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#2919595 - 04/06/18 07:16 AM I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars
CEB Offline
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My interest are becoming more and more centered on acoustic instruments. I wonder if it is an age thing or just the nature of the work environment .... lower stage levels, In Ear Monitors, etc....

Something my collection lacks is a good traditional steel string acoustic. My one steel string is an Ovation I used on the road in the 80s. It worked great through PAs compared to other guitars at the time but it is difficult to play sitting.

I like slotted headstock tuners. I think I want a smaller body guitar like a parlor. I'm mainly a finger picking stylist and I think the smaller guitar would be easier to play in front of the computer where I do most my work at home.
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#2919645 - 04/06/18 09:59 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: CEB]
Larryz Offline
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I have a Takamine New Yorker steel string Parlor acoustic/electric with slotted head stock, that I enjoy playing and a Taylor steel string acoustic/electric. Both of them get a lot of use... thu
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#2919794 - 04/06/18 10:31 PM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: CEB]
Caevan O'Shite Offline
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Originally Posted By: CEB
My interest are becoming more and more centered on acoustic instruments. I wonder if it is an age thing or just the nature of the work environment .... lower stage levels, In Ear Monitors, etc....

Something my collection lacks is a good traditional steel string acoustic. My one steel string is an Ovation I used on the road in the 80s. It worked great through PAs compared to other guitars at the time but it is difficult to play sitting.

I like slotted headstock tuners. I think I want a smaller body guitar like a parlor. I'm mainly a finger picking stylist and I think the smaller guitar would be easier to play in front of the computer where I do most my work at home.


I think it's just that... you like acoustic instruments, vintage-style parlor guitars, and playing fingerstyle. What's not to like? Pick and choose. (Pun intended. wink thu )
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#2919808 - 04/07/18 01:37 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: Caevan O'Shite]
Dannyalcatraz Offline
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I am constantly tempted by acoustic instruments, but I keep getting distracted by electric gear!
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#2919820 - 04/07/18 04:49 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: Dannyalcatraz]
whitefang Offline
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Well, as most know, all I have are acoustic( TWO only ). A six string and a 12.

Slotted headstocks don't either interest nor matter much to me. And I've found that most "parlor" style acoustics do have slotted headstocks. And MARTIN makes some good ones( WILLIE NELSON got a LOT of use out of HIS! wink ).

There's a time and place for anything, and acoustics certainly do have their place( easier to hear around a campfire, if camping where no electrical outlets are found) as well as electrics. So it does boil down to personal preference and particular interest and use.
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#2919840 - 04/07/18 06:33 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: whitefang]
CEB Offline
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I may have stumbled on the answer of an old question of mine. When I was young I taught guitar at a store who was a Takamine dealer. Takamine came out with a great line of electrics that reminded of what later became PRS. But then they disappeared. They went back to just acoustic guitars. Maybe they became ESPs?


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#2919980 - 04/08/18 04:07 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: CEB]
whitefang Offline
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I don't think so. I think Takamine just gave up making solid body electrics. But it piqued my curiosity, and I found this:

n 1975, Hisatake Shibuya opened a shop called Electric Sound Products (ESP) in Tokyo, which provided custom replacement parts for guitars and quickly gained a reputation for the high-quality of these replacement parts. At this time, ESP also began crafting guitars under the ESP and Navigator brand in the Japanese market.[citation needed] Ronnie Wood of The Rolling Stones and Akira Takasaki were users of these guitars.[citation needed]

ESP replacement parts were first introduced into the US in 1983 and began crafting custom instruments for local New York artists between 1984 and '85. Among these artists were Page Hamilton (Helmet), Vernon Reid (Living Colour), Vinnie Vincent and Bruce Kulick (KISS), and Ronnie Wood (The Rolling Stones). At this time, ESP also introduced the 400 Series as the first production line to be distributed in the US.

During this same period, ESP began making the bodies and necks for Kramer Guitars and other manufacturers were using ESP as an OEM such as Robin Guitars, Schecter Guitar Research and DiMarzio. Many traits of the Kramer line are still visible including neck construction and body bevels. ESP tooled up for Tom Anderson's shaved bolt on neck heel on the Schecter bodies and this has since become a feature of their house brand.

