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cyber3d
10-02-2017, 09:06 PM
I recently watched a documentary on Elderly Instruments and in one of the interviews with their technician/craftsman he talked about how an acoustic stringed instrument sounds better as it gets older and played a lot. Wood ages and playing affects the wood and joints etc... making it a more desirable instrument. What do you think? Are you more likely to get a finer instrument if you find a well used ukulele?

kypfer
10-02-2017, 09:18 PM
The only "older" instruments that sound "better" are those that sounded "better" when they were new. The instruments that were never that good just didn't last ... were given to charity shops or for the kids to play with.

YMMV ;)

70sSanO
10-02-2017, 09:39 PM
No.

John

...

Croaky Keith
10-02-2017, 10:03 PM
Not in the way that I think you mean.
An instrument that has been played has settled in to where it is going to be for the rest of its life.
A new instrument goes through a settling in period, be it wood or laminate, just the same as strings do.
Once its done that, that is the best it is going to be.

JackLuis
10-03-2017, 01:59 AM
I have pondered this as my playing time has passe. A Uke that I didn't think sounded all that great when I got it, now is one I appreciate more and more each day. I think it's because I learned how to make it sound better by playing it more, or I got used to it's 'voice'.

As for Willi's Trigger, it has been repaired a good deal by a master luthier over the years and was a great instrument when new. Also Willy is a pretty good guitar picker!

PhilUSAFRet
10-03-2017, 02:14 AM
I have found that some ukes "grow" on me, and some don't. Does it sound better because it has aged or because I was able to detect subtle nuances in tone that weren't immediately apparent? I believe that with a "quality" instrument, there must be subtle changes with additional curing of bracing and tonewoods as it "settles in" so to speak. Just my thoughts on the matter. Lots of folks here far more experienced on the subject than I.

strumsilly
10-03-2017, 03:02 AM
Yes and no. The "good" ones tend to get played , so an old uke with no play wear is suspect. The wood has settled in so any warping/cracking will have sorted itself out. The older builders had some really nice wood to work with, hard to go wrong with an old Martin or Favilla.

ukantor
10-03-2017, 03:07 AM
"Other well know players keep the same guitar for a few years so you can follow its sound via recordings and videos".

When judging the sound of an instrument, I would be wary of any conclusions which are based on recordings. You are not hearing the true sound, but an electronic representation of that sound. Such representations will vary depending on the circumstances in which they were made, who made them, what equipment was used, and a host of other variables. A good instrument can be made to sound bad and vice versa.

All comparisons are fraught with difficulty, unless you are listening (live and unamplified) to the same player, standing in the same place, in the same room.

As regards "playing in". I find that a newly built uke will change quite noticeable over the first few days after the strings are first fitted, but after this fairly short settling period, it is hard to detect any more improvement.

Rllink
10-03-2017, 04:03 AM
What sounds better is subjective. Also, I think that there are a lot of factors that affect the sound of instrument. I think that Willie makes Trigger sound good, not the other way around. I mean, big holes worn into the soundboard of an instrument probably doesn't make the instrument sound "better."

spookelele
10-03-2017, 04:18 AM
I think sometimes an instrument changes.
And I think sometimes your ears change.
And I think sometimes you start to prefer what you're used to as your base line standard.

People often say "I know what I like" when what they really mean is "I like what I know".

Also an instrument doesn't always get better as it ages. Sometimes it gets worse.

Jake is an interesting example to think about... he changes his instrument fairly often, to a new one of the same model. It's not like the retired ones are falling apart, and every once in a while, you'll see one of his used ones go up for sale. I dunno if it was a donation situation or how it got into the wild, but I thought I saw one of his retired instruments up for auction at some point. (not his player model, one he actually toured with)

The way I see it... judge an instrument for what it is right now.
There's no way to really know if it will get better, or worse.

jimavery
10-03-2017, 05:19 AM
Personally I think this question is simply a matter of faith, and I'm not a believer.

jer
10-03-2017, 07:19 AM
It depends on the specific instrument and who you're asking.

hendulele
10-03-2017, 07:43 AM
All-solid instruments do tend to sound warmer as they're played more, so long as you keep them humidified. Laminates tend not to change because they're made of strips of plywood glued on top of one another. That doesn't mean a laminate won't "improve" to the owner over time as you get comfortable with it, of course.

http://ukeonomics.blogspot.com/2013/05/do-solid-wood-ukuleles-open-up-over-time.html

spookelele
10-03-2017, 10:43 AM
Theres tonerite.

