Guild Starfire IV?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by LadOfEastPoland, Mar 12, 2015.

  1. LadOfEastPoland

    LadOfEastPoland Member

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    Greeting ladies and gentlemen, citizens of TGP republic!
    I was looking for an ES-335 style guitar that would have a good playability and great tone! I came across these Guild Starfires. I wondered - "Do they sound anything close to an actual ES-335 by Gibson?". I heard some great opinions on them and some 6/10 kind of opinions. I was looking for something that would rather sit in blues/jazz/country box. Would this one work?

    • How is the craftsmanship on these?
    • How are electronics?
    • Wood quality?
    • Neck and overall playability?
    I would really like to own a good quality ES-335 (own an Epi Dot, which is very ok for me). Help? These Guilds seem nice, man!
    Yours Sincirely,
    Lad of the East of Beautiful Republic of Poland
     
  2. Zuhzuhzombie!!

    Zuhzuhzombie!! Member

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    Don't own one, but I think they are exceptionally nice. The necks are somewhat thin but not 60s SG thin. Fit and finish overall is superb for the price. Electronics are great and they are actual legit reissues of the original pickups, which is what made the guitars so desirable in the first place

    My only knock against them is a somewhat thick poly coat.
     
  3. m.e.

    m.e. Freelance Bio-exorcist Silver Supporting Member

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    I played a few of the Newark St. Guilds, including the Starfire IV, and thought they were great guitars. I remember the Starfire IV having a neck that felt 'medium' to me. I don't own a 335 to compare it against, but I think it's a great semi-hollow that could cover the genres you mentioned.

    The price point (at least in the US) is really reasonable, and I think it's pretty gig-ready right out of the box.
     
  4. Timmo

    Timmo Member

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    I just bought a Guild Starfire IV and I literally cannot put it down!
    :drool
    Playability and ToNe is "superb"!
    This guitar just sort of fell into my lap as I was not even looking for a 335 type guitar but man, I'm sure glad I had my bud bring it on over.
    The original Guild pickups have a really interesting clarity to them.
    Neck is around 7.0 and bridge 6.56.
    A very 'woody' sounding guitar.
    The middle position is wonderful!
    The build quality...........YIKES! If a 'boutique guy' was building this to these specs....$3500 easy!!!!!!!
    The neck feels much like my '67 Gibson 335.
    My 335 is a ruder sounding guitar while the Starfire IV is more refined and polite but make no mistake, the Starfire can freaking ROCK!!!!! :rockin
    I'm so impressed with this Guild and it's so fun to be taken by surprise.
    My IV is from 1980 and is the blonde/natural version ( BEAUTIFUL & FLAWLESS ) with the G fantail bridge........:eeks
    The master volume is addictive!

    A HuGE surprise and don't hesitate........go PLAY ONE!!!!!!!
     
  5. LadOfEastPoland

    LadOfEastPoland Member

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    Do you have any information if these reissues are that good, too? Heard the pickups are built the same way, so this might indicate something. :)
     
  6. gkoelling

    gkoelling Member

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    I haven't tried one of the current SF IVs but my concerns with them are the bridge, I'd rather have a fixed adjustable bridge and tail piece, and the pickups. The pickups appear to be made to the original Guild humbucker specs, which are smaller than the standard size humbucker making it a major job to replace them if you decide you'd rather have something different.

    Have you looked at the Eastman T386? Those are lacquer finished and get very good reviews but I don't know if they're available in Poland.

    Good luck in your search
     
  7. LadOfEastPoland

    LadOfEastPoland Member

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    Well, Gkoelling, I order all my gear from the US. And everything that is in the US is available in Poland! It is a civilized country!
     
  8. gkoelling

    gkoelling Member

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    There was no suggestion made as to the civilization of your country. Some products are available in some places and not in others. I'm glad you're able to order from different sources.

    Good luck in your search
     
  9. LadOfEastPoland

    LadOfEastPoland Member

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    Sorry about that, thanks!
     
  10. Dave Wakely

    Dave Wakely Member

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    I'd second the 'very woody sounding'. Gibsonesque but with a hint of Gretsch, perhaps? The Pretenders' erstwhile guitarist, Adam Seymour used to play one a lot. More retro sounding to me than a 335, but the old ones are very good guitars - I've not tried a new one.
     
  11. Timmo

    Timmo Member

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    Oh, I have no idea about reissues........I'm just talking about this one from 1980.
     
  12. SciFlyer

    SciFlyer Supporting Member

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    Not a IV, but I had a III from the late 90s that had a Guildsby.. Sounded great, neck was nice, looked cool. For some reason I never bonded with it. It was a very nice guitar overall, just couldn't get into it.
     
  13. DrumBob

    DrumBob Gold Supporting Member

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    I used to work for Guild, and I have always liked the Starfire, more than the comparable ES-335. My only regret is, I should have bought one when I worked at Guild.
     
  14. Timmo

    Timmo Member

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    Cool....
    The best surprise of 2015 so far is the GUILD Starfive IV......

    The build quality is off the charts....well, it was in 1981 anyway.
    Wow!!!:drool
     
  15. LadOfEastPoland

    LadOfEastPoland Member

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    I know that I should put this in another place, but what are some good places where I can get used guitars other than EBay and Reverb.com?
     
  16. Zuhzuhzombie!!

    Zuhzuhzombie!! Member

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  17. Jahn

    Jahn Listens to Johnny Marr, plays like John Denver Supporting Member

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    And for guilds? LetsTalkGuild forum.
     
  18. 335guy

    335guy Member

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    The Newark St. Guild Starfire IV is pretty close to the original '60's era Starfires in that it uses a floating bridge, trapeze tailpiece, laminated mahogany body, 3 piece neck and many of the same features of the 60's era Starfires. It differs in that it has a poly finish instead of a lacquer finish, but outside of that, it is pretty darn close and the build quality reviews have been very good.

    That said, personally, I don't care for the floating bridge. What's the point, since the guitar has a solid center block? It's not like the top is vibrating much. And the trapeze tailpiece doesn't work for me either. Not sure if a ABR-1 type bridge and stop tailpiece could be installed but I think it might be doable.

    If you were wanting a more 335 type Starfire IV, then consider getting one of the Westerly made ones from the 90's. Those had maple laminated tops, rather than mahogany, and ABR-1 bridges, along with a stop tailpiece. But you will pay more than the current re-issues.
     

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