Kiesel allan holdsworth HH2 vs japanese J craft ibanez?

Discussion in 'Beginners/FAQ' started by hanachanmaru, Nov 22, 2016.

  1. hanachanmaru

    hanachanmaru SS.org Regular

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    Hi guys and gals.... i been wanting for a HH2 by kiesel perhaps my specs would be like a flame maple neck with masscar ebony with swamp ash body with a koa top...

    But i have heard many "bad" reviews citing it plays "plastic" not woody and didnt have that natural wood feel and tone?

    I wonder if any HH2 owner who owns a Kiesel era and a Carvin era HH2 would wanna chime in and have a clear on my doubts if there has been a better quality with kiesel or carvin and how the kiesel feels and play compares to a standard J craft ibanez rg series?

    Thanks and sorry if offended anybody here...
     
  2. marcwormjim

    marcwormjim SS.org Regular

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    They're very different guitars, with very different specs; and going from one great guitar to the other will make one feel unfairly awkward. It really comes down to whether or not you know what specs you prefer. People are more familiar with what to expect from Ibanez; so I'll highlight the HH2:

    The HH has Gibson string-spacing, the perceived string tension may seem looser, the strings anchoring at the end of the body will make the scale seem shorter, the light weight and hollow design will make it feel more fragile than it is and, if you use the trem, the one-spring design may feel much stiffer than others. It also has a fat neck you're unlikely to find on an RG or Saber. Also bear in mind that the Kiesel will have a much lower resale than the Ibanez.

    There is also the matter of whether you plan to swap out the pickups - But only you know what you like to hear out of them.

    Concerning the "qualities" you put in quotes: Kiesels/Carvins are just another high-end guitar; and one's prejudices concerning the brand dictate the language used to praise or disparage it. Your mileage may vary - I'm not going to pretend to qualify what "woody" might mean to you, in this context. Apologies if I didn't lean enough toward one brand.
     
  3. jl-austin

    jl-austin SS.org Regular

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    I have heard this about Carvin/Kiesels as well. I have not owned one, however, looking at the website, it looks like the neck is reinforced. This is great for stability, and for playing live. For playing at home, with low volumes, I can see why people say their guitars feel stiff, and unresponsive. Those reinforced rods (Ibanez uses them on some models also) just kill the natural wood resonance. If you want to feel the resonance of the wood in the guitar, I would suggest a guitar that the neck isn't quite so reinforced.

    my :2c:
     
  4. hanachanmaru

    hanachanmaru SS.org Regular

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    Thanks guys... maybe i would say am looking into wood qualities on kiesel guitars? I dont know the process on reinforcing a guitar neck...

    But i like how my jackson sl2h neck is and my old ibanez RG7 neck... i dont know if by opting a satin neck would help to have a more natural "less stiff" feel ?

    Have never played a kiesel but i remember picking up a HH2 carvin era and the guitar fretboard if i recall feels abit "unatural" or maybe "stiff" feels maybe "plastic" ?

    But i cant judge the guitar based on my faint memory and is not doing kiesel justice... but whenever i see a headless guitar i always think of strandbergs, kiesel vader and my thoughts then jump into a HH2... i feel the HH2 singlecut is way cooler
     
  5. 7 Strings of Hate

    7 Strings of Hate Mid-Level Asshole Contributor

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    I had an HH2. I only sold it because I really got into SSH config'ed guitars. But it sounded excellent. All the Kiesel/Carvin hate is just hyperbole. Sure there are some "lemons" here and there. At that scale, there will always be. Ibanez has made more lemons over its life than Carvin ever will because of scale.
    I wouldn't sweat it. As for which guitar to choose from, you gotta ask yourself what you want. But don't skip the Carvin/Kiesel because guitar hipsters want to say they sound plastic. What the hell does that even mean anyway?
     
  6. hanachanmaru

    hanachanmaru SS.org Regular

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    Well yeah i felt very unfair on kiesel guitars.... maybe what they mean is the wood feels alot stiffer than most guitars do... maybe on their fretboards? Cant comment more into it really ... but am really kiesel should shine out compares to strandbergs... as most of its korean model is just as pricey as a custom kiesel ? But am expecting a kiesel to be more popular
     
  7. TheTrooper

    TheTrooper SS.org Regular

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    As 7 Strings of Hate said, the "kiesel sux!11!!1!" trend Is pure bull....; I had a Carvin Holdsworth HF2 (The FatBoy) and it was great.

    Great woods, great sound (because it was hollow, the note had a certain resonance to them); keep in mind that the standard Holdsworth neck is FAT, but You can choose if You want it or not.

