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  1. #1

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    Just as I like country sounds but not so much country music, I dig semihollow fusion guitars but not so much fusion (except I love Scofield; also yes, I know you can play fusion on Strat, tele, LP, etc.). I have two cheaper but solid fully hollow guitars so I am looking for something where I can add gain and not have it start to howl...

    So... thinking in the $1500-$3000 range, this is what I'm looking at... any good/bad experiences?


    • Ibanez Scofield $2999 - seems perfect; pricey though...
    • Yamaha SA2200 $1999 - seems like you get most of the Sco model for $1k less?
    • Gibson ES-335 - these used to be out of my price range, although given that I've bumped it up, might be possible...
    • PRS fully hollow $999 - I need something that doesn't feedback, although these seem to be feedback resistant...? Could I crank this guitar? Are folks happy with this? I have a PRS SE Baritone that is absolutely impeccable. PRS doing an amazing job with the affordable 2nd tier type guitars.
    • Comins GCS-1 - $1699 - seems nice, although I am thinking something a little higher end. I know a lot of people here like these.


    Open to suggestions! Thanks!

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  3. #2

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    I'm waiting for the Ibanez JSM20TH to be manufactured.
    It seems to be the guitar that I can fall in love with.

  4. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by tomems
    Just as I like country sounds but not so much country music, I dig semihollow fusion guitars but not so much fusion (except I love Scofield; also yes, I know you can play fusion on Strat, tele, LP, etc.). I have two cheaper but solid fully hollow guitars so I am looking for something where I can add gain and not have it start to howl...

    So... thinking in the $1500-$3000 range, this is what I'm looking at... any good/bad experiences?


    • Ibanez Scofield $2999 - seems perfect; pricey though...
    • Yamaha SA2200 $1999 - seems like you get most of the Sco model for $1k less?
    • Gibson ES-335 - these used to be out of my price range, although given that I've bumped it up, might be possible...
    • PRS fully hollow $999 - I need something that doesn't feedback, although these seem to be feedback resistant...? Could I crank this guitar? Are folks happy with this? I have a PRS SE Baritone that is absolutely impeccable. PRS doing an amazing job with the affordable 2nd tier type guitars.
    • Comins GCS-1 - $1699 - seems nice, although I am thinking something a little higher end. I know a lot of people here like these.


    Open to suggestions! Thanks!
    You can't go wrong with a 335 or an A200. I haven't played the others on your list so can't comment. If you're willing to consider used guitars, you can definitely find them online in your price range. Other possibilities:

    • Gibson ES 333, ES 137, ES 135, Midtown Standard
    • D'Angelico EX DC (I have one and am very happy with it)
    • D'Angelico EX SS (I played one and like it a lot)
    • Epiphone Elitist ES 335 (also Sheraton and Riviera)
    • Any of the MIJ Ibanez semi-hollows from the 80s and 90s that were lower models than the AS 200 (e.g., AS 180, AS 100, AS 80)
    • Seventy-Seven Exrubato
    • Eastman (several different models)


    John

  5. #4

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    Only you know what feels best! But ES-335,339 type is your best bet.
    Also PRS Hollow body is another great choice.

  6. #5

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    If it were me, I'd jump on Gitfiddler's PRS SE Hollowbody II for sale down the page. Stunning guitar at a great price. No affiliation.

  7. #6
    I have a 355, so albeit a biased opinion, any of the 33Xs would be my suggestion. To me, a 33X is the most versatile guitar around.


    Good luck and

  8. #7

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    If you like the Ibanez Schofield, then try to find an early 1980/81 Ibanez AS200 which was the origin of this model. I have a 1980 and it is perfect for both fusion and blues. I think I paid about 1700 Euros 4 years ago.
    Best semihollow fusion guitar on big (but not unlimited) budget-1-wehvuib-jpg

  9. #8

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    If you can try one, give the Eastman Romeo an audit. It is remarkably twangy on the bridge pickup, yet very smooth on the neck pickup. It's very light, resistant to feedback, airier than most semi's (it only has a small block under the bridge) and it is high-end.

  10. #9

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    Yamaha SA2200 is the guitar I regret selling, more than any others. It's pricey nowadays, so look for used ones. But to blur a picture a bit: any of the suggested guitars will work. Your fingers matter the most. The guitar is an interface in the signal chain, which you can tweak in so many ways.

