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Study suggests wood type has little effect on guitars' sound

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by wyclif, Jan 21, 2019.

  1. wyclif

    wyclif Tele-Afflicted

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  2. String Tree

    String Tree Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Zzzzzzzzzzz........
     
  3. TwangToInfinity

    TwangToInfinity Tele-Afflicted

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    i agree

    as long as it is good sounding wood it doesnt matter what kind it is
     
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  4. Old Tele man

    Old Tele man Friend of Leo's

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    What? My kid's plastic Roy Rogers guitar isn't toneful?
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2019
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  5. TeleTucson

    TeleTucson Tele-Afflicted

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    Wrong forum. This has NOTHING to do with the discussions that will be perpetuated for all time on TDPRI regarding tonewood. The referenced article is not only about acoustic guitars, but about variations in wood on the back and sides.

    Don't get me wrong - I'm not a "tonewood" fanboy by any stretch. The sound from an acoustic guitar is presented to your ear (or the microphone) almost entirely by the ability of the wooden sounding board to boost the string vibrations to drive sound waves to your ear, which is in turn influenced at least to some degree by the aforementioned components in the article. Conversely, the electric guitar is overwhelmingly presented to your ear through the string interaction with the pickup magnetic induction into the amp and speakers, with only very minor influence, at best, by the wood of the instrument.

    I can't believe I'm responding to this :)
     
  6. eallen

    eallen Friend of Leo's

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    I totally disagree! I have found the wood people set on while playing makes a dramatic difference in the comfort of their rear sending resonant vibrations up their body thru the fingers. Those who set on a rough sawn oak chair and slide back and forth with the rythm are known to play more aggressively thus proving rough sawn lumber is the best tone wood.

    Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk
     
  7. galaxiex

    galaxiex Tele-Afflicted

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    I don't play with "wood"....

    It tilts the guitar at a bad angle....
     
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  8. Deeve

    Deeve Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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  9. Deeve

    Deeve Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    I see what you did there.
    And you're still gonna go blind.
     
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  10. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Silver Supporter

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    Seems like there was an agenda regarding that study. Just sayin'
     
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  11. matrix

    matrix Tele-Meister

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    Interesting article, but does not prove much.
    1) who were the guitarists that they brought in to do the tone testing? Acoustic guitarists vary greatly in their sensitivity to tone - or even interest in it.
    2) the study does not say that the guitars sounded the same. Just that they all sounded good. That is entirely reasonable. A well-built rosewood and a well-built mahogany guitar should both sound wonderful. But different. Which one is better? depends what you like. Does the difference matter? depends on you.

    On a very specific guitar type I *believe* I could correctly distinguish between an identically constructed mahogany and rosewood guitar (assuming very similar pieces of top wood). And I think I could - with careful sorting - find another dozen people who would be able to do so.

    But grab 50 random players from guitar center? Would not bet on any of them having the ear and knowledge to distinguish or relate back to a wood type.

    Add in confounding factors like four more types of wood (instead of picking between two now I have to distinguish between 6)? I think I would be lost.

    Go from a Martin D-style guitar to an OM or some custom builder's random design? i think that factor alone could confuse my ability to distinguish.

    Kinda lean towards @Obsessed comment...seems like there was a bit of an agenda.
     
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  12. L.A. Mike

    L.A. Mike Tele-Afflicted

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    If one can't hear the differences between types of wood, then one would be foolish to pay more for one than the other.
    If the appearance of the instrument doesn't matter, then the same thing is true. Why pay more for beautiful wood when plywood will do?
    People don't hear exactly the same. Some have trained their brains to recognize certain frequencies while others haven't. Some musicians develop perfect pitch, while some can recognized notes or chords just by hearing them while others can't. How can this be if we all hear the same? Because we don't. We may all hear in the same frequency range, but our brain must learn to recognize things our ears pick up and things that we paid attention to.
    My audiologist is a musician. She has clients who are musicians. She claims a lot of it is learned behavior. For some musicians, not all.
    Even though I have some hearing loss from playing in loud bands for most of my life, my audiologist says I hear things during hearing tests that many people either don't hear or they ignore. She says it's from listening to music hours a day for most of my life. Our brain learns what sounds are and stores that info because we listened so intently to music.

    As far as the article printed in the OP, this same type of "study" was conducted among some professional violinists. The scientists took some new violins and some Stradivarius' and in the end tried to make a case that the new violins were as good or better sounding than the Strads, according to the professional violinists who couldn't tell the difference.
    Yea, right!
    I smell an agenda.
    Or just someone trying to get a Ph.D
     
  13. Jupiter

    Jupiter Telefied Ad Free Member

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    We are at the stage now around here that there are more "yawn" posts than anything else when this comes up; what does that say about us?
     
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  14. rz350

    rz350 Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    my 6 pound Strats sound better than my 10 pound Strats...

    I like Paulownia, or whatever is light weight...
     
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  15. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    The misinformation age is rife with myth debunking zealots determined to prove that little or nothing really matters.
    Seems funny for so much energy to be spent arguing that something is unimportant.
    If stuff doesn’t matter, why do studies and write articles about it?

    Maybe the less we think stuff has qualities the more we will just say: “Alexa order me another guitar”.

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
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  16. notmyusualuserid

    notmyusualuserid Friend of Leo's

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    That 'we' are all PO'd with tonewood threads, and that it's about time the mods called them trolling and banned them?

    Nothing is ever 'proved', opinions get entrenched, tempers are raised, feelings are hurt and a week later it's all repeated.
     
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  17. boneyguy

    boneyguy Doctor of Teleocity

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    I'm not sure that the 4,000th thread on 'tonewood' will stir the waters much......but, let's wait and see.....
     
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  18. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    Why not just build a balsawood guitar body then and cake it in extra thick layers of poly? You could save yourself a fortune.
     
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  19. boop

    boop Tele-Meister

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    There are very real economic and ecological consequences involving what materials our stuff is made and how those materials are created. The study was put out by a psychology department, but their real point is that we don't need to use tropical hardwoods to make good instruments.
     
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  20. chezdeluxe

    chezdeluxe Poster Extraordinaire

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    If you can't hear the difference between a D28 and a D18 then you have cloth ears.
     
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