The Parker Guitars Forum

General Discussion => GENERAL DISCUSSION => Topic started by: axejock on May 14, 2018, 11:28:25 PM

Title: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 14, 2018, 11:28:25 PM
I just bought a "like new" (rarely played) Parker guitar from a friend who is quite ill and selling off his herd. I own lots of guitars, but this my first Parker. It was bought new from Sweetwater in 2012 and is a DF-724 (radial) model in the "Black Burst" color. Can anyone decipher from my serial number the exact date of production? The serial number is: 111006 and it was made in the USA. It is truly a remarkable guitar....I'm surprised that I never ran into one before! Thanks
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 14, 2018, 11:39:31 PM
Oops, that serial number in my post just above is 1110006. (Three 0's instead of two).
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on May 15, 2018, 12:53:20 AM
I think you can be confident that it was made in 2011 (11) in October (10). The meaning of (006) is unclear - possibly the 6th instrument of the month.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 15, 2018, 03:18:07 PM
Thanks for that information. I have read more about these guitars, and found out that my guitar is called a "Maxx Fly, Radial". Now I am wondering where this guitar fits in the Parker family. I know that it is a newer model that was made in the USA, has Seymore Duncans in HSS arrangement, a piezo set up at the bridge, a tremolo arm, and quite a few other things, but a less radical look on the upper horn than the original Fly series. I also know that the original owner paid $2750 for it new in 2012. So, where does this guitar "fit" in the Parker line-up? Is it a desirable model and where does it fit in the pricing structure for other models of the Parker guitars? I know that I sure like it, but also realize that I am woefully ignorant about this brand! Any info or opinions appreciated. Thanks.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: billy on May 15, 2018, 04:33:19 PM
Pretty nice guitar in my opinion, not sure they made too many of them before they stopped all production.  I wish I could've bought one.

The body shape reflects an offering intended to eliminate the sharp corner of the upper horn on the original flys- some found it uncomfortable and/or unattractive.

They don't have the carbon fiber fretboard, back, and the glued in neck joint that most fly owners swear by, but USA made.  So all things considered, I'd say it's towards the "higher" end of the line up, but not at the top.

Some specs here:
http://www.parkerguitars.com/products/mfradial/DF724.html

Post some pictures!  You have to host the image elsewhere, and then paste the link using the little button under the "B" for bold type.

Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Mr303 on May 15, 2018, 05:36:25 PM
Pretty nice guitar in my opinion, not sure they made too many of them before they stopped all production.  I wish I could've bought one.

The body shape reflects an offering intended to eliminate the sharp corner of the upper horn on the original flys- some found it uncomfortable and/or unattractive.

They don't have the carbon fiber fretboard, back, and the glued in neck joint that most fly owners swear by, but USA made.  So all things considered, I'd say it's towards the "higher" end of the line up, but not at the top.

Some specs here:
http://www.parkerguitars.com/products/mfradial/DF724.html

Post some pictures!  You have to host the image elsewhere, and then paste the link using the little button under the "B" for bold type.


I believe long time forum member and working musician Notes_Norton uses his custom DF performing.

Paste this

http://www.parkerguitars.com/support/catalogs

And search the catalogs.....it’s good reading sorta like Scientific American or an encyclopedia but for Parker’s.

I downloaded all the catalogs I could just in case the website goes toes up sometime in the future.

Have fun with that axe!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 15, 2018, 07:43:48 PM
I don't have any photos of this axe yet, but if you look at the link that SHAZAM posted above, it shows all specs and colors that the guitar has. Mine is the black burst which is absolutely gorgeous....from a distance, it looks plain black, but up close and in bright lights it is easy to see the woodgrain on the center part of the top and how it blends out into the black borders. I looked this guitar over very closely today, and it is in absolutely new condition....not even a nick or a scratch anywhere. Even the custom Parker case is in perfect shape. The seller really never used this thing!! I know that the guitar has never been serviced or adjusted since it left Sweetwater, and the strings are the originals. Funny, but the G string on the guitar is unwound, so the 3 high strings are all single wire. Is that a Parker thing? Also, the instructions for adjusting the trem bridge if you do a string size change are fairly complex. I love stuff like that! And the tuners are amazing....again, a new realization for me. And everything on the guitar works and is set up perfectly. And the sound is incredible. I can see why there is a devoted following of these guitars!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on May 16, 2018, 03:07:15 PM
<...snip...>
I believe long time forum member and working musician Notes_Norton uses his custom DF performing.

<...>
Correct. I have two DFs. A DF524NS that has the same pickup configuration that you have and a DF522NN (NN for Notes Norton) that I had the factory install Duncan P-Rails with Triple Shot Rings.

The 724 is higher end than mine, but I think only for the finish. I prefer natural wood so it worked out fine for me. What you have is IMHO an improved version of an SSH Strat design. The neck has a longer radius (which I personally like), the frets are hardened stainless steel, and with the Sperzal tuners, Graph Tech nut and Parker Whammy Bridge the tuning stability is excellent.

I think the DF series is the high-end non-carbon encased guitars that Parker made. I also think it's a shame they went under, because they are excellent guitars.

The Duncan pickups give you everything a Strat can, and the ability to blend the piezo with the mag pickups gives you many more tone options.

The Radial Design is the fact that the bolt-on neck is curved instead of square so it fits in the pocket without shifting.

I loved my DF522NS but I was missing the sound of P90 pickups. There is something about the bite and the clarity of tone of the P90, especially when playing clean (with a little reverb) that spoils me. If I don't have it, everything else sounds dull. So I had the factory make one with P-Rail pickups. With the Triple Shot rings they give me P90, Rail, Series Humbucker and Parallel Humbucker tones. Blending the Piezo gives me grit and twang when I need it. So the 522 is my only gigging guitar.

On stage I play sax, flute, wind synthesizer, guitar, vocals, and MIDI percussion controller (I also play bass, keys and drums but one can only schlep so much to the gig).  The light weight of the guitar is welcome. Before Parker I was playing a faux-Les Paul that weighed 8 pounds. I sometimes switch instruments every song or two so you can see why light weight is a benefit. And I sacrifice nothing in either tone or sustain.

So IMHO you have an excellent gigging guitar that can do anything a strat can do, plus a few things a strat cannot do.

(http://www.nortonmusic.com/pix/NN01_2Parkers.jpg)

Insights and incites by Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on May 16, 2018, 05:01:22 PM
Thanks for that information. I have read more about these guitars, and found out that my guitar is called a "Maxx Fly, Radial". Now I am wondering where this guitar fits in the Parker family.

You should also look at the newer Nitefly Radial models. They are exactly the same guitar as the Maxxfly Radials, but with a Fly body shape and different mag pickup switch. I had one of each in my possession and they were both outstanding guitars for a "traditional" build (bolt on neck). About $2k when new, so cheaper than a carbon fly, but definitely not a cheap guitar.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 16, 2018, 08:21:51 PM
I have a LOT of guitars including Strats, Teles, Les Pauls, ES339, PRS S2 Stella, Martin, and even some Yamaha's and custom brands. I enjoy them all, but this Parker is definitely in a class of its own. It is like an HSS Strat in ways, but has capabilities that I have not seen embodied in a single guitar. And the light weight is amazing. I really like this guitar, and it is definitely "stage ready".  I really appreciate all the info you guys are providing on this axe, as I really just bought it to help a friend out and because it looked cool. But I really had no idea what it was all about. I guess even a blind dog finds a bone once in a while!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Mr303 on May 17, 2018, 07:53:11 AM
I wasn’t ever able to test drive a Parker until I met TaxguyDave on here and got to play my ‘97 deluxe that I eventually bought from him. 

These guitars are unlike any other and until you have one to use that fact doesn’t really hit home....but afterwards, I’ll never let mine go now.

Are we going to see a new design in 2018?, I hope so but I’m skeptical because it would be hard to improve on the old versions imho.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on May 17, 2018, 06:44:22 PM
My duo partner got a PM10, and I was very impressed with the build and quality. A couple of years later when the Dragonfly came out (before it was renamed to Maxxfly) I saw an ad and started thinking about it.

My duo partner who is also my wife heard me talking and immediately told me I needed a better guitar (having a guitarist wife is good) so I bought one at Musician's Friend. They sent the wrong guitar a MIDI ready Fly that was way more than I wanted. They told me I could keep it for the price I paid for the DF. I sold the MIDI guitar, bought my first DF, and ended up with $85 more than I started with. What's better than a free guitar? A free guitar and $85.

Musician's friend said they would take it back, but didn't have what I wanted anymore and wouldn't get it for months, which is why I took up their generous offer.

Then when I decided I wanted the custom job, I called Parker and waited 7 months for it to arrive (I suspect they were already in deep trouble by then). But it was worth the wait. I bring the DF522NN to the gig and love it.

There is one problem, I'm so in love with the Parkers, that I no longer have GAS. I can look at cool new guitars, admire their beauty, but I have no urge to buy them. The Parker is extremely comfortable to play and sounds great.

Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 17, 2018, 11:13:09 PM
Boy, Notes_Norton, you sound like the kind of musician that many of us would like to aspire to be, but I could never master the sax or keyboards! Very impressive! I've played bass, some drums, but let a darn business career get in my way for a long time and am just now really getting back into music, but limited to 6 string guitars. I have to admit that playing this Parker makes me look at my other guitars a little differently. Your SD equipped DF looks exactly like mine without the fancy paint work. But like you, I like the "bare wood" look too.
Here's a fundamental question that maybe someone could answer. What is the difference between a DF guitar and a PDF guitar? Also, when did the original Parker company start to have operating troubles and stop delivering guitars? I see that they have a 2018 catalogue out....is it for the same guitars made the same way, or did someone buy them out? Around my small town, this Parker is a real curiosity to my jamming friends!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: billy on May 18, 2018, 09:26:02 AM
The pdf series were manufactured overseas in various east asian factories.  Quality might vary a bit as a result.  The pdf heel is less contoured than the DF series.

The DF were made in the US, with different options designated by the series number, ie 524, 624, 724, 842, 1024.  The last two digits refers to the pickup options, usually a 24 or 42.

The 800 series are the only ones with the carbon skin and fretboard, all the other DFs have bolt on necks. 

The 1000 series had "premium" woods, like koa, and a carbon fiber fretboard w/stainless frets but not the carbon skin.  I'm not sure if any of the other bolt on DFs have the carbon fretboard too, but you can check the specs on the parker site.

They stopped production in early 2015 or so I think, after years of slow sales, relocations, etc. 

Many of the USM brands suffered around the same time frame but without more inside info, I won't speculate on why.  There's at least a few other threads here that offer opinions, and lots of other more useful info too. Looking forward to a relaunch, if it happens.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on May 18, 2018, 10:11:49 AM
Boy, Notes_Norton, you sound like the kind of musician that many of us would like to aspire to be, but I could never master the sax or keyboards! <...>
I've been playing pro since 1964. When you don't have to have a day job, and can devote your life to music, the time you put in yields rewards. If you have any talent at all, it just takes putting the time in. I also don't watch TV at all - zero - zilch (no cable, no antenna, no digital converter) - but probably waste too much time on the Internet ;) I probably spend at least 15 hours a day doing music. And I love it.

I gig for a living, I've played everything from seedy dives to show clubs to cruise ships to casinos to the opening act for major stars in concert and just about anything in between. I learned woodwinds, drums, and theory in school -- and in all the bands I've been in, I was taught guitar, bass, and keys by the people who played those instruments for a living.

Not every songwriter has the good sense to put a sax part in every song, so gigging for a living meant either tambourine or learn to play other instruments. I chose other instruments. So if there was no sax part, I could play bass, rhythm guitar, or keys. In one band the drummer also sang lead and played trombone, so I could do a few songs on the drums while he went out front.

I'm currently in a duo with my wife, who plays guitar and synth plus sings like an angel. We are mated extremely well, and although we work hard, it feels like we are just goofing off. http://www.s-cats.com

The world is downsized, and the pay for a duo is almost as much as a 5 piece band around here. I make my own backing tracks so they can be done in our key, our arrangement, and leave plenty of room for me to solo on sax, flute, wind synth, or guitar (self-indulgent I know, but it's fun).

BTW, I don't think I've mastered anything, because the more I learn, the more I realize there is more to know. However on sax, wind synth, I think I'm way better than average (I was first sax in the all-state band every year I was in school), I played bass for a few years when sax wasn't in demand, I sing OK, and I do enough guitar, drums, and keys to double on the instruments, but wouldn't audition in a band to do only one of those instruments.

I also write aftermarket styles for Band-in-a-Box. It lets me apply the musical arranging and theory I learned in school to some degree. http://www.nortonmusic.com

But there is no job security, no sick leave, no paid vacations, no employer contributions to a pension, and 15% self-employment tax here in the USA. It's not for everybody. Fortunately, I got lucky enough to be able to make a decent but by no means luxurious living from music. I paid off the mortgage, and take a vacation every year, often overseas.

* * *

On PDF guitars, they are made overseas, someone please correct me if I'm wrong about these things (1) the frets aren't hardened stainless steel (2) the fingerboard isn't ebony (3) the body wood is different resulting in a heavier guitar (4) the hardware isn't as good as the USA guitars.

That doesn't mean they are bad guitars, just not as good, and not as expensive.

* * *

It's too bad too few guitar players tried Parkers. Everybody seems to be in the "major brand camp". I did a recording session (on sax) with a guitarist. I told him about my Parker and his attitude was anything that wasn't Gibson or Fender was crap. How are  you going to find anything better if your mind is closed? And I have a Gibson and Epiphone and I've tried a few Fenders (hate the short neck radius but the rest of the guitar is OK), and I've played quite a few guitars that belonged to the guitarist in the bands I was in. I think the Parker is at least as good and IMHO better than most anything out there.

My other guitars are jealous because I hardly ever touch them. I'm slowly selling them off. I'll probably get down to one archtop electric and my two Parkers.

I hope my Parkers will last for the rest of my life, or until somebody comes up with something even better for my needs.

Insights and incites by Notes.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 18, 2018, 05:57:26 PM
I started playing guitar in about 1962 and played in a good local "rock band" for about 4 years...actually made money doing it which allowed me to buy my first "real" guitar, a Fender Tele! I then had the pleasure of being drafted into the Viet Nam war, survived, and went on to graduate from college and execute a 40 year career. During that career, I had a simple Yamaha acoustic guitar that I played to at least keep some ability alive. After I retired, I rekindled my guitar playing and quickly found myself with a heck of a case of GAS! But I didn't just buy the most popular or flashy models available, but rather looked for high quality instruments that offered outstanding performance and workmanship and, especially, unique features...I love having something that not everybody else has. This Parker (though not a part of my GAS problem....I actually bought it to help a friend out) probably fits that bill better than any other guitar that I have bought. Once I buy these things, I rarely sell them as they all have something that I feel is special. I even have a custom built, 12 string, solid body electric guitar with dual humbuckers on it. Not a run-of-the-mill guitar, but fascinating to me.
So, once I add an instrument to my herd, it definitely stays there, meaning this Parker will have a great home!! And I DO play all of my guitars from time to time just to handle them and enjoy their features.
By the way, has anybody seen the new Boss guitar that has been released that has so many electronics on board, that the lower strings can make sounds that simulate a drum beat while the melody is played on the upper strings? I saw a video on it....very difficult to play, but features that bogle the mind!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Mr303 on May 19, 2018, 11:41:01 AM
Notes quote: On PDF guitars, they are made overseas, someone please correct me if I'm wrong about these things (1) the frets aren't hardened stainless steel (2) the fingerboard isn't ebony (3) the body wood is different resulting in a heavier guitar (4) the hardware isn't as good as the USA guitars.

My PDF’s have rosewood finger boards, Spertzle locking machine heads(lower end) and are heavier than the Fly’s but still lighter than run-o-the-mill guitars, with jumbo stainless steel frets.
 Neck radius is rounder than a “shred neck” and not as comfortable as a Fly profile. My 70 is painted very well and the 105 has a beautiful sunburst maple burl top, the PM20 Pro has one of the nicest black fading into the mahogany finish jobs I have ever seen. I’ve played custom DF series and you couldn’t tell any quality difference in the finish but the set-up and overall playability was noticeably improved by the hand tweaking by an expert luthier.
I haven’t seen or used any PDF’s or PM series that were noticeably lower end fit or finish wise and I’d be happy to own any model including a Nitefly.

Harsh reality is I’ll never be able to quit my day job and be a musician.....oh wait ...I realized that many moons ago.
Cheers!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on May 19, 2018, 03:30:53 PM
<...snip...>
Harsh reality is I’ll never be able to quit my day job and be a musician.....oh wait ...I realized that many moons ago.
Cheers!
Harsh reality is that if I can no longer be a musician, I'm probably unemployable. But I have no intention of quitting my night job. :)

I'm lucky to have been born in a generation where one could make a living doing music and nothing but music. I think it's more difficult now.

When I grew up every hotel bar from a Holiday Inn hotel on up, every singles bar, every adults bar, and every popular bar had a live show in it, probably 90% bands. And they all had bands 6 or 7 nights per week. I even played in a strip club when I was 18 and the dancers disrobed to live music (great gig for a hormone overloaded 18 year old.)

There were no "open mic nights", no sports bars, anything bigger than a dozen bar stool tavern didn't have a TV in it, no DJs, and anything with a juke box in it was not a cool place to hang out. Of course, most of us were cover bands, but learning to be a "tribute band" to dozens and dozens of successful bands was good schooling in it's own way. How did Plas Johnson play that riff? How did Hal Blaine play that drum fill? and so on.

And because the technology wasn't here the bands were 4 to 7 piece. I got to travel to just about every state east of the Rockies, eventually as a warm up band for major headliners, made money, had delightful mutually exciting relations with many girls, and was treated as a peer by the likes of Rick Derringer, Junior Walker, Eric Burdon, The Funk Brothers, Tom Scott, and so many more. A dream life.

Today I'm an "almost made it" but at least I'm not a "has been" :D

There are plenty of better guitarists than me on this forum as it's my seventh instrument. But playing sax in a lot of very good bands I had a lot of good guitar teachers, so when I decided to take lead up seriously I took to it quickly and got adequate fast. But it's my 7th instrument, and I have to learn new songs for the duo, make the backing tracks, and also keep the Band-in-a-Box aftermarket business running, I don't have as much time as I'd like to practice, so I'll probably be decent but not great for a long time, and I'm OK with that. My main voice is my sax and wind synth anyway.

