thinking about a 2nd mandolin

  1. Wayne Bagley
    Wayne Bagley
    I have been saving my pennies.
    I'm now thinking about a 2nd mandolin.

    Since I already have a acoustic mandolin my line of thought is for something different so I am considering a Godin A8 mandolin. I have played one and the neck and action feel so smooth and comfortable. There's just a total difference playing something like this instrument. I feel it will help me improve.

    Than once I'm happier with my playing perhaps a new acoustic. Perhaps a Loar!
  2. Gelsenbury
    Gelsenbury
    They call it mandolin acquisition syndrome (MAS). :D The bug hasn't caught me yet. I have two mandolins in two different countries, and it is nice to have one available to play when I visit my mum. But my clear favourite is the one that lives with me, and I haven't had the urge (or the money!) so far to add another one. If I had several mandolins, I'd probably feel as if I were neglecting them!

    Having said all that, becoming familiar with several different instruments is indeed bound to help you become a more versatile player and a better connoisseur of mandolins. So if you can afford it, go right ahead and enjoy the experience!
  3. scootergirl62
    scootergirl62
    I've only had my Mandolin a month, and clearly looking at your next is part of this journey! While I'm waiting until I can play a little more confidently, I agree with Gelsenbury - it is bound to help you become more versatile. If I came across something that sounded better, played easier and more comfortable, I'd probably do it if I could afford it!
  4. onawhim
    onawhim
    I now have 3! and only been playing since feb. got a kentucky150 (as per advice from this site as a starter mando)- its doing me very well. Then i heard about an octave mandolin and got an offer re an ashbury with a pick up which couldn't be turned down - and then i saw an old one for 50 on ebay which i loved the look of and bought - took to my local luthier,paid 30, and now have a great mando to carry around with me.

    the Kentucky is not a keeper - but probably still have a year or so on it before thinking of upgrading.

    I have MAS for sure!

    Zoe
  5. Crabgrass
    Crabgrass
    I started with a Rover RM-50. Had never played, wasn't sure I'd like it, so seemed like a good starter mando. It was! Nice tone and very playable. I was quite happy with it. Then literally a few days after I got the Rover, wandered into a music store and played a Big Muddy. Klunk. I was in love.

    If I hadn't picked up the Big Muddy, I'd have probably played the Rover very happily for a year or so.

    I'm going to sell the Rover to avoid first symptoms of MAS, which I simply can't afford.

    I didn't opt for an electric mando, since it punches through so well unplugged, but it sounds like fun.
  6. puckboy99
    puckboy99
    I can't speak for their mandos, but I've played Godin guitars before & they are very nicely done & priced well.

    I'm sure you'd be happy with one !
  7. Wayne Bagley
    Wayne Bagley
    Thanks everyone.
  8. Wayne Bagley
    Wayne Bagley
    My big concern is the amp.

    Regretabbly I don't own an acoustic amp and I can't afford to purchase both the A8 and a new acoustic amp at the same time.

    What I do have (and will be using) is a good quality Class 2 - 5 Watt CRATE tube amp.
    It's a good sounding amp and a simple one with the only settings being volume and tone.

    I hope it sounds okay with the mandolin as it will have to do...........
  9. Crabgrass
    Crabgrass
    I have an acoustic amp and a regular electric guitar amp. There's a huge difference. A good acoustic amp will capture all the shimmer, complexity, and richness of the acoustic sound. Well, save your pennies. You can pick up a good used acoustic amp for around a hundred bucks. Good luck.
  10. celtolin
    celtolin
    I've always wanted to play a Godin, but nowhere I was living had any while I was looking.

    As far as the amp is concerned, I use a Fender Champion 600, which probably isn't too far from your CRATE, and it does me just fine (and I don't even get a tone knob...)
  11. Mo Soar
    Mo Soar
    I wandered into an acoustic music store while I was on vacation (there are no local music stores in my town) and decided to play some mandolins, just to compare the A and F styles and the round hole vs f hole sound. Ended up walking out with a very slightly used Eastman 504 (A style, round hole). The old Kay I have was a great deal, but the new Eastman plays so much better...

