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The banjo reviews database is here to help educate people before they purchase an instrument. Of course, this is not meant to be a substitute for playing the instrument yourself!

6919 reviews in the archive.

Romero  11" Traditional Banjo Reviews

Submitted by unclekurty (see all reviews from this person) on 10/15/2008

Where Purchased: J. Romero Banjos, Cobble Hill Rd B.C.

Year Purchased: 2008
Price Paid: Don't Remember historic exchange rates / currency converter

Sound

This is an all maple banjo. The pot is deep about 3.5 inches and a bit under .5 inches thick. It has an intregal rosewood tonering with a convex upper edge. The neck has a 24.9 inch scale. Jason placed the bridge so it's @ 5 inches from the bottom of the pot. I think that makes it sound less bright. The banjo again sounds unique. It's different from my 12's. I think the deeper, thinner rim gives it a more complex sound. The larger surface of the wooden ring adds a bit more ring at the end of the note than my other wooden ring banjos. It's well balanced.

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

It was set up again how I like it. This one has a thicker bridge. I tried some thinner ones but the one it came with sounds best. It came with a goat skin head that was previously on another banjo. There's plenty of room left on the tension hoop. This head is really tight right now. I haven't yet needed to tighten it. I've had problems with skin heads getting them tight but having the top of the tension hoop pulling down below the rim. It won't happen with this skin ever. I was concerned I might not like the sound of an 11 inch pot but I like the sound. It's easy to play with a 24.9 scale. The neck is thick like my frettless but it comes to a 'V' which feels great and you can see the V down the middle of the neck which looks very nice. The banjo is light. It came with Gotoh's which look great blackened. I thought about getting the Knilling pegs but this banjo has a smaller peghead and I think these are a bit smaller and fit better. The neck has a small scoop and a very small scoop along the edge of the neck where my thumb hits the 5th string. The two frets are shortened each a different length. It's hardly noticible and so very functional. I'm really glad Jason added this.

Setup Rating: 10

Appearance

The maple was stained dark and finished with hard oil. The pictures on my homepage look brown. It's actually grey with almost black curl. The headstock is bound in ebony along with the pot. The peghead has a curly maple veneer as well as the top of the pot. The goat skin head and bridge are also stained with the same mixture used on the wood. It has Cole inspired inlay on the first fret and also the scoop. The hardware is blackened. I think it looks great. It has an antique vibe to it. The maple on the pot is very figured and the neck wood is bery highly figured.

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

This has Jason's custom hardware. It's all blackened. The shoes are two pointed ones but they are much more substantial than others I've seen. It has Jason's brass tailpiece which is attached to pot with another unique two pointed shoe Jason designed. This is heavy duty hardware.

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

Lifetime warranty. This is my 5th banjo from Jason. He's great to work with. I'm always pleasantly surprised with the banjos I have made. I know from the outset I'm going to get a banjo that is made meticulously with the best woods and hardware by a great luthier. Each of my banjos sound like no others. I commend Jason for always being willing to try just about anything. I'm looking forward to seeing Jason's banjos and designs getting better and better. He's always going to be raising the bar. He going to keep on having very happy satisfied customers like me.

Customer Service: 10

Components

The neck is really outstanding. It has a large Dobson style heel which is carved out on each side where your fingers would grip it. I love the beefiness and the V shape. It is nicely carved with a curve around the 5th fret tuner running along the side. The stain came out better than I imagined it. The ebony binding on the perhead is sweet. Jason choose and designed the inlay and I think it looks great.

Components Rating: 10

Overall Comments

I love Jason's banjos. I wouldn't keep ordering them if I wasn't just amazed by them.

Overall Rating: 10

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