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Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated?   You are logged in as Guest
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Echi

 

Posts: 949
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? 

The question comes after a trial of a Reyes guitar.
Nice guitar in every regard I have to say.
Nontheless I found it less good than the market price would suggest for it and in the same league of other top guitars.
It was just me or someone here had a similar experience? What did I miss?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2016 9:31:58
 
tri7/5

 

Posts: 547
Joined: May 5 2012
 

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

quote:

ORIGINAL: Echi

The question comes after a trial of a Reyes guitar.
Nice guitar in every regard I have to say.
Nontheless I found it less good than the market price would suggest for it and in the same league of other top guitars.
It was just me or someone here had a similar experience? What did I miss?


I think you're going to have guys tell you they are the greatest thing on earth and others say they aren't worth it. Always with the old "master" guitars you're buying the name as much as anything whether the guitar is good or not. Is a 1959 Les Paul worth unloading 200k for just so you can say you own one vs. a new one? Some guys will say yes while others are happy spending 5k on a new historic LP and get the same vibe.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2016 12:31:58
 
Echi

 

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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

Well, It's a good advice.
In fact I didn't mean to make the point of money as the market usually decides the right price.
My question is what makes that guitar so desiderable? What is the big plus in the sound which is sought after by the professional players and make the price rise up?
I own a Gerundino (and sold another one) and I think to know the points where the guitar could excel and where it doesn't.
I could say the same for Conde or Bellido.
In the case of the Reyes (at least of the one I tried) - even though I admit it's a very good guitar - I can't define what makes it so special in the eyes of so many professionals.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2016 13:22:36
 
Morante

 

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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

Some guitars sound great en directo, some sound great with a microphone. Some stand up to the rigours of professional life and some don´t. Some appeal to one player and not to another. Some people know what they are talking about and some don´t. As a rule, those who don´t talk loudest.

There are reasons why many professionals play Condes and why some people rubbish them. A lot depends on your point of view.

I have played several Reyes and some were very good and some not. (Substitute any maker you like for Reyes )
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2016 14:41:51
 
RobJe

 

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From: UK

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

quote:

I found it less good than the market price would suggest



It would be good to hear what you thought was lacking and prompted you to start this thread. That said, we have to acknowledge that there not too much agreement about the meaning of words used to describe the qualities of guitars and discussing a particular guitar is very difficult without joint access to playing it.

Here is my experience and gut feeling. I have played 6 Reyes guitars. One was an early sixties guitar and was different from the rest – not bad, but different. One was very stiff and I didn’t like it. The others were all very similar with qualities that I find it difficult to describe, but very pleasing to me – much more pleasing than hundreds of guitars I have played over the years. I bought one.

Guitar makers become well known and their prices rise if (i) they achieve a reasonable degree of consistency in the characteristics of their guitars, (ii) the characteristics of their best guitars are liked by many players, (iii) some famous guitarist plays their guitars. From my own limited experience (but more than one Reyes guitar!) and from opinions I have read, Reyes guitars tick all these boxes.

It is often claimed that some luthiers give their guitars away or offer then at very low prices to encourage endorsements and increase the chance that their guitars will be played by a famous guitarist and help them to put prices up. I don’t have experience that would enable me to verify this but in the case of Reyes, he said in an interview in the 90s that Vicente had two of his guitars and that if he wanted another he should hurry up an order one as the waiting list was growing. Reyes closed his orders list long before he died. He could have moved into a different kind of production with higher output and more profit but he chose not to. He was a modest man and always spoke like someone who was a bit surprised that people liked his guitars.

Rob
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2016 15:34:09
 
Richard Jernigan

Posts: 3155
Joined: Jan. 20 2004
From: Austin, Texas USA

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Morante

I've told part of this story here before, but maybe not the last part.

I bought my first guitar at age 19 in Paracho, for 300 pesos ($24 at the time). Ramon Zalapa, the dealer, also sold office furniture and paint. He said he had a factory where ten men made guitars. I picked out the loudest of the ten or so he had in the shop. Of course I knew nothing at all about guitars, but being a 19 year old twit I had to say something, so I told him the guitar was great. He pushed back his straw hat, grinned widely flashing a gold tooth, and said, "Pues, todos no salen igual."

Forty-four years later, discussing over the telephone a collector's item classical, made by one of the most famous luthiers of the 20th century, I told the Paracho story to the dealer, who had an extensive inventory of very expensive instruments. He had also had a European career as a concert artist and professor.

The dealer roared with laughter for quite a long time.