    Also played a few instruments in the $1,500-$3,500 price range. Ummm. Wow.
  12. Wayne Bagley
    Wayne Bagley
    Congrats on the new Eastman
    Enjoy.
  13. scootergirl62
    scootergirl62
    Must be Eastman week - this newbie found herself playing a 605 (waaay out of my range) and the next day, walked out of Bernunzio's with a new MD 505 - beautiful intrument. So much for waiting till I can play better - but even my husband said how much better I sound playing it. So much easier to fret. A real joy to play!
  14. jdawson
    jdawson
    I am trying to resist my craving for a 515 and you people aren't helping me much! Seriously though, congratulations on the Eastman mandolin acquisitions....they are beautiful instruments with a beautiful sound IMHO.
  15. scootergirl62
    scootergirl62
    Thanks Jdawson - I have to tell you - I played a 605 and that did it for me. It was just way out of my price range. The 505 was only in my range because of the great trade they gave me on the Epiphone. Made the goal attainable. At this point in my playing - Newbie Newberson that I am, I went for a great sounding instrument over whether A or F....A was a reachable goal for me. But if you have your heart set on a F...well, then that's what you have your heart set on. Good luck in your quest!
  16. jdawson
    jdawson
    Scootergirl,

    Does your Eastman have a flat or radiused fingerboard? If radiused, does it make it easier for you to play? I will have to try both styles before upgrading but I am just curious.
  17. scootergirl62
    scootergirl62
    It's Radiused (as is the 515) and I think it's easier to play than my epiphone was. I would definitely give it a try if you are looking to go to Eastman. I did try the 605 - beautiful and even easier to fret. I also tried another 505 - they all sound different and I like the one I have better - and it's so loud! I had a pickup in my Epiphone and I'll tell you - I don't think I'll be needing one any time soon on the Eastman - it's just so loud and clear.
  18. Wayne Bagley
    Wayne Bagley
    I'm loving this post. I believe that guality instruments properly setup can only help us in our efforts to become good players. And sucess will drive us to practise more.
    Congrats on the new mandolins. Enjoy.
    They told me anywhere from two weeks to six for my Godin A8.
    It's now been three weeks but not yet.
  19. scootergirl62
    scootergirl62
    It makes such a difference, as you've said. But I have realized that my little Epiphone was a little gem - it was set up, it had a pick up and Bernunzio's has apparently already sold it! The dangerous part is when you put another instrument in your hands and realize that the sound that is coming out of it is sooooo much better than what you've been playing. I know a lot of men won't get this, but it almost reminds me of looking for my wedding dress - you just know "the one" when you find it.

    Hope the weeks speed by for your Godin!
  20. jdawson
    jdawson
    I am definitely leaning towards Eastman for my first upgrade, but want to look at all possibilities. I have to figure out where I can go to try them out. Nothing anywhere near here that I know of. I want to do some serious hands on browsing before I upgrade. Looks like a road trip is in order.
  21. scootergirl62
    scootergirl62
    LOL. Now, I'm not sure I know much about other Mandolins - but I thought the Loar you have is in the same level as my Eastman? Playing devils advocate here, but definitely get your hands on an Eastman to see if there is a difference in sound? Please correct me if I'm wrong - I just thought your 600 was probably a step up from my 505? Or is it just because it's an F style that makes it so much more expensive and not necessarily the sound quality?
  22. jdawson
    jdawson
    I could be mistaken for sure, but I think it's sort of like apples to oranges. You have to look at it from a F or A model perspective if you are restricting yourself to one of those types. From a strictly F model point of view and from what I understand, the Eastman 515 is an upgrade from the Loar 600. Now, having said that, I may very well go with an A model once I have had a chance to compare and play both. Your Eastman 505 probably sounds better than my Loar 600, so in that respect, the 505 would be an upgrade in sound and a reduction in price if I were to look at it without respect to A or F model.
  23. jdawson
    jdawson
    I guess I should have just answered the last sentence of your post with a "Yes". Would've made a lot more sense!
  24. scootergirl62
    scootergirl62
    LOL - no worries - I'm definitely impressed with the Eastman. I was told the difference between the 505 and 515 is the style. If you look at the spec's for both - I think they have identical specs. Do you have a place you can go to? I guess you're gonna be taking a roadtrip when your really ready to buy - and would you trade you're Loar in?
  25. jdawson
    jdawson
    I think that is correct...the 505 and 515 are the same level except one is A and one is F. I do not know of anyplace near my home that carries mandolins, let alone Eastmans. There is a shop about 3 hours away that carries Eastman and many others. I'll just have to make sure they have some in stock before I go.
  26. scootergirl62
    scootergirl62
    Keep us posted!
  27. Wayne Bagley
    Wayne Bagley
    I'm loving this post. New quality instruments properly setup will keep our interest, keep us improving and make us proud of our accomplishments.

    Congrats on the new Eastmans.

    I was told anywhere from two to six weeks for my new Godin A8. It's now week three but no luck yet.
  28. Jim Daniels
    Jim Daniels
    @theoldman, I just bought a Godin A8! I had a cheap starter and loved it, but needed something I could plug in with at church where I play frequently. The Godin is it for me. I love it, and can tell the difference even before having it properly set up. It's at the shop getting ready, and I can't wait to get my hands on it again. I should have it for this weekend (fingers crossed).

