The Acoustic Guitar Forum

Go Back   The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > General Acoustic Guitar Discussion

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 10-13-2014, 08:50 PM
Twilo123 Twilo123 is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 1,071
Default Solid Canadian Cedar Top; Mahogany Back/Sides - Tone?

what kind of tone might i expect from Solid Canadian Cedar Top; Mahogany Back/Sides. Just general information. i know that is only a starting point for sound. just curious as to what that mixture might produce. solid only on the top. is Canadian cedar a special cedar or is it just the most common right now.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 10-14-2014, 04:02 AM
Penrith Pete Penrith Pete is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Penrith, the north of England
Posts: 651
Default

Hi Twilo123

well, I think a lot of Cedar used is Canadian Red Cedar to be honest. I might be wrong...

I think there is a massive range of possible tones for such a guitar depending on body size and build of course but...

... the words that come to my mind are dry, mid-rangy and woody. Try looking at, for example, a Walden G2070 on Youtube and I hear some of that in there.

There are some Lowden guitars with this combination that are canons!

I don't necessarily find it to be the most versatile combination if I am really honest but on its day it is magnificent.

Try listening to anything off Penguin Eggs by Nic Jones - my favourite guitar tone to listen to bar none! I am pretty sure that this was played with a Fylde of that combination of woods, tuned down to B flat open chords and using medium gauge strings or heavier. Just magnificent. Listen to that spit and sizzle! Helps being a rather marvelous player of course!

I think this combination frequently lends itself to alternative / lowered tunings

All the best

Pete
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 10-14-2014, 06:34 AM
Judson Judson is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Apex, NC (outside of Raleigh)
Posts: 4,966
Default

My Seagull Artist Mosaic has that wood combination. It is warm, subtle, responsive ... but doesn't react well to being pushed hard. I don't know if the cedar (sourced in Canada) is special in any way or if it's just from a tree that happened to grow north of the border.
__________________
"Alas for those that never sing, But die with all their music in them!" --- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Hear my original music at: https://www.reverbnation.com/judsonhair
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 10-14-2014, 06:45 AM
MBE MBE is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 3,279
Default

The cedar used for tops is usually red cedar, of which there is no difference between the trees on each side of the Canada/US border. I hear the Canadian ones are more polite sounding, though.

Joking aside, woods are but one part of guitar's tone. If you're unfamiliar with cedar as a tonewood, you're probably unfamiliar with the way most of us would describe it, such as "faster transient", and "more compression". Hearing is believing - you should really go test some guitars out to see for yourself. I love cedar, but many don't.
__________________
My YouTube channel
Some might call me a "Webber Guitars enthusiast".
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 10-14-2014, 08:22 AM
Jim Jim is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 3,619
Default

The term Canadian Cedar is meaningless. What you need to ask is what is the botanical name which will be the genus and species. I would assume it is Thuja plicata but you would not know for sure unless you get the manufacturer to tell you what they are actually using. Thuja plicata is the botanical name for what most people call Western Red Cedar, even though it is not an actual cedar - it is a cypress. It is a softer and less stiff wood than Picea sitchensis - commonly called Sitka spruce - which is the most popular top wood these days. Thuja plicata gives a warmer tone than Sitka which is a pro, but the equal con is that it does not give you the clarity, separation of notes and the same treble component that Sitka gives. It is also not going to be able to take hard strumming as well as Sitka can. It is all a personal preference and there are big fans of both. This is a gross generalization of course. Another major factor in tone is the quality of the wood used on the top. You can get cheap Thuja plicata or Picea sitchensis or whatever to keep the cost of a guitar affordable and it will not sound as good as the choicest high end wood of the same species. For example, Larrivee picks out only the small fraction of top one percent of the best tonewood Sitka they get and let other makers buy the lesser quality wood. You pay more for a Larrivee than you do for budget maker guitars but you get what you pay for.

As for the mahogany back and sides, the way you worded this it sounds like you were copying out of the manufacturer's official description of the guitar. If that is the case, then the back and sides are not actually mahogany - they are laminated wood with a decorative veneer of actual mahogany on the top. Makers of affordable priced guitars deliberately use deceptive advertising when they say something like solid cedar top, mahogany back and sides. The word solid applies only to the first wood named or cedar in this case. Everything that follows that does not also include the word solid before it means it is plywood with the name of the wood mentioned being a decorative veneer. This allows their guitars to be made at much lower costs than all solid wood ones and that makes them able to sell at an affordable price. In such cases the decoration will have no impact on tone - all of your tone will come from the top, plus the shape and construction techniques of the guitar and you could have any kind of decorative veneer you like on back and sides and the sound would be the same.

If you want a guitar that gets part of its tone from mahogany to get that mahogany sound everyone knows, then you will need to make sure the manufacturer says solid cedar top, solid mahogany back and sides.

One other point, a maker can also lower the price of their guitar by using lower grade tonewoods. So a maker can use solid mahogany, for example, but they can buy it inexpensively if it is not the highest quality and so they can make an all solid wood guitar for much less than you see the big name high end guitar makers' guitars. Again, you get what you pay for.
__________________
Member #12

Acoustics:
1995 Taylor 510
1997 Taylor Custom Shop 14 size
1998 Taylor K-65 12 string
1998 Larrivee C-10E with Mucha Lady IR/Sitka

Electrics:
1999 PRS Custom 22 Artist Package - Whale Blue/Ebony
1995 Fender Custom Shop 1960 Strat - Dakota/Maple
1997 Fender California Series Fat Strat - CAR/Maple
1968 Teisco e-110 Sunburst/Maple
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 10-14-2014, 08:43 AM
scottishrogue scottishrogue is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Minneapolis...the "mini" apple in Mini-soooo-tah!
Posts: 3,311
Cool Solid Canadian cedar top, mahogany b/s - tone?

I have several guitars with solid cedar soundboards, with b/s of solid rosewood, laminated rosewood, laminated mahogany and laminated wild cherry. While I get great tone from all (all classical guitars w/nylon strings), I agree that the solid b/s sounds better to my ear. But I attribute that to many other factors that affect tone, such as bracing, thickness of the soundboard and the quality of strings one uses

Glen
__________________
Yamaha FG-375S Jumbo
Martin DXME/D-35E/DC Aura/000-14 Custom/D-16E Custom/
000C Nylon/0000-28HE/Concept IV Jumbo/00-16C/D-4132SE
Gibson LP Deluxe/ES-347 TD/Chet Atkins CE
Fender MIA Deluxe Strat
Art & Lutherie 12-string
Bellucci Concert
Sigma CR-7
Recording King ROS-06 FE3/RPH-05
D'Angelico "New Yorker"
New Masters "Esperance SP"
Hermosa AH-20
I never met a guitar I didn't like.
Reply With Quote
Reply

  The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > General Acoustic Guitar Discussion

Thread Tools





All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:30 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, The Acoustic Guitar Forum
vB Ad Management by =RedTyger=