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Teach me on Taylor guitars

Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by Vladimir, Mar 16, 2017.

  1. Vladimir

    Vladimir Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Mar 17, 2003
    Zagreb, Croatia
    What’s the story with Taylor guitars and why are they so expensive?

    I tried two models at there store here, the bottom line model and the two steps up model. Both played nice, with the bottom line probably being a better player for the money.
    It’s difficult to properly get to know a guitar from a just a few minutes in a store so maybe I’m missing something here.
    How come they’re so expensive? Even the bottom line model costs much more than average, while the top end prices are astronomical, even compared to Martins and Gibsons,
    24 track likes this.

  2. 24 track

    24 track Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Nov 6, 2014
    kamloops bc
    My nefew had 2 really fine accoustics one brazilian rose wood with a canadian spruce top all hand made appearently and the other was Hawaiian Koa although very fine (and expensive ) dreadnaught style guitars they played very well , they're brochure indicated these models were hand made with your choise of woods solid not plywood , the hard ware is really high quality . but regardless , gets back to the question why are they so expensive, like a Les Paul, or SG why are they so expensive? they wrap the guitar in plastic perfling add 1000.00 to the price (Say what?) I have seen Taylors that are crap and will not intonate , the set up played fine in first position chords but play the same chord up the neck and it was no where near in tune.

    alot of these guitar manufacturers sell based on their name alone this may be the case, I have had fender and gibson guitars that are crap out of the gate, and a cheap chibson les paul copy that plays better than the real thing ( I still own them)
    Vladimir likes this.

  3. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 7, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    This certainly seems to be the trend in the last few years....It seems that all of the big name builders are getting ridiculously expensive, and Taylor is right up there

    I can't quite give a solid reason for all of this???

  4. Recce

    Recce Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

    May 3, 2016
    Northern Alabama
    So the next time you go to play a Taylor look at the sales person and go can I compare this to a Martin? Do you have a 000-28, an OM or a Martin Dread? then put that Taylor down.
    Greenmachine and Obsessed like this.

  5. callasabra

    callasabra Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 11, 2016
    I played a taylor acoustic. Finest acoustic I have ever played. I can't say the quality justifies the price, maybe it does maybe not. I think you need sometime with any guitar before making a judgment. a few minutes at the GC, etc isn't enough.
    I will say that I played an Austin acoustic that was very nice. $300 vs $3,000 makes it had for me to justify the additional cash. But the Taylor was better in all respects (except price).

    I believe there is a point of diminishing returns, where you spend more and get less improvement for the $.

    h2odog and JustABluesGuy like this.

  6. ebb soul

    ebb soul Poster Extraordinaire

    Jun 7, 2016
    Smyrna georgia

    Taylor Swift hasn't helped.
    Flakey and Jethro like this.

  7. Milspec

    Milspec Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 15, 2016
    It all comes down to the sound. Every brand has its own sound and Taylor's are normally a brighter, more lively tone than a Martin or Gibson. Some prefer that over the warmer tones of the others.

    I like brighter tones as well, but you can find that brightness in a Flame Maple guitar for less money. If money was not part of the equation, I would go with a Taylor over a Martin or Gibson, but I live in the real world where price is always part of the equation.

    They are priced where they are because there are people willing to pay it....same as every product. It just isn't coming from my wallet.
    Obsessed and RevBillyG like this.

  8. tery

    tery Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Sep 21, 2012
    Why are Gibson acoustics so expensive ?
    Taylor guitars are comparable to guitars in their price range .
    JustABluesGuy likes this.

  9. neckradius

    neckradius Tele-Holic

    Jan 17, 2013
    New York
    I think Taylor acoustics are pretty darn good, and apparently others feel that way and word has gotten out so now its a paying for the name thing. But you probably pay with the name for Martin too.
    JustABluesGuy likes this.

  10. Jethro

    Jethro Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 7, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    LMAO....I guess you're probably right

  11. RomanS

    RomanS Poster Extraordinaire

    Jun 21, 2006
    Vienna, Austria
    Maybe it's the cut for L. Ron Hubbard that raises the price?
    Doug 54 likes this.

  12. wayloncash

    wayloncash Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 7, 2012
    Houston, TX
    I played some good ones but have seen some that aren't barely playable out of the box (store). All of the companies need to up their quality control before they come at you with those extravagant prices.

  13. Teleguy61

    Teleguy61 Friend of Leo's

    I have played several Taylors and I own one, a 410-CE-L10. I wouldn't buy it new, I bought it used.
    They seem to me to be well-built modern design acoustic guitars, very solid, they play well and sound good.
    Also, Taylor has very comprehensive support, and excellent training for repair techs, so it is not hard to find someone who actually knows how to work on your guitar.
    They've got it going, have to give them points--product and service.
    JustABluesGuy and tery like this.

  14. Fenderflame

    Fenderflame Tele-Holic

    Aug 2, 2013
    Mid Sussex, UK
    Hey Vladimir

    Here's what you get for your $:

    1, American built
    2, Ethically sourced wood (see the article on their website about ebony)
    3, High quality materials - mostly solid top good tone woods.
    4, technological development - bolt on necks on ALL Taylors because they worked out how to make a more stable bolt on neck than most glued ones, expression systems, laser cutting etc.
    5, great service
    6, Above all, they play well and sound good.

