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Thread: Eastman MD505

  1. #1
    Registered User mee's Avatar
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    Default Eastman MD505

    I just bought an Eastman A style mandolin the MD 505. Well it's used, seemed like a good deal and should arrive Wednesday. I'll have 45 days to try it out. Any one have this one? I thought it would be good for camping.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    The 505 is a very nice mando. One of the best, without climbing far up the food chain.
    Robert Fear
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    Isolated enthusiast Caleb's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    I've posted many times that I used to have a 505. Not "good for the money" but a genuinely good instrument. I could have played it for the rest of my life and been just fine.

    Like many Asian imports, it lacked low end and tended more toward the treble (I'm not sure why this seems to be consistently true, and why taking longer to build them like the more higher-end shop do tends to give better low end). I curbed this by using heavier strings and Primetone picks.
    ...

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  6. #4

    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    I had one for a while as my first mandolin. Good enough to get me hooked. Get a good setup and you'll be good to go. Plenty good to play on while you save for the MT or Galatin you will want.
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  8. #5
    Registered User mee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Quote Originally Posted by Br1ck View Post
    I had one for a while as my first mandolin. Good enough to get me hooked. Get a good setup and you'll be good to go. Plenty good to play on while you save for the MT or Galatin you will want.
    This is not my first, I have a Gibson F9 I love and will not part with. I am not a Weber gal, or at least I have never played one that I liked..as for the collings, I wouldn't rule out but I tried one and was told it wasn't as sweet sounding as my F9. So for a second mandolin right now I am looking for something under $500 to sit around a campfire with.
    Last edited by mee; Mar-27-2018 at 2:36am.

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    Registered User FPhil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Used to have a 315, great mandolin, specially for that kind of money. Still regret I sold it, otherwise I would've used it for the same purpose you've bought the 305 for.

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  12. #7

    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    I wouldn't go looking if I had an F9 either, and a 505 will be just dandy as a beater. If you like the Gibson tone, not much else but a Gibson will do IMHO.
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  14. #8
    Registered User mee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	166289So I received the 505 today and definitely needs fresh strings. I suspect it has EJ73s and prefer EJ74s, can these be used on this mandolin?

  15. #9

    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Quote Originally Posted by mee View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	56C8F377-F12D-4B4D-B78F-8AC35A8A6E59.jpg 
Views:	101 
Size:	482.4 KB 
ID:	166289So I received the 505 today and definitely needs fresh strings. I suspect it has EJ73s and prefer EJ74s, can these be used on this mandolin?
    Yes!

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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Yes, itíll take 74 or 75s. My current beater is a 315, and Iím very impressed by what it can do. Nut is a little narrow for me, but the neck and box otherwise are right... change out those strings and play the snot out of it!!
    Chuck

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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Oh, very Cool! Congrats and happy pickin to you

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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Quote Originally Posted by mee View Post
    I just bought an Eastman A style mandolin the MD 505. Well it's used, seemed like a good deal and should arrive Wednesday. I'll have 45 days to try it out. Any one have this one? I thought it would be good for camping.
    Congrats on your purchase of the 505, I just bought my girlfriend a new one in the sunburst finish. The dealer had two of this model in stock, I played both and was surprised at the difference in sound quality in comparing them. Always best to play before pay if given the opportunity.
    Also hard for me to refer to these instruments as "beaters".

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  23. #13
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    I can’t call anything Eastman a beater either. Anything they make could easily be a lifelong instrument.
    ...

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  25. #14
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Quote Originally Posted by Caleb View Post
    I can’t call anything Eastman a beater either. Anything they make could easily be a lifelong instrument.
    Yeah I take the interpretation of a beater as the one that stays out in the room you hang in most and gets picked up often. It will go camping with me.

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  27. #15
    Registered User Darren Bailey's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    I've only played two of these Eastmans, both outside at festivals, but in my limited experience of them neither came close to matching even my cheapest Kentucky 150. I'm sure two instruments don't represent an entire brand, but I was surprised at how lacking in volume or range of tone they had compared with something I throw in the back of my car without a case.

  28. #16
    Registered User mee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Quote Originally Posted by Darren Bailey View Post
    I've only played two of these Eastmans, both outside at festivals, but in my limited experience of them neither came close to matching even my cheapest Kentucky 150. I'm sure two instruments don't represent an entire brand, but I was surprised at how lacking in volume or range of tone they had compared with something I throw in the back of my car without a case.
    I've played good Eastmans and not so good, but on the other hand my experience with a Kentucky made my mind up never to have one although I'm sure there are great ones out there as I've heard people on MC say. I think that's why it is important to try before you buy if possible.

  29. #17
    Isolated enthusiast Caleb's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Darren, I’ve heard that many of the early Eastmans were less than great. Mine was a 2006 and was a solid instrument. The newer ones I’ve come across seem to suggest they’ve got it down pretty well now. But if a person is looking for a Kentucky sound, which is closer to a Gibson or traditional tone, he/she probably won’t like an Eastman.
    ...

  30. #18

    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Kentucky and Eastman mandolins are voiced differently in my experience. Just like Weber vs Collings. You will tend toward one or the other. Nice to have choice.

    To the OP, check back in a while. I'm curious as to how much you will play your Eastman when you are home and have the choice. I'm somewhat surprised how much I play my beater.
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  31. #19
    Registered User mee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Well I put new J74s on it and it was really sweet but I donít know if it was the radius finger board or what, I felt sloppy going back and forth between the 505 and the F9. Anyways I was glad to see someone snatched it up right away after it was relisted on GC website, hope it found its forever home. So now I am back on the lookout for my back up mandolin.

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  33. #20
    Registered User mee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Quote Originally Posted by Br1ck View Post
    Kentucky and Eastman mandolins are voiced differently in my experience. Just like Weber vs Collings. You will tend toward one or the other. Nice to have choice.

    To the OP, check back in a while. I'm curious as to how much you will play your Eastman when you are home and have the choice. I'm somewhat surprised how much I play my beater.
    I didn't play it at l after the first few days. I returned it

  34. #21

    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    If you think you'd like a very different flavor, give a Flatiron N1 a spin. Really sweet little mandolin that has a real high end richness to it.Not for all styles for sure, but you get a real quality feeling from one.
    Silverangel A
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  36. #22
    Registered User lflngpicker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eastman MD505

    Congrats on your great back up mandolin. Hard to beat Eastman MD505 for tone, fit and finish. A nice complement for your F9!
    Dan Brooks

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