    Fretjob is really good (the only thing that sometimes happens is: when the fretboard expand or shrink, You get some fret end bubbles on the clear paint)

    I had a Vader too, but sold it because the 27" was hurting my hand.
     
  8. pathogenicmetal666

    pathogenicmetal666 SS.org Regular

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    I'm sure Carvin isn't bad, but the best mass-produced guitars are MIJ.

    Carvin also has bad resale value. Especially if you're outside of the US and nobody has heard of Carvin. I can only imagine how bad that is.
     
  9. laxu

    laxu SS.org Regular

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    You're completely wrong. I have a Kiesel AM7 with a carbon fiber reinforced neck and also a Carvin (Kiesel) Contour C66 that does not have a reinforced neck. Same factory, cannot tell any difference. Same with my other guitars. The fact that the neck is reinforced has absolutely no bearing on tone or feel, it just helps the guitar be less susceptible to weather changes, wood twisting etc.

    hanachanmaru, I actually had a Strandberg Boden OS 8 for a while and that particular example was not very good. Bad fret buzzing issues that would have required a fret dressing and the tone was not as good as my AM7. Top wood was also pretty crap looking for a limited edition model. For the most part it was a well made guitar though and Strandberg's customer service was really good. If you live in the EU you might consider trying them because they have very easy returns if you don't like the guitar.
     
  10. marcwormjim

    marcwormjim SS.org Regular

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    It's totally subjective. If someone wants to claim carbon-graphite neck reinforcement kills their tone; fine - There are plenty of guitars out there without it.

    That being said, I've found the guitar necks I've owned that have been 100% carbon-graphite, 0% wood to be quite resonant.
     
  11. johnnyninja

    johnnyninja SS.org Regular

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    I have an hh2x, and it's an excellent guitar. In fact, I thinned the herd down to this one guitar for now and I don't feel like i'm suffering. I wouldn't hesitate to order one.

    You just need to be prepared for the differences that a small headless guitar like this offers. It's also chamberd, as I'm sure you know, and that adds a different tone quality as well. Also, the trem has a different feel than a floyd. It's not my preference but I've learned to deal with it.

    Finally, I ordered the thin neck option that brings the specs down to Kiesel's "normal" neck specs. I'm glad I did. I was playing RG's exclusively, but have some arthritis in my thumbs and can't play the thin necks comfortably any longer. The neck feels great, but i definitely recommend going for the thin option if you are used to ibbys. I think you can even have them double the normal thin amount they take off the neck if you want them to.

    Edit: there are a few good you tube videos that highlight some good tones. Nothing plastic or woody. Those descriptions make me think someone expected this guitar to sound like a strat or LP.
     
  12. MetalHead40

    MetalHead40 SS.org Regular

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    The Carvin (ST300c) I own has the carbon rods in the neck and is the most responsive best sounding/playing guitar I own. Sounds better and plays better than my 04 Non weight relieved LP studio, the MIJ Jackson signature Dominion I had, the LTD MS-1 I had, and the Jackson soloist I had. Also sounds and plays better than many of the other guitars I've played.

    I've got a Kiesel A6 arriving in about 3 weeks and will report on it here shortly. Its got the carbon rods as well.
     
  13. noUser01

    noUser01 Still can't play.

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    I definitely remember Mark Holcomb saying that he didn't play his Holdsworth sig at all live back in the day because of feedback issues, which he attributed to the chambered body. Something to keep in mind, depending on your situation it might be important.
     
  14. hanachanmaru

    hanachanmaru SS.org Regular

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    Thanks guys... but for a chambered guitar to have feedback but i have no idea how hollow it is... yet judging on guitars like strandbergs and the carvin vader i think it should be ok? Yet it depends on how much wood has been taken off huh?

    Think i will order one soon if it feels good just like what a quality guitar should feel like as talked having an ibanez RG Japan crafted as a benchmark... :)
     
  15. marcwormjim

    marcwormjim SS.org Regular

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    It's worth noting that stage feedback with a hollow body is often a matter of "user error": Standing in front of a speaker that's projecting at the body. You can only fight physics so much before you resign yourself to staying where the instrument won't feed back. Then again, not one hollowbody has ever been designed with Periphery's music and stage-volume in mind.
     
  16. gclef

    gclef SS.org Regular

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    i have a regular h2 from '02 with the carbon rods, as well as an rg520qs, an rg921, an rg3xxv, and a warmoth strat and tele.
    the h2 is easily one of my favorites. it is very woody sounding.
    it is by far one of the most unique guitars out there.
     

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