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Author Topic: Walter Becker Model  (Read 6378 times)
ib2010
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« on: June 01, 2010, 01:22:30 PM »

----As soon as I plugged her in it was like, "Whoa-- so this is what the guitar can/should sound like". Hard to describe the "Pool" of rich sounds available in response to dynamic input. Could not be more PLEASED.-----
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IntenseJim
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« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2010, 05:57:09 PM »

I played on at Roger's shop. It was mind blowing.

I should probably get one but I'm pretty much swimming with his guitars.

The swamp ash +maple combination is a lot punchier and brighter (in a beautiful way) than my alder + red wood  Sadowsky tele with three Lollar P90s.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2010, 03:27:31 PM by IntenseJim » Logged

"I think the only repeat customer we have ever had is some Dr schmuck out in Reno." --Roger
jazzgtrl4
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« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2010, 02:57:54 PM »

that is killer, id love to try one
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sleepswell
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« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2010, 04:32:44 PM »

...my Becker is set to arrive tomorrow.  Pics to follow.

Although a bit nontraditional, the guitar is going to be strung with flats (12 on the high E) and played in a 50's or 60's era jazz setting -- think Pass, Ellis, Kessell, etc..

I'm so excited!
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IntenseJim
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« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2010, 04:48:53 PM »



I think my redwood Tele has some paternal bloodline running in the Becker guitar:




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"I think the only repeat customer we have ever had is some Dr schmuck out in Reno." --Roger
ib2010
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« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2010, 10:52:23 AM »

You're gonna love the pre-amp, i use the mid boost for  a small "thickening" of the tone, and use the gain to hit the amps front end harder, very usefull to get the tubes "talkin".  I have not touched the internal gain level as i find it ideal as set by RS. Enjoy the dynamics . s
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sleepswell
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« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2010, 12:01:12 PM »

I should start by saying that I hate buying new guitars.  I find the 'search' to be a distraction from practicing and gigging.  Further, I generally dislike having to modify/set up/etc new instruments once they arrive as this is a further distraction.  I've played guitar and bass for about 20 years on and off -- and over the past few years, I've been very intensely focused on straight ahead real book 50's and 60's era jazz.  I'm a huge fan of simple set ups and clean tones -- warm and not too overwhelming.  My heroes include Ray Brown, Carol Kaye, Joe Pass and Barney Kessel.

Now...before you ask... well, "why aren't you buying a freaking archtop?"  I strongly prefer the ergonomics of slab guitars.  Feedback is never a good thing, and for what it's worth, I'm convinced that with the right strings/pickup/setup, you can get a perfectly acceptable jazz tone out of a slab without the headache and fragility of an archtop.

I tried about 20 or 30 guitars (maybe more) before I ended up with the Becker.  When the Becker arrived, I was first a bit surprised at how much hum was coming out of the p90's when they were selected by themselves -- then I remembered that the level of quality of electronics with Sadowsky is so far beyond the other stuff I was trying.  This stuff needs to be fine tuned -- not set to extremes like so many of the factory instruments out there.  For the past 7 years, I've played one guitar with the vol pot all the way up, the neck pickup selected and the tone pot all the way down... go figure.

I spent about an hour exploring the tonal possibilities with the Becker, before I realized that 'my tone' is as follows:

-neck + mid
-pre-amp off
-vol at 90%
-tone at 5-20%

Now...that is some beautiful music.  The sound coming out of the slab with this setup is just... it's something special.  It almost reminds me of a warm rich piano tone.  Nothing short of remarkable.

I have been playing the guitar straight through my amp with flat eq.  The guitar is strung with flatwound Sadowsky 12's -- which are very nice strings.  I've been using George Benson Thomastik 12's for about 7 years, so I note some difference, but nothing so substantive that I would say one is 'better' or 'worse.'

My previous instrument had a radius of 400 mm.  I understand the Sadowsky to have a 12" radius or 304 mm.  My previous instrument had a nut width of 43mm.  The Sadowsky has a nut width of 42.8mm.  The frets are definitely a bit smaller on the Sadowsky.  To my untrained eye, I would describe them as 'medium' versus 'large' on my previous instrument.

The Sadowsky neck feels meatier than my previous guitar.  More of a classic shape -- modernized for comfort.  My hand always felt a bit big on my previous guitar.  I had two initial reactions to the neck overall versus my previous guitar:

- The string spacing and note clarity is a lot better on the Sadowsky with my hand size.  For example, some more elaborate jazz chords (my favorite fingering of Am7b5 or A7b9 as examples) are a lot clearer as there seems to be a bit more spacing between the strings.  I also seem to be able to fret chords in the upper registers with greater clarity.  Always a good thing.

-  At first, I felt like the neck was quite a bit 'slower'.  I realize though that this may be an unfair statement as I clearly needed to get some greater familiarity with the instrument.  After 2 days of playing the Sadowsky, I am fairly confident that whatever initial 'speed bumps' I was facing have been mostly dealt with and I'm every bit as fast and accurate on the Sadowsky as I was on my previous instrument.  Perhaps that initial reaction was more a 'getting used to' than a 'difference.' 

I still am convinced that the string spacing or fingerboard radius or something is GREATLY enhancing the note clarity.  Every little subtlety is much more apparent now.

So, I've really come full circle with the guitar.  My initial reaction was 'wow, quite a bit of buzz' to 'this may be the best darn guitar i have ever played.'  Quite an incredible instrument.

I should also add that the NYC Gig Bag that was included is by far the best designed gig bag that I have ever used/seen.  I was using a  sling bag that I really enjoy -- but there is no comparison.  These guys make incredible stuff.
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P. Bass
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« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2010, 12:50:34 AM »


Every so often when I need a "tone fix" I put on Steely Dan's DVD "Two Against Nature" & slap on my Sennheiser HD600's. The tone coming off Walter's guitar on that audio, is something EXTRA special! I'm convinced the rosewood board is a major source of the cream. Can anyone provide a link to examples of his sig. Sadowsky?
Thanks,
B.
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