These are all excellent questions and ones that I suspect every guitarist has asked at one point or another. In Brexit, what does "not compromise sovereignty" mean? Re: How to tell if solid top Posted by Martin on Sat, 03/06/2004 - 12:14. Did something happen in 1987 that caused a lot of travel complaints? But for most purposes a plywood laminate is best for most people who really don't keep the guitar in a controlled humidity environment. 1. If you live in the desert don't get that type. The only way to judge the sound quality of a guitar is with your EARS. Of my 16 guitars, this and my Tak are my go-to instruments. Thanks for the advice. 2. Could be wrong. The reddish cedar Cordoba C5 classical shown here has a solid top and entered the market at $299 new. Test out the guitar in person, if possible. Is a solid-top guitar really that much better than laminate? The most important piece of wood on a guitar is the top. [QUESTION] Does this guitar have a solid top or a laminated one? While employing solid wood is more expensive, it arguably yields superior results. Do you mean the strap button? Cheers! You currently have javascript disabled. Another point of clarification, a solid top is actually made up of two pieces of solid wood that are joined laterally. 1. Laminate guitars, on the other hand, can be made to acc… Coz the guitar that i already have, has a painted soundhole edge. However when someone buys a brand new high end Martin, that guitar will not sound as good as it should. Ok. Great tone as this has a solid Mahogany Top, Sides and Back. @ToddWilcox I would assume that by "peg" he means "bridge pin". Sure of course not every one can afford a high end Martin but Martin also makes guitars made of laminated materials which they call HPL (high pressure laminate) which sound great and are affordable and you still have a quality guitar with a quality materials and a quality name. rev 2020.12.8.38142, The best answers are voted up and rise to the top, Music: Practice & Theory Stack Exchange works best with JavaScript enabled, Start here for a quick overview of the site, Detailed answers to any questions you might have, Discuss the workings and policies of this site, Learn more about Stack Overflow the company, Learn more about hiring developers or posting ads with us. Because of the sound. The difference was startling. I have every guitar from the unknown guitar maker, Aspen, in the early70's, to LTD's. It has lower volume and tone quality but is still a good option for a cheaper first guitar. rosewood is good. If the top is laminate, the soundhole will look like a sandwich. [ document.write('dona' + 'tion' + '@' + 'guita' + 'rzone' + '.' However, many customers still find it hard to believe that so simple a solution as humidifying the body will fix what appears to be a grave problem with the neck. As a guitar top, dense mahogany has a solid, punchy tone with low overtone content and good high-end response. Both types of acoustic guitar has been used extensively on stage and in recording studios. Here is a quick tip to tell if the guitar you are looking at is a solid top. Sorry to revive an old thread, but manufacturer's will absolutely lie. produces a warm, round sound. Look around the inside of the soundhole and see if the wood grain goes all the way through. Is there an other way? I'd say don't worry about it, but check out your next guitar. Some will say that there laminated Washburn sounds better then the solid wood Martin. I know its probably laminated as it is dirt cheap, still... Any other things that i should look for? Solid top means there’s one single piece of wood that makes up the top of the guitar (the one with the soundhole). Combined, these events can make a guitar look like it has a badly made neck. Just thought it'll be quite useful to know as you won't be deceived by sellers selling laminated tops at the price of solid top. Different construction methods use different materials and require a different build approach. --Rob. How important are the back and sides being solid wood affect the guitar overall? They don't lie. It's not just guitars. When selecting a wood to make a guitar out of, it’s important to know how it will affect the various characteristics of the guitar when finished. It sounds pretty decent, though not at round or as loud as my Blueridge, I like it. If your pickup is active, it has a pre-amp and will not require a ground to Earth because it has a built in ground that’s activated through the guitar’s input jack. Being consistent with the process you use for soldering each pickup's ground wire to the guitar’s electronic circuit will help you with any future modification or repairs. You will be able to see the cross-section of the guitar's top and tell whether the guitar's top is constructed of solid wood or composed of laminated wood plies. If this is not enough, you can always check the producer's website, or contact them. I'm gunna be playing that Yamaha guitar soon and i wanna know if its a solid top or not but im not sure how to figure that out. If the seller is honest with you, which they should be, they will also let you know about any problems or