Actually, I've never HEARD of Takamine until the later '90's, and in looking up all this was surprisd they've been making guitars since 1962! shocked

I personally don't care for Takamines, but that doesn't mean I think they're no good( it's a playabitlity thing for me wink ) and so it's NO WONDER "big time" U.S. makers started having their stuff made over there as well. wink
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#2920012 - 04/08/18 08:06 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: whitefang]
Larryz Offline
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My buddy had a Takamine back in the 70's then he went to Ovation. The Takamine sounded very nice, probably better than the Ovation IIRC, but had no electronics. Another buddy has been playing Takamine 12 strings since day one. I'll remember to ask him when he bought his oldest one. He has about 4 or 5 of them. I have never played an easier playing 12 than the ones he has...my son-n-law liked his 12's so much that he found a used one. My 6 string parlor Takamine, was made in Japan and is also an easy player... cool
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#2920152 - 04/09/18 04:46 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: Larryz]
whitefang Offline
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I'm on the fence as far as Ovation goes. The ones I tried out in sores really didn't sound all that good( kinda "tinny"), and now that round back of theirs would compete too much with my round front( grin ), so I'll pass. wink

But the Takamines I've tried were similar models to what you see them country boys playing, with those ugly( IMO) cutaways, and something about them I found uncomfortable in playing them. I suppose there's many who feel the same about many other guitars out there that too, many people like.
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#2920208 - 04/09/18 07:46 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: whitefang]
Larryz Offline
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My buddy loved his Ovation and probably still has it. The volume pot needs to be replaced, but other than that it is good sounding. I can't play it without a strap even when sitting down as it has that big plastic turtle body. His is not the cutaway model. circa '72 +/-...

Later in life I bought my daughter her 1st guitar as she was taking lessons in college. It was an Ovation with the cutaway, slim downed version body, and those drill hole sound holes with decorative wood leaves...her teach thought it was very cool for a 1st guitar and told her that her dad had good taste! She still has it and it still plays very good...circa '98...

so, I can safely say that they hold up pretty well over the years... cool
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#2920289 - 04/09/18 11:31 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: CEB]
DocPate Offline
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Originally Posted By: CEB
My interest are becoming more and more centered on acoustic instruments...


When I first read this I thought I couldn't contribute any new perspective. I'm still not sure I can because my initial thought was Martin guitars since I don't know of any guitar that has a better overall tone, shape, weight and feel. However, I checked with my local acoustic store (Fret Mill) and ran across Bedell guitars. I knew nothing about them but the store had a 1964 Bedell available. Wow! What a great sounding parlor size.

is an

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#2923184 - 04/24/18 03:24 PM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: DocPate]
Mark Schmieder Offline
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I've been on an acoustic craze for years now -- I'm so burnt out on synthesizers especially, but short-scale electric guitars as well.

I like having a variety of them, and still aim to get two more eventually, to flesh out my collections of shapes, sizes, and woods.

If you only have one though, I highly deprecate the "obvious" choice of a dreadnought, as they are almost inevitably boomy and thus unmanageable in the studio and unbalanced in the mix.

It took 35 years and six buys before I finally settled on a dreadnought that I think I can live with. The Eastman E10D is pretty close to a GE version of the Martin D18, and I feel the Red Spruce top and Mahogany body are about the only wood combination capable of a balanced sound on a dread.

I always remind myself of how these instruments came into being, in the age before electronics and when they were competing to be heard over big bands, banjos, mandolins, etc. It was never about ideal expression or versatility but about sheer stage volume.

As I play many styles, I find it best to use different guitars for each, and lately I have done a lot of research and listening regarding string choices and bought a whole slew of different string types that I plan to swap out very soon on different models (e.g. monel, silk, etc.).

As an all-rounder though, I think it's hard to beat an OM or "000" (usually they amount to the same thing), if you switch between finger-style and plectrum playing. Mine is a Martin OM-28 VTS (torrefied Red Spruce top) with Rosewood, the latter being a wood that I am cautious about due to the "boom factor" but this is mitigated by the Red Spruce and the waist shape of an OM vs. a dreadnought.

I also have that wood combination on a parlour "0" size from Eastman, which reminds me a bit of an old Gibson "0" or "00" and is also quite versatile.

The Nick Drake model from Guild, an all-mahogany Made in the USA M-20, is smaller still, and has an amazing dynamic range and expressive scope. It too could serve as an all-purpose guitar.

For more rock-oriented work, heavy playing, even celtic style, I dig the Gibson jumbo series, which I bought in bubinga vs. maple as it tames it a bit while still keeping the big/wide/open sound where each string can be heard distinctly.

