Previously, the reason behind the different tones that different woods create has been explained. The different tones themselves were not fully explored, though. In this article I will give a global overview of the different tone woods, the sound they produce and in some cases their purpose. This is by no means a complete picture, only a global overview.
It’s fairy common to read about sustain in guitar reviews. Some guitars have lots of it, some have less. We sometimes perceive that a guitar is better if it has lots of sustain compared to if it doesn’t. Let’s pull on a thread to unravel the tapestry of what ‘sustain’ means in a technical and musical sense.
What is it about mahogany that makes it sound so identifiable? And what about ash? Alder? Basswood? Each of these tonewoods (and many more like them) have their own clearly definable tonal characteristics, but not everybody knows why.