Which Masterbilt, help?

Discussion in 'Epiphone Guitars' started by Hornet75, Oct 9, 2021.

  1. Hornet75

    Hornet75 New Member

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    Hello all, I’m brand new member in hopes I can get some help and good advice. Thanks in advance!

    Short version; I own one of the beautiful DR 500 CME guitars. I love it but at 65yr old it feels big to me now that I also have a Martin Junior dread. Yesterday I noodled around with the new Texan at local GC. While large also it feels smaller??? (I cannot find any specs comparing both). The Texan neck feels chunkier which I like but read it’s actually narrower at nut??? In any case, would I make a mistake selling the DR or trading towards the Texan? Appreciate anyone thoughts on this. I’m still technically probably considered an advanced beginner but with knowledge of an intermediate.

    2nd ?, how does the Masterbilt J45 compare with the two both sonically and playability?
    thx, Ol’ Hornet “75”
     
  2. soulman969

    soulman969 Well-Known Member

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    Not owning any of the three all I can do is observe the differences between them as far as their specs go and make some educated guesses. I do own an AJ-220 SCE which is at least somewhat similar to your DR 500 CME in specs in that both have a 25.5" scale length and a Mahogany neck with a SlimTaper "D" profile and 1.68" nut width. I believe their dimensions are the same but can't confirm that.

    I believe the basic reason for the Texan's neck to feel "chunkier" is that it's a '60s SlimTaper "C" profile so a bit deeper top to bottom having a more rounded "feel" to it whereas the "D" profile is flatter along the bottom and shallower top to bottom. But both share a similar nut width of 1.68"-1.69" or 42.67-43mm. It's also possible the Texan's body may be slightly smaller that that of the DR 500.

    The biggest differences in the J-45 would be it's 24.72" scale length and what I believe is a slightly different body shape and dimensions. The neck profile should feel more similar to the Texan than to your DR 500 or my AJ-220. Since the DR 500 and AJ-220 seem to be based more off of a 1930s style body overall the J-45 body style which followed those may feel somewhat smaller. :dunno:

    It's possible the J-45 with it's shorter scale length may feel easier to play but that's pretty much a matter of personal preference. I think you'd have to play both to know which you prefer.

    Sonically there should be some differences as well based on both that and body style and bracing but how much different and in what way I can't say. So again, play each to find which you prefer.
     
  3. Dale A.

    Dale A. New Member

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    Check out the new Inspired by Gibson J-45. I got one and I love it. I own a Martin D-18 GE (love it) a Morgan DR (love it) and a Seagull Entourage sp (love it) but the J-45 has become my main guitar.
     
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  4. soulman969

    soulman969 Well-Known Member

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    That's probably a direction I will eventually head in. I chose the AJ-220 just to get a sense of whether or not I'd like what Epiphone had to offer in the way of a round shouldered model.

    However, I'm finding that I prefer the shorter 24.75" scale length and the more rounded "C" neck profile so either the J-45 or J-45 EC is probably a better choice in the long run.

    Another option are some of the newer Taylors which I'm more accustomed to but are also significantly more expensive. I haven't really decided other than to begin closer to the bottom price wise and work upward from there.
     

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