Acoustic instruments are each unique, even for the same model. It's hard for me to love an assembly line electric instrument as much.
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#2923185 - 04/24/18 03:33 PM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: Mark Schmieder]
Scott Fraser Offline
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I've never liked dreadnoughts. To me it's an ungainly shape, plus the boominess thing. As a recording engineer they've never recorded quite like I want to hear an acoustic. Thus far I'm preferring the grand auditorium or jumbo shapes, but in the slightly smaller size that Taylor makes. And with cedar tops. But I've never really had a completely comfortable acoustic, one that fits as well as a good archtop electric, for me. Partly it's string tension & action. I just can't hang with anything thicker than .010s, whether on electric or acoustic, & I just fumble around aimlessly with the higher action typical on so many acoustics.
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#2923225 - 04/24/18 08:22 PM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: Scott Fraser]
Caevan O'Shite Offline
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Originally Posted By: Scott Fraser
I've never liked dreadnoughts. To me it's an ungainly shape, plus the boominess thing. As a recording engineer they've never recorded quite like I want to hear an acoustic. Thus far I'm preferring the grand auditorium or jumbo shapes, but in the slightly smaller size that Taylor makes. And with cedar tops. But I've never really had a completely comfortable acoustic, one that fits as well as a good archtop electric, for me. Partly it's string tension & action. I just can't hang with anything thicker than .010s, whether on electric or acoustic, & I just fumble around aimlessly with the higher action typical on so many acoustics.


Personally, I love dreadnoughts and jumbos, even though I play fingerstyle. I also love cedar-topped flat-tops. And I also love heavier strings! 11's on a Les Paul, 13's or 14's on an acoustic... 'S just me.
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#2923261 - 04/25/18 04:42 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: Caevan O'Shite]
whitefang Offline
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Dreadnoughts are pretty common, in fact, I'd say THE most common design of acoustic guitars used over the years. And their sound is so ingrained in country, folk and other genres where acoustic guitars are principally used that I find it odd that there are some long time players that claim NOT to like them. And...

Personally, I've never heard ANY "boominess" attributed to their sound. It always seemed even-handed to me. In fact, to ME, it's the JUMBO shaped axes, like the Gibson J-200 that I feel are "boomy". But then, to each etc., etc., etc.
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#2923271 - 04/25/18 05:56 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: whitefang]
CEB Offline
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I told my luthier/ guitar dealer what I wanted and he said... "You had me until the slotted headstock." My luthier said he seen more broken slotted headstocks on steel string guitars. He doesn't care for them because steel strings put the headstock under more tension than nylons. I'm a nylon string player so I'm just comfortable with the slotted headstock. I never though about there being any strength issues.
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#2923285 - 04/25/18 07:41 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: CEB]
Larryz Offline
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I like the slotted headstock on steel strings. They give the guitar that old Martin 1800's look. I have never worried about breaking mine and I have them on both steel and nylon string acoustics. I think the danger is due more to dropping or banging the guitar than string tension. If you take good care of it, I doubt you'll break the headstock (knock on wood LOL!)... cool

Ps. For strings, I like 10's on my electrics and 11's on my acoustics... cool

Pss. I don't care for dreadnoughts... cool

Psss. I do love cedar tops... cool


Edited by Larryz (04/25/18 07:46 AM)
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#2923286 - 04/25/18 07:45 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: Larryz]
DocPate Offline
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OK, now I've tried everything. My Son-In-Law has a nice classical guitar. Last night we were having dinner at their house and I wanted to try out his classical because I thought the wider neck and nylon strinngs might just work for my arthritic fingers. He brought it in and lo and behold, he had strung it with half nylon and half steel strings. Even though it didn't help with my finger issues, I could manage a few licks and it sounded horrible! But, the guitar did feel good in my hands.

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#2923291 - 04/25/18 08:01 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: DocPate]
Larryz Offline
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@ Doc, I can't play on the classical guitars as the necks are too wide and I'm a thumb-over kind of guy. My Taylor nylons have narrow necks so us non-classical players can get the nylon sound without having a super wide fret-board. The necks on my Taylors are just a tad wider than standard (not nearly as wide as a classical). They are comfortable and easy to get used to. The silver wrapped bass strings are nylon core and just look and feel like steel strings...it takes practice to get a good sound out of nylon guitars and many think they sound dull until they start singing LOL! I could see why you wanted to give one a try with the arthritic fingers... cool


Edited by Larryz (04/25/18 08:02 AM)
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#2923292 - 04/25/18 08:08 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: CEB]
d Offline
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Originally Posted By: CEB
My interest are becoming more and more centered on acoustic instruments. I wonder if it is an age thing or just the nature of the work environment .... lower stage levels, In Ear Monitors, etc....