    I don't have a lot of hobbies, so I could afford (so I told my wife) to spend some good money on something I'm enjoying. I bought it used (couldn't even tell it's used) for $450 - steal of a deal.

    Hope yours has arrived, and that you're enjoying it!
  29. DerTiefster
    DerTiefster
    Howdy, folks. I've been on the board for 2-3 yrs now, but I'm still a newbie. I thought I'd weigh in (for the arguable benefit of others here) on the pros and cons of MAS. I've suffered from it, but by choice. If you realize it, there are at least two aspects of music involved here: playing and appreciating. You ought to shoot for both, because either by itself is somewhat frustrating and pointless.

    The MAS part in which I have indulged is directed at the hands-on-learner kind of appreciation. I wanted to know what the different instruments sounded like and what they felt like to my hands. You can get a very cursory intro to the sound part from the many and varied sound clips on the web from vendors, performers, and our very own cafe compadres. But this has a detrimental effect on your development as a player if it sucks up part of the limited fraction of your life that can be devoted to learning to play music. That's just a fact -- one thing displaces another (there are things which are synergistic in that doing one makes you better at another in the process, but it seems to me that MAS isn't one).

    The effort I put into finding interesting mandolins, learning about them and the pricing structure around them, takes away from the limited amount of time I have to build up my playing. (Pricing enters here only because I have to try to minimize resale losses. Money still matters.) You Do Not Need multiple mandolins in the newbie stage. That doesn't mean they aren't fun, or that you can't enjoy them, or that anything is wrong in having multiples. I've been absolutely fascinated by the qualitative differences that exist in sound. I could have learned that from some of the "mando-tastings" I have attended. And if I'd played with a goal in mind to learn some particular tunes well, I might have been able to participate in some of the picking at those get-togethers. As it was, I felt too inept, unable to play at even half the speed that the group chose. So I listened, picked up the instruments the others had brought for sharing, and plucked them appreciatively. I enjoyed being there. I enjoyed listening to the others play. I enjoyed meeting others. But I did not enjoy playing in that setting because I really couldn't.

    So, my recommendation is: get something you enjoy playing. If you want to avoid finding out much later that your first mandolin was really holding you back, find some mando-oriented friends and try their instruments or go to a mando-tasting or visit a music store with several mandolins. Gosh, you could even take a flyer on another mandolin in a few months. Return it if it isn't what you expect or sell the first one if the second thrills you. Or keep both, with both eyes open. But unless you are in this with MAS as a goal, don't spend more time on learning about mandolins than on learning to play music with/through them. In the deepest sense, that's what they're for: expressing the music in you in a way that others can hear it. It's like speaking: various instruments provide different accents to the words, but the language and words are your own.

    I hope my retrospective is helpful to someone and doesn't seem too somber and serious. It isn't meant that way, and if it seems so, would you do me the favor of reading it again? Thanks.
  30. onawhim
    onawhim
    So, my recommendation is: get something you enjoy playing.

    Hi -Great post and the above is so true. I have found 'the one' for me (see 'my new mando' thread! ). I now don't want to look and try - too busy spending time with Maeve (yes - i named her! ) I thought last week it was just the improved quality - but it's not - it's the drive to make her sound good and the enjoyment factor in doing that.

    The only glitch really is that she cost a bomb (for me) so it was fortunate circumstances ( I was able to increase my working hours to fulltime as a vacancy arose hence more wages) that got me to this point as I had tried loads of others without success. I am sure that there are cheaper really good ones out there - but it cuts the corner at the start if you can look within a bracket and then find one you really enjoy.

    I now have 2 - an OM and Maeve. The other 2 have been sold! At the moment the OM is looking likley to go too - my content factor with Maeve is that high!
  31. velo
    velo
    @onawhim - I hope you don't part with your OM - its great to have someone else with one ! The mandolin and OM really compliment each other and I have heard it said that having a variety of instrument types really helps with the ability. Playing the OM may be has helped my Banjo playing and visa versa. When are you going to the sore fingers school ? let us know how it goes ...
  32. onawhim
    onawhim
    @Velo - its the sore fingers course next weekend. I have been practising hard getting around Maeve's neck as its wider etc than the Kentucky. I am expecting a sharp intake of breath when I open my case for the first time - I think Maeve is about as far as you could get from a bluegrass mando! Re the OM - I think of it going - then I hear that sound and it stays! I think some of it is lack of competency as I am not using my little finger so it seems a huge leap to make at times - BUT am trying the little finger now so it might ease up - but the way my finger seems to stagger around beyond any cognitive control it maybe a lomng journey.
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