I would submit with All IMHO.
Regardless of builder it is what each individual hears when he/she makes the first strum on a guitar….It Is THE Most Personal of ALL inputs…..The first vibe, the first feel in the chest, the first percussion of the ear drum, the first feel in the finger tips….ALL these things establish our attraction to an iconic builder.
I was a man who was very happy with a 1993 Martin HD-28…. I could not have imagined a better sounding instrument.
Then….I discovered a SCGC Da-1 at a Guitar Center in Ft Myers Fl.
Since the discovery of that guitar I have spent enough $$ on Santa Cruz guitars to have bought a Bentley and then some.
WHY ??…..because when I play them, their voices ( just me, for myself) let ME fly…. I can be free of all cares, I can sail into the wind and heel hard to weather……. I can SOAR.
I am a better player because of the artistry and the science that Richard Hoover and his tribe have created out of wood and glue and steel…….and the history they have learned from.
1993 Martin HD-28 IR/Sitka
2001 SCGC F Cutaway Maple/German
2008 SCGC OT Madi/Italian
2015 SCGC OM “The Tree” Hog/ European
2016 SCGC 1934 D45 Braz/ Adi
2016 Taylor K62 CE Limited Edition 12 string all Koa
2019 SCGC FTC Granadillo/Redwood
Life is a journey…not a guided tour,
The Bay,The Gulf Stream , The Open Ocean are particular about who they share their secrets with.