It's a mechanical... gizmo for guitar.
You hook it up, and it vibrates the guitar/strings constantly for some period of time.
It's supposed to force things to open up.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZsRhNzdB-g8

skip to 4:33 for sound samples of before/after.

it does seem to sound different. But.. how much of that is because strings settling vs instrument settling... I dunno.

Ukulele Eddie
10-03-2017, 10:56 AM
I recently watched a documentary on Elderly Instruments and in one of the interviews with their technician/craftsman he talked about how an acoustic stringed instrument sounds better as it gets older and played a lot. Wood ages and playing affects the wood and joints etc... making it a more desirable instrument. What do you think? Are you more likely to get a finer instrument if you find a well used ukulele?

Our impressions are often colored by knowledge. But I agree with @kypfer, an instrument's potential is its potential. Mediocre instruments don't become "oh wow" due to age. Here is an interesting read:

https://www.thestrad.com/blind-tested-soloists-unable-to-tell-stradivarius-violins-from-modern-instruments/994.article

actadh
10-03-2017, 12:37 PM
My 1940's Silvertone in its day was likely comparable to today's entry price point all solid Kala or Ohana.

But, 70 years on, it is light as a feather, which it probably was not when bought off the shelf at Sears.

I agree with Bill1's post above - "it has to be played a lot to keep it alive." When I first uncase it after not playing it for a while, it sounds kind of crappy and I think about selling it. But, the more I play it, the better it sounds, until it has a resonance. It then has its own voice like the Opio or the Brueko. Have I just relearned how to get the best effect from the Silvertone? Perhaps, but I do think it needs to come back to life. And the fact that it has had so many years to dry out has also helped.

Choirguy
10-03-2017, 02:04 PM
The Blackbird Clara came to mind, and I thought it was worth mentioning in the thread. I have heard and played a number of exceptional instruments, and I would put the Clara with all of them, and they are basically brand new. That may be an extreme example, but it goes to show that you don’t need age or wood to have a good sounding ukulele.

hollisdwyer
10-03-2017, 03:03 PM
Most pro musicians that I know favour, well played older finely made instruments. However it is difficult to know the history of a 2nd hand instrument. Some old instruments that I've seen have required major TLC to return them to a playable state. Even for major production brands there have been periods in their history where market forces have seen corners being cut so generalities like brand should not overly influence your purchase decision. We are dealing with objects that are crafted from living materials and every example will be unique. IMO, you can only know if you have a good one by playing it.

70sSanO
10-03-2017, 06:34 PM
My personal opinion is that newer ukuleles are better made to closer tolerances and luthiers of high end ukuleles are probably better craftsmen than their vintage counterparts.

That said, I also feel that the wood being used today is not as high a quality as the wood available 50+ years ago. Preferred tone woods have depleted available resources and has driven more species onto the CITES list. But this has also opened up innovation in employing non-traditional ukulele tonewoods.

My vote still lies with newer builds as a preferred way to go over a well played vintage uke. Not to say that there are not special vintage ukes.

John

spookelele
10-04-2017, 05:56 AM
We are dealing with objects that are crafted from living materials and every example will be unique. IMO, you can only know if you have a good one by playing it.

That's a very good point.

Say martin makes 500 of a model every year for 50 years. Some of them will be meh, and a few will be exceptional. Someone lucks into that exceptional one and plays the crap out of it because its great. Then they die, and it comes up for sale. The guy that buys it, is like... wow... why is this so great? it's better than anything I can get today.

But then... some of those will also be duds... and nobody will talk about them, so they get forgotten to history, and someone will get a new one and be like.. this is better than those old ones.. because tech/shiny/etc

There's a kamaka documentary... and one of the guys interviewed says something like... and this ukulele is special.. and will never leave the island. There's variance, and some great ukes were made. But.. there were also some... less great. Always has been, always will be.

ukantor
10-04-2017, 08:49 AM
Here's a personal anecdote, for what it's worth (I suspect, not very much). I saw an old uke advertised about forty miles from my home. Went to look at it, and found the seller was a very old man who had owned it since he was twelve years of age. His parents had bought it for him as a birthday present. He told me the town and the name of the music store from wence it came. He had played this uke all his life, as evidenced by the prodigious amount of wear on the fretboard.

He was selling the uke because he was now very frail and was moving into an assisted living facility. He could no longer play, because of arthritic fingers, and the uke was in very poor condition. As soon as I saw it, I knew it was no use to me, but he wasn't asking much for it and I didn't wish to disappoint him.

