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kharn_tb
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2008
100 IQ
#1
I've been thinking about this for a while, and have we reached all that we can do as far as guitar design is concerned. I'm not talking about individual differences between different makers such as beveling and some things being rounded for one designer and pointy for another.

We have several major shapes:
The les paul style
Strats/Super Strats
Teles
Vs
H's (BC rich's main styles like the Warlock/Warbeast)
Mockingbird
Explorer and K shapes (Explorers and others similar)
SG
Novelty shapes

I apologize if there is anything I've missed, but there doesn't seem to be anything new that they really can do. Am I right or wrong? Is there something new that can be done or have we exhausted the basic shapes other then flipping things around?
JesusCrisp
UG's Jesus
Join date: May 2009
160 IQ
#2
Just go ahead and design a good looking, comfortable and practical shape that's absolutely new and doesn't remind me of a classic shape.

There are plenty of shapes and variations around, everything from classic to futuristic (although most classic shapes of today were actually futuristic back then) and from gorgeous to ugly as f*ck.

I mean, I never really had the feeling that I need some shape of guitar that I can't get, I prefer the classics like Strats, SGs, Les Pauls, etc. and a few more modern(ised) ones like the Musicman Reflex and Luke.
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omidmash
Tab Contributor
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#3
it's a guitar at the end. it's wood, and strings. your creativity is the limit, but only to the point that your playing is affected by the shape of the guitar.
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Nico the Great
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#4
There's always something new they can do. Plus, your mentioning of "novelty" shapes pretty much covers the rest of the spectrum . You did forget about the Iceman shape, though, and Ibanez has a bunch of new shapes in their latest models.

Also... this monstrosity.
kharn_tb
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2008
100 IQ
#5
I was trying to cover as much as I could without making 40 categories, and by novelty I was trying to reference the reversed strats and guitars shaped like feet. I was just looking to see if there was anything that could be done "new."
dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
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#7
What else springs to mind?

1) the Steinberger "trapezoid"

2) cigar box guitars

3) all of Teuffel's electric guitars

4) the Ovation Deacon/Breadwinner body

5) Dean Cadillac

6) extreme "metal" designs from brands like Moser, Minarik or Oktober

And as for "novelty" designs, there is no reason besides cost/popularity why those could not be made into production models.

And there is a legion of luthiers out there making all kind of interesting shapes:

1) Jon Kammerer made this guitar for Ryan Formato: http://www.youlicense.com/Artist/RyanFormato

2) Rolf Spuler's stuff looks like it came out of a Roger Dean painting: http://www.rolfspuler.com/site/

3) Rick Toone is trying to use physics & ergonomics to inform and improve his designs: http://www.ricktoone.com/

Just keep looking, and you'll find new stuff out there.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

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alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Nov 4, 2012,
dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
250 IQ
#9
Yeah, no kidding there! (Embarrassingly, that's on my G.A.S. list...)

We also missed the Gibson 355 body, the Vox/Phantom Teardrops, Airlines, Danelectros, Burns, Rikenbackers, Mosrites, and Eastwoods.

And the Chrysalis Inflatable guitar.

Besides shapes, though, there is also innovation in materials: see Flaxwood for reconstituted woods, Nicole for Corian, and a whole bunch of guys doing things in aluminum, carbon fiber. I see videos on up youtube of guys making guitars out of concrete and granite.

And there are guys adding new features, like Visionary Instruments: http://visionaryinstruments.com/
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

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alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Nov 4, 2012,
T00DEEPBLUE
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Join date: Oct 2010
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#10
Quote by Nico the Great
There's always something new they can do. Plus, your mentioning of "novelty" shapes pretty much covers the rest of the spectrum . You did forget about the Iceman shape, though, and Ibanez has a bunch of new shapes in their latest models.

Also... this monstrosity.

It really doesn't look that bad. The only reason people think it looks hideous is because they're so used to seeing Les Pauls.
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dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
250 IQ
#11
Daisy Rock- and others- have production guitars shaped like flowers, stars, hearts, clovers, balls, and goldfish.

Fernandes has the Nomad, which not only has an unusual shape, it also includes its own speaker. It isn't great, but I could see that as being a nifty solution for a traveling musician or a busker.

And even so, I can see room for improvement: imagine if Fernandes partnered with DigiTech to create a compact iPod Touch version of the iPB-10 hardware & app for incorporation into the Nomad. Now, instead of just a few onboard effects, someone with a Nomad could have models for hundreds of pedals, three-score cabs and a couple dozen amps at their fingertips, going through their little inboard speaker...


Hmmm...I may need to write them a letter.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Nov 4, 2012,
Mephaphil
No empty frets.
Join date: Apr 2012
150 IQ
#12
Quote by Nico the Great
There's always something new they can do. Plus, your mentioning of "novelty" shapes pretty much covers the rest of the spectrum . You did forget about the Iceman shape, though, and Ibanez has a bunch of new shapes in their latest models.

