Is the Taylor T5z a good live acoustic guitar?

Discussion in 'Acoustic Instruments' started by Billy Moss, Dec 3, 2017.


  1. Billy Moss

    Billy Moss Member

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    How is the acoustic setting for the T5z? What do they compare to for a real acoustic?

    - Back/Side Wood: Sapele
    - Top Wood: Sitka Spruce
    - Neck/Heel: Sapele
    - Electronics: T5 with Five-Way Switch
    - Bracing: Standard T5z
    - Binding: White
    - Fretboard Wood: Ebony
    - Fretboard Inlay: Small Diamonds
    - Headstock Overlay: Ebony
    - Bridge Pins: Ebony
    - Nut & Saddle: Bone
    - Tuners: Taylor Nickel
    - Truss Rod Cover: Black Plastic
    - Back/Side Finish: Gloss
    - Top Finish: Gloss
    - Neck Finish: Gloss
    - Cutaway: Venetian
    - Pickguard: None

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  2. knotts

    knotts Member

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    I have a maple T5 and through my experience, I was more impressed with how it was a convincing electric guitar vs and amazing acoustic guitar. It's not the T5z model, but I think electronically they would be similar. I do love the fit and finish as well as how effortless it is to play as an acoustic. I feel like while it does both well, it won't sound better than a great acoustic or a great electric. I'm lefty so I have yet to come across a T5z that was left handed.
     
  3. Totally Bored

    Totally Bored Member

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    I gig as a Solo/Duo/Trio doing lots of acoustic and electric guitar stuff and i've been on the search for a do all guitar.

    The Taylor T5z is kinda meh for Acoustic Guitar sounds IMO.. It's okay. My buddy has one and brought it to one of my gigs. Very cool guitar tho and I want one. It does have some cool electric guitar sounds to it. if your looking for awesome Acoustic guitar sounds I'd say keep looking IMO. YMMV.

    Also look at a Godin A6 Ultra for $800ish. I gig one of those and it has a better acoustic sound plus you can blend in the humbucker that gives it a great sound. It does a good Jazz guitar sound but it don't do a good Rock & Roll Bluesy Guitar sound IMO.
    Many here love the Crowdster. Seems to give a more authentic Acoustic sound and great Electric guitar sound. The only thing is theyre really expensive IMO. If I didn't have a kid in college I'd have one :)
    Lately I've been experimenting with the Fishman Bridge for a Strat. I have one installed and it's okay. I'm gonna install the Pre-amp soon so I'll know more then.

    Hope that helps and good luck :dude
     
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  4. Pietro

    Pietro 2-Voice Guitar Junkie and All-Around Awesome Guy

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    I tried one when they first came out. Desperately wanted to like it. It’s not quite an acoustic guitar. And it’s not quite an electric. It’s in between, and you can’t split the acoustic and electric sounds.

    So... nope. Big fat awesome playing great looking heap of nope.

    you want an amazing thin line guitar that sounds amazing acoustically live? Go with what I eventually ended up with. Anderson Crowdster. Want some electric to go with that on occasion? Get the Plus or Plus 2.
     
  5. Tony Done

    Tony Done Member

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    I'm not sure if it was a T5, but I tried something similar a while back. It sounded so bad acoustically that I didn't bother plugging it in.
     
  6. Pietro

    Pietro 2-Voice Guitar Junkie and All-Around Awesome Guy

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    Too bad. A lot of things that sound bad acoustically sound great plugged in.
     
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  7. itstooloudMike

    itstooloudMike Member

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    I have a T5z and absolutely love it. But I never intended for it to replace my Taylor 414kce for purely acoustic sounds. I am primarily an electric guitar player that wanted a versatile, comfortable, great playing guitar that could cover both electric and acoustic sounds in a live setting. I use a TC Body-Rez pedal with my T5z when I want acoustic sounds, and play it through an acoustic amp. Does it sound like a vintage D-18 Martin through a high-end studio mic? Of course not! But that was never the expectation. It does sound better that even the best Ovation I ever played live, and some of those aren't exactly horrible sounding. It's just a different kind of acoustic sound. Any time you play acoustic guitar through a loud amplification or sound reinforcement system, it loses some of the intimacy that you get in a quiet room with a high quality pure acoustic instrument.

