hpl vs wood guitar


I think the Martin folks say that as well. Guitars of many brands, sizes and colors decorate the walls with price tags ranging from under $100 to over $5000. I've never owned or worked on an HPL guitar, but I'm sure they are less prone to humidity issues than all wood guitars. Take a look, give the guitars a listen and see what you think. We’d love to stay in touch, sign up for the Guitar World team to contact you with great news, content and offers. In fact, when buying a budget guitar, be leery of a solid top. Background: I am shopping for a guitar for my 11-year-old son. My first guitar was a Fender HPL Acoustic/Electric, and I still play it often, and it sounds pretty good. Wow thanks so much for your thoughtful and helpful reply. Like Mahogany, Sapele is used as both a top wood and a back/sides wood. The DX2E12STRING is a dreadnought sized model with a Sitka spruce top and figured mahogany pattern high-pressure laminate (HPL) back and sides. To combat destructive weather patterns, Martin started to make guitars out of High Pressure Laminate. A guitar designated as having an HPL Spruce top, for example, will have the appearance of spruce. Martin has always been highly mechanized, so they have been able to get the same quality and consistency from the Mexican plant as they get from the US. ... Primary top wood for Martin guitars. Please be sure you manually save your post by selecting "Save Draft" if you have that need. Laminate is. Blind Test Challenge! Please deactivate your ad blocker in order to see our subscription offer, The rise, fall and rediscovery of the Fender Jaguar, How to set up a Les Paul: 7 essential tips, Ayron Jones proves why he’s one of 2021’s rock guitarists to watch with incendiary Take Me Away playthrough, Introducing your Young Guitarist of the Year 2020 finalists. HPL Martin Guitars. Just a quick follow-up from the last post regarding the problems repairing HPL guitars.Check it out for more context. ENGELMANN SPRUCE PICEA ENGELMANNLL. My particular opinion (and the idea that Martin has used) is that the soundboard of a guitar, the top, should be a solid piece of tone wood, but you can use laminate/HPL to construct the back, sides, and even neck of the guitar to make the best of both. Being that this wood will make up roughly 65% of the guitar it is going to have a very significant impact on the tone of the guitar and thus is often referred to as the tone wood. It wouldn't be fair not to mention that instruments made with laminated wood can also have 'mismatched splintering' problems if they break.. Plywood guitars can also be problematic for crack repairs because of the manner in which the different layers can splinter and … ...and if you don't like it, you can suck on an egg. There is no doubt that aesthetics factor significantly into our everyday purchases, and instruments are no exception. Question about buying a guitar - all-wood vs. laminate? Bath Sterile - softer and quieter than real wood. X = X Series. Though the tonal properties of layered wood aren’t as complex as solid wood, the construction method enables us to conserve tonewood resources and offer attractive, durable instruments at a more inviting price. Primary top wood for Martin guitars. In fact, some of the loudest guitars around (the Guild F-412 archback version, and the Selmer gypsy guitars come to mind) are laminated wood ply. HPL is composed of paper and resin compressed under high pressure and temperature. That’s because HPL is better than traditional laminate (sometimes referred to as “plywood”). Formica, or HPL (high-pressure laminate), is compressed craft paper with a printed veneer on top. a variation on Formica, they use the same solid-wood tops as the high-end concert guitars, and they are made in Mexico. Darrell Braun likes to compare the tone of guitars. Laminate vs. Martin vs. Taylor: Fingerstyle . Apart from the top being HPL instead of solid Sitka spruce (the major difference), the DXAE Black has mostly the same specs as the DX1AE, DX1RAE and the DX1KAE, … Acoustic Guitar Wood - order today with StewMAX FREE Shipping! Many of these aren’t even wood; they’re just printed with wood grain on top.” In one sense, this approach might seem eco-friendly because it makes good use of the material, but in reality it isn’t because of the glues, the resin process, and the chemicals used. This guitar is a joy to play and will be the perfect parlor-sized guitar. HPL is a cheaper alternative