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Thread: Guild X160 Rockabilly Review

  1. #1

    Guild X160 Rockabilly Review

    Yeah, this one took forever. You tell me if it was worth it.

    https://www.gad.net/Blog/2019/07/21/...60-rockabilly/

    '70s: [ S70 | S300ADs ]
    '80s: [ X79-3 | X80s | X82 | X100 | X175 | S281 | BHM1 ]
    '80s: [ Detonator | Liberator + Elite | SF4 | AA ]
    '90s: [ S100 | X160 | X170 | X170T | SF3,5 | BB | NB | NB DX ]
    '90s: [ X2000 | X3000 | X4000s | DV72 | BHM1 | JF30-12 | Songbird ]
    '00s: [ SF3 | SF4 | B-90 | BB-90 | X160R | X500T | D55 ]
    '10s:
    [ Jetstar | R30 | D55 ]

    My Reviews: GADsGuilds.com

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Default's Avatar
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    Noice! You brought GAS back into my life!
    "Steve, you are a man of many goats."~ capnjuan

    "Alternatively, you could just go the ultra-relic route with it. Basically go for a look that says the amp was on fire and they put it out using belt sanders."
    (amps - I need a "99" & "50")

  3. #3
    Senior Member Walter Broes's Avatar
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    I still kind of want a black one, but I'm too cheap when it comes to more "recent" guitars. (yes, I guess I'm showing my age when I call the X160 recent...haha)

    "Although Fender had owned Guild since 1995, the 2000 catalog is the first one where Guild was combined into the Fender Frontline catalog, and the text there mentions that the recipe for rockabilly is to take a Guild X500T or X160 and plug it into a Fender reverb tank and then into a Fender Bassman. I certainly can’t argue with that formula, though I think that’s more of a surf thing than a rockabilly thing, but I guess Fender hadn’t bought Roland so they couldn’t throw in a Space Echo mention. Remember that the Brian Setzer Orchestra was huge around this time and he played (and still plays) through a ’63 Bassman, so that’s probably what Fender was trying to capitalize on."

    Guild wasn't capitalizing on Setzer's piggyback blond tolex bassman - Dave Gonzalez of the Paladins was Guild's "Rockabilly star endorser" at that time, the X500T was built for him, even though somebody at FMIC must have screwed up and the regular humbucker X500 of that time somehow ended up with the "X500 Paladin" name, at least in some literature. Guild initially gave Dave an X160 too, but he wasn't a fan of the "new" 2000 pickups.
    But to get back to the amp thing : a Fender reverb tank and a reissue 4X10 bassman (plus an echoplex, earlier on) was (and is) Dave's preferred rig, so that's most likely what that bit of catalog prose was referring to.

    I'm pretty sure the X160's never came with the 2K pickups as stock equipment, the 2K's were on the DeArmond branded guitars, and they also made an appearance on a custom shop Fender set neck telecaster that was kind of inspired by a Les Paul special.

    Also, I think (through Hans might correct me on this) that this was the era that the all aluminium Bigsby type archtop bridge appeared on Guilds that was compensated for a plain G string, and the X160 Rockabilly and X500T had those as factory spec. (in gold on the X500)

    The 2000 pickups sound great, but lack a little "oomph" on stage in my experience, and a little beef on the bottom end. I'm willing to bet that if you like the guitar in stock configuration, you might really fall in love with it if you put a pair of original (vintage) DeArmonds, TV Jones T-Armonds or Duncan Dynos on it - they have that bright Fendery twang on top like the stock 160's pickups have, but with more beef and bottom end, and they hit an amp about as hard as a healthy P90. One way to tame the brightness on any DeArmond pickup of this type (they cān get harsh into the wrong amp) is pure nickel strings they work great with these pickups, and twang like a classic Duane Eddy record.

    -

    -1960 CE100D
    -1961 Starfire III Special
    -1962 X175
    -1963X175
    -2011 F47R
    -2015 Newark Street X175 BLK

  4. #4
    Great review as usual! I concur with all your wrote, though my experience with the sound of the guitar was a little different than yours. My X-160 was good and certainly pleasant enough, but not exceptional. I sold it because I much preferred the sound of my Dyna-equipped Gretsch 6120DSV for the reasons Walter mentioned.
    Last edited by GGJaguar; 07-22-2019 at 12:58 AM.