It was quite the worst ukulele I have ever seen - atrociously made, of nasty materials, with horribly ornate decorations very badly applied. Presumably, he never knew what is was like to play a good ukulele.

I fixed it up so that it was playable (just) but it sounded awful. A friend took it off my hands as a kitsch curiosity to hang on the wall.

Hilomar
10-04-2017, 09:24 AM
Here's a personal anecdote, for what it's worth (I suspect, not very much). I saw an old uke advertised about forty miles from my home. Went to look at it, and found the seller was a very old man who had owned it since he was twelve years of age. His parents had bought it for him as a birthday present. He told me the town and the name of the music store from wence it came. He had played this uke all his life, as evidenced by the prodigious amount of wear on the fretboard.

He was selling the uke because he was now very frail and was moving into an assisted living facility. He could no longer play, because of arthritic fingers, and the uke was in very poor condition. As soon as I saw it, I knew it was no use to me, but he wasn't asking much for it and I didn't wish to disappoint him.

It was quite the worst ukulele I have ever seen - atrociously made, of nasty materials, with horribly ornate decorations very badly applied. Presumably, he never knew what is was like to play a good ukulele.

I fixed it up so that it was playable (just) but it sounded awful. A friend took it off my hands as a kitsch curiosity to hang on the wall.
Think I would have kept that uke as s mark of respect to the old gentleman who had played it all his life! A much loved ukulele is a beautiful thing..I hope your friend is appreciating it..if it were me who came across this uke, I would have spent money on it and given it pride of place amongst my uke family..it's called respecting the past...or maybe I'm too sentimental? This modern throw away society leaves me cold!

Dansimpson
10-04-2017, 10:07 AM
Better is such a subjective word....I am new to ukes, but have played guitar for over 40 years, in my humble experience what sounds good to you may well be crap to others. i have tried £5K plus guitars and hated the sound, but established players love them, use them, others lust after them.
I have tried ones costing a few pounds and been pleased with the sound they make.
More to the point, if it feels right in your hands, then you are more likely to enjoy playing it, and it may sound good to you. As for age, well, the longer I have an instrument, the more likely I will learn how to get a good sound out of it.
There is no doubt in my mind that instruments do change as they age, but I would say its not them that sound better, just my ability to play it.
An interesting experiment a few years ago with guitars, some established players asked to do a blindfold test, classic fenders and gibsons that were over 40yrs old, and new "aged" instruments, most preferred the new ones.....

hollisdwyer
10-04-2017, 04:25 PM
That's a very good point.

Say martin makes 500 of a model every year for 50 years. Some of them will be meh, and a few will be exceptional. Someone lucks into that exceptional one and plays the crap out of it because its great. Then they die, and it comes up for sale. The guy that buys it, is like... wow... why is this so great? it's better than anything I can get today.

But then... some of those will also be duds... and nobody will talk about them, so they get forgotten to history, and someone will get a new one and be like.. this is better than those old ones.. because tech/shiny/etc

There's a kamaka documentary... and one of the guys interviewed says something like... and this ukulele is special.. and will never leave the island. There's variance, and some great ukes were made. But.. there were also some... less great. Always has been, always will be.

Your mention of Martin Guitars tweeked a memory of mine. In the Summer of 1960 I turned 15 and saved every penny from my Summer job to buy my first good guitar. The store I went to in downtown NYC had 12 or so versions of the one I could afford, an 016 New Yorker. The man at at the store said son, there are a dozen of these up in the attic. Go upstairs and play them all. Come down with the one that you think is the best. It was a very nice guitar that that I chose and was played very often. John Sebastian, of the Loving Spoonfuls play that guitar one day and told me never to sell it (of course I did when I was bumming around Europe and got sick of squeezing into the backseat of VW Beetles with it in its hardcase while hitchhiking). I had a friend who purchased the same model about 10 months later. They were like chalk and cheese.

So I guess the point of the story is that the universe is chaotic and that there is a lot of uncertainty. Adjust you expectation accordingly.

ukantor
10-04-2017, 09:49 PM
"Think I would have kept that uke as s mark of respect to the old gentleman who had played it all his life!"

Every time I looked at it, I felt profoundly sad that he had spent so much time and effort playing something that was atrociously poor. I just hope the rest of his life was more fulfilling.

ukantor
10-05-2017, 10:14 AM
Somebody sure played it a heck of a lot. Their fingernails had dug craters in the fretboard, by the first three frets. The old fella was far too ingenuous to make it up. On the other hand, I could be fabricating the whole saga.

