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  #1  
Old 08-23-2013, 01:40 PM
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invguy921 invguy921 is offline
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Arrow My new travel companion by Journey Instruments

Well, anyone who has followed me for long knows I have owned a TON of guitars. In fact, I think I've bought and sold more than 60 over the past two years. I should call myself a small guitar store, huh? lol!! Certainly I am not a guitar store or dealer or employed by any of those, just a basic business guy who likes nice guitars.

I recently stumbled onto something that really caught my eye. It isn't like this concept is totally new as I think there is another company that does something similar, I just think these guys have perfected the design. It is a Travel guitar that really makes travel easy and sensible. I don't know about you, but the travel guitars that are out there are...can I say it...mostly under-performers...ie: sound bad, difficult to handle and manage, etc, etc.

Let me first say that I am in no way being compensated by the company of have and business affiliation with the company. I do know that the owner of the company is a member of AGF and by my standards appears to be solid stand up guy. The fact is that I thought all of my AGF friends would want to know about this...so, here ya go.

Enter the Journey "Overhead" Guitar....possibly the sweetest little traveling guitar a person could want!!

A BIG sounding guitar in a small transportable package. And if the guitar isn't cool enough, check out the carry bag for it...in a word...ingenious. It even has a built in under-saddle pick-up which sounds really great plugged in...lots of extra value at a very affordable price well under a grand!!



The Tone: Albeit my tastes are considerable spoiled by my current "stable" of some of the best guitars out there (McPherson, Bourgeois, etc), this little baby sounds really great. Don't get me wrong, you can't make a guitar that costs less than a grand sound like one that costs 6-7 grand, but it simply blows away every other travel guitar on the planet, and without a doubt is very satisfying to play. I love to play it in DADGAD. When you add all of the features of this guitar combined with the portability aspects, it is a winning combination. If they take this thing public, I'll be first in line to buy stock.

So, how do they do it? Check out these photos:

Q: How do they make a small, easy to play and handle guitar sound big?

A: Manzer wedge...note the bottom and front of the guitar is larger, yet the area where your arm goes over the guitar is smaller. More room inside, with no discomfort for the player.



Here's how the guitar becomes portable. That aluminum piece on the back is what keeps it together combined with some revolutionary engineering where the neck goes on. To take it apart, you simply un-screw that knob, and push the black button to release the neck.




Then the neck and guitar simply slide into the case.




The Case:

Plenty of space for the guitar...and lots of pockets for all kinds of stuff for the guitar and the traveler. I'm always the guy packing a laptop, a book or two, Golf magazines, snacks, etc. etc. This one case will safely house it all.

Check it out: Case and guitar are ready to carry on




Open front zipper compartment-see my Macbook Air peeking out?



Ready to pull out the Mac easily at the security stop without disturbing everything else



So, you'll have to search out a dealer if you want to know more. I would encourage all of you AGF folks to get one of these in your hands. They may be a bit hard to find as I know these are just hitting the market. The website indicates that they have a number of other models on the way including an all Carbon fiber model.

Here's the website for specs, videos, etc.


http://www.journeyinstruments.com/

Feel free to ask me questions if you want and i'll do my best to help!
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Last edited by invguy921; 08-23-2013 at 01:51 PM.
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  #2  
Old 08-23-2013, 02:01 PM
paulzoom paulzoom is offline
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I would be curious if someone has played both the Journey and the Voyage air to get a comparison.
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Old 08-23-2013, 02:29 PM
mc1 mc1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by invguy921 View Post
...
The Tone: Albeit my tastes are considerable spoiled by my current "stable" of some of the best guitars out there (McPherson, Bourgeois, etc), this little baby sounds really great. Don't get me wrong, you can't make a guitar that costs less than a grand sound like one that costs 6-7 grand, but it simply blows away every other travel guitar on the planet, and without a doubt is very satisfying to play. I love to play it in DADGAD. When you add all of the features of this guitar combined with the portability aspects, it is a winning combination. If they take this thing public, I'll be first in line to buy stock.
...
well, i haven't tried either, so take this for what it's worth, but i'd probably go for a brunner carbon fibre guitar if i could pick either one.

i did like seeing the pictures and the review of the journey instruments guitar. it looks pretty cool.
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  #4  
Old 08-23-2013, 02:31 PM
Ted @ LA Guitar Sales Ted @ LA Guitar Sales is offline
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Excellent review Mike!

