Good reads about flat top guitar voicing

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jorge rodriguez
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Joined: Tue Jun 12, 2012 7:38 pm

Good reads about flat top guitar voicing

Post by jorge rodriguez »

In my thread about the Blueridge guitar some members of this forum have been very heplful by providing excerpts of texts about sound and its relationship with guitar bracing and physical properties like mass and stiffness.
I have found that very interesting and unfortunately with the confinement in my country I'm going to have plenty of time so... What are some good sources about this matter?
Anything from guitar physics to tap tuning that could be helpful when trying to achieve a good sounding instrument is welcome.
If it's free and online it would be easier, but I'm also interested in books that I could buy.
If there is some list in the mimf also would be good.
Sorry if this has been talked about before.
Thanks!

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Barry Daniels
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Re: Good reads about flat top guitar voicing

Post by Barry Daniels »

The best, latest, and most scientific of the books on the subject (IMO) is Trevor Gore's "Contemporary Acoustic Guitar Design and Build" books (there are two of them). They are expensive but they totally leave behind every other book on the subject.

http://www.goreguitars.com.au/main/page ... rview.html
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Alain Lambert
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Re: Good reads about flat top guitar voicing

Post by Alain Lambert »

This is not much about voicing, but for a basic knowledge of acoustic there is: https://www.speech.kth.se/music/acviguit4/
Howard Wright thesis is also a good primer to understand all the vibrating modes. Especially the firsts chapters. http://www.hakwright.co.uk/thesis.html

jorge rodriguez
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Re: Good reads about flat top guitar voicing

Post by jorge rodriguez »

Sounds great thanks!

Alan Carruth
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Re: Good reads about flat top guitar voicing

Post by Alan Carruth »

Plus one for Gore; also Wright and Jansson (from KTH).

I wrote a series of articles on 'free' plate tuning (the 'tech' version of tap tones) for 'American Lutherie' back in '91-92, which should still be available in the 'Big Red Books'. It's maybe a tad dated, but still useful for the basics.

David Hurd's 'Left Brain Lutherie' has an interesting method of deflection testing.

I would not bother with either Somogyi's book or Siminoff. Just my opinion.

A friend of mine, Mike Mahar, wrote up an app called 'Luthier Lab' for Android. It has a raft of tools including a drafting module for making up shapes and laying out brace patterns, but a lot of it has to do with acoustics. There's a recording and spectrum analysis setup for finding resonant peaks, and a signal generator that can be hooked up to a 12-15W amplifier for plate tuning. You can take pictures of the modes, label them with the frequency, and store them in a separate archive for each project. Best of all, it's free.

jorge rodriguez
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Re: Good reads about flat top guitar voicing

Post by jorge rodriguez »

That's interesting info, thanks Alan.

Marshall Dixon
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Location: SW Oregon

Re: Good reads about flat top guitar voicing

Post by Marshall Dixon »

Agree with Alain about http://www.speech.kth.se/music/acviguit4/part1.pdf
Easy to understand examples allow you to grasp important concepts. Simple experimentation provides acoustic feedback.

I've read Alan's article and I believe it's in the Big Red Book #1. Their index is easy to check at luth.org

Also in that edition is an article on bracing by Sr. Ramirez III. That book is well worth the price. I recall there being articles about sculpting the sound in factory made guitars. People were doing it to Martins and Gibson’s back in the 70's when they were notoriously overbuilt. Many interesting articles in that one and all the others too.

I am reading Gore and Gillet now. Definitely worth it but I think that having a good understanding of Jansson’s work would be a real benefit prior to this.

The Master Handbook of Acoustics, by F Alton Everest, though not about guitars, was to me a good read on the principles of sound and the behavior of sound waves.

Clay Schaeffer
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Re: Good reads about flat top guitar voicing

Post by Clay Schaeffer »

For a more generalized book on musical acoustics, Arthur Benade's "Fundamentals of Musical Acoustics" covers a lot of ground, and does have some information on plate tuning. It is offered as an eBook for $9.99, and softbound copies can be found on the used market for about the same price.

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