#1
I am of course a beginner and I am having trouble understanding the science of how the wood of a guitar's body affects the tone. The way I understand a guitar's operation is the strings vibration above the pickups causes the pickups to receive a varying sine wave signal. I understand the reason a signal is produced is only because the strings are metal. Therefore, I don't really understand how the body wood can affect this signal when it has no electromagnetic properties.

I just wanna state that I am NOT making an argument that wood does not matter. That would be absolutely ridiculous. I am just trying to get a better comprehension of electric guitar science. Thanks for reading.
#2
Because the body vibrates and such when you play, different woods vibrate differently. The vibrations invariably are passed on to the strings.

Also the weight of the guitar affects it, as a heavier guitar generally has a longer sustain.
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#3
Quote by Kurapica
Because the body vibrates and such when you play, different woods vibrate differently. The vibrations invariably are passed on to the strings.

Also the weight of the guitar affects it, as a heavier guitar generally has a longer sustain.



Ok, I had a feeling that was the case...I just wasn't sure. It seemed like the only reasonable answer. Thanks
#4
Different woods resonate at different rates, even different pieces of the same tree. That resonance contributes to the overall tonality of your guitar. In general you can attribute different tonal flavors to particular wood types and make a decent decision as to how that guitar will sound. Sort of like chimes of different lengths and thickness have different tones, woods of different density and grain do too.

Not only do body woods make a difference but also neck and fretboards contribute to tone. I know a lot of dudes who only use maple necks and fretboards because the like the tone.
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#5
heavier wood = more full solid sound, i have no clue what the science is behind this but you can really tell the difference, especially with the clean tone.
#6
That's not necessarily true. For instance, maple is heavier than mahogany, but has a much clearer sound, with a more pronounced upper range due to its rigid structure. Mahogany is softer, which tends to dampen the tone and produce a thicker sound. This is why you see maple tops on Les Pauls - it helps bring back some of the highs that a mahogany body loses.

There's an excellent article on the different tonewoods and their effect on a guitar's tone here.
#7
but you don't want an oak bodied guitar
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#8
Quote by indrek13
That's not necessarily true. For instance, maple is heavier than mahogany, but has a much clearer sound, with a more pronounced upper range due to its rigid structure. Mahogany is softer, which tends to dampen the tone and produce a thicker sound. This is why you see maple tops on Les Pauls - it helps bring back some of the highs that a mahogany body loses.

There's an excellent article on the different tonewoods and their effect on a guitar's tone here.


very helpful link, thank you
#9
Simply put, the wood affects how the string vibrates.

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#10
E.g. Maho is generally used for metal.

or Bubinga, which is damn heavy, but amazing amounts of low end