Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by herbie, Jun 10, 2006.
Acoustic/electric? It looks pretty versatile but I'm always weary of do everything hybrids.
Taylor quality for sure!!!.....but a lil lacking tone wise IMO. They feel good and are well balanced.....but just a lil stale for me.
A good idea and I really wanted to like them but....
IMO, the T5 is a guitar that is just lost. Not really good at either acoustic or electric tones. Especially if you already own a great acoustic and/or electric guitar. I tried it many times and not once could I get an acceptable tone out of it for me.
Now on the plus side, I think the T5s feel great! Very comfortable and just butter to play!
Again, just MO...
I played two of them. The first was set up poorly (well it was in Gui-target) The second played beautifully.
I think the problem with these do it all types is that we are used to a certain feel. I use flatwound 12s on my Sweet 16, 11s on my H-137 and 10s on my Strat. The result is that the different feel leads me to play the specific things I bought those different guitars for.
Switching the T-5 from the acoustic to arch top to Tele type sound doesn't work for me because it all feels the same.
Certainly not scientific and only my own opinion.
The guitar is made with typical Taylor quality and attention to detail, so maybe I'm just too anal about details.
My .02...change available.
At first I felt like the others in there assesment of the T5, then I attended a performance by Doyle Dykes where he demonstrated exactly how to use the T5 and the amps you would be playing through. Like a lot of other new gear, you have to thoughroughly understand the instrument. I have a whole new appriciation for the T5 so much so that I own a T5 Custom. The more I play and experiment with it, the more I am enjoying it.
I will also add that you have to have good quality amps (I believe this is true for any guitar) as well as the cables you use. I use an A/B box with the T5 going to a Sedona Lite and a Quiana and I always get great tone with everything connected with George L's.
I wanted to like it -but- it isn't a very good acoustic and is even a worse electric.
From my understanding, the T5 was never intended to be an acoustic. I thought the intention was to be an amplified guitar that sounded liked amp'ed acouistics or electrics. I have played a few and think that when hooked up to the right amps they do both very well. It would probably be best hooked up with an amp switcher (A/B box) so that you can get the acoustic tones through and acoustic amp and the electric tones through an electric amp. I do have to say, if it sounds good through one pickup in one amp, the other pickup sucks. Then you change amps and the reverse is true for the pickups. If you hook it up to a PA and a decent tube amp with an A/B box, it sounds great.
To me, it's kinda like playing a piezo equipped guitar through one amp set up for non-piezo pups. The piezo pups sound at best ok. If you play piezo pups through a good acoustic amp or PA, especially with a good acoustic preamp, they can sound killer.
I will eventually own a T5. I already have an 810E by Taylor. It sounds killer through a PA or acoustic amp, sounds ok at best, usually like caca through a Twin or any other amp designed for electric guitars.
tried the T5 through one of those Bose PA's. awesome sounding rig!
So to sum up:
The T-5 sounds like crap acoustically w/o amplification
via a dedicated acoustic amp or PA, and sounds ok electric through a proper electric tube amp. The use of an A/B box with the proper setup and pickup choice for each seems to be the practical application
Everyone seems to be in consensus that the Fit/finish seems to be excellent although it "feels" like an electric which may cause your playing style and/or music choice to be slanted toward electric.
So, is it worth $2k compared to other options available?
Thanks for all the replies
Taylor should have had a dedicated output for the acoustic pickup and another for the electric pup. Then have pots for each. That way you can run the acoustic pup to the PA or an acoustic amp and the electric pup to an electric guitar amp or modeller. Godin's Multiac does this but I like the build quality of the Taylor more. Maybe there will be an aftermarket wiring harness.
I've played a couple T5s, and I was really impressed at how fast and fluid it felt, and I think they look great. It was a lot of fun to play because it felt great. That's about it for the positives. I also felt that it really didn't sound very good unplugged and only sounded okay through an old Fender Super Reverb. I didn't bother to play it through an acoustic amp or a PA as I was fairly uninterested at that point. Also, a buddy of mine bought one right when they came out, and about six months ago, the top on his T5 cracked for no apparent reason. They seem pretty fragile to me.
