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Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com

Help end the tonewood debate once and for all!

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by CostlyTrick, Sep 8, 2015.

  1. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    Most Americans will go for the better deal. Companies won't buy the most expensive materials to make their products and take the chance that passing on the cost will be okay because the salesmen will be able to "market" the product effectively because that line of thinking will run a company into bankruptcy or at least put them in dangerous territory. A company involved in a crowded market will take all advantages it can to stay alive. If materials don't matter, there is absolutely no reason to use the most expensive material available. This is Business Logic 101.
    I.E. Furniture: How many furniture companies use nice solid woods? The only time they use solid wood, it will be the cheapest piece possible to maximize profit. This is why smaller guitar companies will use smaller pieces laminated together to form bodies with a veneer on top to get a target sound from the guitar. If the material didn't matter, every company would be making all their guitars out of plywood with paper veneer, even Gibson and Fender.

    I'm retired, I don't have a reason to go to bed at a respectable time.:lol:
     

  2. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    The spot of video that you showed is in the middle of the video, I'm talking about the end of the video were Jamie supposedly agrees with Him in the last email received.
     

  3. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    You say there's a difference, but say it's negligible. Well maybe it was for you, doesn't mean it will be for everybody else. You are still admitting that there is a difference.

    Leo Fender was an expert at making guitars and amps, but couldn't play guitar. Yet you still respect him don't you. Leo used quality wood didn't he? Was there a good reason for that or did he just jip everybody he could to make more money? He made great guitars that sounded good and he used the right quality materials to make them good and sound good.
    The people here that are disagreeing with me, I respect them. Just don't agree with them because of what I hear with my own ears and from what I've learned from my own experimentation and experiences.;)
     

  4. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    WOW

    This is very true.
    I have made body/neck changes over the years, some were great, some were just okay and one actually sounded worse.

    Since all parts of a guitar can contribute to its sound, then logic says that changing any part will affect the said guitars sound for better or worse. So logic dictates that wood matters. As for different sound form different species goes, why not? Why wouldn't a different species of wood with known differences in structure from other species sound different? Is this concept really too hard to understand? Wood does sound different from metal to me Ron, and I would bet that many others can tell the difference. I've never heard someone play a resonator and think to myself "That's an odd sounding wooden acoustic guitar". Ron, I'm sorry you can't tell a difference, but that's okay cause your still a great guy and a great builder.
    To say it doesn't matter cause you never heard it, is like me saying my wife didn't say anything because I didn't hear her.:lol: This line of thinking will get you hurt.;)

    Maybe Santa will bring you something nice this year.:p
     

  5. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    Have you ever changed pickups and not liked the results?
    Have you ever had pickups that sound crappy in one guitar only to sound great in another?
    I have. Wonder why these results happened?
     

  6. songtalk

    songtalk Friend of Leo's

    No I have never had pickups I liked that sounded bad in a guitar.

    Also the resonator is an acoustic instrument. You mic it. It is completely different from an amplified electric instrument with pickups in it.

    Electric guitar wood affects tone in the final product. It's not predictable. It's a waste of time chasing tone through body woods.

    We're just trying to save future generations time and money.

    You just keep on claiming that you are the only one with good ears and that Leo wasn't trying to get rich....because I'll bet you're wrong on both counts ;).
     

  7. MilwMark

    MilwMark Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

    Apr 29, 2013
    near Arnold's

    You seem really invested in that interpretation. But it's not what I got out of the vid (other than a headache), including the last exchange. Agree to disagree I guess.

    As others have noted, acoustics, where the wood top and sound hole are their own "amp" are a different story in my book.
     

  8. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Age:
    71
    May 1, 2003
    Jacksonville, FL
    They do... they absolutely do... problem is the interference all the other things contributing to the sound present...

    The wood does not impact the sound independently of everything else... since you cannot audition the final voice until it's all assembled, thus you cannot absolutely state such a specific tonal quality is the result of a specific piece of wood... an you can say definitively is that the sound of the wood is in all that music somewhere...

