There’s a few reasons for their increasing popularity. If a song requires a longer than usual left-hand stretch, then I grab a shorter scale guitar (it always surprises me how much easier it can be on a 24-7/8" scale vs. a 25-1/2" scale). an acoustic guitar’s tone is influenced by the tonewoods of the guitar, the body shape, the bracing, even the tuners, along with the nut and saddle materials. Bottom Line: On a tight budget? The more tension, the more effort required to move the string and alter the pitch when bending. If your guitar strings are under higher tension as is the case for a standard scale compared to a short scale guitar, the strings will require more effort to press down. Do note that there is a tradeoff with having a slim neck acoustic guitar. In the context of the acoustic guitar, an abundance of overtones is often described as ‘rich’ sounding. Guitars such as the Gretsch Jim Dandy with 24″ scale length represent very good value. This increase in tension affects how easily the notes are fretted. Higher tension also occurs when changing to heavier gauge strings. Acoustic Guitar Nut Width + Comparison Chart, Acoustic Guitars that Play like Electrics, Why Good Acoustic Guitars Are So Expensive. This is much the same when comparing string gauges, all things being equal the lighter gauge string will be subject to less intonation problems. The FS Model was designed in response to the renaissance of alternate tunings for complex fingerstyle arrangements. Don’t expect to get the same depth that you would get out of a full-size acoustic. I was surprised that the guitar sounded very good as long as I kept it within a low to medium volume. The shorter the scale length, the closer the frets will be to one another. One unique thing about the Taylor Mini-e Koa is the built-in ES-B electronics that allow you to plug in and play wherever you are! This scale length is common on guitars specifically designed for children and for travel guitars. Now Peter makes all his axes with a short scale, and I've got a jumbo that is short scale, 17 frets, and that's fantastic. OM2H 'OM' stands for "Orchestra Model," but 80 years after this body shape was first designed it has become the most popular 14-fret model with fingerstyle guitar soloists who choose to play on steel strings. It can be difficult finding the best acoustic guitars for fingerstyle. Almost never use a capo (one uses a capo at 2nd just to have wider neck and shorter scale! These are my personal guitar covers with tab, sheet music my video tutorial and PDF. The small shape and short, comfy scale of a parlor guitar makes them perfect tools for writing songs or playing on the couch. Do short scale guitars cause issues in open tunings? With a 1-11/16” nato neck, the feel is very reminiscent of the above-mentioned Taylor and Martin miniatures. This is a forum where guitarists, from novice to experienced, can explore the world of guitar through a variety of media and discussion. A full-size guitar is 25.5 inches in scale length, meaning you’ll want to look for a guitar that is anywhere between 22-24.9”. There’s little doubt that regardless of the physical differences between short and standard scale acoustic guitars, any change to scale length from what you are usually accustomed to will have an impact on how you play the guitar, which will often indirectly affect the tone of the guitar, regardless of all other aspects. Guitar neck width is measured at the nut and the 12th fret. They are the smallest body size and are just a step above ½ size guitars and ukuleles. It’s one of the best on the market in terms of tone, build quality and durability. Sure, you can. However due to the decreased tension of the strings, short scale guitars are typically less responsive. The two pickups, arranged in a P/J configuration, are the main advantage of this bass. Start by learning the right-hand and left-hand position and focus on the scales played on the top three strings only. If you’re in the market for a small guitar, yet want one that can deliver the same impact as a full-size dreadnought, a grand concert is your best choice. A short scale guitar can be any guitar: bass guitars, acoustic guitars, scale electric guitar, acoustic-electric bass guitar - you name it, and there is probably a short scale version of the guitar on the market. Gibson has short scale models but I don't know any specific models. After all, when tuning to an open G for instance, we are loosening and therefore reducing the tension on the low E and A string, the two heaviest gauge strings on the guitar (the high E is also loosened). You can even pick from a variety of different colors to find one that best fits your style! Both the neck and the fretboard are a little over a half an inch smaller than your typical dreadnought guitar with the nut coming in at 1 13/16”. They are small, durable, well made guitars that sound great, play … Small Guitars With Big Sound. Martin has always been known for its quality craftsmanship when it comes to producing some of the world’s best acoustic guitars. Some guitarists, especially those with small hands may find this advantageous as it requires less hand span, or stretch between the fingers to play otherwise difficult chord