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Old 01-26-2018, 09:10 AM
Picker2 Picker2 is offline
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Default V-bracing and Taylor's Marketing Machine... so NOT impressed.

I know there is another thread about Taylor's new V-bracing, but I decided to open this new one to focus more on the transition from Taylor as an open, honest and passionate guitar builder to the manipulative marketing machine they seem to have turned in to. As a long time Taylor player, I am so not impressed, and actually feel like I am not taken seriously anymore as a customer.

Let me get one thing straight: I love Taylors and I owned just about every body shape of their top models. I purchased several dozens of high end Taylors in the last 15 years or so and I still own a handful of their top-of-the-line instruments, including BTO's. Fantastic guitars!

And that's why it really saddens me to read all the marketing yadayada Taylor tries to convince their customers with today. It is all so fake, it's not sincere, and often the arguments don't even make sense from a physics point of view.

So, this morning I received the Taylor Insider email with a link to the video What is V-Class Bracing where I saw Andy Powers sitting in his cabin, staring out of the window, scratching his chin and sketching in a Robinson Crusoe style diary, tinkering with wooden sticks, allegedly inventing V-bracing. Oh please guys... how old do you think your customers are by the time they can afford a Taylor? This is all so clearly put in scene and made up... just like the whole rest of the story.

This is not how a top manufacturer designs guitars. I'll tell you what really happened. Taylor, or maybe Andy, has been experimenting with different bracings. Of course! If you have a Taylor factory at your disposal you can make ten guitars every day with all kinds of wild bracings and simply try them out. Fantastic, and its great they did this. And so, one of those new patterns actually sounded pretty good, and they decided to productise it in a limited series. So far so good.

At that point, they should have done something like this:



Now that would have been an honest and open customer communication that would have shown respect to me, as one of their better customers, and all other Taylor addicts. And it would certainly have attracted me to the Taylor headquarters in Amsterdam to try one of these new machines out - and even buy one on the spot. But after this whole fake fairytale story full of pseudo science and makebelief... it will probably take a while before I go to Amsterdam.

And in the mean time I wish Bob fires the Taylor marketeers. They are ruining what was once a great company i.m.h.o.
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Old 01-26-2018, 09:22 AM
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It's been said that there's no such thing as bad press. In your desire to express your discontent with the style of Taylor's marketing their new bracing, you've actually helped to spread the word. Don't know if that was their strategy, but in this case it certainly worked.

I've been very pleased with the revoiced models that I purchased, and will assume that there will be some tonal advantages to this new bracing; but Taylor's marketing won't be enough to either steer me toward or away from running out to purchase a V-braced model....
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Old 01-26-2018, 09:28 AM
Athens Athens is offline
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Default Taylor

The final proof is the end product, not the marketing pieces.

I'll reserve judgement until I get the chance to play one of the redesigns.

You'll notice that there's only one Taylor in my sig and it's an older one.

None of their recent designs has impressed me enough to lay down my money.

We'll see if that changes.
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Old 01-26-2018, 09:37 AM
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Shades of Blue Shades of Blue is offline
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Originally Posted by Picker2 View Post


I'm with you 100%. I got excited about what the innovation was going to be, given that Bob was so excited. Now, I sit here let down, and while it should be exciting and uplifting that a company is indeed innovating, they built my expectations too high.

Although, does anyone feel like they are trying to be too artsy with the bracing? What's next? Flowers and Trees Inlays on the back of the top?
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Old 01-26-2018, 09:48 AM
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Interesting reason for being irritated at Taylor. I viewed the link and thought it was typical Taylor advertising. There's always got to be something new to encourage the fan base and potential buyers.

Not a Taylor owner but I've always enjoyed the ads and their innovations. Of course it's up the buyer to vote w/ $$s or not.
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Old 01-26-2018, 09:50 AM
Treenewt Treenewt is offline
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Iím not a big Taylor fan, but respect what Bob and now Andy have done in the guitar world. One thing struck me while watching the videos was Andy explaining how his new bracing solves a problem with sustain and volume. Iíve played many uitars that I donít believe have any problem in either of those areas. I donít know t was an issue?

In fact, after watching the video someone posted last week about the goodall factory, I thought ďthose guitars are mondters in sustain and volumeĒ, and itís done with traditional-ish x bracing.

I applaud Bob and Andy for their continued efforts to improve the guitar, but it was all a bit much for me. I would like to play some examples of the new bracing alongside comparable acoustics by Taylor and others, just to hear the difference (real or supposed) myself.
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Old 01-26-2018, 09:56 AM
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So you're saying they should have spent countless hours on R&D, retooled their factory, and come up with a new design and then had an ad campaign something along the lines of "Taylor--we changed some stuff; whatever..."
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Old 01-26-2018, 09:57 AM
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Satisfaction is determined by the relationship between what you expect and what you actually get. Hyping a product, as this ad campaign has, sets expectations pretty high. If the guitars are really that good, then the ad campaign will have been a success. If they're not all that good, then lots of people will focus more on the overstated virtues of V bracing than on any of its actual benefits. (Although, of course, the ultimate measure of success in any ad campaign is generating sales, not product improvements.)

