#1
Hello there!

I'm looking for my first western guitar , unfortunately I'm a lefty so it's not a wide range of guitars that may suit me.

But the ones I've been looking on are : Fender Tim Armstrong Hellcat (or Deeluxe) and Yamaha FG730S.

Is it a big difference in the matter of sound ? (Warmth , depth etc)

And some questions about western guitars :

Should I buy an amp immediately or can it wait?

Can I store it as usual? ( Wallmount)

Which strings is the most comfortable ones ? (your opinion)


Thanks in advance // ilikewatermelon
#2
Quote by Ilikewatermelon
Hello there!

I'm looking for my first western guitar , unfortunately I'm a lefty so it's not a wide range of guitars that may suit me.

But the ones I've been looking on are : Fender Tim Armstrong Hellcat (or Deeluxe) and Yamaha FG730S.
Well, there's this: http://www.musiciansfriend.com/guitars/epiphone-limited-edition-ej-200sce-left-handed-acoustic-electric-guitar

Plus this: http://www.musiciansfriend.com/guitars/fender-sonoran-sce-left-handed-acoustic-guitar

Fender also makes a CD-140 in left hand, plus another one or two models.

Quote by Ilikewatermelon
Is it a big difference in the matter of sound ? (Warmth , depth etc)
Being a lefty my self, I always have to buy my guitars, sight unheard and unplayed. It usually works out OK. A few members like the Fender Hellcat, some others like the CD-140. The newest solid top Epiphone EJ-200SCE lefties are stellar. Extra big maple bodies, stereo pickup system, gold hardware. I have a Sonoran plus one of the EJ-200's. I believe the EJ-200 is more authentically "Country and Western" in appearance and gives you a bit more bang for your buck. (The Sonoran is aimed more toward retro California, Stratocaster invoking, surf music chic). The "Hellcat" is punk, plain and simple. That would have a much different sound, as it has a mahogany top. (Not better or worse, just different). If you can't find any of these lefty models in local stores, perhaps you can get someone to demo their right handed counterparts for you. That's worth a shot.

Quote by Ilikewatermelon
And some questions about western guitars :

Should I buy an amp immediately or can it wait?
That pretty much depends on whether you can play the guitar or not. You'll have to let us know about that.

Quote by Ilikewatermelon
Can I store it as usual? ( Wallmount)
I don't recommend it. Acoustics are more fragile than your average solid body electric, and are more easily damaged by changes in temperature and humidity. So, buy a case with it.

Quote by Ilikewatermelon
Which strings is the most comfortable ones ? (your opinion)
The "most comfortable" strings are going to be the lightest acoustic set you can find. Although, I don't recommend anything less than acoustic light, (.012 to .053), for good sound out of big body guitars. With the action setup properly, those should be playable with some getting used to. As long as you have your guitar setup properly, I suppose you could cheat a bit with lighter strings until you build up the necessary hand strength. "Elixir" strings are coated after wrapping, and people report they're a bit slick feeling. You might like it, or not, but you would still need to try a set to find out for yourself.

Quote by Ilikewatermelon
Thanks in advance // ilikewatermelon
You're welcome.
#3
Oh yeah there will be quite a difference in sound. Tone woods make a difference. The hellcat is an all mahogany(solid top) guitar and the 730 is a solid spruce top with rosewood sides. Both good, reputable guitars in their price range from what I can gather. There's no right or wrong, just try them both out if you can and pick the one you like better. I don't have any experience with fender or an all mahogany guitar but I do own a yamaha a1r which is the same woods as the 730 but a little bit higher end(more expensive). I love this guitar. I love the deep, dark sound of the rosewood back and sides and it plays incredible, low action yet little fret buzz even with my sloppy playing. I have a spruce top/ mahogany b/s guitar(washburn) that has a much brighter (and louder) sound. Seems most people prefer this combination but not me, except for maybe some songs. All mahogany? I couldn't really tell you but that's a combination that seems to be growing in popularity.

Unless you plan on playing out in front of a crowd in a large area, an amp can definitely wait. You may not need one at all.
#4
If you have to ask about an amp, you don't need it.

