Other Guitars

laminated vs. solid wood

1

I know a guy thinking hard on one of these ... appartenly two versions exist... one with solid wood, one laminated. You might think solid wood is better but I heard laminated can be. For the purposes of this guitar, what might the difference be, if any?

I guess anything @ this price range from Sweetwater is Chinese.

https://www.sweetwater.com/...

2

I've tried many of the Eastman models. Played clean, I loved the Eastman semi-hollow with the carved solid maple top and SD P90s.......it was like a P90 equipped Gibson CS336.

I like some of their laminate tops that had Seth Lover and Pearly Gates pups. Quality guitars and the hand carved solid tops were/are beauties. I love the tone of them played clean but kind of tough to control the feedback when giving it some power.....the laminate models are better for this. All models are wide at the nut too.

https://www.eastmanguitars....

3

Wood is more resonant than glue. That’s a problem with hollow electric guitars. Center blocks and trestle bracing came about as ways to REDUCE resonance and avoid feedback. For practical reasons guys like John Pizzarelli have moved away from carved guitars to plywood. Laminated instruments are also far less persnickety when it comes to changes in humidity and temperture. That’s a big consideration for traveling musicians.

4

Not sure if solid v. laminate would make much difference in a thin body guitar. A Gretsch Clipper sounds like an ES-125TC sound like one of those thin-line Martins, acoustically. You can never tell with guitar construction. My best friend chose my first guitar for me; the laminate top Yamaha sounded better than several solid top Martins. One of the best acoustic guitars I ever heard and played was an Applause. That's the budget version of an Ovation: aluminum fretboard/frets with some kind of wood top. How/why such a guitar could play/sound so well will always be a mystery. IIRC our own Norm would say:

  1. Never trust anything that used to be a tree.
  2. YMMV.
5

That guitar looks like it has a center block like some ES-335s, or at the very least a substantial block under the stop bridge unit. Which essentially makes it a solid body guitar in function and a hollowbody in looks). At that point, in my opinion, I don't think solid vs ply top will make any significant difference. Maybe teh solid carved maple tops would have a little more sustain?? Can you A/B them in a shop?

When a proper full sized, parallell or x-braced arch top (meaning an instrument with actual acoustic properties) is amplified it's still a toss up ply vs solid as the pickup imparts huge sonic characteristic to the sound and the acoustic sound becomes less pronounced, but I think you can get a bit of a prettier sound out of a solid top guitar, once again my opinion.

I would buy which ever was cheaper.

6

I know a guy thinking hard on one of these ... appartenly two versions exist... one with solid wood, one laminated. You might think solid wood is better but I heard laminated can be. For the purposes of this guitar, what might the difference be, if any?

I guess anything @ this price range from Sweetwater is Chinese.

https://www.sweetwater.com/...

– DCBirdMan

I‘m not sure if I get this wrong but the link takes me to an Epiphone ES 339 Pro. It’s made of laminated woods and has a solid centerblock. Just like any of these it is a smaller body version of a 335 type guitar. Where did you see a solid wood version?

7

To me laminated would be a thin layer of fancy vineer over something less fancy. Or do they mean plywood? A plywood top would be stronger than a solid one.

8

Actually, my biggest concern about the specs of this guitar isn't the top costruction.

It's that "slim taper neck." I had a Gibson 335 with this neck shape, and just couldn't bond with it.

Beautiful looking instrument, but for myself, I would have to take a pass.

9

I'm with sascha. An Epi ES-339 is what it is. No variation. A smaller bodied 335.


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