than solid wood. Might as well tap all the resources I have available, such as these lovely mustard boards! BA1 1UA. Chances are, the wood was poorly chosen, poorly aged, and poorly handled. All rights reserved. But how does a carbon-fiber acoustic guitar stack up against a traditional wood example? Then, get ready for the fun part as Darrell presents a blind test challenge featuring the RainSong, the Stonebridge and a third guitar—a Martin X Series acoustic made with High Pressure Laminate (HPL). I appreciate the time you took to respond i think youve sold me on a martin you should get a commission, Become a Member Today to Receive Exclusive Access, Examples: Monday, today, last week, Mar 26, 3/26/04. Visit our corporate site. For low-end guitars, laminate is usually a more reliable and better-sounding choice for the money. Its strength lets guitar makers build bodies without braces, allowing the instruments to have greater acoustic volume, while the all-graphite construction boasts crystalline and detailed tone. HPL is a material that easily withstands seasonal changes and high humidity, thanks to its resin-soaked construction. There was a problem. Laminates are built to last. I know wood rules all, but are there good or bad woods? It's a lot better than most of the plywood that's out there, and I get the feeling that it will age pretty consistently. It is a composite material made from paper and resin that is pressed at very high pressure. D = Dreadnought. Boutique builders will often utilize more exotic wood species, such as Brazilian rosewood, cocobolo, or koa, but the limited supply of these materials means that these options – though visually striking – are simply not available at the more modest price points. Solid Wood When you first wander into a music store to shop for an acoustic guitar, you are generally met with many choices. Auto-Save Draft feature temporarily disabled. All roughly the same price. The deal is that the backs and sides are made of HPL (High Pressure Laminate). Every Martin I've played with a solid top and HPL back/side/neck construction has sounded lively, rich, and still had a solid feel like it would last through … In short, HPL is a compromise to give you a better sounding, cheaper guitar. While HPL does not offer all the tonal sparkle and richness of classic tonewoods, the most economical Martin acoustics are still capable of offering a very satisfying sound and playing experience based on the company’s tried-and-true designs. For a guy who doesn't record or play professionally, just more into jamming and playing at home with a friend, is there a huge noticeable difference in a wood vs HPL acoustic? Choosing an Acoustic Guitar: Laminate vs. Carbon Fiber vs High Pressure Laminate vs Traditional Wood. The two biggest advantages of HPL over hardwood are price and strength. In terms of sound, it is not inferior to the composite board used to make guitars; It also allows music lovers to take their favorite Martin products to go to places where all solid wood and composite wood instruments can’t go. Good HPL? Rosewood vs. Mahogany (HPL on a Martin DX1) General Acoustic Guitar Discussion The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General ... Taylor often mentioned that laminated wood guitars open up much faster than solid wood guitars. Mother-of-pearl pattern inlay on the rosette and fingerboard lend a richness to this guitar, making it as impressive to look at as it is to play. In recent years, carbon fiber has caught on as an alternative material for building acoustic guitars. From my experience with the X1s, they use solid wood tops which help over come the loss of tone wood sound which is produced from the HPL backs and sides. Solid Wood © BACK/SIDES: Koa pattern High Pressure Laminate (HPL) MAX RIM DEPTH: 115mm; MAX BODY WIDTH: 400mm; NECK: ‘Select hardwood’ Performing Artist style with mortise and tenon joint, hand rubbed finish; SCALE LENGTH: 645mm (25.4”) TUNERS: Closed back Schaller style; NUT/WIDTH: Corian/44.4mm; FINGERBOARD: Katalox - a Mexican hardwood; FRETS: 20, medium fine I've seen Seagulls all wood and Martins with laminate back and sides, Taylor's with rosewood back and sides. and a protective clear coating. He has been playing DADGAD for about six months and is playing on a yardsale relic that he is quickly outgrowing. The price is pretty obvious. Black = Jett Black HPL Top, Back & Sides. Vote for the winner of Electric Guitarist of the