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Captain Jim 10-16-2018 03:07 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kramster (Post 5864436)
The X10 sure is a fine playing critter... love it plugged in...and true the neck is great... haven’t done 2 amps at once yet... guess I am having too much fun putting together a video for the X7 and one for X30...

Your videos are outstanding, Mr. K - I'll be looking forward to seeing and hearing the X7 and X30. :up:

One of my all-time favorite guitars is the Taylor T5. I have used mine with an A/B/Y pedal, allowing the signal to go to an acoustic amp, an electric amp, or both. The difference with the X10 is: you can send different signals (piezo and humbucking) to different amps at the same time, as long as you send the signal out with a TRS to a Y cable. No switching pedal needed. AND, the X10 is a lovely acoustic guitar unplugged.

Flip the switch forward on the X10 and you get just the humbucking pickup; flip it back and you get just the piezo pickup; put it in the middle and you get both. With a standard guitar cord, that same switch allows you to blend those pickups with one signal going to your choice of amp. Still very cool, but the TRS into a Y makes the tone variety almost infinite... a nice rich acoustic sound coming from one amy and a growling electric sound (if that is your choice) from an electric amp.

This was my hope for the X10, but the reality is even better than I had hoped. I bought a short TRS to Y cable to try it out. It works great, but a longer cable allowing the plug in of the other two cables at the floor level would be a better stage solution. As is, I can loop the cords up behind the strap, and they are out of the way.

All that said, this is a very cool guitar!

raysachs 10-17-2018 10:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by raysachs (Post 5859475)
They all sound really good Jim. But I have to wonder if something in the recording hardware / software is automatically equalizing the volume somehow? Having roughly the same X20 and X7 it's hard to imagine they'd sound that similar to a listener at the same distance. Because, as you say, to the player's ear, there's an enormous difference. Have you played them with someone else in the room listening or, better yet, had someone else play them for you to listen?

-Ray

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain Jim (Post 5859598)
All three were recorded while I was sitting in my comfy playing chair. The mics on the Zoom recorder were about 12" from the 12th fret and the soundhole. I have to say that I was less than happy with the lack of bass in the recording, but I set the levels manually, with no changes (only pressed the pause) between each guitar. The only reason I can think of why the X7 would sound so similar is that the projection is forward on that guitar, rather than up and forward on the other two. But, really, that X7 sounds better than it has a right to with its size.

My observation listening to your clip of the three guitars and your response to it really fired up my curiosity, although it took me a while to get around to testing it.

So I just played both my X20 and prior generation X7 for my wife and asked her if she noticed anything different between the sound of the two. She said that the X20 sounded a bit deeper, but otherwise very similar. I asked specifically about volume and she said they sounded about the same.

Then I did a very quick little sound-clip of my own using a condenser mike and I heard it exactly like she did. The X20 is a deeper / fuller sounding guitar, but the X7 matched it for volume. Which I find kind of amazing because from the player's perspective, that two-way oriented soundhole in the X20 makes it sounds ENORMOUSLY louder than the X7. The X7 sounds really good, but just doesn't seem to project as much. But, in fact, it does, it just doesn't project up at the player in anything like the same way.

I'm kind of amazed that this soundhole design makes THIS MUCH difference. I guess I shouldn't be - that's WHY they designed it that way obviously. But, man, it's vastly effective. Sorry to butt back in and go OT here - this thread is about your X10 and I hope you're loving it. But your clip really freaked me out a little bit and I just had to check it out for myself...

-Ray

Captain Jim 10-17-2018 11:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by raysachs (Post 5865119)
My observation listening to your clip of the three guitars and your response to it really fired up my curiosity, although it took me a while to get around to testing it.

So I just played both my X20 and prior generation X7 for my wife and asked her if she noticed anything different between the sound of the two. She said that the X20 sounded a bit deeper, but otherwise very similar. I asked specifically about volume and she said they sounded about the same.

Then I did a very quick little sound-clip of my own using a condenser mike and I heard it exactly like she did. The X20 is a deeper / fuller sounding guitar, but the X7 matched it for volume. Which I find kind of amazing because from the player's perspective, that two-way oriented soundhole in the X20 makes it sounds ENORMOUSLY louder than the X7. The X7 sounds really good, but just doesn't seem to project as much. But, in fact, it does, it just doesn't project up at the player in anything like the same way.

