Discussion in 'Music, Box Office, TV & Books' started by Nitefly, Apr 11, 2015.
Had a rest from Facebook v2
I'm now looking for a nice acoustic guitar up to £1000.
I like the look and sound of the Taylor 214ce but I also like the Yamaha APX series.
I don't really need it to be an electro acoustic and I don't mind either way but it so happens that the guitars I like the look of always seem to be electro acoustic.
I don't want something that needs to be looked after - my guitars are kept in the living room on stands and are therefore susceptible to the temp and humidity changes...I don't want something that needs to be kept at a certain temp or humidity level.
Get one made of plastic?
All wood are suceptible to humidity, it's not a brand thing, it's a material thing.
I don't own an acoustic but are they really that susceptible to being affected by temperature? They are supposed to be gigged surely.
I had my Yamaha in 1971 and around 1982 I had to have it repaired because I'd left it in a cold room for around 3 years.
It's been fine since then and I use it most days.
I know it's not a brand thing but say a solid sitka spruce top may be less suitable to my environment than say a spruce laminate or koa, likewise a rosewood fretboard may be better than an ebony fretboard.
Usually when paying more you get better woods but these exotic and solid woods may not be as stable for a guitar kept in less than favorable conditions - central heating on in winter and we do dry clothes on them.
The wood can crack if it dries out or it can warp if it gets too damp due to humidity.
I want a nice instrument but not at the expense of stability.
Oh and I have no plans for gigging, I just enjoy playing at home.
They don't break the minute your room drops to 10% humidity or goes to 100%. Just don't have it in there too long. Best thing is get a hygrometer for like £5 and keep an eye on it now and again. the UK is fine, anything between 40-60% is fine and even if it drops to 20% is fine but as a general rule of thumb, around 45-55% i think is where they are happiest at.
Don't put it near the radiator or the fire place and it should be fine.
I have a Taylor 314ce. It is an excellent instrument.
From what I recall when at the guitar shop, the 200 series are a laminate back and sides, so less prone to temp/humidity changes. doesn't mean they are impervious though.
All of the taylor guitars I looked at were lacquered tops which makes them relatively durable. From the 300 series up all of the taylors are solid wood construction, no laminates or composites. Also they come with a quality hard case.
I believe the 200 and below come with a padded 'gig-bag'. I figure if you're shelling out a grand on a guitar, then you need to keep it in a hard case. I've seen the looks of despair on the owners of broken guitars...
The electro acoustic stuff is pretty good and having the option to use it at home with an amp or complimentary effects can be a real bonus - if that's how you want to roll. The 'expression system' on my taylor is very straightforward -iirc it's volume, bass, treble; utilising a microphone and a peizzo pickup (either under the bridge or the tongue of the fretboard, I forget which). I like it.
Regarding acoustic guitars in general, and expensive guitars in particular - they all need careful looking after so they don't dry out and either deform or crack the top, bracing or neck/body joint. Such is the nature of acoustic guitars. People often have this idea that because they paid £££££ for a guitar, that it needs less maintenance, because better materials / construction. I would say the opposite is true, they need more attention. Finer tolerances, lighter more resonant woods, exotic woods, all in all you could compare an expensive taylor or martin to a ferrari or porche; sure they look, sound and drive great, but they are finely tuned machines that exist in a delicate balance of performance and strength. As a result they need more specialist servicing than your bog standard mundano school-runabout-shopping car.
As far as fretboard materials, rosewood or ebony... to me it's an aesthetic choice only. Looked after both will last a lifetime. A little boiled linseed oil from time to time; a few drops once or twice a year is all it will ever need - rub into the wood and wipe of the excess immediately, no need to let it sit.
The tops of the guitars, sitka spruce or other wood, that's all down to the tone of the guitar. I'd suggest that if you are looking at buying a guitar based on how the top responds to humidity, then you're missing the point of what the top is for. Just go and play a few and see how the tone and sustain of the guitar is different from model to model, instrument to instrument. Comparing my taylor to my old seagull is like night and day in terms of tone, sustain and harmonic response.
If you're serious about getting an expensive acoustic guitar, keep it in the case when you're not using it and you will prolong the life and stability of the guitar almost indefinitely.
To judge the comparison in this I'll tell you about my visit to guitar guitar in birmingham. I went there with the intention of taking away a brand new guitar, specifically a taylor or martin. I looked at the martins for a bit, but to me they didn't have that 'something', either in the tone I was looking for, or the aesthetic look of the guitar itself. They're great guitars, just not quite what I was looking for.
On to the taylors. I started with the 200 series and whilst they were nice, they didn't have the same feel or sound as a non laminate. They're very bright and mid-rangey guitars - the neighbours will have no trouble hearing you play! But if I was going to spend a close to a grand, or more, then I wanted something more from the guitar.
