#1
I was wondering, is it possible to buy an acoustic guitar, for instance an epiphone hummingbird, which is a reasonably guitar and bring it to the store and let it make into a good guitar?

Changing strings to martin might be one thing, but what else can you do do improve sound/tuning/playability or even looks?
#2
my cousin manny can help you wit dat he lower it, put een a tuck n roll interior. airbrush a peecture of my seester jorge( before she gained the other 120 lbs, or after eef thats you wish , with or without the beard), and install tween turbos!!!!
seriously, a simple setup by a GOOD shop will do wonders for it. again, the ter setup can be a very generic term, like a car tune up, different models require different things. a good qualified shop should know the little nuances of your axe to get the most out of it.
or were you thinking of bringing it to a store and trading it in for a Gibbie h-bird? that would make it sound better( a bit more expensive that way though).
#3
what else can you do do improve sound/tuning/playability or even looks?


For sound, the only cost effective things you can do are:

- Proper set up
- New strings
- New saddle/nut

Looks are more subjective but, once again, there are only limited things you can do which are cost effective

- Change pick guard
- Change machine heads
- Change bridge pins
#4
K thanks, what would give better tuning? New tuners, nut, bridge and strings?
Last edited by Knackworst1 at Sep 16, 2012,
#5
By 'better tuning' do you mean more stable? As in the guitar will take longer to go out of tune?
#8
Even cheap tuners are remarkably stable... I use really cheap Chinese open-gear tuners on all my cigar-box guitars and they hold tune just fine, thanks.
More likely causes of "not staying in tune" are that the strings were poorly applied to the tuners to begin with, friction in the nut slots (a little graphite helps) and ratty, worn-out strings.

I've got a pile of different instruments, and even if they sit for weeks, they are rarely more than a few cents out of tune.
Learn to string the guitar properly, keep good strings on it, and you'll have minimal worries.
#11
i've replaced a number of cheap tuners because they slipped or weren't smooth enough to tune easily. i generally replace them with these
http://www.stewmac.com/shop/Tuners/Guitar,_solid_peghead_tuners/Economy_Tuners.html
which are surprisingly good quality for the price.

if you mean you're having intonation problems - which some people think are tuning problems - you can have pretty much any guitar intonated. i've seen prices for this vary from $25 to over $100, depending on the tech/luthier's prices.
Quote by Skeet UK
I just looked in my Oxford English Dictionary and under "Acoustic Guitar", there was your Avatar and an email address!
#12
Quote by Knackworst1
So a good setup and some good strings will do for a simple epiphone hummingbird?

Yes. Most of the time, people say 'cheap guitars are hard to play' due to the fact that they were never properly set up.

A proper set up will make the guitar play nicely. Sring type is a big factor as well - light gauge vsmedium gauge, phosphor bronze vs 80/20 will bring a very different tone to the table.

Changing the tuners is not necessary unless you find the guitar goes out of tune easily or have slipping points (it is quite common on cheap guitars).

The saddle could be worth changing and in that guitar. I'd move from the stock plastic one to a TUSQ one. This change isn't necessary, nor is it a drastic change, but you may want to explore that option.

Nut is rarely worth changing if you don't have tuning problems, or a broken nut, as is only affects the open strings, I'd say this is the last thing you would want to consider switching.
Hydroxic acid, kills thousands of people every year. Studies have shown lakes and rivers all over North America contain high levels hydroxic acid. Currently governments have taken no action against this life threatening chemical.
#13
Thanks for the info, does chanin the saddle improve the sound? I once read that but i doubt it will vhange the sound...
#14
ah, changing the saddle and nut can improve the tone - and while changing the saddle, one can also have the guitar intonated properly, which is always a plus. but what has the biggest impact in tone will be the strings. and changing the strings to different materials/types will have a huge impact. DR rare phosphor bronze strings can add brilliance to a dull guitar and can lose boom in a muddy guitar without changing the tone so it's too bright or thin. changing to martin silk & steels (better sounding to me than d'addario silk & steels) especially helped some of my cheapest beaters and the guitars i felt were too bright. changing yamahas (that come with their own meh strings) to good ol' d'addario pb's can help right off the bat. then 80/20's seem brighter to me, and different gauges of the same strings can have different qualities, as well.
Quote by Skeet UK
I just looked in my Oxford English Dictionary and under "Acoustic Guitar", there was your Avatar and an email address!
#15
Interesting, and elkxir, are they an good? They are 4 times as expensive as the XL strings (ones I use for my MIJ fender tele)
#16
Quote by Knackworst1
Interesting, and elkxir, are they an good? They are 4 times as expensive as the XL strings (ones I use for my MIJ fender tele)

Never played them, but review are always meh. IIRC the nanoweb technology they made up is a clear coating, much like cleartones, to make strings last longer. Well, the issue with that is they end up sounding dead out of the box.

My personal preference are Martin Bluegrass. They are a hybrid of gauges to big a nice bass and an easy cutting treble. I would suggest looking at D'addarios first off, their strings are great and offer many types.

Patti's explanations are spot on. The first thing to look at in my mind is PB vs 80/20. 80/20 are much brighter and they don't suit every guitar or players ear.
Hydroxic acid, kills thousands of people every year. Studies have shown lakes and rivers all over North America contain high levels hydroxic acid. Currently governments have taken no action against this life threatening chemical.
#17
Quote by Knackworst1
Interesting, and elkxir, are they an good? They are 4 times as expensive as the XL strings (ones I use for my MIJ fender tele)



4 times the cost and last 6 times longer.
I first started using elixers about 10 years ago, and have bought nothing else since.


as for thread, i am going to disagree as far as improving a cheap guitar.
I dont think you can,, at least cost effectivly, ,make changes that are really worth the trouble.
The money and time spent trying could be used better on your original purchase. IMO

Kinda like buying a cheap car, putting expensive tires, new paint, etc,,,,,its still a cheap car.

90% of that sound we all love comes from the wood and craftsmanship.

cheers, and let us know if you do some experimenting, interesting thought.
Mr Deetag
THE ONE AND ONLY
My friends:
Marco,thebassmaster,angie-rose morbid death,Bubonic
turinbrakes.dace
DRK HRSE & Leno
ahallicks.wahappen...geesh!
#18
Well, I know its better to spend the money on the guitar instead of improvements, but youll never find a guitar as good looking as an epiphone hummingbird/ej200 unlessyou buy the gibson which is 10 times the cost... I know it's wrong to judge a guitar by looks, but I mainly play electric, so for an acoustic guitar looks is a big thing to me...
#19
Quote by Knackworst1
Well, I know its better to spend the money on the guitar instead of improvements, but youll never find a guitar as good looking as an epiphone hummingbird/ej200 unlessyou buy the gibson which is 10 times the cost... I know it's wrong to judge a guitar by looks, but I mainly play electric, so for an acoustic guitar looks is a big thing to me...


funny,,,my "babe" is an old Martin, I paid over 2 grand for it, and it looks like hell,,,,but what a sound.

I have many times thought about giving it a face lift,,,but it sure has character,,,lol

I know thats not what your talking about, in terms of looks, but I thought I would mention it.

The more I think about it, looks should really mean nothing I guess?
Then again, we are a visual species for sure.
lol
Mr Deetag
THE ONE AND ONLY
My friends:
Marco,thebassmaster,angie-rose morbid death,Bubonic
turinbrakes.dace
DRK HRSE & Leno
ahallicks.wahappen...geesh!
Last edited by mrdeetag at Sep 16, 2012,
#20
lol,,,,although, I have always liked gold tuners.
=-)
Mr Deetag
THE ONE AND ONLY
My friends:
Marco,thebassmaster,angie-rose morbid death,Bubonic
turinbrakes.dace
DRK HRSE & Leno
ahallicks.wahappen...geesh!
#21
Well, I find the typical guitar look so boring, the yellow wood with a pure black pickguard, it always relinds me of a handsome douche who plays silly songs o impress girls... However martins don't look that cheap to me, they're different, but for the price category Im in I have to choose between cheap epiphone models(which my local music store keeper told me is rubbish) greg bennett d8 ( he told me it was way better than epi) ( it looks good imo, but has a cedar top :/) ibanez models and fenders ( both look not so good to me)
#22
Quote by Knackworst1
Well, I find the typical guitar look so boring, the yellow wood with a pure black pickguard, it always relinds me of a handsome douche who plays silly songs o impress girls... However martins don't look that cheap to me, they're different, but for the price category Im in I have to choose between cheap epiphone models(which my local music store keeper told me is rubbish) greg bennett d8 ( he told me it was way better than epi) ( it looks good imo, but has a cedar top :/) ibanez models and fenders ( both look not so good to me)


lmao,,,too funny,,the handsome douche,,,,

My Martin is a 1980 d25 k,,,,look it up, tell me your thoughts?
Curious

Maybe a older used guitar is more your style?
Mr Deetag
THE ONE AND ONLY
My friends:
Marco,thebassmaster,angie-rose morbid death,Bubonic
turinbrakes.dace
DRK HRSE & Leno
ahallicks.wahappen...geesh!
Last edited by mrdeetag at Sep 16, 2012,
#23
lmao,,,the back of my martin is nicer then the front by a long shot.
Mr Deetag
THE ONE AND ONLY
My friends:
Marco,thebassmaster,angie-rose morbid death,Bubonic
turinbrakes.dace
DRK HRSE & Leno
ahallicks.wahappen...geesh!
#25
Quote by Knackworst1
Well, I find the typical guitar look so boring, the yellow wood with a pure black pickguard, it always relinds me of a handsome douche who plays silly songs o impress girls... However martins don't look that cheap to me, they're different, but for the price category Im in I have to choose between cheap epiphone models(which my local music store keeper told me is rubbish) greg bennett d8 ( he told me it was way better than epi) ( it looks good imo, but has a cedar top :/) ibanez models and fenders ( both look not so good to me)

