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  #1  
Old 11-08-2015, 01:33 PM
lefty8 lefty8 is offline
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Default TRYING to like my Martin M-36

The title says it. I'm "trying" to like my M-36. This guitar came to me in late July, 2015, new. I had a set up down on it after tree weeks, much earlier than I would with a new guitar. I would ordinarily play it in more. But the tone and intonation just wasn't good. It got better after the set-up. Tried Elixir strings, which I like on my Taylors. Didn't like them on the Martin. Now I'm back to Martin Life Span SP, the ones recommended by Martin. They're just ok.
But honestly, I'm just not enjoying this guitar, still. It doesn't stay in tune easily. And if even slightly out, it's noticeable. It finger picks nicely. But it doesn't sound great strummed. I thought that the M size (OOOO) would do both well. That's what all the professional reviews indicated. I'm considering getting rid of it and buying a D-18. I'm torn with keeping it a couple of years and waiting for it to improve. But I'm fearful that it won't.
Any thoughts?
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  #2  
Old 11-08-2015, 01:41 PM
catdaddy catdaddy is offline
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It would seem that this guitar is just not the right one for you. You've done your due diligence with a set-up and different strings. If the tone and intonation aren't up to your standards then I think it's probably best to part ways with it and find a guitar that plays and sounds the way you prefer. Waiting for this guitar to improve doesn't sound like a realistic option to me.
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Old 11-08-2015, 01:44 PM
Von Beerhofen Von Beerhofen is offline
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It sounds to me as if you haven't really had a chance to compare that guitar prior to purchase. Fact is that not every guitar is great, nor are a few threads about it's greatness an indicator for success.

If you don't like it, move on, try another of the same series or try something different but if you can't play or compare it before you buy it, there'll be no guarantee that you'll like the next one, no matter what people type in guitar forums.

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Old 11-08-2015, 01:45 PM
chitz chitz is offline
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Agreed. Get the D-18.
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Old 11-08-2015, 01:54 PM
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Brucebubs Brucebubs is online now
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If you like that M (0000) body size then look at the Martin J-40.
It's the same body but with full dread 4 7/8" depth, might be just perfect for you.
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Old 11-08-2015, 01:59 PM
jdinco jdinco is offline
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I learned the hard way that if you don't like the sound of the guitar the first week you own it, there's a 99% chance you won't like it after another year. Move on....and try to buy from a dealer that gives you an approval period.
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Old 11-08-2015, 02:03 PM
ObiWanSymbian ObiWanSymbian is offline
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When I tried an M-36 it was very responsive when fingerpicked and... well slightly flat when flatpicked. Still I find her very ballanced accross all the techniques I can perform.
Maybe change your flatpick? I have observed that picks with sharp edges produce faltter sound, while the ones with rounded edges give a fuller sound.
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Old 11-08-2015, 02:40 PM
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Life's too short to play a guitar you don't like; however, I would suggest trying non-coated strings before giving up on it completely. It can make a night & day difference on some guitars, and is a cheap thing to try.
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  #9  
Old 11-08-2015, 04:14 PM
Br1ck Br1ck is offline
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I'm a big M36 fan, own an old one, but have played a few newer ones I did not like. I will never sell mine.
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Old 11-08-2015, 04:21 PM
Hoyt Hoyt is offline
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I'd try some non-coated strings. Maybe have someone else check it out. Once the strings stretch out, the guitar shouldn't go out of tune easily while playing, nor should you have intonation issues.

Those are nice rosewood guitars. I've found I prefer rosewood to mahogany back and sides.

Good luck.
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  #11  
Old 11-08-2015, 04:23 PM
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SFCRetired SFCRetired is offline
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I may be the odd man out but I have never played an OM style guitar that liked to be strummed. Except one. The Yamaha OM sizes, but they are deeper than the traditional OM size guitars. Or 000, or 0000 if you will. I call them all OM size because I just don't know any better.

I recently picked up a Guild GAD 30R that sounds great finger picked, but try to strum it and it barks back. Like a dog barking with a sore throat.

It's a shame you bought an expensive guitar you don't like and most likely never will. I know a guy who has a 2014 D 18 for sale what I would call cheap. I just bought his HD 28.
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Old 11-08-2015, 06:42 PM
Petty1818 Petty1818 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Br1ck View Post
I'm a big M36 fan, own an old one, but have played a few newer ones I did not like. I will never sell mine.
I actually find the newer M-36's to be very consistent in quality and tone. They have all sounded great and the only times where I was unimpressed, it had more to do with the strings than anything else. I really do think they are some of the best Martin guitars, they just don't get marketed in the right way.
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  #13  
Old 11-10-2015, 09:28 AM
Br1ck Br1ck is offline
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That is good to know. I don't seek them out in stores and would probably never play one that wasn't in the used section.

The fact they are not a deep body contributes to the comfort these guitars have to offer. They really are the ideal guitar for me. Really big sounding, but not as boomy as most RW dreads. I have never understood the relative unpopularity of the M 36.

But heck, what do I know.
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2014 Martin 00 15 12 fret custom
Pono OP 30 D parlor
Pono OP12-30
Pono MT uke
Goldtone Paul Beard squareneck resophonic
Fluke tenor ukulele
Boatload of home rolled telecasters

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  #14  
Old 11-10-2015, 10:29 AM
RustyAxe RustyAxe is offline
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You've only tried coated strings? Slap a set of D'Addario EJ-16's on that guitar. (There isn't a coated string made that I want to use ... and yes, I know I'm in a minority) Short of a broken tuning machine, there's no reason to think that going out of tune is the fault of the guitar. I'd be interested to know your restringing technique.
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  #15  
Old 11-10-2015, 10:34 AM
Earl49 Earl49 is offline
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Another vote for the J-40 here, if you can try one. It is a deeper version of the M36 or the M38. I find it easily capable of keeping up with D-28's when strummed at bluegrass jams, yet still sounds good fingerpicked with nails. My J-40 has been with me for 25 years now.

And definitely try several types of strings, not just brands. The voice of the guitar will really "pop" with some types.
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