#1
Hello, yesterday I bought a brand new 2008 American Standard Strat for $999 at Long & Mcquade, with a rosewood fretboard. At the last minute, I noticed that they had an identical strat behind the counter, only with a maple fretboard, so I asked the guy what difference it made. He said that it would give it a twangier sound and that maple was less common on strats and told me a bunch of guitarists who use rosewood fretboards. He said I had 30 days to come back and exchange it if I feel I really need to, so I've left all the stickers and stuff on it, and thought I'd ask some guitarists their opinions.

Thanks.
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#5
maple is defe better. im getting a american strat 3 tone sunburst with maple neck. i like maple fret boards but they start to feel weird after a few years of playing.
#6
Quote by inbloom27
on strats, i prefer maple fretboards. it's smoother and looks nicer.


+1

Maple for me. Especially the lacquer finished ones. They're like heaven.
#7
I have a maple neck on my tele. On strats, I still perfer maple though. Honestly, there won't be much of a difference in sound at all (pickups and the amp you're using matter WAY more in determining sound that fingerboard wood). I say just go with what you think looks better.
#8
Maple looks much nicer IMO. I used to have a strat with a rosewood fretboard and now i have a maple one and I really cant tell the difference in tone. I say exchange it if you think you need the maple fretboard
#9
I usually like the rosewood fretboards better, but not for the sound. If you're going for sound definitely get maple. Sometimes I do like the look of maple, but usually the dark rosewood color satisfies me .
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#10
Quote by inbloom27
on strats, i prefer maple fretboards. it's smoother and looks nicer.


+1

unless you're a tone nut, you wont be able to hear much of a sound diff. but yea, rosewood = warmer and maple = bright IF you can even tell the diff in the first place.

personally, i love the maple, it is smooth, sleek, and just looks freaking awesome on a strat. however, if you're more of an les paul sort of person, you may like the feel of the rosewood.

basically, check out both and see which feels/looks best to u
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#11
I'll be one of the few who prefers rosewood. Maple tends to feel like it's sticky after a while, and doesn't really feel as fast as rosewood. I also noticed that it's got somewhat less sustain going on.
#12
Quote by icronic
I'll be one of the few who prefers rosewood. Maple tends to feel like it's sticky after a while, and doesn't really feel as fast as rosewood. I also noticed that it's got somewhat less sustain going on.


Ill +1 you on the sticky, i have noticed that. but i keep a cloth nearby so its not really much of a problem, and rosewood does seem a bit faster, but maple bends so much easier and nicer. basically, maple = smoother, rosewood = faster
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#13
Maple for me too.
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#14
Rosewood absolutely. Much prettier with my sunburst for sure.
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#15
i always thought that maple looked better on strats
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#16
i like the rosewood much better. the tone difference isnt too big and you probably wont even notice it. but personally i find maple feels slower. i feel like i can move faster on rosewood. and vibrato feels smoother on rosewood imo. also, i find maple fretboards look really cheap and rosewood looks more classy. thats just me though. sometimes they can look nice though. like on a black strat they look alright.

id say just try the other one out and see if you like it more. if you dont notice a tone and feel difference, maybe just go by the look. but with rosewood you should know that you need to use lemon oil on it as its unfinished and can dry out and maybe even crack. so put it on when changing strings to feed and clean the fretboard wood. with maple, im pretty sure you dont need to do anything. but it will show its age more overtime because its a lighter colour. so in time the fretboard will get dirty looking. look up claptons strat "blackie" and you'll see. but i think showing age is cool imo. rosewood may tend to get a little lighter in high playing areas. i have one guitar that did that but my others havent yet.
#17
I mean, you should just play both. Why didn't you ask to play the maple fretboard as well?

Tone doesn't matter so much (since it's negligible, in my opinion) with them as much as the FEEL of your playing does. Which one feels more comfortable to YOU? We can't answer it. If they feel the same, go by looks. I prefer the looks, and feel of maple, personally, but I know people that hate maple necks.
#19
Quote by AC/DC10
Hello, yesterday I bought a brand new 2008 American Standard Strat for $999 at Long & Mcquade, with a rosewood fretboard. At the last minute, I noticed that they had an identical strat behind the counter, only with a maple fretboard, so I asked the guy what difference it made. He said that it would give it a twangier sound and that maple was less common on strats and told me a bunch of guitarists who use rosewood fretboards. He said I had 30 days to come back and exchange it if I feel I really need to, so I've left all the stickers and stuff on it, and thought I'd ask some guitarists their opinions.

Thanks.


They sound THE ****ING SAME. As someone put it: What kind of tonal individuality do you think a piece of wood retains when you have 22 pieces of metal inserted across the grain. The mind is a powerful thing, and guitarists love their little tone myths, so if you want to hear a brighter guitar when you play a maple fretboard you most likely will!

The only different is the feel. Some people prefer one some the other. Try both and pick whichever suits you better.

