#1
Please excuse my clumsy title. What I mean is this:

I heard that the wood in an acoustic guitar "matures" and slowly opens up through continued playing and thus makes the guitar sound better with time and use. I am not talking about "mojo" - but purely sound.

Does this aply to electric guitars, too?

If so, I could imagine that this aplies more so to hollow bodies - and that laquer also plays a role in this proces (nitro vs. poly)?
#2
This question leads back to an ages old debate. I've heard many people say the same thing you're stating, but I've never come across any serious proof if the 'pores' of the wood actually open after playing it for a longer period of time. But let's say it is true, I highly doubt that with a solid body electric guitar you'd notice any difference.
Laquer plays a role in sound aswell ofcourse, but about the same question arises here: does poly vs nitro make a notable difference? Usually polyurethane laquer is much thicker and ages less that nitro laquer, so it (poly) should in theory 'remove' more of the sound that nitro does.

I hope that this answered your question.
#3
*shitstorm incoming*
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#4
There are changes that take place in wood over time, yes.

Whether those changes make an acoustic guitar sound "better" or not is moot.

I have a 1939 Epiphone Emperor (old non-electric arch top designed for rhythm in big bands) that was refinished (in the late '60's) from lacquer to french polish (shellac). Over the years, however, the wood has changed. But I wasn't around in 1939 to listen to it then (and I probably wouldn't have an accurate memory anyway) so that I could compare it to what it's become nearly 80 years later.

Do those changes make a difference in solid-body guitars? Probably not. Again, I have a '49 ES-175 (single P90 pickup in the neck position), some late-60's ES 335s, some mid-50's LPs and some mid-70's Gibsons. I liked them then and I like them now and I couldn't tell you with any honesty if they've changed over the years. I can tell you I've heard some solid body guitars that did NOT sound great that were "vintage."

If I were to guess, I'd say that, since a solid body guitar's wood doesn't make a huge impact on their sound when new, it's not going to make a huge impact on their sound when old. And if there are changes over the years, there's no way to know if those are going to be positive or negative changes.

But there IS a lot of BS about it on the internet.
#5
I'd say it's possible that aged wood could make a slight difference in adding to the tone of a vintage electric however.....Aged pickups and bridge would make the biggest impact.I reckon everything plays its part however big or minute that part is.
#6
Can wood change over time? Yes.

But in an electric guitar would the change deliver audible results? I'm skeptical.

And as has been noted elsewhere, even if they were audible, that doesn't mean they would be useful, positive or "better".

And how could you know for sure? It's not like manufacturers generate closely controlled audio signatures for each guitar prior to sale, so what are you going to compare it to?
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#7
Well, since the wood in a guitar determines the initial tone, by filtering out some frequencies and reinforcing others, any change in that wood should make a difference. Whether the difference is noticeable, especially in a solidbody, is anyone's guess.
#9
Quote by King of Zor
Well, since the wood in a guitar determines the initial tone, by filtering out some frequencies and reinforcing others, any change in that wood should make a difference. Whether the difference is noticeable, especially in a solidbody, is anyone's guess.

Not really. While saying that it makes no difference at all would be wrong, the difference it makes in practice is laughably small.
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#10
LOL he said E-guitar
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#11
To be clear:

If you're playing an electric guitar through an amplifier what you're hearing is 85-95% the pick-ups. The rest is string gauge, scale length, nut, bridge, and intonation. However, there is something to be said about having a resonant wood on a guitar, the more resonant a wood the richer the harmonics on an electric guitar can be. By how much and does it matter? No, probably not. The player is the one who will feel that and he'll probably adjust to the guitar, meaning they might not even notice it all.

If you're playing an electric guitar acoustically (not in an amplifier), then yes the wood can affect the acoustics of the electric guitar, and it will age over time. Certain woods are darker/brighter acoustically, that's why they often sell acoustic guitars with multiple 'tops' on them; giving customers the choice between a darker and brighter tone.

So yes, tone wood is a thing, just not when it's an electric guitar plugged into an amplifier.
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#13
Quote by AllanAnd
Please excuse my clumsy title. What I mean is this:

I heard that the wood in an acoustic guitar "matures" and slowly opens up through continued playing and thus makes the guitar sound better with time and use. I am not talking about "mojo" - but purely sound.

Does this aply to electric guitars, too?

If so, I could imagine that this aplies more so to hollow bodies - and that laquer also plays a role in this proces (nitro vs. poly)?


My Musicman Silhouette Special appears to sound better after 15 years of playing it than it did when I first bought it new. Maybe it's my imagination, but I feel like the guitar has a better natural tone now than it did when I bought it. When I first got the guitar new, it didn't hold up acoustically to a strat and had a certain "plasticky" tone to it - now it sounds better than any Strat I come across and sounds amazing generally.
Last edited by reverb66 at Apr 29, 2016,
#14
Quote by Skuzzmo
Can anyone here prove what they're saying or is it just conjecture?

it's virtually impossible to isolate the age of the wood as being the only dynamic in play for a double blind test.

any two pieces of wood are different and can have other factors which may alter the outcome of this test, so you can't say it's just the "age".

imo, ymmv, not available in all states, local rules apply, etc etc.
#15
Quote by Skuzzmo
Can anyone here prove what they're saying or is it just conjecture?


Much in the same way I can prove that a phaser sounds best in the effects loop rather than through the pedal board. I can't. The point is it's personal choice and decision at the end of the day, you can believe what you want. This discussion gets the music community nowhere thanks to the blend of spirituality in music. It's what makes this guy marry his stratocaster:

http://www.guitarplayer.com/news/1024/man-who-married-fender-strat-dies-chris-black-rip/56542

But truthfully, how the hell would magnets be influenced by so little wood? Magnets don't give a shit about wood. If the wood is super harmonic, then it creates additional string vibrations, which can then affect what the pickup is hearing. But that's two different things - the pick up isn't being influenced by the wood, the strings are. The pick ups simply translate that vibration into sound. And as I said above, the input is incredibly minimal.

Wood is a material to house components. The only influence wood has on a guitar tone - for an electric played through an amplifier - is purely mental.
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#16
topic = fail.

/thread
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Quote by andersondb7
alright "king of the guitar forum"


Quote by trashedlostfdup
nope i am "GOD of the guitar forum" i think that fits me better.


Quote by andersondb7
youre just being a jerk man.



****** NEW NEW NEW!
2017-07-07 2017-07-07 Update and a Chat On Noise Constraints *** NEW FRIDAY 7/7
2017-04-13 RUN AWAY from COMPUTERS!!! TCE? RANT ALERT!!!
2017-03-02 - Guitar Philosophy 1001- Be Prepared For the Situation (Thursday 2017-03-02)
2017-02-21 How to Hot-Rod the Hell of your Stratocaster for $50! (Tuesday 2017-2-21)
Resentments and Rambling from a Guitar Junkie
---> http://trashedengineering.blogspot.com/