The 500 series taylors and up start to get seriously expensive very quickly. A lot of that cost is in the materials used in construction (oh, for a complete indian rosewood guitar!) and the level of decoration and pearl / pearlescent inlays to the fretboard, body and binding. Excessive 'mother of toilet-seat' as I like to call it, is not really my thing.
I played a few in the store, but for 2-5k it was really hard to tell the difference in how the guitars played. It came down to either a 300 or a 400 series guitar. The 300 is taylors entry level all wood, non-laminate, and the 400 is built on top of that with materials and detailing. I was liking the look of the 300's as they have quite subdued binding and detail work to the rosette etc (having done some research online before visiting the shop). The 400's they had were starting to be more expensive than I really wanted and they didn't have the body shape I was comfortable with. So I looked more closely at the 314ce they had hanging out in the shop.
It was terrible! Action a mile high, hardly any apparent tone or sustain... I was really disappointed and was considering jacking in the search for another day. I sat about for a bit, then asked one of the guys if they had any others in storage and if so could I look at them - he brought out 2. In their cases with the transport tags still on. I had a good look at them both. Compared to the one on the rack in the store, well it was like they were totally different instruments with nothing in common with the one I first looked at. To all intents and purposes they were perfect. Out of the two I chose the one who's top grain I liked the look of; one was slightly paler than the other.
Why was there such a difference between these 314ce taylor guitars? Two had been kept in storage, in their cases safe and sound. The other was effectively a display model and has suffered for being out in the heated and humid atmosphere of the shop. I don't know how long it had been out for, but it was quite apparent that it had suffered for it. I'm not saying it was trashed - a tweak to the trussrod and I'm sure it would have been fine, but taylor themselves talk about humidity and their guitars (so does martin) and how to keep them in good shape.
Bottom line is look after your guitar and the chances are you'll never have to worry about it drying out excessively or reacting to temperature and humidity changes sufficient to send the guitar out of tune when it's been stood for a bit and not played. If I put my guitar away in its case and get it out a week or a month later it still holds perfect tune.
Seems I've rambled on quite a bit lol. Get what feels right to you. Play a few and I can guarantee there will be something about that one guitar that will let you know it's yours.
Just be sure to share some pics of your new shiny on here so we can all appreciate it
I inherited my dads ~1968 EKO Ranger VI last year. Nothing special and not made of anything exotic however I found it's very sensitive to humidity sometimes. I had it professionally looked over, neck re-seated and new saddle however for a few weeks it sounded different every time I "played" it. Eventually I bought a hard case and keep it in that in the same place in the house and it eventually it's settled down.
So now it's just me that needs to get gud. Decided I didn't want it to be an ornament, plus being the only real tangible thing left behind from my dad (who hardly played it) I decided I'd like to do it a little justice.
Is guitar guitar good then? I was going to go to the Birmingham store for a nosey around.
I am only 30 mins from Liverpool though so going to have a look around there first.
Does anyone remember sound control in Salford, I went there once a good few years ago and was amazed at the sheer amount of guitars hanging from the walls. I sat and played around 20 different guitars and didn't end up buying one from there anyway.
I keep my guitars on stands in the living room and will continue to do so as it is so easy to pick one up for a bit of noodling whenever I get the urge - missus nipped to the loo mid film, no problem...fit a bit of playing in that 2 minutes.
Also I think guitars are good to look at and admire and I love them being on display.
I'm getting tempted by the Yamaha LL16 ARE, I like Yamaha guitars. As daft as this may sound, a lot of folks recommend the seagull S6 series but I just don't like the head-stock, I think it looks weird and I don't think I could get on with it.
Lets play a game...if you had £800 to spend on an acoustic guitar what would you buy and why.
Guitar guitar in Birmingham is good but not easy to get to by train and only has about 5 parking spaces so can be difficult to find parking.
I've spent £1000s in that shop
I drove up there two weeks ago. It was absolutely AMAZING. There is a whole acoustic shop and a seperate electric guitar shop a couple of doors down. Amazing customer service too - brought me cups of tea and brought an amp similar to mine to the sound room so I could play as if it were home.
I fact I took a picture:
Wall behind me was guitars too.
I had no problem with parking but got there at store opening. There must be big standard street parking relatively nearby and you could always block someone in for 2 mins to collect your purchase.
All that floor space used to be blocked with amps and other gizmo's, it looks empty.
That's the acoustic only shop - the electric shop is the same size (if not bigger) and is a couple of doors down.
Are you on about GuitarGuitar?
This is how I remember it - https://firstname.lastname@example.org...4!1s7p7A7C5Msa0EdisWqg5qGw!2e0!7i13312!8i6656
Where is the acoustic shop?
That is the acoustic shop - there is a completely separate electric guitar shop located just down the road.
I only had to walk 20 yards.
It wasn't there the last time I went.
Whats the Camden store like?
I'm in Camden on Thursday for a meeting and will hopefully have a few hours spare afterwards to go for a look around.
Separate names with a comma.