Easy Playing Acoustic

Discussion in 'Acoustic Instruments' started by LocustXReign, Feb 14, 2009.

  1. LocustXReign

    LocustXReign Member

    Apr 24, 2007
    Brooklyn, NY
    I'm looking for some recommendations on an acoustic guitar that will sound pretty massive, but won't give me the hand fatigue most seem to. I don't like playing super heavy strings generally, I don't find the tonal difference a substantial enough trade off for my ability to be a bit more expressive on something 9.5's or .10's, and I'm secure enough to say that I think the heavy string schtick is really pointless on electrics,

    however I understand the need for them on an acoustic generally speaking.

    I don't play acoustic too often, but I'm starting to really want to get a bit more into it and Im considering a new one willing it plays really easily, but still sounds huge. No ovations, and nothing that looks like it came off a space ship please.

    Any ideas?

    I play an older Yamaha jumbo that's black and was considered a paul simon model at one point from what I've been told.

    It'd be a lot lamer looking guitar if I hadn't seen pictures of Paul Simon, John Lennon and Bob Dylan with the same guitar haha.
  2. Stubee

    Stubee Member

    Nov 17, 2007
    I play Gibson dreads mostly, but the easiest playing flattops I've owned (dreads) were probably '90s Taylor 510s and a 710. Very "fast" & slim necks, low action, with 13s.

    If you really don't want to play 13s, you can string some dreads w. 12s and get good tone, or buy a guitar that's designed for 12s (lights), like an 000-sized, Grand Auditorium or OM, etc. Many nice guitars out there like that and some are pretty darned loud.

    I do have an old Gibson LG-2 that wears 12s (00-size) that is very loud for it's size in the treble/mid-range vicinity with nice bass.

    You have a lot of choices. "Easy playing" is pretty personal because it, IMO, depends as much on neck contour, radius and--especially--a good set up as string gauge, guitar size or brand. Hopefully you can try out a bunch to see what grabs you?
  3. zombywoof

    zombywoof Member

    Jun 22, 2006
    As Stubee said - comfy is going to vary from person to person. To me, a deep contour neck is the most comfortable.

    The thing about acoustics is the heavier guage strings and a high action are what drives the top.

    I am a big old school Gibson tone fan but that ain't everyone's cup of tea.

    I would recommend ya try out a Guild Jumbo. They are just really fine, all round guitars. The older Westerly, RI-made Guilds can still be had at very reasonable prices.
  4. jcotten

    jcotten Member

    Oct 21, 2008
    The Taylor neck fits my hands best, and a grand auditorium or grand concert will be braced for light strings. That makes for some easy playing for me!

  5. GuitarsFromMars

    GuitarsFromMars Member

    Jun 7, 2004
    playing in traffic...
    Taylor guitars are easy to play.They lack robust tone,but they're easy to play.I like the tone of Gibsons and Martins.They take some playing,to get used to.
  6. bassethound

    bassethound Member

    Jan 31, 2009
    i'd say try out as many as you can. you'll know the right one when you play it. that said, i second the guild suggestion especially when factoring in price. my jf30 booms while not being too bottom heavy, and my d55 practically plays itself.
  7. northernlake

    northernlake Member

    Feb 27, 2007
    the thing to look for IMHO is the neck profile you want. Most necks are either 1 11/16" at the nut (too slim for some) or 1 3/4". Apart from the width there's the profile: from shallow/low profile to a big fat V or C shape. All of this is personal preference.

    I personally don't believe in acoustics that play badly; if it's a decent instrument (and all of the names mentioned above fit that qualification), a nice setup should make it play to your liking.

    Don't accept anything less!

    For instance, my Guild 12 string Jumbo plays/frets easily, but the neck is quite the hand full and perhaps not for everyone.

    Good luck!
  8. RustyAxe

    RustyAxe Member

    Feb 27, 2007
    The easiest playing will be any box with a 24.75" scale (Gibson J-45, Taylor GC, and others) with light strings. But there are other factors that come into play to a lesser degree ... nut slot height, saddle height, neck angle, fretboard radius ...
  9. Tidewater Custom Shop

    Tidewater Custom Shop Performance Enhancing Guitarworks Supporting Member

    Jul 22, 2008
    Under a stack of textbooks
    I just picked this up in a trade. I like larger necks, so I'll be putting it up for sale / trade soon.

    However, it does play nice and easy - ringing clarity and sustain. It has a slimmer neck than my Les Paul R7, but not as slim as my '70s SG... kinda like an ES-175. It has a very clean tone with good range all around and excellent volume. I believe it's considered a Grand Orchestra in size - all solid woods, and the string contact points are all bone.

    You should check these Guild's out... this one is the F47R.

  10. Alter

    Alter Member

    Dec 18, 2007
    maybe get a short scale taylor (in a smaller shape than the dread - auditorium or grand concert). if your touch is soft enough, or if you play fingerstyle you can set the action pretty low (so that the string gauge doesn't really matter). if you play a dread hard with a pick though, you can only have so much of easy action before the sound starts to suffer..

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