    But the T5z does provide a good acoustic-electric type sound, along with lots of great electric guitar sounds. You have to work with the T5z and get to know it. It will surprise you if you are willing to take the time. I can easily get good Telecaster sounds with the T5z. And with an EQ pedal and some OD, you can get close to Les Paul sounds. If you like ES-335 sounds for blues or jazz, those are in there as well. When I'm showing someone my T5z setup, I like to play Bon Jovi's "Wanted Dead or Alive". I can do the acoustic intro, and then hit a couple of pedals and be playing the electric solo. Even Ritchie needed two guitars for that, but he wasn't lucky enough to have a T5z. To be honest, if you are primarily an acoustic player, the T5z might not be your thing. But if you are an electric player who is open minded and wants to add versatility and electric-acoustic sounds, the T5z is a fantastic instrument. I play lots of worship music, and it's perfect for that. I also play blues, southern-rock, classic-rock, country, and bluegrass. Did I mention the T5z is versatile?
     
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  8. s2y

    s2y Member

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    I had one and liked it. I ended up using mine mostly for the electric sounds. I also used it as a quiet acoustic for when the kids were sleeping. Ended up selling it because it does a lot of things my other guitars can do. Not much need for that unless I ever start gigging again. I could see myself getting a T5 12 string since it covers a lot of ground.

    One trick is to make sure to use the active 2 band.
     
  9. lp_bruce

    lp_bruce Member

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    I tried a T5 and was disappointed with the acoustic tones. It felt great in my hands and it's definitely a well made instrument, but less versatile than I expected. I play a Michael Kelly Hybrid Special.
     
  10. Tony Done

    Tony Done Member

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    Very true, but in that style of guitar I would be looking for acoustic sound first. I wouldn't expect loud, but I would want a nice tone.
     
  11. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    a thin-body instrument meant entirely for plugging in?

    that makes no sense.

    that said, +1 to the (plugged in) T-5 not really sounding like an "acoustic" guitar, it's its own thing, sort of in between electric and acoustic. i could see it serving as the "strummed rhythm acoustic" in a band context i suppose.

    taylor really needs to make one of these with the new ES2 system in it, that could be a real breakthrough in plugged-in "acoustic" sound.
     
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  12. lp_bruce

    lp_bruce Member

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    I seem to remember reading that the ES2 won't work with the T5, though I don't remember the specifics and of course I can't find where I read it.

    I think you're right that the T5 and similar instruments sound better in a band mix than on their own (if you're going for a truly acoustic sound) and I think they all benefit from some processing. When I'm doing solo acoustic shows, I never use my MK Hybrid. I do use them in my acoustic trio because it's nicely differentiated from the other acoustics and I can easily play electric parts. And in a full band it's pretty great (I think).
     
  13. edward

    edward Supporting Member

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    I, too, desperately wanted to like the T5 when they first came out. I ended up passing on it. That said, it depends on your goal:

    1. For solo to trios, playing "light" music with lots of air and spaces, I'd stick with an acoustic.
    2. For a bigger band, or crankin our rock covers, sure, a T5 can be made to "pass" sonically for an acoustic, but only because there's so much else going on that it's not the focus anywhoo.

    BTW, Wayne Johnson is a monster player! Got to see him live at a Taylor event, and what a sound he pumps out!! (not to mention loves to talk chops ...really nice guy!!). So when EQ is properly mixed through a decent PA, yeah, it's do-able. But then again, Grammy-winning players tend to make all kinds of nice sounds ;)

    Edward
     
  14. Wolfboy1

    Wolfboy1 Grandpa but...Not Yet Old! Silver Supporting Member

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    I found that dialing in a lowly Boss AC-2 with my strat sounds about as good as the Taylor T5 I tried. I was not hugely impressed by the construction either. It was on consignment at a local store and was a nice looking guitar but not especially good at one thing or the other. On another note my Taylor 12 string electro-acoustic sounds awesome!!!
     
  15. lp_bruce

    lp_bruce Member

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    We talk about hybrids sitting in the mix a lot. Here is (to me) how a hybrid can sit in the mix. This was at our CD release last year. I'm on the right and I think the acoustic from my MK Hybrid is about right. As an aside, one of my favorite onstage moment occurs at about 2:20. The guy playing lead is the guy I replaced in the band and he's a monster player. The plan was to move to a shared lead at some point, but he was just completely in the zone and we all looked at each other and said... we can't add anything to this and let it roll.

     

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