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Old 01-21-2021, 02:09 PM
eljay eljay is offline
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Default Yamaha L56 series comparison

I'm fortunate to have the three Yammies pictured here, l-r, LJ56, LL56, LS56. This is also the order in which I purchased them. They're my bass boat! I think I've seen a description of Yamaha guitars as having a "modern" sound. To me, the Yamaha sound is best described as magnificent! For certain, my opinion of rosewood has taken a decided turn for the better resulting from these guys. (None sounds like the record on the intro to Tequila Sunrise but, to be sure, of all the acoustics I've played only my J-35 nails that perfectly. Even J-45s don't measure up, but I digress.)

For those interested, here are my impressions of each.

LJ56: Awesome tone, loud and rich. I was attracted to the LJ because I like Gibson jumbos and the shape of the LJ is reminiscent of them. Indeed, I think this is what inspired the LJ nomenclature.

LL56: Just a cannon! Yamaha describes the LL as the loudest of the three 56 offerings and that's my experience without a doubt. Same pure tone as has the LJ. Would have preferred the top pieces to have been better matched on the LL but many guitars, including high enders, exhibit this characteristic so I'll just have to manage, somehow.

LS56: I bought this one for fingerstyle because it's the smallest of the Ls. However, the photo shows that this guitar is not that much smaller than the LL. This is not an illusion. Looking at the trio on my couch I observed that LS really is not that much smaller than the LL. This explains why, when strummed, the LS gives away very little to the other guys. I was surprised at this. Indeed, the LS has none of the "small guitar" tone I've experienced with a Martin 00 and a couple of Gibson LGs.

All three are awesome guitars! It would be interesting to play their "36" counterparts. I've not played any. Might try to do this at such time as I get to Sweetwater again.

The LJ and LL are sufficiently similar that one of them will be for sale before long. I'm tending toward keeping the LJ since Yamaha no longer sells them in North America. Could be a "game-day" decision, though.
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Last edited by eljay; 01-21-2021 at 04:16 PM.
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Old 01-21-2021, 02:29 PM
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Peter Z Peter Z is offline
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eljay,
this is a truly impressive trio! Others could build a house from whot those three guitars cost here in Austria! ��
I didn’t even find a LL16 to lay my hands on.
I think, you can’t rip this family apart ans sell one of the brothers ... or sisters.
Enjoy them as good and long as you can.
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Old 01-21-2021, 02:31 PM
Rogerblair Rogerblair is offline
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Thanks for the post. As a recent Yamaha fan (FS5, FS820) Iím discovering a whole new spectrum of sound, after more than 50 years playing. Iím really enjoying my new discovery.

Your flock is gorgeous.

Rb
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Old 01-21-2021, 02:57 PM
Dru Edwards Dru Edwards is offline
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What an amazing Trinity! I don't think I'll ever have a chance to play a 56 series, or 36, or even 26 series but they're all high on my list.

It's going to be a tough decision on which to sell. Are you planning on replacing it with something else?
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Old 01-21-2021, 03:46 PM
Dbone Dbone is offline
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Yeah, first world problems for sure

My LL56 is similar in terms of runout on the top, perhaps slightly less pronounced than whatís on yours, but similar. There was actually a thread on here recently that did a poll on whether folks mind runout. I personally happen to be in the camp that doesnít mind a little runout. I actually find it can give a top some interest in some cases, and youíre right about it be present on many high end guitars. Iíve seen $30k guitars with it. Itís one of those things...Different strokes for different folks...

At one point I was looking to add a smaller guitar to my stable. I actually considered buying an LS56, but at the time I came to the conclusion that you seem to be arriving at...That they would be similar, especially in design and look. For that reason I decided to hold out and go with a different brand for an OM later...Perhaps after I lick my wounds from an inbound electric guitar purchase I have coming in over the next couple months...I think I will eventually pick up a Boucher OM. Very good guitars, and it will add a little diversity.

Having said all this, I really would like to have your problems...lol
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Old 01-21-2021, 04:10 PM
nitram nitram is offline
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The more I read and hear about Yamaha guitars the more I feel that they don't get the recognition that other brands receive.I've been wanting to try them out for myself, but here in Canada good luck finding a shop with any stock. They're happy to order one in for you but you have to buy it first. What a deal!
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Old 01-21-2021, 04:36 PM
Rosette Rosette is offline
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These are beautiful guitars. Someone here (was it you, OP?) posted a sound clip of one of these 56 models a few months back and I was blown away by the tone.

If I ever win the lottery...
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Old 01-21-2021, 05:09 PM
Dbone Dbone is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosette View Post
These are beautiful guitars. Someone here (was it you, OP?) posted a sound clip of one of these 56 models a few months back and I was blown away by the tone.

If I ever win the lottery...
Are you referring to this JP Cormier vid? ó>

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r3ZFZ8n2WoI
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Old 01-21-2021, 07:03 PM
L20A L20A is offline
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Enjoy your Bass Boat.
I like it.
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Old 01-22-2021, 05:28 AM
Rpt50 Rpt50 is offline
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Wow. Just Wow...

You sir, have impeccable guitar taste.
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Old 01-22-2021, 06:11 AM
vld vld is offline
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This is what I created when deciding the size
As eljay mentions, LS is surprisingly large compared with LL or LJ...

LJ vs LS

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Old 01-22-2021, 06:49 AM
27R 27R is offline
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Stunning trio of instruments. Huge fan of the L-series here, I think they are amongst the finest acoustic guitars money can buy for any price. Well done!
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Old 01-22-2021, 07:20 AM
AndrewG AndrewG is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitram View Post
The more I read and hear about Yamaha guitars the more I feel that they don't get the recognition that other brands receive.I've been wanting to try them out for myself, but here in Canada good luck finding a shop with any stock. They're happy to order one in for you but you have to buy it first. What a deal!
You're right; the first thought that comes to mind when Yamaha is mentioned with many people is outboard motors, motor bikes and 'entry level' guitars. Yamaha's 'problem', if you can call it that, is the almost invisible marketing effort for the L-series, ensuring that few people get to experience them or even know they exist. I have owned a few (LL6, LL16, LL16D, LL26, LJ6 and several FG models), and none have failed to impress.
If you have the resources you can buy a custom-built LL86 for around £12,000 (US$16,000):
https://reverb.com/uk/item/11953724-yamaha-ll86-custom
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Old 01-22-2021, 07:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrewG View Post
You're right; the first thought that comes to mind when Yamaha is mentioned with many people is outboard motors, motor bikes and 'entry level' guitars. Yamaha's 'problem', if you can call it that, is the almost invisible marketing effort for the L-series, ensuring that few people get to experience them or even know they exist. I have owned a few (LL6, LL16, LL16D, LL26, LJ6 and several FG models), and none have failed to impress.
If you have the resources you can buy a custom-built LL86 for around £12,000:
https://reverb.com/uk/item/11953724-yamaha-ll86-custom
I've long suspected and mentioned elsewhere that they just didn't need to market them like they do their other products because they make so comparatively few, and they sell everything they make. Those who know, know.

Would be interesting to know the backstory of that 86. Apparently they only made them for artists & VIPs - mere mortals cannot order them.
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Old 01-22-2021, 09:56 AM
eljay eljay is offline
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The LJ56 is for sale. Will list later today.
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