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Old 09-11-2012, 04:56 PM   #1
Knackworst1
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Cedar vs Spruce

Hi

I wanna know, whats the main difference between cedar and spruce when it comes to acoustic tops?
Most acoustic guitars used in indie and pop are spruce, but I was told cedar is'nt bad either...
What do you know about them?

Thanks in advance
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Old 09-12-2012, 02:29 AM   #2
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Old 09-12-2012, 03:22 AM   #3
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Cedar - warm
Spruce - bright
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Old 09-12-2012, 10:26 AM   #4
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Captaincranky's article is a really good read if you want a very full answer.

To give you a short answer...

Cedar tends to be much warmer in sound and does the tone starts to break down when you play it really hard.

Spruce is a tighter grained wood and tends to be much brighter in sound. It can take more intense playing before the sound starts to deteriorate.
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Old 09-13-2012, 05:51 AM   #5
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I find a cedar top guitar sounds as good as it ever will, whereas spruce tends to get better as it ages. Spruce tends to react more to your playing (ie the different ways in which you play a note) and cedar gives a more even balance to your playing.
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Old 09-13-2012, 11:23 AM   #6
Knackworst1
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But why is cedar not as common used as spruce?
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Old 09-13-2012, 11:32 AM   #7
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In steel string guitars? I would say spruce is more used because it suits the playstyle much more. Cedar is a beautiful, warm sounding wood, but it doesn't take to flat picking as well as spruce. More preference than anything else, i'd say.

For classical guitars, cedar is used more.
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Old 09-13-2012, 04:47 PM   #8
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K thanks, do you know any song played on a cedar western guitar?
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Old 09-13-2012, 05:26 PM   #9
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Any song in the world you want to play. It really doesn't make a difference what top wood you're using.
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Old 09-14-2012, 06:51 PM   #10
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I see, back and side and shape are the main tone makers, right?
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Old 09-14-2012, 07:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Knackworst1
I see, back and side and shape are the main tone makers, right?

Back and Side shape? Like Dreadnaught, 000, 00 etc?

That's a huge factor, but the top is also very important.

There are many debates on now much the back and sides come in to play, but the two most important are the shape and top. Nothing beats trying the guitar out for your self as your hands will shape the over all sound produce. You may like the sound of a 000 cedar top guitar on youtube, but when you get it in your hands and play it could be completely wrong for you.
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Old 09-14-2012, 07:57 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Knackworst1
I see, back and side and shape are the main tone makers, right?
How on earth did you arrive at this conclusion?

The guitar's soundboard is a predominant factor in the sound of the instrument.

The back and sides, as well as the shape, do add quite a bit of coloration, and alter the frequency response. (Bigger body equals more bass, and a lower fundamental resonant frequency).

With that said, Ovations still sound like guitars, do they not?

If the B & S were doing all the tonal shaping, they wouldn't.

So, the soundboard, and its attendant bracing structure is producing the majority of a guitar's tonal character.
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Old 09-18-2012, 07:40 AM   #13
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Cedar tends to be darker/mellower in sound, and Spruce is brighter....being very general. I don't think one is used more than the other, I would say it is pretty even split in classical guitars.
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