  5. #5
    Nice Review GAD. Damn I miss my Baby, She sounded great through your Demos. The slinkies sound nice but I really liked the Nickel flats on her for running through my amp setup. They added that deep oomph to the neck while still allowing the bridge to have all of it's glorious twang minus the harshness. I agree completely that the middle position is pure magic in any case. Take care of my baby girl!

    TX
    Guilds
    Hoboken-1960 X175, 1961 SF-II
    Westerly-1971 F612, 2000 SF-V, 1984 S284
    Nashville C.S. SFIV-3 P90 w/Trem, 2000 JF65-CE
    Corona-2003 Fleming F47-Brz RW, 2003 D55 50th Brz #10 of 50, 2003 SF-III-90
    Conn-2011 GSR D50 Coco, 2011 F212XL STD, 2013 R30S, 2013 Orph Jumbo, 2014 Orph Burst 000-12 Fret 12 String S.H. RW, 2012 F50-DTAR, 2012 F50R Burst, 2012 F50R DTAR, 2013 F512 Burst, 2014 F512-DTAR, 2014 D55-RS, 2014 GSR X500D

    Amps
    70 T-bird 2x12
    93 Sequoia

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by txbumper57 View Post
    Nice Review GAD. Damn I miss my Baby, She sounded great through your Demos. The slinkies sound nice but I really liked the Nickel flats on her for running through my amp setup. They added that deep oomph to the neck while still allowing the bridge to have all of it's glorious twang minus the harshness. I agree completely that the middle position is pure magic in any case. Take care of my baby girl!

    TX
    You're the only guy I'd sell it to, so if you want it back just say the word.
    '70s: [ S70 | S300ADs ]
    '80s: [ X79-3 | X80s | X82 | X100 | X175 | S281 | BHM1 ]
    '80s: [ Detonator | Liberator + Elite | SF4 | AA ]
    '90s: [ S100 | X160 | X170 | X170T | SF3,5 | BB | NB | NB DX ]
    '90s: [ X2000 | X3000 | X4000s | DV72 | BHM1 | JF30-12 | Songbird ]
    '00s: [ SF3 | SF4 | B-90 | BB-90 | X160R | X500T | D55 ]
    '10s:
    [ Jetstar | R30 | D55 ]

    My Reviews: GADsGuilds.com

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by GAD View Post
    You're the only guy I'd sell it to, so if you want it back just say the word.
    As soon as I get some of Mom's Chemo bills paid down I may just take you up on that offer. Thanks man!

    TX
    Guilds
    Hoboken-1960 X175, 1961 SF-II
    Westerly-1971 F612, 2000 SF-V, 1984 S284
    Nashville C.S. SFIV-3 P90 w/Trem, 2000 JF65-CE
    Corona-2003 Fleming F47-Brz RW, 2003 D55 50th Brz #10 of 50, 2003 SF-III-90
    Conn-2011 GSR D50 Coco, 2011 F212XL STD, 2013 R30S, 2013 Orph Jumbo, 2014 Orph Burst 000-12 Fret 12 String S.H. RW, 2012 F50-DTAR, 2012 F50R Burst, 2012 F50R DTAR, 2013 F512 Burst, 2014 F512-DTAR, 2014 D55-RS, 2014 GSR X500D

    Amps
    70 T-bird 2x12
    93 Sequoia

  8. #8
    Senior Member walrus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    Massachusetts
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    13,512
    Great review, GAD!

    walrus
    2011 Guild F-30RCE
    2008 PRS Hollowbody Spruce

  9. #9
    Very fun read. It’s pretty amazing nobody at Guild noticed that the X160 and X161 were the same thing, or at least weren’t clearly differentiated in their literature. Just part of the fun when visiting Guild world!
    Thanks, GAD, I hope to get a chance to play an X160 (or X161) someday.
    Shihan= Dennis

  10. #10
    I second Walter's recommendation of pure nickel strings…they take some of the edge off sharp-sounding pickups without making 'em sound dull.

    -Dave-
    1962 F-20 Troubadour
    1970 M-75 Bluesbird
    1971 S-100 "Black Cherry"
    1973 S-100 "Nature Boy"
    1990 Nightbird Custom
    1999 X-170T
    2013 NS M-75 Aristocrat
    2016 NS S-200 T-bird

    c. 1971 Foxey Lady

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