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fredfrank
Jan-27-2010, 7:42pm
Okey, dokey. I'm going to attempt to post some sound files for these two Red Diamond mandolins. I had hijacked a thread on Ellis mandos a while back, and I apologize for that. Feel free to hijack this one if you'd like to pay me back!

Rooster59
Jan-27-2010, 9:10pm
Nice! Thanks for the post.
I had all the clips open so I could switch back and forth to compare.
I had trouble hearing any difference on the first tune but to my ear, the A5 sounded like it had a bit bigger bottom on Rosewood Casket. How do they compare in real life?

fredfrank
Jan-27-2010, 9:15pm
That's my take on them in person. The F-5 has a bit more cutting power, but the A-5 has a nice full spectrum of tone. They are both pretty fun to play.

hank
Jan-27-2010, 9:55pm
Fred you got it rough! :crying: You redefine as good good as it gets. ;)
Really nice pickin on some mighty fine examples of American made. Thanks for sharing.

pjlama
Jan-28-2010, 1:29am
What a pair! They both sound and look great. You should be very pleased.

Gary Alter
Jan-28-2010, 2:02am
Fred, I see your A-5 is listed in Don's owners file as being a Vintage 22. Is the Vintage F a 22 or 24? On his list he also shows a prototype Vintage 25 F in the works, I guess he's working on a Fern replica? BTW, fine picking and the A sounds a little looser to my ear.

grassrootphilosopher
Jan-28-2010, 6:41am
There you go. Thank´s for the music. You play well!

My sleuthing took me over to Don McRostie´s site (http://reddiamondmandolins.com/?page_id=6). It indicates that your F-5 style mando is No. 175 (his take on Loar stylistics) as the A-style mando is No. 203 (indicated as Vintage 22 though I wouldn´t know what the 22 stands for as opposed to 24 which is also an option for a Red Diamond).

I had the impression that the A was a little more tight than the F (before I checked the serial no). What I especially liked about the mandos was the etheral ringing of the strings when you slide. This was especially evident on the F-Big Sciota clip. One of the indicators of a good mandolin I think.

What kind of recording setup have you used (microphone, recording device, aditional gadgets [EQ, reverb etc.; I suppose it was recorded without any...])

Finally, congrats on two very fine mandos.

AlanN
Jan-28-2010, 7:17am
Nice playing. To my ears, A beats F.

wildpikr
Jan-28-2010, 8:04am
Nice picking and they both sound good but the A seems to have a fuller tone. How do they sound with chords - chopped or not?:popcorn:

Scotti Adams
Jan-28-2010, 8:14am
Nice playing. To my ears, A beats F.

Same here....the A seems clearer. Both sound great though.

fredfrank
Jan-28-2010, 8:27am
The Vintage 22 is the "Crusher " voicing. The 24 is the "Reischman" voicing. My F was neither until recently when I sent it to Don and he re-voiced it to the Reischman voicing. So it seems a little like a new mandolin right now. Apparently, he had to build a new back to re-voice it. In the past four or so months, I've been playing the A a lot, so it does sound more open to me.

My recording setup is as follows:

Zoom H4.


I haven't been playing a lot of mandolin lately, as I've been moved to banjo in our group, but I did get a chance to play the re-voiced F in our practice the other night. Boy does it ever cut well. I've always thought that the best mandolin for a band situation may not always be the full, warm sound. In order to be heard well, I believe that mandolin in a band has to have more top end. Even the chop from the F has more power to carry through the rest of the group.

Yellowmandolin
Jan-28-2010, 10:34am
Great picture, it seems your photography is right up there with your playing!

Skip Kelley
Jan-28-2010, 12:33pm
Nice playing. To my ears, A beats F.

Same with me. Both sound great and your picking is awesome as well!

Jonas
Jan-28-2010, 12:39pm
Amazing sound! I really like those clips! Thanks!

Don Grieser
Jan-28-2010, 12:42pm
Wonderful tone on both, same on the picking. Slight preference here for the A also.

fredfrank
Jan-28-2010, 7:08pm
Thanks to everyone - I appreciate the compliments - clams and all!

Jacob, if you are working with Don, I'm sure you had a hand in working over this Vintage F.

F-2 Dave
Jan-28-2010, 7:10pm
Both sound great. I like the A better. Nice clean pickin'.

hank
Jan-28-2010, 7:42pm
What's up with the difference in the Email and cafe' post? Ex.
Cafe'
Re: Red Diamond Vintage A-5 & F-5

Thanks to everyone - I appreciate the compliments - clams and all!

Jacob, if you are working with Don, I'm sure you had a hand in working over this Vintage F.
__________________

Email

Thanks to everyone - I appreciate the compliments - clams and all!

Jacob, if you are working with Don, I'm sure you had a hand in working over this Vintage F.

Here's a clip from a couple of years ago before the mando was re-voiced. Boy, youtube sure mess up the sound on stuff - my DVD of this sounds much clearer.

Perry
Jan-28-2010, 7:50pm
Have not listened to the clips above yet but will...

