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  #76  
Old 03-23-2016, 09:22 PM
charles Tauber charles Tauber is offline
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This is an important point:

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Originally Posted by riffmeister View Post
The "value" of these two guitars may be very different if one were to be using them unamplified in a solo classical guitar concert setting.
As is this one:

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Originally Posted by cobalt60 View Post
First and foremost, classical guitars are purpose-built to be played a certain way. You are not using that technique, so you may as well be playing two archtops with a hammer to compare sustain vs. glue used.
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  #77  
Old 03-24-2016, 01:55 AM
S_Spruce S_Spruce is offline
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Originally Posted by riffmeister View Post
If you are using these two guitars for recording purposes only I would think they both have value precisely because they sound different from one another. Different tools kind of thing.

The "value" of these two guitars may be very different if one were to be using them unamplified in a solo classical guitar concert setting. It is possible that neither guitar would be up to snuff compared to a more expensive, single luthier built classical guitar. But that conclusion would require a different kind of test....

Thanks for posting, it has been an interesting discussion.
You're welcome. I completely agree. Having both warm and bright sounds would be great. I'll read up and get something better than the all-laminate Yamaha, though. It really is too muffled for my taste. There's something about the woody resonance of a solid-top instrument, whether warm or bright, which sounds a lot more pleasing to me.
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  #78  
Old 03-24-2016, 02:12 AM
S_Spruce S_Spruce is offline
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Charles,

I agree with the first quote. Not too impressed by the false analogy in the second quote though.

Playing some arpeggios, a few random riffs and several common chords (offhandedly as I did play them) should be enough to judge the overall quality of the tone of these instruments.
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  #79  
Old 03-24-2016, 05:17 AM
frankhond frankhond is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S_Spruce View Post
Charles,

I agree with the first quote. Not too impressed by the false analogy in the second quote though.

Playing some arpeggios, a few random riffs and several common chords (offhandedly as I did play them) should be enough to judge the overall quality of the tone of these instruments.
First of all, thanks for your effort, it was fun to do the blind test. I voted for B as the better guitar, but my reaction was that it's hard to really tell because of the way you play it. On the other hand, the repeated A/B of short phrases counteracted that somewhat, that was a very good setup. This is in no way a criticism of you or your work, just my impression of what I hear.

It's true that wine tasters sometimes can't tell the difference, or that stock brokers sometimes perform no better than random. But analogies to wine and topics one knows little about have mostly entertainment value.

A concert quality classical (besides everything Charles said) is meant to be LOUD, some concert guitarists have gone on record stating that this is in fact the most important property. To bring out the volume, you need correct classical technique and nails.

Another important attribute is evenness of tone and volume across the strings as well as up the neck. To bring that out, you need to be able to play evenly, with correct classical technique and nails.

Of course, for a guitar meant to be recorded only, the loudness is less important. This enables a studio to use a cheaper guitar, as long as it sounds good. Classical technique may matter less too, if the guitar is mainly used for textures or small riffs in pop music for example. Inside a tonal space with other instruments, eq and effects, it would be hard to hear the difference between a "good" and a "concert level guitar".

So if the Cremona does what you need, it's win-win. The specific requirements of concert level classical guitarists are not an issue here.

Thanks again for your effort.
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  #80  
Old 03-24-2016, 06:24 AM
riffmeister riffmeister is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frankhond View Post
First of all, thanks for your effort, it was fun to do the blind test. I voted for B as the better guitar, but my reaction was that it's hard to really tell because of the way you play it. On the other hand, the repeated A/B of short phrases counteracted that somewhat, that was a very good setup. This is in no way a criticism of you or your work, just my impression of what I hear.

It's true that wine tasters sometimes can't tell the difference, or that stock brokers sometimes perform no better than random. But analogies to wine and topics one knows little about have mostly entertainment value.

A concert quality classical (besides everything Charles said) is meant to be LOUD, some concert guitarists have gone on record stating that this is in fact the most important property. To bring out the volume, you need correct classical technique and nails.

Another important attribute is evenness of tone and volume across the strings as well as up the neck. To bring that out, you need to be able to play evenly, with correct classical technique and nails.

Of course, for a guitar meant to be recorded only, the loudness is less important. This enables a studio to use a cheaper guitar, as long as it sounds good. Classical technique may matter less too, if the guitar is mainly used for textures or small riffs in pop music for example. Inside a tonal space with other instruments, eq and effects, it would be hard to hear the difference between a "good" and a "concert level guitar".

So if the Cremona does what you need, it's win-win. The specific requirements of concert level classical guitarists are not an issue here.

