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Old 09-20-2012, 02:15 AM   #1
ZOSO <(")
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guitar wood question

im thinking about getting a guitar made from Warmoth.com ans was wondering what is the best wood to use for the body?
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Old 09-20-2012, 02:58 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by ZOSO <(")
im thinking about getting a guitar made from Warmoth.com ans was wondering what is the best wood to use for the body?

There should be an accurate descriptions of the woods on the warmoth website. Also, there is no "best wood", only different woods. If you want to sound like a strat(for example), then you'd probably want to look into alder, for a Les Paul, look into mahogany, ect.. Durability, weight, and looks are other factors to consider as well.
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Old 09-20-2012, 03:11 AM   #3
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thanks!
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Old 09-20-2012, 03:39 AM   #4
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I prefer basswood its fairly cheap and light and has good sound to it but it is very soft so if you are abusive on bodys don't use basswood.
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Old 09-20-2012, 04:02 AM   #5
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I would avoid basswood if you're wanting to go for quality. It's one of the cheaper tonewoods that you often find on very cheap or budget guitars.

I'd say if you want bright go Alder. If you want warm go Mahogany.
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Old 09-20-2012, 05:02 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Beauty/Broken
I would avoid basswood if you're wanting to go for quality. It's one of the cheaper tonewoods that you often find on very cheap or budget guitars


I'm not an expert by any means, but like all woods, you can get good quality, as well as bad. You can't just say it's all bad and should be avoided because it's it's used of a lot of cheaper guitars. It just so happens to be readily available and cheap. There are also a lot of very cheap guitars make from alder and mahogany.

From what I know, the basswood Warmoth uses is generally very good. Assuming you like the sound of it, I would only say avoid it if you have a tendancy to beat your bodies up a bit, as it's very soft. If not, it's worth bearing in mind.
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Old 09-20-2012, 07:20 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beauty/Broken
I would avoid basswood if you're wanting to go for quality. It's one of the cheaper tonewoods that you often find on very cheap or budget guitars.

I'd say if you want bright go Alder. If you want warm go Mahogany.


So Ibanez JEM has a cheap wood? I don't think so...

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Originally Posted by Carl6661
I'm not an expert by any means, but like all woods, you can get good quality, as well as bad. You can't just say it's all bad and should be avoided because it's it's used of a lot of cheaper guitars. It just so happens to be readily available and cheap. There are also a lot of very cheap guitars make from alder and mahogany.

From what I know, the basswood Warmoth uses is generally very good. Assuming you like the sound of it, I would only say avoid it if you have a tendancy to beat your bodies up a bit, as it's very soft. If not, it's worth bearing in mind.


I'm not an expert either, but you're right. There is cheap alder, cheap mahogany (like nato) and cheap basswood. Then there's expensive out of each. I don't exactly know how the pricing goes and why it goes like that, maybe rarity and then the amount of work needed to be done for the blank. Some woods are easier to work on than others. That's what I know.
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Old 09-20-2012, 07:48 AM   #8
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My Ibanez Satriani JS2400 also is made of basswood... it has a darkish, rich sound and is not 'cheap' if that's the sound you want.
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Old 09-20-2012, 08:11 AM   #9
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Pickups + Electronics + Processing + Amplification > Wood

If you're talking about sound. If you want bright, go single coil. If you want warm, go humbucker. Fine tune with EQ.

Wood type is more of a concern when considering workability, finish and durability.

This is my opinion, formed through experience, although I know many people find it controversial.
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Old 09-20-2012, 10:51 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by von Layzonfon
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Pickups + Electronics + Processing + Amplification > Wood

If you're talking about sound. If you want bright, go single coil. If you want warm, go humbucker. Fine tune with EQ.

Wood type is more of a concern when considering workability, finish and durability.

This is my opinion, formed through experience, although I know many people find it controversial.

I kind of agree with this, but wood type also has a lot to do with sustain, weight, and how well certain frequencies sound.

Like I've noticed that heavier wood usually has better sounding lows, and lighter has better highs.