voicings. Short scale guitars are also more comfortable to play for many guitarists, especially those with small hands. They are small, durable, well made guitars that sound great, play … Small Guitars With Big Sound. Don’t fret (horrible pun), as we’re here to help those little hands make a big sound! The mixture of Mahogany HPL and Spruce HPL are unique too, making it climate-friendly no matter where you end up! Luckily, you’re in the right place. The top-tier ebony fingerboard provides a smooth feel while reducing unwanted fret and string noise. Experts differ in their opinions about which fret is best to measure string height from, with most saying that measuring from between the 8th and the 12th fret, is the best. Consider this, almost the entire music system is built on the major scale. 24” (610mm) to 25.5” (648mm) Scale … For example when fretting a note the string is pushed against the fretboard. The body is crafted from a laminated spruce top with layered catalpa on the back and side. Through these tabs you'll improve your technique learning many beautiful songs. The beauty of the APXT2 is that it also comes with everything you need to get started, including a strap, strings, tuner, and soft gig-bag. Different woods vary greatly in sound and price, so choosing the right one for your preferences is important. After reading your article, I played several songs both on the standard and then on the short scale, but the difference was that I played softer on the short scale. There is not as much of a compromise as you might expect there to be, even with the scaled down body. If you’ve been playing guitar for years and you are looking for the most luxurious in tone and feel, we highly recommend getting your hands on the Eastman E10P. Thanks to the built-in ART Pickup System, you’ll always be ready for any surprise gig that comes your way. Clip 1: Fingerstyle - Tone at 80 percent. Yes, on your fretting hand. A lot of guitar players play scales to improve their speed and control, but in this lesson, we focused more on how to play scales smoothly with the fingerstyle technique. If you have small hands with fatter fingers, you might want to consider getting a wider neck too, as it will help to increase your dexterity. The Martin LXM Little Martin is made from a beautiful Sitka Spruce and comes complete with a Micarta fretboard and high-quality Gotoh tuners. It's just a dream to play. some overtones have greater sustain than others. the lowest frequency or resonance produced as a result of the string’s vibrations being transferred to the guitar’s soundboard. They’re shape and size gives you a nice, clear mid-range tone while still retaining versatility that is perfect for any style of playing. The FS Model was designed in response to the renaissance of alternate tunings for complex fingerstyle arrangements. As a result, using a short scale guitar with heavier gauge strings would cancel out the lower tension the shorter scale guitar would otherwise provide. Why not leave a comment below and join the conversation. The emphasis on the Martin LXM was for it to stand up against full-size guitars in terms of sound. The guitar had the widest neck (1.8 inches at the nut) of this group of instruments, which fingerstyle players and those with large hands will appreciate. It provides professional tone and playability and also comes with built-in electronics for playing live! The small-body Grand Concert debuted in 1984 to meet the needs of a new wave of adventurous acoustic fingerstyle players. The Stratabond modified low-oval neck adds to its playability as well. Many will tell you there’s only one correct way of doing something. The Seagull S6 Original has earned the top spot on the list because it has just about everything a good fingerstyle guitar should, including a decent price.. The fundamental is the sound produced from the primary vibration e.g. They feel a load of discomfort when they try and fret the strings or play chords. Because of the scaled-down size, the Taylor GS Mini-e also makes for the perfect travel guitar. As a result when a guitar string is plucked the main sound we hear is the fundamental. In any case, extra relief is not the answer. The acoustic guitars on this list are the best parlor guitars. Dreadnought guitars have been around since the early 1930s and are easily the most popular type of acoustic guitars around. These types of woods aren’t nearly as common, though produce a gorgeous mid-range tone that projects nicely, yet maintains serious warmth. A shorter scale length means that the strings … Guitarists are an opinionated bunch. If you have guitar related questions, use the "Search" field or ask the community. I don't know what the string height is in relationship to each fret, etc. If you took a guitar string and suspended it between two objects (such as the nut of the guitar and the saddle) and then plucked the string, it would vibrate a specific number of times per second. To put this in simple terms, if we did not increase the tension when increasing the scale length, the 5th fret of the G string would not have a frequency of 261.6hz, and would no longer be a middle C. In simple terms the longer the scale length the more tension required to tune a