Grateful Dead Music Forum

A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

When it doesn't fit anywhere else
 #105744  by tiffcheese
 Tue Nov 29, 2011 12:26 am
It has been suggested that guitar weight affects tone. I can kind of see how this makes sense but would like hearing people explain what they believe makes this so. thanks :smile:
 #105747  by Grant
 Tue Nov 29, 2011 2:20 am
i think it's more that the amount of wood, it's characteristics and how it's assembled affects the tone. and obviously more wood = more weight.

as always, tone is a matter of opinion. but consider how a les paul would sound without such a big hunk of mahogany
 #105749  by Rusty the Scoob
 Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:36 am
Weight definitely affects tone, but most people now believe the old 70's idea that a heavier guitar always sounds better than a lighter one is just a myth.

Roger Sadowsky is a boutique builder of Fender-clone-ish guitars and basses, and he started routing chambers under the figured tops of his higher-end bodies to save weight, and found that they actually sound better than the un-chambered ones - more resonant, more lively.

Purely anecdotal on my part, but my 13 lb bass is very even and controlled in tone and volume... it really sounds and feels like I'm running through a heavy compressor.
 #105753  by strumminsix
 Tue Nov 29, 2011 5:55 am
My #1 is about 5 lbs + a few ounces and has better tone than any other guitar I've owned.

It's the Gestalt and has always been the Gestalt. I'm more of the opinion that some cuts of the same log are more musical than others and when you combine that with matching the proper wood characteristics to the requirement of the player you've got magic!
 #105754  by jackr
 Tue Nov 29, 2011 6:10 am
Weight does not equal tone. There are a million factors and variables that will effect tone. Check out anyone who plays a 4 pound parker fly

Here Adrian goes through variation of many tones.

My #1 guitar is a 10 pound warren haynes 58 les paul but if I play it for 3 or 4 hours with the band one night the next night you will probably see me with my parker fly or else I am probably sitting down! that guitar can kill a guys back, especially at my age. That being said, I dont let back pain get in the way of tone.
 #105765  by tcsned
 Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:37 am
I wouldn't think in terms of better and worse but in differences. I've got a 78 Les Paul that weighs a ton and sounds fantastic and an alder body PRS that's light as a feather in comparison and sounds fantastic. Different but one's different tan the other. Find the sound you like and go with it.
 #105779  by tiffcheese
 Tue Nov 29, 2011 7:03 pm
thanks. I've fallen in love with a Les Paul. I've heard a few musicians exclaim their excitement in how light their axe is, and I initially pinned on it the idea that they are on their feet with it strapped over their shoulder for three hours, so the discomfort of a heavier instrument. My thoughts definitely went to resonance when I heard its possible weight may affect tone, and I've always been fond of trees :lol: so my weirder side went to the soulfulness of certain wood with soundwaves vibrating through and off it. Favorite tone to date in a touring act is by far Trey Anastasio's hollow Languedoc.