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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!

7163 reviews in the archive.

Gibson: RB-250

Submitted by newm on 7/1/2007

Where Purchased: Guitar Center South Dakota

Year Purchased: 2007
Price Paid: $1400.00 ($US) (bought USED)


Great bluegrass sound, I play it into a Sennheiser mic. It produces a rich ,powerful and bright sound.
This banjo is a huge improvement over previous instruments I have owned.

Sound Rating: 9


The banjo came pretty well setup ( it's a 2003) but I had to tweak the bridge to get the intonation just right. Since I have only had the banjo for a couple of weeks I haven;t really done much with it.

Setup Rating: 9


These new RB250s are nice looking banjos despite the simplicity of the inlay. This one came stock except for a Snuffy Smith bridge which I think was an extra.
The "dead bats and birds" inlay is a classic.
The Gibson plant did a nice job of building this banjo, the inlay is clean and well fitted and the tone ring seats well on the rim.

Appearance Rating: 9


The nickel plating will probably be more duarble than the gold I have on my Morgan Monroe.
The finish is low lustre but is well applied.
I have already used this banjo for a gig without a backup and all was well.

Reliability Rating: 9

Customer Service

Only dealing I have had with Gibson were regarding a baseball cap and that was handled courteously.

Customer Service: 9


The tone ring is remarkable but the tuners seem a little dodgy.
Thanks to the previous owner for the Snuffy Smith bridge and the great National fingerpicks you left in the case.

Components Rating: 9

Overall Comments

I think I got a great deal on this near new banjo (with Gibson case) I really love this instrument.

Overall Rating: 9

Morgan Monroe: Rocky Top MGB-2

Submitted by newm on 7/1/2007

Where Purchased: Banjo Barn, Kentucky

Year Purchased: 2003
Price Paid: $900.00 ($US)


This was my first banjo with a tone ring so I was really impressed with it. It;s certainly loud and perhaps a little too bright.
The gold plating on the armrest started wearing off right away.

Sound Rating: 6


Had it set up by David Sohn and he was really impressed with it.
I have only changed the bridge.
I/m told the banjo is easy to work on.

Setup Rating: 7


The materials used to build this banjo afre exceptional, the resonator hasn't marked at all over the past three years of constant play.
The inlay is stunning and the carved heel and back of headstock are a nice touch.
The flange was mounted a little crooked but that was put right.

Appearance Rating: 10


As previously mentioned the gold plating seems a little thin.
I have a Gibson now but the MM did me giood service without a backup for three years.

Reliability Rating: 7

Customer Service

No warranty issues as yet.
The warranty is for a lifetime.

Customer Service: 8


Great planetary tuners. Nice sounding tone ring. very nice overall appearance.
Needs thicker plating.

Components Rating: 8

Overall Comments

The price is excellent and the banjo is well worth it.
This is a great banjo for beginner of intermediate players but it really doesn;t come close to my Gibson RB250.

Overall Rating: 7

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