But (back on topic) I've played enough guitars to know the Parkers I own are great guitars. They sound great and are easier to play than the others I've tried. And if the guitar is easy to play, comfortable, well balanced, and ergonomic, most people can play better on them. And that's what we all want to do, play better.

Well, it's Saturday, so I have to go to work  (play).

Notes

Please excuse any missing letters, my keyboard seems to be skipping a little :(
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Big Swifty on May 20, 2018, 02:41:15 AM
Nice work Notes, great story.

Technology....it'll be the end of us.

I love it, we all love it, and rely on it.

But the price we pay as a society...as a community (in that real life out there)..all (not so) slowly being insidiously undermined, usurped by corporation, company, start-up, gaming, social media, on-line community etc etc, all driven by profit and growth and which we have gladly, inadvertently, invited into every aspect of life where it thrives like your neighbours punk of a creeper plant-thing growing over the fence, finding it's way into all the cracks, slowly tearing the whole thing apart...

We will be nought but rubble.

Sand.

And not the stuff at the beach, no no no!

But in a large glass display in the foyer of corporate HQ; a playground for child-kings to build temporary castles....

As technology sells the power of the individual, so too does society weaken.

Resit comrades, resist!!

 8)

B.S.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Mr303 on May 20, 2018, 06:49:17 AM
Dan Hicks and his Hot Licks play it well....er say it well?

Technology has been an issue for a long time :)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iAOFsuUofcc


I met Dan a couple times over the years of going to his shows.
 He always remembered me even if it was a couple years later and the entire band was fun to talk to without
pretense or ego.


That man could play guitar!
 He is well known for “I scare myself” but Canned Music is a favorite since I abuse innocent guitars.

Beware the drummer

Cheers!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 20, 2018, 03:36:43 PM
Wow! I fully agree that technology is taking over the world, including music production, and that it threatens an awfully lot of our traditions and older realities. I'm just glad that the bulk of my life was lived before this technology revolution, and I got to actually do things with my own skills and brain capacity! But I really don't think the idea of playing an instrument will die because of technology. It is now being used to eliminate the traditional rock/blues/jazz bands, but the venues that appreciate live concerts are still there and will want to see something more than a "black box" sitting on stage pumping out any sound you can feed it. Also, many of the computerized music generators and electronic driven sound effects are really cool! And nothing will replace the satisfaction of owning and learning to play a fine instrument like a Parker guitar....at least not in my remaining years!
By the way, just to show my ignorance, what is a "synth"?
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 20, 2018, 06:04:15 PM
Oh, and to further illustrate my ignorance Notes, what is "Band in a box"? Terminology and technology have apparently left me behind worse than I realized!!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on May 21, 2018, 10:54:23 AM
Oh, and to further illustrate my ignorance Notes, what is "Band in a box"? Terminology and technology have apparently left me behind worse than I realized!!
Band-in-a-Box is a computer program for Windows and Mac computers. It is primarily an auto-accompaniment app with a lot of extra features.

Basically what it does is turn your computer into something similar to those 'arranger keyboards' that will play drums, bass, and other instruments in the background. There are thousands of different styles available, a few hundred of which I wrote and sell as aftermarket add-ons.

There are notable differences, BiaB can play up to 5 instruments, and since you enter the chords with your computer keyboard (spelling them out like Gm7 or F6, etc.) it knows what chord is coming next, and in what context of the song that chord occupies. This allows the style writer (like myself) to put up to 400 different musical patterns from 1 to 8 beats each and have them play back in musically appropriate instances. It is also possible to write multiple patterns to happen in the same musical instance and assign probability numbers so that some show up often, and some infrequently.

The output is about like a decent band in most cases (depending on the song) but never as good as a very good or great band.

I bought it to practice saxophone with back in the late 1980s. Although I play 7 instruments, sax is my primary and when trying new improvisation ideas out, you don't know how they will sound without a band playing the chords. Band-in-a-Box can cover over 90% of popular, jazz, and country songs well, in any key, and in any tempo.

In the early 1990s PG Music (the creators of BiaB) created an app that allowed end-users like myself to write custom styles for BiaB. I gave it a try, wrote about 20 of them that I though were not like the ones in BiaB and something I'd like to practice with. I gave copies to my friends, and they said they liked them better than the styles that came with BiaB (aren't friends great) so I took out an ad in the now extinct Electronics Musician magazine, and found myself in business.

I've sold styles to musicians in over 100 countries, and to my surprise here in the USA and overseas I've had instances where I've met other musicians and when I tell them my name they say "THE Bob  Norton, the Band-in-a-Box guy?" At first a bit embarrassing, not knowing how to react, but now it makes me feel good.

I use BiaB for practice, and as the app grew in features and quality I also use it often to help write the backing tracks for my duo. If there is an appropriate style I'll start it in BiaB, then export to a DAW where I can add song-specific riffs, and do other things that turn the very good output of BiaB into something excellent. The parts I use I can play myself, but BiaB saves time, especially for comp parts that lurk in the background and fill up a song. If there is no appropriate style in BiaB, I do my backing tracks from scratch, playing the drum part into a MIDI sequencer first, then bass, then add the other comp parts.

The gigging work in Florida has always been seasonal. From around Halloween through Easter there are plenty of gigs, as the population swells with winter residents and tourists getting away from the frozen north. Then it gets very slow in the summer and from mid-August through Mid-October I'm lucky to gig two days a week.

Before I got into the BiaB aftermarket business I spent the summers either "up north" or gigging on Cruise Ships, preferring the Cruise Ships. But I really, really love summers in Florida.

My little aftermarket business grew to the point where it makes enough money for me to enjoy the summers in Florida without having to travel for work. I love to travel, but for a duo to schlep our gear around the country and keep it safe isn't much fun. And the routine of the cruise ships got old after a few years. Every week the same thing again and again and again. Even the menu is the same week after week (If it's Monday, it's ham sandwiches for lunch - can't get one on Tuesday though because they are only on the Monday menu). The gigging is good, but the confinement and routine leaves you wanting more.

So starting around Easter, I start writing new styles. It's time consuming, but it's music and I get to use some of the arranging chops I learned in school, I get to play the music life into a DAW and import the snippets into the BiaB StyleMaker app, and I've learned a lot about how different genres of music work that I haven't had a lot of previous experience in like Salsa, Soca, Reggae, Musette, etc.

This is probably TMI. If you want to see more about Band-in-a-Box, go to pgmusic.com (I don't sell BiaB, just add on products at nortonmusic.com).

Please excuse typos, my keyboard has been skipping letters lately and all of a sudden I have to run with no time to proofread

Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 22, 2018, 10:58:21 PM
Notes: I really enjoy reading of your activities as a "working musician". You have obviously gained a great deal of talent and knowledge of the music scene, and in my mind, you chose the right route by forming a duo and playing selected venues as opposed to trying to rise to "superstar status" and burning out at a young age. Also your Music in a box business sounds like a great past time when your not performing. Sounds like a win-win deal.
In a change of subject, there is a discussion on Parker cases in other sections. I have to say that the case that came with my DF724 is beautiful, fits the guitar like a glove, and is VERY sturdy and as nice as any Fender or Gibson case that I have. My PRS guitar, as expensive as it was, came with just a gig-bag (a nice one, but still a gig bag). I called PRS to order a hard case for the guitar and found out that it is built like a tank, is beautiful, but must weigh 1000 pounds (lol). It is the heaviest case that I have and it is actually a huge overkill in my mind. Cases in my mind should fit well, be well built, but should be fairly light....few of them will ever have to withstand being run over by a truck.
Another question, my DF734 sounds great, but I have been playing it through my small, practice amp and have found that when switching from just the magnetic pups to the piezos, I sense very little tonal difference. I haven't yet explored all adjustment capabilities, but I expected the piezos to give more of an acoustic sound and am surprised by the sound they provide. Can any one comment on this and maybe give me a few hints on really how to evaluate this? The 3 way switch is working properly and the 5 way switch seems right also. I have a large, high powered amp also...should I try it on that amp?  Thanks.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on May 23, 2018, 12:22:47 AM
Another question, my DF734 sounds great, but I have been playing it through my small, practice amp and have found that when switching from just the magnetic pups to the piezos, I sense very little tonal difference. I haven't yet explored all adjustment capabilities, but I expected the piezos to give more of an acoustic sound and am surprised by the sound they provide. Can any one comment on this and maybe give me a few hints on really how to evaluate this? The 3 way switch is working properly and the 5 way switch seems right also. I have a large, high powered amp also...should I try it on that amp?  Thanks.

Hi there, piezo pups work best when running straight into a PA not an amp. If you use your Y cable and run the mags line to the amp as normal, and the other line to the PA or keyboard amp, you will hear a massive difference when you switch between the two types.
I use a Line 6 Firehawk and bypass the amp modelling for the piezo by running the Piezo through the FX return at the end of the signal chain. I can then control my pickup switching with my feet by programming my patches accordingly. No hands!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: ParkerPlayer on May 23, 2018, 02:51:55 PM
I called PRS to order a hard case for the guitar and found out that it is built like a tank, is beautiful, but must weigh 1000 pounds (lol). It is the heaviest case that I have and it is actually a huge overkill in my mind. Cases in my mind should fit well, be well built, but should be fairly light....few of them will ever have to withstand being run over by a truck.

