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Thread: Pava Mandolins

  1. #26
    Registered User rdodger99's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by doc holiday View Post
    even if pava & tom didn't make mandolins, they'd be right up at the top of my list of the nicest people i've ever met.
    true that!!
    Rich
    2016 Blonde Pava Pro #197

  2. #27

    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Ahhh. Glad to find a bunch who have Pavas. I have a Collings that I have decided not to keep as the neck doesn稚 work for me. I知 a guitar and ukulele player and that v neck is uncomfortable especially with barre chords. I知 predominantly a strummer. I found a Webber neck to be more comfortable but I am extremely interested in a Pava. I知 not a bluegrass player. I知 wondering what the neck is like ? There are no mandolins down here so I知 trying to get a feel with out feeling. I realize this is highly subjective but wondering if anyone could shed some light ?

  3. #28
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Josh Levine View Post
    Having owned a Pava and an Ellis and having played several of both, I can say that they are quite different in my opinion. Both are spectacular mandolins by all accounts, but I do not get the feeling that the Pava is just a lacquered version of an Ellis. In my experience they both have their own distinct voices.
    I've owned two Pavas and an Ellis A5 and played all that I've come across. I agree with you 100%.

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  5. #29
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Wilson View Post
    I've owned two Pavas and an Ellis A5 and played all that I've come across. I agree with you 100%.
    Sure Mark, but which one did you keep?
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  6. #30
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Wilson View Post
    I've owned two Pavas and an Ellis A5 and played all that I've come across. I agree with you 100%.
    I have played enough Pava and Ellis mandolins that to MY ears there are differences in their voices and Ellis comes out a number of steps ahead ! But, I stress this is to MY ears !
    My two favorite pastimes are drinking wine and playing the mandolin but most of my friends would rather hear me drink wine! Adapted from quote by Mark Twain------supposedly !

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  8. #31
    Registered User Ivan Kelsall's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    I might shortly have the chance to compare my Ellis "A" style with the Pava "A" style purchased by a friend & fellow UK Cafe member last Friday. The strings were pretty shot on it,so i don't know what strings he'll be putting on it. I suggested EJ74's to begin with = easily available. If he doesn't like the tone,then i suggested GHS A270's as per my Ellis,but he'll have to get them from Germany.

    EJ74's didn't sound very good on my Ellis,so,if there's any significant similarity between the Pava & Ellis ''tonally'',then maybe the comparison might not be fair ?. At least we should get a ''ball park'' comparison of the 2,
    Ivan
    PS - The Pava in question.
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    Weber F-5 'Fern'.
    Lebeda F-5 "Special".
    Stelling Bellflower BANJO
    Tokai - 'Tele-alike'.
    Ellis DeLuxe "A" style.

  9. #32

    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    For y'all pava owners, do you know which tonegard fits a pava a5? The one i use for my eastman is too small.
    Pava A5
    Mid-Mo M4
    Eastman 305
    Eastman Mandola 315
    Trinity OM

  10. #33
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    You can slightly spread those fingers on the Tonegard that hold it onto the mandolin. Is it a huge difference?
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  11. #34

    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeEdgerton View Post
    You can slightly spread those fingers on the Tonegard that hold it onto the mandolin. Is it a huge difference?
    It's significant enough that I worry about damaging my pava. But i know tonegard makes multiple sizes.

    Think I might just give TMS a call. Thanks y'all.
    Pava A5
    Mid-Mo M4
    Eastman 305
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  12. #35
    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    I'm shocked that the Pava would be that much different in size. I've put standard Tonegards on everything from my Gibson F5G to Strad-O-Lins. If Dennis can't help you contact Cafe member tonyp. He makes them.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

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  14. #36
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Em Tee View Post
    For y'all pava owners, do you know which tonegard fits a pava a5? The one i use for my eastman is too small.
    The Standard Gard that I used on my Collings MT felt like a tight squeeze on my Pava as well, so I started using the Vintage Gard that I originally bought for my Gibson snakehead instead.
    1924 Gibson A Snakehead
    2005 National RM-1
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  16. #37
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Em Tee View Post
    For y'all pava owners, do you know which tonegard fits a pava a5? The one i use for my eastman is too small.
    I first bought my Tonegard to use on my Pava A-5 (#14) when I bought it new, and it fit great. I later sold the A-5, used the Toneguard on several other instruments I've since bought and sold, and now use it on a Pava Pro F5. It has fit on the Pava, a couple other A styles, a Sprite 2-point, and now the Pava F5. You can slightly adjust the side bars to get the proper fit, but it should fit with no problem.

