We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
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andreas777
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by andreas777 » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:54 pm

rwe wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 1:25 am
rinneby wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 7:24 pm
One should only buy an instrument that speaks to you, vintage Japanese classical guitar or not. If we can play Spanish guitars from the 19th century, I'm pretty sure we can play Japanese classical guitars for at least 100 more years ;)
Yes, we can do this (or our grand-children...) But the Japanese instruments of the 1970s will not be so iconic as an old Spanish Instrument. That's what's important for the collector's market.
I remember some years ago there have been many old Yamaha GCs (from the 70s and 80s) and other Japanese luthier-made guitars for sale - and for a very low price. Now this has changed completely, you hardly find any of these guitars offered for a reasonable price, at least here in Germany. Today you even find online ads of guitar collectors who are explicitly looking for such guitars. (And I have never seen something similar for Spanish guitars.)
Currently I own more than 20 Japanese guitars and a few Spanish guitars (I sold most of my Spanish guitars.) My experience is that if, for example, you have a budget of €1000, and you compare a used Japanese guitar, often luthier-made, with a new Spanish factory guitar, then you get much more quality (material, build and sound) with the old Japanese guitar. It's a different story if you have a budget of €5000, but there won't be many old Japanese guitars on this price level anyway.
Happiness is when what you think what you say and what you do are in harmony.

rwe
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by rwe » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:39 pm

andreas777 wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:54 pm
My experience is that if, for example, you have a budget of €1000, and you compare a used Japanese guitar, often luthier-made, with a new Spanish factory guitar, then you get much more quality (material, build and sound) with the old Japanese guitar. It's a different story if you have a budget of €5000, but there won't be many old Japanese guitars on this price level anyway.
I agree, regarding the quality of the instruments. But as a "Babyboomer" I'm in the mid-50s and I will play guitar for 30 years or so. My children have no concrete emotional links to the Japanese guitars from the age of MY youth. Some instruments of the well-known Japanese luthiers (Kohno, Sakurai, great Yamahas) will be in the market also in 30 or 50 years, but the lower-priced instruments of the not so famous companies will not have the relevance in the market as they have today for us. We grew up with these instruments and they offered us good quality for little money. Just as some chinese (or other) companies do today to our children.

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eno
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by eno » Mon Mar 12, 2018 5:36 pm

andreas777 wrote:
Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:54 pm
My experience is that if, for example, you have a budget of €1000, and you compare a used Japanese guitar, often luthier-made, with a new Spanish factory guitar, then you get much more quality (material, build and sound) with the old Japanese guitar. It's a different story if you have a budget of €5000, but there won't be many old Japanese guitars on this price level anyway.
Totally agree. Above EU5000 Japanese guitars usually don't stand well compared to concert-level luthier-made Spanish guitars or from other countries. I talked to a well-known Japanese CG player Kozo Kanatani and he said that none of his guitars except for one 11-string are Japanese (he has Hauser II and Romanillos by the way). Similarly, Bream had a Kohno but once he said that he would be embarrassed to play a Japanese guitar in a concert. Based on my limited experience, I owned (and still do) and played a lot of Japanese guitars and many of them were great but none of them have even a chance to stand close to my Bernabe.
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Takamine C136S 1976
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967

richtm
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by richtm » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:02 pm

Totally agreed. I recently bought a Masuro Matano - a great guitar but compared to my Bernabé it's just not a concert level guitar. Maybe there are some Japanese of concert level out there, but maybe I have not met them or my musical taste is just not in this way. :bye:
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Ernest Köröskenyi 1977 Cedar; Pauline Bernabe Especial 2007 Spruce, 2012 Cedar; Andreas Kirmse 2017 Cedar DT; Philipp Lerche Torres 2018 Spruce

rpavich
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by rpavich » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:04 pm

richtm wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:02 pm
Totally agreed. I recently bought a Masuro Matano - a great guitar but compared to my Bernabé it's just not a concert level guitar. Maybe there are some Japanese of concert level out there, but maybe I have not met them or my musical taste is just not in this way. :bye:
This is making me want to buy a Bernabe!
Asturias AST-100-heavily modified by Robert England.

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rinneby
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by rinneby » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:17 pm

rpavich wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:04 pm
richtm wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:02 pm
Totally agreed. I recently bought a Masuro Matano - a great guitar but compared to my Bernabé it's just not a concert level guitar. Maybe there are some Japanese of concert level out there, but maybe I have not met them or my musical taste is just not in this way. :bye:
This is making me want to buy a Bernabe!
It's impossible to draw any conclusion out of such statement. One man's trash is another's treasure. My Ryoji Matsuoka No.20 for example sounds (to my ears) way better than many expensive guitar's I tried during the year. However, I also played many Japanese classical guitars that didn't sound as good and was much more expensive than the Matsuoka. As with everything, you need a little bit of luck and know what to look for.

/Jon
1964 - Masaru Kono No.7
1989 - Antonio Marin Montero (Bouchet)
2001 - Pascal Quinson
2017 - Tobias Braun (Santos Hernández, 1924)

Feel free to ask me anything about Japanese classical guitars.