But I'd say that 60% of the tone comes from the electronics.
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Old 09-20-2012, 11:00 AM   #11
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I have the same pickups in an swamp ash body as I do in a basswood body... a brighter and sharper attack in the swamp ash (a harder and brighter wood).
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Old 09-20-2012, 11:38 AM   #12
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I have the same pickups in an swamp ash body as I do in a basswood body... a brighter and sharper attack in the swamp ash (a harder and brighter wood).
Just out of curiosity; are they the same body style, thickness, neck construction, scale length, nut, bridge, string gauge, wiring configuration, pots, capacitors? As any scientist will tell you, if you want to measure the effect of changing a single variable you have to keep everything else constant.
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Old 09-20-2012, 11:54 AM   #13
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The Swamp ash is more of a EVH style guitar (MusicMan), whereas the Basswood is the Satriani model. Certainly there are other variables. I'll give you that. How many guitars do you have that are exactly the same specs, but different wood bodies, and there is no difference in tone?
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Old 09-20-2012, 12:15 PM   #14
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You really just need to figure out what exactly you are looking for, no one can tell you what that is. For my build I just wanted the hardest piece I could in in the fewest pieces (for structural integrity). After looking at a hardness chart I bought a 1 piece American Ash body for 50 ($80).
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Old 09-20-2012, 12:25 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Beauty/Broken
I would avoid basswood if you're wanting to go for quality. It's one of the cheaper tonewoods that you often find on very cheap or budget guitars.

Yes, basswood is "cheaper" in cost, but it's not a bad tone-wood by any means. It sounds as good as any other tone-wood and it's light. The only downsides are that the color and grain pattern are bland, and it's soft. Both of those things mean little if it's painted and clear coated with poly.
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Old 09-20-2012, 04:06 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by W4RP1G
Yes, basswood is "cheaper" in cost, but it's not a bad tone-wood by any means. It sounds as good as any other tone-wood and it's light. The only downsides are that the color and grain pattern are bland, and it's soft. Both of those things mean little if it's painted and clear coated with poly.


Thank you for agree'ing haha.

2 out of my 3 guitars are basswood and the third is mahogany. and i actually prefer the basswood sound over the mahogany. The leads are brighter and sharper but of course if you're going for a warm bluesy sound then mahogany would work. But I like basswood because for the sound and the price of it you can't beat it.
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Old 09-20-2012, 04:40 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by logicbdj
The Swamp ash is more of a EVH style guitar (MusicMan), whereas the Basswood is the Satriani model. Certainly there are other variables. I'll give you that. How many guitars do you have that are exactly the same specs, but different wood bodies, and there is no difference in tone?
That's sort of my point. There are so many different things that contribute to the sound of a guitar it's almost impossible to compare any two and reach a satisfactory conclusion. I'm not for one minute suggesting that the wood makes no difference at all, I just think that it's often given much more credit than it may be due, given everything else that's going on to generate the sound that's coming out of the speakers.

In fact, I own several guitars with similar, but notably different specs and I did comparative recordings which you can listen to here if you so choose. Which one sounds the brightest to me? The one made of mahogany. But you'd be hard pressed to tell most of them apart. Go figure.

For another excellent example of the conundrum, take a look at this. Two ostensibly identical guitars except for the finish and yet they sound slightly different. Is the finish responsible for that? Given that he clearly states that he's blocked the trem on one, de-tuned it and changed the string gauge, is it not more likely that those are the cause of the different tone? There's a similar debate raging in the comments under the video.

Anyway, this is one of those things that everyone has opinions on and everyone finds their own "truth". At the end of the day we find what we are happy with. I'm not saying anyone is right or wrong, just hopefully encouraging people to ignore comments like, "Plywood!? It's junk!". Try it. You might be surprised. I mean, who doesn't want an excuse to acquire lots of different guitars, right?

ZOSO, sorry for hijacking your thread. All the advice here is good but don't sweat your choice too much. And enjoy your new guitar - when it arrives.

Peace to all.
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Old 09-21-2012, 08:20 AM   #18
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Old 09-21-2012, 10:05 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Beauty/Broken
I would avoid basswood if you're wanting to go for quality. It's one of the cheaper tonewoods that you often find on very cheap or budget guitars.

I'd say if you want bright go Alder. If you want warm go Mahogany.

Ahh, hahaha.... The "basswood is a cheap guitar wood" argument.

http://www.ibanez.com/ElectricGuitars/model-JS2400

That is but one example. Search more for your own purposes and education.
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