I'm kind of amazed that this soundhole design makes THIS MUCH difference. I guess I shouldn't be - that's WHY they designed it that way obviously. But, man, it's vastly effective. Sorry to butt back in and go OT here - this thread is about your X10 and I hope you're loving it. But your clip really freaked me out a little bit and I just had to check it out for myself...

-Ray

Hi Ray,

Not butting in at all. I was surprised by the recording, as well. I have been able to listen to others playing my X7 and X20 (but not the X10 yet), and have found the X20 to be significantly louder and richer... but surprised by how that X7 "keeps up."

For some further explanation on that recording: I did use the Zoom H4n Pro and wonder if the stereo mic setting on that has auto level to make them all sound similar? I set the level with the X20 so it wouldn't clip, expecting that guitar to be the loudest.

And now back to the X10 - I did a couple hours with it this morning, exploring more about how it handles the output from each pickup to appropriate amps... my wife came into the guitar room to listen (and brush Rufus) and commented about how nice it sounds. When I flipped the switch on the guitar to go back and forth between acoustic and electric pickups/amps, the tone difference is impressive. Flip that switch into the middle to get both and ... wow!

I have the saddle piezo dialed in for the acoustic sound I like, and have tried plenty of options on the electric side. I am convinced! The X10 sounds nice acoustically (not plugged in). Plugged in with a single guitar cord, you have plenty of tone shaping. Plugged in with the TRS to a Y cable and then run to two amps is what sets this guitar apart from any other acoustic with a pickup that I've played.

raysachs 10-17-2018 12:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain Jim (Post 5865184)
Hi Ray,

Not butting in at all. I was surprised by the recording, as well. I have been able to listen to others playing my X7 and X20 (but not the X10 yet), and have found the X20 to be significantly louder and richer... but surprised by how that X7 "keeps up."

For some further explanation on that recording: I did use the Zoom H4n Pro and wonder if the stereo mic setting on that has auto level to make them all sound similar? I set the level with the X20 so it wouldn't clip, expecting that guitar to be the loudest.

And now back to the X10 - I did a couple hours with it this morning, exploring more about how it handles the output from each pickup to appropriate amps... my wife came into the guitar room to listen (and brush Rufus) and commented about how nice it sounds. When I flipped the switch on the guitar to go back and forth between acoustic and electric pickups/amps, the tone difference is impressive. Flip that switch into the middle to get both and ... wow!

I have the saddle piezo dialed in for the acoustic sound I like, and have tried plenty of options on the electric side. I am convinced! The X10 sounds nice acoustically (not plugged in). Plugged in with a single guitar cord, you have plenty of tone shaping. Plugged in with the TRS to a Y cable and then run to two amps is what sets this guitar apart from any other acoustic with a pickup that I've played.

I find all of the plugged sound options interesting, but mostly in an academic way. The only reason I ever plug an acoustic in is to be able to record acoustic loops into my looper to play along with. It just has to sound basically like an acoustic guitar, which anything with a pickup seems to do well enough. I'm not terribly discriminating, to say the least. And I play unplugged at least 98% of the time. So I'm not a candidate for an X10 and would possibly remove the electronics from my X7 if I thought I could do it easily and without damaging the guitar at all. Then again, it's not hurting anything to have them...

Even with my electrics, I have one basic sound I keep everything dialed into and the only things I ever really change are an OD and a boost pedal so I can dial in a bit of gain for lead parts. I find a sound I like and generally don't mess with it...

-Ray

Captain Jim 10-17-2018 06:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by raysachs (Post 5865211)
I find all of the plugged sound options interesting, but mostly in an academic way. The only reason I ever plug an acoustic in is to be able to record acoustic loops into my looper to play along with. It just has to sound basically like an acoustic guitar, which anything with a pickup seems to do well enough. I'm not terribly discriminating, to say the least. And I play unplugged at least 98% of the time. So I'm not a candidate for an X10 and would possibly remove the electronics from my X7 if I thought I could do it easily and without damaging the guitar at all. Then again, it's not hurting anything to have them...

