I have to say I am very happy with it, I was happy with the sound out of the box, so I guess I couldn't imagine it improving with time, but it has mellowed and the highs are somehow fatter already.
I have fitted pickups, however my main reason for wanting a good pure acoustic to start from was that about six months ago I was asked to play a set for a radio station.....I gig pretty much 300 days a year, almost always solo or with a fiddle player, and have different sets, from original stuff that I write, to cover sets for pubs and also some trad stuff and instrumental background music for restraunts.
I earn 80% of my families (4 kids and my wife) income from music.
As such my guitars were all set up for a big live sound, plugged in, with up to three pickup sources, big heavy sunrise magnetics, stiff guitars that resist feedback, and undersaddle transducers too, that affect the saddle contact to the bridge.
Well, I turned up to this radio station and there was no chance to amplify, so I did the set unplugged.....listening back on I-player I realised that my guitar tone was utterly terrible, I had used a guitar which sounded killer plugged in and eq'd, but I hardly ever played unplugged except at home.
My search for a great acoustic led me to the Avalon site, as I had heard a few and someone locally had one that I always loved the sound of unplugged(his is a Gold series, I know now).
After swapping some emails with a very helpful and patient JB, I managed to score my L32, which I knew as soon as I tuned up was what I was looking for.
The neck could not have been more suited to me if I had spec'd it custom, a happy coincidence, I love the profile, and the nut width is actually less than I thought
I preferred, but it works better for me than I could have imagined.
The construction is stunning, flawless and the feel is obvious high quality as soon as you pick it up.
So instead of just being my "unplugged" guitar, I decided to make it my main instrument, and figure out pickups that don't mess with my unplugged sound too much, I now use it for everything, and haven't actually used my other guitars since.
So....pickup solutions...I have settled on a Mi-Si acoustic duo soundhole magnet.....this is very cool, fat low end, very feedback resistant and active, but no batteries......it recharges in 60 seconds for 8 hours worth of playing. This means it has a tiny footprint and weighs mere ounces, but has the bandwidth of a Sunrise, no batteries mean no added weight on the guitar top.
Now this needs a stereo jack to recharge, so I reluctantly had to add a second socket to my L32 endblock to carry my internal mic and K&K PWM soundboard transducers.
I used a unibit and masked, measured and was ultra careful.
The K&K system is well known, has no batteries onboard and pickups up the wood and all the things that the magnetic is missing.
The mic is a countryman isomax and is tiny, and fixed to the tailblock with a tiny spot of hot glue.....it is powered through the jack socket by my preamp.
The whole sounds wonderful...larger than life, huge percussive and full, but my unplugged sound remains huge also!
Very happy, thanks all at Avalon!
Mi-Si in place;