Alembic Tribute review

Alembic Tribute review

Postby mijknahs » Mon Apr 11, 2011 5:00 pm

I got a chance to play a Alembic Tribute (made around 2005) the other day and must say I was really impressed with the quality and craftsmanship. Also it played so smooth (like butter) everywhere on the neck. It was really an amazing feel. This was colobolo/maple/cocobolo sandwich with flame maple neck and leds on the side.

What I didn't like most of all was the sound of the Alembic pickups. They were super clean and way too bright and thin sounding. They didn't growl. I think ANY passive pickups (with UGB) would have sounded better. Of course you can cut the highs and change the tone (the tone control almost sounds/acts like a wah pedal) but you need to roll off quite a bit of highs to get a good sound. I'm used to having the tone full blast.

Also, the price of Alembics is ridiculous. Much rather spend less on a Matt Moriarity and have it look exactly how I want with the pickups and electronics I want. But if anyone were to give me an Alembic (or make me an offer I couldn't refuse - i.e. really cheap), then I'd re-do the electronics and probably be very happy with the guitar.
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Re: Alembic Tribute review

Postby playingdead » Mon Apr 11, 2011 7:18 pm

They flat-out refuse to build them with anything but their own electronics in 'em ... and by the time you take the base Tribute anywhere with some inlays beyond the oval stock inlays on the neck you are waaay into 5 figure territory.

I did consider building a Further before I went with what I wound up with, and actually had a deposit down, but their refusal to budge on the electronics made me reconsider. No point paying all that money for a guitar and then tearing out the guts right away.

I was surprised how small the Further is when I got a righty one in my hands ... not sure I would have bonded with it in the end.

They are beautifully made, the finish is like glass, but I'm not a fan of their electronics, either.

My Walker feels great in my hands at a fraction of the cost of an Alembic, and Scott will do anything you can think of.
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Re: Alembic Tribute review

Postby bpg21 » Tue Apr 12, 2011 2:26 am

playingdead wrote:I was surprised how small the Further is when I got a righty one in my hands ...


I too got to play both the Further and Tribute ( Ed Roman Guitars in Las Vegas). and the Wolf body is not much larger than a Fender Mustang. Both the original Wolf and Tiger had small bodies. I've noticed alot of Tiger copies(Tribute included) have relatively large bodies.
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Re: Alembic Tribute review

Postby Emoto » Tue Apr 12, 2011 5:39 am

bpg21 wrote:
playingdead wrote:I was surprised how small the Further is when I got a righty one in my hands ...


I too got to play both the Further and Tribute ( Ed Roman Guitars in Las Vegas). and the Wolf body is not much larger than a Fender Mustang. Both the original Wolf and Tiger had small bodies. I've noticed alot of Tiger copies(Tribute included) have relatively large bodies.


Wow, I hadn't heard that name in a while. Used to deal with him in the late 70s/early 80s when he had a shop in Danbury, CT. I never had a truly bad experience with him, but in those days all his clerks were "rock stars" if you know what I mean, who acted like they were doing you a favor to sell you something. Ed always seemed a little sketchy, and those of us in area bands referred to him as "Sluggo". :lol:
Such a long, long time to be gone, and a short time to be there...
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Re: Alembic Tribute review

Postby tcsned » Tue Apr 12, 2011 8:07 am

Emoto wrote:Wow, I hadn't heard that name in a while. Used to deal with him in the late 70s/early 80s when he had a shop in Danbury, CT. I never had a truly bad experience with him, but in those days all his clerks were "rock stars" if you know what I mean, who acted like they were doing you a favor to sell you something. Ed always seemed a little sketchy, and those of us in area bands referred to him as "Sluggo". :lol:

then he must be right at home in Vegas . . . maybe too moral for that town :lol:
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Re: Alembic Tribute review

Postby bdhact1 » Tue Apr 12, 2011 8:57 am

Emoto wrote:
bpg21 wrote:
playingdead wrote:I was surprised how small the Further is when I got a righty one in my hands ...


I too got to play both the Further and Tribute ( Ed Roman Guitars in Las Vegas). and the Wolf body is not much larger than a Fender Mustang. Both the original Wolf and Tiger had small bodies. I've noticed alot of Tiger copies(Tribute included) have relatively large bodies.


Wow, I hadn't heard that name in a while. Used to deal with him in the late 70s/early 80s when he had a shop in Danbury, CT. I never had a truly bad experience with him, but in those days all his clerks were "rock stars" if you know what I mean, who acted like they were doing you a favor to sell you something. Ed always seemed a little sketchy, and those of us in area bands referred to him as "Sluggo". :lol:



Are you talking about East Coast Sound? They used to be on Main Street in Danbury till they moved to Candlewood Lake area and became East Coast Music Mall.
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Re: Alembic Tribute review

Postby jenkins » Tue Apr 12, 2011 10:06 am

The question is: If he was still alive, would jerry have been using the alembic electronics or sticking with the dimarazio's?
Its obviously almost impossible to say but I think he would be using them. His tone in the 90's was going towards super clean and bright. He definitely didn't have the growl that he did. I think jerry's tone was going towards what the alembics sound like and they continued trying to do what jerry was tryin to do with his tone.

Did jerry work with alembic in the 90's at all? Does anyone who worked on jerry's guitars work at alembic now? I wonder what jerry thought about the alembic axe's.
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Re: Alembic Tribute review

Postby Rusty the Scoob » Tue Apr 12, 2011 10:56 am

Personally I suspect that Alembic just sticks a version of their bass electronics into their guitars. They sound very similarly designed from all the descriptions I've read, and the goals of good bass electronics are punchy, tight, clean, etc - all the same complaints that people have about Alembics guitar electronics. "Sterile" is good for a bass, bad for a guitar.
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Re: Alembic Tribute review

Postby mijknahs » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:24 pm

jenkins wrote:The question is: If he was still alive, would jerry have been using the alembic electronics or sticking with the dimarazio's?
Its obviously almost impossible to say but I think he would be using them. His tone in the 90's was going towards super clean and bright. He definitely didn't have the growl that he did. I think jerry's tone was going towards what the alembics sound like and they continued trying to do what jerry was tryin to do with his tone.

Did jerry work with alembic in the 90's at all? Does anyone who worked on jerry's guitars work at alembic now? I wonder what jerry thought about the alembic axe's.


Alembic electronics (pickups, filter, etc.) have been around for a long time. These are not "new" electronics or anything. I don't know what Jerry was thinking in the last few years. I don't think he could really hear what was going on "out front". Maybe it sounded fine in his little ear monitor? I doubt he really liked a sterile, brittle sound in my opinion. He just lost control of the tone when the speakers disappeared from the stage.

Jerry hadn't worked with Alembic since Doug Irwin left. Phil was probably the last person in the GD to work with Alembic. Jerry was happy with the guitars he had and had no reason to approach Alembic.
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Re: Alembic Tribute review

Postby jdsmodulus » Tue Apr 12, 2011 1:06 pm

After seeing the Vintage Guitar issue with the Bolt, I wonder how long JG would have playd it live. That guitar was beat up in a very short amount of time compared to the Irwins. I think he would have used some sort of Modulus hybrid guitar. He seemed to talk about that alot and BW was such an advocate plus the fact that we lost Cripe as well. Maybe we would have seen Top Hat or Headless? We will never know but I dont think he would have used an Alembic its just not the same direction thinking back to 95.
Closer to the thread I would love to try one but they just are too expensive for me to consider buying.
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