A guitar’s scale length is length of string between the nut and the bridge. Do you want to have a big guitar or a small one? The shorter scale length has lower tension for warm, thick tones, as well as excellent feel and playability to more easily move between chords and notes. Well, guitars with greater tension benefit from a “tighter” sound due to better clarity in their higher overtones. Your email address will not be published. Where things get more interesting is when we’re making more incremental changes to scale length, because every string on your guitar isn’t going to react exactly the same to a given change in scale length. A big guitar gives you possibilities to end up with a guitar with a large sound volume and strong, durable, sustaining basses. How does your guitar’s scale length affect guitar string tension & playability? If you have a guitar, and aren't sure of the scale length you can search for the scale length of your model online, or measure it yourself. The new GT, which is short for “Grand Theater,” features a non-cutaway body that borrows the basic curves of Taylor’s Grand Orchestra model. Now, the good news is you don’t really have to worry about becoming a math expert or really trying to dial everything in perfectly, because most guitar string sets are already constructed in a way that’s going to echo this basic mathematical principle when you just go down a gauge. Also, it is advantageous for people with small hands because it makes fretting easier for them. Close your eyes – go! It’s commonly known that some guitars have shorter scales while others have longer scales, or, in other words, frets are closer together on some guitars and further apart on others. Scale Length Affects Feel, Playability AND Tone — Haze Guitars In this article, we are going to look at all the reasons why you might want to get a short neck guitar. Scale length affects the playability, feel and toneof the instrument. Harley Benton’s ST-Travel guitar offers full scale-length playability at an insanely low $74 price tag By Richard Bienstock July 06, 2020 Basswood body, maple neck and fretboard and a trio of single coils round out the impressive package (Image credit: Harley Benton) Basic physic principles of wavelength and frequency dictate that the 12th fret of a guitar, which marks a pitch one octave above the open-string note, falls at the halfway point of the free-vibrating section of the spring. Learn how your comment data is processed. Scale length can be a confusing topic. That’s why guitars, which play higher pitches, are shorter than basses. [QUESTION] Is “scale length affects playability” placebo? Classical Options – Córdoba C5 and Córdoba Protégé C1 Your email address will not be published. Just curious. The Clint Lowery SE model has 25.5" scale length… Measuring Scale Length. Let us know down in the comments. Keep in mind that guitar scale lengths are typically measured in inches. In a nutshell, the shorter the scale length, the closer the frets are together. However, you rarely hear a guitar player mention scale length, and scale length has a significant impact on both playability and tone. Why does the length of the strings matter? The guitar’s scale length is 24 1/8 inches, while the nut width is 1 23/32 inches. Whereas, if you have a 27-inch scale guitar, you might be able to get away with something like 12s. By Richard Bienstock 06 July 2020. This is a good question and there are many levels of complexity to answering it. I bought a new Strat-type body for my guitar, to replace the old one. Its mahogany neck features a comfortable V profile and its rosewood fretboard has a 24.75-inch scale length and 12-inch radius. Honestly, I don't notice the fret spacing at all in the upper frets, but rather in the first 5 where I sometimes can feel myself stretching harder on my 25.5" guitars. If you prefer to do everything yourself, there’s a couple different string tension calculators on the internet that can be useful, but again, I really recommend reaching out to us because we’re more than happy to help you dial it in just right. Longer scale length sound and playability characteristics: quick response, crisp … Don’t confuse scale length with a smaller bodied guitar necessarily. It’s commonly known that some guitars have shorter scales while others have longer scales, or, in other words, frets are closer together on some guitars and further apart on others. What the debate seems to be is how this impacts a guitar’s tone, response, and playability. 2) Regarding playability: with the 24"75 length, when I reach the upper frets, say fret 18, 19 etc, I feel somewhat uncomfy for my fingers almost don't fit. The capo acts more-or-less like a new nut, shortening the effective scale length of the strings to roughly that of a Les Paul. That’s where things can get a little bit more complicated. The tension on any given string on your guitar is a product of the scale length, the tuning, and the mass of that individual gauged string. The tension of the strings plays a big part in playability. A small one may lose power, compared to the big one, but still have sparkling trebles and be handy to transport. While the tone is excellent, perhaps the biggest appeal of the LG-2 is its playability. I … The scale length used by Gibson has caused some confusion. We recommend looking for scale lengths anywhere between 22-24.6”. A matter of taste, but even more than that, it is a matter of what you’re used to playing, over a long period of time. Compared with a 25.5” scale length, switching to a 24” scale will make a very significant difference in the tension on your strings. Absolutely not. Longer scale lengths (greater than 25" in guitars and 34" basses) usually give more note definition and increased sustain. You may or may not remember that PRS some years ago was tagged as a nu-metal brand. It’s going to have not nearly as much tension as it would on a standard scale guitar. That’s totally fine. Grand Concert/0/00 shaped guitar, Grand Auditorium/Grand Performance/000/0000 shaped, Dreadnought shaped, Jumbo shaped guitars (and any other guitars that with medium to large sized bodies) will have a scale length anywhere from 24” to 25.5”. I have mostly 24.75 scale guitars and a Strat with 25.5. So, there is a balance of scale length and playability. Bradford’s small scale guitar from the video: check out my article and video on my new small scale guitar: My new 2018 Small Scale Douglass Scott Guitar. We talk about the effect of different scale lengths as well as how to adjust your strings to balance it out. Commonly used short scales are 25, 24.9, 24.75, and 24.625 inches. Basswood body, maple neck and fretboard and a trio of single coils round out the impressive package. This measurement represents the distance between ... Playability Different scale lengths are characterized by different string tension at a given pitch. The width at the lower bout (15 inches) is nearly the same as the Taylor Grand Concert, but with a shorter length. They both incorporate dual humbuckers and a solid body, so they should sound the same, right? Fender does have short-scale models – namely the Jaguar, Mustang, and Duo-Sonic (which we review below) – which are all 24 inches. A good rule of thumb to keep in mind is that a 1/2 gauge difference in the overall gauge of a set, so here I’m talking about the difference between a general set of 10s and a general set of 9-1/2s or 10-1/2s, that 1/2 gauge difference, which of course would be balanced out over the entire set by the manufacturer, is going to be good enough to account for about a 1 to a 1-1/2 inch difference in scale length.
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