Also, I'd say maple fretboards are way more common than rosewood on strats.
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#21
Rosewood only really looks good with sunburst or blue while the rest look nicer with maple

<3 black with maple
#23
For the record, I played the maple one unplugged and couldn't tell the difference. I was just wondering what you guys thought.

Edit: If you're wondering, I got it in sunburst. I guess I just have to decide which one I think looks better, which I can't decide. I'll most likely stick with the rosewood, I've read that it retains the sweat from your hands better than the maple because of the fact that it's bare (my hands sweat a lot), plus it's already at my house so I don't have to go back to the store to exchange it.
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Last edited by AC/DC10 at Mar 24, 2008,
#24
i'm looking for a new strat and tried a nice american standard HSS a couple of days ago. it is sunburst with a rosewood neck, i always said i preferred maple like my current strat, but it looked soooooooo cool and played so good that i'm thinking of buying it.
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#26
go for whatever feel and look you want.. as said before there wont really be diff thats noticeable and if there is, you can probably cater for it by adjusting the EQ settings on amp
#27
On a strat its gotta be maple for me

I love how the neck and headstock match when it is, it just looks classier and better imo.
#29
My maple neck on my telecaster is really smooth and fast. So I was pretty surprised when others said maple was faster.

I think its preference mostly, so go back and try it out.
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#30
Maple is a bright wood, if you've played a maple bodied guitar you'll know this, rosewood is a darker wood (I believe PRS made a few rosewood bodied guitars?) however that thin sheet that is used for the fretboard is barely noticable.
It's mainly about feel and appearance with fretboards.

And just for arguments sake Ebony is more sustainier. However metal types seem to think that because it's black it cranks you to twn

Now my view on strats and fretboards, it depends on the colour. Now Sunburst, needs a rosewood neck, ala Gallagher, white can have both depending on your look, a more yellowy colour needs maple (an a black pickguard), same for red.
Anyway yeah, it's pretty much down to appearance in most cases.
#31
I'm a rosewood man. But here's my view on maple (I've had a lot of experience with it).

- Slightly (and I mean slightly) more treble heavy.
- Looks better in most cases (that's to begin with, aged maple necks can either look the sex or distgusting)
- Requires much better care; frequent treatement to prevent annoyances that can effect tone and feel
- Less sustain (in my humble opinion)
#32
Quote by Tomaz24

- Requires much better care; frequent treatement to prevent annoyances that can effect tone and feel


From what I've read, it seems that rosewood is much more of a hassle to clean because it's bare and untreated. With maple i heard you can just spray it with something like Pledge and you're set.

On a side note, to the person who told me to look at Eric Clapton's Blackie strat, I've actually seen his Brownie up close and in person at the Experience Music Project in Seattle. I just thought I'd mention that, it's pretty cool.
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#33
Some Fender enthusiasts would call blasphemy on a rosewood Strat, but I personally like both maple and rosewood.

Maple- brighter, twangier sound, especially in conjunction with an alder or polar body. Prone to show wear after a while.

Rosewood- darker, warmer sound. Barely shows wear but can "dry out".
#34
Quote by icronic
I'll be one of the few who prefers rosewood. Maple tends to feel like it's sticky after a while, and doesn't really feel as fast as rosewood. I also noticed that it's got somewhat less sustain going on.


I felt that way,I just bought a JT Tele with my first maple board and I like my Hag. composite way better and the Squier rosewood board but I have to admit I like the look of a Maple board better on some guitars. The maple felt slower IMO. I gave him the new Tele & took my old Strat back
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#35
Get the Maple one, Maple fretboards play way smoother, and look amazing.

EDIT: On a strat, no question, Maple looks SO much better with a maple board.
Last edited by FRDesign at Mar 25, 2008,
#36
I prefer Rosewood, I just find the rosewood necks faster to play on personally.. But maple is awesome though, I played a Fender American Deluxe HSS with maple neck and amber finish...It was like heaven....The tone was so sweet and bright and the guitar looked good enough to eat....LoL..Never go to the guitar shop on an empty stomach..
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#37
I really love the sound of maple, but I think I like the sound of rosewood even more.
It's just the choice between sound and style you like to play.

I have a Fender Am. Stand. Strat with a solid maple neck myself. It really looks awesome, however, I like the sound of my teachers' guitar. He plays a rosewood neck. I really don't know what is best. I just think you should compare the sounds of both guitars and buy the one that sounds best according to you.

I really don't agree with the arguments about the looks.
A Fender Strat always looks awesome, no matter what kind of wood is used.
#38
I prefer ebony the most, but maple is sexy as hell.
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#39
I have maple fretboards on both my telecaster and my strat. Olympic white strat with a maple neck is divine. I love the feel of the wood and i feel it has nice bite with the extra twang etc.

A previous Strat i owned was a rosewood and tbh while tonally i couldn't discern much of a difference in terms of feel there was.

A matter of personal taste i guess. You should probably have put a survey on this thread!
#40
Strats need maple. Looks better, feels better (IMO), and easier to maintain. Nothing slows you down faster than dried out rosewood.