jesse decarlo wrote:
I'll say one thing for Taylors: at the mid-level and above, the stock pickup systems that I've heard are better than average.
Of course, when it comes to acoustic guitar pickups, that's like saying your last experience with kidney stones was better than average
I LOL'ed. I have yet to be excited by the sound of a plugged in acoustic guitar. Certainly, I have not even heard a majority of the designs though.
Regarding parts swap outs: I do it if there's a sonic target in mind... I change out things that are incorrectly implemented in 'reissues' for example--aluminum replaces zinc, bone replaces plastic, 50's wiring replaces modern wiring. Changes of this type have gotten me closer to the target.
Regarding brass, I had heard/read that brass emphasizes even numbered harmonics and is thought to be 'musical-sounding'. Orville Gibson was said to have tap-tap-tapped on the pieces of wood, listening to how they sounded, when he assembled his instruments. This seems to me to be a very solid approach to doing things. A friend, who is a Tele maniac and assembles his own instruments, said he does the same thing and this approach was endorsed by a very experienced craftsman from one of the custom shops. My friend showed me 2 unassembled bodies and necks and tapped on them to show me the musical relationships of their pairings. There were two very different harmonic relationships and I could easily hear how they each might work very well together as a pair.