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Do heavier guitars *REALLY* sustain longer?

Messages
93
All these debates, heavy/dense guitars sustaining more, wood of the guitar affecting tone etc, unfortunately it's a case of once again - those who know versus those who don't know. IE, discussing it on a public forum as downright combative as this one is a waste of time, as proven by the record of these types of forum fights. Get a few guitars, have a listen, make some judgements for yourself. if you can't make a judgement, that simply means - keep trying to know. Keep listening. If I told you what i know, it would be an absolute waste of time as someone would counter it with frankly something bizarre. If it were me, I would ask these questions on a luthiers forum if there is such a thing, Your answer, for what it is worth you knowing it, would appear ..definitive and unchallenged. Those guys don't throw ridiculous claims around, their community would never let them live it down.
 

pinkfloyd

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
422
No. My Tom Anderson's hollow T is 5.1lbs and it has more sustain than the heavier ones (LP standard, Suhr Standard).
 

Surfreak

Member
Messages
2,136
There is a dark well of conjectures, ill-informed opinions, heated arguments, that keeps dragging so many esteemed TGP members down to its bottomless depths.

So here is my knotted rope, for those who wish to climb up and see the light: there are many things we can’t quite explain.
But what we do know is that there are guitars that sustain more, and others that sustain less. Seek, and you shall find.
 
Messages
93
The irony is that it just doesn't matter, even if it feels like it does matter.
If somebody is speculating , then that person doesn't need to know.
It's like a person asking about one particular part of a puzzle, whether it be the specific output of a Pratt & Whitney turbofan engine or the growth rate of Seattle grown Alder.
The information means very little to nothing except to someone that needs to know.
This information, this guitar information..means nothing unless you hear it. You have to hear it. When you can hear it, it all becomes very clear indeed, at least from the players needs perspective. Everything else, the whole ego based arguing for the sake of it and repeating other peoples BS is, I have learnt, a total waste of everyones time.
A lot of people want to know the ' hidden' information, the voodoo secrets..because that's the nature of people, they want to know things. In my opinion, they're asking for the wrong reasons, either you feel it, hear it or you don't.
 

Fenderbaum

Member
Messages
55
To me its about a combination of many things. Very little so the wood.
Good nut cut, Soft material kills resonance. Therefore Bone nut will maintain a oscillating string better.
bridge sadles angle. How tremolo/bridges are hooked up / springs.. I am working down the chain here.
Name of the game is a good oscillating string and pickup height. But good pickup height is useless if a string cant resonate free.
Second. Resonance transfer. If something in between a string and body will not play the game and resonate in unison and rather work as a hindrance, that is a killer.
But it all starts with the end to end point of your string.
 

MikeMcK

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,919
Listen to the guys trying to tell you that stiffness is what matters... how little the nut moves relative to the bridge. Yes, there's a correlation because heavy bodies tend to be stiffer, but weight is a side effect, not the cause.
 

hunter

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,560
The irony is that it just doesn't matter, even if it feels like it does matter.
If somebody is speculating , then that person doesn't need to know.
It's like a person asking about one particular part of a puzzle, whether it be the specific output of a Pratt & Whitney turbofan engine or the growth rate of Seattle grown Alder.
The information means very little to nothing except to someone that needs to know.
This information, this guitar information..means nothing unless you hear it. You have to hear it. When you can hear it, it all becomes very clear indeed, at least from the players needs perspective. Everything else, the whole ego based arguing for the sake of it and repeating other peoples BS is, I have learnt, a total waste of everyones time.
A lot of people want to know the ' hidden' information, the voodoo secrets..because that's the nature of people, they want to know things. In my opinion, they're asking for the wrong reasons, either you feel it, hear it or you don't.
Feeling and hearing it are far less reliable than understanding it.
 

edward

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,433
So why, exactly, are so many people fixated on sustain, and why is more of it better?

Yeah, old guy here who has been around this block, and other neighborhoods, and I still don't get why players get tonal tunnel vision. Scratch that: I do get it, but have long grown past it. Some would call it maturing, others simply getting old ...LOL! ;)

Edward
 

Gclef

Member
Messages
2,485
So sick of YouTube. That guy’s full of it.
"Today I'm going to compare my ibanez rg to my strat" please comment it the section below to tell me which you liked better....."