Have you looked into the Yamaha guitars? They have a few that are quite good.
Hydroxic acid, kills thousands of people every year. Studies have shown lakes and rivers all over North America contain high levels hydroxic acid. Currently governments have taken no action against this life threatening chemical.
#26
I'll think I'll just go to the shop with a bidget and then spend lots of time to get the best for me, the Greg bennett was pretty, hard to play bu z goo sound, however it's a cedar top, It sounded good to me but i'm afraid to get a cedar
#27
Quote by Knackworst1
I'll think I'll just go to the shop with a bidget and then spend lots of time to get the best for me, the Greg bennett was pretty, hard to play bu z goo sound, however it's a cedar top, It sounded good to me but i'm afraid to get a cedar

How come?
Hydroxic acid, kills thousands of people every year. Studies have shown lakes and rivers all over North America contain high levels hydroxic acid. Currently governments have taken no action against this life threatening chemical.
#28
Well, people say it's not as rich sounding as spruce, and not as much volume :/
It doesn't really suit oasis/coldplay songs i think...
#29
Quote by Knackworst1
Well, people say it's not as rich sounding as spruce, and not as much volume :/
It doesn't really suit oasis/coldplay songs i think...

Rich, I'm not quite sure about that descriptor... but yes, it's generally a lower volume guitar, but that doesn't mean it's quite. On a 100W tube amp, is 5vol really quite? No.
And if you plan to strum and sing, it may actually be better, so your guitar doesn't overpower your vocals.

Lastly, you said you tried the guitar and liked it. So, wouldn't you know if it's good or not for oasis and coldplay? You would have tested those songs out, no?

It's all a matter of preference and if you liked the sound of it and it works well with your musical style then it's good! That being said, you should look into spruce tops and then make your own decision.
Hydroxic acid, kills thousands of people every year. Studies have shown lakes and rivers all over North America contain high levels hydroxic acid. Currently governments have taken no action against this life threatening chemical.
#30
Yes , ive played some coldplay and oasis songs, an played them on an epiphone jumbo spruce aswell, I'm not an acoustic specialist, so i thought it was better cuz it was louder... However The coldplay and oasis songs might sound better on the bennett, however both coldplay and oasis played the gibson ej200, so that makes me kinda blind for oter models
#31
Quote by Knackworst1
Yes , ive played some coldplay and oasis songs, an played them on an epiphone jumbo spruce aswell, I'm not an acoustic specialist, so i thought it was better cuz it was louder... However The coldplay and oasis songs might sound better on the bennett, however both coldplay and oasis played the gibson ej200, so that makes me kinda blind for oter models

It's irrelevant which guitars THEY played. I suggest going back to the store and playing them all again. Forget about the woods, just focus on the feel and the sound you get out.
Hydroxic acid, kills thousands of people every year. Studies have shown lakes and rivers all over North America contain high levels hydroxic acid. Currently governments have taken no action against this life threatening chemical.
#32
Quote by |Long|
It's irrelevant which guitars THEY played. I suggest going back to the store and playing them all again. Forget about the woods, just focus on the feel and the sound you get out.
Knackworst1", seems to possess the innate ability to completely misinterpret the information he's given, then formulate an opinion based on the fantasies he creates from said data. Or perhaps theories based on assumptions with a negative correlation. For example, "if you play "Coldplay's" guitars, you will sound like Coldplay. One hopes this situation will eventually improve with experience.

Besides, louder is better.....,isn't it?
Last edited by Captaincranky at Sep 18, 2012,
#33
I never said that playing coldplay's guitars will make you sound like them. You just feel better when havig one of your favorite band's instruments, I think we can all relate to that.
Also I'm just doing tons of research before buying anything, because i don't want to make a mistake afterwards and said 'I better bought that other guitar'
#34
You are massively tangential, and you manage to misinterpret the information you're given.

This thread is a continuation of, "Cedar vs. Spruce"....nothing more.

You were given the differences between tops made from these two woods.

You were told that cedar doesn't respond well to hard picking.

Unless you want to be fully involved with finger style. I don't see that happening, do you?

So, since you want to play rock, a cedar top guitar should be off the table, as it doesn't respond well to hard flat picking.

Now, buy what you like the sound of. We can't tell you what you want to hear. And that's either figuratively, or literally.

However, you did like the Yamaha FG700, and everybody here thinks they're one helluva bang for the buck.

Personally, I think you should go for the acoustic electric version of it: http://www.musiciansfriend.com/guitars/yamaha-solid-top-cutaway-acoustic-electric-guitar That's within your budget! ($300.00)

The electronics can be tailored to give you many sounds, coupled with the amp's reverb, (or reverb pedal), you get the "you are there sound", you seem to be seeking. And, with electronics, you stand a much better chance of getting close to the recorded sounds you've been listening to.

You can sample all the guitars you want at the store, but IMO, that's not even terribly valid, since you're going to run into all different brands and alloys of strings, in different states of wear. Then there's relative humidity, and store acoustics to contend with. But most of all BUDGET!

BTW, your head will likely break before you are able to make a decision after auditioning the hundreds of choices of instruments available. You won't remember what the first one sounded like, and you'll have to start all over.
Last edited by Captaincranky at Sep 18, 2012,