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Concertina Reviews


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#1 Woody

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Posted 25 March 2006 - 07:09 AM

Any reason why there isn't a separate section dedicated to reviews of Concertinas. When I first came to this site it was one of the things I was expecting & I was surprised not to find.

#2 Greg Jowaisas

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Posted 25 March 2006 - 07:16 AM

Woody,

If you go to the concertina.net Home Page and click on Buyer's Guide there is a wealth of information (and some opinions) about a number of concertinas and makers.

Questions about specific models come up periodically. I'm sure you would get some responses to a particular question.

Greg

#3 Ken_Coles

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Posted 25 March 2006 - 07:51 AM

Any reason why there isn't a separate section dedicated to reviews of Concertinas. When I first came to this site it was one of the things I was expecting & I was surprised not to find.


May I gently suggest you (and every other curious new member) go to the home page and click on every link (not just the Buyer's Guide) you find across the top and down the left side of that page. Should keep you busy for a while. Some of the material is dated and some needs reorganizing and revision (which I actually am doing on a modest scale all the time), but you will find a lot of interest there. Paul started this site in 1996 to give buying advice to isolated new anglo players, and we have slowly expanded from that beginning, a lot of writing and editing over the last decade. We'd sure like to see folks make use of it. Happy playing,

Ken

#4 Woody

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 06:11 AM

Hi guys,

thanks for the replies, I've re-looked at my original post and I must apologise for not really making myself clear - when I was talking about the site I really meant the forum area. I'll have to be a bit more careful about how I phrase posts - please consider my humble pie baked, smothered in cream and duly eaten :(


What I meant to say was when I first came to the C.net site I looked through the buyers guide and the other links on the home page. It's a very impressive resource and I learned a great deal from it.

I then thought "I'll have a look in the forum and see what people are saying about their & other boxes" - a less formal level of review if you like - and I found that those discussions lived amongst the General Discussion area, not a separate dedicated one.

Now I can't say that this is an issue that excercises me much and I accept that the General Discussion area may well be the best place for these - I just thought I'd mention that I'd been surprised that there wasn't a forum area dedicated to this, given that for many of us the purchase of a new box is just the chance to start dreaming about buying the next one!

#5 Ken_Coles

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 08:15 AM

I am trained as a geologist. In naming the layers of the Earth, some geologists are "lumpers" (they prefer a few, large categories as easier to use) and some are "splitters" (they prefer many small categories as more specific). The debate they have is endless. Thus with the forums. We hear comments both ways. Of course, Paul and I think we are treading the middle ground, but who knows? Two opinions are what make a horse race, they say in the western U.S. That said, we are always contemplating changes in Forum categories, but currently not in this area.

Look at it this way. One hobby I'm associated with has an new Invision forum, and the editors set up a "Newbies" area. What they found was the old hands (save for a few brave souls) didn't stop by often enough to answer all the questions posted. Having questions about reviews of instruments in General Discussion means someone who has owned a Dimplespitz Antarctic-system concertina for three years and wouldn't think of posting a review now might see your question and respond. If you post a question about a specific brand, you will hear from some owners. And every mid-level and top-level brand has owner-defenders here. In my experience, you will only get significant negative comments about Scholers, Italian-made, and Chinese-made concertinas from some (but not all) owners.

We are left with the same problem Paul started with in 1996: If you are shopping and are in complete concertina isolation, there are limits to what we can tell you, as many features of individual models are so individual in player preference. Horses for courses. The moral is try other instruments whenever you can at schools, festivals, etc. - everyone I know here is very generous about this. Since you're in the U.K., Woody (many Yanks and others here envy you on this), the opportunities are there, when life and family let you get to them....

Regards and enjoy the hunt,
Ken

#6 JimLucas

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 09:08 AM

I then thought "I'll have a look in the forum and see what people are saying about their & other boxes" - a less formal level of review if you like - and I found that those discussions lived amongst the General Discussion area, not a separate dedicated one.

Dedicated areas are great, except when folks ignore them. Many C.net members seem to start new Topics in the "General Discussion" sub-Forum, regardless of their content. E.g., they'll ask a history or repair question in GD. Other times such a subject will be a digression from the original subject of a thread. Occasionally, I'll make my reply to such a "misplaced" post as a new Topic in what I consider to be the appropriate sub-Forum, but most folks don't do that. Then there's the question of where to put a Topic when it crosses categories. E.g., should I post something about my 19th-century concertina tutor under "Concertina History" or under "Teaching and Learning"?

Your best bet is to use the Search facility (maybe with "More Options"), in spite of its limitations and the masses of hits you'll get on certain maker names.

But with few exceptions, each instrument is unique. Even those models that were mass produced (or produced in batches under Wheatstone) are likely to show significant differences in sound and feel simply because of differences in how they've been used, current condition, or who has restored them.

Of modern instruments, the Morse models and Concertina Connection's "Jackie" and "Jack" are pretty consistent, and the Stagis, Scholer's, etc. seem to be consistent in the inconsistency of their mechanical quality, but Tedrow, Suttner, Marcus, etc. tend to do at least some customization of each instrument they make, something that I think is most often evident in terms of sound. So it would be misleading to review such instruments in a way that suggested, e.g., "this is what you can expect a Geuns-Wakker anglo to feel like and sound like." The more useful review is to comment -- as many have done -- on the general quality and the extent to which it met the buyer's specifications.

Something similar goes for vintage instruments. No two Wheatstone Ĉolas that I've owned -- or played -- have sounded or felt quite alike. I have a Lachenal Edeophone English that not only sounds and feels quite different from my Lachenal New Model English, but also from Edeophones I've tried in the past, even two others with the same amboyna ends and glass buttons.

In the end, the only way to be sure is to try a particular instrument before you buy. And to try several of each type to develop your own sense of general quality and variability.

#7 Woody

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 09:16 AM

Thanks guys - you've convinced me


W



p.s.

Dimplespitz Antarctic-system concertina


Oh no! Not another one to go on the shopping list :o

#8 JimLucas

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 09:23 AM

Dimplespitz Antarctic-system concertina

Oh no! Not another one to go on the shopping list :o

I recommend you avoid that one. What with global warming, it's likely to melt away before you've gotten good use out of it. :ph34r:

#9 Woody

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Posted 26 March 2006 - 09:49 AM

:lol:




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