Wood type changes the tone of an electric guitar

Wood type changes the tone of an electric guitar

  • Yes

    Votes: 57 54.3%
  • No

    Votes: 48 45.7%

  • Total voters
    105
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ScareDe2

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OP:

There are literally DOZENS of threads on here discussing this SAME TOPIC.

One of the recent ones actually featured the same video you posted.

The conclusions we ALWAYS concur on are:

  • You can make a fine-sounding electric guitar starting with a toilet seat.
  • The sound the actual GUITAR produces is primarily a function of the PICKUPS, CAPS, and STRINGS.
  • Beyond that, tone comes from your FINGERS (i.e., PRACTICE), and your PEDALS.
  • Having a non-craptastic amp helps some.
  • When you're gigging in a noisy bar full of drunks in rut with an aggressive drummer and a cheap PA, none of this really freakin' matters.

Please use the search engine and seek out these previous threads before you post this again.


The return of the tone zombies : "I think I heard a difference"

Land-of-the-Dead-Bub-Zombie-Headphones.jpg
 

SonicMustang

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I honestly don't know what you are trying to prove or clarify for yourself with all those polls...

I think he's still upset he got roasted a bit by the patrons here for the thread that started all this where he claimed that polishing his guitar finish took the guitar tone from craptastic to fantastic. The thread was long, hilarity ensued, then all these polls started.

In response to the actual poll question....it probably does to a very small degree. When you can get a decent tone out of a guitar made from legos, or a toilet seat, or concrete for that matter, who cares. Especially once you are playing loud to fight for sonic space against a drum set and all of the drunk idiots at the bar. At that point you aren't going to hear the difference.
 

jvin248

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.

While there will be dozens who can listen and say 'they heard a difference!', there is not a useful tone differentiation between those trials.
And then just swap a five cent tone cap and you'll get a more clear tone shift even when the tone knob is 'dimed'.
Or tip the pickup for a little more/less bass or treble.

I do appreciate the youtube tester said they chose the Tele configuration because the pickup is hard mounted to the bridge to make the pickup height identical test to test. That just reinforces the importance of pickup heights to tone.

.
 

Boxla

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Solid body electric guitar, Unplugged or plugged in? Unplugged, yes the wood makes some difference. But even the same species of wood will produce a different tone depending on the variables. Plugged into an amp, running through some pedals, or built in distortion=no way. Like other have said in many other threads, blind test a swamp ash PRS with humbuckers, with a Music Man MM90 with a Tele, with a Les Paul and run em all through an amp with some dirt and very few, if any, will get all four of those 100% correct.
 

Tele-friend

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I thought we covered it all in this thread :lol::
https://www.tdpri.com/threads/all-o...es-a-discernible-difference-in-sound.1082974/

To sum it up, in last polls, a majority of electors, about 60%, voted a perceivable sonic difference between different guitar finishes on acoustic guitars. But when it comes to electric/amplified instruments, the percentage has dropped considerably to only 20%.

Now the wood. Do you hear any difference?



I hear the mahogany, as expected, giving the warmest and fullest tone of the three. Even with full distortion.

The problem with your poles is that they are oversimplified, only yes or no answers. Like some wrote wood density is important for the sound, but there are diferences even inside the same species. Lets look at the wood densities* (kg/m3) of different species (common in solid body electric guitars):
-Alder 420 - 680
-Ash, white 650 - 850
-Ash, black 540
-Ash, European 710
-Basswood 320 - 590
-Mahogany, African 500 - 850
-Mahogany, Cuban 660
-Mahogany, Honduras 650
-Mahogany, Spanish 850
-Poplar 350 - 500
So which Mahogany are we talking about (there are different Mahogany species) - Honduras or Spanish? Which Ash? African Mahogany can be lighter (less dense) than ash or alder. Alder and black ash can be lighter than basswood. Strange, right?

What you want is a straightforward answer to a complicated topic. Good luck.

*source: https://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/wood-density-d_40.html
 
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Freeman Keller

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I definitely think the wood makes a difference. Here are two guitars that I made at the same time, same construction and wood thickness. Both guitars have redwood tops. One has ebony fretboard and walnut back and sides, the other has rosewood board with cedar back and sides.

The cedar guitar sounded good 1st time I plugged it in. The walnut one took a year of fussing with pickups and bridge types in order to get a good sound.
That's my experience; it all seems a bit mysterious sum of parts thing~ View attachment 907408

Doug, I immediately see differences in those guitars besides the tone woods - pickups, bridges, tailpieces... That pretty much negates the tonewood comparison.
 

985plowboy

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Dude, I don’t want to get sucked into any big argument, but I say “yes” and here’s why.
I believe that a nice guitar body made from solid wood will sound different than a
“compressed beaver poo” body.
(a million thanks to the TDPRI’r who gave us that phrase)
Can that difference be overcome with tone knobs??
Yes.
But there is a difference.
 

dougstrum

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Doug, I immediately see differences in those guitars besides the tone woods - pickups, bridges, tailpieces... That pretty much negates the tonewood comparison.
Freeman, the guitar with trapeze and aluminum bridge start off much like the brown guitar, it had a strat type hard tail bridge.
I was so bummed because it was the really cool looking one of the two and it just didn't sound good.
It went through many changes
pickups/bridge materials and arrangements before I arrived at the final setup. It now sounds like a jazz box and I use it when singer and have duo gigs.
 

mkdaws32

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I said no - but I don't believe it is a "yes or no" question. Wood type has a very small impact on the tone that is most audible played perfectly clean (yes, I watched the Glenn Fricker "tone wood" video/test). But there are other factors that affect a solid body electric guitar's tone much, much more, making the wood type all but irrelevant in a mix. This starts with age of strings, solid contact of the string at the nut and bridge and pickups/electronics, etc.
 

ping-ping-clicka

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I'm gonna go waaaaay out on a limb here and say that every aspect of your guitar affects the sound, from the nut to the bridge to to the thru body or top loader , the strings the pick up and the whole of all the component all interact to create how your guitar sounds, It's physics plain and not so very simple. maybe.
images (4).jpg
 

Big Swifty

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…a teeny tiny itsy bitsy weeny bit.
If u listen real close.
And happen to be playing it in an anechoic chamber.
Not plugged in.


B.S.
 

mexicanyella

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What do you think makes the biggest difference? It ain’t the wood.
View attachment 907378

I am 97.6% sure that the reverse-slant bridge pickup makes a sonic difference in that Strat!

The one all-mahogany guitar I have owned did in fact have a magical snarling-yet-warm tonal quality, and it was an early 60s Melody Maker. However it also had a glued-in neck, a crusty old Leo Quan “Badass” bridge, a brass nut and a reverse-slant Strat pickup in the bridge position. So many variables there that it gets hard to attribute that sonic quality to the mahogany, I think.
 

vintagelove

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For folks who voted no, you should really check out the warmoth YouTube channel. They do very fair tests and the difference are absolutely audible.

There is more than tonewood videos, ss frets vs nickel, truss rods, weight relief, etc. It's very interesting.
 

eallen

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Why oh why must some things be polled?!!! Can it be that no prior posts of the questions can be found with a search? :eek:

Build'em, play'em, enjoy'em, and if the sound sucks practice & take lessons until the don't because nothing effects how good a guitar sounds like the quality of the player! :confused:
 
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