Carter53
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by Carter53 » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:19 pm

I received my signed Osamu Sakamoto "Angel Model number 1002" this morning. Quite a mystery going here. Appears to have a solid top, back and sides. Asymetrical bracing pattern - possibly 6 fans, very nice interior kerfing, contoured sound-hole reinforcement (i'm just feeling around inside with my hands - haven't taken any pics yet),
Serial number inside is 707115 but I'm not familiar with his system, so I'm guessing it's a 1970's vintage instrument. Looks unplayed but has some dust inside. Buyee seller put new strings on it and I think new, lower-end tuning gears, which kind of surprises me. Old leather case has seams coming apart but very clean inside. The guitar's workmanship is very high. Action is very low. I may raise the nut. Plenty of saddle on it. It sounds good, resonant bass, good mids and trebles, but as I've only played it for an hour or so I don't believe she has revealed her true sound yet.
Finding out about this guitar will be great fun. Any information that can be provided will be greatly appreciated.
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1964 Sakazo Nakade "D"
1980 Kuniyoshi Matsui M-10
1980 Yukio Nakade 1000
1971 Masaji Nobe
1983 Asturias John Mills JM-15
1988 Masaki Sakurai Concert-R

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rinneby
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by rinneby » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:22 pm

Carter53 wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:19 pm
I received my signed Osamu Sakamoto "Angel Model number 1002" this morning. Quite a mystery going here. Appears to have a solid top, back and sides. Asymetrical bracing pattern - possibly 6 fans, very nice interior kerfing, contoured sound-hole reinforcement (i'm just feeling around inside with my hands - haven't taken any pics yet),
Serial number inside is 707115 but I'm not familiar with his system, so I'm guessing it's a 1970's vintage instrument. Looks unplayed but has some dust inside. Buyee seller put new strings on it and I think new, lower-end tuning gears, which kind of surprises me. Old leather case has seams coming apart but very clean inside. The guitar's workmanship is very high. Action is very low. I may raise the nut. Plenty of saddle on it. It sounds good, resonant bass, good mids and trebles, but as I've only played it for an hour or so I don't believe she has revealed her true sound yet.
Finding out about this guitar will be great fun. Any information that can be provided will be greatly appreciated.
Great find! The tuners might have been replaced, they look quite new. But who knows? :)

/J
1964 - Masaru Kono No.7
1989 - Antonio Marin Montero (Bouchet)
2001 - Pascal Quinson
2017 - Tobias Braun (Santos Hernández, 1924)

Feel free to ask me anything about Japanese classical guitars.

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eno
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by eno » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:35 pm

rpavich wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:04 pm
This is making me want to buy a Bernabe!
Bernabes are not for everyone, some people don't like them, but that's a different topic. But definitely give them a try when you have a chance.
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Takamine C136S 1976
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967

henders
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by henders » Mon Mar 12, 2018 11:51 pm

eno wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 5:36 pm

Based on my limited experience, I owned (and still do) and played a lot of Japanese guitars and many of them were great but none of them have even a chance to stand close to my Bernabe.
[/quote]

Not even close? You have a lot of nice Japanese guitars. What about a blind sound test? Your best three Japanese guitars and the Bernabe. One short piece or fragment, then a separate post identifying guitar a,b,c,d. Would be interesting.

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eno
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by eno » Tue Mar 13, 2018 12:50 am

duplicate
Last edited by eno on Tue Mar 13, 2018 3:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Takamine C136S 1976
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967

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eno
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by eno » Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:18 am

henders wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 11:51 pm
Not even close? You have a lot of nice Japanese guitars. What about a blind sound test? Your best three Japanese guitars and the Bernabe. One short piece or fragment, then a separate post identifying guitar a,b,c,d. Would be interesting.
Earlier in this thread I actually posted links to soundfiles of quite a few Japanese guitars plus Bernabe, but sorry, it's not a blind test. But having a fair quality sound recording equipment I was amazed how much the recorded sound is inferior to the live one. Most of the subtle beauty of the live sound is lost in the recording.
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Takamine C136S 1976
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967

rpavich
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by rpavich » Tue Mar 13, 2018 6:14 am

eno wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:18 am
henders wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 11:51 pm
Not even close? You have a lot of nice Japanese guitars. What about a blind sound test? Your best three Japanese guitars and the Bernabe. One short piece or fragment, then a separate post identifying guitar a,b,c,d. Would be interesting.
Earlier in this thread I actually posted links to soundfiles of quite a few Japanese guitars plus Bernabe, but sorry, it's not a blind test. But having a fair quality sound recording equipment I was amazed how much the recorded sound is inferior to the live one. Most of the subtle beauty of the live sound is lost in the recording.
Those are beautiful guitars!

It IS too bad that recordings just don't capture what these guitars sound like in person.
Asturias AST-100-heavily modified by Robert England.

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Beowulf
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by Beowulf » Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:38 pm

eno wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:18 am
henders wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 11:51 pm
Not even close? You have a lot of nice Japanese guitars. What about a blind sound test? Your best three Japanese guitars and the Bernabe. One short piece or fragment, then a separate post identifying guitar a,b,c,d. Would be interesting.
Earlier in this thread I actually posted links to soundfiles of quite a few Japanese guitars plus Bernabe, but sorry, it's not a blind test. But having a fair quality sound recording equipment I was amazed how much the recorded sound is inferior to the live one. Most of the subtle beauty of the live sound is lost in the recording.
Just a question: what playback system did you use to evaluate the recordings? More of that "subtle beauty of the live sound" may return with high level reproduction amplification and speakers.
1971 Yamaha GC-10 (Hideyuki Ezaki)
2017 Yamaha GC82S (Akio Naniki/Naohiro Kawashima)

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eno
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Re: We who love Japanese classical guitars - Delcamp

Post by eno » Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:57 pm

Beowulf wrote:
Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:38 pm
Just a question: what playback system did you use to evaluate the recordings? More of that "subtle beauty of the live sound" may return with high level reproduction amplification and speakers.
well, I have good speakers too but prefer good quality headphones like Coss but it's still not like the live sound. I guess to have a good recording of $5000+ guitar you need a $5000+ mic and audio equipment.
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Takamine C136S 1976
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967

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