Ha ha.  Yes, I totally agree about the cases.  My PRS Custom 22 came with a hard case which is ridiculously heavy! 
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on May 24, 2018, 08:43:05 AM
<...snip...> I expected the piezos to give more of an acoustic sound and am surprised by the sound they provide. <...>

I too was not overwhelmed by the acoustic sound of the piezos. They sound way to thin for my tastes and have none of the resonance of a flat-top acoustic. I have an Acoustic sim on my Digitech RP355 pedal that sounds much more acoustic.

But there is one thing I really, really like about the piezos. If I blend the piezos with the mag pickups, they add some sparkle and twang to the tone. It's unlike anything straight mags or straight piezos can provide. IMHO this alone is worth the price of admission.

But to be honest, I don't think I've given the piezos their best chance. I've never used the Y cable, but I run from the Parker to the RP355 amp-sim/fx pedal straight to the PA mixer.

Insights and incites by Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: billy on May 24, 2018, 10:32:40 AM
Another question, my DF734 sounds great, but I have been playing it through my small, practice amp and have found that when switching from just the magnetic pups to the piezos, I sense very little tonal difference. I haven't yet explored all adjustment capabilities, but I expected the piezos to give more of an acoustic sound and am surprised by the sound they provide. Can any one comment on this and maybe give me a few hints on really how to evaluate this? The 3 way switch is working properly and the 5 way switch seems right also. I have a large, high powered amp also...should I try it on that amp?  Thanks.

Hi there, piezo pups work best when running straight into a PA not an amp. If you use your Y cable and run the mags line to the amp as normal, and the other line to the PA or keyboard amp, you will hear a massive difference when you switch between the two types.
I use a Line 6 Firehawk and bypass the amp modelling for the piezo by running the Piezo through the FX return at the end of the signal chain. I can then control my pickup switching with my feet by programming my patches accordingly. No hands!

Agree, the piezos sound best through a pa or an amp made for acoustic instruments/keyboards.  There's also some direct boxes that can help improve the piezo sound into the pa.  I also find the piezos are useful when blended into the mags for a little extra brightness on a regular guitar amp.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: jb63 on May 24, 2018, 11:41:53 AM
Have a look/listen to what Pete Townshend does with his Piezo-modded guitars. Its a little of both, but he really gets that "mixed in" sound that Notes is talking about. But when it comes time for acoustic he is ALWAYS just switching to a big boxy acoustic.

Doing Coffee Shop gigs, I was able to get my nitefly V4 to do a good acoustic sound using a preamp and running it through the split cable so that the piezo went straight to one channel of my Roland BA-330. I was NOT able to do this with my Roland JC-120! I was able to EQ it with the onboard knobs of the BA-330 pretty well, but putting a separate EQ unit in between is really what it needs. I used the Rockett Pedals Allan Holdsworth Overdrive for a lot of nice tweaks, and it did some cool acoustic stuff-- made it more convincing, but that wasn't really the EQ pedal I needed.

I use an array of synth patches that are really convincing for that now, but I don't think you have to go down that road.
I initially looked at what Reeves Gabrels was doing with his Nitefly and it was ALWAYS sending the piezo to the mixing board.
Since I rarely get a mixing board, its up to me to find that EQ pedal that works!

I forget who, hopefully they will chime in< recommended this:

https://reverb.com/p/fishman-aura-spectrum-di?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIhI3p5-Se2wIVFcNkCh3AWAHfEAQYAiABEgLDpPD_BwE&hfid=12351941

which looks perfect but I have never tried it. Take your guitar to a big box store and make them plug you in!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on May 24, 2018, 12:20:03 PM

I forget who, hopefully they will chime in< recommended this:

https://reverb.com/p/fishman-aura-spectrum-di?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIhI3p5-Se2wIVFcNkCh3AWAHfEAQYAiABEgLDpPD_BwE&hfid=12351941

which looks perfect but I have never tried it. Take your guitar to a big box store and make them plug you in!

I use that with my Deluxe piezos and I like the result - a much more convincing acoustic sound.

I also sometimes use a blend of piezos mixed with a normal mag/amp configuration to add a bit of 'shimmer'.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: billy on May 24, 2018, 02:10:17 PM
This looks promising but I haven't tried one.

Radial Tonebone PZ-D, Dave Martone demo

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RkqMKMjgDlw
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 24, 2018, 06:48:53 PM
Great responses, but remember that having recently "restarted" my guitar activities, I am a long way behind most of you in technology and terminology. I have a Martin Accoustic with a Fishman electronics package, and I used to play that through a Fender Acoustosonic Amp. It sounded pretty good, but not awesome. I sold that amp and bought a new Boss Katana 100 212 Amp, which includes an accoustic amp model. It works well with the Martin, but I don't know how I would run the Parker piezos through that amp model on the Boss, and then run the magnetic pups through a standard, clean mode on the same ampl. I do not have a "Y" cable, which it sounds like something I need, and it also sounds like I need two amps, one of which should be a PA system or a regular amp with some sort of "effects box" (which I don't know a lot about yet). I have multiple "regular" amps, so if I ran the mags through one amp and ran the "Y" cable with the piezos to another amp through some sort pf effects box, would I get the sound differential...ie: more accoustic sound from the piezos? I'm displaying my naievity, here, but gotta learn someway. The Parker is truly worth learning all of the details on!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on May 25, 2018, 09:37:06 AM
It doesn't have to be complicated.

If you want something approaching an acoustic sound, you use the piezos by themselves. Run them through a 'clean' sound system or amp rather than a 'guitar' amp that typically adds unwanted distortion and color. An extra gadget like the Fishman box mentioned just enhances the acoustic realism a bit.

If, like some of us, you want to sometimes blend a bit of the piezo sound with the mags, you can do that using any normal amp.

In either case you use an ordinary guitar cable.

The only time you need a stereo cable and two different signal chains running simultaneously is if you require special sound setups and/or live switching between the sounds.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on May 25, 2018, 03:33:00 PM
In my duo, I play sax, wind synth, guitar, flute, and sing plus I make my own backing tracks, so there never is a time where I really need straight acoustic. Since I use an fx/amp-sim pedal with a couple of acoustic simulations, that works fine for me. If I didn't, I'd try that Y cable and go direct into the PA, perhaps put some reverb on it.

But I really love blending the piezos with the mags. Although we are not a country band, we had enough requests to learn "Wagon Wheel" so I play fill ins and both solos using the neck pickup in the P-90 mode and crank the piezo knob up about 3/4 and although it sounds neither like a straight mag or acousitc, having elements of both, it really tickles my ears. I sequenced the fiddles for the intro, but they don't get one of the solos, I'm not going to let the machine have that kind of fun ;)

Other songs I'll use the bridge mag on single coil, turn the treble down on the mag a bit, and turn the piezo up about half way, it doesn't sound like a tele, but will fill the same space as one.

It's a fun tool to experiment with.

Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 25, 2018, 11:00:35 PM
Let me see if I understand the workings of my DF 724. When we talk about using a Y cable to "separate" the Piezos and the magnetic pups, does this mean that my guitar is equipped with a "stereo output jack" that will carry the mag pups sound in one half of the Y cable, and the piezo signals completely separately in the other half of the Y cable? That would mean that output jack must have two sets of contacts, one for the piezos and one for the mags. Then, if I use a single output cable (no Y), the out put jack will send both the piezo and mag signals out through the common cable? That capability would be cool and the first time I've ever encountered this. You guys are a big help, so can you help clean this up in my "simple mind"? Thanks.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Big Swifty on May 25, 2018, 11:48:18 PM
Yes, the output can be either stereo - one side mag other side piezo ( don't recall which side is which) or mono with mag/piezo combined.
The fishman pre-amp "auto-senses" the type of plug used (stereo or mono) and sends the appropriate signal.
However apparently this auto sensing feature can be a little flaky at times and is somewhat dependant on what you're plugging your guitar into in order to work correctly.
Never tried it on my DF, but there is info here if you have a search.
Get or make a Y cable and give it a go!

B.S.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 27, 2018, 06:41:41 PM
Boy, this Piezo/Mag stuff is interesting. I just found that Sweetwater sells a "Parker 20 Mag/Piezo Y Cable" that sounds like just what is supposed to be used with my DF 724 guitar......it costs $60!! Was one of these cables supposed to come with the guitar when it was brand new? (The manuals suggest that it should have). I checked the actual output jack on the guitar, and it does indeed have a "stereo output jack" (two contact points) and this Y cable is built to work directly with that jack so as to put the piezo signal through one cable and the mag signal through another. But the manuals suggest that the separate cables are not necessary if you don't need ultimate control of both pickup sets and don't have an acoustic or PA amp. Is buying the Y cable worth the cost and will running the piezo and mag signals through different amps provide significantly more sound control and versatility?
Gosh, when I first started with electric guitars back in the early 60's, there was only a volume and tone control on the guitar, and another volume and tone contol on the amp....that sort of technology has advanced a long way!!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on May 27, 2018, 07:16:59 PM
Boy, this Piezo/Mag stuff is interesting. I just found that Sweetwater sells a "Parker 20 Mag/Piezo Y Cable" that sounds like just what is supposed to be used with my DF 724 guitar......it costs $60!! Was one of these cables supposed to come with the guitar when it was brand new?

Yes. But they are fairly cheaply made. I have three and they have all failed at some point. You can get them made up for you or if you are handy with a soldering iron you can make your own easily enough for less than $60.

Is buying the Y cable worth the cost and will running the piezo and mag signals through different amps provide significantly more sound control and versatility?