Even with my electrics, I have one basic sound I keep everything dialed into and the only things I ever really change are an OD and a boost pedal so I can dial in a bit of gain for lead parts. I find a sound I like and generally don't mess with it...

-Ray

I get that, Ray. I have said before that the X10 isn't a guitar for everyone... while the body design is certainly similar to the other current Emerald offerings, acoustic guitar "purists" will probably be appalled at the controls (knobs and a switch) on the side, individual saddles, and a humbucking pickup on the top!! :eek: Of course, "purists" may feel much the same way about anything carbon fiber and body styles that aren't a dreadnaught. :D

When I saw the X10 at Emerald's 20th Anniversary unveiling, I was surprised by the those things mentioned above...then the "Aha!" went off. I play plugged in more often than unplugged. This guitar doesn't just bridge the gap between a nice acoustic and an electric, it fills the gap. These days (for me), playing an electric guitar as a solo is less than satisfying... but, having a guitar that starts with a nice acoustic sound and allows you to blend in electric tones and effects (amp dependent) has been a gas. Not to be confused with GAS as used around here... but the X10 may incite GAS in those so inclined to plug in.

Other than that first acoustic in 1964, every guitar I've owned has had a pickup. There was a Gibson acoustic in the 70s that required a soundhole pickup in order for me to play out, but all since that one have had onboard electronics. This X10 is the most sophisticated and versatile of that line of acoustics. Best playing one, too. :)

It may not be the guitar for everyone (what is?), but for those who play plugged in, there is a lot to like here.

cqxiao 10-18-2018 11:43 AM

Hi, Captain:

Really enjoy your recordings.

Two questions.

1. Is your X10 short scale (like 24.75 instead of 25.5 standard)?
2. How do you compare the neck between X20 and X7?
Are they similar or X7 is more bulky?

Thanks
Chong

Guest 928 10-18-2018 06:11 PM

I have said, for a number of years, that the 10 came the closest I've come to an acoustic that plays like an electric. Alistair and I have pushed that with nylon string acoustic guitars that play like electrics. I think Alistair has it down.

I also think that a lot of you who play electrics are missing the boat. Another way of going acoustic/electric is to go electric/acoustic. As many of you know, I have an Emerald 7, thin-bodied, electric acoustic guitar. It's incredible.

So incredible that Alistair is now working on a 10, thin-bodied, electric acoustic guitar. The thin CF 7 body produces a surprising projection, one capable of being heard in a group of players. My hope is that the new 10 will be the ultimate electric/acoustic hybrid.

The new 10 acoustic Emerald has an incredible array of electronic options. I can imagine those being in a thin, hollow-bodied , steel string guitar. I have some of those in my forthcoming, woody, 10. I think everyone should have one.


And oh, I know where you can get one.

Captain Jim 10-18-2018 07:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cqxiao (Post 5866222)
Hi, Captain:

Really enjoy your recordings.

Two questions.

1. Is your X10 short scale (like 24.75 instead of 25.5 standard)?
2. How do you compare the neck between X20 and X7?
Are they similar or X7 is more bulky?

Thanks
Chong

Thanks, Chong. To answer your questions...

1. My X10 has a 24.6" scale. That makes it a 13-fret to the body. Best access to the upper frets of any acoustic I've owned. This neck is thinner than my X7 or X20.

2. My X7 (previous generation) has a 24" scale; the X20 has a 25.5" scale. The feel of each is similar as far as thickness. I have read that the new X7 is a bit thinner than the version I have. My favorite neck profiles have been the Taylors I preferred before discovering the advantages (and tone) of carbon fiber. This new X10 is more like a Taylor neck, the X7 and X20 are a bit thicker - certainly not uncomfortably so.

Hope that helps.

Captain Jim 10-18-2018 07:20 PM

My first shot at a video review - of the X10...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BS0q...ature=youtu.be

I used a Canon G3x for the video - first time at that, as well. I would like to hook the Zoon H4n Pro recorder to the camera to get better audio - this was just the mic on the camera, picking up the sound in the room. The piezo acoustic went into the Bose S1, the humbucking pickup went to a Roland Street Cube (that has been gathering dust for several years - fun to find a use for it again).

South Texas is in the midst of a large rain system, so there isn't any "going outside to play" for the next week or so... this was a fun afternoon project.

