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Want to buy my first and only Gypsy guitar. Decent budget



  • saxguysaxguy Los Altos, CANew
    Posts: 17
  • mmaslanmmaslan Santa Barbara, CANew
    Posts: 87
    I've heard good things about Moustache, but I haven't played one. Schoenberg in Tiburon CA carries them.

    As for the Collins, the price is not that much lower than what he was charging for his standard model when he started a few years ago, which was $2000 US. I wouldn't assume anything about the guitar on the basis of the price. I have an oval hole from his first batch--no. 105--and it sounds great. But I wouldn't buy any used guitar without a trial period.
  • KoratKorat NetherlandsNew
    Posts: 51
    When you get to 4K or above there are lots of choices. Park, AJL, vintage Favinos, Collins, Eimers, etc.


    A guitar built by Leo Eimers is expensive, but not as expensive as stated.
    They start at around EUR 1800 when delivered outside of the EU , price excluding shipping however.
    For EUR 4000 you can purchase the Stochelo Rosenberg Signature.
    This model is made of birdseye maple, hence does not sound like the 'standard' Selmer. It has a more piercing sound.
    Check out the Eimers website for the exact prices.
    If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you.
  • mandovoodoomandovoodoo Tennessee USANew
    Posts: 1
    saxguy wrote:

    I need a guitar (and case) and am ready to settle with a new one along the lines of the Draelon Samois ( ... amois.html). I want it to be a looker and a player without it costing more than $3,000. . . .

    I want an authentic sound, great projection and perhaps re-sale value that can hold well. Also, it should really respond well to what you put into it across the range of the instrument.

    The Samois you point to is a wonderful guitar, but it isn't (as others have pointed out) a selmer type guitar! Construction, wood quality, design etc are superlative. But the arched top and back give a different character. The players I've heard on it really like it, but it isn't going to be anywhere near the same thing as a flat top!

    One just came up on eBay at $1250 new, so that's a really good deal.
  • Bob HoloBob Holo Moderator
    Posts: 1,252
    Actually the real truth is that Selmer did a much better job making wind instruments than guitars... which was more or less a fluke. I have seen and played a couple real Selmers and just about any asian guitar I played sounded better... I'm not alone in this opinion...

    "Hello and welcome to In association with Vintage Strings we are currently producing what many believe to be the most authentic sounding 'Model Jazz Selmer' replica guitar available today.
    Using the original Selmer drawing plans, over 30 years listening and playing experience of classic Selmer guitars, and first class manufacturing techniques, we have faithfully reproduced not only the sound and look of the original Selmer Model Jazz guitar, but also the 'feel' of the instrument.
    Authenticity has been our motivation from day one and no detail has been overlooked...."
    You get one chance to enjoy this day, but if you're doing it right, that's enough.
  • manoucheguitarsmanoucheguitars New MexicoNew
    Posts: 199
    Yeah, okay, but my point is that guitars from the same manufactuer can vary from guitar to guitar. I have talked to a couple Selmer owners who think their guitars sound awful... I showed a Manouche to a guy who said "Wow that looks just like a Selmer... I hope it sounds better than one..." (It did according to him) I would bet that if Selmer made guitars today, they would probably sub them out to Asia like everyone else.. just my marketing experience talking... but nearly everyone (professionals excluded) who asks about a guitar will ask two questions... where is it made and how much does it cost... remember that Selmer made what, 1000 guitars in two decades? Gitane puts out that many in a few months... and cheap, which is why people continue to flock to Saga-Mart.
  • ElliotElliot Madison, WisconsinNew
    Posts: 551
    We may actually get a chance to hear one of said Selmers this Friday. The new variation of American Idol this season will be featuring bands, and from the 3 seconds I saw of the promo there was a flutist with a bass and a guy playing what looked like either a Selmer or a Busato. I get the feeling they're not going to be in the 'winner' section, either. I just hope they're not playing Gypsy Jazz. :roll:
  • Bob HoloBob Holo Moderator
    Posts: 1,252

    I've played Selmers and I'll take my own advice on how they sound.