Yes absolutely. You don't need it, but IMO it greatly improves the sound variations you can get from the guitar. And as I suggested above, using a Y cable with a modeller (rather than 2 amps) means you can use foot switches to change inputs/patches rather than your hands. It sounds complicated, but it really isn't. For example, you just set Patch 1 (mags) to use the main guitar input, and set Patch 2 (piezo) to use the FX return only. Or, as some have suggested, a blend of the two inputs to get a nice acoustic sound with a little "colour" from the mags.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on May 28, 2018, 12:45:33 AM
Is buying the Y cable worth the cost and will running the piezo and mag signals through different amps provide significantly more sound control and versatility?

I thought I already explained that earlier, but we'll try again. The answer to the second part of your question is yes: running the separate outputs through two different signal chains simultaneously offers more sound control and versatility. However, there's nothing mandatory about it.

Using just a normal guitar cable, you can choose output from mags alone to run through a 'guitar' chain, or piezo alone to run through a different 'acoustic' chain, or a mag/piezo blend to run through something else. Maybe your own standard signal chain includes the ability to switch from a 'guitar' amplification patch to a completely different 'piezo' amplification patch that you would control with your foot while you change pickup outputs with your hand. There are too many possibilities to enumerate. 

The answer to the first part of the question (is buying the stereo cable worth the cost?) is something you answer for yourself depending on what gear you have and what you want to do.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 29, 2018, 05:34:00 PM
Well, I tried using the "acoustic amp model" on my Boss amp, and played just the piezos through it by themselves. There was very little "true" acoustic sounds produced....it sounded ok, but less than expected. I then went to a "clean" model on the amp with all effects shut off, and played the mags through that. Sounded great! So then I also turned on the piezos with the mags, and I was really surprised at how much "brightness" and clarity was added to the sound. Is this what you've been saying you do, Notes? I can see why....the piezos really seem more useful in augmenting the mags sound than using them alone. (at least in my limited ability to manage and appreciate the tones of a guitar)! You guys have a lot of knowledge on these guitars, and I appreciate the sharing.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on May 29, 2018, 06:39:44 PM
Well, I tried using the "acoustic amp model" on my Boss amp, and played just the piezos through it by themselves. There was very little "true" acoustic sounds produced....it sounded ok, but less than expected.

Depending on what Boss amp you're talking about, that's probably an inappropriate thing to do. With my Boss amps, the 'Acoustic' model is described along these lines:

ACOUSTIC
By combining acoustic guitar simulation with COSM amplifier modeling technology, this original amplifier model gives you a dynamic acoustic guitar sound using a standard electric guitar.


It takes magnetic output and supposedly (though unsuccessfully) makes it sound like an acoustic guitar. That's quite the wrong approach for amplifying piezo output. What you want is basically clean and uncolored amplification, although you can augment the sound from there.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 29, 2018, 08:20:00 PM
It's a Boss Katana 100 212 amp....quite a monster. But you are right that its acoustic model is not really that good. So, I have just had a friend tell me that he is selling his one of his Fishman acoustic amps (very nice amp) so I bought it just to see what I could extract from my Parker's piezos. That may be a bit of overkill just to test sound capabilities of a guitar, but I do have a Martin Acoustic Electric guitar that can use the amp as well, so it is not a frivolous decision. I get the amp tomorrow and will run the sound capability tests again. I assume that the acoustic amp is the proper amp for this purpose as it is also a PA amp and has a lot of capability.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on May 29, 2018, 08:45:34 PM
As Syber says, you want an uncoloured amp for your piezo to get the best acoustic sound. In practice this means a PA system, Full Range Flat Response speakers, or keyboard amp. If your Martin Acoustic amp is FRFR, then it will be fine. If it is an acoustic emulator, it won't sound right.

My last tip for the piezo is to make sure the pre-amp gain on the guitar's power-chip is turned up so the piezo is about 120% of the mag volume. IMO this helps the acoustic sound punch through more and if it's too loud you can always roll off the piezo volume without degrading the sound, which obviously you can't do successfully with magnetic pups.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on May 30, 2018, 12:37:35 AM
... I have just had a friend tell me that he is selling his one of his Fishman acoustic amps (very nice amp) so I bought it just to see what I could extract from my Parker's piezos.

I know about those. Should sound great with the piezos.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: jb63 on May 30, 2018, 02:02:42 PM

My last tip for the piezo is to make sure the pre-amp gain on the guitar's power-chip is turned up so the piezo is about 120% of the mag volume. IMO this helps the acoustic sound punch through more and if it's too loud you can always roll off the piezo volume without degrading the sound, which obviously you can't do successfully with magnetic pups.

THIS!
Definitely THIS!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Mr303 on May 30, 2018, 03:43:44 PM

My last tip for the piezo is to make sure the pre-amp gain on the guitar's power-chip is turned up so the piezo is about 120% of the mag volume. IMO this helps the acoustic sound punch through more and if it's too loud you can always roll off the piezo volume without degrading the sound, which obviously you can't do successfully with magnetic pups.

THIS!
Definitely THIS!

This does sound like sound advice (pun intended !!!)
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 30, 2018, 03:57:35 PM
OK, that all sounds good. I got my "new" Fishman Loudbox acoustic guitar amp with an included PA system in it today, and hooked the Parker up to it with the piezos only. Absolutely amazing sound...very clear, bright, and very close to actual acoustic sound! So, I guess I have it figured out. One problem came up though. While still hooked to the acoustic amp and with the magnetic pups completely shut off, I switched the selector switch to the mag position and got some scratchy noise during the switch movement, and then some "bleed-through" of the piezos while the switch was in the mags only position. Not cool. Do I have a bad switch, or could it just need cleaning from lack of use for a couple of years? More mystery.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: billy on May 30, 2018, 04:41:13 PM
Awesome, sounds like you have a great setup.

FYI One of the biggest complaints of the USM guitars is the switches.  They modified off the shelf switches based on size constraints, cost, and what was readily available- not the best solution.  Try a search here and see what you come up with.

Also wanted to add that you could try a TRS cable into a Y box/cable for splitting to two amps.  The longer Y cables are a bit crazy.

Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on May 30, 2018, 06:03:27 PM
... I switched the selector switch to the mag position and got some scratchy noise during the switch movement, and then some "bleed-through" of the piezos while the switch was in the mags only position. Not cool. Do I have a bad switch, or could it just need cleaning from lack of use for a couple of years? More mystery.

Yep. I've had to fix, modify or replace every switch on my 2013 and 2015 Parkers. Thankfully it's an easy job, but one day I'll swap them all for something more robust.

To fix the bleed, you need to remove the switch and bend the contact tabs on either side of centre back to their intended position. Fiddly, but it works.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 30, 2018, 06:40:58 PM
Man, what is it with these switches. I've had more trouble with switches than any other component on any of my guitars, including several major brand names in the guitar business. I'll open up the back plate on the Parker and see if I can "bend the contacts" like suggested. If that doesn't work, is there any switch out there that is a decent replacement?
By the way, an old friend and long time Fender affectionado stopped by today and I let him play the Parker. I thought I was going to have to club him over the head to get him to give it back to me!! If I ever sell, he says he wants first chance....do all you Parker owners have experiences like that?
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: ParkerPlayer on May 30, 2018, 07:19:44 PM
By the way, an old friend and long time Fender affectionado stopped by today and I let him play the Parker. I thought I was going to have to club him over the head to get him to give it back to me!! If I ever sell, he says he wants first chance....do all you Parker owners have experiences like that?

That's a great story, and I've heard many similar stories of guitarist discovering Parkers and being pleasantly surprised at how fun they are to play.  A friend of mine tried my '96 Classic and was not impressed at all, then I let him try my '08 hard tail Artist and he was over the moon about it.  Now he's on the hunt for one of those.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 31, 2018, 03:13:18 PM
OK, I've got the back cover plate off and am looking at the back of the 3-position, pick-up selector (piezo/mag) switch. I have not removed the switch from the guitar  yet but see some connections on the back that look fine and don't look like they need bending or adjustment. Do I need to remove the switch completely to get at some other connector lugs that may be bent? Boy, that guitar is electrically "busy" inside that "electronics bay". I sure hope my problem is just in this switch....I'm not that good at fixing electrical problems!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on May 31, 2018, 07:27:28 PM
It's not the lugs that connect to the wires that need fixing, it is the metal tabs that make up the mechanical part of the switch. You won't see them unless you remove the switch as they are facing towards the top of the guitar.

You don't need to unsolder anything to do this procedure:

When you pull the switch out, you will see there are four metal tabs that are "sandwiched" together with two small screws. One on the left and right, two in the middle. These are the switch contacts. If you move the switch from position to position you will see each of the left/right tabs make contact with the middle as the bottom of the switch (a small plastic piece) swings from side to side. The bleed happens when one of the tabs doesn't fully break contact with the central position when it is supposed to be off. You should be able to see which side is the problem.
To fix it, first visually identify which side is bleeding. Then remove the two screws holding the assembly together and then bend the offending metal tab a little further away from the central position. Reassemble, test it manually before you secure it back into the guitar. It's a fairly simple fix, but works well.

