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Thread: Real or Imagined?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Real or Imagined?

    Can a very inexpensive guitar "improve with age and usage" much the same as a finer one? I got myself a classical guitar via Amazon about 5 weeks ago; the brand name is ADM ("All Day Music"), and it was under a hundred dollars. I had to knock back some sharp fret ends, and the fret board looked a little thirsty so I cleaned and conditioned it with one of my trusty Ernie Ball fret board wipes, and I also changed the strings. At first, I found this guitar to be just kind of "so-so", although the neck was decently set and the action and intonation were fine. The sound was okay, but nothing to write home about. But today, 5 weeks later, after playing the devil out of it, I felt an awareness, as I did another string change, that 1) the guitar seems to feel much more comfortable in my hands than when I first got it; and 2) the guitar's tone seems to have taken on a warmth and a "tightness" that is very pleasant to my ear, and which wasn't present in the first couple of weeks. In fact, I like the sound so much, and the guitar feels so good to hold, that I no longer feel the urge to look for something more "upscale". Has anyone else experienced this with a budget instrument?

  2. #2
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    Interesting way to look at it, Bill1 !! Thanks !!

  3. #3

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    Fresh string effect?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davoravo View Post
    Fresh string effect?
    Well, Davoravo, you may have a point there! Actually, I didn't start to experience the improved tone and solid feel until I had pretty well played the first self-installed set of strings into a spaghetti-like consistency, and I'm sure they had absorbed dirt and oil despite my regularly wiping them off, but maybe what's at play here is simply that the strings sound more mellow and feel more familiar after they're well-played than when they're fresh out of the package. But I also can't help thinking that, overall, a brand new guitar will eventually feel and sound better after it's been "well-broken-in" by weeks and weeks of dedicated practice and play. Maybe it's all in my head, I admit...

  5. #5
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    One thing I noticed about new guitars and ukuleles is they always sound better after being tuned up to pitch for a week or so. While under full tension, the soundboard flexes and conforms into an optimal shape for tone production. On some instruments you'll notice dropouts and wolf tones come and go as the instrument acclimates. Plus, they're often a little louder even after only 24 hours of being up to pitch.

  6. #6
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    I agree, Peter. I even find that a guitar or ukulele will sound better after twenty minutes or so of playing than when I first pick it up and begin to play. It's almost as if it "warms up" to the body and hands of the player. Perhaps this is just a matter of "player perception", but I experience it over and over.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
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    Hey Bill congrats on the new guitar. It is always a pleasant surprise when an inexpensive instrument surpasses our expectations. I looked up this guitar and the one I saw had a solid spruce top, that would contribute to the playing in theory along with the fact it is brand new. Peter makes a good point about the strings putting everything under pressure. Most luthiers say you see the biggest change/improvement in sound with in the first month.

    Keep on playing it and enjoying it. That’s the most important thing regardless of cost or name brand
    Last edited by DownUpDave; 08-12-2019 at 03:51 AM.
    Currently enjoying these ukuleles : *LdfM tenor, *LfdM 19" super tenor. *LfdM baritone, *I'iwi tenor , *Koolau tenor, *Webber tenor, *Kimo tenor, *Kimo super concert, *Mya Moe baritone, *Kamaka baritone, *Gianinni baritone, *Fred Shields super soprano, *Kala super soprano, *Loprinzi super soprano, *Black bear ULO concert , *Enya X1 concert, *Enya X1 pineapple soprano, *Gretsch tenor, *Korala plastic concert

  8. #8
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    CT
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    Guitars mojo can change and improve in time. But at the same time low quality is low quality. That is just a fact.

    I now invest in higher quality for I found the ease of playing to the sound makes a huge difference.

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