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Author Topic: My New Kentucky KM 172  (Read 5211 times)

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Offline chaoscat

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My New Kentucky KM 172
« on: Apr 06, 2007, 09:32:37 AM »
I've been thinking about getting a mandolin to mess around with for a while and convinced my wife that's what I needed for an anniversary present. I really didn't want to spend much, as it's just a 4th instrument to mess around with after fiddle, piano and guitar. Plus, I want to be able to add mandolin in as back up on my home recordings. I called Mofiddle's yesterday and found out they had a nice one in my price range, so I went to take a look.
I've played Fenders and Epiphones that are in the generic music stores, and then tried this new Kentucky  KM 172 that Mo had just brought in. I have to tell you folks, I am absolutely amazed that an instrument of such quality can be mass produced in China and sold retail for $240. This is a georgous instrument with hand carved solid spruce top and handcarved solid maple back/sides, an oval sound hole and has a truss rod. The workmanship and finish are without any flaws that I can see. And the sound is unreal. After the plunk-plunk boxes I've tried, this instrument just rings. The sustain and projection are amazing. The base tones dont "thunk", but are pure and clear. I couldn't put it down when I got home. I really wish I had a recording method that would do it justice so you could hear it, but I don't right now.

At the store last night, I almost couldn't get it away from Mo long enough to try it. She kept handing me other mandolin's, "Here, you play that one", while she played the Kentucky. The 172 had been on order for 8 months and she'd only had it a few days. Every employee in the store was eyeing it -Mo included. She handed me a $1600 hand made mando that didn't sound as good as the Kentucky. I took the 172 and ran.

This is a chinese instrument and Mo says that you could get 3 and they'd all sound different, but if you're looking for a low cost mandolin and could find one of these - I'd highly recommend it.




Offline giannaviolins

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Re: My New Kentucky KM 172
« Reply #1 on: Apr 06, 2007, 11:46:27 AM »
The revised Kentucky line seems quite decent.  I just received a new KM-254, in part for curiosity.  This is an F hole model.  It has the boomy, big voice of the KM-250, but perhaps a bit better focused. 

At lease the F hole low end Kentucky mandolins seem to get their response from being fairly thin centered.  That's a compromise.  Big sound, low price, but not the same response, tone, and attack of the usual thick center, thin edge, substantial recurve model.  Which is more expensive to produce.  Still a remarkable value.

Offline johnnie40coats

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Re: My New Kentucky KM 172
« Reply #2 on: Jun 04, 2007, 12:52:19 PM »
chaoscat,
you still loving your Kentucky 172 two months on? Reason I ask is I'm thinking of getting one.

Cheers,
Johnnie

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Re: My New Kentucky KM 172
« Reply #3 on: Jun 04, 2007, 06:02:16 PM »
I played a couple of new kentuckys at Elderly, in Michigan, last weekend and was impressed. They weren't real loud but they played well and sounded good for the money.

Just like with violins, setup makes the difference.

Offline giannaviolins

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Re: My New Kentucky KM 172
« Reply #4 on: Jun 04, 2007, 10:52:57 PM »
Just ordered a couple.  Will see what they're like.

Offline chaoscat

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Re: My New Kentucky KM 172
« Reply #5 on: Jun 12, 2007, 03:48:54 PM »
After the playing the kentucky for several months now, I continue to be very pleased with my 172. I love the sound of it, the way it plays and it's a beautiful instrument to boot. I've played the heck out of it and would absolutely recommend it.

Here's a link to a site where I've posted a few recordings. In the recording of Soldiers Joy I used the 172 as backup and for melody in the second half - this was recorded thru a $20 radio shack computer mike into the onboard soundcard on my computer-with no post processing enhancement to the sound. I also use it for melody work in the second half of Walls of Liscarroll. I've since significantly upgraded my recording setup,  but haven't had a chance to put together any more instrumentals lately. I've been working my tail off putting together a CD of old Southern Gospel Hymns for my 80 year old mother. These are mostly piano/vocals, though I do use the mando as backup frequently.

http://ezfolk.com/audio/bands/2537/


 




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