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Old 09-12-2019, 07:40 AM
Marley Marley is offline
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Selassieville
Posts: 1,014

In theory I'd always prefer a hardtail because I simply don't use the bar in my playing. But my last two main guitars, PRS Custom 22 and a Music Man Axis SS, came with trem bridges so I had to figure out what to do with them.

With both, I had reservations because I actually do like to pull up on the bridge (no bar) and give it a little jiggle from time to time. With my PRS I cut a block of wood to block the trem and it has been in and out constantly for the past 22 years. My main issue in wanting to block it is that when a string breaks while playing a show the whole guitar doesn't immediately go out of tune. That's what happens with the PRS because the bridge is not decked like my MM is. My PRS is set up to float a little. Bottom is that when I have my block in or out of my PRS I don't notice any sound change either while playing through an amp or sans amp. For the past 2 years my PRS has been unblocked.

But Now with the Music Man it is totally different. I do have that bridge decked so that if I did break a string there's nowhere for the bridge to go and all strings stay in tune. The difference though is that I hear an incredible sonic difference when I have the block in my MM and when I remove it. I can't stand it when it's removed. It has some sort of hollow weird tone to it and not a good hollow tone. But when I drop that block in, the tone is solid and great. It's possible that it's the difference Clapton hears between block and no block but he also claims there's a difference between a blocked trem and a hardtail. Obviously he prefers the blocked trem. I have not had the opportunity to try either styles of my guitars with trems blocked vs hardtails so I can't weigh in on that one but I can say to my ears, my Axis blocked sounds much better, plugged in and not plugged in, than it does with no block.

Bottom line for me too, is yeah more hardtails.
I'm into acoustic guitars, MM & PRS, my kids, Technics decks, Titleist, Reggae music, KY Bourbon, fine rum and chrome pans from Trini.
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