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  #1  
Old 08-26-2019, 06:29 PM
brimcfarland brimcfarland is offline
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Default 12 Fret Cutaway or 14 fret Taylor 322e?

Hi there, and thanks in advance for helping me pick!

Long time Martin owner, and recently gotten a Taylor GAS attack, and have been playing a bunch of them. For my price point, and what Iíve enjoyed so far, Iím honing in on a 322, new model with the V-bracing.

I played a 12 fret cutaway with V bracing, and itís the first 12 fret Iíve played in years, my sight picture took some getting used to fretting up so close to the body, but I really enjoyed playing it. I played a Used 2016 322e without the cutaway, and also loved it. I havenít found a V braced non cutaway yet to try.

Generally I have never been a big fan of the aesthetics of cutaways on acoustic guitars, but Taylor seems to do it pretty nicely, and the slotted headstock really adds to the nice look.

My question is, will the 12 fret really deliver a noticeable deeper tone, with that bridge more belly centered, or would a full upper bout on a 14 fret do about the same thing, all other factors being the same (strings, setup, etc)

Tough to find non-cutaway Taylorís in shops, so I havenít had a chance to really try both side by side yet.

Thanks for any advice and opinions that folks have
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  #2  
Old 08-26-2019, 06:38 PM
Godfather Godfather is offline
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I have a 12 fret 322e and my nephew has a 324 14 fret....my 322e has a more pronounced bass than his. I personally prefer the tone of mine over his... BTW, I like the Taylor tone in general.
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Old 08-26-2019, 06:47 PM
oldwasichu oldwasichu is offline
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The 12 fretter will provide a richer sound.
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Old 08-27-2019, 05:48 AM
Athens Athens is offline
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Default 12 vs 14 fret

12 Fret guitars move the bridge closer to the center of the lower bout. They do usually have a different sound than other body styles, but it's a personal preference.

If you're looking for a fuller sound and looking at 12 frets I'd look at other names. Taylor is still rather bright, even the 12 frets.

Just my less than humble opinion.
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Old 08-27-2019, 06:12 AM
brimcfarland brimcfarland is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Athens View Post
12 Fret guitars move the bridge closer to the center of the lower bout. They do usually have a different sound than other body styles, but it's a personal preference.

If you're looking for a fuller sound and looking at 12 frets I'd look at other names. Taylor is still rather bright, even the 12 frets.

Just my less than humble opinion.
I donít mind the brightness of the Taylor, when I want a deep Bass tone, Iíll play my HD28V. But, Iím mostly wondering how the cutaway affects that minor amount of depth achieved by a 12 fret vs a 14. If I went with a 14 fret non-cutaway, would it be about the same as the tone youíd get from a cutaway 12? How much tonal depth is really lost by having part of the upper bout cutaway?

My old jet blasted ears probably canít tell anyway, lol.
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Martin LX1E
'78 Guild F-412 Bl "Marilyn"
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Ď64 EKO
Ď66 M G Contreras
USA Tele
Gibson Les Paul
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Old 08-27-2019, 06:28 AM
jklotz jklotz is offline
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I had a 322ce 12 fret for a while. I ended up selling it because it felt too cramped, especially when using a capo. I'd recommend spending some time with one to make sure you get along with it, ergonomically speaking, before buying.
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Old 08-27-2019, 06:57 AM
GTRGUY005 GTRGUY005 is offline
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I have a 522e 12 fret and it has a really "deep" sound. Aside from the bridge position I also think that having slightly less tension on the strings contributes to this. The bass really vibrates and overall the guitar has a nice warm tone.
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Old 08-27-2019, 08:39 AM
jpmist jpmist is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brimcfarland View Post
But, Iím mostly wondering how the cutaway affects that minor amount of depth achieved by a 12 fret vs a 14. If I went with a 14 fret non-cutaway, would it be about the same as the tone youíd get from a cutaway 12? How much tonal depth is really lost by having part of the upper bout cutaway?
I have two Larrivee OO's one with a cutaway, one without. I'd argue that the cutaway does very little to affect the tone. My non cutaway OO actually has a crisper tone compared to the cutaway.

After a anxious few months hunting around for acceptable strings, the 322 12 fret cutaway that I have is definitely a keeper.
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Old 08-27-2019, 10:36 AM
erhino41 erhino41 is offline
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I've played the v class 322 be with the cutaway several times now. If I could dig such a small guitar I would buy it, a true gem. Not a huge sound but deep and musical.

I cannot offer a comparison with the 14 fret as I could not a/b them, I have played several 322's in the past and was never impressed until now.
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Old 08-27-2019, 12:05 PM
rz1 rz1 is offline
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When I was Gassing for a 12 fret Taylor a few years ago, the 312/322 was the only model the store didn't have. I played the 412, a 522, 612, 712, 812 and 912. I ended up with the 712. I've since played a 322 and like it... not sure what would have happened if I had been able to play one while I was searching. But I got an awesome deal on the 712 (it was previous year's mode so it was discounted, plus they had just had the Taylor Roadshow in the shop the day before and were still honoring the 10% off deal on top of the discount).
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Old 08-31-2019, 12:31 PM
jpmist jpmist is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpmist View Post
I have two Larrivee OO's one with a cutaway, one without. I'd argue that the cutaway does very little to affect the tone. My non cutaway OO actually has a crisper tone compared to the cutaway.

After a anxious few months hunting around for acceptable strings, the 322 12 fret cutaway that I have is definitely a keeper.

I ran across a great take on the cutaway/noncutaway difference I've ever read. No surprise it's on Taylor's website. https://blog.taylorguitars.com/acous...vs-noncutaways

Quote:
Thereís so much tightness in the upper bout where the body meets the neck ó the kerfing is tighter, the shoulders are smaller, and you have a neck block and neck heel inside the body that take up real estate around that area of the guitar. Thatís where a cutaway lives ó essentially in one of the least resonant areas of the guitar.
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