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Thread: Savannah SA-120

  1. #1
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    Default Savannah SA-120

    Hello folks,

    I'm in the market for another mandolin. I've got my eyes upon the Savannah SA-120 from the Mandolin Hut. I was wondering if anyone had any experience with this little beaut? It's a great price and Paul from the Mandolin Hut said he liked it better than the Kentucky KM-150 for better tone and volume, comparing it to the KM-160. I know that they are just renamed Johnson mandolins, but I just want to make sure nobody has bought one and it was a total bombshell.

    Thanks for your consideration :D

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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    Guess nobody has this mandolin

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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    I had one. It was nice and loud and played well after a good set up. It's doesn't sounds as nice as others I have but its a good mandolin for the money.

    Jamie
    There are two things to aim at in life: first, to get what you want; and, after that, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second. Logan Pearsall Smith, 1865 - 1946

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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    Cool. I had a Rover RM-75 (that I sold) so I'm excited to see what it will sound like compared to that. Any clips or videos that I've heard it sounds really great, I was just shocked by the price. What mandolins are you comparing it to that you have?

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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    Broad Generalizations aside.. each is different in production line variations,
    since its using wood .and made by people who are paid to produce Quantity,

    So go play many if possible , then get the better sounding one
    writing about music
    is like dancing,
    about architecture

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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    Right, but I'm ordering online and I'm a thousand miles away from any place that I know of that has one..so

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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    Would you suggest going for the KM-150 instead? I'm not exactly a beginner, but I'm no where near intermediate. I'm looking for something that'll last me a while, and I'll be taking lessons (eventually).

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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    The Kentucky and the Savannah should be comparable (price wise). I think Kentucky has doen more quality improvements. The main thing, the most important thing, with inexpensive instruments is that they get a good set up before it is sent to you and if its got some bum parts (poor intonation or wonky tuners) that you can return it.

    Jamie
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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Giuffrida View Post
    ...I'm ordering online and I'm a thousand miles away from any place that I know of that has one...
    You aren't a thousand miles away from Buckdancer's Choice in Portland ME, nor are you a thousand miles away from The Music Emporium in Lexington MA. Both have Kentucky instruments. How much trouble you want to go to, to purchase a few-hundred-dollar mandolin -- well, that's your choice. But opportunities to try some out do exist.
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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    But neither of them have any mandolins in my price range of the Kentucky KM-150 or Savannah SA-120, which is what I am finding around the vast majority of places. Thanks though.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    I never owned a Savannah 120, but when I tried one in a store in Scotland I was very, very surprised by how good it was. I echo others' recommendations about set-up (the instrument when I tried it came from the factory with truly awful strings that would have to be thrown away before the first note was even played).

    It will make a great starter instrument that should keep a beginner happy for quite a while, and after that could function as a second mandolin or one for taking camping, etc. But I do wonder if, by spending just a little more (and I do mean a little), you might get a much better overall deal. The latest entry level instruments from Eastman and The Loar are getting very, very good reports. Folkmusician.com sells The Loar LM220 for about $340; that might keep you happy for years.

    ron

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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    Thanks for all the info guys, I really appreciate it!

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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    Rob, what do you currently have and what are you looking for sound wise? The Savannah and KM150 are both decent starters but if you're looking for a "next level" instrument saving a little longer may yield you more satisfaction. If you are on a tighter budget and this will be a first ff hole instrument, they are good places to start.

    Jamie
    There are two things to aim at in life: first, to get what you want; and, after that, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second. Logan Pearsall Smith, 1865 - 1946

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  14. #14
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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Giuffrida View Post
    But neither of them have any mandolins in my price range of the Kentucky KM-150 or Savannah ...
    1) Cathedral Music in Troy, NY, is the first place that I played any Kentucky. They were the definitely lower-end, one of them probably a 150, and very impressive for the price. Yes, that's still a few hours from Rochester, but definitely worth a phone call. And Clem (Klem?) is a good guy to talk to. (NFI).

    2) I suspect that folks are trying to be overly fair, and not stating that Kentucky gets way more favorable comment around here than most of their comparably priced competitors.

    3) DO make sure that any mandolin comes fully set-up. The big box stores or Guitar Center don't do that, or even open the box. The Cafe sponsors definitely do!

    Not that MOST manufacturers expect the retailer to do the final set-up to the buyer's preference. No set-up = higher profit, especially at the low end where manufacturing tolerances might be a bit sloppier. That's one area where Kentucky has established their reputation.

    Good luck!
    - Ed

    "What our group lacks in musicianship is offset by our willingness to humiliate ourselves." - David Hochman

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    Default Re: Savannah SA-120

    There's no way I'm gonna drive 5 hours to New York XD But thanks for the info, Ed. Also, I am corresponding with someone with an ad in the classifieds for a KM-254 (The burgandy one). I used to have a Rover RM-75 and, looking at the specs, looks exactly the same save the F style curl and point. Any thoughts on the KM-250 series?

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