Not only is the rare quilted sapele used for this series visually different from the sapele used elsewhere in the Taylor line, its tonal response is also distinctive. These flatsawn sets have more fle... Read More
Not only is the rare quilted sapele used for this series visually different from the sapele used elsewhere in the Taylor line, its tonal response is also distinctive. These flatsawn sets have more flex, which translates into greater power and warmth on the low end. A premium European spruce top is the perfect complement, blending elements of Adirondack spruce’s robust output (thanks in part to Adirondack spruce bracing on four of the steel-string models, including this one) with a hint of cedar’s warmth. Quilted sapele and ivoroid appointments, including a diamond “Solitaire” inlay scheme, add elegant sophistication to the guitar.
Grand Symphony (GS)
Body Length: 20" / Body Width: 16-1/4" / Body Depth: 4-5/8"
The ultimate Taylor strummer
The Grand Symphony shape joined the line in 2006 and delivers a rich, powerful acoustic voice. Think of it as a Grand Auditorium with a turbo boost, thanks to expanded physical dimensions, including a slightly wider waist and a bigger lower bout. Strummers and pickers with a driving attack will love the fullness, volume and sustain. Yet for such a robust voice, the GS is also clear and responsive to fast picking runs or a light fingerstyle touch, so if you’re a dynamic player, this shape is a true contender. And the big voice doesn’t come at the expense of balance. The piano-like bass, meaty midrange, and thick, shimmering highs blend seamlessly. These traits also make the GS a great vehicle for 12-strings. If you like a lush, potent guitar tone that has the horsepower to compete with other acoustic cannons out there, the GS shape is a worthy choice.
Origin: West Africa
In contrast to the relatively straight-grained sapele used for backs and sides in Taylor’s 300 Series, quilted sapele is an extremely rare and precious find. Rare enough that years can pass between appearances. While standard sapele is normally quartersawn, which contributes to its overall stiffness, quilted sapele is often flatsawn. This not only allows the beautiful figure to be showcased to maximum effect, it also produces more flex in the wood. This translates tonally into slightly more power and warmth than standard sapele, which typically has a mahogany-like tone with a more pronounced treble zing.
Goes well with: Most playing styles. Like standard sapele, it’s a great all-purpose tonewood that will respond well to a variety of playing styles. If you like mahogany, you’ll like this tone profile. Strummers will appreciate the extra power in the lower midrange, while fingerstylists will enjoy the warmth.
People love the clear, full acoustic tone of their Taylors. Why should it be any different when they plug in? That’s why several years were spent developing the 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 Taylor's acoustic guitars, which allowed them 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.
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