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Guitar Tonewoods

Tonewood refers to specific wood varieties that possess tonal properties that make them good choices for use. Let’s take a look at some popular guitar tonewoods.

  • Spruce



  • Spruce is the most common and cost-effective guitar wood, with light color and yellowing in white. Spruce guitar is easily affected by temperature and needs to be maintained. The advantages of spruce are stable sound, strong sense of particles and rich layers. And also has bright timbre and good resonance.

  • Sapele

    • Sapele is a highly sustainable, fast-growing wood that is generally similar to Mahogany in sound, but with a more prominent treble. The appearance is also similar to Mahogany. Highlight the strong intermediate frequency and the sound is powerful.

    • Mahogany

      • Mahogany is one of the most popular guitar wood, mostly used to make the back, side and necks of guitars. Mahogany has excellent stability, not easy to deform, strong corrosion resistance and long preservation time. Mahogany is easy to obtain the effect of sturdy structure and dexterous form. The kind of material is suitable for music with strong rhythm. The timbre is characterized by a balanced and warm tone with a woody feel.

      • Walnut

        • The timbre of walnut is similar to that of maple but warmer than maple. Walnut is now recognized by more and more people on the wooden guitar. The wooden guitar on the back of the walnut has a moderate timbre and a clear sense of graininess, which refers to the wood preferred by the finger players. Walnut is generally only used as the back of the wooden guitars.

        • Maple

          • Maple is a kind of hard wood with good tonal qualities and good sustain. Guitar necks are traditionally made from the dense wood of maple, in part because of its strength, and in part, because the material can highlight and amplify the wood in the body. Maple is also often used as a top for the body,  because it can give a bright sound that would otherwise be murky.

          • cedar



          • In addition to spruce, cedar is commonly used as the top of acoustic guitar, the color is unique, used to make panels can show rich diversity.cedar emphasizes the treble. But the sound of cedar is warmer than maple , and the treble part will be slightly suppressed because of the natural properties of the wood. As the back and side of the wooden guitar body, it is more granular than mahogany, and the low frequency is tighter and more solid.

          Tonewoods are important when choosing a guitar you want to try or purchase. Some would say that they have a great impact on the guitar’s tone as well. But as fun and interesting as tonewoods are, it’s also important to note that the wood is one out of many factors that will give the guitar its sound. A guitar’s shape, strings, Bracing structure and so on, will also contribute to the overall tone.  


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