Except that I'm not.

warndt
10-05-2017, 01:56 PM
Are older, well used ukuleles better?

I think that they are like people... so no.

ukantor
10-05-2017, 07:56 PM
And people are like ukuleles - as they get older they might not always become better, but they are more interesting - sometimes.:rolleyes:

kkimura
10-06-2017, 11:51 AM
I believe there's a bit of Darwinism at work here. Those great sounding old instruments are those that survived due to qualities that kept them out of the scrap heap. Nobody goes to any great length to keep a poor sounding instrument. It's the outstanding ones that have the best chance of surviving.

Ukecaster
10-06-2017, 12:53 PM
I believe there's a bit of Darwinism at work here. Those great sounding old instruments are those that survived due to qualities that kept them out of the scrap heap. Nobody goes to any great length to keep a poor sounding instrument. It's the outstanding ones that have the best chance of surviving.

Yeah, but I bet there's also plenty that just sat in someone's closet, but are just meh.

mm stan
10-06-2017, 02:01 PM
Thats a loaded queztion, Wood maturity is only one factor in a uke to sound good, quality of wood, quality of build,
Having a good Luthier and materials before you add in wood maturity into the equation. A bad sounding uke will always sound bad...if you had said after decades of playing to season the wood..it could improve well wish hard
Alot of people think their ukes have improved in the years don't take account they have improved too.
Another factor is higher quality higher end uke such as martin used higher grade of woods back then, which may
be a reason foe some ukes COULD, improve with maturity being seasoned. However if you had a tourist uke and
Waited 60 years, it probably WOULD sound the same subpar tone...

Nickie
10-06-2017, 02:02 PM
I just can't help but chime in. I've sold pretty old ukes that just did not sound good to me at all. I've sold some late model ukes that I thought sounded pretty crappy too. I've sold ukes that I no longer played because they brought memories I wanted to lose.
I think I've kept the best 2 I've ever had, and one gets played every day, unless I feel rotten. Then I just hold it.
Of course, the more I play it, the better it sounds, but that may be a factor of my playing improving a little each day. Hopefully.
I don't keep what I don't like, no matter what stories are behind it. I like Booli's expression "hedging into minimalism."
I have one uke I'd just as soon throw onto a campfire, but it's too darn pretty to look at. Reminds me not to waste money on impulse buying.

Ukecaster
10-06-2017, 05:07 PM
I guess that, like people, there's good and bad ones of all ages. I just took the Tonerite off my lapel, I haven't opened up yet, although I'm already well seasoned! ;)

cyber3d
10-12-2017, 08:57 PM
Ah ha! I found the text that got me post this thread in the first place:

Acacia (Also look under "Black Acacia" and "Koa".)
Keep in mind that there are 1300 species of Acacias, spread all over the world, and that even experts may have difficulty in telling them apart. Many do not grow large enough to be used for guitars. But for our purposes, their similarities are far greater than their differences. That does not mean they are all identical, but it may be hard to differentiate between them and make generalities that transcend the inherent differences caused by a luthier's particular build methods and the individual differences n a piece of wood of the same species.

From the Pono Website - "As for tonal comparisons to Mahogany, the Acacia family (including Acacia Koa) is different in weight and density. Mahogany is lighter and less dense, and thus produces not only a warm tone, but a unique tonal clarity and open brilliance. And in time, Mahogany changes in color and tone more than any other wood we have experienced. For those who own vintage mahogany guitars and ‘ukuleles, the aged tone is unsurpassable.

Acacia is heavier and more dense than Mahogany, and thus has it’s own unique tonal projection. And of course a beauty all it’s own. Most people are familiar with the sound of Acacia woods, having owned or played instruments made of Hawaiian Koa. All Acacia woods are similar. The Acacia that we use for our Pono instruments is similar in appearance to what was known to old timers in Hawaii as “black Koa.”

For lack of a better description, Acacia wood produces what could be called a deep woody tone. ... Acacia Preta does lack the rich red color tones of Acacia Koa, but still has beautiful black and brown figured grain patterns. "

Mivo
10-12-2017, 09:35 PM
I agree with those who say that old, much played instruments were good instruments all along, and that this is why they survived all this time.

Besides this, though, my 1920s Lyon&Healy mahogany soprano feels and sounds different than modern mahogany sopranos. The age of the wood may contribute to this, but it was likely also built differently than most instruments are crafted now. The "vintage sound" is probably part material and part construction. There is also the psychological component: the "mojo" that old, well-played instruments ooze is an inspiring motivator that contributes to the experience. Brandnew instruments "feel" a little soulless.

