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Thread: The Loar LM400 or LM520

  1. #1
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    Default The Loar LM400 or LM520

    Looking to purchase a used mandolin and have it narrowed between The Loar LM400 or the LM520 but, open to others below the $500 mark. I am not sure the scroll has that much meaning to me but, I would like a nice clear/bright tone. I do not play bluegrass since it is above my skill set. I do strumming of chords for my own entertainment.

    I had The Loar 310 that I didn't like. Not very clear toned, I thought. I think the best sounding mandolin I have owned was a Kona oval hole A style. So my bar is pretty low.

    I have been eyeballing a used LM600 from the guys at zephyr_surplus on ebay but a little afraid of what these seconds would sound like. I am not too terrible troubled by cosmetics.

    What say you Cafe?

  2. #2

    Default Re: The Loar LM400 or LM520

    Quote Originally Posted by neilca View Post
    Looking to purchase a used mandolin and have it narrowed between The Loar LM400 or the LM520 but, open to others below the $500 mark. I am not sure the scroll has that much meaning to me but, I would like a nice clear/bright tone. I do not play bluegrass since it is above my skill set. I do strumming of chords for my own entertainment.

    I had The Loar 310 that I didn't like. Not very clear toned, I thought. I think the best sounding mandolin I have owned was a Kona oval hole A style. So my bar is pretty low.

    I have been eyeballing a used LM600 from the guys at zephyr_surplus on ebay but a little afraid of what these seconds would sound like. I am not too terrible troubled by cosmetics.

    What say you Cafe?
    For $500 there's a selection of better (IMO) makes available. If you're strumming chords, and oval hole might suit you better. I would seriously recommend buying something from one of the sponsors here vs. eBay or purely on price, for the setup alone. Several nice ones at around $500. Even an Eastman 305 or 304 has a sticker price right at $525, or a Kentucky model M250 or M272 at $499. My $.02.
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  4. #3
    Registered User J Mangio's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Loar LM400 or LM520

    For 99. Over your budget, you can have a new LM400 w/ 5year warranty from folkmuscians.com. The 400 is the top of the A style line.
    2020 The Loar Supreme LM700 VS

  5. #4
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Loar LM400 or LM520

    Quote Originally Posted by keith.rogers View Post
    If you're strumming chords, and oval hole might suit you better.
    I’ll do you one better and say that for someone not looking to play bluegrass, a $500 budget can buy you a lifetime used flattop mandolin.
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    Default Re: The Loar LM400 or LM520

    Quote Originally Posted by pheffernan View Post
    I’ll do you one better and say that for someone not looking to play bluegrass, a $500 budget can buy you a lifetime used flattop mandolin.
    I have a Hora octave mandolin that I have tuned dD-gG-BB-EE. It is fun to play and projects very well. I have been looking for other flat tops but, nothing really strikes my fancy. Are there any flattops mandolins with a guitar body, seems all I could find were octaves.

    Is there no love for The Loar?

  7. #6
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    Default Re: The Loar LM400 or LM520

    I ended up buying a used Kentucky KM-174. Oval hole A-style. Need to clean it up, change the strings and do a setup but with years old strings it sounds pretty awesome. Great addition to my collection.

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