Piano and Keyboard lessons from Glenn Sutton in Poway and San Diego

Timber And The Way Your Guitar Sounds

Home page

Interested in learning the electric, bass or acoustic guitar? Need lessons in the Scripps Ranch or Sabre Springs area? Would you like to learn to play your favorite songs?

Contact Glenn Sutton at 619-306-3664.

Every guitar is built in the same basic fashion. They all contain the same parts and work in the same general way. Some have more knobs than others and they can even have two fret boards and 12 strings. However, each guitar will sound slightly different from another. The timber that is used to build your guitar plays a big role in how your guitar will sound. If you know how the timber affects the guitar, you will be able to choose one that will give you the sound you are looking for.

While the strings are what really make the sound of your guitar, the timber your guitar is built from affects how the strings vibrate. When it is combined with the pickups and the strings themselves, you get a complete package that sounds different from another guitar. Construction plays a big part in the overall sound. For example, a solid body instrument is going to have a different sound from a hollow body guitar. Even the way the pickups function and move affect the overall sound.

Each timber gives the guitar a different quality when it comes to the overall sound. The following is a list of the most common used timbers in guitar construction with a brief overview of what you can expect when it comes to the sound of your guitar.

Mahogany – considered a hardwood, mahogany is used in numerous different part of the guitar. It gives the guitar a midrange sound with a good resonation. It is a warm brown color and makes the guitar look good.

Honduras mahogany wood acoustic guitar

Honduras mahogany wood acoustic guitar

Ash – typically used in the body of solid body guitars, ash gives the instrument a nice midrange sound with a fine resonance and sustained ring.

Rosewood – offering a wide range of colors and tones, this hardwood is typically used in the fret boards of the guitar.

Maple – this dense hardwood is usually used in the guitar neck, giving the guitar some nice tonal characteristics, especially in the treble ranges.

Alder – a good, cheap timber that is similar to ash, alder is used in inexpensive electric guitars.

There are other woods that are used in the manufacturing of guitars but these basic woods will help you understand how the sound is affected. As you learn more about playing and guitar construction, you will be able to narrow down the exact tone you are looking for out of your instrument and then shop for one built with the wood that helps give it that tone. The guitar sound will also need to fit your style so keep that in mind when you go shopping.

Phone Glenn Sutton at: 619-306-3664 or email: guitarman.glenn@gmail.com

Bass Guitar

Services include:

  • Electric Guitar Lessons
  • Bass Guitar Lessons
  • Acoustic Guitar Lessons
  • Keyboard Lessons
  • Piano Lessons
  • Organ Instruction
  • Learning to Write Music
  • Advanced Improv Techniques
  • Performance Techniques



  • Rock
  • Classic
  • Folk
  • Jazz
  • Improv
  • Blues


  • Sabre Springs
  • Scripps Ranch
  • Poway
  • San Diego
  • Rancho Bernardo
  • Rancho Penasquitos
  • 4S Ranch