I had one of Don's early A's circa 1998; I had many a guitar but was new to the mandolin but it sounded better then fine to me. Back then Harry and Jean West had one of the only mandolin centric stores around besides Mando Bros. Anyway I brought it to the the local music store for an opinion (the owner had a Monteleone) anyway they were sort of wishy whashy about it so like an idiot I sent it back....I bought a Flatiron A5 instead...let's call it the Red Diamond that got away.....

The Red Diamond A had a bit of a birth mark in the wood behind the bridge......Always wondered what it would have sounded like had I been thomping away on it for the last 12 or so years...Flatiron long gone; so is a Collings MT2H

Anybody here have that mando and if so how's it doing?

hank
Jan-28-2010, 7:56pm
I guess it's an edit without an explanation.

fredfrank
Jan-28-2010, 8:02pm
Hank, I thought I'd put up a youtube video of our band with me playing the Vintage F before the re-voicing, but the sound quality was so bad, I thought I'd take it down. It really didn't help this discussion much since you couldn't really hear the tone of the mandolin that well.

Don't know about any e-mails.

sgarrity
Jan-28-2010, 8:21pm
I've owned three Red Diamonds.....crazy huh?? My biggest mistake was selling the first one. It was a hoss of a mandolin. I tried replacing that tone with two others but it just didn't work for me. One of them was a Crusher voiced A5 and that thing was a nice mandolin. Perfect note separation and crystalline trebles. Don makes a fine mandolin and is great to work with!!

Nice playing Fred and I'll jump on the bandwagon and give the slight edge to your A5 based on those clips. That is certainly a pair to draw to!!

Bill Van Liere
Jan-28-2010, 8:58pm
Nuther vote for the A Fred, although both are very fine.

Nice sounding notes that's not got that harsh, edgy tone that I hear a little too often from some recent builds. I suspect that your hands has something to do with the wonderful tone.

Good work.

hank
Jan-28-2010, 9:45pm
Thanks Fred, I guess this is what happens when we enter a post that members are receiving as email. I did the same thing with the dirty laundry thread, told it like it was and then did an edit out to remove some fuel from the fire.

Rick Schmidlin
Feb-20-2011, 2:54pm
Fredfrank has here has a sound clip of a Red Diamond A Vintage 22.

Fstpicker
Feb-21-2011, 2:06am
The "A" may have a little more richness in the mids & the lows, and the "F" may have a slight bit more bell-like tonal quality in the trebs. If I HAD to pick one, I'd pick the "A", but then being an "A" owner, I may be slightly prejudiced.

Both are sooo close, however.

Jeff

Ivan Kelsall
Feb-21-2011, 4:18am
Both are great sounding instruments,but i go along with the general consensus that the "A" has a more 'full' tone - not much in it,but it's there,
Ivan

John Gardinsky
Feb-21-2011, 6:45am
Vintage 24

John Gardinsky
Feb-21-2011, 6:48am
Like the way both sound Fred and great picking. If you ever decide to let go of the A you can call on me...

fredfrank
Feb-21-2011, 9:04am
Sorry, John. I have already sold the A model. Actually, I'm regretting it, but it was nice to pay my mortgage for those few months!

Yellowmandolin
Feb-21-2011, 9:29am
Nice job, John! That sounds great. If you are ever in the Columbus area, give me a shout, I'd be interested in comparing our two Vintage '24s. As I've told you before, that one you have was one of my favorites and helped make my decision to go for a Reishman voiced one.

John Gardinsky
Feb-21-2011, 4:26pm
Understandable Fred. Will do Jacob.

Cheryl Watson
Oct-04-2011, 9:45am
I played a Crusher voiced Vintage 22 F-style Red Diamond this week at IBMA, 2011. I wanted to bring it home but this economy has been rough on me. It had a compound radius of 7" that flattened out slightly to a 12" radius. I usually prefer no more than a 14" radius. The tone was clean, deep, articulate and it just sang to me. The bottom end was strong, the midrange popped and cut, and the trebles were sweet yet cut well when I wanted them to. Gorgeous mandolin too. It had it ALL. Don McRostie is a very friendly, polite gentleman. I really enjoyed meeting him. That F5 would have been the perfect alter ego to my Kimble A which is drier sounding with less bottom end. I am completely jealous over who will get that one! I admit it.

robert.najlis
Oct-04-2011, 9:53am
I played a Crusher voiced Vintage 22 F-style Red Diamond this week at IBMA, 2011. I wanted to bring it home but this economy has been rough on me. It had a compound radius of 7" that flattened out slightly to a 12" radius. I usually prefer no more than a 14" radius. The tone was clean, deep, articulate and it just sang to me. The bottom end was strong, the midrange popped and cut, and the trebles were sweet yet cut well when I wanted them to. Gorgeous mandolin too. It had it ALL. Don McRostie is a very friendly, polite gentleman. I really enjoyed meeting him. That F5 would have been the perfect alter ego to my Kimble A which is drier sounding with less bottom end. I am completely jealous over who will get that one! I admit it.

How does it compare to your Williamson? :)

robert.najlis
Oct-05-2011, 4:14pm
It had a compound radius of 7" that flattened out slightly to a 12" radius. I usually prefer no more than a 14" radius.
Another question for you. How did you like the extreme radius, compared to the flatter board you are used to? My Williamson has quite an extreme radius.