    Find some other manufacturers that do all the above and they will probably be a similar price.

    They are not for everyone, some prefer Martin, Gibson, Fender, Takemine, Seagull, Breedlove or any of the others. All good guitars.

    I guess that for most Taylor customers they feel like they get value for money and Taylor continue to sell loads of them so the price must be right. I met Bob Taylor once, lovely fella and really concerned to hear what his customers want.

    I hope your search proves fruitful.
    Grux, VanManNW, Doug 54 and 5 others like this.

  15. callasabra

    callasabra Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 11, 2016
    @Fenderflame nailed it.

    I would add, I think Taylor puts a lot of time into training their employees, which costs.
    I have some heard others express @wayloncash 's opinions, and it usually went something like "I was at (guitar center, sam ash, etc) and played this taylor. man it sucked!"

    Style, personal choice makes a difference. With bluegrass players, it seems anything other than a martin is sacrilege. I have played martins. they are nice, but more boomy than I like. I personally like the brightness a Taylor has, but martin makes fine instruments too. I own a takemine (I like it) and I have played a breedlove and was very impressed with it.

    I am still looking for a Taylor T5 to try out. I just fear that I will want it after playing it.
    JustABluesGuy likes this.

  16. jazzereh

    jazzereh TDPRI Member

    Dec 19, 2014
    Ottawa, Canada
    I'd go with @Fenderflame as well. Lots of reasons to price any guitar at whatever price. It boils down to the sound and your budget [or ability to stomach the price]. I can't figure out why new Teles get priced where they are, just a slab of wood with some metal bits attached but folks pay the price. I own a Taylor and love to play it. Also own a Tele and love to play it as well. The price is what it is...
    JustABluesGuy likes this.

  17. Pineears

    Pineears Tele-Holic

    Jun 25, 2016
    Obtaining/Importing tonewoods for acoustic guitars has become more expensive.
    howlin, CC Ryan and JustABluesGuy like this.

  18. Flakey

    Flakey Friend of Leo's

    When your popular you can ask more.
    Taylors are extremely popular with a lot of players who play electric the majority of the time and in my experience most players now start on electric and go off into acoustics later in their playing life these days so the transition is easy for them.

    Taylors first made their name in the 12 string market. Leo Kottke being an early endorser.

    I don't like Taylors except for their 12 stings models because they are easy to play though a good Guild 12 string set up properly is better to my ears.

    Taylors don't have any character. When you hear a good Martin D 28 you know its a Martin. A good Gibson Adv. Jumbo being finger picked is a fantastic sound. A Gibson J 45 backing a singer is something special.

    Taylors; they're for electric guitar people that want an acoustic box sound run thru an preamp and if you want that get a Tak. They are cheaper and achieve the same result.
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2017
    moosie, Jethro and studio1087 like this.

  19. Texsunburst59

    Texsunburst59 Tele-Afflicted

    Nov 16, 2005
    Texas Gulf Coast
    For me, high guitar prices are a moot point.

    I never buy new, and I never pay high prices for in good quality electric and acoustic guitars.

    I always have a guitar that I'd like to own, and I hunt it down or wait until one becomes available at the price I want to pay.

    I waited over 15 yrs. to get my 1st good quality Taylor, and then found my next one about a year later.

    Found my 1st Taylor in a pawnshop. It's a '03 515-CE Jumbo Custom that I paid $270 for.

    The 2nd Taylor I found was my '05 414-CE L10 Fall Ltd for $646 in a pawnshop.

    Both were in excellent condition and both came with OHSC's.

    I'd have NEVER paid the asking price for either Taylor if they were being sold in E-Bay, Reverb, or any music store.

    I think if you really put in the time to hunt down one you're interested in, you might find one at a good price.

    You have to be diligent in your search and have to be VERY patient.
    JustABluesGuy likes this.

  20. JustABluesGuy

    JustABluesGuy Tele-Afflicted

    Sep 2, 2016
    Houston, TX
    Taylor guitars must have gone up some since I got mine. I went in planning to buy a Martin, and ended up with a Taylor instead.

    My first Taylor was a Big Baby. Lots of bang for the buck there. The only comparably priced Martin was made of Formica instead of wood, sounded terrible, and was a dog to play.

    The Taylor sounded great, was made of wood, and played almost as easily as my electrics. My decision was pretty easy.

    My wife has since bought me a 314ce and it is wonderful, though not cheap. My cousin has a Gibson jumbo guitar that he payed $2,500 for, and he thinks my $1,500 Taylor sounds and plays great. I'm used to mine of course, but I prefer it to his jumbo.

    It's only advantage as far as I have noticed, is that it is louder unplugged than my Taylor, and has more bling, but that doesn't do too much for me, or it's tone/playability.

    Taylors aren't for everyone obviously, but I am surprised to hear that they are more expensive than comparable models by Martin and Gibson.

    That wasn't the case when I bought mine, and I didn't notice it the last time I looked at them (though I was just playing, not seriously shopping).
    Grux likes this.

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