guitar string to pitch. They are higher frequency integers of the fundamental tone, yet because they produce sound at the same time we hear them as one, although they are heard at different rates of decay e.g. The Eastman 10P is the embodiment of luxury guitars for advanced players with smaller hands. OM2H 'OM' stands for "Orchestra Model," but 80 years after this body shape was first designed it has become the most popular 14-fret model with fingerstyle guitar soloists who choose to play on steel strings. The acoustic guitars on this list are the best parlor guitars. After all, there are thousands of different options out there. This is why it’s essential to look for a thin neck guitar so that you don’t have to exert as much effort or feel pain when you play. In terms of size, they are just above parlor guitars and just under your traditional dreadnought guitars. In music, the number of vibrations per second is measured in Hertz (Hz). It can be difficult finding the best acoustic guitars for fingerstyle. The mixture of Mahogany and Rosewood on the 20-fret fretboard give it a smooth quality, which pairs great with the thin build for easy-to-play chords. Alternatively, a short scale guitar may be more affected by string buzz, particularly with regard to the strings buzzing the fret wires. If you have a larger budget, you may even want to look into some woods that are a bit rarer such as Indian Rosewood or Koa. But aside from having two identical guitars, with the only difference being scale length it can give a rough indication of both playability and tone. Maybe you’re in the great acoustic debate as to which company is better: Martin or Taylor. The Eastman E10P is one of the most high-quality, parlor-style acoustic guitars on the market. ¾ size guitars are guitars that are mostly recommended to children under 13. My main guitar is a Gibson Songwriter Deluxe EC. Due to the lower action, the strings are closer to the frets, and additional to this the strings are slacker on the neck. Overtones make up the harmonic series. A lack of overtones is often described as plain sounding. Required fields are marked *. This guitar's shorter scale and a super setup with phosphor bronze light gauge strings and 12th fret string heights of 6/64" and 4/64" make it a joy to play. Many will tell you there’s only one correct way of doing something. With that said, the smaller the acoustic guitar, the smaller the sound (generally). eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'theacousticguitarist_com-box-3','ezslot_0',124,'0','0']));Today we are going to be taking a closer look at short scale acoustic guitars. So if you find yourself playing a short scale guitar be sure to give the guitar some time. How have you found the transition from standard to short scale? Thanks for an interesting article. At 23” in scale length, it’s the perfect size for students and adults with smaller hands! Your short fingers won’t struggle to wrap around it and play dense chords. It can do both fingerstyle and flat pick work quite nicely. A short scale guitar can be any guitar: bass guitars, acoustic guitars, scale electric guitar, acoustic-electric bass guitar - you name it, and there is probably a short scale version of the guitar on the market. Are Acoustic Guitars Really Harder to Play Than Electric? They are also well suited to fingerstyle guitar which is also enjoying a resurgence. That brings us to our next part…. All things being equal, short scale guitars sacrifice some brightness and bass response compared to a standard scale guitar, also due to the lower tension of the strings. Enter your email address below and we’ll notify you when we publish something new. Oscar Schmidt has your back. Long scale is widely thought of as the scale of choice for both flatpickers and modern fingerstyle players. Depending on the guitarist and their individual preferences, short scale and small body acoustic guitars can be an appealing option as they are more portable, and in some cases more affordable, particularly in the low to mid-price ranges. In the following section we’ll discuss why and how short scale lengths affect playability and why they are preferred by some along with the impact a shorter scale may have on tone. Welcome to r/guitar, a community devoted to the exchange of guitar related information and entertainment. If you ever have the chance, visit the Taylor factory. Its lightweight design allows you to pack it away and take with you on the road with ease. This baby sounds amazing! For acoustic fingerstyle guitars, a scale length of 25.4” and above is considered long . Luckily, you’re in the right place. Theoretically, shorter scale guitars (all things being equal) should have slightly less issues with intonation. It’s a great guitar for fingerstyle, but the Adirondack Red Spruce top gives it some attack if you like to strum or flat-pick. Less tension, equals less volume, but it is going to be Amplified on stage, anyway. We find that using a short scale will most often make a guitar’s tone softer and warmer. The S6 Original features a dreadnought style body with a solid cedar top and laminated wild cherry for the back and sides. While not incredibly important, as you can always change string gauge, you might want to consider getting a guitar with smaller gauge strings or lighter strings in general. Key Points Scale length: to go short or long? Note: Dreadnought guitars are not necessarily great for those with small hands. If a song requires a longer than usual left-hand stretch, then I grab a shorter scale guitar (it always surprises me how much easier it can be on a 24-7/8" scale vs. a 25-1/2" scale). _____ Even at a lower price, the tone still rings like many high-end Martins. People often describe this sound as “woody.”