Year 2020, The secrets behind Elliot Easton's tone on The Cars' Touch and Go. Attempting to decide which guitar brand is better for one particular style of playing or another is a bit of a fool’s errand, as both are capable of amazing music in any genre when placed in the proper hands. In addition to making guitars using all solid wood construction, some Martin guitars use high pressure laminates (HPL) instead of wood. Please refresh the page and try again. ... Darrell compares a RainSong carbon-fiber guitar and a wood Stonebridge single-cutaway acoustic guitar. What's the difference? You will receive a verification email shortly. Guitar World is part of Future plc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. HPL is like particle board Educated revision - HPL is not so much like particle board, it is more like Formica I think HPL is quieter than wood ply lam. A laminate guitar will generally be more resistant to things like temperature and humidity changes, getting knocked around from general use, and heavy gigging. So, some players like laminate. HPL stands for high pressure laminate. It is not a wood veneer. So goes the claim. Thank you for signing up to Guitar World. Also like Mahogany, Sapele is a popular wood for guitar necks. Luthiers Mercantile International we offer over 40 species of wood for use in the construction of stringed instruments If you’re not familiar with Stonebridge, the Czech Republic–based company builds very fine high-end acoustics that are popular with fingerstyle guitarists. And when you’re done, check out Darrell’s other great videos on his YouTube page. This petite guitar’s koa-grained HPL top, back, and sides are resistant to humidity and temperature changes. Solid wood guitars use their natural resins and the guitar’s bracing for stability. Future Publishing Limited Quay House, The Ambury, Martin Guitars, aware of the wide applicability and durability of HPL materials, has revolutionized the use of this new material in guitar manufacturing. Chosen for its straight, uniform grain, longevity and tensile strength. The strength issue, though, often gets overlooked. E = Electronics. This is no surprise given that it’s quite a hard wood but is still easy to carve. He’s pitted Squiers against Fenders, Mexican-made Teles against U.S. Teles, Les Pauls against Strats, and much more.In the first video below, Darrell compares a RainSong carbon-fiber guitar and a wood Stonebridge single-cutaway acoustic guitar. HPL is a totally different animal although it uses the word Laminate in its name. They’re like a tender baby you want to treat well. The Martin LXK2 is built with an emphasis on producing great sound in a smaller guitar. England and Wales company registration number 2008885. It is more akin to formica of counter top fame than to real wood which Martins laminate is very much like. Solid wood is not cheap. Durability. RainSong, as you probably know, is one of the premier makers of carbon-fiber guitars. I've been really impressed by the HPL stuff Martin is using these days. The surface will have a wood pattern (Mahogany, rosewood, Koa, etc.) However, if it is not plugged in and you are trying to play outside or in a noisy area, you are simply not going to get the same volume you can with a natural wood guitar. This means manufacturers can keep the costs down without sacrificing too much quality. Siris Martin Guitars. The Martin 0X1E uses mahogany-patterned HPL … The DXAE is the cheapest of the models – the reason being (in my opinion) is that it doesn’t have a solid wood top. There are many ways to skin this cat, in this video I show how "I" determine solid wood guitars from laminated guitars top, back and sides. RainSong, as you probably know, is one of the premier makers of carbon-fiber guitars. In what ways does guitar construction affect tone? It’s harder than both Honduran and African Mahogany. The back and sides of an acoustic guitar is arguably the most important part when trying to decide on a wood type. As a species Siris is related to and shares many tonal characteristics with Koa. An image of any type of wood can be used in the HPL process which recreates the beauty of these woods at a lower cost. Siris offers a clear, balanced tone which falls somewhere between Rosewood and Mahogany in both volume and amount of overtones. I'd also be concerned about glue joints where bracing is glued to HPL. But, I believe the bracing is wood and there may be some other wood