View Full Version : Collings MT of.... Guitars

Nov-30-2009, 8:55pm
Not sure if this is in the right category, but.....

I have a Collings MT and love the tone, volume, and price. For the guitar pickers in the Cafe, just curious what would be the Collings MT (best bang for the buck) for guitars.

I have a 1989 Alvarez Yairi, but it's just not a bluegrass guitar and doesnt get the volume or tone I'm looking for when I jam with folks. However, I could never get rid of it b/c I've had it since I was 15.

I've heard you can get a used Collings for $2000. What about Martins? Anything under $1500?


Dec-01-2009, 11:37am
I'd recommend a martin D-18v or HD-28V........They are amongst Martin's most popular and consistent models. The 18v's used go for about $1500 or so.

Jill McAuley
Dec-01-2009, 11:58am
You might get more responses if you post this in the "General" category, as this is the category specific to tenor guitars. There was a thread in the General section recently asking about the best guitars to buy in a certain price range, and also one about what guitars forum members owned, so guitar-centric questions do pop up over there from time to time.


Dec-01-2009, 6:11pm
I'll second the D-18V suggestion. They're nice guitars. As far as a Collings, getting one for $2000 is a tall order even in this economy. $2200-2400 is much more likely for a used D1 or D2H.

Dec-01-2009, 6:35pm
Considering the versitlity of the MT (as described by some as a more "modern" tone vs. an old "woody" bluegrass tone....and I agree as I own an MT) I would recomend an OM body shaped guitar. One that, I think, would parallel an MT quite well would be a Martin OM-21. It seems to be sort of a sleeper in the Martin standard series. Rosewood back and sides and simple trim appointments brings the minimun advertised price to $1,999.00. A larger volume Martin dealer may be able to go a little lower than that even. I've seen a few on the used market for $1200-$1400.

If bluegrass is your primary objective, I quite agree with the mention of a D-18v.

Dec-01-2009, 6:41pm
Funny about your Yairi tone/volume issue, assuming it's a Dreadnaught (if not, all bets are off)...my father in law has a 1977 Yairi dread that's essentially a D-28 copy that's an absolute beast. Great bass without sacrificing any midrange or upper sparkle...

Anyway, the Martin suggestions above are good, and you can probably throw the D-16 series into that category as well. I personally have a Guild D-40 (unfortunately built after the Fender acquisition so not necessarily built like a tank, but USA made and nice nontheless) spruce/hog that's an excellent guitar for the price, though it doesn't have the bass boom that a rosewood would. It had some finish checking and I got it and the case for < 500, and I'd compare it favorably to many in the 1500-2500 range (where I think it usually sells).

Recording King's professional series and Blueridge's pro series guitars can be quite good, though there may be some variability in QC given their import tag. They check in from 600-2000 (depending on how ornate you get), and Big Joe in particular was singing their praises in a recent thread (the RCs, anyway).

Of the guitars I've played locally I've been most impressed by Seagulls of late...very affordable but excellent craftsmanship and tone, and though imported they're at least from the same continent. Decent electronics, too. I think they'd get my "bang for the buck" vote for now...especially when comparing them to the Martin laminate models in a similar price range, but I haven't played a Recording King yet.

This is a tough category for guitars, because you really can find a jam/stage worthy instrument in the 600-2000 dollar range without too much trouble...good luck!

EDIT: Breedlove just popped into my head as well, though they tend to be a little pricier (though well worth it based on the ones I've seen)...

AW Meyer
Dec-02-2009, 1:00pm
Another suggestion:

Dec-02-2009, 1:17pm
Thanks for all the replies. Yeah, not really sure how to switch the category. If someone wants to switch, it go for it.

Eitherway, thanks for the comments.
- c

Dec-02-2009, 3:09pm
I've heard you can get a used Collings for $2000. What about Martins? Anything under $1500?

For loud bluegrass guitars under $1K, Blueridge BRs are popular: http://www.janetdavismusic.com/br240.html