Carvin anybody?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by CerpinVolta, Dec 10, 2005.

  1. CerpinVolta

    CerpinVolta Member

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    I was contemplating getting a new guitar, and i have been looking at Carvin lately. I was thinking of either getting an SCS90 or one of their CTM models. I was wondering if anybodys had much experiance with Carvin guitars and what they thought. Im looking at spending up to around $1000 maybe a little more so if anyone has any experiance with Carvin or if you want throw other suggestions out there for a good axe it would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Dave.
     
  2. sosomething

    sosomething Member

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    My band mate just got a carvin CT4M, and I am blown away by it. It stands up next to any PRS (or similar quality guitar) I've played and in some ways exceeds them in terms of custom features for a fraction of the price.
     
  3. CerpinVolta

    CerpinVolta Member

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    Thanks for the info.

    Sorry for posting this thread, i didnt notice the very similar thread already posted about the CTM product line.

    Well if anyone has any experiance with the SCS90 model then that would be cool:)

    Thanks,
    David.
     
  4. Hardtail

    Hardtail Member

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    I've had a half dozen Carvins over the years. They represent the best "deal" available if you want semi-custom USA made guitar with high end figured wood. I like the ability to have a guitar made the way I want it & not just off the shelf like the ones everybody else plays. I love the look of the DC127 - it clearly has shred in its lineage, but not overdone. Historically, the thing that has turned most people off is the Carvin necks with the uber flat 15" radius ... that has all changed today ... you can order most any Carvin with a 10,12,14, or 16" radius (14" being standard on most models). In terms of fit and finish, Carvin's can NOT be beat in their price range ...

    HT
     
  5. Glowing Tubes

    Glowing Tubes Gold Supporting Member

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    I advise caution.
    I had heard many not so great reviews on them but decided to pull the trigger on this
    [​IMG]
    Played fine but sounded bright, brittle and just not good.
    Good thing they have a good return policy.

    Plus you'll get zapped on resale if you decide to sell it later on.

    You may find a much better guitar right here in the for sale section.
    Just a thought

    Good luck!

    RC
     
  6. Reeek

    Reeek Member

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    I own a CT6M and I like it a lot. I am contemplating a pickup change though
     
  7. bgmacaw

    bgmacaw Member

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    This is a typical complaint about their guitars, and, it's true. Carvins can be overly bright. This can be fixed by not using their pickups, which are also voiced bright, or by good amp and effects EQ settings. Also, they use 500k pots on everything which will make single coils bright.

    If someone is considering a Carvin I make sure that they know about this. Some people do like a bright sounding guitar while others don't.

    This isn't quite as true as it was 10-20 years ago. EBay has been the great equalizer for many non-Fender/Gibson brands and most used gear stores have followed suit. For example, I recently saw a Tele style Carvin in rather poor shape in a local used store for just $50 under the new price.
     
  8. Gary Ladd

    Gary Ladd Member

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    +1 :AOK

    Good advise...

    A friend of mine whose a studio cat & plays PRS exclusively recently returned a Carvin CTM flame-top he special ordered because he wanted stainless steel frets and read on the Carvin forum that it sounds and plays exactly like a PRS, but for 1/2 the price.

    He hated it right out of the box. Not only was it bright, but it resonated like crap and the neck felt strange to him...he sent it back the same day.
     
  9. jgraham

    jgraham Member

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    First off, why should it have to be 'fixed'? If its a common complaint, why don't they do something about it!

    I have a TL60 that I got used. It was heinously bright when I brought it home... the usual story... sounded good in the store... and I figured it was just the Carvin single coils. Yanked the electronics, routed for a humbucker, and tried 4 different pickups in that thing. Not as bright now, but it has NO low end whatsoever. Great for leads...haha... but not chunky. No girth. Gotta agree with Andersonguy 100%. Too bad, cuz it plays nice and is comfortable to wear. I have not tried any of their other models.
     
  10. Turbo Gerbil

    Turbo Gerbil Member

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    I've owned Carvin DC series guitars in the past and thought they were great guitars , but it depends on what you are looking for in sound. My experience with neck throughs ( not just carvins ) is that they tend to have a more "fundamental" tone, especially a maple neck through like the Carvins are. I like neck throughs for high gain sounds because they cut through all the stuff, but they arn't so good when playing cleaner generally, IMO. Most people seem to think that the CT series are warmer and rounder sounding than the DC's or other neck throughs, but I haven't had a chance to try a CT yet.
     
  11. Glowing Tubes

    Glowing Tubes Gold Supporting Member

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    I disagree.
    You cant fix something like that with a good amp, I have two great very different amps. You can eq it to death but why?
    What do they say, **** in, **** out?
    I really spent some time and tweaked with this guitar because I thought it played well and really loved the look. You cant eq out that kind of brittle sound, you may make it more tolorable but thats not what I would want to have to do to make a new guitar work for me.