  11. #10

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    You didn't mention neck profile, pickups, weight, block type, or anything else beyond brand and cost. Maybe step back and revisit basic requirements?

    My recommendation: Used Eastman 186MX. Solid woods. Nitro finish. Quality hardware. Have to like a 1.75" nut. Laminates just don't sound the same. Seems the price keeps going up though.

  12. #11

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    Seventy Seven Exrubato.

  13. #12

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    Talking about biased opinion : Gibson ES-339
    Used will keep your budget

  14. #13

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    If a 335 is in the running, you really should look at a Heritage 535 as well, imho.

  15. #14

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    I'm gonna throw in a uncommon suggestion: Peavey JF-1.
    These are pretty cheap as they fly under the radar. What i like most about these is that the neck has a slightly different angle, which is extremely comfortable to play.
    Best semihollow fusion guitar on big (but not unlimited) budget-img_20210211_132400-jpg-540x540_q85_autocrop-jpg

    Paul

  16. #15

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    Used ES-335s are easily in your price range. I recently purchased a 1997 dot for $2200 (including tax).
    Last edited by RobbieAG; 03-05-2021 at 06:15 PM.

  17. #16

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    So, I'm not really sure what a "fusion guitar" is for someone who doesn't want to play fusion ... however ... If you're looking for a guitar (non-tele/LP) that you can crank up and not worry about feedback, Rob Engel makes what you want. He designs his guitars for that, and they're wonderful instruments (with a funky shape, that I like). There have been used models on Reverb recently well within your budget.

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spook410
    You didn't mention neck profile, pickups, weight, block type, or anything else beyond brand and cost. Maybe step back and revisit basic requirements?

    My recommendation: Used Eastman 186MX. Solid woods. Nitro finish. Quality hardware. Have to like a 1.75" nut. Laminates just don't sound the same. Seems the price keeps going up though.
    neck profile - any
    pickups - humbuckers (I like singles too but not for this particular purchase)
    weight - any
    block type - very interesting question. Seems like the Eastman and the PRS are semi-semi-hollows... with a big block but not, you know, the whole 2x4... I wish I could have 5 minutes with the PRS and any OD pedal and test it out...

  19. #18

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    Yamaha products are generally good values, although I don't know that particular model.

    I play a GCS-1. I got the idea from Jack Wilkins, who makes it sound great. Yotam Silberstein too, among others. I don't see anything low end about it.

  20. #19

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    Check out the B & G Lil Sister Crossroads.
    B&G Little Sister Crossroads – The North American Guitar

  21. #20

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    One not yet mentioned: The Seventy Seven Albatross. Mine was the custom, with P90s. On the smaller side. Jack Z. demoed the HB version (the Jazz) in several great clips. Here's the P90 version:



    That's one guitar I regret selling. It felt right, sounded right. A distinctive, classy semihollow.

    Another semi I can recommend is the Epiphone Elitist '63 ES-335. I found one used for a friend of mine, who loved my '66 ES-335. The stock p/us (57 classics) were IMO too hot, so I had a pair of Seth Lovers swapped in. That Epi ended up feeling and sounding rather close to my old 335. A well built, great sounding instrument.

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar
    Yamaha products are generally good values, although I don't know that particular model.

    I play a GCS-1. I got the idea from Jack Wilkins, who makes it sound great. Yotam Silberstein too, among others. I don't see anything low end about it.
    Yotam and Jack are both excellent. I do like Comins GCS-1(SE). I nearly bought a spruce 1SE a few years ago but held off. At this point I'd probably get the 1 with the maple top. It's definitely under consideration. Two negatives in my brain... a just OK review of the GCS-16 jazz box in premier guitar... and also there seem to be more on the used market than there used to be... could get a good deal on one but makes me wonder why people are parting with them. Ever see a Strymon Flint used for sale? Occasionally yes but with great gear people seem to hang on to it...

    Here's Jack and a GCS-1SE:


  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by mad dog
    One not yet mentioned: The Seventy Seven Albatross. Mine was the custom, with P90s. On the smaller side. Jack Z. demoed the HB version (the Jazz) in several great clips. Here's the P90 version:



    That's one guitar I regret selling. It felt right, sounded right. A distinctive, classy semihollow.
    No affiliation here, but there is a pretty, red, used Albatross for sales on Reverb.