An acoustic guitar is an instrument with a very natural tone and a sonorous sound. There’s no necessity to amplify it in any way, which is a huge advantage, seeing as you can take it everywhere without any uncomfortable cables or extra gear. Sometimes considered to be a learning instrument, albeit an acoustic guitar surely deserves more attention. It’s a great thing it now relives its renaissance.
When we choose an acoustic guitar it’s good to gain a bit of information or to ask somebody to help us with the purchase. There are a lot of different ways of using it, we can play with chords, select a line of melody or join both of those styles and do some fingerpicking.
The differences in its tone rely upon different kinds of wood, sound boards, even strings, and obviously, hands of the player, seeing as an acoustic guitar is very sensitive to different articulation.
Types of acoustic guitars:
OM – Orchestra Model
It’s universal, heavily influenced by one’s articulation. Characterized by a warm sound with more dominance of middle range. This type is widely used by the Takamine brand, which is a great choice for players fascinated with fingerstyle. An example of such an instrument is Jasmine JO36 OM. It has got a very clear, bright and melodious sound due to having a spruce cover plate.
With quite a smaller body, it’s still characterized by thick middle tones. First models were produced by Martin. It’s a very well-adjusted model for playing for example blues or folk.
Not much to explain, it’s just a bigger version of a concert model, working well for the same stuff, though far more sonorous due to its larger sound board.
This model is very often found with an extra cutaway, a shape which hasn’t been used for very long actually, to be more precise just since 1994 when Taylor introduced it to the market. It’s characterized by its very even sound, fitting with almost every genre.
Also called Western. A huge sound board, mostly used for accompaniment purposes with chords. It’s characterized by a strong sound with more lower register. It’s great for playing with a guitar pick. More and more often it’s well represented by Marris D220, which is a perfect example of such a guitar, and works well for musicians of different levels, beginners or with intermediate skills.
Guitars with jumbo or super jumbo sound boards are characterized by a very loud and sonorous sound, and a lot of bass in their tone due to their round bottom shape and huge size. Bigger than a dreadnought and thus even louder. One of such instruments, which is more noteworthy is Lag GLA-T77J.
What’s more, the type of the wood in a guitar is also influential for its sound, so in the future it’s good to have some knowledge on whatever suits ourselves more.
Guitars might be made of some plywood or pure solid wood. The latter can be found in more expensive guitars, but thanks to that we can be sure that the sound board is made out of one piece of wood, what positively affects the sound of it. If you’re a beginner though, you shouldn’t worry about plywood at all, it will sound just fine for players who just need to take a few of their first steps with the instrument.
Hard and beautiful wood. Very often used for the production of guitar necks, though it’s still fit for a sound board just so. Characterized by its bright sound and a bit more of higher tones.
A lot of acoustic guitars have a spruce top cover, and it’s understandable, seeing as this type of wood is known for quality tone and as we mentioned before, bright and melodious sound.
Heavy and with warm sound, enriched with more middle tones. Some guitars are thoroughly completed with this kind of wood, however it’s got its burden in the price, what probably isn’t suitable for beginners.
The name of the wood itself is very well-know, and that’s probably due to its high usage within the production of fretboards. A guitar’s body made of rosewood on the other hand, is characterized by strong bass and middle range. Warm sound and sensitivity to articulation make it a good choice for fingerpicking style.
There are guitars by Ovation, holding that same name for their designed sound boards, and those actually don’t have a typical sound hole in the middle of the sound board, but a few smaller holes moved to the front of its body. The back of the guitar is oval and made of synthetic material. Kaki King, an American guitarist, uses Ovation guitars often.
At the beginning we mentioned the factors that influence the sound of a guitar. However, it’s important to remember that acoustic guitars are handmade instruments, and there is a huge possibility that two identical products may still differ from each other. Though it can’t be as drastic and big to bother anybody with less than advanced ears for music.