Guitar Woods

02005-02-03 | Uncategorized | 3 comments

I would like to hear your comments regarding DeVoe’s Indian rosewood/spruce guitar as opposed to the one you play with the different rosewood and cedar
top.

More overtones = darker and more complex sound

Here is a list of side and back tone woods from bright to dark, with a little comparison to electric guitars for those guys who don’t have any experience with nylon guitars:

1. Cypress – brightest, the Stratocaster of Flamenco guitars (or maybe Telecaster?)
2. Madagascan Rosewood – Strat with humbuckers?
3. Indian Rosewood – Les Paul?
4. Brazilian Rosewood – the darkest sounding wood, like a Gibson 335

Personally, I prefer the Madagascan Rosewood over the Indian and Brazilian rosewood. It is a little brighter and has just the right mix of brightness and complexity for me.

Now, regarding the top wood… the most common choices are spruce or cedar. I used to love spruce top guitars. They don’t sound as great in the beginning, but keep improving for years to come. Now I play only cedar-top guitars. A spruce guitar has to be nurtured. I don’t want to take the time to do that. Not, when I can get the sound I am looking for from a cedar top – right away…

3 Comments

  1. Victor

    Oh, I always thought that cedar vs. spruce was warmer sound vs. brighter sound – but it actually has more to do with the wood used in the guitary body? Very interesting!

    Once I tried out a classical guitar with a solid walnut body and cedar top. Had a really beautiful warm tone and good projection – but is resonated forever! Guess it would only be good for really slow songs because a quick passage of notes sounded all muddy.

    Reply
  2. Ottmar

    Every little detail makes a difference. A thick top will sound very different from a real thin top. Same goes for the sides and back. Construction techniques such as the bracing will make a huge difference. In the end one has to use ones ears and hands to make judgement. Some guitars can sound great, but the strings don’t snap back fast enough – they feel sloppy for example. Ah, it is endless – and probably always a compromise…

    Reply
  3. Matt Callahan

    Considering how warm the negra Devoe sounds now, how do you think age will effect it? I assume the tone will continue to grow warmer. Will that change your feeling toward using it?

    Reply

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