. This page contains a collection of the finest acoustic fingerstyle blues guitar songs I have selected and played. Experts differ in their opinions about which fret is best to measure string height from, with most saying that measuring from between the 8th and the 12th fret, is the best. Long scale is widely thought of as the scale of choice for both flatpickers and modern fingerstyle players. The most common scale lengths on acoustic guitar are as follows: 23” (580mm) Scale Lengths. You may be … No spam, nothing to sell,just sharing good info. As I’ve grown older my hands have a tendency to cramp about three-quarters of the way through a performance and I thought the lighter tension would be a great way to extend my playing years. And OM is, IMO, the way to go for fingerstyle. This makes fretting individual notes or bending the strings easier. http://acousticletter.com/join -- For weekly guitar comparisons, demo videos and acoustic guitar knowledge delivered to your inbox! You can check the full article on how to measure scale length here.eval(ez_write_tag([[250,250],'theacousticguitarist_com-medrectangle-4','ezslot_7',130,'0','0']));eval(ez_write_tag([[250,250],'theacousticguitarist_com-medrectangle-4','ezslot_8',130,'0','1'])); Small body acoustic and travel guitars are becoming increasingly popular and many of these utilize a shorter scale length than the standard 25.5 inches. It’s incredibly lightweight and is built with reduced specs, making it perfect for those players with smaller hands. We hope that our article has helped you in your search for a small-scale acoustic guitar. If you really must get a dreadnought guitar, you’ll need to consider other factors to make sure that it’s a good fit for your hands. This may be more of an issue if using particularly light strings but otherwise I wouldn’t be overly concerned about playing in open tunings on a short scale guitar. It helped a lot. Short scale guitars are considered more comfortable to play in some instances, due to the lower string tension involved. Parlor guitars are just a small size down from the ¾ size. Before 2019, Santa Cruz’s refined take on a parlor guitar cam standard with a Sitka spruce top, but the instrument is now available in a wide range of tonewoods and custom appointments. While there’s not as much depth in tone as higher end Taylors, Martin, or Eastman guitars, the overall sound is quite clear with a decent bass response for the size. I had an Epi Texan that I'm told was long scale, and I didn't like it. when playing fingerstyle, but lacks the bass response of my Dreadnought for example for strumming. The scale length represents the length of the guitar string that is able to vibrate between the nut and the saddle. Almost never use a capo (one uses a capo at 2nd just to have wider neck and shorter scale! The most common scale lengths on acoustic guitar are as follows: 23” (580mm) Scale Lengths. The scale length is the distance between the nut and the saddle, and like the action, it affects both the tone and playability of your guitar. Now Peter makes all his axes with a short scale, and I've got a jumbo that is short scale, 17 frets, and that's fantastic. Scale length: to go short or long? Open tunings are another aspect to consider when it comes to short scale acoustic guitars. 11 – 52’s and wanted to switch to heavier gauge strings (as they can result in a fuller sound) e.g. check the full article on how to measure scale length here, How to Choose the Best Microphone for Acoustic Guitar Recording. It is likely to grow on you, especially if you have smaller than average hands. One of the biggest issues that people with small hands have with traditional guitars is that the necks are too wide. This page contains a collection of the finest acoustic fingerstyle guitar songs selected for their beauty and musicality. Anything with the same size body and a short scale will actually be a 14-fret 000. I’ve put here a list of 100+ tabs. The difficulty of the songs increase from top to bottom. I lost nothing is long as I played it softer then the full scale guitar. I did, however, have the action set a little bit lower - just my personal preference. With that in mind, when comparing tone in most cases a standard scale guitar will be more responsive and have more brightness and bass response, thanks mostly to the additional tension of the strings. This means that the length from the nut to the bridge saddle is 25.5 inches. And OM is, IMO, the way to go for fingerstyle. At 24.9”, you get 19 frets to play with as it sits comfortably low on your knee thanks to the Parlor shape. Gibson ES 339 Review: Is It the Right One For Your Style? Available as both the long scale OM or short