Croaky Keith
10-12-2017, 10:26 PM
I think there could be another side to this, in the past, the trees that were used were likely very old themselves.
The woods we use are just plain different, young against old, because we harvest them more quickly, and, in the past wood was dried naturally, which took time, 3 years wasn't uncommon, whilst nowadays we kiln dry it, all this must affect its tonal quality.

Rllink
10-13-2017, 05:37 AM
A lot of my friends are into vintage stuff. I think that for them it is the fact that they are holding a piece of history in their hands. I would guess that people who like vintage ukes feel the same way. It is fun to try to imagine who played them and where. It isn't about the sound in their own basement or living room, or wherever they play it, it is about imagining that sound somewhere else at another time in history, and in a different context, that makes it sound so good.

EDW
10-13-2017, 06:36 AM
I think there could be another side to this, in the past, the trees that were used were likely very old themselves.
The woods we use are just plain different, young against old, because we harvest them more quickly, and, in the past wood was dried naturally, which took time, 3 years wasn't uncommon, whilst nowadays we kiln dry it, all this must affect its tonal quality.

That is the same issue with clarinets and oboes. Less good wood and they hurry the process. As to ukes, I used to wonder about the whole vintage thing until I had the opportunity to play some. A few that I had tried had a resonance, depth and ring unlike anything I had heard from some fine modern luthier built instruments. It made me rethink the issue. I am not sure why they sounded that much better. Perhaps some of the new instruments will sound even better in another 75 years.

I am not firmly in one camp or the other. A great instrument is a a great instrument. There have been some amazing things made in all eras. some from years ago were mediocre, while some today are fantastic. I would say you have to judge each instrument on its own merits, not by the brand or year.

Despite all that, in the hands of a great player even a meh instrument sounds pretty darned good.

spongeuke
10-13-2017, 07:34 PM
MY preference is for the older ukuleles. The wood that was used 70 years ago is generally superior to what is common today. Wood does settle in (good) glue hardens and cracks (not good). What is not taken in is the care and even rebuilds a true vintage ukulele will go through. Subjectively I prefer the older instruments and accept that its history will vary, however I love to rebuild these old gems.
This thread reminds me of a decision I made several years ago. I had a fairly new Larrivee in Koa and Spruce, It did every thing well. But I found myself playing a beat-up Martin or a modified Regal (Redwood sound board). The Larrivee got traded away and I do miss it but the vintage Martins have my heart.

Graham Greenbag
10-13-2017, 08:31 PM
I believe there's a bit of Darwinism at work here. Those great sounding old instruments are those that survived due to qualities that kept them out of the scrap heap. Nobody goes to any great length to keep a poor sounding instrument. It's the outstanding ones that have the best chance of surviving.

I feel sure that the above is the case and that it is true of so many other things. Some cars are restored and others forgotten, many songs have been written but only a comparative few do we sing today, much classical music will have been written but only some survives, beautiful jewellery has been made but only the best and not out of fashion escapes recycling.

Were all things built better years ago? I don’t believe so but to an extent they were built differently in that markets were more local and reputations were built and lost over longer periods than is now the case; and the technology surrounding design and construction has changed in so far as different materials are available and technical analysis is more available.

As an associated topic the way that we feel towards and interact with instruments is interesting, there is a feeling towards provenance (association with history) and maybe something else too. I have two Ukes that, in terms of design and age since manufacture, are effectively father and son. The old one had seen years of service before coming to me, it needed a tidy-up and the sound board is bowed; for reasons I can only guess at and not understand it ‘calls’ to me to be played in a stronger way than the ‘better’ younger one. Why is that, is it an association with provenance or something else? It’s strange to me but it seems to me that artefacts can sometimes absorb and give off something(s) immeasurable, illogical and mostly unnoticed that interacts with us. I don’t understand it, don’t particularly see or feel it or them - the same could be said about tv and radio waves - and it’s wacky. However, a one time everyone believed that the world was flat and that there was something wrong with you if you didn’t too. Because it often isn’t the case I think it best to never assume that our understanding of the world is either complete or accurate. Maybe there is something different about some old instruments that we aren’t yet aware of?

zztush
10-13-2017, 11:21 PM
The important thing is how we test it.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ptciFcVQPik

Compare low quality new instrument with high quality well used one. Even both are new ones they should have a difference, hence we can expect far difference here. We just can tell the difference by ourselves now.

cyber3d
10-14-2017, 10:00 AM
The important thing is how we test it.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ptciFcVQPik

Compare low quality new instrument with high quality well used one. Even both are new ones they should have a difference, hence we can expect far difference here. We just can tell the difference by ourselves now.