In the event, I bought the guitar, after having it on trial for ten days. When I first played it, I thought something was wrong with it. It seemed both weak and tinny. Then I began to figure out how to play it, and it started to sound better. I was curious, and I knew I could flip it to Japan at a profit. The dealer said it hadn't been played for years. In the end I learned better how to play it, and I think it opened up. Now it's one of the best classical guitars I have ever played--for me, but maybe not for someone else.

RNJ
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 15 2016 15:45:24
 
Ricardo

Posts: 13063
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

Reyes is in league with other flamenco favorites such as Conde, Ramirez, etc. The reason for the price hike up was because Reyes wait list became ridiculous....used models started being the only way to get one and so as people started grabbing them, after seeing grammy winner vicente with one, the used ones started going up as well. Basically the reason comes down not to sound or playability but to AVAILABILITY. I will never forget seeing Nuñez use one he waited many years to get from Reyes.....he had sanded the back of the neck himself, gave it several chances, then finally sold it as it didn't hold up to his factory conde in terms of sound or feel.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 17 2016 11:36:46
 
Tom Blackshear

 

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 17 2016 15:41:18
 
Echi

 

Posts: 949
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

Thomas Humphrey used to say that the main judgement about a guitar is a belly-one, made just after the first seconds you play it.
I think it's true. I found that particular Reyes very good but not better than other top guitars made by other makers.
While playing I was ticking in my mind all the boxes with the things I find important. Everything was more or less there.
Eventually I decided to compare that guitar with some of my guitars (Conde, Manzanero) trying not to lie.
Different guitars but not worse if not better in some regards.
Eventually, if I have to judge what I like (at least today) Probably I like more other guitars, hence my sincere question.
Anyway you gave me nice contributions to reflect on.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 18 2016 14:54:57
 
Tom Blackshear

 

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 18 2016 16:50:14
 
tk

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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

Hi Echi,

The short answer is "No", it is not overrated. Just my opinion. But then again, it is a very subjective matter and as you saw in the responses, you are going to get various answers.

If I were you, I would divide the question into 2 parts:

Overrated by price?
Overrated by quality of sound?

I read here that the price is high because supply is limited. I can name a lot of guitars with limited supply but the prices are not as high as a Reyes. Take, Gerundino for example, great guitars if it is from the 70s, but they go for $11K to $12K max not like Reyes prices. The price is there because people are willing to pay that much for it. Try to command that price for an old faustino (which is also a limited supply).

The thing with Reyes, I find, is that it has unique attributes that other guitars don't carry. Because of its sweet lyrical trebles, you can very easily justify to play a classical piece on it. I have owned several of them and compared to many many other condes, devoes, Gerundinos etc....(I am surrounded by guitar dealers here in California, so I can drive and play as many as I can). In my opinion, the Reyes sound stands out.

Again, just an opinion. Hope this helps.

TK

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 18 2016 20:50:01
 
Echi

 

Posts: 949
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

quote:

In other words, Sr. Reyes innate understanding of the building process has proven him a master builder and your posts sort of, perhaps not intentionally, but nevertheless, bring him down among other builders as less than what he has achieved as a master artisan
.
I consider Reyes a master artisan and sincerely cannot find anything unrespectful in what I wrote.
I just said that the guitar I tried (while very good) was anyway less good than I expected or at least in the same league of other guitars.
That's just my sincere opinion based on the guitar I could examine carefully.

Secondly, I agree that these guitars have fame of being consistently good both in sound and in craft.
Even more than that they have a certain pleasant identity.
Given that, I wasn't impressed and think I played better guitars.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 19 2016 4:53:41
 
Tom Blackshear

 

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 19 2016 13:31:59
 
Echi

 

Posts: 949
Joined: Jan. 11 2013
 

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

quote:

to refer to one of his guitars as being no better than other master builders or even to imply novice building is to show disrespect

I never stated or implied novice building in a Reyes and anyway "being no better than other master builders" is not something disrespectful.
I for one preferred my Conde, Gerundino or Manzanero to "that" specific Reyes. That's it.
Maybe one day I'll try a better one and change my mind but this has still to happen.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Nov. 19 2016 16:02:55
 
Echi

 

Posts: 949
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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

I found this nice post of John Ray, and thought to link it as it can add something to the topic.
http://www.granadaexpert.com/johnray/its-not-about-the-wood/
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 7 2016 8:04:24
 
RobJe

 

Posts: 727
Joined: Dec. 16 2006
From: UK

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

Yes – John Ray makes some interesting points. Some of his thoughts about the price of new luthier made guitars also apply to second-hand guitars. I have sold a couple of nice guitars to people who will probably never play flamenco. The first went to someone who couldn’t play a note and the second to someone who played some nice little gentle tunes over and over again before deciding to buy – I am sure he is still playing the same tunes and hopefully enjoying it.