Quote:
Originally Posted by paulzoom View Post
I would be curious if someone has played both the Journey and the Voyage air to get a comparison.
Sure thing, I've had an Overhead here to play with since January and had plenty of time to compare it to a number of guitars including the VA and to my ear it more than holds it own against the much larger VA with a much fuller voice than the size would indicate.

You can see an A/B comparison with the GS Mini here - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=013Lap-Gnhw and a few more with the Overhead on our YouTube page.
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  #5  
Old 08-23-2013, 02:59 PM
mchalebk mchalebk is offline
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A really important point about the Journey Overhead guitars is that the case is designed to meet the carry on limitations of major US airlines. They started with the dimensions, then worked backwards to create the case and guitar.

I'm not too worried about carrying my CA Cargo onto airplanes. I've done it a few times and it fits easily in the overhead bins, even on the smaller regional jets. However, it exceeds the listed carry on dimensions and the airlines would be within their rights to make me gate check it. Being carbon fiber, it would probably survive (even in the gig bag), but there's something to be said for the peace of mind knowing that your guitar case meets the airline requirements and you can definitely carry it on the plane.

I am very curious to read about the CF version they have in the works, which sounds like it will be available in the not too distant future.
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  #6  
Old 08-23-2013, 03:57 PM
DesertTwang DesertTwang is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paulzoom View Post
I would be curious if someone has played both the Journey and the Voyage air to get a comparison.
yep, me too. especially since I've heard a voyage air and the sound was pretty much like a regular dreadnaught. for 500 bucks, that's pretty hard to beat. the journey sure looks nice!
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Old 08-23-2013, 03:58 PM
Glennwillow Glennwillow is offline
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Hi Mike,

Very helpful review! This looks like a real class act. Good for Journey Guitars! I value Ted's comments also as someone who has had a chance to compare.

Very interesting!

- Glenn
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  #8  
Old 08-23-2013, 04:23 PM
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invguy921 invguy921 is offline
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Hey guys, thanks for the comments and thanks to Ted for providing some very useful info! I initially knew the guitar would be GREAT for travel, and had thought I would enjoy the portability of taking to the office and on picnics etc. Then, just when I thought I had considered all of the options, this one showed up

Because it is smaller, it's the perfect size and she absolutely LOVES it!! It's become her "go-to" guitar


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Last edited by invguy921; 08-24-2013 at 09:19 PM.
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  #9  
Old 08-26-2013, 09:11 AM
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robailey robailey is offline
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Default Enjoyed the Journey Instruments Overhead travel guitar review

Mike, thanks for the stellar review! Journey has just joined the forum as a sponsor, but since this review was so great I'll chime in on my private account until we're setup. I'm humbled that a guy that plays the kinds of guitars I see in your signature enjoys the Overhead! We've gotten great responses from our dealers and just about every guitarist that demos them.

I've been traveling in Asia for holiday for the past 3 weeks and had 4-5 offers at resorts from guys to literally buy the guitar off my back after they heard me play it - and I'm not good enough for it to be due to my playing.

I know there has been a lot of discussion on the forum on the size relative to other brands and it was good to hear your feedback. I know when I was island hopping, traveling through crowded markets in Thailand and Hong Kong or flying smaller planes, I was really happy with the size/volume/feature set - especially in situations like this:



I know MacNichol did some great videos recently that captured the tone pretty accurately, but your pictures are brilliant.

Thanks again for the wonderful review, Mike!

Rob
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Old 08-26-2013, 11:25 AM
paulzoom paulzoom is offline
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Personally, I have never seen the need for fold up guitars. I have traveled with both a parlor and OM and since the overhead storage bins are long and narrow they have always fit for me as long as I put it in a gig bag. That includes smaller regional jets.
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Old 08-26-2013, 12:36 PM
handers handers is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mc1 View Post
well, i haven't tried either, so take this for what it's worth, but i'd probably go for a brunner carbon fibre guitar if i could pick either one.

i did like seeing the pictures and the review of the journey instruments guitar. it looks pretty cool.
I haven't played a Brunner but the only A/B comparison I could find with a Voyage Air favored the VA. This would be a really interesting shootout:

top of the line VA vs Brunner vs Journey

There is certainly room in the industry for all three. But I'd love to see how they compare. Acoustic Guitar Magazine?? Listening?