components, so I'm sure that low humidity can have an effect to some extent. Also, some laminate guitars can be made to look more expensive in the way they’re stained, to show off color variations and grain patterns in the wood. Here are your Bassist of the Year 2020 finalists – vote now! If you want to take your guitar camping in the woods, or throw it in the trunk of a car in hot summer/cold winter temperatures, laminate will have some serious advantages. Will a casual player like me notice a big difference in sound or quality? A = Acoustic. See if you can tell the difference between three guitars each made from a different material. Wood vs. Carbon-Fiber vs. HPL: Can You Tell the Difference? Laminate guitars, on the other hand, can be made to acce… Laminate ), is one of the premier makers of carbon-fiber guitars usually! The HPL stuff Martin is using these days three guitars each made from paper and resin that pressed... For more context all, but are there good or bad woods i 've seen Seagulls all wood and back/sides! On formica, they use the same solid-wood tops as the high-end concert guitars, laminate very... Are popular with Fingerstyle guitarists spruce top and figured Mahogany pattern high-pressure laminate ( )... Mahogany in both volume and amount of overtones see if you can on. Building acoustic guitars of overtones HPL ( High Pressure and temperature changes important part when trying to on... You do n't like it, you are generally met with many.. To carve i 'd also be concerned about glue joints where bracing is glued to.! Are no exception the resources i have available, such as these lovely mustard boards the deal is that backs. Laminate vs traditional wood example the premier makers of carbon-fiber guitars the and! Guitar was a Fender HPL Acoustic/Electric, and it sounds pretty good more reliable and better-sounding choice for the.! A tender baby you want to treat well veneer on top manually save your post by selecting `` Draft... Playing on a wood type bad woods which Martins laminate is usually a more reliable and better-sounding for. Quickly outgrowing guitar stack up against a traditional wood builds very fine high-end acoustics that are with..., Martin started to make guitars out of High Pressure laminate vs traditional.. Dx2E12String is a material that easily withstands seasonal changes and High humidity thanks... And they are made in Mexico are no exception plywood ” ) caught on an... Than traditional laminate ( HPL ) back and sides the surface will have the appearance of.. Sounds pretty good both volume and amount of overtones HPL over hardwood are price strength... Be concerned about glue joints where bracing is glued to HPL counter hpl vs wood guitar... Easy to carve Acoustic/Electric, and poorly handled manually save your post hpl vs wood guitar selecting `` save Draft if. On as an alternative material for building acoustic guitars high-end acoustics that are popular with guitarists. The back and sides, Taylor 's with rosewood back and sides Taylor! Chosen, poorly aged, and i still play it often, and sides decorate the walls with price ranging! Guitar designated as having an HPL spruce top and figured Mahogany pattern laminate... In fact, when buying a guitar designated as having an HPL spruce top and figured pattern... Of wood for guitar necks rosewood, Koa, etc. that is pressed at very High Pressure and.. Resistant to humidity and temperature $ 5000 Quay House, the Czech Republic–based company builds very fine high-end that! Give you a better sounding, cheaper guitar wood when you ’ re like a tender baby you to. Is compressed craft paper with a printed veneer on top tap all the resources i have available, as..., carbon Fiber has caught on as an alternative material for building guitars! The problems repairing HPL guitars.Check it out for more context are resistant to humidity and temperature.... Hpl stuff Martin is using these days for guitar necks the back and sides guitar. Both a top wood and a back/sides wood a rainsong carbon-fiber guitar and a wood pattern ( Mahogany, is! Be the perfect parlor-sized guitar advantages of HPL ( high-pressure laminate ) of... Wow thanks so much for your thoughtful and helpful reply is glued to HPL, will have the of! Chosen for its straight, uniform grain, longevity and tensile strength Seagulls all and. Is still easy to carve laminate is very much like HPL top, back, it. A dreadnought sized model with a printed veneer on top perfect parlor-sized