121 10-19-2018 08:20 AM

Great job on that video.
I'm surprised how well everything sounds with just the camera mic.


I remember those rainy dreary days in south Texas.
Spent a couple of years at the Naval Air Station in the mid 70's.

cqxiao 10-19-2018 08:45 AM

Thanks Captain. That really helps.

I am more leaning to X10 now after watching your video. :)

Guest 928 10-19-2018 09:11 AM

Captain;

Very nice video. Your demonstration reveals a beautiful musical multi-tool. Thanks for taking the and effort.

steelvibe 10-19-2018 03:14 PM

Nice video review Captain Jim! [emoji1303]

nuttyprof 10-19-2018 03:59 PM

Does anyone else feel like the two pickups sound really similar?

Captain Jim 10-19-2018 04:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nuttyprof (Post 5867399)
Does anyone else feel like the two pickups sound really similar?

In person, they are WAY different. With the humbucking pickup, like any electric, the amp is an important part of the sound. This Roland amp that I am using has a variety of modeling amp sounds, so what was heard on the video is only one sample of that pickup. And, one that I had dialed in for a sound I like.

Thanks for the kind words folks - that is my first try at any kind of video review; I was trying to keep it simple since I was working on my own. On the job training. ;)

Captain Jim 10-21-2018 07:37 AM

22 hours since there was a post on this sub-forum. All the October Select Series are sold, we've determined the best strings on a RainSong, and almost a whole day since any report of an acute GAS attack... so, here's a song with the X10...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FIpz...ature=youtu.be

:)

nuttyprof 10-21-2018 08:51 AM

Love it!!!!!!!!!

Guest 928 10-21-2018 11:13 AM

Thank you again for taking the time and effort to demonstrate a marvelous guitar. Are you still playing any of the others?

Captain Jim 10-21-2018 12:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EvanB (Post 5868925)
Thank you again for taking the time and effort to demonstrate a marvelous guitar. Are you still playing any of the others?

I have good intentions. I go into the guitar room, with every intent of playing one of the other guitars... and then I pick up the X10. ;) Yeah, 10 days in, this is still the honeymoon stage. Each time I play it, though, it makes my ears, hands, and heart happy.

I fully expect to play the others again soon. Some time. I sure don't see myself as a "narrowing it down to one" kinda guy. :D But, after the X7 and X20, I didn't think I really needed another guitar.

The house is full of good smells right now: I saw a post online about lasagna soup and showed it to Joan... she is cooking away on that as I write this. I might go get the X20 to play some music for her while she's hard at it. I think my playing could bring her to tears... or it could be the onions she's chopping. Maybe I'll just grab the X10; 'cause, you know, it's closer to the door of the guitar room.

:)

Captain Jim 10-21-2018 02:27 PM

Well, I hope you're happy, Evan. After your post, I brought the X20 out to the living room to entertain Joan while she cooked. It is a beast after playing the X10. Oh, not it a bad way... the sound is definitely bigger, bassier, and more growl than the X10. Yes, it is possible to play the X20 quieter... but why would you want to? ;)

I had my back to Joan while playing and asked her if she noticed a difference in the sound - she said, "Did you change the strings on your new one? It sounds really nice. What's different?" She couldn't tell which guitar it was until she looked at it.

So, that's a good thing, right? Yeah, they both sound good. I'll tell you what I really noticed: the neck difference. The X10 is more comfortable for my hands; thinner profile and 1/16" narrower. My left hand had to work harder.

I think it is all about perspective. You know how people often say, "I haven't found anything I like better than my _________." (fill in the blank with your favorite guitar) It's the sound and the feel you know - so anything that sounds or feels different can't be as good. Until your hands and ears adjust to the new one. That's the reasonable explanation when someone says, "I like my $30 plywood guitar better than that expensive guitar I played in the shop today."

Oh, sometimes you get something SO much better than what you're playing that your head tells your hands and ears to get with the program. Especially if your bank account agrees with that assessment.

The X10 sounds great. The X20 sounds great. Yes, I still really like the sound and feel of my X7. I even picked up the 814 for a bit, and it sounds and feels good, too. (Well, not as good as the ergonomics on the Emeralds)

Right now, the X10 is probably my favorite. The X20 was 12 days ago. And the X10 before that. With all the playing recently, my hands and ears are all about the X10.