Thanks again for your effort.
Well said.
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  #81  
Old 03-24-2016, 06:56 AM
riffmeister riffmeister is offline
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Originally Posted by S_Spruce View Post
You're welcome. I completely agree. Having both warm and bright sounds would be great. I'll read up and get something better than the all-laminate Yamaha, though. It really is too muffled for my taste. There's something about the woody resonance of a solid-top instrument, whether warm or bright, which sounds a lot more pleasing to me.
You might want to try a set of high tension carbon trebles and normal or low tension basses on guitar A before investing in a new guitar. This will brighten up the sound and shift the emphasis away from the bass response I hear in your recording.
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  #82  
Old 03-24-2016, 07:39 AM
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DenverSteve DenverSteve is offline
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Edit: Duplicate post.
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Last edited by DenverSteve; 03-24-2016 at 07:52 AM.
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  #83  
Old 03-24-2016, 07:52 AM
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I listened, made my decision and looked as the reveal had already happened. Consequently my thought on it is irrelevant. I will say however that I find far less difference between the sound of classical guitars separated by a few hundred dollars than steel-string guitars. Construction, playability... differences certainly but, to me, the tonal difference between nylon stringed instruments seems far more consistent between builders and prices than the difference between Martin and Taylor or Taylor and Gibson for example.

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Originally Posted by Paraclete View Post
Let's just say there is a difference that is more noticeable playing than listening.
Agreed.
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  #84  
Old 03-24-2016, 08:11 AM
charles Tauber charles Tauber is offline
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Originally Posted by S_Spruce View Post
One just doesn't get the impression, on this forum, elsewhere, or from any other people I play these guitars to, that these two are close in quality, as you'd have me believe.
Well, perhaps I'm wrong. It's just one person's opinion based upon a very limited recording. If I played them myself, live, maybe I'd assess them differently.




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I am simply not knowledgeable enough to understand where the diminishing returns curve may hit on classical guitars. Might be at about $500, or $100, or $4000.
As I think we have agreed, that will depend upon the individual listener.

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If quality of sound/tone is what I am after, I hardly need to be a fine classical guitarist or a luthier like you, to be able to deal with this.
That is true, but you do need to know what to listen for. As pointed out below, the classical guitar is purpose-made instrument, initially to play complex solo music to fill un-amplified concert halls. That is a very different requirement than might be required in a studio for fills in pop music, for example. What you want the instrument to do will determine its fitness or "quality" for that purpose.


Quote:
Time and again blind tests have shown that the finest wine connoisseurs and experts who've spent their lives tasting wines haven't been able to distinguish between wine costing about $50 and those worth many thousands a bottle. Most will accurately tell the difference between very cheap wine and the $50 wine, in judging price or quality.
At least one similar test was performed with Stradivarius violins. The experts couldn't reliably pick out the Strad. People often buy with their eyes, or by the "story" or brand name.


Quote:
... To be honest, the D-18 won by a hair. By a hair! Nothing significant to show a clear preference. This was a perfectly good reason for me to sell the D-18, which I did at a higher price than I got it for and stick to using the Fender in the recordings. No one has ever complained about the quality of the guitar sounds made at my studio.
Interesting story. One possible inference is that there are better and worse guitars of the same manufacturer and model - they don't all sound the same. One possibility is you got a "great" Fender and a "lousy" Martin, opposing ends of the Bell curve.


Quote:
if the ultimate purpose of the instrument is the tone that comes out of it (especially for me, who wants to use it in recordings - often in combination with other instruments), the blind test should be the gold standard in determining value.
Sure, provided one has identified "value" to whom and in what setting or intended purpose. If you had your $40 Yamaha played on stage in a large concert hall by a classical guitarist, chances are good it wouldn't be heard in the back row of the hall. On the other hand, in a different setting, for a different purpose, such as background fill on a recorded pop track, it might perform entirely adequately.

There is no question that there is a point of diminishing return, beyond which it isn't the sound quality that is being paid for: it is often the "story" that goes with the guitar, the brand name/luthier or its appearance. Trying to determine that point of diminishing return is a moving target since there are "fuzzy", difficult-to-quantify, factors that go into that assessment. One can attempt to quantify those difficult-to-quantify factors using adequately large samples and then use statistics to get aggregate-type results. Regardless, in the end, a large part of it is still personal preference based upon one's likes and dislikes and experiences.
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  #85  
Old 03-24-2016, 08:21 AM
riffmeister riffmeister is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charles Tauber View Post
...in the end, a large part of it is still personal preference based upon one's likes and dislikes and experiences.
Yep.

As the saying goes....different strokes for different folks....
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