a great sounding guitar

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Thu Apr 02, 2009 2:08 am

Oh and my Alhambra is aging perfectly. Again though great sound is relative to opinion. However, most top line guitars generally have the better sound and will improve with age, its a case of keep trying various ones out, also if you have friends with older guitars check them out as well to get an idea.

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Tue Apr 14, 2009 3:18 pm

Picking the "right" guitar is a never ending search. I suggest you visit as many guitar shops as you can and play as many brands of guitar as you can. That way you will start to appreciate and learn the differences in sound and playability of different brands and models of guitar. I actually find this a lot of fun. I'll spend many a Saturday visiting a guitar shop just to play their guitars.

When i first started i could tell there were differences in sound, but I couldn't appreciate the more expensive guitars, i can now.

For a warmer sound use phosphor bronze strings rather than bronze (80%/20%). The silk and steel strings are even more mellow. Of course old strings are more mellow than new strings, which is why I generally don't like new strings for the first few days. Also beware that most guitar shops will have old strings on their guitars.

From bright to mellow: Taylor, Martin, Guild, Gibson. Some people say Gibsons sound dead, I disagree. Epiphone makes a cheaper Gibson copy.

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Fri Apr 17, 2009 3:34 pm

All great advice but did anyone mention playing a little forward away from the bridge (toward the fretboard) to get a mellower tone? Electric guitars are set up to take advantage of this.

As far as guitars aging it is a fact. I bought a new Larrivee with an Englemann spruce top and it sounded terrible for a couple of years. I was so disappointed but then it started to open up and now it sounds fabulous. In my experience Englemann sounds tighter than Sitka spruce new and takes longer to open up. Cedar is mellower from the start. And a laminated top guitar won't open up at all, avoid them at all costs!!

Finally, you can't go wrong with a Seagull guitar. I think they are the best value on the market for real quality at a low price. I don't like the sound of cedar topped guitars but they make a really nice one for

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Fri Apr 17, 2009 10:02 pm

I agree with BigBear. I have a Seagull with solid spruce top and mahogany sides and back. With the sides and back they sandwich wild red cherry between two pieces of mahogany. I love the sound of this guitar, it is a mini-jumbo so it has a nice full sound. I can't wait for the top to open up, then the sound should be unbelievable. It is an acoustic/electric with cutaway and the price was only $750. I highly recommend Seagull guitars for quality, sound and price.

Keep Playing

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Fri Apr 17, 2009 11:49 pm

I have a Seagull S6. It is an older version but the sound is amazing. I paid $100! Sounds better the allot of higher priced Guitars.

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Sat May 02, 2009 2:42 pm

In an earlier post, "rcsnydley" commented on aging and I'd like to echo those thoughts.

Over 40 years ago I played (and still have) a Guild MK ll Classical guitar. I played that guitar almost daily for the past 40 years. In surfing eBay I saw another Guild MK ll that was listed as sitting in a closet for years and looked "Almost As New". Mine had dings and scratches from use, but was and is in perfect playing condition. I purchased the one on eBay using the escrow function just because. The escrow function allows you a week to see if it is as perfect as the listing states.

Anyway when the guitar arrived it was "Almost As New" just like the listing stated and I did buy it for around $200. In checking the serial number, it is was less than 100 guitars away from the one I had purchased so many years before. Now here is the point. No matter how a guitar sounds today, that same guitar WILL get better with age if it is cared for lovingly and correctly. When I play the one that had been sitting in the closet for so many years and then played the same passage on my stage worn friend... the one I played year after year sounded sweeter and sang longer after the last note than the one that had been in stasis for 40 years.

With all that being said... do not discount a previously owned guitar, as long it has been treated with TLC. You will pay less... and it might sound sweeter and play easier than that shiny new model.


Rev Kate

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Tue May 05, 2009 3:05 am

Cedar guitars are without question, the most mellow sounding of all timbers. They are not for the careless however, as cedar does not stand up to bumps. The timber scratches and dings so easily.
To answer that part of the question about changing strings to obtain a mellow sound.
The answer is possibly yes ( to some degree), but that will depend upon what you are currently using.
Some strings are much brighter sounding. Thicker gauges can alter the sound. Even flat wounds will have an effect that will please some, and disappoint others.
It becomes a matter of trial and error and personal taste

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Mon May 11, 2009 5:21 pm

It wasn't long ago when Tacomas were built in Tacoma. My son-in-law worked there for awhile and left when they sold out to Fender.

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Mon May 11, 2009 5:59 pm

I have a Seagull S6 Ceder top and it sounds great, just what you are looking for. I have tried several different strings on it and there is a bit of change, you will have to find what is right for you. Not sure where your located but with them being made in Quebec Canada there are allot out my way. Good luck!


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Mon May 11, 2009 6:15 pm

My Olympia OMC1CE Cedar top is, without a doubt,my "go to" guitar (until I get a real Tacoma!)And it was cheap from craigslist for 130! And I just traded my Fender F65 that I have had since '79 for another Olympia, spruce top this time, because of the sound and playability. I do like the sound of cedar top Seagulls. Cedar tops to my ear and playing style are the best for me. Everyone just has to find that "right" guitar. It has taken me 30 yrs.
Later, Steve

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