Carvin CA Carved Top vs. Anderson Cobra

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by robyogi, Jul 31, 2006.

  1. robyogi

    robyogi Silver Supporting Member

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    I've been looking for a shorter scale dual humbucker guitar that I can get with a trem and have narrowed it down to these two. Anyone have experience with both and able to comment on tone, build quality and consistency, playability, versatility, etc.? Is Anderson worth the extra money? Is Carvin worth the risk of buying without playing it first? Is resale something I should be concerned with?

    Also, I'm especially curious how they sound compared to other guitars that I may be more familiar with - e.g., Les Paul, PRS, and the "superstrat" types (25.5" scale, dual humbuckers with Floyds - like my Hamer Diablo). Thanks in advance folks!
     
  2. slowburn

    slowburn Supporting Member

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    well the anderson is way way more money, like double, so it's hard to say whether it's worth the extra cash, each person will have a different opinion. I've played through a few PRSi (similar to the carvin) and I've played through an anderson cobra (though not one with a trem) and each guitar has a different feel. to get an idea, I'd go out and play some PRS custom 22s with trems and then some fender tele jr's and keep in mind that the anderson will have a shorter scale than the carvin and that both will sound a bit more focused, with more fundamental than overtone than superstrats, but the trem should bring back some of stratiness sounds vs a les paul (no trem cavity).
     
  3. Monkeyboy23

    Monkeyboy23 Member

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    I can't speak specifically for that Carvin model, but I have a SC90 I bought in September that's fantastic. The necks are the same from model to model at Carvin and are very comfortable to me. The pickups sound good. I've found the build quality on my Carvin gear to be top notch (I have an amp as well).
     
  4. bobgoblin

    bobgoblin Supporting Member

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    monkyboy: what's the neck feel like? I hate skinny necks, & I've never played a carvin guitar, so I don't know if they're skinny or chunky. What say you?
     
  5. Juan J. Giol

    Juan J. Giol Member

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    Also, remember that Carvin has a 10-day return policy with most of their guitars (unless you order a crazy option that makes the guitar non-returnable). That should give you some confidence in trying them out without risking a ton of cash.

    Personally, I have never played an Anderson, but I suspect and expect the quality to be a little better since I guess it had more attention before it leaves the Anderson facility than Carvin's get when leaving their facility (this is based mainly on the fact that Anderson's cost more combined with my experiences with Carvin guitars I have received in comparison with other brands).

    Good luck with your decision.

    Regards,
    Juan
     
  6. slowburn

    slowburn Supporting Member

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    you thinking of ordering a carved top, bob-o?
     
  7. sosomething

    sosomething Member

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    I have a Carve Top - the neck isn't thin. It's a very comfy neck. I'd say only a little thinner than a PRS wide/fat, with a slightly broader string spacing.
     
  8. robyogi

    robyogi Silver Supporting Member

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    Thanks for the input so far. Below are the specs I received
    from Carvin regarding neck dimensions. The CTs are actually
    pretty chunky. The rep referred to the contour as a "soft D-shape."

    Guitars (1st fret) (12 fret )
    DC guitars (.79") (.87")
    CT models (.80") (.94")
    Bolt on's (.77") (.88")
    7 strings (.81") (.92")
     
  9. flicker180

    flicker180 Member

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    imho, they're in a different class altogether. Carvin makes great stuff, to be sure, but....there's something about Anderson that just pushes it beyond a commodity guitar. the fit, finish, attention to detail is unrivaled and i've ne'er had a problem with them. you can usually pick them up used for cheap and they make a great bargain (resell is great too if you buy 'em used). My cobra was one of the best guitars i've ever played and my hollow drop top is incredible also.

    Dave
     
  10. Steve L

    Steve L Supporting Member

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    I can't speak for the Carvin, but I have a Cobra that I've had and played for years that feels and sounds great. If you are considering the Anderson, I would also suggest checking out the Atom--their "newer" short scale model.

    I always feel that one can't go wrong with the Anderson's--they're in a different class. But of course it ultimately comes down to personal taste. And, you have to justify the additional expense!
     
  11. dpeterson

    dpeterson Member

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    i own 4 andersons, and they to me are perfect.

    dont forget being able to talk and interact with Tom himself very easily. Tom is one of the nicest guys you will ever meet. Very humble, and knowledgeable, not to mention a great player. I wish i knew as much as he has forgot over the years.

    dave
     
  12. UnderTheGroove

    UnderTheGroove Supporting Member

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    I'll agree with the comments that Anderon's are in another league. They are consistently well built and feel incredibly solid and sound great. I have a Cobra, and it's my main guitar.
     
  13. raz

    raz Member

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    This is all true, but nobody's hit the critical point here: the California Carved Top and the Cobra are different animals. Just because they have two humbuckers and the classic LP materials formula doesn't make them equivalent. Oh, and the California Carved top is different than other Carvin models too.

    The CT is a set-neck instrument, and the Cobra is a Bolt-On. The CT is a 25" scale, the Cobra is 24.75" scale. The pickups are of different specifications, and there are a bunch of pickup choices for each that can be specified and will change the sound. The Carvin has an ebony fretboard unless you order otherwise, the Cobra has a rosewood fretboard. The CT's have a different neck profile (though I don't know what the actual measurements are) and I don't see an option to order a different profile. The CT's have graphite reinforcement in the neck.

    Even the intent is really different. The CT's are meant to compete with PRS guitars, the Cobra...well, near as I can tell the Cobra is just the Cobra.

    I own a Cobra S that I'd never part with.

    I've played a couple of CT6's, one with the Ebony fretboard and 14" radius, one with Rosewood and 10" radius. Both the Carvins were excellent instruments. They sounded like Carvins, which is, generally speaking, a more agressive sound. It's got touches of the Lester sound, touches of the PRS sound. Carvin still has one foot solidly in the shred world and the other gets dipped in Country. The CT6's sounded very similar to the PRS Custom 24 I owned, with the predictable slight difference due to the pickup positioning. Were I to order a CT, I'd order it with the Rosewood fretboard because I haven't had good experience with Carvin Ebony boards. I've owned three, all three developed small splits. The Carvin neck profile is still too thin for my taste. I preferred the 10" radius to the 14".

    The Cobra is just...different sounding. More midrangey. Less bottom end. Mine is sweeter sounding than the CT's I've tried, which doesn't mean better...just more attractive to me for what I do.

    The Cobra isn't at all as similar to an LP as the scale length, materials and dual humbuckers might suggest...the effect of the bolt-on neck. (All the Lester guys are nodding their heads vigorously and thinking "well, DUH!")

    The Carvin is much more in the Lester/PRS camp. To me, the Cobra S seems more like a hot rodded strat. It has the lighter string tension of the LP, and it has the hotter humbucking pickups, but the similarities to an LP radically drop off from there. It still has the...I dunno...some of the kerrang of a Strat, just darker.

    Obviously, my opinions are subjective, and YMMV, &c.

    But the CT6 and the Cobra are significantly different animals. Plan accordingly.
     

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