In The History Of The Guitar industry, Martin D28 Has Been Used As The Flagship Model Of The Martin Guitar.
House of Strings
Historically, the industry imitated the Martin D-type flagship – David Mead walks into the Tone Zone column.
Martin D28 Introduction
When you pick up a Martin D28, you will deeply realize that you are not just picking up a guitar, but a piece of musical history, a symbol. Only Gibson’s Les Paul models and Fender Stratocasters have ever been compared. This acclaimed D-shaped guitar also has many loyal fans in the music industry, such as Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, and even John Lennon. Therefore, its status need not be repeated. Of course, most of these musicians were using pre-1969 versions of the Martin D28, which have been known to have undergone numerous design changes. This time Amartin are going to talk about the latest Martin D28. Is this legendary piano still worthy of its name?
For us, it’s easy to compare this to his pre-1969 models, with the herringbone trim removed, and more importantly, India rosewood instead of Brazilian rosewood, and so on. However, I don’t think this is fair to this violin. I believe the new Martin D28 should be examined objectively and compared with its peers, so let’s talk about it from the production side.
The configuration of the body material should be familiar to us. Sitka spruce top, India rosewood back and sides (Brazilian rosewood 69 years ago). However, Martin Company recognized the importance of sustainable wood development before other companies, so it also converted the rosewood configuration to Indy Rosewood before other companies. The spruce panels are made of high-grade materials.
Although some people criticize the chromatic aberration and tan stripes of today’s spruce panels, these stripes will naturally mature to an amber color after a period of use. We can see beautiful patterns on the back and side panels of rosewood. The book folio symmetry is presented based on the centerline of the decoration, which is also a feature that Martin has always insisted on.
A composite material called Boltaron is used for the body frame protector and heel patch, a new change from the traditional look. These parts are supposed to protect the entire body properly and follow the traditional guitar look.
The neck is mahogany, although Martin himself did not specify the material in the product manual. Still, from the material’s pattern and smell, combined with Martin’s experience that I have handled over the years, it should be unparalleled. Near the headstock, we can see the most classic diamond-shaped design. Martin has a proud work, and the tuners are undoubtedly Grovers.
Looking closely at the fingerboard part, we can see Martin’s iconic thick whole ebony fingerboard; the frets are medium thickness and perfectly inlaid on the fingerboard, without any rough burrs and blocking sense, one of the things I like about it too.
The nut and the bridge are made of bone, the latter being a chamfered compensated (16″ scale) bridge firmly inlaid into the ebony bridge.
Looking at the interior, although it cannot be directly observed, the internal structure adopts Martin’s classic X structure, using Sitka spruce support bars to achieve the classic Martin sound.
In general, the piano’s manufacturing skills are undoubtedly worthy of the world’s top musical instrument title. It is also worth mentioning that there is no cumbersome waste inside the guitar body, only the iconic boat-shaped backplate middle beam. It’s time for us to pick up this piano and play a few chords to hear it!
I think you should know very well that when you pick up a high-quality instrument, you will immediately feel it, and yes, the first moment I picked up the Martin D28, I felt this way. The first time I picked it up, I played hard for nearly an hour, knowing that not all guitars make me do this. The matte thin neck makes me feel like the hand and neck are almost one. Finger-picked chords and intense strumming are both very easy.
Speaking of sound, I still want to say that Martin’s iconic sound has been imitated, never surpassed, almost like a fingerprint, etched on every Martin guitar. You hear that sound, and you’re like, that’s Martin’s sound, and that’s that classic sound featured on many albums.
It has a sweet character but never loses its power, the deep body creates a full midrange response, and the sustain is unmatched by any other brand. Then we have to mention the low frequency; Martin’s low-frequency response is often referred to as a “piano-like” sound. From the D28, we can more easily feel this quality. Martin’s biggest feature is not in a specific frequency band but in the clarity of each frequency band.
This time, I specially tuned the strings to DADGAD, and I am happy to tell you that Martin D28 also has an excellent performance in this tuning. People have been debating whether the D-type is suitable for fingerpicking, and in this regard, I give the Martin D28 more than a few points but excellent. Of course, what I said doesn’t count; you can look at Michael Hedges and his Martin D28 (not the pre-69 version); I believe he is certainly an expert in fingerstyle (laughs).
I kept reminding myself that I got a new piano this time and that his voice would be more mature. Of course, I wouldn’t hesitate to take it now and do a show or something. For a serious musician, this is your choice. He’s a hard worker, serving your recordings and lives with his classic sound and unique history. I don’t care who argues this with me, so I say Martin is still making top-notch instruments like before. (David Mead)
The sound characteristics of this “music maker” are very characteristic! The back and sides are Indy rosewood, the top is Sitka spruce, and the 20-fret ebony fingerboard is firmly bonded to the mahogany neck. Pick up this piano and play it; you will feel like the world’s top musicians are walking with you. At least they can’t do without this classic work.
Producer: Model: Chinese Martin D28
|Producer: Martin Guitar
|Original Strings: Martin SP Lifespan Medium Gauge
|Tuner Brand: Grover
|Panel: Sitka Spruce
|Back & Side:India Rosewood
|Left hand: optional
|Nut width: 43mm
|Number of products: 20 products
|Chord length: 645mm
Guitar Test Results
Pros: Professional musician performer’s choice, Martin’s iconic flagship
Cons: I don’t particularly miss the herringbone pattern; maybe you like it.
Overall review: A great instrument from a professional producer, not just a great instrument, but a piece of history, and buying it won’t break the bank.