Bill Collings would certainly say glowing things about a lot of his guitars. Sometimes, I think he may have gone a bit too far. But I always sensed that he genuinely believed what he was saying and wasn't just trying to hype a product. His passion came across as sincere, not as staged. The Waterloo line is a good example. Pretty much everything he said about them I found to be true and I understood completely why he decided to build those quirky guitars and what they offered that other instruments didn't.

That may end up being the case with Andy Powers' claims. If all the praise he's heaped (or hyped) on these guitars is justified then I think we all owe him a tip of the hat. If the differences arising from V bracing are minimal, then some will feel betrayed by the effort to convince them that the empror's new outfit is really all that. I really don't think we know yet which scenario will play out. And even after a bunch of the new guitars have made it into the wild, I suspect there will be differing opinions.
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Old 01-26-2018, 09:58 AM
mrgraveline mrgraveline is offline
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A. Why start another thread? Seems over the top.

B. Have you played one of the V braced models?

C. What if their story is true? Why believe some faceless poster on the internet?

D. Lighten up.
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Old 01-26-2018, 10:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by devellis View Post
Satisfaction is determined by the relationship between what you expect and what you actually get. Hyping a product, as this ad campaign has, sets expectations pretty high. If the guitars are really that good, then the ad campaign will have been a success. If they're not all that good, then lots of people will focus more on the overstated virtues of V bracing than on any of its actual benefits. (Although, of course, the ultimate measure of success in any ad campaign is generating sales, not product improvements.)

Bill Collings would certainly say glowing things about a lot of his guitars. Sometimes, I think he may have gone a bit too far. But I always sensed that he genuinely believed what he was saying and wasn't just trying to hype a product. His passion came across as sincere, not as staged. The Waterloo line is a good example. Pretty much everything he said about them I found to be true and I understood completely why he decided to build those quirky guitars and what they offered that other instruments didn't.

That may end up being the case with Andy Powers' claims. If all the praise he's heaped (or hyped) on these guitars is justified then I think we all owe him a tip of the hat. If the differences arising from V bracing are minimal, then some will feel betrayed by the effort to convince them that the empror's new outfit is really all that. I really don't think we know yet which scenario will play out. And even after a bunch of the new guitars have made it into the wild, I suspect there will be differing opinions.
Well stated, Bob.

I am curious about playing one and letting my ears and hands do the evaluating. I am also curious about what other builders assessments will be, given that it is exciting when someone in an industry takes a risk by doing something new with an old idea.

Best,
Jayne
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Old 01-26-2018, 10:06 AM
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They should probably have a picture of Lloyd Loar in their advertising as their "new" bracing looks a lot like Loar's tone bars from the mid-20's. Really looks like the bars on an oval hole Gibson L4. Maybe they had a seance.
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Old 01-26-2018, 10:08 AM
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There is actually a good chance that Andy Powers' story about surfing is true. I would rather see a well shot video giving the idea then read a long article.

There is a term called Biomimetics. It's where various engineering disciplines take things from nature and apply it to how we engineer things. It's quite remarkable actually.
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Old 01-26-2018, 10:12 AM
markallen markallen is offline
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Yesterday I spent about 5-7 minutes playing one of the newly braced Taylors at the NAMM show. My personal opinion as someone who is just your average player is there was little perceivable difference. Perhaps a bit more response from the top for someone who has a very percussive style playing, but as your basic strummer and light fingerpicker I really didn't notice much difference from what I am used to with my regular Taylor and R. Taylor guitars.

Just my initial reaction and observation for what it's worth.

Cheers,

Mark
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Old 01-26-2018, 10:12 AM
rokdog49 rokdog49 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrgraveline View Post
A. Why start another thread? Seems over the top.

B. Have you played one of the V braced models?

C. What if their story is true? Why believe some faceless poster on the internet?

D. Lighten up.

I'll add some levity.

I had to chuckle at the segment where Zac Brown played way up the neck and stated "try getting this out of your guitar" or something to that effect.
Apparently Zac hasn't played many upscale or custom build guitars.

E. People have opinions and they like to state them. No biggie.
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Old 01-26-2018, 10:14 AM
Rip VanWinkle Rip VanWinkle is offline
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Since this has come up in a couple of Taylor threads, let me clear up one thing right now. The interior shots of Andy working are shot in his "private" workshop at the Taylor facility. It is on the first floor the executive building which you don't go into normally on the Taylor tour. This is where Andy goes to work everyday at Taylor. It's not contrived, it's real. I saw and heard the new V-line braced guitars yesterday at NAMM. My initial takeaway is that this is not the breakthrough difference that the re-voicing was. But if you have ever been to NAMM, you know it's not the best place to really hear how an acoustic guitar really sounds. More to follow when Ted gets his initial order and we can a/b them with a current model (the 914CE with the new v-line 914CE)
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