Also... this monstrosity.


I don't think it's that bad. Isn't that just a limited edition run or something?
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thebestjoe
Registered User
Join date: Mar 2011
70 IQ
#13
Quote by dannyalcatraz

And even so, I can see room for improvement: imagine if Fernandes partnered with DigiTech to create a compact iPod Touch version of the iPB-10 hardware & app for incorporation into the Nomad. Now, instead of just a few onboard effects, someone with a Nomad could have models for hundreds of pedals, three-score cabs and a couple dozen amps at their fingertips, going through their little inboard speaker...


IIRC some company actually does make a guitar with some Digitech modeler built it, although I don't remember if it has a speaker in it as well.
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JesusCrisp
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Join date: May 2009
160 IQ
#14
Quote by dannyalcatraz
And even so, I can see room for improvement: imagine if Fernandes partnered with DigiTech to create a compact iPod Touch version of the iPB-10 hardware & app for incorporation into the Nomad. Now, instead of just a few onboard effects, someone with a Nomad could have models for hundreds of pedals, three-score cabs and a couple dozen amps at their fingertips, going through their little inboard speaker...

You more or less described a guitar that already exists (well, without the speaker) and everyone the internet is shitting all over it.

It's a big US guitar company.

It starts with G.

And the guitar I'm talking about is X-tremely controversial, most guys would just burn it with fire.

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JesusCrisp
UG's Jesus
Join date: May 2009
160 IQ
#16
Quote by Ippon
I expect Gibson to come out with something truly different.

Even if they do something just slightly different people are sh*tting all over it from my experience.
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dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
250 IQ
#17
You more or less described a guitar that already exists (well, without the speaker) and everyone the internet is shitting all over it.


The guitar + DigiTech modeling (with ever increasing downloadable library of models) + Speaker does make it an evolution...and since it's Fernandes, they could even throw in the Sustainer for giggles.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Nov 4, 2012,
Huge Guy
My muscles sure are mean!
Join date: Sep 2012
70 IQ
#19
Don't be silly. I was thinking of getting a custom built out of a snow shovel. (I know it will sound like crap, but it's for a specific project.)
dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
250 IQ
#20
I like "making of" vids. Nice!

Another bit of technological advances in the field: Jon Kammerer has a patented or patent applied for design for a feedback-reducing top for hollowbody/acoustic guitars.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
sashki
Join date: Feb 2005
2,244 IQ
#21
I think it's just a process of "natural selection", to use the term loosely.

There are always many different shapes on the maket, but some are more popular than others, either due to comfort, aesthetics or just tradition.

I don't think developing new shapes for their own sake is necessary, if only to avoid copyright issues.
Dayn
Registered User
Join date: Jun 2006
227 IQ
#23
Don't forget ergonomic shapes, like Strandberg.

Other than that, guitars are meant to be played by humans. There are only a limited number of ways you can make a guitar really comfortable to play.

Anything different is just for aesthetics' sake.
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baumaxx1
Prog. Addict
Join date: Feb 2010
50 IQ
#26
From an aesthetic point of view... strandberg have been a bit unique:
http://guitarworks.thestrandbergs.com/
I guess it's a headless super-strat at the end of the day, but the varberg shape deviates from that design a bit more.

Rick Toone has some wacky designs: http://www.ricktoone.com/instruments.html
as well as some really cool technological advancements: http://www.ricktoone.com/lutherie.html

... and if you want more technological advancements; look up the Evertune bridge and true temperament fretting system.

May be a while until we see these things go mainstream. The average person generally doesn't stray too far from Fender, Gibson and Ibanez. Every other player I know thinks I'm nuts for looking into all this obscure tech.
Kyleisthename
Registered User
Join date: Jul 2010
100 IQ
#27
Well, something that you have to think about is MATERIAL PRINTERS!

You could make any shape of guitar you could possible want at home if they become cheap enough.
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dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
250 IQ
#28
I saw an article a couple of months ago about a 3D printed guitar made this year.

Besides that, look at the new materials out there finding their way to luthiers: besides the ones mentioned already, I've seen Kevlar, Delta metal and other exotic manmade materials.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
250 IQ
#30
I was reading about the Gibson, and it IS an interesting guitar. One thing stands out to me, though: Gibson is talking about setting up something analogous to the Apple App Store to handle the downloads for this guitar.

WHY?

I've seen several companies try to reinvent the wheel lately, almost always to their detriment. Even Apple did that by ditching Google Maps for its own program, and it was a buggy mess.

DigiTech- admittedly a smaller company than Gibson- saved a metric BUTTLOAD of money by simply using the iPads & App Store to realize their iPB-10...and all of the Apple mobile devices for its iStomp pedal.