hans
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1992 Froggy Bottom F (19th cent. german/koa)
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Old 08-26-2013, 12:40 PM
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invguy921 invguy921 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paulzoom View Post
Personally, I have never seen the need for fold up guitars. I have traveled with both a parlor and OM and since the overhead storage bins are long and narrow they have always fit for me as long as I put it in a gig bag. That includes smaller regional jets.
Wow, good for you...but not my experience. In recent years I've never had anything but "grief" when it comes to traveling with a guitar. Maybe it was the airline I frequent, or the number of people on the plane, or...who knows...?? All I know now is it won't be a future issue for me regardless of the plane, airline, or traffic count. I've always thought of a guitar as an item I would love to have with me but not necessarily essential to my travel experience since I don't make my living with it. With this little "Overhead", it can come along every time as part of my normal 'gear'. One bag to carry that get's every thing I need on-board in one tidy package...I call that ingenious . Did I mention the back-pack part of this? I think i forgot to mention that the bag ALSO has shoulder straps built in... keeps one hand free at the baggage counter for my garment bag and my ESSENTIAL Golf club travel case

I think they thought of everything! Now if I could only fit my Golf clubs in this little bag also lol
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Old 08-26-2013, 12:40 PM
handers handers is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paulzoom View Post
Personally, I have never seen the need for fold up guitars. I have traveled with both a parlor and OM and since the overhead storage bins are long and narrow they have always fit for me as long as I put it in a gig bag. That includes smaller regional jets.
And if the crew requires you to gate check the guitar? In a gig bag? I bought a Voyage Air because I didn't want to risk damage or loss of my other guitars. Also, my Froggy H12c in a decent case is not light and the VA guitar in a backpack case is so convenient. It is a decent real guitar, unlike most of the travel guitars out there.

hans
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1971 Papazian (swiss spruce/braz RW)
1987 Lowden L32p (sitka/ind RW)
1992 Froggy Bottom F (19th cent. german/koa)
2000 Froggy Bottom H12c (adir/ind RW)
2010 Voyage-Air VAOM-2C

http://www.soundclick.com/hanstunes (recorded on Froggy H12c)
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Old 08-26-2013, 01:04 PM
Tony Burns Tony Burns is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robailey View Post
Mike, thanks for the stellar review! Journey has just joined the forum as a sponsor, but since this review was so great I'll chime in on my private account until we're setup. I'm humbled that a guy that plays the kinds of guitars I see in your signature enjoys the Overhead! We've gotten great responses from our dealers and just about every guitarist that demos them.

I've been traveling in Asia for holiday for the past 3 weeks and had 4-5 offers at resorts from guys to literally buy the guitar off my back after they heard me play it - and I'm not good enough for it to be due to my playing.

I know there has been a lot of discussion on the forum on the size relative to other brands and it was good to hear your feedback. I know when I was island hopping, traveling through crowded markets in Thailand and Hong Kong or flying smaller planes, I was really happy with the size/volume/feature set - especially in situations like this:



I know MacNichol did some great videos recently that captured the tone pretty accurately, but your pictures are brilliant.

Thanks again for the wonderful review, Mike!

Rob
Your instruments look stellar ! wish we had a Dealer in Western NY , been looking for something like this -one of my concerns is , that im wondering if a
sturdier case is available , maybe something with hard sides -so that when others throw stuff in the onboard comparments that the instrument wont get damaged --ive run into some very inconsiderate people who are hard on other peoples stuff -- making stuff bullet proof is possibly the best solution of dealing with rough handling --Thanks for being a sponsor !
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Old 08-26-2013, 05:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Burns View Post
Your instruments look stellar ! wish we had a Dealer in Western NY , been looking for something like this -one of my concerns is , that im wondering if a
sturdier case is available , maybe something with hard sides -so that when others throw stuff in the onboard comparments that the instrument wont get damaged --ive run into some very inconsiderate people who are hard on other peoples stuff -- making stuff bullet proof is possibly the best solution of dealing with rough handling --Thanks for being a sponsor !
For me, this is where the 100% carbon fiber version will especially shine. No major concern having a soft or hard shell case.

Plus, even for the wood versions, the size of the packed guitar is big enough that I doubt that anyone will have much weight that they can throw on top of it. The space left in the luggage compartment will be quite thin. Even a bag full of lead will have it's weight spread out over enough surface area that there shouldn't be cracking concerns.

Also, anything else that's extremely sharp shouldn't be allowed as carry on.
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