  17. #38
    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    I've played a few of each (Ellis and Pava) too.... the standard is universally high on both of them. Very fine indeed. Superb work... lovely materials... I don't think they sounded identical, however... both superb, but some subtle differences to my ears at least.
    Gibson F5 'Harvey' Fern, Gibson F5 'Derrington' Fern
    Distressed Silverangel F 'Esmerelda' aka 'Maxx'
    Northfield Big Mon #127
    Ellis F5 Special #288
    '39 & '45 D-18's, 1950 D-28.

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  19. #39

    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by pheffernan View Post
    The Standard Gard that I used on my Collings MT felt like a tight squeeze on my Pava as well, so I started using the Vintage Gard that I originally bought for my Gibson snakehead instead.
    The traditional fits perfectly on my eastman, like a glove. It's a very tight fit on my pava. Glad to hear the vintage tonegard fits looser. Thank you for answering my question.
    Pava A5
    Mid-Mo M4
    Eastman 305
    Eastman Mandola 315
    Trinity OM

  20. #40
    Registered User seankeegan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Hi all, just to add my two cents...

    Recently visited Tamco in Brighton. I'm specifically interested in ovals, and tried out both the oval Pava and Ellis they had in stock. There was a noticeable difference between them. My girlfriend was with me and she's a v good musician. I got her to close her eyes as I flicked between the two of them repeatedly, and she picked out the Ellis everytime. I bought the Ellis.

    Now, they were ovals instead of f holes. Also the Pava was brand new and the Ellis was 2 years old, so this could account for some of the differences between them...

    I just ordered another ToneGard from Tony for the Ellis (I have ones already on an old 1918 Gibson A1 and Girouard oval) and Tony recommended the Vintage ToneGard for the Ellis. I assume Pavas have the same dimensions as they come from the same shop.

    S.

  21. #41
    Registered User rdodger99's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by seankeegan View Post

    Ellis (I have ones already on an old 1918 Gibson A1 and Girouard oval)

    S.
    How does the Girouard oval compare with the ellis?
    Rich
    2016 Blonde Pava Pro #197

  22. #42
    Registered User seankeegan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by rdodger99 View Post
    How does the Girouard oval compare with the ellis?
    Very favourably. They are both fantastic instruments, but quite different at the same time. The Girouard is REALLY powerful. Ridiculously powerful. It has amazing projection and cut, and a very focused sound, especially for an oval. It actually has bark as well! I mainly play Irish trad, and the mandolin can have difficulties being heard in a large pub session. Not this mandolin! Honestly, I've had it since the start of the summer and still can't get over the power of it. I've brought it to lots of sessions and festivals, and even in big sessions with lots of other melodic instruments playing the same tune and the same time, the mandolin still cuts and can be heard at the back of the pub. It's very light, much lighter than the Ellis, and when you lean into it, you can really feel the whole instrument moving air. Of all the mandolins I own, the Girouard benefits from a ToneGard the most. Again, I'm not sure if this is because they are so light, but with the ToneGard on it's an absolute rocket!

    The Ellis is quite different. I don't find it as naturally loud. Not that it's not capable of producing a loud sound or matching the Girouard in terms of amplitude, but seems to naturally voice at a lower volume and softer tone. The tone is much denser; a massive harmonic content, which produces a really sweet, warm and engaging sound. It is probably the most beautiful sounding oval hole arch top mandolin I've ever played (I have not played them all, but quite a few at this stage). But there's no way you'd hear it as clearly as the Girouard against half a dozen accordion players, a dozen fiddle players, couple of banjos, etc. It's just a thicker, warmer, more complicated tone, but not as naturally loud and not as much cut/projection.

