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  #1  
Old 12-27-2020, 04:25 PM
Brevver2 Brevver2 is offline
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Default Best tonewoods for dead strings

Hi all,

I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas!

I'm looking into a new guitar and wondering what people's thoughts are on tonewoods that suit dead strings?

In my experience, for the top, spruce works best for me. I've found mahogany or cedar tops to play best with relatively live strings. This could be due to my light fingerstyle playing. I've only ever tried Sitka spruce though so I'm wondering how people feel about Adirondack tops with dead strings?

Here's what I'm less convinced of: What works best for the back and sides?
I have personally found Sapele to sound pretty brittle with played in strings. What are people's preferences between mahogany and rosewood? It seems to me that the overtones from rosewood might compliment the dry sound from dead strings. Will mahogany sound too dry?

I realise this is all down to personal preference but I'm curious to hear people's opinions/experiences.

Thanks!
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Old 12-27-2020, 04:31 PM
SpruceTop SpruceTop is offline
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Shane, Bro, Yikes! Don't complicate your mind over this! Just change your strings when they begin to fade regardless of whatever tonewood combination your guitars are crafted out of.
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Old 12-27-2020, 04:49 PM
Brevver2 Brevver2 is offline
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Thanks for the reply SpruceTop!

My mistake! I should have specified - I have a big preference for dead strings. Big fan of the Nick drake style sound. Love the warmth. I like to hear the guitar more than the strings. Looking for a tonewood combination that compliments the dead string sound.
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Old 12-27-2020, 05:29 PM
fregly fregly is offline
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I like the sound of well played in strings as well. Mahogany with Lutz or European Spruce is a nice combo. Strumming sounds better to my ears when the strings are past their best, and there can be a nice classical smoothness for fingerpicking.
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Old 12-27-2020, 07:33 PM
Rosewood99 Rosewood99 is offline
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Buy a Gibson. Both of mine sound great when the strings get old.
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Old 12-27-2020, 07:34 PM
Rosewood99 Rosewood99 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shane Lester View Post
Thanks for the reply SpruceTop!

My mistake! I should have specified - I have a big preference for dead strings. Big fan of the Nick drake style sound. Love the warmth. I like to hear the guitar more than the strings. Looking for a tonewood combination that compliments the dead string sound.
I donít think Nick Drake used dead strings. I think itís more of the style of playing. If you want warmth why donít you use some Martin Monels? Or silk and steel strings?
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  #7  
Old 12-27-2020, 07:36 PM
rokdog49 rokdog49 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paulzoom View Post
Buy a Gibson. Both of mine sound great when the strings get old.
I would agree with this.
Seems like Gibsons can get away with dead strings and produce a dry, plaintive voicing.
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Old 12-27-2020, 10:19 PM
Wellington Wellington is offline
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I'm starting to wonder if my Guild D40 sounds pretty good with dread strings, they strings are coated on it but they're dying, and they don't sound too bad, though I think I like newer strings. The D40 is Sitka top and hog b/s.
My LL16 doesn't sound good with dead strings at all to my ears, it's Engelmen top and rosewood b/s.
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Old 12-27-2020, 11:14 PM
jaymarsch jaymarsch is offline
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Of the guitars that I own and play, my mahogany guitars sound better with dead strings than my rosewood guitars. My all mahogany parlor gets really plunky and funky sounding. Great for blues.
Best,
Jayne
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  #10  
Old 12-28-2020, 01:10 PM
generalliamsayn generalliamsayn is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rokdog49 View Post
Seems like Gibsons can get away with dead strings and produce a dry, plaintive voicing.
And I would add that the Ďthumpyí bass Gibsons are known for get an even thumpier, washtub-bass quality as the strings die - that I personally find rather endearing.
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dead strings, mahogany, rosewood, spruce, tonewoods

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