Why or why not? I'm partial to arch tops & that sound. Although not opposed to challengers (good set up brass hoop!). If you have a vested interest your vote will be disqualified (no not really - everybody is well to their opinion - even if you're trying to sell something). Hope all are fairing well with pandemic. Thanks AJ
Is the 250 with a fiddle-cut headstock with leaves and bows fretboard inlays or the flyswatter with bowtie fretboard inlays? If it was the bowtie, I'd tend toward it and switch the thin-black rim out for either a full thickness 3-ply or a block rim (I prefer block for many, many reasons but it seems most prefer ply). However, if it is the fiddle cut headstock, I'd steer clear of those and tend toward the Gold Tone, because with a good setup, those brass hoop banjos can be killers, plus they're lightweight.
I would take a '69 Gibson with a raised head over a Gold Tone raised head any day of the week! My choice is based on having played both. If you like the profile of those RB-250 necks, you will be disappointed in the Gold Tone (by my experience). AND if you like that raised head tone (and of course, set up is going to play a big part in that tone) it's hard to beat. My other reason is that '69 Mastertone has been together for 51 years- you won't get a current Gold Tone to sound like that banjo that has been settling in for 51 years. Sorry- no dog in the hunt. Only personal experience. Good luck with your polling!
Brian I like the "Blondie arch top" are you personally familiar?
I am not other than have heard some over the years and probably played a couple. (I have only owned one GoldStar). They are good banjos to very good banjos, component wise better than the Gold Tone and very possibly better in quality than that era of Gibson (which varied). The Gibson vibe from that era is pretty cool, but if you are looking for a player and value for your $$ I just wanted you to see the other options. Recording King has made some archies as well, but I did not see any in the classifieds.