It is possible that Gibson will get it right, and have a dependable, easy to use interface and not be beholden to anyone else, but will the benefits outweigh the costs?

And what if they screw it up?

I mean, if they have a mad on about Apple, why not go with the Android store?
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Nov 5, 2012,
baumaxx1
Prog. Addict
Join date: Feb 2010
50 IQ
#31
I don't understand what the point of the Firebird X is... are the effects built into the guitar? I don't understand the way they're describing it with all the marketing wank... they make it sound like it will run operating systems and angry birds. It missed a trick IMO by not incorporating a touchpad/touchscreen for a new level of interactivity like people who much around with kaoss pads and the like.

This way it's just pointless... you want your effects in the pedal board and back-line so your hands focus on playing, and so you're not stuck with one guitar. It's fine if you play one tuning and one guitar, and it'll probably model other guitars, but it all falls apart if you go past tuning half a step down or drop tune and switch to ERGs occasionally or use certain open tunings.
dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
250 IQ
#32
I think they're downloadable, and it comes pre-loaded with a certain selection, much like the DigiTech pedals.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
AWACS
I want all of the things
Join date: Sep 2009
440 IQ
#33
Theres Teuffel's (sp?) guitars as well, like the Birdfish.



EDIT: Strandbergs are super sexy. I want.
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Last edited by AWACS at Nov 5, 2012,
baumaxx1
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Join date: Feb 2010
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#34
Quote by dannyalcatraz
I think they're downloadable, and it comes pre-loaded with a certain selection, much like the DigiTech pedals.


I still don't see the appeal... It's expensive as, an a limited run. I don't see developers jumping on board for this. The self-tuning is ok I guess, but I'd rather just use an evertune set-up.

It would be cool to assign a different effect to each string I guess... could be creative, but I don't see why you would go for the inbuilt effects there over say an axe-fx.

It looks like a decent solution if you could only bring one guitar and a basic amp and no other effects processors... but its battery life is limited, and I doubt robot tuning will help tuning stability if you've gone from E standard down to drop C. The strings will just be too loose and they'll go sharp with pick attack unless it dynamically compensates for it. In that case battery life will probably be 20 mins.
Last edited by baumaxx1 at Nov 5, 2012,
dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
250 IQ
#35
I agree on your assessment of the guitar- most people who could afford it would probably have only minimal use for it.

The Nomad, OTOH, is a travel guitar, and is relatively inexpensive- incorporating the DigiTech technology might double its price.

(FWIW, Pignose is another company making guitars with built in amps.)
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Nov 5, 2012,
Huge Guy
My muscles sure are mean!
Join date: Sep 2012
70 IQ
#36
Quote by baumaxx1
I still don't see the appeal... It's expensive as, an a limited run. I don't see developers jumping on board for this. The self-tuning is ok I guess, but I'd rather just use an evertune set-up.

It would be cool to assign a different effect to each string I guess... could be creative, but I don't see why you would go for the inbuilt effects there over say an axe-fx.

It looks like a decent solution if you could only bring one guitar and a basic amp and no other effects processors... but its battery life is limited, and I doubt robot tuning will help tuning stability if you've gone from E standard down to drop C. The strings will just be too loose and they'll go sharp with pick attack unless it dynamically compensates for it. In that case battery life will probably be 20 mins.


You know the guitar seems kind of cool but it's really nothing but a novelty.

I don't see the point of having all the effects in the guitar itself, either. It's like those amps that have effects built in. If you don't like the way they sound they're pretty much pointless too.
dannyalcatraz
Black Cherry Jello
Join date: Dec 2008
250 IQ
#37
I don't see the point of having all the effects in the guitar itself, either.


Again, portability. But I agree insofar that this is a novelty for anything that pricey. For a a small travel guitar, it makes more sense. Were I a busker...
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
W4RP1G
Please, call me Pig.
Join date: May 2010
270 IQ
#38
Quote by dannyalcatraz
Again, portability. But I agree insofar that this is a novelty for anything that pricey. For a a small travel guitar, it makes more sense. Were I a busker...

I don't think their intent was portability, was it? The robot tuners would suggest that they just wanted to advance their robot line, and I guess adding more electronics makes sense if that was their goal.

But I agree, if their intent was portability, they went about it all wrong. If you can afford to use a $4000 guitar as a travel guitar, I'm guessing you could afford to travel with an Axe FX or some other such unit as well.
brndnstffrd
UG's Glassman
Join date: Dec 2008
10 IQ
#39
One shape that i like, even though its kind of just a modified strat shape with the top part flipped up is the Schecter Avenger.
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#40
There are plenty of unique shapes out there, but only a few mainstream ones that you see everywhere. This is why one might think that all possible shapes have been done.
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