I would likely go with the Yamaha over the Fender, just on reputation and tonal expectations, but there are a huge number of good choices these days. In particular I would be looking at Recording King and Eastman, whose construction methods suggest good attention to detail.
#5
i like both the hellcat and the FG730. the hellcat is bright and has a shallower body, which can be more comfortable to play, at least it was for me. the FG730 is a full sized dread with a little more warmth to the tone and silvery high end. btw, i've owned both.

recording king definitely has some nice guitars in the lower price ranges, but i'd pass on eastmans in this price range, although over $700, their all solid models are heavenly.
Quote by Skeet UK
I just looked in my Oxford English Dictionary and under "Acoustic Guitar", there was your Avatar and an email address!
Last edited by patticake at Oct 21, 2014,
#6
Thanks for the answers guys

I'm intermediate I suppose , I play songs like blackbird and stop this train easily

And I will use it for mostly some chill acoustic stuff and probably a little rock/punk aswell

Soo how big difference is it sound wise between them?
Is the all mahogany hellcat going to be little dull?

Can somebody help me compare both to each other? Pros and cons?
#7
both are going to be just a little dull (assuming you mean what a lot of players call boxy when you say dull), as they're not all solid guitars. the yamaha may in some ways have an edge - more bass due to bigger body depth, maybe a hint more resonance - but the hellcat had a nice, bright sound to it, probably in part due to the maple neck. if it had had a wider neck, i'd still own it.

personally i play fingerstyle about 75% of the time, and find a wider nut makes it much easier and more comfortable to play, but being a lefty on a budget, i don't know that there are a lot of options.
Quote by Skeet UK
I just looked in my Oxford English Dictionary and under "Acoustic Guitar", there was your Avatar and an email address!
#8
both are going to be just a little dull (assuming you mean what a lot of players call boxy when you say dull), as they're not all solid guitars. /QUOTE]

Hmm, I'm not so sure about that. I have had a large and expensive collection of acoustics over the years, including Martins, Gibsons and Matons. The brightest and tightest of these is my current 20yo Maton M300 which is all-laminate, and it is my all-time favourite for standard-tuning fingerpicking. Solid rosewood guitars are often downright dull, while mahogany and sapele laminates are are usually bright with a well-developed bass response. Even laminate tops are sometimes good - this apparently also applies to classical guitars. I would judge any guitar on its merits, not hypotheticals, though my expectations do vary between makes and materials.

Boxiness often comes from small body sizes.
Last edited by Tony Done at Oct 22, 2014,
#9
i don't find solid rosewood guitars dull, and i've played hundreds - or possibly over a thousand - of them. perhaps it's that different people define dull differently?

btw, it's not hypothetical for me, as i've played many of both the FG730 and the hellcat, and owned both.
Quote by Skeet UK
I just looked in my Oxford English Dictionary and under "Acoustic Guitar", there was your Avatar and an email address!
#10
Quote by patticake
i don't find solid rosewood guitars dull, and i've played hundreds - or possibly over a thousand - of them. perhaps it's that different people define dull differently?

btw, it's not hypothetical for me, as i've played many of both the FG730 and the hellcat, and owned both.


Could be different definitions. "Warm and woody" is IMO a euphemism for dull, and I'll agree the description isn't universal to EIR. - My Bourgeois in sitka/EIR and almost metallic in quality. - But I still don't like it as a fingerpicker in standard tuning, because it is too open voiced.

I will still contend that I can go into a music store and find no correlation between price and a tone that I like in standard factory models. You have to trust your ears and think in terms of individual guitars, not wikiwisdom and/or the name on the headstock. All a name and construction details can give you is a starting point - and solid EIR doesn't even get a look in with me these days. Eg today I played a $700 (rrp) Katoh cedar-topped nylon string that left the equivalent $2200 Yairi for dead. The similar Cordoba that sold a few weeks ago at $1200 was midway between them. The Yairi I wouldn't want in my collection at any price, the Katoh I would be proud to play anywhere, the Cordoba was good enough thatI almost bought it. There are many similar examples, eg a $4000 sitka/EIR Lakewood that has been in the store for about four years because it is a miserable clunker, versus a $250 Gretsch cowboy guitar that I almost took home, about the time that the Lakewood first came in.

EDIT Rant over. Can you tell I've got strong opinions on this?
Last edited by Tony Done at Oct 23, 2014,