MARIO guitar?

Ramon Amira
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MARIO guitar?

Post by Ramon Amira » Fri Nov 10, 2017 5:06 pm

Does anyone know anything about a guitar labeled MARIO, with a little "Made in Japan" sticker on the back of the headstock?
It says model # M-45.

Ramon
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Ramon Amira
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Re: MARIO guitar?

Post by Ramon Amira » Fri Nov 10, 2017 6:34 pm

I came across this "MARIO" guitar for sale cheap. Never heard of it, and at a quick glance at a thumbnail photo it looked like a typical beater - nickel tuners, rosewood fingerboard . . .

Opened a larger photo and Whoa - here's a two piece back - bookmatched, with gorgeous wood. Might be laminated, but it sure looks good. Might be Cocobolo.

Bizarre looking label says "Handcrafted," which is basically a meaningless phrase in the context. Nothing else on the label, which anyone could make on a computer. This one is a curiosity. Wondering if anyone ever heard of MARIO guitars, if there is such a thing.

Ramon
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Last edited by Ramon Amira on Fri Nov 10, 2017 7:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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souldier
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Re: MARIO guitar?

Post by souldier » Fri Nov 10, 2017 6:41 pm

The resident Japanese guitar experts will be able to chime in soon.

This guitar definitely falls in with the rest of the Japanese made guitars probably coming from the 70's. A lot of guitars were being pumped out of Japan during this era and often operated under Spanish sounding names like "Cervantes". I've found a lot of these Japanese guitars to really perform well and above their price point. I'd imagine this one has double plate back and sides.
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Ramon Amira
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Re: MARIO guitar?

Post by Ramon Amira » Fri Nov 10, 2017 7:10 pm

souldier wrote:
Fri Nov 10, 2017 6:41 pm
The resident Japanese guitar experts will be able to chime in soon.

This guitar definitely falls in with the rest of the Japanese made guitars probably coming from the 70's. A lot of guitars were being pumped out of Japan during this era and often operated under Spanish sounding names like "Cervantes". I've found a lot of these Japanese guitars to really perform well and above their price point. I'd imagine this one has double plate back and sides.
Yes, it's bound to be laminated back and sides, and yes, I've come across many made in Japan guitars from the seventies, and most of them, as you said, really are better than other guitars in the same price range.

Ramon
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rinneby
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Re: MARIO guitar?

Post by rinneby » Sat Nov 11, 2017 4:17 pm

This was a indeed a guitar made for export. Most likely from the 70s or early 80s as souldier says. I wouldn't have to much faith in it, maybe if it is really cheap, as in under 100 Euro, or you need some firewood for the winter. Looks like Zebra wood to me, but could very well be some other sort of CSA as well. Cheap tuners and I'm 99,9% certain it's laminated, with a little luck the top could be solid. My guess is that this guitar comes from the Ibanez/Tama factory, but it's a student model. The label screams "cheap", there is no Japanese luthier called Mario, and it's not Mario Beauregard for sure ;)

All the best from Sweden
/Jon
1977 - Kuniharu Nobe No.15
1997 - Dragan Musulin
2004 - Alain Raifort Grand Concert
2006 - Casimiro Lozano XXV Aniversario

Feel free to ask me anything about Japanese classical guitars.

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Re: MARIO guitar?

Post by MessyTendon » Sat Nov 11, 2017 4:52 pm

Underneath that back veneer is some white wood...even my prized Brazilian rosewood Aria...is...three ply :(

I can't say much...most likely Gakki or Nagoya...those the are the big two makers. For what it's worth many of these cheap japanese guitars sound good.

Did you reach in the soundhole and feel the braces? If they are square rectangular braces without any shaving, then you've got lower on the pedigree.

If they are scalopped or shaven down in anyway it would be a more midrange model.

My low end Aria that I just acquired is giving me great sound and I have to scratch my head why so many mass produced guitars today have to cost so much and sound so bad.

Have fun with it. Now here's another kicker...some of these lower end Japanese guitars have laminated spruce tops, that are seeming solid...you really have to squint and look to see the ply's of wood. The attention to detail on the lower end instruments boggles my mind.

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Re: MARIO guitar?

Post by Ramon Amira » Sat Nov 11, 2017 4:58 pm

Thanks Jon -

As I mentioned, it looked cheap - tuners, label, etc., and I'm sure the back and sides are laminated, so I'm not expecting a closet Ramirez. But still it has a bookmatched back, and a remote possibility of a solid top. And it's $75. So for that I just wanted something for when I give Skype lessons, where inevitably the guitar gets banged against my computer desk, etc. Either that or occasionally I get a student with limited means who I give lessons to at a low rate, and I just give them a cheap guitar to help them get started.

Ramon
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rinneby
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Re: MARIO guitar?

Post by rinneby » Sat Nov 11, 2017 6:43 pm

Ramon Amira wrote:
Sat Nov 11, 2017 4:58 pm
Thanks Jon -

As I mentioned, it looked cheap - tuners, label, etc., and I'm sure the back and sides are laminated, so I'm not expecting a closet Ramirez. But still it has a bookmatched back, and a remote possibility of a solid top. And it's $75. So for that I just wanted something for when I give Skype lessons, where inevitably the guitar gets banged against my computer desk, etc. Either that or occasionally I get a student with limited means who I give lessons to at a low rate, and I just give them a cheap guitar to help them get started.

Ramon
Looking forward to the review!

All the best from Sweden
/Jon
1977 - Kuniharu Nobe No.15
1997 - Dragan Musulin
2004 - Alain Raifort Grand Concert
2006 - Casimiro Lozano XXV Aniversario

Feel free to ask me anything about Japanese classical guitars.

Ramon Amira
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Posts: 2970
Joined: Thu Nov 05, 2009 12:44 am
Location: New York City

Re: MARIO guitar?

Post by Ramon Amira » Sat Nov 11, 2017 8:21 pm

Well, I haven't bought this yet - I haven't heard back from the seller, but I'm just inquiring out of curiosity. For $75 I'm not worried about anything, I'll buy it no matter what, and I'll probably end up giving it to a needy student.

Ramon
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