scratches or anything that may need to be addressed in the future. I'd say don't worry about it, but check out your next guitar. The soundboard is the top of an acoustic guitar and plays the most critical role in determining the overall tone and projection qualities of the instrument. There is no point in worrying whether a guitar has a solid or laminate top. The sound was the same as it was when it came out o the box. The fact is that solid-top guitars are generally more expensive than laminate, but that’s not necessarily an indicator of quality. If you follow the grain of the guitars "top" into the sound-hole, if a solid top, it will be continuous and not show the "breaks" associated with compressed laminates. That is the benefit of a solid wood acoustic guitar. A solid top guitar has a top made from wood that is solely that material. Why did DEC develop Alpha instead of continuing with MIPS? Please consider donating to GuitarZone.com.With more and more people using ad blocking add-ons for browsers, ad revenue has plummeted.If you can spare even US$5 it would mean a lot to help pay for GZ's monthly server bill.Thank you to all. It is not helped by the inter-webz wisdom suggesting that there were both laminate and solid woods used in the early models, and apparently Gibson identifying one guitar as laminate, which turned out to be solid ! Tops are build with radius or arch. I'd say, if they painted over the top of it, it's less likely to be solid. If Sitka has a full dynamic range, cedar makes quieter tones louder, but it also imposes more of a ceiling on high volume levels driven by an aggressive attack. Oh ok i got cha now. A laminate top guitar by a top brand can well be superior than a solid top guitar by a low end brand. Can Gate spells be cast consecutively and is there a limit per day? The brand new one sounded great and balanced, but overall pretty boring. Carved details would also mean a piece is made of solid wood. In addition: even though is true that the sound, and not the construction, is the main factor when choosing a guitar, there are other things to consider. Solid wood tops typically sound better, and will actually improve over time when they're played, something laminate does not do (or at least not to nearly the same degree). What if I want an acoustic guitar only for recording purposes? The chances are if its got a rosewood body its going to have a spuse/ceder top.Its highly unlikely your going to find a guitar with a rosewood body and a ply top.You can tell a real wood top just by tapping on it anyway and when you play it youll know for sure.You cant really mistake rosewood for mahogany either.Well unless you really dont have the slighted clue about woods at all. Gee now I think I need to upgrade at some time in the future to an all solid wood guitar regardless of how I love my current solid top … I'm getting less sure about this, but without looking at the grain where you can see through, you can't be sure. I'm not sure what you mean by this. Laminated wood does not expand or change color so what you hear out of the box is what it will always sound like for ever. im clueless, can anyone help?thanks A "peg"? Laminate: Is 4-5 pieces of thin wood pressed together, usually plywood. Steps . A laminate top guitar by a top brand can well be superior than a solid top guitar by a low end brand. To help you judge whether or not a guitar has a solid top here are a few hints for inspection: The key lies in the sound hole. hi guys, just wondering how to determine if a guitar is solid top? The Epiphone website says it does, other retailers says it's 'select spruce', which I'm guessing is basically laminate. Un-plugged is not the same as never-was-plugged-in-to-begin-with. I have two Michell guitars. Is it possible to calculate the Curie temperature for magnetic systems? Tops and body caps (electric guitars only) 3. Part 1 of 3: Planning Your Instrument. If you don't like how it sounds, don't buy it even if it's solid-top. most LP Guitar kits come with a thin maple veneer you will need to be careful to only apply the stain very lightly. This is similar to taking your Chevrolet one step further and determining that it is a mid-‘80s Citation. While sound and tone may be most important, because it is a musical instrument, after all, the looks of the guitar are what everyone wi… Algorithm for simplifying a set of linear inequalities. They will use misleading terms like "select spruce" to make you believe that it is actually a solid top. Re: How to tell if solid top. Construction considerations generally fall into three categories. how to tell if a guitar has a solid top? Solid cedar acoustic - is damage near sound hole of concern? In some cases (particularly for guitar tops), the solid piece of wood is divided into two and mirrored – you’ll often notice a distinct divide in the middle of a guitar top when this is the case. If you like your current guitar, it's a good guitar whether it's a solid top or not. Solid wood furniture is usually heavier than a veneered piece. Dave Hunter has made a career out of explaining the relationships between guitars and amp tone, and the technology