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lespik - Posted - 12/17/2009:  07:29:47

Is anyone familiar with these banjos? I have the chance to get a 1999-00 artist series for $350 w/case etc. I can't find much out about these. I am currently playing a goodtime II, with a veerman bridge. Is it worth buying this new one, or should I just stick with what I have for the time being ?

divingsailingdoug - Posted - 12/17/2009:  08:04:52

I don't know much about that particular model but from the look of the hardware and the quality of the inlya i'd say it looks like a BARGIN! Heck the case is worth almost $200.00! But of course beware of information that comes from someone like me that has serious BAS!

NINJO - Posted - 12/17/2009:  08:13:54

I have a very similiar Samick banjo - I'm not sure the model - and it's a nice banjo. The hardware has held up very well and it sounds good. The neck is a little thick, but I have small hands. Tom Nechville looked mine over at Wintergrass a couple of years ago and was impressed with it's quality. I would still be playing mine more but my wife surprised me with an R&T that fits my hands better. My Samick has been played in many public performances and even at the Strawberry Music Festival (my brother-in-law was playing it at Strawberry). A frosted head could probably improve the sound, but for that price it would be very hard or impossible to find a better sounding banjo. I am playing mine on a couple of songs at a concert next week. I am tuning it to E and keeping it on stage for a couple songs in that key to save me tuning time on stage. Have fun.

wvwood - Posted - 12/17/2009:  09:37:00

Looks like its worth $350.00 just for parts if nothing else.

banjonz - Posted - 12/17/2009:  10:22:48

Lespik, the Samick banjos are OK to a point. The sound and quality are variable. They look nice and are finished reasonably well. The sound is another issue. I find them to be rather ringy and hollow. Of course a good setup always helps. However, for US$350 that is a good price. You do need to determine whether the sound of it is any better than what you are playing now. It will definitely be louder. If you can play it before you buy then all the better. Check out the reviews here...

lespik - Posted - 12/17/2009:  12:38:52

Thanks for all of your info! I have since talked with my instructor, and he said, that I should prob. pass up on this one, and wait 'till I am ready to spend $1200-1500 on something and step up in tone and quality.

BvilleDon - Posted - 12/17/2009:  13:13:03

It sounds like you have an instructor worth listening to. It might not be bad as an investment, for the money, but it is doubtful that it would be helpful in taking your picking to the next level.

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