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Honest question (no trolling): if tone wood is a myth, then why..

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by homesick345, Nov 5, 2016.

  1. homesick345

    homesick345 Poster Extraordinaire

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    ..semi hollow guitars sound SO different from their solibody counterparts??

    I'm thinking about the difference between Les Paul / 335; or Tele vs Thinline, etc..which are basically the same in electronics, pickups, scale, etc..

    What other explanation could there be other than the wood (or lack of)? In that case, wood clearly has an impact - or at least the mass of wood in a given instrument?
     
  2. jackinjax

    jackinjax Friend of Leo's

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    [​IMG]

    Tone wood?
     
  3. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Doctor of Teleocity

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    I'm not even sure people agree on the Tonewood premise. They use or apply their own premise to others, to argue their view. Hardly scientific.

    Do the wood properties make some difference? - most would say - yep, probably

    Can you blind listen to a fully constructed guitar in 'normal' use and identify the wood species? - some would say - probably not

    Construction.. Yep. Obvious impact

    Without a common agreement on what people mean by the phrase and idea of the 'tonewood myth' there cannot be a reasoned debate. That seems to be the perennial problem.
     
  4. tery

    tery Doctor of Teleocity

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    In a semi hollow body it is not the Type of wood but the lack of wood that produces the acoustic sound .
     
  5. jhundt

    jhundt Doctor of Teleocity

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    this could be down to how the hollow body resonance feeds back to the strings. Did you ever notice how readily most hollow-body guitars will begin to feed back at certain frequencies? well, the string notice that too.
     
  6. ebb soul

    ebb soul Poster Extraordinaire

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    Because it's not the wood your hearing, plywood, at that....it's the airspace in between you are hearing.
     
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  7. strat a various

    strat a various Friend of Leo's

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    Anyone who told you that the wood used in solid-body guitar construction doesn't influence the tone of the instrument when amplified was wrong. They may continually say that they are correct, but they are not. Their insistence that they understand how wood, or any other guitar-body material, affects resonance and string vibration, is delusional. Wood, wood density, wood type, whether the wood is properly kiln-dried, the weight of the wood ... all these things affect the tone of an amplified solidbody electric guitar. Not a myth, every professional builder knows it.

    Whether every player can hear the subtle differences is another matter.
     
  8. AviA

    AviA Tele-Meister

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    waiiiit a minute, with or without a distortion pedal ? :lol:
     
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  9. String Tree

    String Tree Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    It is all about how Wood Resonates. The Energy of the Vibrating String is transferred through the Wood and then Transferred through the Air to our Ears.
     
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  10. william tele

    william tele Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Thanks for settling that issue. I'll alert the media...
     
  11. Zepfan

    Zepfan Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

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    Whatever material used will have an effect on the guitars tone because the pickups also detect the body/neck vibrations and send them through the signal chain at the same time the string vibrations are being sent.

    Whether or not a certain type of wood can give a certain tone will have to be tested for a general sum result of many examples due to variables. Until that is done, we will continue to argue the point.
     
  12. Chris S.

    Chris S. Asst. Admin

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    Didn't we just see this movie? :rolleyes: CS
     
  13. kingoflimbs

    kingoflimbs Tele-Meister

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    the grundle, of sorts...
     
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  14. boredguy6060

    boredguy6060 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Just play the damn guitar already!
     
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  15. strat a various

    strat a various Friend of Leo's

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    Already did that. Warned them you'd be calling later. They said, "Oh no, not him again."
     
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  16. richa

    richa Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

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    One thing that is certainly true of a hollow-body or semi-hollow is that the structure as a whole that the strings are supported by is less rigid and has less mass. That affects attack, sustain and decay and it does so as a function of frequency. What we perceive as timbre has two dominant components (there's more but thinking first order effects here). These are the steady state wave form (the shape of the squiggles) and the envelope that is imposed on that wave form (the aforementioned attack, sustain, and decay).

    Setting aside the effect of materials on the squiggles ('cause I ain't goin' there) the pickup certainly captures the envelope. On a hollow-body I don't think the effect is all that subtle (though my understatement may be). :)

    I would like to think that this much is not controversial. But this is the internet.:D
     
  17. theprofessor

    theprofessor Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've never contributed to the tone/wood discussion, nor have I done any research on it. However, I just can't see how strat a various is not correct here in everything he says. Nothing else makes sense. How could all these factors relating to wood NOT affect sound in some way? But as strat a various points out, being able to discern exactly how is another matter altogether.
     
  18. Papa Joe

    Papa Joe Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    A-men to that Bro..
     
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  19. Mr Green Genes

    Mr Green Genes Tele-Afflicted

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    Either way, the body is impacting the sound of the guitar. The argument has been made that since an electric guitar's sound is amplified by pickups, the body can't have any impact on the timbre of the instrument, the only things impacting the voice of the instrument are the pickups.

    It's a silly argument, but it's been made, more than a few times.
     
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  20. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Here we go again....
    Can't we just add this to the other thread for more Epic-ness?
     
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