    It is possible to have a piece of wood who sonic signature is so overwhelming so as to mask all other contributors... Possible... but not likely... Personally I would think such a guitar would be a sonic disaster.... and, how would ya ever change the voice should the need arise, for any reason... the wood's voice would negate anything ya did..

    That over powering wood's voice seems to be the thought of the day... seems some feel it is preeminent, and everything else is subordinate... there's wrong, there's rong, then there's OMG!! :eek:


    rk
     

  9. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    I had a set of pups that didnt sound good in a Aspen body, moved them to a Oak body with the same scale, same style trem of same type materials, same material nut Maple neck with Rose wood boards but managed to sound different. So why do I get different results? Maybe the Aspen body wasn't resonant enough, but then why did a set of other pickups sound awesome in it that didn't sound great in another body? I guess that's all magic.
     

  10. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    You are the one that showed the clip from the video that was in the half way point and I was talking about the end of the video that showed a different outcome. Not invested, just trying to show the point. Your the one trying to make a different point from the video showing the earlier part in the discussion. Seems to me that you are more invested than I. Maybe we just got our thoughts crossed.
     

  11. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    Resonators are acoustic, didn't say they weren't. They have metal cones and sound different that all wood acoustics.
     

  12. Zepfan

    Zepfan Friend of Leo's

    Nov 30, 2013
    Horn Lake, MS
    How can all the final results of so many guitars built over the years be wrong?
    We have already talked about the difference between 2 guitars would be hard to establish tonewood results because of variables. Which is why many guitars of each species have to be compared for an average result. then you get a GENERAL idea of what a particular species has to offer. Don't miss the Forrest because a couple of trees are in the way.
     

  13. moosie

    moosie Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    60
    Jul 18, 2010
    Western Connecticut
    Post #273

    Any closer to "ending the debate" OP?

    Any further? Perhaps... :lol:
     

  14. Speedy454

    Speedy454 Tele-Meister

    408
    Oct 1, 2013
    Highland, IL
    Orig. quote by Ronkirn

    "It is possible to have a piece of wood who sonic signature is so overwhelming so as to mask all other contributors... Possible... but not likely... Personally I would think such a guitar would be a sonic disaster.... and, how would ya ever change the voice should the need arise, for any reason... the wood's voice would negate anything ya did.."



    This is absolutely true. I did it. On an build a few years ago, I used a slab of elm from a tree I cut in the woods behind my house. I failed to use the rule of thumb to let it air dry 1 year per inch of thickness, and failed to check with a moisture gauge because I was too cheap to buy one at the time. I used a 3" thick chain sawn slab that air dried for about 8 months to build a solid body guitar.

    The finished guitar had very little natural resonance. Meaning unplugged, the body did not vibrate or resonate. Unplugged it was very muffled and quiet. I installed my '74 Gibson T tops, and it sounded dull, bland and muffled. I installed a set of fairly bright single coil P90 type pickups and it was tolerable. Barely. It sat on the stand unplayed for a couple years. I picked it up on a whim after sitting so long, and I guess the thin lacquer let it "breath" (pun intended) and it sounded just fine. 2 years of air drying really woke it up. It is fairly bright, to a point that I use the tone control occasionally, and the body resonates just like a normal solid body should.

    So. Can you have a dud slab body? sure can! Will it have a significant negative affect on tone? Sure will. And if my tin ears can pick it up, anyone's can.
     

  15. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Age:
    71
    May 1, 2003
    Jacksonville, FL
    A GENERAL Idea is only a general idea... that "Idea" is sculpted not only by anecdotal experiences, it is also sculpted by the psychology behind those anecdotal examples. And who’s the General? what qualifications? Anecdotal?

    Then there's this... take a random selection of a handful of any guitars... plug 'em in to various amplifiers, and play… let someone blindfolded, and I don't care who's guessing... no one is gonna guess which is made of what wood with anything that even resembles accuracy.

