline
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This is the second time I've listened to the X/parallel blind test, and once again I preferred the parallel-braced guitar. On the other hand, I'd like to have a lot more information about the whole build process before I made general observations about the "sound" of either bracing pattern.

That's partly because I currently have two of each kind, and each one has qualities that cross over various build factors. I'm quite convinced that how the top is carved and tuned has as much to do with voicing as any of the other major factors (body size, bracing, scale length, materials).

I know how my Tom Crandall was built, because Tom's a long-time friend and described the process in some detail: even after the guitar was strung up and before it was finished, he continued to carve on the top from the outside, working toward the voice he wanted. The design approach was out of the Benedetto book, which was pretty much the only guide in the early 1990s, but the materials are unorthodox: redwood over walnut. The result is a 17-inch guitar that works acoustically for fingerstyle and chord-melody as well as swing-rhythm work--there's just a bit of almost resophonic honk when it's pushed hard.

My other X-braced archtop is an Eastman 805CE (from the period when the cutaway was Selmerish), and its voice is similar to the Crandall, though perhaps a tad less responsive to light attack. This might be a result of the 16-inch body, the conventional spruce/maple formula, or because even a hand-carved factory instrument isn't going to get the detailed voicing that Tom's guitar did.

My first archtop was a 1946 Epiphone Broadway that remains in near-original condition (only cosmetic maintenance). I don't take it out as much as I used to because the pickup lacks volume/tone controls and I don't want to have to wrangle the Baggs DI. Otherwise I really like its acoustic voice--perfect for classic swing but responsive enough for chord-melody--though it, like the Eastman, wants a bit of muscle to get it to speak its best. (And FWIW, for a while I also had a '45 L7, which would have been a keeper if I didn't also have the Broadway. I found myself always choosing the Epi to play out, so I sold the Gibson on--I'm told the young guy who bought it was very pleased with it.)

At the bottom of the pile is a Loar 600, which is adequate but not as refined as any of the others--a bit brash and nasal but not hard to control and quite decent plugged in thanks to an old DeArmond-style Sekova floating pickup.

My answer to "X or parallel bracing?" is the same as to most such questions: "It depends."
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  #26  
Old 11-09-2021, 02:05 PM
mr. beaumont mr. beaumont is offline
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I tend to think of X braced guitars--particularly those built in the "Benedetto" style, as sounding more "polite." I think they might actually be a bit more versatile than a parallel braced archtop with vintage voicing, like a Loar 6/700...But not all X braced guitars are the same...for example, an L7 sounds nothing like an Eastman...

But then you find a video of Julian Lage playing his 1920's L5, and everything I just generalized goes out the window...
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