Who is the “godfather” he refers to I wonder. My guess would be Antonio Marin Montero. Perhaps we should all head to Granada while prices are so reasonable!

Rob
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 7 2016 12:54:01
 
Echi

 

Posts: 949
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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

The 2 Godfathers are probably Marin Montero and Bellido whose guitars are very cheap if you compare them with those of other top makers (Reyes hijo, DeVoe, Barba, Conde etc..).
There's a shop who sells a couple of new Marin Montero for 4500 Euro or so...and many others great makers like the same Ray or Baarslag or Stephen Hill keep similar prices.
I for one am not a pro player (and far for being rich) but I have been playing regularly and with passion classical/flamenco guitar for the last 30 years and I care more to have a nice guitar than a nice car..

Back to Granada: I thought that a Reyes had a stiffer pulsacion than a Bellido guitar, but actually I found them not very far.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 7 2016 13:41:12
 
RobJe

 

Posts: 727
Joined: Dec. 16 2006
From: UK

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

You will mean Manuel Bellido - he and Marin Montero made guitars together when they started out.

I would say from experience Reyes stiffer and sweeter, M Bellido more earthy and looser - but words can't convey everything. Tomatito seems to have no trouble switching from one to the other.

Rob
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 7 2016 13:55:39
 
Echi

 

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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

Yes, I meant Manuel Bellido.
I used to have a nice guitar of his some years ago.
I still have an old Jose Lopez Bellido, A maker I find underrated.
I tried a Marin Montero in a shop and I must say it was very well made.
I found the top of the Reyes (I can speak just for the only one I tried) stiffer than a typical Bellido but not as much as one of my Condes or my Manzanero.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Dec. 7 2016 15:29:44
 
Echi

 

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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

I know it means nothing, but I found a couple of intersting tube videos quite representative of what I meant with this topic.
Btw in this 3D JL Bellido was mentioned as well.
It's agreed that a Tube video doesn't explain anything and btw the Reyes of this vd sounds great (better that the one I tried).
In this case, same player, microphone, settings and piece.

https://youtu.be/KXk6o9LkA-U
https://youtu.be/tjLezu42Gxg
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 7 2017 10:46:29
 
Morante

 

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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

quote:

Reyes hijo, DeVoe, Barba, Conde etc


Reyes padre belongs in this list but hijo does not.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 7 2017 15:22:35
 
Echi

 

Posts: 949
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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

quote:

Marin Montero and Bellido whose guitars are very cheap if you compare them with those of other top makers (Reyes hijo, DeVoe, Barba, Conde etc..)

I was speaking of the price. I don't know how much is a Rejes hijo in Spain in these days but I was told it's more expensive than a Marin Montero or a Bellido ( around 5000 euro).
Btw Reyes made around 1000 guitars in his career, so the availability of his guitars shouldn't be not so bad.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 7 2017 22:32:40
 
TANúñez

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From: TEXAS

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

In the end, the only thing that matters is if it's worth it to you. That goes for every guitar.

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Tom Núñez
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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 15 2017 13:51:57
 
Tom Blackshear

 

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 21 2017 19:28:35
 
Tom Blackshear

 

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2017 13:46:37
 
Echi

 

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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

Of course the 2 guitars are definitely different.

I didn't mean to compare Bellido and Reyes, but just to offer an element to answer the question heading the present 3D.
In this case there was a rare occasion for a comparison, having same mic settings, music and player.
If you ask me, I'd probably prefer the sound of that Reyes guitar but I for one wouldn't pay the 10.000 Euro difference in price. At least not for the mere sound.

Btw, in this case we have a similar profile of maker as Josè Lopez Bellido is an esteemed maker with 50 years of career on the shoulders, who made almost the same number of guitars as Reyes (around 1000) and with some famous customers as well (Juan Habichuela, El Amir etc. ).
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2017 15:19:48
 
Tom Blackshear

 

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2017 18:40:33
 
Echi

 

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RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

I consider Reyes as a master craftsman.

Coming back to the 2 guitars above, my question is: in fairness, if you were a player, would you spend 10000 dollars more for the Reyes just because of the tonal differences between these 2 guitars?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2017 19:28:52
 
RobJe

 

Posts: 727
Joined: Dec. 16 2006
From: UK

RE: Is Manuel Reyes Sr. overrated? (in reply to Echi

You have explained how you feel about the value for money of Reyes guitars. It probably doesn’t need pushing any further. Yes, collectors might push up the prices but you normally need a very good reputation before this happens.

I notice that the two recordings you posted were about 20 months apart by which time Pedro had grown a beard so the claim of “same settings” could be a bit unreliable.

Rob
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2017 21:10:33
 
Tom Blackshear

 

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Jan. 23 2017 21:57:28
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