    Various amps?? Yep… i mean, all those anecdotal past examples come to us, all played through a multitude of different ams and room acoustics, don't they? Yet the anecdotal predictability of the wood's character still presses through, if the contention that the wood's character IS predictable and identifiable in completely random selections of playing circumstances.

    we have ALL had preconceived ideas of what a wood is SUPPOSED to sound like... If you see a piece of Mahogany, as an example, or know the body is made of that wood, you already know what you expect to hear... enter the McGurk effect... You will hear precisely that…

    Alter that slightly, so you cannot see or don't know what wood you're hearing, and the end results are exactly the opposite. Perhaps that’s the KrUgcm effect.


    If any one of ya made, say 3 guitars all exactly alike out of Mahogany (I use Mahogany as the example, because most think it produces a more mellow, dark to some, tone, every time) Make the 3 as close as possible to the same guitar, but with Classic Humbuckers on one, say, Don Mare’s pickups in another, and Bardens in the 3rd.. do “YOU” really think those 3 are gonna all sound like Mahogany, and ONLY Mahogany?

    and, why doesn’t a Danno sound like Masonite, and what would tempered Masonite sound like,,, or a Epi Sound like plywppd… ?


    A few years back, Premiere Guitar Magazine did a series of articles over a 3 month period. It was called "The Psychology of Sound"... "The Psychology of Tone”, and “The Cult of Tone”…

    those of y'all that dismiss my contributions throughout this thread may wanna take a few moments, and go read 'em.

    those participating in the articles were Licensed Medical Psychs, that also were pretty darn good guitarists...

    The articles address much of what has been bounced around here...

    Ron Kirn
     

  16. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Age:
    71
    May 1, 2003
    Jacksonville, FL
    Speedy... a dull sounding piece of wood is a completely different substrate than one that simply is not dried correctly...

    Ron
     

  17. deytookerjaabs

    deytookerjaabs Friend of Leo's

    Jun 5, 2015
    Nashville
    I have to say, been at it a while, and have been part of the guitar of the week/month club for a good portion of that while. Also having took lessons at a vintage shop then when in school gave lessons at that shop for 7+ years I've played a butt ton of guitars.

    I agree with Ron, there's too many variables at play. I mean, the best I could possibly do with my ear, in my estimation, is perhaps guess whether two almost identical guitars (like a tele) were very light or very heavy when you can hear the guitar and the amp. But, that could be psychological too.

    I mean, changing strings/picks/pickup height yields bigger differences to my ear in terms of guitars with similar construction.

    I will say, again, the material of reflection probably makes just as big of a difference as to what degree the bridge/nut/tuners transfer any vibrations to the wood. Putting an aluminum pickguard on a strat will affect the tone more so than swapping a similar body made of a different "tonewood" ..I've done that one a few times.
     

  18. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Age:
    71
    May 1, 2003
    Jacksonville, FL
    yessirree . . .

    the problem has always been Topic Myopia ... someone says Paint, or wood, or capacitor, or any one of a multitude of other things that all are supposed to alter the overall voice by a noticeable amount... and "everyone" zeros onto that one factor like a moth to a flame....

    it's as if nothing else used in the making of a guitar has any effect, or if it does, it is mandatory that it's impact be quantified, and assigned a specific position of importance on the list of things that impact sound...

    none are any more important than if the Barista is using Tap water or Bottled water while brewing the coffee, when they dump a quart of different flavors, a few dumps of sugar, whipped cream... and some nuts... the difference in the water kinda gets lost under a mountain of artificial flavoring..



    rk
     

  19. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    57
    Mar 2, 2010
    Maine
    While something like the McGurk effect shows how easily we can be fooled into misreading sounds we hear, the very fact that this has been identified and studied shows that we can also learn to hear what had previously fooled us.

    When at the county fair with our senses bombarded by sights and smells and sounds, one may not hear the tractor pull, another may notice it, and a third may be able to tell the difference between the sounds of an old IH and an old John Deere.
    And the new mother at the fair may only hear a baby crying, while a gambler may only hear the callers at the games.

    We do tend to hear what we want to hear, or what we set out to hear, even when we set out to hear nothing at all.
    By the time we post our emphatic opinions on internet forums, we've likely stopped listening.
     

  20. mkster

    mkster Tele-Afflicted

    Sep 25, 2010
    Montreal Quebec
    We were each created different but also the same , same idea applies to wood .

    Mark
     

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