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We really don't know where to begin with this one. We honestly thought about writing simply, "Just look at it" and calling it a day. Although a guitar this special needs no special introduction and the look and sound speak for themselves, our attempt at using words to capture just how incredible this guitar is, is as follows.
It is very hard to look at this guitar and not have a verbal reaction. The handful of us who have seen it in person almost all uttered the same two words (use your imaginations). The wood is some of the most highly flamed, three-dimensional Koa that we have ever laid eyes on; and it is everywhere. The back, the sides, the binding, the neck, the heel-cap, and the headstock overlay are all incredible examples of some the best supply that Martin had available of this amazing species of wood. It surrounds and envelops the creamy white Italian Alpine Spruce perfectly; which has the slightest ripple of bearclaw in a couple select spots. With its mixture of style 42, and style 45 appointments, the inlay work compliments the wood, not distracts from it. Select Abalone adorns the entire instrument including the snowflake inlays on the ebony fingerboard, the CFM Golden Era headplate inlay, the body and rosette inlay, as well as on the bridge pins themselves. The gold Waverly Tuning Machines are the perfect and only real acceptable match to cap off this stunning work of art.
Aside from being one of the most beautiful tone woods out there, Koa has a reputation for ripening and opening up over time; giving its owner a reward for the marathon of ownership. However, when used as the key tone wood on a brand new guitar, it often starts its life as bright and chimey; with great highs and good volume, but sometimes lacking in low end, mid-range, and balance. That is NOT the case with this one. This guitar sounds incredible right out of the box as if it's had a head start. When fingerpicking with this guitar, you hear smooth sustaining bass notes, crisp highs, and all the tones in between. In the right hands, this guitar induces goosebumps and can translate sound into feeling no matter what exact message you are trying to convey. When playing with a pick it sounds like the ideal representation of what an acoustic guitar should sound like; with no area of the tonal spectrum dominating over another. It's perfectly balanced and will be a joy on a couch, a stage, or in a recording studio.
Being a 12-fret, short scale guitar, this is also a joy to play. Its modified “V” neck profile fits perfectly in your hand and the low, fast action takes all the adventure and concern about getting to that next note out of the equation. It’s almost like the neck guides your hand to its proper next position.
This instrument was made with the best materials that the legendary Martin Guitar Company has to offer and it was made by the best craftspeople they employ in their illustrious Custom Shop. All of this results in simply easily one of the best sounding, most beautiful, and well-built guitars that we have ever had the pleasure of having here. This is truly an exquisite, once-in-a-lifetime piece.
|Top Material:||Italian Alpine Spruce|
|Back/Sides Material:||Highly Flamed Koa|
|Fingerboard Material:||Black Ebony|
|Neck Profile:||Modified "V"|
|Case:||Original Hardshell Case|
|Weight:||4 lbs. 2 oz.|