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Acoustic Guitars

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Bushfire, Jul 6, 2005.

  1. Now, don't kill me but in addition to playin' bass, I want to learn guitar (and piano. Shut up, I like playin' music :D ) and was thinking about picking an acoustic up, but really not sure what to look for, and was wondering if any of you guys know anything about acoustics, and the pricing I'll be looking at.

    I.e, stuff like:
    • Steel vs Nylon strings
    • Size (I'm 6 foot 2-ish and a heavy build, big hands, leaning towards full size)
    • 12 stringers (what good are they?)
    • Does type of wood make a difference to sound?
    • And what price do you reckon I could pick one up for (not a lot to work with)
  2. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    You might want to consider a classical. I'm not as big as you (probably 3 or 4 inches shorter, actually!) but I find the feel of a classical neck far easier to adjust to intially and overall more comfortable feeling. It's wider than a regular guitar neck and significantly thicker, the wider spacing on the nylon strings feels great.

    The nylon string aspect also makes it a bit easier to play on the higher strings -- I've never been a fan of the feel of steel/bronze string acoustics when playing on the plain (B and high E) strings, and the sound just seems nicer and fuller on the nylon.

    To be honest, I'd love to get a classical guitar and a big ol' Epiphone jazzbox hollowbody. That's a bit far away though (got to pay off a DB, buy a bunch of stuff for it, and a new BG first.)
  3. Oh, so what's the difference between a regular acoustic and a classical? I just assumed they were one and the same. Is is just the size of the neck?


    Dec 1, 2004
    Asheville NC
    Classical has nylon strings, the neck is wider, and the body is usually smaller. Although I agree that the wider spacing might be more comfortable to make the transition from bass to g@#tar with, I think in the long run a regular steel string acoustic will fit into more playing situations in the future. They tend to be louder, the tone is alot brighter, and depending on what kind of music you're playing the steel string is alot more traditional. Once you get used to the neck it'll be fine. Like any acoustic instrument the woods used have a large bearing on the sound. It really comes down to how much you want to spend. You might want to check out Blueridge guitars. They're made in Asia but I've heard a ton of good things about them for the money, which is considerably less than most decent american made guitars. They're based on Martin designs and have gotten alot of great reviews. Of course, you could just bite the bullet and buy a Martin....how much can you spend?
  5. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002

    You shouldn't have much trouble after some practice time. I noodle on an old Peavey Raptor I (strat copy, basically) and the spacing/plain strings issues are completely moot (I've actually started doing a bit of DT on it...;))

    I've played a number of Blueridge acoustics instore, and a friend of mine/former guitarist in our band (which has long since disbanded) owns a beautiful Blueridge he got for under $1K Canadian. Best setup guitar I've ever seen, especially after I convinced him to try out Thomastik strings on it. I love playing it -- the tone is good, the feel is *great*, and it looks gorgeous (abalone purfing, binding, fretboard inlays, and soundhole inlays.)


    Dec 1, 2004
    Asheville NC
    You can get a mid level Blueridge on the 'Bay for $400-600. For a great sounding guitar that you won't outgrow these things are definitely worth it. Some of my bluegrass picker friends down here in NC have them and really dig em. Most of them own Martins too. But who wants to take a pre war martin to an outdoor festival or some jam. I've A/B'd the Blueridges with some Martins and although of course they're not the same, the blueridges can hold their own. And for 2-10k $ less, that's pretty sweet.
  7. Eli M.

    Eli M. Life's like a movie, write your own ending

    Jul 24, 2004
    New York, NY
    I would say, if you're first learning the guitar, get a 6-string. It will probably fit into a lot more situations.

    I consider a 12-string a specialty instrument, and that's why I don't own one. Maybe if I end up getting work as a guitarist (very unlikely) or if I start doing a lot of recording (more likely) I might get one.

    Also, if you can, get an acoustic-electric. This is not a must, but it's a great option to have.
  8. I'm not a big fan of classical acoustics. I dont even really like to consider them guiitars :), they are, but a completely different animal... If I were you I would stick to a traditional acoustic(steel strings).

    Washburn is a good place to look. get a solid top, whether it be spruce(bright), cedar(slightly bassyer) or whatever. Dont get Select Spruce or anything, those are laminated tops... they are cheaper, but utter crap, even for learning on. Go to a guitar store and talk to an experienced guy about the differences between classical and traditional acoustic, I think he'll suggest you get a traditional as well.

    Washburn, Ibanez (AW100 is a cheap and good starter(check ebay round 250 w/ a case)), Takamine..... all good well priced instruments.
  9. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    I would recommend looking into Garrison guitars. They have a glass fiber frame that is very tough. But the great thing about this is that all the bracing is one piece, and it resonates very nicely. Another thing is, they build with all solid woods otherwise. No plywood. They are on par with much more expensive guitars, and they are made in Canada, too!
  10. I probably have between 100 (optimistic) and 50 (almost definately), new zealand dollars, so if suggesting anything about pricing and ebay, just half the price and say http://www.trademe.co.nz :D

    Geez, I didn't expect so many replies, this is after all, talkbass...
  11. Okay, did some number crunching and have 70 nzd to work with. (that's _roughly_ 140 usd)(very roughly)
  12. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Yep, I've always had a pair of sixers, and I had a twelve for a while. I loved to play it (very rought on the fretting hand) and it sounded great, but I never really NEEDED it.
  13. TheNerdBass


    Jun 30, 2005
    Detroit, MI
    12 stringers have a different sound, more middle eastern music, more twang if you will...
  14. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Fuller as well. It plays twice as many notes as you fret.
  15. Mmmm, yeah, that would be great, but boy does it drive the price up. And for some of the prices you guys are quoting, I could get a cheap brand new electric+amp package (for about 260 nzd) The idea of an acousitic is to keep it on the cheap. But yeah, what can you do on an acoustic that you cant on an electric (or vice versa)?
  16. Ethon


    Jan 25, 2003
    Akron, Ohio
    Any suggestions on a good wideneck non-classical acoustic? I know its probably just all in my chord-hand technique, but I always seem to pinch the higher string on a lot of chords
  17. Mental Octopus

    Mental Octopus

    May 24, 2003
    anyone ever hear of Seagull guitars? i think theyre made in Canada...but they were pretty cheap and sounded incredible for the money...wish i had one...but i just have a cheap ibanez that sounds fine. i would reccomend getting something really cheap for now...because who knows if youre gonna like having it around for a long time if you just want to fiddle around with it.
  18. Bard2dbone


    Aug 4, 2002
    Arlington TX
    Seagull Guitars may be inexpensive, but they're not cheap. They are pretty good quality instruments. I can't love the shorter scale lengths that they use. But they are well made, and play well, other than scale-length wise.

    I am also a fan of Breedlove Guitars Atlas series. They are a bit high for your budget, but good.
  19. DaveBeny


    Mar 22, 2000
    London, UK
    Can't go wrong with anything by Yamaha IME.

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