Or, you could just buy some new switches for about $12 each!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 31, 2018, 08:05:49 PM
Jaime: Thanks for that detailed procedure. I will follow your steps closely because I am a real klutz when doing these delicate things. But it should be something I can do. If I DO screw it up (which is entirely possible) is there an identical or similar switch I can find to replace the original? I really appreciate the help and the detailed response!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on May 31, 2018, 08:12:17 PM
These are your switches (or very similar):
https://www.stewmac.com/Pickups_and_Electronics/Components_and_Parts/Switches/Metric_Toggle_Switch.html?utm_source=google&utm_medium=shopping&utm_campaign=2018-06-gp&pref_currency=F&shipcalc=AUS&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI7qu-jqOx2wIV1jUrCh3Zbw5cEAQYCiABEgK8o_D_BwE

In the pic you can see the two screws holding the sandwich assembly together. The outer metal contact tabs are those hoop-shapes. Once you have it your hand it will be obvious.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: jb63 on May 31, 2018, 09:59:23 PM
We should take pictures and pin this into the FAQ!
Thanks, Jamie for all the info!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on May 31, 2018, 10:11:50 PM
Jaime: OK, I got the switch out of the guitar (very easy to do) and have examined the contact tabs that you described. It definitely appears that one contact tab is staying to close to the center contact when it should be cleanly away. This actually looks like something I can do, but I had to quit on it tonight because of other time demands. I'll finish it up tomorrow.
By the way, the Stew Mac switch that you showed is a "metric" switch (I assume this just applies to the screw threads used)....is that what was originally used on the Parker guitar? Thanks again for your great help on this matter!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on May 31, 2018, 11:41:18 PM
By the way, the Stew Mac switch that you showed is a "metric" switch (I assume this just applies to the screw threads used)....

Yes i that is referring to the thread (M12). You can see the spec further down the page which also has imperial measurements just to confuse everybody. It will come with its own M12 nut so it will be fine.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 01, 2018, 05:40:50 PM
Well, now I'm stumped. I checked the switch over very carefully under a magnifying lens and saw that the "gaps" at the contacts were approximately equal, and large enough to easily pass a piece of paper through when the switch was in the center position. The contacts appear to be "making and breaking" as they should and my multimeter says that everything is working right. Could something else be causing the tone bleed, or is there something in the switch that I cannot see that could be not working right? I thought I had it figured out, but I really don't think I could adjust it any better. Is it new switch time?
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 01, 2018, 10:01:32 PM
Well, I guess this was a "false alarm". After I looked this switch over very carefully, I then took it all apart to look closely at the pieces. Every thing looked good, except a fairly sizeable piece of grit or some other matter fell out of the assembly when I took it apart. I didn't think much about it, so I did some very minor cleaning work and put it all back together, installed the switch back into the guitar, buttoned up the back plate and went to the amps to try it out. Everything works perfectly! I have no idea what the problem was, but suspect that grit was somehow interfering with the switch contact movement. Anyway, for now, all is good except that I got the switch installed at a rotational location that makes the toggle a little off. I'll live with it! Thanks again for all the information....I may have just lucked out, but I wouldn't even have tried without your suggestions.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on June 02, 2018, 02:02:25 AM
Good news. Well done for persisting.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 02, 2018, 06:21:53 PM
A couple of observations on my recent experiences with this Parker guitar: Once the bugs were worked out, I have found that I really like the sound of the piezos coming through the Fishman amp all by themselves, without the mags on. Personal taste, of course, but that sound is incredible! And one thing that surprised me for this "high end" guitar was the  "messy" wiring that I found inside the electronics bay. There were wires that were just hooked up with little attention to routing that would have improved appearance and prevented potential damage to the wires by adjacent hard components. Even most of the solder joints were quite amateur in appearance. Don't get me wrong, everything seems to work OK, but I would have expected to see actual wiring harnesses, wire ties/bundles used and neatly routed in this axe. I guess they used the "if not visible, it's not necessary to perfect it" approach. Maybe I have too high of expectations, and this minor observation does not detract from my appreciation of the guitar at all! Besides, I did my best to "clean up" the wiring in the bay, and now it looks a lot better.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 04, 2018, 01:20:40 AM
By the way, is my DF 724 radial also called a Maxx Fly? I've had several folks ask me that!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on June 04, 2018, 01:44:15 PM
By the way, is my DF 724 radial also called a Maxx Fly? I've had several folks ask me that!

Yes. You can see both names in the catalogs from 2012 and later.

As usual with Parker, the backstory is interesting.

The name 'DragonFly' (or Dragon Fly) was introduced in this forum in late 2008 to refer to the instrument that would debut in 2009 and become the precursor of all DF models. See this post from a Parker employee:

http://forums.parkerguitars.com/index.php/topic,8745.html

It seems that the name might have been taken from a suggestion about a month earlier by a forum member:

http://forums.parkerguitars.com/index.php/topic,8558.msg80024.html#msg80024

Or possibly going back even 18 months earlier:

http://forums.parkerguitars.com/index.php/topic,2418.msg42936.html#msg42936

In March 2009, the VP of Manufacturing started this thread confirming the name:

http://forums.parkerguitars.com/index.php/topic,9118.0.html

The model prefix for that line was accordingly designated as 'DF'.

However, not long afterwards the company discovered that Fernandes Guitars already owned the rights to the DragonFly name. The name was hastily changed to MaxxFly (yuck!), but the model prefix was left unchanged.

The DragonFly name never appeared in Parker catalogs (to my knowledge), though it does appear in the PDF of the 2009 price list. Apparently some instruments left the factory with a DragonFly logo emblazoned on the headstock:

http://forums.parkerguitars.com/index.php/topic,12191.html

So, there are some 'true' Parker DragonFlys out there ... but by the time yours was made, that name had faded into history and only MaxxFly remained.

(BTW, the original Spanish Fly and Fly Concert models without mag pickups also underwent a name change. They were later renamed Nylon Fly and Bronze Fly around the time 'refining' of the Fly series occurred.)
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 04, 2018, 02:40:48 PM
Thank you Sybersytizen for the incredible explanation of how the Maxx Fly "brand" came to be. These Parker guitars are not only exceptional instruments, but have back stories and a knowledgeable "fan base" that is not only extremely interesting, but clearly show the devotion to the brand of the users and affectionados of the instruments. I don't think I've ever heard as much detail about Fender or Gibson as you folks have assembled here. And I don't care if my guitar is actually a Maxx Fly.....the model name doesn't bother me at all!   
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: vjmanzo on June 04, 2018, 06:51:40 PM
Fantastic! The Maxxfly history with citations!!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 04, 2018, 10:32:11 PM
I really don't mean to beat this to death, but I got a "Y" cable for the DF 724 today and hooked it up with the piezos to the acoustic (Fishman) amp and the mags to my small, Roland Cube amp. What an incredible system....this guitar is Really cool! I can play solo piezos, solo mags, or both together which allows tremendous sound control. I'm sure you folks here know all about this, but I've never had a guitar with this capability and other premium features before. I guess I've become a Parker convert!!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: jester700 on June 05, 2018, 01:18:43 PM
Thanks for the links, Syber! I own a real stamped "Dragonfly" DF724 in Blueburst flame. Love this guitar!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on June 06, 2018, 09:21:02 AM
I had a real Dragonfly but the body cracked. I sent it to Parker, they fixed it. After the warranty expired it cracked again. The Parker rep said this shouldn't happen, and the wood the body was made out of was the fault. So they replaced the guitar with a new one - no charge, no shipping. But it's a MaxxFly (yuck on the name but still a great guitar).

I liked the customer service so well, but I was missing P90 pickups, so I had Parker make a custom job for me.

Now I'm doubly happy.

Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 06, 2018, 05:10:25 PM
What's wrong with the "Maxx Fly" name? I know you folks have been around these guitars for a long time and may have an adversion to the use of this name for some reason? When I first heard it I thought it was named like a "super hero" (like a Marvel comic book hero) but there must be more to it than that. And I was going to nickname this guitar Maxx......!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on June 06, 2018, 06:35:24 PM
What's wrong with the "Maxx Fly" name? When I first heard it I thought it was named like a "super hero" (like a Marvel comic book hero) ...

Right there is a pretty good explanation of why some of us don't like it. Comic book superhero connotations are not exactly on the positive side of the equation. (Actually, I didn't like DragonFly all that much either. I would prefer something more ... I dunno ... distinguished.)

In the end it really doesn't matter. The world will get used to the name. It worked for Stratocaster.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on June 07, 2018, 01:54:29 PM
What's wrong with the "Maxx Fly" name? I know you folks have been around these guitars for a long time and may have an adversion to the use of this name for some reason? When I first heard it I thought it was named like a "super hero" (like a Marvel comic book hero) but there must be more to it than that. And I was going to nickname this guitar Maxx......!
Perhaps because I liked Dragonfly.

Perhaps because I just like the sound of Maxx and Fly together.

Maxifly would have sounded better to me.

But I really love the guitars, so they could have called them almost anything.

Actually, DF is fine.

Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on June 07, 2018, 06:34:27 PM
I have the 7 string MaxxFly, but I think of it as a "Parker".

Maxxfly sounds dumb and really cheap and I'm really glad it's not printed anywhere on the guitar.

I also have a new Nitefly, which is a much better name, though Syber has other thoughts about that!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on June 07, 2018, 07:33:11 PM
I also have a new Nitefly, which is a much better name, though Syber has other thoughts about that!