    For the sake of honesty on this non commercial enthusiast powered board, if you don't like Selmers - if you have so much venom for them that you need to talk them down - then at least have the courtesy to distance yourself from Selmers entirely, admit your guitars don't sound like them and make a case for the sound of your guitars as being something you believe to be superior to Selmers. And if you go that route, then take the marketing jargon down off your site about about your 30 years of combined experience to exactly duplicate their sound. If you don't like the way they sound and your guitars don't sound like them, then be clear about that. But in any case, show them the respect they have well earned. The luthiers at Selmer created the amazing tools with which this great form of jazz was birthed. We ALL owe them respect and gratitude.
    You get one chance to enjoy this day, but if you're doing it right, that's enough.
  • ElliotElliot Madison, WisconsinNew
    edited October 2007 Posts: 551
    Geez, Bob....

    Marketing ethics aside, he didn't say they were as good as Torres, for heaven's sake. For what they are, Selmacs are a great idea for an interesting hybridized guitar, but compared to what the Spaniards were making at the time they were the K-Mart specials of their era. In fact you could say they pioneered the cheap guitar. Here's a quote from an article on the history of French guitar making from the Classical Guitar Store:

    French builders generally could not produce this type of guitar in solid wood of the highest quality which required special techniques as well as special procedures for the marquetry and the purfling. They were accustomed to simple neck joints and rapid manual operations and so left that higher quality construction to the Spaniards. To satisfy the great demand, they turned out countless moderately priced guitars both at Mirecourt and in Paris.

    This is describing the state of the art mid century, when Selmer - who doesn't even mention that they ever built a guitar on their website (Selmer himself played clarinet) - was at it's peak. The minimal purfling observable bears this out. I am not sure what you meant by 'created amazing tools' - were they any different from the tools and molds that everyone else were making or using at the time?

    The Macaferri design is genius, no doubt about it. In fact, it is amazing how little one can do and get a Selmac sound. There was a guy from Japan online for a little while who took a Tele put a 670mm neck on it and nothing else except remove a pickup, and the damn thing had the Gypsy sound. It is the main reason why so many guitars can be built at low prices and still sound okay.

    So from the perspective of an outsider to the biz, while I have much sympathy for intangible values I somewhat chafe at the idea put forward (or at least implied) by virtually every builder and seller of Selmac guitars, namely that the pursuit of authenticity is a never ending climb justifying ever more outlays of cash until we arrive at the doors of the Selmeric Holy Grail with $15k in our sweaty desperate hands. I don't find that honest as well, as much as it does to create a market. In fact, I think someone can replicate a Selmer pretty darned well and keep it at around $2k if they are honest and put true quality ahead of profit, which is what Robert's concern does. Correct me if I'm wrong - I've never held a Selmer in my hands, but I've played against Daniel Givone's beautiful sounding '46 Selmer in my face almost every day for months and I haven't heard any aspect of the Selmer Sound that I am missing. As far as I am concerned Robert can say whatever he wants, because the Manouche has snookered the entire industry and he has plenty of laurels to rest on if he so chooses every once in a while.
  • scotscot Virtuoso
    Posts: 572
    I've played at least 20 Selmers of all varieties over the last 15 years and wonder of wonders, I have yet to play any inexpensive guitars from Asia I would prefer over any of these. Oddly enough, I also prefer the sounds of my Favino and Dupont to the sound of any of the Asian guitars I have played. And even weirder, I prefer the sound of my '55 Gibson J-185 to any of the inexpensive Asian flattops I have played. Of course, I've only been playing a little over 30 years - maybe I am missing something... Plus I have another problem - the cost and country of origin are the LAST questions I ask about a guitar.

    I do own a Saga and I agree it sounds OK - until you play it next to a guitar that really does sound good. There is a huge difference between a good guitar and a great guitar.

    Do you think people get excited buying their first Ibanez the way they do about buying their first Martin? Do people ask about the country of origin because they are excited about getting a guitar from Korea instead of France?

    "Sell the sizzle, not the steak" - ancient marketing maxim.
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