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Old 04-13-2012, 11:05 PM   #1
samjbow
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Affordable acoustic baritone guitars?

Lately I've been tuning my starter Yamaha acoustic down to B standard tuning and really enjoying the mellow tones I've been getting out of it. I confess I am mainly an electric player and don't use my acoustic that often, and because of that I'm not terribly knowledgeable about acoustic brands.
Anyway, the major problem with tuning my acoustic down to B standard is of course the horrid fret buzz that accompanies such slack strings.
With that in mind, I've been looking for an upgrade from my Yamaha to something a little darker, with a baritone in mind. I haven't seriously determined a price range yet, but I doubt I would want to go over $800. Of course this presents a challenge because I do not believe many (if any) guitar manufacturers produce acoustic baritones within that price range, which is why I turn to you, UG, to lend me your knowledge.
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Old 04-14-2012, 12:21 AM   #2
Captaincranky
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Have you upped the gauge of string set you're using to mediums or heavy?

A quick Google search netted this jewel at American Musical: http://www.americanmusical.com/Item--i-ALV-ABT60-LIST

If you'd prefer to shop at Musician's Friend same thing: http://www.musiciansfriend.com/bass...h78608000001000

There does seem to be a huge gap in the price point structure, as the next step up is about three grand! (Taylor and Martin USA).

With that said, I'm certain you'd need a really discerning ear to hear the Taylor or Martin as being "ten times better", and you did say you were just goofing around. So, the Alvarez might be ideal. And, it seems to be the only game in town with a low minimum bid table, so to speak.

Last edited by Captaincranky : 04-14-2012 at 01:47 AM.
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:01 AM   #3
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:06 AM   #4
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I'm just gonna say, I think the Ovation Elites and the Deans can be safely ignored. Add the Luna "Diana" (pink) to the must avoid list.

(I saw the O baritone the other day, forget exactly where. But, it didn't show up on a search at M'sF).

BTW, how exactly are you supposed to feel comfortable, dealing with people who post shit like, "returns accepted within 3 days"?

Last edited by Captaincranky : 04-14-2012 at 02:13 AM.
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:23 AM   #5
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Agreed about the Dean* & Luna, but not the Ovation- I happen to like Ovations, though.








* I own 2 Dean electrics, but I don't care for their acoustics.
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Last edited by dannyalcatraz : 04-14-2012 at 02:35 AM.
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:32 AM   #6
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A baritone is all about bottom end. IDK if that's Ovation's strongest attribute. It's a mid depth bowl, so definitely a plug me in for best results. (But then, aren't all AE guitars like that).

Methinks you might get more bass out of a "woodie", not entirely sure though. Just a guess really, to move the conversation forward.

Last edited by Captaincranky : 04-14-2012 at 02:38 AM.
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:41 AM   #7
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Well, can't say yes or no- I own a standard sized elite (full bowl, not medium or shallow) that I have tuned to Robert Fripp's* NST; CGDAEG. It does pretty well hitting those low notes. However, in all fairness, I don't own another acoustic tuned that way, nor any baritones...yet.

I be surprised if the baritone Ovis come any way except full bowl depth. Mid bowl, maybe.

If I had my pick of the ones on that page, though, I'd go after that Tacoma. I played one of those back in the 1990s and fell in love. Those are suh-weet guitars.

(BTW, Cap, there's a luthier by the name of Jon Kammerer who is in the Chicago area who, among his other guitars, makes a fantastic headless acoustic bass. I'm talking to him now about doing a baritone based on the same body.)