scale 000 and built as all Thompson Guitars are, to be responsive, articulate and clear. If you're talking about Martin long and short scale guitars, I don't set them up or play them differently. Taylor GC's, which are short scale, are essentially 000 sized. The tone is warm, clear and balanced, as you would expect from a … Didn't sound small at all. Hey guys, today I want to show you how you can make scales on guitar sound like beautiful melodies. Features a short scale and lighter string tension making it easier to play. Spruce is easily one of the most popular wood types when it comes to acoustic guitars. Why am I hearing a lot about short scale guitars lately? This is because acoustic guitars are more holistic with regard to tone e.g. Enter your email address below and we’ll notify you now and then when we publish something new. A ‘short’ scale length guitar has somewhat less tension on the strings compared to a normal scale length (25.4″), so that might help your fretting hand. The long-scale OM is rich and powerful, the short-scale sweet and full. Features a short scale and lighter string tension making it easier to play. Check out the picture below for a better visual representation of nut measurement. ), and the sound can be the natural crystal clear. This is a forum where guitarists, from novice to experienced, can explore the world of guitar through a variety of media and discussion. A classic for fingerstyle and flat-picking alike. With its flat oval shape and short scale, the neck also made it easy to play tricky chords and fingerings. But, as explained in a recent article, this isn’t exactly the case, as this methodology doesn’t allow for the different properties (the strings’ ability to stretch, along with density and mass) of each individual guitar string on your guitar. Chords, intervals, cadences, keys just to mention few. 24” (610mm) to 25.5” (648mm) Scale … Through these tabs you'll improve your technique learning many beautiful songs. Anything with the same size body and a short scale will actually be a 14-fret 000. Keep in mind this isn’t going to provide the same results as comparing two identical guitars as per the video below, as for one, the nut material is no longer contributing to the tone of the guitar. It has a paler color when compared to dark woods and has a nice, clear tone without sounding too thin. This type of wood is a bit denser and outputs a punchier sound with lower overtones. The patented Taylor Neck at 1-11/16” makes this bad boy incredibly easy to play. Maybe a perfect compromise for you. Guitars that have smaller scale lengths will be much easier for people with small hands to play, as they won’t have to stretch beyond comfort to play specific notes and chords, thus making playing more enjoyable. Ps my Froggy Bottom "C", a 00-sized guitar, IS the perfect fingerstyle guitar. Here you find tab, sheet music and my video tutorial.. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. The tone is very reminiscent of traditional dreadnought guitars, though obviously a bit quieter. Guitar Action at the 12th fret of a Fender Stratocaster A guitar’s action is defined principally in terms of the height at which the strings sit above a given fret. Another aspect that can be affected by scale length are the overtones produced. ), and the sound can be the natural crystal clear. Bottom Line: The Martin LXM is a wonderful small acoustic guitar for pros and amateurs alike who want great sound at a smaller price! Over the years it has been played by the likes of BB King, Noel Gallagher and Eric Clapton to name just a few. I've played one in cedar and mahogany, superb tone. The number of vibrations per second defines the pitch of the note played. The lighter the strings, the easier they will be to press down on the fretboard and play. There was no thundering bass, there was no powerful midrange, the highs seemed fine but whenever I began to strum a bit harder, usually a chorus, the guitar simply sounded dead. If you’re shopping for a short-scale bass—or any bass for that matter—the JMJ is worth putting on your must-try list. Keep in mind, tone is almost always affected by playability. If you then extended the length of the section of the string that could vibrate (the scale length) by 1 – 2 inches, the string would need to be tightened (tension increased) to match the number of vibrations measured per second (Hz) of the first position when played. Based on this, a scale length below 25.5” would be considered a short scale guitar in most cases. All I know is that it is extrememly easy-on-the-fingers. Enjoy the songs! With the added functionality of the onboard electronics system, we’re surprised it’s this inexpensive in the first place! Clip 2: Pickstyle - Tone at 50 percent. A ‘short’ scale length guitar has somewhat less tension on the strings compared to a normal scale length (25.4″), so that might help your fretting hand. Nothing matches the beauty of an acoustic masterfully plucked over a pleasant chord progression, and there’s no better way to quickly add your personal spin to a popular cover song. Ps my Froggy Bottom "C", a 00-sized guitar, IS the perfect fingerstyle guitar. Just look at Ed Sheeran who uses ¾ guitars almost exclusively.