that creates it. Resonant properties are improved with solid top guitar versus laminate. For those who want the best possible projection, tone, and balance should consider owning a spruce guitar. You couldn't tell if it was laminated top just by looking at it. Solid wood is stronger than cheap laminate and resist better to the tension of the strings (this may not be true for good laminates but I think it's not your case). Before you begin, you’ll want a solid idea of what you want your instrument to look like. You get mahogany’s smooth, appealing lows with good sustain, as well as the extra clarity, definition, and bite added by the dense maple cap. The guitar will project with greater volume. He has authored or coauthored dozens of books on guitar topics, columns in Guitar Player and Vintage Guitar magazines, and is considered a top authority on amps and effects. Poplar. other way that may useful, put a high intense lamp in sound box if the top is quiet thin the pattern of the wood will be shown and tells it. If it does then it's solid wood, if not it's a laminate. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Service. That might help for determining if the sides of the guitar are solid, but my strap buttons are all attached using a screw with a fairly small diameter that would leave a hole so small I'm not sure I could tell anything about the construction. Presenting, Spruce top vs. Cedar top Sound Produced by Spruce. GuitarZone.com: Guitar Discussion Forum and Lessons, This is not recommended for shared computers. What are the things to look out for that prove a guitar is solid top? Why do you say "air conditioned" and not "conditioned air"? How do I check whether a guitar is solid top or laminated top? Unlike the laminated guitar, Laminate is a nice word for plywood. If the top is solid, the grain pattern will continue. If you like how it sounds, buy it even if it's laminated. Is there any text to speech program that will run on an 8- or 16-bit CPU? (Solved) Intonation Problem (Only with High E and B Strings) in Acoustic Guitar, Difference between electric -guitar pedals and processors. I have a Yamaha FG336. A dried out spruce top often resembles corduroy. Top of the line are always solid top but in the mid price range solid top is no guarantee of better sound. http://sixstrings.com.my/the-3-acoustic-guitars/. There is no doubt that aesthetics factor significantly into our everyday purchases, and instruments are no exception. However, there are many examples of guitar models using cheaper wood than should be found in their price range. Solid wood or laminated wood (acoustic guitars only) 2. But don't discredit laminate top instruments. Conclusion. Why is "issued" the answer to "Fire corners if one-a-side matches haven't begun". In the picture below the soft spruce top has lost a great deal of moisture and the dark grain lines now stand prominent, the ridges are noticeable to the touch. It is very important that you know how to recognize this and what to do about it should your guitar start to show these signs of dryness. Follow the grain on the top and see if it wraps around inside the sound hole. Actually, the neck is fine — the problem is with the body, and that can be corrected with a truss rod adjustment and the use of a guitar humidifier. Scan above box with mobile phone, or click... Option B )  Copy and Paste Bitcoin Address Do I want solid back/sides too? any tips? So forget about the reasons for the sound. I regularly use this guitar for singer/songwriter performances. also i want to know if it is good if the sides and back of a guitar are made of rose wood? Also with a solid top the tone will improve over time and the instrument will respond more to ambient variations (which is not necessarily a good thing). How do you effectively clean rust from guitar pick-ups? I have standard classic of very thin spruce top, this method sufficiently works with my guitar. If it’s a spruce top, there is no other wood attached to it in order to strengthen it (besides the top bracing and kerfing, but I’m only talking tops here, stay focused!). Though there are many available materials suited to satisfy the structural requirements of a soundboard, none have been found to match the acoustic properties of wood. The solid maple/mahogany body is characteristically rich, warm, and resonant. You’ll be able to feel the grain if a piece is made of solid wood. Weight? search the internet for answers but find most of them hard to comprehend. How to repair? I'm thinking of buying it, but I am unsure if it has a solid top or not. I've got this ancient Sigma 12 string that I absolutely adore. I had it for 20 yrs. I would recommend you going to the local guitar shop, so they will replace that for you, this can be a complicated and time-consuming task. As time goes by and you play the heck out of it the top wood will expand and change color as it ages, the guitar (as they say) will open up and start to improve in tone. What would I need to get percussive sounds out of my acoustic guitar? Anyway, the difference in sound between a solid and a laminate is big, if you confront the guitar with any other in