When I plug it is, there is no comparison: the X10 rules. :) And, it's red!

kramster 10-21-2018 05:50 PM

Cant beat the X10 plugged in and the neck is sweet!

byudzai 10-21-2018 07:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain Jim (Post 5868751)
22 hours since there was a post on this sub-forum. All the October Select Series are sold, we've determined the best strings on a RainSong, and almost a whole day since any report of an acute GAS attack... so, here's a song with the X10...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FIpz...ature=youtu.be

:)

Love the video! I think we should start a biweekly "Play A Song On Your Emerald" event here on this forum.

Captain Jim 10-22-2018 01:41 PM

Well, those D'Addario strings toughened up my fingertips. I put some Elixir Nanoweb Photophor Bronze strings on today... sounds and feels even better!

https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-vDSqcWYXH.../s400/1X10.jpg

I think Emerald must have a new stringing technique: each string had a right angle bend that hooks on the first wrap - I had to snip a couple of them off the post.

It gave the opportunity to get a better look at those individual saddles...

https://i.imgur.com/W7woEio.jpg

It looks like they are compensated, and there is play in each one until the string is snugged down across it. Tiny height adjustment screws on either side.

I was anxious to hear how these sound plugged in... good; they sound real good. To my ear, the Elixirs have a bit more punch, with a bit more bass. I like 'em! And little to no squeek.

Tension feels about the same as the D'Addario strings that were on it. But, the feel of the Elixirs is easier on my fingers.

---------

I had to edit this post because the software that keeps our conversation clean thought something in the address of the image location of the photo with the saddles was naughty - it put in a string of asterisks. LOL

Guest 928 10-22-2018 06:05 PM

The 10 is special. I have a nylon string, long scale, 10. I also have a Rainsong Parlor nylon and an Emerald 7, thin bodied, hollow electric nylon strung instrument. The Parlor and electric are phenomenal guitars but I keep returning to the 10.

For me, it's all about size. The guitars mentioned are all good. But size-wise, the 10 is the magic spot. A thin-bodied, electric, hollow, nylon strung guitar could become my one guitar.

Waiting.....................

Captain Jim 10-23-2018 08:26 PM

Well, it's official: the X10 is the new favorite! :)

Another gray,chilly, windy day here in the Tropical Tip; fortunately, the heavy precipitation that was forecast stayed just off-shore. That said, it was another recording kind of day. After making a half dozen videos, using the Zoom H4n Pro stereo mics directly into the Canon G3x camera, I decided to try syncing a multi-track audio file with the video... definitely a new challenge. I added a bass track and some hand percussion with the Yamaha DD65 electronic drums.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUeA...ature=youtu.be

I won't be giving up my day job, but it has been fun making some videos with the X10.

Joan and Rufus were quite patient today. I have been scheduled to try my hand at the fast-paced, exciting world of dryer repair (as in: washer/dryer) when FedEx shows up tomorrow with the parts... probably won't be any guitar playing. (Sigh)

This island boy is in need of some sunshine.

Finger Stylish 10-24-2018 03:31 AM

Good Job Captain!
Looks like a happy couple. :D

Guest 928 10-24-2018 09:23 AM

I like the multi-track audio, it adds a nice dimension to the music. I also really like your sense of exploration. Now, if you only had a nylon string guitar........

JimCA 10-24-2018 10:11 AM

X10 - How easy is action change?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain Jim (Post 5869820)
https://i.imgur.com/W7woEio.jpg

It looks like they are compensated, and there is play in each one until the string is snugged down across it. Tiny height adjustment screws on either side...

Being able to change action one string at a time and with strings on seems like a great feature for those that like to experiment with action. Have you tried it?

Captain Jim 10-24-2018 01:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JimCA (Post 5871375)
Being able to change action one string at a time and with strings on seems like a great feature for those that like to experiment with action. Have you tried it?

I have not. It came just the way I like it. Since there is some movement in each saddle with the string off, I didn't know if it would move - seems to have the same action and string height after the string change. But, yes, any adjustment should be very simple... and immediately reversible.

kramster 10-24-2018 01:25 PM

To not quit a day job do you actually have to have a day job to not quit? Just wonderin’.


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