As far as other options go, I think the Crowdster Plus blows it away in both acoustic and electric tones. Check this one out on IndoorStorm. I played one at Tom's shop the last time I was in LA, and these clips don't do the acoustic functions much justice. Delicate fingerpicking on this guitar sounds just awesome through a good acoustic amp or PA.
I generally feel that hybrids of any kind (el Caminos, sporks, calculator watches, ect.) are pretty worthless as they usually leave a lot to be desired with one or both of their functions, but this is one that left me very impressed. If I had a fly date that needed both electric and acoustic tones, I would take only this guitar. Sorry to derail the thread, but someone asked about other options.
To me they're neither fish nor fowl.
Well-made....they play nice...but not one for me.
I'd agree that the T5 is a guitar looking for an identity. If you want something that's neither acoustic- or electric-sounding in the traditional sense, it's fine. It's built well and plays fine. But don't get one expecting it to be a 2-in-1 axe. I'm not sure what Taylor's intentions were, but it is not the equivalent of buying a good acoustic with a Tele (or any electric) hidden inside. If you're looking for something that does NOT sound like a take-off on the usual LP-Strat-Tele themes, though, you might like it. I don't need one in my arsenal.
a friend of mine has one. it sounds pretty good for acoustic and electric, imho. he is a really good player and gives it a work-out. lately, it has developed a very loud ground related hum. he hasn't sent it back for repair yet but he will have to before he can play it out.
I actually own one and it gives me great flexibility in switching between acoustic and electric without switching guitars - great when you need to flow between songs, or even switch in the middle of a song (that actually happens alot). Mine is not stock, however. I modified it by adding an L.R. Baggs element undersaddle pickup (same as in the Crowdster). Before the upgrade, I never was that happy with the acoustic sound, but the Element is a significant improvement over stock and sounds great. The electric side is very servicable for live use ( I've had mine for about a year and have figured out how to get nice tone out of it) and the guitar itself is wonderful to play (as everyone else has stated). With the Element upgrade, I've got a guitar that may not be the very best of both worlds, but certainly excellent in each. It doesn't completely replace my acoustic or my tele, but it's perfect for what I use it for.
I've played several (with electric/'jazz' string sets) - they all feel like the best 335 ever, but I don't dig the tone at all plugged in - "I'd like one with a couple of PAFs, please".
I was able to get some really "interesting" tones out of a T5, especially when I stopped trying to make it sound like a LP or a strat. If you just let it be its own thing it is fun. I liked the feedback threshold which was quite low which allowed some crazy Hendrix/Cobain stuff at lower volumes. I agree these piezo hybrid guitars are in a no man's land unless you are in a wedding band.
Would I buy one? Probably not.
On a positive note, you can bet that every other guitar company (US and imported) will be blindly copying this soon, so the prices will be in free-fall when nobody rushes out to buy them. I say wait a few years then pick one up for $500.
Taylor should be at least a little embarrassed that it's pushing a product that people, upon purchase, immediately want to upgrade. Granted, it's priced below the 'expensive' Taylors. Still, at a $2K price point, finding a better-sounding acoustic pickup should be a harder task since they are, after all, an acoustic guitar builder. Supposedly a good one.
Rather than going with a hybrid from an acoustic maker, I opted for a hybrid from an electric maker. To me, a PRS Hollowbody with a piezo does a lot of the same things the T5 is intended to do, and I like the PRS better. (Granted, the PRS also costs more)
The PRS has far more versatile electric tone, at least for the stuff I play, and the proprietary Baggs piezo in the PRS sounds very good through an acoustic amp or through a PA. The PRS also has dual outputs and controls to manage both volumes, enabling you to use both amps simultaneously without needing an outboard A/B.
I have a Taylor acoustic that I love, but the T5 is not for me.
A few months ago a friend traded me his T-5 Custom maple for a McCarty I had. It took me one day to realize it wasn't a keep. It's not a strong acoustic nor a toneful electric. Gorgeous to behold and comfortable to play - but it was a disappointment. I sold it and bought a McCarty 10 top and continue to use my Larrivee for acoustic work. I'd like to try Carvin's electric/acoustic hybrid or a good electric equipped with an L.R. Baggs bridge.