Just to clarify for other readers ... the NiteFly name was fine for the original series that was created years ago. However, (IMO) the company should have come up with a different name for the very different series that was introduced more recently.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 08, 2018, 12:55:14 AM
As some one who didn't know Parker guitars existed up until about a month ago, I was quite surprised to find out that the original series of guitars were called "Flys" at all, It seemed like a strange name for a guitar, but then I found out about Nite Flys, Dragon Flys, Maxx Flys and was even more "confused" by the choice of names. To me, my guitar is a DF 724 and that's fine with me. But I fully understand the positions on the naming of the guitars from year one that many of you remember....I would probably be a little upset by the random proliferation of names that were applied as the guitars went through the many changes that it has apparently seen.
That said, my DF 724 is rapidly becoming my "go to" guitar because of its versatility, ease of playing, and features that are just plain cool. I have been experimenting with stereo sounds from the guitar with the piezos going through the acoustic amp and the mags going through a regular amp. With the piezos set with a little chorus effect, and the mags set on the bridge humbucker and some reverb, flanger, and chorus set for those, each sounds great alone but when combined by the mid position of the selector switch, the sound blends into an amazing, stereo melodious treat for the ears! I'm sure that I have just scratched the surface on the possibilities of this set up, but one thing is for certain.....this is a GREAT guitar! Now if I could just re-develop my playing skills with the capabilities of the guitar, things would be wonderful. But I am certainly working on the skill part!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Big Swifty on June 08, 2018, 05:28:06 AM

Maxifly would have sounded better to me.

Notes

 :o

B.S.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on June 08, 2018, 10:11:36 AM
As some one who didn't know Parker guitars existed up until about a month ago, I was quite surprised to find out that the original series of guitars were called "Flys" at all, It seemed like a strange name for a guitar, <...snip...>

I believe it is because they are light in weight (but not lighweight in quality).

My DF522NN is my go-to gigging guitar. The P-Rails can sound like P90, Rail, Series Humbucker and Parallel Humbucker, and blending the piezo in gives me more sounds. It's like a Swiss Army Knife Guitar.

And the rest of the guitar makes it a joy to play, well balanced, comfortably contoured, great tuning stability, master volume placed where I can get at it quickly, great upper fret access, and a neck scale/radius that is just right for me.

Mine doesn't say MaxxFly on it, just Parker, and that's what I call it.

Big Swifty, Maxifly just rolls out of the mouth easier than Maxxfly, and eliminates the double xx which just looks over-the-top to me. But I don't really love that name either.

Naming it after some kind of fly is cute, my wife's Parker is a Hornet, I actually liked Dragonfly, TseTse Fly is no good because they bite, same for mosquitoes and sand flies (no-see-ums), but to tell the truth, as much as I am having fun with the name thing, DF is fine. It identifies the guitar and has no personality. Gibson SGs are like that.

It's too bad the general guitar playing market didn't discover Parkers. I guess Gibson/Fender and their offshoot brands had too much publicity, too many famous endorsements, and guitarists weren't curious enough to try these great guitars.

I think they were under-promoted. But then, it's difficult to break into a mature market that is already saturated.

Anyway, I'm glad I got two USA models before they went belly-up.

Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 08, 2018, 12:45:52 PM
In a humorous vein, I wonder why they didn't consider "Super Fly". Wasn't there a movie made with that name?
And I fully agree with Notes.....I'm feel very fortunate to have literally "stumbled" onto this USA made DF 724! It's really in a class by itself. It's too bad that they aren't made anymore.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: billy on June 08, 2018, 02:16:42 PM
When Parker launched, guitars weighed a lot as a rule. The fly moniker really helped convey the much lighter weight, and works with the unique body shape.

The dragonfly fits in pretty nicely there yet stands slightly apart. Same for the hornet single cuts.

Maxx fly falls flat in that regard and frankly doesn’t even mean anything. It sounds like a golf ball.  Or a condom. 

Pretty tone deaf marketing imho.  It implies that what came before is “less than” without specifying what’s better. Not at all what I’d call creative or cohesive branding.

I’d still play them but glad I have a dragonfly all the same.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: jb63 on June 08, 2018, 03:41:44 PM
I'm sure Tsetse Fly and Deerfly were right out!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 08, 2018, 03:52:09 PM
If I'm reading the Parker catalogues correctly, my 2011 model guitar was actually officially called a DF Radial Neck series. It does not mention the Maxx Fly moniker until the 2012 catalog came out. The 2012 seems to be identical to the 2010/2011 models but carried the Maxx Fly nomenclature in the catalogue. I wonder why they made the name change? Anyway, there is no mention of model anywhere on my guitar, only the Parker name at the tip of the tuning head.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: billy on June 08, 2018, 04:39:21 PM
I'm sure Tsetse Fly and Deerfly were right out!

Lol I think those came up at the time
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on June 08, 2018, 06:52:39 PM
If I'm reading the Parker catalogues correctly, my 2011 model guitar was actually officially called a DF Radial Neck series. It does not mention the Maxx Fly moniker until the 2012 catalog came out. The 2012 seems to be identical to the 2010/2011 models but carried the Maxx Fly nomenclature in the catalogue. I wonder why they made the name change?

The DragonFly name had already been scrapped by 2010 and the MaxxFly name was already being used by Parker internally, on this forum, and (I think) on the website. The Radial Neck series was a general term for several models.

The 2010 catalog carries only the standard 'DF-whatever' model numbers because there was no time (or no inclination) to include the MaxxFly name in that year's catalog. It was of course included in the later catalogs.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on June 09, 2018, 02:11:43 PM
<...snip...>
Maxx fly falls flat in that regard and frankly doesn’t even mean anything. It sounds like a golf ball.  <...>
+1 on the Golf Ball reference.

Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: syncopa on June 09, 2018, 08:29:43 PM
The name Dragonfly was scrapped due to these...


https://www.google.com/search?q=fernandes+dragonfly&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjPoM_N-MfbAhUvqlkKHVbkDNwQ_AUICygC&biw=1422&bih=692
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 10, 2018, 12:34:20 AM
Gee, Syncopa, that looks like about 1/2 of my guitar collection! I had no idea I was dooming the Dragonfly (LOL)!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 12, 2018, 05:56:46 PM
New question for you pros: I played my DF 724 (Maxx Fly?) last night with a shoulder strap for the first time since I bought the guitar. Hooking the strap to the upper horn seemed like I was hooking it to a very weak (maybe fragile) part of the guitar. This is probably due to my familiarity with Strats and the very different, light weight approach to the structure that Parker took on their whole guitar. Anyway, that upper horn looks great but seems thin, and very structurally "minimal" for use as the strap attach point. Is the horn fragile and something to treat lightly when handling/using the guitar? It is the most "minimal" upper horn that I have seen, but I have to assume that Parker checked this out and used strong wood together with the light weight of the guitar to assure structural integrity?
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: JamieCrain on June 12, 2018, 06:59:02 PM
Provided you aren’t swinging it around your head by the horn, I’m sure it will be fine. I have both shapes (Fly and Maxxfly) and the Fly horn is even thinner at some points.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Mr303 on June 13, 2018, 04:26:37 PM
Both my Fly’s have strap buttons on the back of the horn near the top from the factory, I think since it came that way it’s ok.  So do the 105 and 70, I just looked, like Jamie says no acrobatics and it should be good.
The horn is a good handle too since they are so light weight and with the CF being stronger than steel it’s fairly rugged by design.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: sybersitizen on June 13, 2018, 05:00:42 PM
The horn is a good handle too since they are so light weight and with the CF being stronger than steel it’s fairly rugged by design.

The OP's DF724 has no carbon anywhere. I suspect it would still take some good effort to break it.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 13, 2018, 11:24:42 PM
Gosh, I really didn't mean to start such a long thread, But I have sure learned a lot about my Parker since starting it. Funny story: I live in a relatively small town with a relatively small music store. The owner of the store and I are pretty good friends and he has been begging me to bring the DR into the store so he could play if. Well, we hooked the piezos up to a Large PA amp and the mags to a Fender Twin Reverb amp. Talk about overkill, but it sounded incredible. His only exposure to a Parker was some time ago with one of the early Fly Models with the crooked upper horn, and that was a short experience using only a regular guitar amp. He is an excellent player and really made that DF 724 sing! He liked it so much that he would like to get some in his store to sell.....I told him that I didn't think the guitars were still in production, especially in the USA. Is someone building guitars like the DF's in Asia, and calling them the PDF series? I really didn't know where to direct him to find out about availability. Does anyone know the answer to this? One thing for sure is that he would have liked to keep my guitar long term....that seems to be the general reaction from folks who play this thing!!   
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Mr303 on June 14, 2018, 06:01:44 AM
He liked it so much that he would like to get some in his store to sell.....I told him that I didn't think the guitars were still in production, especially in the USA. Is someone building guitars like the DF's in Asia, and calling them the PDF series? I really didn't know where to direct him to find out about availability. Does anyone know the answer to this? One thing for sure is that he would have liked to keep my guitar long term....that seems to be the general reaction from folks who play this thing!!   

No new guitars are being made that’s why forum members tend to hoarde the guitars they have.
Even the Indonesian models are very good.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 14, 2018, 08:55:36 PM
Is there any plans to restart the Parker line or for another company to come in and manufacture a guitar like the original Parkers? It would seem that would be attractive to some "makers", even if they had to go to low cost labor cost areas. These guitars are still a technology and playability leader!!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: jester700 on June 15, 2018, 03:28:27 PM
No. For a few years they said new stuff would be coming, but nothing showed. Now there's no US factory and all the parts inventory has been sold off. Someone COULD buy the brand and retool, but that's a huge startup cost, and with a brand that's lost any momentum. If they weren't successful then, I doubt anyone would risk it now.