Something my collection lacks is a good traditional steel string acoustic. My one steel string is an Ovation I used on the road in the 80s. It worked great through PAs compared to other guitars at the time but it is difficult to play sitting.

I like slotted headstock tuners. I think I want a smaller body guitar like a parlor. I'm mainly a finger picking stylist and I think the smaller guitar would be easier to play in front of the computer where I do most my work at home.

I'm surprised yer considerations didn't extend to the yer current musical interests. Most players have a periodic shift/drift of interests both in listening & playing explorations.
Those might lead to changes in gear.

I would suggest one be careful of letting the reverse become what leads you.
If yer playing &/or listening becomes directed primarily by what's comfortable, your focus will be more narrow than if you consciously keep expanding in both listening & technique.
For me, the gear is always a lesser consideration. While there are definite uses for various items, I subscribe to the often floated idea that a player's sound is in the fingers & the flip-side/corrolary notion that there may be multiple paths to the same destination or result.
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#2923294 - 04/25/18 08:20 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: Larryz]
DocPate Offline
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+1 Larry on the dull sound.

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#2923367 - 04/25/18 02:11 PM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: DocPate]
Mark Schmieder Offline
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Larry, a lot of modern classical guitars (and flamenco guitars) are breaking tradition with slightly narrower necks. I had the same problem, but now have a lovely Bulgarian-made Kremona model that has a very comfortable neck that nevertheless feels "classical".

Interesting comments about cedar-topped Taylor Grand Auditoriums as I sold my mid-1990's model recently due to how poorly it recorded and mixed. Too imbalanced, compressed sounding, and challenging in a dense mix. I thought it was just me, or my miking, so took years to decide to part with it.

Everything is contextual, and that's why those who work in many styles and genres usually need more than one acoustic guitar. Boom is going to be perceived relative to what it is or isn't masking. For solo acoustic guitar, it can sometimes be beneficial to give more "body" to the sound. That's just one example.
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#2923398 - 04/25/18 04:40 PM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: Mark Schmieder]
Larryz Offline
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There are others too Mark, Godin comes to mind, that put out a narrow neck nylon that sound great. I have a Taylor nylon with a spruce top and a Taylor nylon with a cedar top. They both sound great. The spruce has a lot more bright treble while the cedar has a nice warm sound. My Takamine parlor guitar has a cedar top which I really like. My favorite is my Taylor 416 limited edition with a Cedar top and walnut back and sides.

I'm not really into recording and not a good source of information, but when I did take a line out of the PA to my looper, the cedar top 416 sounded very nice on playback. I never got around to recording the others but they would probably all sound good if they sound good live coming out of my PA speakers.

I like both cedar and spruce tops, but I prefer cedar as it's a little more warm and jazzy than the bright acoustic sound most acoustic players prefer...I'm glad they came out with the narrow neck nylons. cool
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#2923399 - 04/25/18 04:47 PM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: DocPate]
Larryz Offline
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Originally Posted By: DocPate
+1 Larry on the dull sound.


I read a bad review Doc on one of my Taylor nylon guitars by a kid who played one at a guitar store (and was not a nylon player). His comment was it sounded dull and he would not recommend one. I got a kick out of that. It is a very nice guitar that really sounds great especially plugged in. Cedar top with rosewood back and sides and not exactly cheap LOL! The reviews by experienced players are very positive...nylons remind me of flatwounds until you practice with them for awhile. cool
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#2923439 - 04/26/18 04:21 AM Re: I'm more into acoustic instruments & Parlor Guitars [Re: Larryz]
whitefang Offline
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+1 on the wider necks on "classical" guitars. I once(a long time ago) picked up and tried out my buddy's old classical guitar and noticed that too. But also I noticed other guys with nylon stringed "parlor" guitars that those didn't have much wider (if at all) necks.

And too, I've never heard many complain about tension problems concerning slotted headstocks and steel strings. I don't personally know anyone who HAS one, but in all the years on this forum, I've never read a complaint about it.
Whitefang
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