There is nothing quite like the feel or sound of Gibson Acoustic Guitars. If you are shopping for an acoustic guitar you’ll understand exactly what I mean when I say this, especially if you have actually had the opportunity to play one. There’s just one problem; the price!
If you are not shocked (as I was) at the price tag on most of the Gibson models then you are probably making a lot more money per year than I am!
Small size with mahogany sides gives great base - USED ONLY
Looks like electric guitar and with a banjo bounciness - USED ONLY
Remake of J-45 legend, arguably best acoustic guitar ever
Take the Gibson Zodiac acoustic guitar. This private reserve model has a MRSP of $17,000 (though most music stores sell it for decidedly less). But even models such as the Gibson 50th Anniversary 1960 Hummingbird (an excellent guitar by the way) or the Gibson Blues King will run you $4,600 and $3,000 respectively; prices that may have your eyes popping.
I don’t know about you, but I really don’t have that much extra money to spend on an acoustic guitar no matter how good the quality!
The real question then comes down to this; are Gibson acoustic guitars worth the price you pay? The answer lies in the quality of the tonewoods and workmanship.
About the Quality of Gibson Acoustic Guitars
All guitars that bear the Gibson label (not its subsidiaries such as Epiphone) are made in Nashville, Tennessee at Gibson USA (the Gibson manufacturing plant). Each of the guitars is made by hand using top quality tonewoods and a step-by-step construction process that results in superb tonal quality.
Honestly, when you compare real live Gibson acoustic guitars to the company’s lower quality counterparts, and indeed to many of their competition’s models, there is no comparison. In fact, I know plenty of musicians who will play nothing but a Gibson. But do you really need to pay thousands of dollars to get the Gibson quality of tone and its ease of playability?
The Real Value of Gibson Acoustic Guitars
Let’s face it. A Gibson guitar sells on its reputation (which is awesome). And being a company that is (of course) looking to make money, they are going to charge what people are willing to pay. But there are a number of smaller guitar companies out there that make handmade solid wood guitars for quite a bit less than the Gibsons or Martins of the world,such as those made by Washburn, Seagull and even Breedlove.
Mind you, the resale of these lesser-known brands is decidedly less than the better known guitars. With a Gibson, you can get a good bit of your investment back, especially if you sell your used guitar to a collector. Of course chances are that you won’t want to sell your guitar since you’ll enjoy playing it so much. But it can bring you peace of mind to know that if you really need to you can make back a good bit of the money that you spent.
So don’t feel that if you want an awesome quality guitar that you have to spend the small fortune that Gibson asks for its models. If playing is what is important to you, if tone and quality are your specifications, there are other options. However, if the thrill of actually owning and playing Gibson acoustic guitars brings you the same sort of satisfaction that it does for me, you just may want to invest. The choice, of course, is yours.
Review of the Gibson J185 Series
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