Taylor makes a fine
Nice and light, but somehow it feels solidly built. Fit and finish are exceptional, and all appointments are top-notch. Inlays, binding and clearcoat are all beautifully flawless. This one is the 'Custom' trim line- Binding all around, best wood top, gold hardware, and fanciest fretboard inlays. The burst finish looks WAY different in the pictures- a lot of yellow/red tones come through on phonecam/screen than in life. In person it's a warm tobacco-burst. I'll try to get some true-to-life shots of it now that I'm paying attention.
Slightly wider than usual nut width (1 11/16") makes for easy chording & plenty of room for my big fingies to fly around the fretboard. Not sure how well I'll get on with the Gibson-length scale, (Never found a 24 7/8" scale that I really
got along with) but I'm willing to give it a go. Plenty of real estate between the bridge and strap buttons, so that'll help it at least not feel too short when standing up.
Unplugged it has a nice, small-body acoustic tone. I'm more of a Jumbo-Grand-Auditorium- sized acoustic guy, so this is quite a departure from my 'usual' taste, but it's fun to branch out and try something new, eh? Even so, I'm quite impressed and even a little inspired by the feel and sound. Plenty of sparkle and growl at either end, and it seems like good projection in the 3 or 4 rooms I've tried it out in. Kicks my Ovation Elite 12 right out the door, and is different enough from my Takamine Jumbo-Grand-Auditorium beast that I don't feel the need to compare them.
Plugged in- here's where it gets interesting. The acoustic-y tones are great fun to mix in with the electric palette- add a little steel-string sparkle here... a little woodsy thrum there... It's actually pretty cool! (I imagine this is some of what the Fender Acoustasonics are aiming to do.) Electric tones are nice and lively as well- I'm still getting used to the format, but am definitely interested to see where this can go in my full live setup. The humbuckers (there's a visible one at the bridge, and a hidden one underneath the neck position) don't sound like what I think humbuckers usually are like- seems like they're nice and versatile, and switching options have a lot of variation. I was actually expecting there to be two outputs on here- I had a Washburn Red Rocker years ago that had a piezo in the bridge with its own dedicated output jack, but not the case here. For full-on amplified acoustic-only tone it might be necessary to switch with a second cable/amp, maybe? I've switched off between acoustic & electric on stage before, and the options here seem like a TON less work, even if the acoustic voice isn't quite as grand as the Takamine. Again, though- it slaughters the tones of my Ovation plugged in... I can tell even through my lil' practice amp at work.
1) not sure/sold on the bridge setup- they say the saddle is 'compensated' to level out the string height and properly intonate, but I'll need more convincing- I like my intonation dead-on, and it bugs me to no end when the courses are out of tune with each other as you go up the neck.
2) The spruce top and burst finish aren't really flipping my wig. The koa-top versions of this are starting to tempt me... I'd definitely prefer a nice dark & figured koa top.
More to come when I've had a chance to run it through the paces in the big rig. Here's some pics: