Exotic tonewoods with a voice that's bright and focused.
Hawaiian koa’s captivating beauty is matched by a tone that blossoms over time, especially in the midrange. Its voice is bright and focused, with warm overtones that slowly emerge, adding sweetness and depth. Premium all-wood appointments, led by the Island Vine fretboard inlay, celebrate the wood’s natural appeal.
Grand Auditorium (GA)
Body Length: 20" / Body Width: 16" / Body Depth: 4 5/8"
Taylor's most popular and versatile body shape, the mid-size Grand Auditorium arrived in 1994 bearing refined proportions that fell between a Dreadnought and Grand Concert. While the bigger Dreadnought was traditionally considered a flatpicker’s guitar and the smaller Grand Concert catered to fingerstylists, the GA was designed to deliver on both fronts. The shape produced an original acoustic voice that was big enough to handle medium-strength picking and strumming, yet with impressive balance across the tonal spectrum, especially in the midrange, producing clear, well-defined notes that suited both strumming and fingerstyle playing. The GA’s overall presence tracks well with other instruments both in a studio mix and on stage, and singer-songwriters have embraced its utility both for composing and traveling with one guitar. Many people want a single guitar that can cover a variety of styles, which is why the GA continues to be a bestselling shape. If you want a great all-purpose guitar, the multi-dimensional GA won’t let you down.
Origin: The Big Island of Hawaii
A tropical hardwood, koa's tone blends the midrange of mahogany with the top end of maple. Due to its density, a new koa guitar tends to start out sounding a little bright and tight, somewhat like maple. But the more a koa guitar is played, the more the sound opens up, expanding the midrange and rewarding the player with a richer, sweeter, more resonant tone. A common mistake is when a bright player buys a koa guitar in part for its visual beauty, finds it to be too bright, and doesn't play it enough to allow the wood to warm up.
Goes Well With: Fingerstylists who play more with the pads of their fingers and tend to have a meatier touch. Bright players need to be careful because of koa's existing brightness (one might try experimenting with different pick materials).
People love the clear, full acoustic tone of their Taylors. Why should it be any different when they plug in? That’s why Taylor spent several years developing their own onboard acoustic pickup and preamp. Taylor’s ground-breaking Expression System (ES) was designed to naturally amplify the warm acoustic sound of your guitar.
The ES is an all-magnetic acoustic guitar pickup system that works like a microphone to produce a pure signal and a warm, natural acoustic sound. When you plug in, you'll hear the sound of your guitar, not the sound of the pickup. No complicated controls. No tone simulators. Just a clean amplified acoustic guitar sound supported by three simple controls — volume, bass and treble.
Years of research brought Taylor to a simple realization: Nothing sounds as true and musical as a microphone. With that as a starting point, Taylor’s David Hosler led the team responsible for the Expression System's breakthrough technology. Utilizing a unique Dynamic Body Sensor mounted to the soundboard, a Dynamic String Sensor embedded beneath the fretboard, and a discrete preamp, the advanced ES technology is unlike any other guitar pickup system.
The ES was designed in-house, alongside their acoustic guitars, which allowed Taylor to build the ES seamlessly into the design of the guitar, for an integrated pickup system unlike any other. From the design and location of the body and string sensors to the voicing of the preamp, the ES is fully optimized for the Taylor sound. The elegant design, including the non-intrusive control knobs, also preserves the aesthetic of a Taylor guitar.