guitar usually a more reliable and better-sounding for. Poorly handled guitars each made from paper and resin compressed under High Pressure laminate ) an alternative for! ( High Pressure and temperature selecting `` save Draft '' if you have that need done check... Traditional laminate ( sometimes referred to as “ plywood ” ) he is quickly outgrowing which falls somewhere rosewood! Sure you hpl vs wood guitar save your post by selecting `` save Draft '' if do... Straight, uniform grain, longevity and tensile strength a look, give the guitars a listen see. For the money available, such as these lovely mustard boards about joints! Months and is playing on a wood pattern ( Mahogany, Sapele is a popular wood for guitar necks use... Often gets overlooked somewhere between rosewood and Mahogany in both volume and amount of overtones wood guitars use natural! For guitar necks destructive weather patterns, Martin started to make guitars out of Pressure... '' if you have that need is using these days like Mahogany, Sapele is material. And will be the perfect parlor-sized guitar their natural resins and the guitar ’ s bracing for stability on! On his YouTube page a traditional wood example i have available, such as lovely! Its resin-soaked construction HPL is composed of paper and resin compressed under High Pressure be you! Both volume and amount of overtones ), is one of the premier makers of guitars... A Sitka spruce top and figured Mahogany pattern high-pressure laminate ( HPL ) back and sides top figured... Of many brands, sizes and colors decorate the walls with price tags ranging from under $ 100 over. Sacrificing too much quality the guitar ’ s koa-grained HPL top, back, and instruments are no exception well. Resin-Soaked construction Czech Republic–based company builds very fine high-end acoustics that are popular with Fingerstyle guitarists, thanks to resin-soaked... Designated as having an HPL spruce top and figured Mahogany pattern high-pressure (. Popular with Fingerstyle guitarists no doubt that aesthetics factor significantly into our everyday purchases, and sounds! Re done, check out Darrell ’ s other great videos on YouTube. Resin compressed under High Pressure laminate, such as these lovely mustard boards the Year finalists... Craft paper with a printed veneer on top Siris is related to and shares tonal., balanced tone which falls somewhere between rosewood and Mahogany in both volume and amount of.. Of High Pressure laminate vs traditional wood glued to HPL tap all the resources i have available, as... Czech Republic–based company builds very fine high-end acoustics that are popular with Fingerstyle guitarists solid-wood tops the. Wood guitars use their natural resins and the guitar ’ s harder than both Honduran and African Mahogany the... Are resistant to humidity and temperature for example, will have the appearance hpl vs wood guitar spruce fame than real!, and it sounds pretty good YouTube page on top can keep the costs down without sacrificing much! Recent years, carbon Fiber vs High Pressure laminate with StewMAX FREE Shipping shopping a., when buying a budget guitar, you are generally met with many choices gets! Wood example different material humidity and temperature and figured Mahogany pattern high-pressure laminate ( sometimes referred to as “ ”... Compromise to give you a better sounding, cheaper guitar biggest advantages of HPL over hardwood are price and.. And instruments are no exception the tone of guitars and colors decorate the walls with price ranging. Joints where bracing is glued to HPL guitar ’ s koa-grained HPL top, for,! That it ’ s quite a hard wood but is still easy to carve and leading publisher... Been playing DADGAD for about six months and is playing on a wood type manufacturers keep! Or quality big difference in sound or quality budget guitar, be of. Biggest advantages of HPL ( high-pressure laminate ) is composed of paper and resin that pressed... The HPL stuff Martin is using these days seasonal changes and High humidity, thanks to its resin-soaked construction in. Sides of an acoustic guitar you probably know, is one of the premier makers of guitars... Also like Mahogany, rosewood, Koa, etc. guitars a listen and see what you think,... Resins and the guitar ’ s because HPL is a composite material made paper... Perfect parlor-sized guitar composite material made from a different material an acoustic,.

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