Someone COULD buy the brand and make some guitars under contract to their specs, but it would likely use off-the-shelf parts. That could actually work, with a Gotoh or Wilkie trem or something. It could be equal to an import Parker or even a US bolt on, but it wouldn't be a high end thing.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Mr303 on June 15, 2018, 04:04:08 PM
Hold your friends close, hold your Parker closer.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 15, 2018, 06:13:45 PM
Well, I certainly didn't realize it at the time, but I guess I was incredibly lucky to find and buy my essentially brand-new 2011 DF 724 a couple of months ago, especially from a guy that I knew and that he had this guitar. When he first showed it to me and bragged it up, I just sort of shrugged it off as I had never heard of it and just wasn't interested. I don't know what changed my mind, but I did decide to buy it and have become incredibly amazed by it and have learned more about just how unique and capable it is. Both the guitar and case could not be called anything but in brand new condition. I polished it up when I got it and was amazed by the beauty of the thing. I guess that's why I am so surprised at the "demise" of these Parker guitars....I own a lot of "mainstream" guitars, and this Parker is certainly in, if not above, the desirability of any of them. I guess this has definitely become a long term keeper and one to be carefully handled and cared for.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on June 15, 2018, 06:32:33 PM
I'm caring for it, and hoping my two Parkers last the rest of my life.

There is nothing else remotely like them.

Bob
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 17, 2018, 09:09:15 PM
Boy, maybe I had better "mothball" this thing and keep it "brand new". If they aren't going to ever make any more of them and parts are already scarce, it only follows that there will be a dwindling number of operational guitars out there as well as a declining number of folks qualified to do any maintenance on them. Should I be worried or will they become sought after collector items? What is the owner community theory on this?
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Mr303 on June 18, 2018, 07:37:31 AM
I vote for play the guitar since that’s what it’s made for.
Closet guitars are a waste of equipment and money and in my opinion are unlikely to become a true investment grade item.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: jb63 on June 18, 2018, 09:40:56 AM
If you want to make it an “investment” guitar, it probably runs a risk of depreciation more than anything else. Parkers of any model jump around in price like the Dow fluctuates. No real rhyme or reason and suddenly a particular model sells for 5 times what you would expect or a fancy pre-refined artist model sells on the cheap.

My advice, which is pretty solid thinking, though YMMV, is have a carbon-wrapped on and AND light bolt-on neck one and keep them both in your heavy use rotation. If that’s not enough, keep your eye out for a third to keep in rotation. Always try to buy the color you like, because that’s the thing that kept me buying another when it was impractical. There are really only about 5 different stock setups between the models they manufactured over the years and I think they still have the catalogs through the years archived on the Parker site for you to check out the changes. (The original nitefly, for instance, is heavy, but well worth a try with its neck shape and ease of modification. Lots of opinions on the nitefly around here.)

Basically, because they are guitars, I’d assume there will always be some of them to affordablly aqure in your lifetime.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 18, 2018, 12:48:39 PM
Good points. I will certainly keep using and enjoying it, but will take extra care to keep it looking and performing great. I don't "thrash" any of my guitars and always keep them cleaned after use and stored in their case. My only worry is parts if the need ever arises. Maybe it won't need anything if I'm lucky.
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on June 18, 2018, 01:26:27 PM
I don't see it becoming a collectors item.

Early models of popular brands, better than average models of popular brands, and sometimes the flops of popular brands are most likely to become collectors items.

Parkers are great playing guitars. The are comfortable to hold, well balanced, and comfortable to play. IMHO a good playing instrument needs to be played. That's its purpose in 'life'.

Tune it, caress it, and play it. Enjoy the connection between your fingers the strings and body, and your ears. That will pay you more than the cash will when you sell it.
 
I owned a Selmer Mark VI saxophone. This is now the most sought after sax in the used market. The "holy grail" of saxophones. I traded it for a Mark VII which wasn't as good, traded that for an H.Couf which was actually much better, I wore out the Couf got a gold plated Grassi, which wasn't as good as the VI or the Couf but as good as the VII, and now play a small botique sax from a company out of Texas that had them made in Taiwan.  I'd say that the intonation is definitely better than the VI ever hoped to be, the tone is as good, but different (a little bolder but not as good as the Couf), and the ergonomics are as good as the VI with the exception of the more modern left pinky key cluster which is better.

Am I sorry I sold the VI? Not at all. I paid $600 for it new, and now they go for $6,000 in average condition, but I made a lot more than that gigging with it, and when I sold it, it wasn't in average condition any more. Gigging every night wears out the mechanical parts of a sax, and one-nighters are notoriously hard on all music gear. And besides, most things that you could buy in 1960 cost ten times that much for an equivalent today, so in terms of buying power, the sax today would be worth what I paid for it.

Theoretically my Parker guitars should last longer than my sax. Wood should last, frets can be replaced, as can pickups and tuners. The whammy mechanism is great, but if worse comes to worse something else can be adapted.

I've already made more gigging than the Parker cost new. Yes, it's a tool to make my living with, but it is a very enjoyable tool to use, so why not use it?

Insights and incites by Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on June 19, 2018, 05:49:19 PM
Y'all have probably noticed that I am an information "sponge" when I acquire a new guitar that is something that I know nothing about. That has been the case with my "new" Parker, and I must say that those of you that have responded to my questions and comments have been extremely helpful! Not only have I learned what a great guitar it really is, but also a lot about its history, different problems, how to fix little problems, how people use their Parkers, a lot about the Parker company, and on and on. Great forum, and I feel like I am now totally familiar with my Parker and will know where to go if I can think of other questions to ask (lol). Thanks!!
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: TheGrail on July 12, 2018, 04:21:53 PM
I'll chime in with my two cents .. I fell in love with the Fly the very first time I saw it at the NAMM show in 1994.  I was "in the business" and was able to get a very early black deluxe when they started making the whammy versions in volume (original run was stop tailpiece only).  I played the guitar a few times and then put it into a case thinking that it would become my "58 Les Paul, never played" ridiculous collector item in 20 years. 

Over the years, I got several others and the Fly has been my main guitar since then, current inventory is 5, including "Blackie".   I have come to realize that the original year Fly is not going to be collectible as I had hoped because of three factors: (1) the Fly was too different from a Les Paul or Strat and the average Joe guitar player never even considered it. (2) Some of the 'advanced' tech in the Fly has not proven to stand up to time. Specifically the ribbon cables in the electronics box become very brittle with age and cannot be replaced, hard wiring is the only way to fix it when they break. Also the glued on frets have been known to fail (I've never had that happen on any of my guitars, but you can see plenty of threads about it here.   And (3) the fact that the brand lost its visionaries when Ken and Larry exited after the Korg sale meant that the brand would get diluted - exactly what happened with the cheap bolt on flies, the "telecaster looking" fly, etc. The writing was on the wall when Korg sold out.

So my strategy is to love my collection, hold on to them, play them.  They are the best guitars I've found in my 45 years of playing. 
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: Notes_Norton on July 12, 2018, 06:52:01 PM
My duo partner bought a PM10, her first instrument is voice, second is synth, so she didn't want an expensive guitar. I was impressed with the build. The glued on neck fits so well that you have to take it into sunlight to see the seam, the wood grain almost matches. Opening the cover in the back the wiring was done neatly.

Guitar is my seventh instrument and I had been playing a Faux-LP (LTD) that weighed 8 pounds. I took to lead quickly as it is my seventh instrument, I played bass for a while, and I already knew barre chords. The interval between the G & B string did cause me to blunder more than a few times though. Since I wanted a light weight guitar for switching between sax, flute, wind synth and guitar on stage I went for the bolt-on DF. Again I was impressed. It is so comfortable and balanced it seems like I'm wearing it instead of playing it, it stays in tune well, and sounds good.

I had a problem, the wood cracked on the body after the guarantee expired. Parker glued it at no charge. A couple of years later it cracked again, Parker replaced it with a brand new one at no charge. Great customer service.

I loved the guitar but missed the P90 sound of my faux-LP and since I got such great customer service with Parker, I had them make a custom job for me. It took 7 months but it was worth it. Now I own two DF Parkers.

It's too bad other guitarists didn't recognize the advantages of Parker guitars, and thus it's too bad they went under.

I doubt if either of these will be collectors items, but I'm gigging with them and enjoying them. That's what counts to me. I'll probably wear one out if it's possible.

I do one-nighters which are notoriously hard on gear, and switching instruments makes it go off and on the stand all night. The light weight saves my arm, but sometimes when a switch needs to be quick, the guitar can get bumped a bit.

But I love playing it, I love how it sounds, and it puts food on the table.

Life is good.

Notes
Title: Re: New Parker Owner
Post by: axejock on July 17, 2018, 05:54:29 PM
As I get more comfortable with my DF724, I still marvel at it, particularly its light weight and its tonal capabilities. For some reason, I find myself being very "careful" with it, probably because it is so light and electronically unique. I guess it's because all of my other guitars feel like lead weights compared to this one (Gibsons, Fenders, PRS, even a Gretsch) that I think of it as being  too delicate to be handled without extreme care. I guess that means I really like it and that keeping it like new will always be a priority.
 Who'd of thunk it?