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piiman
Jan-29-2006, 10:46pm
Would an Eastman 805D solid top,sides and back sound better than a Gibson A50 ply top. I have a A50 that just doesn't sound so good, very thin sounding. I'm looking at buying the Eastman without playing it first. Anyone have any experience with these?

jasona
Jan-29-2006, 10:50pm
A50s were solid as I understand it, the A40s were laminate--but I thought the top was still solid on those even.

mandroid
Jan-30-2006, 1:25am
the A40 was the only gibson to use mahogany for the rim (solid I believe) and the back which is an arched laminate back, layers of veneer pressed in that shape.
top still carved, great instrument, mine was.

Dave Hanson
Jan-30-2006, 2:51am
I've got a 1950s Gibson A40/50 with solid top, laminate back etc, it sounds like ####, I can't wait to get rid of it.
Go for an Eastman, the round sound hole models sound great.

Dave H

Jim Yates
Jan-30-2006, 10:33am
I went to the Twelfth Fret in Toronto about a year ago to buy a Gibson A40 that was advertised on their website. At the time I'd never heard of Eastmans (Eastmen?). I thought they looked good, so I took a 605 and the A40 into the back room and played the same thing on both instruments. The 605 blew the A40 away ... and it was $400 cheaper. Needless to say, I took home the Eastman and have never regretted it.

stevem
Jan-30-2006, 10:44am
Mojo v. mo' jinglies in your pocket...

rlw
Jan-30-2006, 1:53pm
I have an Eastman 614 the oval hole and a MK Dragonfly.

The Eastman has a really deep rich sound compared to the MK.

The MK has a easier to play radius fret board and more of what I would consider bluegrass twang.

After playing the Eastman for 30 to 45 minutes the thing opens up and sounds like it's amplified.

My new Eastman appears to have a defective bridge which I emailed the company about but have not received a reply as
of yet. The top saddle post seem to flop around in the base
causing the bridge to tile almost 10 degrees forward.

I've seen alot of people trash the MK but I think the finish
and craftsmanship on the MK is every bit as good as that of the Eastman if not better. They just don't sound quite as good.

I have no experence with Gibson mandolins yet, I've only been playing for a couple weeks. I've owned several of their guitars and really don't care for them. Give me a Martin or even a Taylor any day.

metalmandolin
Jan-30-2006, 8:20pm
For Bluegrass, the Eastman would win hands-down. The A40s and A50s suffer from the shorter neck scale, and except for the occasional oddity, just do not have the punch.

mikeyes
Jan-31-2006, 9:25am
I think it is hard to make such a comparison on a class to class basis, rather it is easier in a one to one, A/B situation. #A/Bing an Eastman and a Gibson A40/50 does not confer knowledge of every instrument in each class.

A40/50s were built over a multi-decade period and you will find some that are terrific (I have an A50 that knows no bounds) and others that are terrible. #In addition you are talking about instruments that are voiced for different audiences and have completely different structures so the A/B usually comes down to a matter of taste.

Since Eastman mandolins vary a little less than vintage A model F hole Gibsons you are likely to find more Eastman mandolins that are consitent with one another than with the Gibsons. #Still, you should buy the instrument that "sings" to you and if this involves playing a thousand mandolins, so be it. #If you are in a "love at first sight" relationship with your instrument, you will overlook its faults and try to extend its virtues as you learn to set it up and play it. #I have found better instruments than the ones I own but for a variety of reasons (mostly financial, but some asthetic) I stick with the one I brought to the dance.

If you are only "satisfied" with an instrument and not deeply in love with it, you will eventually want to change. #Being dis-satisfied will lead to not going the extra mile to learn to play it and that might take a lot of the fun out.

So I propose that these discussions, while they offer a lot of information in each of the members of a class of instruments, are not very useful.


There, I said it! #Take it for what it is worth <G>

Tom C
Jan-31-2006, 9:42am
By getting an Eastman, you know you are getting a mando that is probably more playable than the A50 and sounds better.

Chip Booth
Jan-31-2006, 12:32pm
Quote:
"I think it is hard to make such a comparison on a class to class basis, rather it is easier in a one to one, A/B situation. A/Bing an Eastman and a Gibson A40/50 does not confer knowledge of every instrument in each class. "

Quote:
"By getting an Eastman, you know you are getting a mando that is probably more playable than the A50 and sounds better. "

Wow, look at those two posts and let that tell you something.

For my 2 cents, I've never played an A40/50 or an Eastman that I thought was any good. I expect there are some of both out there, you have to look for them.

Chip

johnnymando
Jan-31-2006, 2:02pm
an Eastman will sound better than most A50/40's,however,the value will tank.... as the Gibsons value will remain stable and appreciate eventually.
For a player,the Eastmans probably a better bet unless you find that rare Gibby.I've got an early 40's A50 that sounds pretty good if you can work with the shorter scale neck.

chuck.naill
Jan-31-2006, 2:33pm
If you get an Eastman makes sure to get someone to fit the bridge correctly. They come shiped without strings and bridge attached.

