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Anybody care to comment on an R-6 vs a Coliiings 290?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by pedalcr8z, May 22, 2011.

  1. pedalcr8z

    pedalcr8z Supporting Member

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    I'm well aware the Collings build quality is in another league and I'm aware of the maple top being on the R-6. I'm also aware that the Lollar P-90's are probably better. I'm also painfully aware of Gibsons hit or miss set up however suppose you compared an excellent R- 6 vs the 290? What would the difference in sound be? Not sure what the maple top brings to the sonic experience? I love bottom end slam factor on power chords running through a Tweed furnace giving up the goods as well as inner detail clarity.
     
  2. mattymel

    mattymel Supporting Member

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    aesthetically i prefer the R6 all the way. put some lollar P90s, maybe a tonepros in it and you have a worthy adversary in every regard. i have a R4 and i wouldnt trade it for anything, collings are what. that being said, if collings made guitars that looked as good as historics, i would change my tune in a hurry. not crazy about how many improvements gibson leaves us with.
     
  3. XKnight

    XKnight Member

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    I've played a Collings 290 and I've owned a Gibson R6 and between the two I prefer the Gibson. Quality on the Gibson Historic line is top notch and the stock Gibson P-90 pups are very good too. Play both if you can and then choose the one that you like best.
     
  4. John C

    John C Supporting Member

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    Disclaimer - I am a 290 owner.

    I would say that comparing a 290 to an R6 isn't quite a direct comparision. While I wouldn't say "apples to oranges" I would at least say "granny smith apple to jonathan apple" comparison. A closer comparison to the 290 would be a Gibson Historic LP Special. The maple top and thicker body on the R6 is going to give it a different sound than an LP Special or a 290.

    You'll see a lot of discussion that the 290 is more "polite" than an LP Special; I'll agree with that assessment, probably due to the underwound Lollars on the 290. I've explained it like this - take an LP Special, put it in a stand on the floor, walk 10 paces and put down a Tele in a stand. Go back to the LP Special, take about a step (maybe 1 1/2 steps) toward the Tele and put the 290 in a stand. It's got depth, but it's just a touch "lighter" than the Gibson.

    Why did I wind up with the 290? Primarily the neck - it's a bit thinner than the typical R9 and similar to but slightly fatter than these new PRS "Pattern" necks. I've got small hands and stubby fingers and find the typical Gibson Historic necks on the R2s-R8s to be just too fat; the R9s are the largest Gibson neck that works for me.
     
    joesnewmatch likes this.
  5. DoctorBob

    DoctorBob Member

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    I have a Historic LP Special and a Collings 290. Both nice. The Gibson build is not inferior to the Collings on these models.I prefer the Gibson P-90's.Either model is suitable for that type of vibe. The LP Standard is a different version entirely. If I could have only one of the Special vs the 290, I'd take the Gibson
     
  6. teXum

    teXum Member

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    I played two R6s just before I bought my 290, and between those there were simply no comparison when it came to tone and playability (I've come to realize that it's kinda stupid to let a great guitar go because of looks - disclaimer, I also own an rather ugly quilted top Collings CL).

    The 290 was simply heads better than those particular R6s in resonance, livelyness, balance, "headroom", you name it. Arguably, Gibsons differ more, so if you can find a good one, go for it.

    However, I'll buy a Collings without playing it any day, Gibson not so much...
     
  7. pedalcr8z

    pedalcr8z Supporting Member

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    I rather doubt that!:drool
     
  8. ahab

    ahab Member

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    I prefer everything about my R6 to the two (or perhaps three) Collings 290s that I have played. The neck shape on my R6 is completely amazing; it's substantially larger and more rounded than the 290s. I prefer the gritty tone out of the Gibson P90s to the more polite, almost bland, sounding Lolars. Also, I do not like the body cuts on the 290 and I like the mass and weight of the R6. So, basically I prefer the feel and sound of the R6 over the 290. And, for what it's worth, the build quality of my R6 is outstanding.
     
  9. JimmyR

    JimmyR Member

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    Yeah I don't know why some guys rave about Lollar P90s. Bland comes pretty close to describing them for me. I actually like the Gibson P90s - certainly compared to Lollars. Lots more character and personality.

    I also agree that a Gibson may not always be a great guitar, but out of maybe a dozen R6s I have played in the last 10 years only one I didn't like. Right now I have a killer R4 and have no GAS for a Collings. The Collings are indeed beautifully built - some of the very best workmanship I have ever seen. I almost couldn't believe that it was possible to build a guitar so beautifully. Doesn't make it play or sound better though. My R4 has a great neck and plays incredibly well, even completely stock.
     
  10. teXum

    teXum Member

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    This is where I happen to disagree. The different neck angle, great fretwork and, IMO, nicer wood on the fretboard do, for me, make a Collings nicer to play, and their excellent selections of Honduran mahogany doesn't hurt either, in the tone department.

    Me, I really like the Lollar P90s, but I think there are a lot of other great options when it comes to HBs, I put a set of Throbaks in my CL - great.

    Surely, Gibson makes a lot of great guitars as well, we are incredibly lucky to live in an era with so many great options. As always, Different Strokes for Different Folks

    Its all well!
     

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