Gibson has raided its archives to borrow an idea for a player-sided soundhole that dates back to 1964, modernised it, and rolled it out on a series of innovative acoustic guitars that are among the most affordable instruments it has ever made.
The Generation Collection comprises four models – the parlour-sized G-00, the J-45-alike G-45, the jumbo cutaway G-200 and the G-Writer – and sees the debut of the Player Port, a design feature that Gibson promises will offer guitarists a perfect reproduction of their sound and a more immersive playing experience.
Built in Bozeman, Montana, the same plant the Gibson core US line is built, the Generation Collection acoustics share a lot of design DNA. Across the board we've got solid Sitka spruce tops with solid walnut on the back and sides, utile necks and striped ebony fingerboards.
These models also have a slightly thinner body profile, a player-friendly Advanced Response neck profile, and a flatter 16" fingerboard radius that is sure to give them a more contemporary feel.
While the G-00 and G-45 are all acoustic, the G-Writer and G-200 come fitted with L.R. Baggs Bronze undersaddle pickup systems, with its preamp controls mounted discretely in the soundhole.
There some other subtle cosmetic differences, too. The G-00 and G-45 have dot inlays while the G-Writer and G-200 have G-Collection Single Bar fretmarkers. But all have the same tactile satin nitro Natural finishes.
Each guitar in the series has belly down, closed slot bridges made from striped ebony, TUSQ nuts and Grover Mini Rotomatic tuners. And the construction techniques are similar, too, with traditional scalloped X bracing patterns and necks that join the body with a compound dovetail joint, set with hot hide glue.
The vibe throughout is that this is a fresh take on Gibson classics of yore, with the G-45 assuming the mantle of the series' workhorse strummer, the G-200 your go-to for big jumbo acoustic guitar tones, while the G-Writer cutaway offers a cutaway dreadnought shape to put a little boom behind your chords.
The G-00, meanwhile, feels very much like an updated on the much-loved L-00 and arrives at a time when the small-bodied acoustic guitar has never been more popular.
Those looking for a high-end acoustic guitar without necessarily the high-end budget might well get along with the Gibson Generation Collection, with prices ranging from £899 / $999 for the G-00 to £1,999 / $1,799 for the G-200. And you get a deluxe padded gig-bag to sweeten the deal. For more details, head over to Gibson.