Since it's been beat to death in another post. I have an Eastman with the Weber copy tailpeice. After the huge #settlement Eastman will have to start using differant materials and step up productions using CNC machines. NO more ebony, just black plastic.

Watch out for the old ones to command higher prices as vintage instruments. ALso the Mid War examples might be better than the pre War one's.

Chuck

Pen
Jan-31-2006, 4:51pm
I gotta chime in (since I have a 58 A-40). It has the "woofiest" sound I've ever heard. I've also played others that sound like a $300 starter mando. It's definatly hit or miss.

I remember my first mando lesson. My teacher immediately asked to buy the Gibson after picking it for a min or 2. LOL - I think his comment was "No beginner should be lucky enough to start on sumpin this nice". I still consider it the best value I've seen for $800.

Stephen Perry
Jan-31-2006, 5:53pm
If you get an Eastman makes sure to get someone to fit the bridge correctly. They come shiped without strings and bridge attached.
Actually, they are shipped set up reasonably well. I simply ask Eastman not to set them up so I can do it. Simply a different approach to things.

thekingprawn
Jan-31-2006, 6:40pm
Chuck, please elaborate on the comment about Eastman going to CNC production and plastic. I couldn't tell if you were being sarcastic or not. Steve or others, is there more info I need regarding this statement before I take the leap and spend money on an Eastman? Thanks!

JEStanek
Jan-31-2006, 7:03pm
I'm reasonably confident Eastman isn't going to CNC only made mandos made of plastic! #Any sooner than Gibson will start selling their mandos at the Organ Store in your local mall! #This is out of the Eastman Tailpiece thread in the equipment section.

I am glad I spent my money on one. I'll do it again too.

Jamie

chuck.naill
Jan-31-2006, 7:08pm
Mr. Thekingprawn,

Everything that I said was in jest regarding Eastman going to CNC machines and using plastic. There was another post discussing Eastman's use of a tailpeice that was the same or similar to the ones designed by Weber. I was poking a little fun.

Steve did set me straight that as an Eastman dealer he requests that Eastman ship him their instruments without the strings and bridge attached. This is the way that I first saw my Eastman MD 504 #13.

You are not going to be able to get a better deal than from Steve at Gianna Violins and plus he does the set up on an individual basis. I could not be more happy with the sound and workmanship. Ebony is extensivily used as a fingerboard,bridge, truss rod cover,and headstock overlay. The nut is bone. THe gold inlay on the headstock is wood, not gold paint. THe Eastmans are hand carved, no cnc machines.

Sorry for the misdirect,

Chuck

EastmanGordon
Jan-31-2006, 10:22pm
Can we keep nothing secret?

Okay, the CNC's are in place but we are having a hard time sourcing a good supply of plastic spruce. My agent tells me that there will soon be a huge influx of unsold fake fir christmas trees hitting the market which should fill the bill nicely. The logo will be done up in a nice green marbled mother of toilet seat. Any ideas on what we can use on the back and sides?
Gordon
ps. Perhaps hard maple candy? http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

JEStanek
Feb-01-2006, 7:42am
Gordon, I've got some "wood" paneling off of my old 1979 Toyota corrla wagon that would make for a sweet bell like tone for the bakcs and sides. The finish is a litle distressed. Maybe you could charge more? A more recent source is the PT Cruiser Woody for the lowere end models.

Jamie

JGWoods
Feb-01-2006, 10:49am
If it's fake paneling to be used I am a bit tired of the wood look- can you do fake brick? Better for urban settings...

250sc
Feb-01-2006, 12:00pm
Bottom Line:

Play them both and take home the one that speaks to you. No two mandolins are the same, even of the same model and make.

metalmandolin
Feb-01-2006, 9:24pm
Gordon,

How about solid...not laminated, masonite sides and back?

Roscoe

EastmanGordon
Feb-02-2006, 8:38am
It's hard to find solid masonite these days. We searched the forests of the great northwest for several years and did not find one masonite tree. I'll call Bruce at Orcas Tonewoods and see what he has in stock.
G.

JGWoods
Feb-02-2006, 8:49am
It's hard to find solid masonite these days. We searched the forests of the great northwest for several years and did not find one masonite tree. I'll call Bruce at Orcas Tonewoods and see what he has in stock.
G.
The masonite tree grows in Asia.
http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/laugh.gif

Ted Eschliman
Feb-02-2006, 9:07am
Environmentally conscious, I would never dream of perpetuating Asian deforestation by encouraging the use of an instrument from the rare and endangered Masonite forests.

With those trees all gone, those cute little endangered Naugahydes would not have a place to live.