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Which Gibson acoustic

RU Experienced

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Feb 25, 2020
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All of my acoustics are Martin (nice 000s and 00s), and I'm ready to try a Gibson. A different sound can be inspiring but don't really know too much about the Gibson offerings and how they differ. Looked on the Gibson website but prefer learning the ideas of players. Not looking for bling. I like nice sounding utilitarian guitars. Maybe spend up to about 3K. I like playing both strumming and fiingerstyle rock, folk, country, % blues.

Cheers and thank you!
 

DutchRay

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Mar 15, 2015
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I hardly play acoustic but I've always loved the sound (and look) of the J-200's, nicely balanced and not as boomy as a dreadnought guitar.
 
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KoP

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Jul 11, 2016
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I’m a sucker for the round shoulders.

I’d probably get the LG-2 out of their modern offerings. I have a hard time playing dreadnaughts these days because I’m short and have kind of shorter arms. lol The corner digs into my strumming forearm and it hurts my shoulder after a while. Too many mountain bike crashes have really messed me up.
 

Dilver

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Unless you’re a bluegrasser, get a J-45. Either 50s, 60s or Standard, or a Southern Jumbo, depending on your neck, aesthetic and budget preferences. I played a Martin 00018 and an OM28V pretty much exclusively for years. While I still love my small bodied Martins, the deep, dry, thumpy Gibson J-45 tone is highly addictive and I find myself reaching for it all the time now. These guitars are so good and look amazing. 9D80D7D7-6538-4D1F-B990-E5DCA06E06F0.jpeg
 

Wilko

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J-45 is the utility guiatr without bling, but it's too dark and boomy for what you are describing.

If they did an L-G or vintage style j-185 I'd recommend those. My fave Gibson is the CF-100. Prolly way more expensive if they even make one. It was the first Gibson flat top to have a cutaway.

 

RU Experienced

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Dliver, that's good information and what I was looking for since you're coming from the same place with your Martins. Can you elaborate a little more on the J45 vs Southern Jumbo? Cosmetically, looks to be fret markers and a bound neck. Anything else?
 

Dilver

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Dliver, that's good information and what I was looking for since you're coming from the same place with your Martins. Can you elaborate a little more on the J45 vs Southern Jumbo? Cosmetically, looks to be fret markers and a bound neck. Anything else?
Southern Jumbo is structurally the same as a J45, just with more bling. In addition to the fret markers and neck binding, the body binding is also cosmetically a little fancier.

Since it didn’t sound like you were getting rid of your small bodied Martins, I think you’d enjoy having a J45 as the bigger body provides a deeper, fuller growl than a 000 or 00 body can produce, and the short scale will seem instantly familiar to you. Martins tend to sound very ”present” for lack of a better term. Not bright and jangly like a Taylor, but kind of mid forward. Gibson acoustics, especially a J45 are kind of mid scooped. Some people say the tone is really well suited for guitarists who sing as it leaves space for the vocalist. I find this to be very true and describe it as being a very “personal” guitar - the sound kind of envelops you as you’re playing it.

Best thing to do is go play one (even if you don’t plan on buying from that particular store) just to familiarize yourself with the sound and feel. Or, if you’re not near a music store buy from an online retailer who’ll let you return within 30 days. Like any guitar, there is some variance in how they sound. Check out this vid :
 
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Wilko

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If you are digging the jumbo Gibson acoustic J-45/southern jumbo, look into advanced jumbo too. Different top bracing gives a different voice.
 

RU Experienced

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If you are digging the jumbo Gibson acoustic J-45/southern jumbo, look into advanced jumbo too. Different top bracing gives a different voice.
Yep, and I see that one is rosewood which I think I'll pass on for this time. Sorta narrowing it down to 45, SJ, or 185. I'll probably buy used so that may end up narrowing the avaiablilty.
 

Wilko

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Can't go wrong with J-45.

If you stumble across a J-160E those are fun. The 60s versions like the Beatles had were laminated tops. The 52-54 were solid tops. The reissues are solid tops and you get two extra frets clear of the body.

For 185, I love the Everly version! well, star inlays and pinless bridge are nice. The two big guards can't be good for the sound.
 

RU Experienced

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Feb 25, 2020
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Can't go wrong with J-45.

If you stumble across a J-160E those are fun. The 60s versions like the Beatles had were laminated tops. The 52-54 were solid tops. The reissues are solid tops and you get two extra frets clear of the body.

For 185, I love the Everly version! well, star inlays and pinless bridge are nice. The two big guards can't be good for the sound.
Ha, just saw your handle Wilko. My Martin 00 is a 00 DB (deep body) "Jeff Tweedy" model. Mahagony back, sides, and top. Long scale.
 

Wilko

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Ha, just saw your handle Wilko. My Martin 00 is a 00 DB (deep body) "Jeff Tweedy" model. Mahagony back, sides, and top. Long scale.
well, my handle comes from my name Wilkins added to my first wife's name "Ko". I do enjoy Wilco (with a "c") that reminds me, I have Jeff Tweedy's book to read.
 

Elmore

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Jul 10, 2003
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J-45 all day long. I bought this new in 2022. It was around $3K including taxes. Just wow. The tone is really something. C38172CF-7644-4B11-B95A-FF11DADF0A1F.jpeg
 

RU Experienced

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Feb 25, 2020
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Yea, the J45 is looking like a good compliment to my smaller bodied Martins. Standard vs 50s? Fairly subtle differences: neck thickness maybe the most significant, then there's some minor cosmetic differences. Am I missing anything?

go Dawgs
 

Phil 52

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Sep 7, 2005
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Gibson Songwriter.
I like that wider width at the nut 1.725"
Maybe there are other Gibbies with the same width I don't know about.
 
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