Ever notice how he likes everything he reviews.
Never a bad thing said.

That gets tired after a while.

He seems so fake too. Like a phony persona.

He's probably a scumbag jerk in real life.

I amuse myself with thoughts of him losing his **** when messing up while recording his drivel.

His wife stops in and asks if everything is ok. To which he throws something at the door.

Yes, I have a vivid imagination
 

HoboMan

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
17,273
So sick of YouTube. That guy’s full of it.
He probably makes A LOT of money of clickbait controversial videos. Sensationalism sells.
When I retire I'll probably jump on the bandwagon. Some videos that are already on my list to make:

  • Do you really need a neck on a guitar?
  • Why you should have 20 pickups on your guitar.
  • This one tip will improve your playing 800% in 4 seconds.
  • How to bring your guitar to work an play it without your boss noticing.
  • Why you actually only need 3 frets on a guitar.
  • This one guitar lick will get you laid - GUARANTEED!
 
Messages
93
Feeling and hearing it are far less reliable than understanding it.
Without any disrespect intended, this makes no practical sense.
From the musical perspective, hearing it is all that matters.
From the ' oh well what can entertain me on a whimsical level'..understanding it could be important, and absolutely useless otherwise apart from the aforementioned use to MAKE AND PLAY MUSIC.
An irony in what you've said is that you simply can not understand it without hearing it first, as the theories people are throwing around are so wild, misleading and varied- understanding it by figuring it out without hearing would almost like be winning the lottery.
What is happening is that the longer this interesting but actually quite silly argument goes on, the more crazy the theories are getting. and the whole time those who know, hear what's going on, crystal clear, as the longer time goes past the point they starting hearing it, the more they hear. it really is extraordinary every time you hear something new pop up, a few repeats to confirm, and you (I) have another block of data/sound to remember.
Another irony is all a person has to do is play, and play some more, then change guitars then play, and play some more for a couple of years? ...and then they will hear it too, unless there is some kind of other impediment which I'm not qualified to discuss.
What I think is going on is that there is a lot of looking at guitars going on, and not much playing.
 
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Tone_Terrific

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
32,101
From the musical perspective, hearing it is all that matters.
From the ' oh well what can entertain me on a whimsical level'..understanding it could be important, and absolutely useless otherwise apart from the aforementioned use to MAKE AND PLAY MUSIC.
What I think is going on is that there is a lot of looking at guitars going on, and not much playing.
True.
The pursuit of the cause/effect has little to do with music, or playing it, and a lot to do with hobbies like cabinet making or hot-rodding cars which are technical and aesthetically based.
Building a guitar to certain sound is the goal, not perfecting YJM sweeps.
These are handiwork projects evaluated by the owner against criteria that the owner chooses. As such seeking sustain, or a special shade of chartreuse, or aluminum rims, all fall into the same category i.e. the hobbyist wants it.
At the pro level understanding the components from a physics POV allows design of an item to meet customer requirements than may or not be pertinent to musical applications.
Modifications and repair also require understanding of how things work to retain normal function when fixing things.
Very little has to do with making music.
Very much has to do with making guitars.

I'll add, Leo did not have a studio, he had a workshop.
 

korus

Member
Messages
1,179
Better sustain is malevolent oversimplification for those who DO NOT have sufficient hearing ability to evaluate if a tone of a particular guitar is good enough for the model it represents.

It 'helps' them 'evaluate' musical instrument using stopwatch instead of ears/brain being born able to hear and then cultivated into musical ability. Which is clearly as logical or as wise as using a bathroom scale to evaluate a painting or a meter to evaluate a book.

In real life the very moment buyer says 'better sustain' seller knows he can sell anything to that buyer simply by talking anything convincingly.

I am positive almost all can grasp the concept they've just learnt exists for decades. And this freshly acquired knowledge might reduce chances of them being exploited in the future.

Discussion on sustain is always fun, though. Cause it leads to mechanical resonance being mentioned at times. And these moments are the most fun.
 




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