Interesting. But, I think it is a false test. Besides, solid body wood guitars don't age like an acoustic body guitar. Here the electronics and string manufacture play a much more pivotal role in the sound quality.

If one watches the video documentary on Elderly Instruments, they talk about how an acoustic guitar's wood changes over time. And so, when played (vibrational affect on the wood over time and I say the specific playing style), changes in the environment such as humidity, temperature and the effect on sound as wood shrinks and expands, changes to the glue on the seams, etc...

I think, and I agree with most, that garbage in = garbage out. A crappy ukulele to begin with will never be a great ukulele in time. But, a very good and fine ukulele may just improve over time.

Nickie
10-14-2017, 10:39 AM
Doesn't one electric solid body guitar pretty much sound like another? Isn't it the pre-amp and the player's skill that make a difference?

spookelele
10-14-2017, 05:20 PM
Solid body instruments can have different sounds. If you go into a store and play the ten fenders or gibsons they have on the wall, all the same model, play them a bit loud, you can pick one out you like from the rest.

Im skeptical about the sound difference being from the wood on a solid body electric. It's probably differences in the coil builds, soldering, shielding, how close the pickup is to the string, stuff like that. Because electric guitars don't pickup at bridge, they pickup at the pickup and they're being triggered by the string vibration, not the body vibration like an undersaddle.

70sSanO
10-14-2017, 08:39 PM
Actually the test wasn't between an real '59 Strat and a new Squire, it was a new reissue '59. And except for some slight differences in playability between cheap and expensive, the real differences are in the components, finish quality and where it was made. At one time good vintage electrics were considered grail instruments because of the feel and the perceived "aged" pickups on a particular guitar. For a long time it was tough to duplicate a vintage sound, but today reissues are better than the originals.

As others have said, acoustics are different. As so many have said a great ukulele is great no matter how old or new. One question that hasn't been asked is on what day is it better? Might sound odd, but there are some days when one of my ukes sound perfect like everything in the universe aligned. But at other times that magical sound is gone, still sounds good, but not quite as good. I imagine it has to do with the environment of humidity, temperature, etc. that causes it. Funny, but my playing seems better on those days.

John

Ukecaster
10-15-2017, 07:41 AM
..... One question that hasn't been asked is on what day is it better? Might sound odd, but there are some days when one of my ukes sound perfect like everything in the universe aligned. But at other times that magical sound is gone, still sounds good, but not quite as good. I imagine it has to do with the environment of humidity, temperature, etc. that causes it. Funny, but my playing seems better on those days.

I agree, the sound can vary from day to day. Might also have something to do with the environment between our ears? ;)

Mivo
10-15-2017, 03:21 PM
I imagine it has to do with the environment of humidity, temperature, etc. that causes it. Funny, but my playing seems better on those days.

Location, too. There are spots in my home where my instruments sound better due to how soundwaves are reflected (or not).

DownUpDave
10-19-2017, 12:56 AM
Location, too. There are spots in my home where my instruments sound better due to how soundwaves are reflected (or not).

Agreed. Solorule insists my dining has the best acoustic ever. She said she wants to buy my dining room instead of another ukulele cause everything sounds good there.

There is also what I call fussy ear, some days I strongly dislike a certain tone. It can be a uke that I really love but it just doesn't sound right to me on that particular day. This is the perfect rationale for owning multiple ukes. Bright sounding, warm sounding, loud, soft and sweet, you'll find one you like that day.

PTOEguy
10-19-2017, 05:55 AM
This is also much debated in violin circles. Recent blind test have found that the perceived Stradavarius advantage is just that - "perceived"
http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/05/million-dollar-strads-fall-modern-violins-blind-sound-check

That said, my mahogany pono baritone sounds better all the time, but I think that is more to do with the player getting his act together than anything else.

cyber3d
10-19-2017, 08:58 AM
This is also much debated in violin circles. Recent blind test have found that the perceived Stradavarius advantage is just that - "perceived"
http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/05/million-dollar-strads-fall-modern-violins-blind-sound-check

That said, my mahogany pono baritone sounds better all the time, but I think that is more to do with the player getting his act together than anything else.

Yeah! So, my C.A. Götz Jr violin is a keeper!!!! or maybe I should get one of those $132,000.00 fiddles LOL