    Im sure they have some very good ones out there but I was suprised on the low quality sound I got from this particular one.

    Im using my refund money to get a nice Hamer right here in the for sale section. :AOK

    RC
     
  12. Shemp

    Shemp Member

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    I've played a couple of carvins over the years and have never considered buying one. They only offer one neck carve and it's too thin for me. The guitars are very bright. I didn't care for the overall vibe of the guitar.
     
  13. axpro

    axpro Member

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    +1 on that, I had a bolt, and have tried a number of used pieces over the years and the thin neck is a big issue for me. It doesn't have to have a baseball bat for a neck, but i don't dig that thin "ibanez" style neck... way too thin foir me.
     
  14. reo73

    reo73 Member

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    I just bought a Carvin Bolt-T and think it plays and sounds great. I will admit though that I have never been a big guitar guy prefering to concentrate my GAS and attention on amps instead but this guitar plays and sounds better than the American made Fenders I have owned and my current Yamaha AES 620 and Ibanez S470. I don't consider it to be overly bright.

    [​IMG]
     
  15. nsriley

    nsriley Member

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    I posted this in another Carvin thread in here. I've recently(2 months ago) received my first Carvin, a CT6 with a Floyd Rose trem. It's my #1. My options were, the ebony board, abalone block inlay, quilted maple top, deep tigers eye finish with a cherry burst edge, the classic humbuckers, gold hardware, stainless steel jumbo frets, and the Floyd Rose with locking nut and strap lock system. Well first off I've owned too many guitars over the last 5 years, some being some $3000+ Les Paul Historics among others. After a while I decided to try the Carvin CT6 since I could order the options I wanted in a guitar. Well when I received the guitar after a 2 month wait I couldn't have been happier. Outta the case it was in perfect tune and was setup just like it should be. The over all build quality blew my mind. It was flawless! It's lighter than any light weight LP I've owned, and the unplugged tone is spectacular. Plugged in it just got better! I secretly call it my Les Paul killer! And I have always been a LP man, and still own one. But I can't put this Carvin guitar down. It plays like a dream, and sounds so sweet. And out the door I paid $1700, which is sweet considering it's better than some guitar I've owned that cost twice as much! I am not biased here either, this is my first Carvin, and after 2 months of playing teh crap out of it I am still very much in love! LOL! Here's a pic of mine:

    [​IMG]

    -Peace
    -Nate
     
  16. bgmacaw

    bgmacaw Member

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    People will do that for guitars they really like. Or, in some cases, just play it anyway and ignore the poor sound (I've seen this a lot with my favorite bug-a-boo, SD single coil sized humbuckers).

    I think a lot of it is the basic Carvin sound, which is a maple neck-thru with bright pickups that cuts through the mix or sounds brittle and bright depending on your point of view. As someone else said, I wish they would change this formula since they make some fine looking custom guitars for not that much money. I probably wouldn't buy one of their neck-thru models because of this although I would like to hear stories from people who tried something other than a maple neck.

    The Bolts are different since they're bolt-on. The only thing that really causes brightness there are the 500k pots on single coils and the natural voicing of the pickups. In my Bolt kit, I tried the stock pickguard group and it was too bright but when I swapped out the pots with 250k ones it toned down nicely.
     
  17. bikerdude2

    bikerdude2 Member

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    I would imagine they use that as a standard formula because it works for the bulk of their customers. I'll agree that they can be on the bright side, but having owned a DC400 with a Mahogany Body and Mahogany Neck Thru, and a ton of the Maple variants, I can say I noticed a giant difference in tone with the Mahogany for the better. As for the CT's, it's all personal preference. I find my CT's to be equal to the PRS's I've owned. Your mileage may vary.
     
  18. CerpinVolta

    CerpinVolta Member

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    Thanks for the info everyone. In regard to alot of their guitars being to bright, is that with all their woods or only with a perticular kind? What wood should i choose for a warmer tone? And are all of their pickups bright or just the stock pickups that the guitars come with? Would upgrading to some of their more expensive pickups help?

    Thanks,
    David
     
  19. ratkent

    ratkent Member

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    I can only speak from my experience with the one guitar I own from Carvin. I replaced the stock pickups with a Seymour Duncan Custom Custom (bridge) and Jazz (neck) and the guitar sounds great. I don't think the guitar is inherently bright but the C22 pickups certainly had a high-mid transient peak that was difficult to dial out. I played the guitar for a few months before making the switch and was hoping the problem was the pickups and it appears that it was. Like all of the CT4s, the body is mahogany with a maple top.

    [​IMG]
     
  20. carltonh

    carltonh Member

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    I own 2 Carvin guitars and a bass, and they are great. The most important advice I can give is that IF you get a neck through Carvin, DO NOT get a maple neck through. Either mahogany or koa neck throughs can be great. With that rule, then brightness probably won't be a problem, though you might still experiment with pickups. Next for advice is look for a good used one.
     

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