I am a mere player with a strong interest in lutherie, but I wonder if the additional soundboard (different thickness and strutting etc.) will affect the basic resonant frequency, or add another to the main chamber? Reference has been made to subjective opinions regarding loudness and projection etc resulting from various designs/tonewoods and I wonder if it will ever be possible to evaluate sufficient numbers of different guitars in the SAME acoustic setting, played by the same guitarist providing measurements of decibel output and so on. It might be possible to set up 'comparative' testing at a guitar congress or on the premises of a dealer with a large stock but though a very large quantity of say, lattice-top and 'standard' guitars could never be brought together it could be that the dB output of different designs could be measured and some myths debunked.senunkan wrote:I think the Conteras double back is an addtional sound board just before the back piece.
It is not referring to a laminated back.
Our delcamp luthier Patrick Mailloux (patmguitars) has a description on his website.
Good point. That is somewhat of a challenge as a crack requiring cleats means I have to remove the back. I haven't had the problem on any of those guitars yet but it is an eventuality. I understand this may turn off a few people. I wouldn't recommend using this design with Brazilian or Madagascar Rosewood, Ziricote or any other of the more fragile woods, especially if the client lives in a Northern cold and dry climate.Not to cause trouble but it does strike me as being a little problematic if the outer back develops a crack. I can see how it is possible to glue the crack but how on earth do you cleat it ?
My website host is causing me problems which I just can't manage to fix. I have a lot on my plate at the moment but I will re-design my web site and change host by the end of this year. Sorry about the inconvenience. If you just email me your address I can send you the sample if you like.I would love to hear the sound sample, but the mp3 link isn't working for me.
I quite agree with you, I also found it refreshing. But on the other hand. . . I hope it works for him and he is able to sell these guitars, but I wouldn't bet on it.Marcus Dominelli wrote:What you came across was a luthier who was actually honest in his assessment of what laminated sides or back will do for the sound of the guitar.
What he wrote made perfect sense to me, but writing in this wishy washy kind of may is generally not a good marketing practice.
Of course any musician wants to be sure that spending an extra 2k on a particular feature is going to guarantee an improvement. I wish it worked this way, but it does not. For example, double tops are supposed to be louder than a regular solid top. Sometimes they are, sometimes they're not. C'est la vie.
I do find it refreshing when I read what I percieve to be honest, unbiased lutherie. It's a nice antidote to all the B.S. that we get bombarded with in the world of guitar marketing via magazines, the internet, or elsewhere.
Truth is after all a moving target; we cannot always hit it square on. Welcome to the real world!
Fine. That's just your opinion. I know PLENTY of people who actually hate the sound of a Smallman, so it's all a question of preference as opposed to absolutes. It simply isn't something you can prove scientifically. Williams went with it, Bream didn't. A loud guitar by itself is pretty meaningless. It's meaningless because I could rig up a Strat and a few hundred Watts of Marshall amplification and no laminated, lattice or double top/back is going to beat it.stickeyhickey1 wrote:As a college student, i get to play my friends guitars. Two of my friends have australian double back/arched back guitars. One has a smallman and the other a sheridan. These things are LOUD, but in a very good way. I prefer the sound greatly to normal guitars. It has a lot more depth, warmth and punch, a powerful sound but with great softness - basically its where the guitar needs to be heading in its quest to be a more serious concert instrument. Also, as these guitars are so much louder, it means you can pluck softer - hence making a nicer tone.
Michael.N, That statement (and the rest of your post) is a good, objective antidote to all the subjectivity and hype I have read on this topic. You mentioned Bream and Williams in passing and I recall hearing them both in concert (in duo and solo spots) in the large Glasgow Royal Concert Hall some years ago. John Williams played a Smallman and I could not discern any greater amplitude in his solo set (a Weiss lute suite) in comparison to Julian Bream's guitar (Romanillos or Aram, I can't remember) in a set of the more difficult etudes by Villa-Lobos. When people say guitar 'A' is louder than 'B' I wonder if they have both been heard in the same room/acoustic setting played by the same guitarist. Even a cursory look at the nature of classical guitars (similar size chamber/scale length/nylon strings) will perceive a limit to the amplitude it is capable of. It is obvious that a significantly greater volume can only be achieved by radical changes in design/structure and such changes affect the 'nature' of the timbre produced. It seems to me that a very thin soundboard atop thick/heavy back and sides will result in a sound typical of other instruments with that kind of construction, e.g. the Banjo - I hear a plangent quality in lattice-top guitars which I don't like, but accept that other players/listeners do, of course.Michael.N. wrote:[ Guitarists have been searching for this holy grail for a hundred years at the very least. It's practically an obsession and the theory that by producing a very loud guitar is somehow going to transform the fortunes of the instrument is deluded. Essentially the Guitar is what it is. You can tinker around the edges but if you change the very nature of the sound you may as well play the Piano. It's a true concert instrument. It is loud, has depth, is powerful and is capable of great dynamics; from the very soft to the very loud.