Beautifulrinneby wrote: ↑Tue Mar 06, 2018 5:47 pmHere's one of the first Japanese classical guitars I bought: A Ryoji Matsukoa No.20 (Kohno Style) from 1972 with original label and hand written signature in blue ink. I think these hand written (not printed) labels were used until 1974 or 1975, but I could be wrong. As you can see this guitar is pretty beaten up. However, the original orange lacquer was removed and now replaced with a thin layer of schellack, but nothing was done to "improve" the looks, or make it look new and shiny again. Sound wise it's very mature and actually pretty loud. A woody kind of sound, with quite bold trebles. The scale is 650/52 mm and the action is 4/3 mm with room left on the saddle, no cracks or repairs. Solid spruce top and laminated Indian rosewood (or possibly some kind of straight grain CSA) back and sides. The double reinforcement strips on the back of the neck is a nice touch and probably the reason why the action is still is OK.
All the best from Sweden
Great picture! No need to fell dissatisfied though, surely you don't need two guitars with double reinforcement strips By the way, I use La Bella 2001 Medium Tension on my No.20, it's a good fit.James A. Showalter wrote: ↑Tue Mar 06, 2018 6:31 pmI wish my 1972 Ryoji Matsuoka, No. 18 looked as nice as the No. 20 Jon is showing. It has the same label, a single reinforcing inlay of ebony in the neck, a cedar top with Indian rosewood back/sides, no center strip on its back. It appears darker possibly because it still has the original finish and has lived in the moist south US probably all of its life which may contribute to the dark color. As far as sound I would say it is tonally very similar to the description by Jon. I like the guitar sound very much and am 60/40 right now convinced that it doesn't need to be resurfaced. It's wearing its age well.
I've only played one GC-12 and some other new Yamaha's, and I think the Matsuoka's (regardless of model and year) are better. But then again, I like the sound of older instruments. However, the older Yamaha's from the late 60s and 70s are great. And the new top of the line of Yamaha's are very good instruments too.
As mentioned above, the guitars from the 70s and possibly even the 60s are your best bet, if you want to find an affordable luthier built guitar from Japan. Here is a short list to get you started:BreathingSince72 wrote: ↑Wed Mar 07, 2018 12:41 amGreetings All,
I own a Yamaha CG192C and I have to say that I absolutely love it! This model is the flagship of their midrange guitars. The warmth of the tones, the beautiful construction, the responsiveness of this beauty...for me, WOW! I also own a Suzuki Model 700. For a laminate guitar, it puts out a pretty good sound.
It was recommended that I pop on over here to check out an afofrdable Japanese built Luthier made guitar. Any suggestions?
Hi James.James A. Showalter wrote: ↑Wed Mar 07, 2018 1:40 amVictoria,
Your inquiry is of a nature to bring out the opinionated amongst us. In my previous posts I've alluded to my preference for the top Japanese guitar. Of course a proper opinion would only include the Luthier made guitars and I lean toward the designs of the offerings from the 70's, the "Golden Age of Japanese Guitar". If not an original then a high-end modern instrument in the Master's tradition. In summary, there are several well respected luthier's from that age but Kohno is King and Masaki Sakurai currently wears his crown.
Just my 2-cents.
Well, this question could also be asked in the Kohno/Sakurai thread. Anyway I will try my best to answer as I played a fair amount of Kohno's and Sakurai's from the 70s.Marco32 wrote: ↑Wed Mar 07, 2018 5:50 pmSpeaking about Kohnos from the 70s, how do you think they compare to Sakurais? Of course, the differences are more in the hands of the luthier as they are almost identical, but I’ve read that sometimes Sakurai used better woods.. price point aside, what are your preferences and why?