* Ovations, FWIW, are the standard guitar for Fripp's League of Crafty Guitar members/students.
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Last edited by dannyalcatraz : 04-14-2012 at 02:52 AM.
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Old 04-14-2012, 03:14 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dannyalcatraz
I be surprised if the baritone Ovis come any way except full bowl depth. Mid bowl, maybe.
The Elites on your Ebay page are claiming mid bowl. You're talking about Ovation USA, yes..?
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Old 04-14-2012, 03:17 AM   #9
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Perhaps- I haven't seen any of their baris up close, and I didn't look too closely at any of the entries. Not the biggest fan of eBay.
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Old 04-14-2012, 03:42 AM   #10
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That Alvarez I linked, is acoustic only. Strike one. It won't even be available (@MF) until May 15. or 1st week of June. (Could that be strike 2)?

Actually the Ovation may be the best route. I have it at Amazon, and I'm pretty sure it's the same guitar being sold at 3 different prices. Have a look:
http://www.amazon.com/OVATION-BARIT...pd_sim_sbs_MI_1

http://www.amazon.com/Ovation-DS778...pd_sim_sbs_MI_2
\
http://www.amazon.com/Ovation-Elite...pd_sim_sbs_MI_3
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Old 04-14-2012, 03:57 AM   #11
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Are you playing acoustic death metal ?
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:01 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by francesco18
Are you playing acoustic death metal ?

Not at the moment....
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:05 AM   #13
dannyalcatraz
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Nothing wrong with an all-black guitar.
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Old 04-14-2012, 09:39 AM   #14
samjbow
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Thanks for the help guys, I'm actually shocked to find a guitar as affordably priced as that Alvarez. I'm plenty patient when it comes to guitars, and that Alvarez might do the trick seeing as I'm also saving for a new electric (which doesn't come out til June... see, I am patient )
That Ovation is quite handsome, but the Alvarez definately has that more traditional acoustic appearance. As I said in my original post I'm not very knowledgable about acoustic brands, could you vouch for the quality of either brand?
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Old 04-14-2012, 09:40 AM   #15
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the Ovation D778 is a fantastic D scale guitar. good deep end while still a little bright. not sure about the newer d2011tx's, i havent played one. if your patient you can get the d778 in natural or red. i'm having my gray one refinished( i'll post pics when i get it back- another plus for the O's... personalization)
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Old 04-14-2012, 11:19 AM   #16
dannyalcatraz
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My very first guitar was a cheap Alvarez starter acoustic. It had a good sound, while it lasted.

While I havent bought an Alvarez since then, I have often included them on my shopping list- some of their guitars (like their Yairis) are quite good.
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Last edited by dannyalcatraz : 04-14-2012 at 11:22 AM.
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Old 04-14-2012, 11:27 AM   #17
samjbow
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Thanks for the input everyone. Does anyone know of any Alvarez dealers in Southern Ontario? I'm not familiar with any.
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Old 04-14-2012, 07:42 PM   #18
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Just check at Musician's Friend and the other big American dealers. Some brands are shippable to Canada. They have little icons next to the product price to tell you what can go where.

The Alvarez is shippable worldwide @ M'sF

Yamaha isn't shippable outside the USA, and I suspect that's because of their distributors being granted sovereign territories. (Just some speculative back story).

Quote:
Originally Posted by dannyalcatraz
Nothing wrong with an all-black guitar.
I had a black Les Paul copy. Loved it! Girlfriend at the time, hated it. Although, there were probably several reasons why that would be understandable.

All that aside, me gotz 2 right now, and I thinks they're purty....!

Last edited by Captaincranky : 04-14-2012 at 07:48 PM.
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Old 04-14-2012, 09:10 PM   #19
dannyalcatraz
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Something that surprised me as I tried to help- none of Godin's acoustic lines seems to include a baritone. Given that the TS is in the Great White North, I figured I'd help him buy locally- with quality & affordability- but no luck.
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Old 04-15-2012, 09:22 AM   #20
samjbow
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dannyalcatraz
Something that surprised me as I tried to help- none of Godin's acoustic lines seems to include a baritone. Given that the TS is in the Great White North, I figured I'd help him buy locally- with quality & affordability- but no luck.


I appreciate the effort, Godin are definitely pretty sweet! The quality for the dollar really is staggering.
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