    This is purely my view, based on my two instruments. I'm sure others might disagree if they were comparing them. I have every intention of doing a shootout between them and uploading a video to the Cafe with decent sound, but I'm back at work now after the summer, and I'm still waiting on some GHS A270s (Ellis' recommendation for his instruments - thanks to Ival K for the info for ordering them in Europe). Hopefully get it sorted in the next couple of weeks.

    So yeah, both great, but quite different. It's really difficult to put in to words, so sometimes it helps to liken it to something else. The Girouard 'drives' like this:

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    And the Ellis drives like this:

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    Both 'drive' a lot better than my 1918 Gibson A1, particularly up the neck, but still there's something very beautiful and 'comfortable' about the tubby sound those old Gibsons produce, especially when playing trad.

    P.S. i hope no-one reads my previous post and feels I was speaking derogatively about the Pava oval. It was a really beautiful instrument, and quite similar to the Ellis. I just thought that particular Ellis oval was one of the most beautiful instruments I've ever played. And at this level of craftsmanship, I don't think you could go wrong with an Ellis, Pava, or indeed a Girouard. I count myself very lucky to have them both. Just my 2 cents.

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  24. #43

    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    I have only played one Girouard, and it was back to back with a Pava. I found it to be excessively bright, almost tinny. So much so that I asked the store guys if the strings had just been changed. You know that sound you get from a new set of very bright strings when you first put them on. A couple days later they mellow out. That's what I thought, but I was told no.

    I hope to try another some day, or go back and prove to myself my theory was correct. Beautiful mandolin though. The Pava was great.
    Silverangel A
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  25. #44
    Registered User rdodger99's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    I’m trying to decide on an oval. Have only been able to play a Collings MTO, and am interested in comparisons to both a Pava and Girouard oval.
    Rich
    2016 Blonde Pava Pro #197

  26. #45

    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Br1ck View Post
    I have only played one Girouard, and it was back to back with a Pava. I found it to be excessively bright, almost tinny. So much so that I asked the store guys if the strings had just been changed. You know that sound you get from a new set of very bright strings when you first put them on. A couple days later they mellow out. That's what I thought, but I was told no.

    I hope to try another some day, or go back and prove to myself my theory was correct. Beautiful mandolin though. The Pava was great.
    This is the tone indicative of a Girouard:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=Qsb0VFW3YoE

    Tone can be influenced by bright strings (Elixirs come to mind) and picks. That said, I've owned a lot of mandolins, and still do, including a gaggle of Girouards, and a Pava. The Pava was nice, but darker sounding than I would have liked. It's gone.

    Nothing harsh or bright about the sound of the Girouard at Lowe Vintage, in fact I'm going to give y'all 24 hours head start on this one, and then I'm having them send it to me.
    Good Advice: Play before you pay, and know your product and your market.

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  28. #46
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    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    Quote Originally Posted by Br1ck View Post
    I have only played one Girouard, and it was back to back with a Pava. I found it to be excessively bright, almost tinny. So much so that I asked the store guys if the strings had just been changed. You know that sound you get from a new set of very bright strings when you first put them on. A couple days later they mellow out. That's what I thought, but I was told no.

    I hope to try another some day, or go back and prove to myself my theory was correct. Beautiful mandolin though. The Pava was great.
    A Girouard tinny ??????? I find this unbelievable ! Of all the ovals I have played every Girouard was anything but tinny !
    My two favorite pastimes are drinking wine and playing the mandolin but most of my friends would rather hear me drink wine! Adapted from quote by Mark Twain------supposedly !

  29. #47

    Default Re: Pava Mandolins

    I found it unbelievable too, and have since come to believe it was either a string or setup issue. I just wish I could go try the three new Girouards in stock now, but alas, my hand has a lot of healing to do. More so because my experience contradicts the vast majority, but nonetheless, not a reason not to voice my experience.
    Silverangel A
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    1913 Gibson A-1

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