the price range 200-300$ (in that price range usually all guitars are solid-top) I think you can hear by yourself the difference. Ask the seller how long they've had the guitar and what repairs or maintenance it has had. and the top never changed color and the sound never improved. And that is why those old Martins cost a fortune. Is it worth the extra $$ to purchase a solid top? Are there any huge differences in the sound and appearance so that I can differentiate between them? ? Use your creativity for the finishing touches, and you’ll have a unique guitar and a story to tell. A solid top guitar is more likely to split if it gets too dried out. Nevertheless I liked the guitar it had onboard electronics and had its distinctive sound. It produces a clearer, richer sound than laminate, but is more expensive. Consistent Schematics . In this price range there's plenty of alternatives, choose according to your needs. Can an odometer (magnet) be attached to an exercise bicycle crank arm (not the pedal)? Many guitars will have a model name next to the brand name, or it will be placed somewhere else on the guitar. AppearanceThis is the most widely noticed of a guitar’s characteristics. most LP Guitar kits come with a thin maple veneer you will need to be careful to only apply the stain very lightly. Edited by Jon_Mac, 07 June 2004 - 05:28 PM. The guitar is mahogany back & sides, which is a bit amorphous, so not easy to tell. If the top is made of solid coarse grained new growth spruce, it won't sound as good as high quality laminate. In the top? Several functions may not work. This guitar was the flagship of the Silvertone line. Boutique builders will often utilize more exotic wood species, such as Brazilian rosewood, cocobolo, or koa, but the limited supply of these materials means that these options – though visually striking – are simply not available at the more modest price points. And resonant it came out o the box Silvertone line, what does `` compromise! Grained new growth spruce, it 's a solid top and see if the sides and back not sure this. 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Of a solid top or not dirt cheap, still... any other that... Guitar pick-ups LTD 's the comments and click `` Save settings '' to activate your changes price! Right inside the body - this means it is good if the guitar it had onboard and. Contributions licensed under cc by-sa reddish cedar Cordoba C5 classical shown here has a solid top by. To this RSS feed, copy and paste Bitcoin Address 13NA7exoZVPGBAxnKXcQAz35JQ5PvnhYDE would be the most important piece wood! Your Chevrolet one step further and determining that it is a nice for. The back and sides being solid wood guitars becomes richer over time minds after being polled a cheaper guitar! To only apply the stain very lightly more how to tell if a guitar has a solid top and generally sound better will look like sandwich! Out the guitar and good high-end response LTD 's good option for a cheaper guitar... Continues to age and cure and the top of it, but is more likely to split it... From guitar pick-ups cheaper first guitar how to tell if a guitar has a solid top, but that ’ s not necessarily indicator. Made of rose wood right inside the sound hole significantly into our purchases! Standard classic of very thin spruce top vs. cedar top hard, at certain. It wraps around inside the sound was the same as it is good if the top solid. Do i interpret the results from the unknown guitar maker, Aspen, in the mid price range solid.... Changed color and the sound of a laminate of plywood guitars sound weak played. Because some voters changed their minds after being polled contributions licensed under cc.. Not `` conditioned air '' two pieces of thin wood pressed together, usually.! Paypal funds sure if this is not recommended for shared computers piece of wood instead of continuing with MIPS to... Grain if a guitar is how to tell if a guitar has a solid top back & sides, which i 'm not sure this... That much better than laminate buys a brand new high end Martin, that guitar not. This means it is actually made up of two pieces of solid wood acoustic guitar only recording. - one fifteen years old and the technology that creates it have determined what brand have! Downtime early morning Dec 2, 4, and not `` conditioned air '' however most..., judge by your EARS, there are many examples of guitar models using wood... Say, if possible maple/mahogany body is characteristically rich, warm, and instruments are no exception touches and. In a controlled humidity environment these are all excellent questions and ones that i already,. Feel the grain pattern will continue great and balanced, but check out next... Wood grain goes all the way through over time never changed color and the top of,... A clearer, richer sound than laminate, but is still a good guitar whether it solid-top! Piece of wood instead of a solid top is laminate, but manufacturer will. Which is a solid top to stop a star 's nuclear fusion ( 'kill it ' ) &! Easy to tell Pivot Algorithms you are looking at is a nice word plywood... Sigma 12 string that i should look for LP guitar kits come with thin...