Best guitar design? Your thoughts; - Jemsite
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-17-2007, 10:22 AM Thread Starter
 
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Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

Y'know in terms of pure design - so from a playing point of view only, nothing to do with aesthetics or personal preference with regard to the look of guitar, what guitar do you think is the best available? Points to consider are;
Upper fret access - so, body design.
Electrics and hardware quality - for example does the jack socket go loose over time? Does the finish tarnish easily and does that bother you? Is feedback a problem? Does the p/up selecter make intrusive noise when swapping between p/ups during playing? Perhaps you think fewer controls are better? Please explain why if so? How well does the vibrato system perform (if there is one installed), can you do just as you like with the bar without risk of tuning problems or are you limited in what you can do with it? How easy to use is the vibrato system? so, can you play any technique while holding the bar with your third and little fingers without this being intrusive or do you have to let go of the bar to be able to palm mute for example?
Range of sounds available - so pickup selection etc
Ease of playing - so, pulling off string bends as wide as a step and a half without choking anywhere on the fret board, how the neck profile affects vibrato, fast shredding/sweeping, holding chords without your hand tiring, the guitars natural sustain etc etc. Also consider how fast the fret wire wears and how good the fret work is levelled from the factory - buzzy spots are unacceptable. Body contouring for comfort, depth of cutouts, overall weight and balance should all be considered.

I think Ibanez' jem/RG design is best in terms of pure function. What do you think is better and why?
Please don't use character, soul, or mojo as reasons for something being better - i'm asking about physical, solid reasons for why you think a design is the best. Your choice may not actually be your favourite type of guitar for this reason - that's cool if it is the case.

Thanks in advance for your opinions!
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-17-2007, 10:34 AM
Dee
 
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

Playability, I think maybe something like Suhr? I have never actually played one, though. As for design, that's a really hard question because there are so many great guitars out there. I can't answer without playing more guitars!
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-17-2007, 10:35 AM
 
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

My Jem is the best guitar I've ever played because it excels in all the area's you mentioned. Before I found Ibanez it was Fender Strats, which I still think are the best guitars ever made (before "superstrats came along, that is).
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-17-2007, 10:39 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

Does anyone have experience of Suhr's designs and why they might be better than anything else? I know Reb Beach has a nice looking Suhr and he used to have a signature voyager so maybe he thinks they are better. Guthrie Govan has a Suhr too doesn't he?
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-17-2007, 11:22 AM
 
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

The Suhr's sure look nice.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-17-2007, 11:24 AM
 
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

Every guitar is different too so some of your questions are pretty hard to address. Two identical model Jems, or Strats, or LP's, won't sound and behave exactly like each other, although if setup to your specs they should at least play and feel very close. I'm sure you already considered that.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-18-2007, 06:12 AM
 
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

I think PRS have it pretty good. Ive never had problems with upper fret access, the electronics are awsome, especially the neck pickup I dont think I would ever swap it out. Vibrato system is pretty nice, and the action is great really easy to play on. Also for me the volume control is in the perfect spot i have no problems flicking my hand to kill the volume I love it!
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-18-2007, 07:59 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

Quote:
Originally Posted by supermau View Post
Every guitar is different too so some of your questions are pretty hard to address. Two identical model Jems, or Strats, or LP's, won't sound and behave exactly like each other, although if setup to your specs they should at least play and feel very close. I'm sure you already considered that.
Yeah but differences in the wood that affect the instrument's individual sound and things like set up preference are subjective - which is what i want to avoid, take two identical jems - say there is an audible difference in the sound of each when plugged into the same rig, the one that sounds better to me might sound worse to you for example. But in function they are identical if setup the same. Again this can be subjective because what plays well in my opinion might be too compromised in other areas for you.

The lines i'm thinking on is compare an LP to a jem; the jem's design makes it easier to access the 24th fret than it is to access the 21st on an LP. The LP is heavier, has fewer p/up switching options, fewer frets, no vibrato system, a thicker neck (though neck profile seems to be quite subjective too, so not sure how to address this area...), thicker body, its expensive for its spec etc - i don't own one, i've only played other people's LPs briefly, so i don't know about day to day living with it type problems like how well it holds its tuning or how useful the controls are. Its definitely not as capable a design as the jem but it shouldn't be expected to be because of its age - has anyone got anything to add?

What do you think of none locking vibrato systems?
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-18-2007, 08:29 PM
 
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

I'd have to say it's a Jem. I love the tone of a Les Paul, but a lot of that could be transferred to the Jem with a change of wood selection and pickup selection. It wouldn't be EXACTLY the same, and we've had that discussion here before, but it would be close enough. In terms of playability and ease of maintenance, I do miss my old Stratocaster's bridge to some degree. The string height was individually adjustable, the intonation could be easily adjusted, and the strings simply loaded "as is" right through the back of the guitar. It required very little in the "care and feeding" department. Otherwise, the Jem is just about completely perfect. I'll probably buy more of them as time goes on.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-18-2007, 08:46 PM
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

Quote:
Originally Posted by Satchriossi View Post
Does anyone have experience of Suhr's designs and why they might be better than anything else?
BTW, when I mentioned Suhr above it was mainly from a playability standpoint, not the desgn. As far as the Suhr designs go, I'm not all that impressed, but just going on what friends and various others who own a Suhr are saying, the playability is supposedly awesome. Or "eerily perfect" as Guthrie Govan put it. Having never owned a Suhr, I don't know, but I'd like to find out!

I'm impressed with Driskill's level of detail and quality of construction. Does anyone here own one?
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-18-2007, 08:55 PM
 
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

You have to remember both the Les Paul and the Stratocaster were designed in the 50's. The Stratocaster was definitely designed for great access, comfort (weight and body contour) and broad tonal variation considering the time period. The Les Paul was designed to allow the wood characteristics to enhance tonal quality while still allowing access to the upper frets all the while giving a player better sustain and yet still offering a jazzier tone when needed.

You have to remember these guitars were designed long before technical acrobatics on the fretboard was the big thing. Soloing was not as big part of songwriting at the time.

Now how you could begin to compare a super-strat (JEM included) or a PRS to those originals is kinda out in left field wouldn't you say? Both of these guitars are simply refinements of first classic solid body guitars made available. Both super-strat and PRS were designed with soloing in mind as a fundamental element of playing.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 01-18-2007, 09:23 PM
 
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Re: Best guitar design? Your thoughts;

Well, it's fit for purpose really - the perfect design for each player is a different thing, but in terms of examining the conventional Electric guitar and fixing all of its shortcomings, what Ken Parker did with the Fly is pretty amazing - sounds and feels amazing, and has a non-locking trem that withstands incredible abuse - weighs nothing, which is kind of cool, because what you save in Chiropractic bills helps pay for a pretty expensive axe!
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dual sound , electric guitar , fender strat , fender strats , fret access , fret board , fret wire , guthrie govan , jack socket , les paul , neck pickup , palm mute , pickup selection , upper fret , upper fret access , upper frets

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