Taylor Redesigns 900 Series

The guitars boast a refined package of premium appointments crafted from natural materials.

EL Cajon, CA (April 17, 2015) -- Today at the Musikmesse trade show in Frankfurt, Germany, Taylor Guitars is proud to debut the redesign of its popular rosewood/spruce 900 Series. Developed by Master Guitar Designer Andy Powers, the guitars boast a refined package of premium appointments crafted from natural materials and incorporate many of the tone-enhancing innovations found in Taylor's 600 and 800 Series models, giving this luxurious class of rosewood guitars an updated voice and look.

The inspiration for the redesign began in 2014, as Powers was experimenting with wood thicknesses, bracing patterns, protein glues and other design enhancements for Taylor's 800 and 600 Series models. Because the 800 and 900 Series share the same tonewood pairing of Indian rosewood and Sitka spruce, Powers applied a similar package of voicing refinements to the 900s. In a nod to the sophisticated aesthetic identity of the series, Powers selected premium materials for the appointments, including ebony and koa wood, along with pink abalone, paua and mother-of-pearl. The resulting design showcases an abundance of rich detail that embodies the highest levels of Taylor craftsmanship.

One of the most notable new features is a hand-crafted ebony armrest on the lower bout. The ergonomic treatment elevates playing comfort and frees the player's strumming hand from dampening the soundboard. Discerning players might notice a splash of additional treble sparkle and articulation.

Powers also drew inspiration from the sea, incorporating pink abalone that was sourced from a sustainably managed fishery off the coast of Mexico's Baja Peninsula. The pink abalone and mother-of-pearl were paired for a new fretboard/peghead inlay scheme, "Ascension." The body and fretboard are trimmed in ebony binding, accented by koa purfling with paua edge trim around the guitar top, including the fretboard extension. The rosette features ebony, koa and paua in a stunning harmony of colors.

Notable tone-enhancing innovations include:

Optimized wood thicknesses and bracing for each shape: Working with the inherent tonal properties of Indian rosewood, Powers recalibrated the density of the back and sides by thousandths of an inch for each shape. To complement each model, Powers designed a bracing scheme to work with the hand-built armrest in each new model.

Protein glue: The same protein glues used in the company's redesigned 800 and 600 Series are used in the 900 Series for the critical tone-producing parts, namely for the "power train" components: the bracing and bridge-to-top joint.

Thin finish: The ultra-thin (3.5-mil) clear gloss finish used across the 800 and 600 Series is now applied to the 900s. This thinner coverage gives the tonewoods more freedom of movement, resulting in greater projection and volume.

Expression System 2: The acoustic voicing enhancements for the new 900 Series translate into a natural amplified tone with Taylor's patented new Expression System 2 (ES2) electronics. The ES2 incorporates three uniquely positioned and individually calibrated pickup sensors that are installed behind the saddle, through the bridge, to capture more of the guitar's dynamic acoustic energy.

The 900 Series will be available in the 914ce and 916ce and in limited First Edition models only at Authorized Taylor Dealers later this year.

For more information:
Taylor Guitars

A bone nut being back-filed for proper string placement and correct action height.

It doesn’t have to cost a lot to change your acoustic guitar’s tone and playability.

In my early days, all the guitars I played (which all happened to be pre-1950s) used bone nuts and saddles. I took this for granted, and so did my musician friends. With the exception of the ebony nuts on some turn-of-the-century parlors and the occasional use of ivory, the use of bone was a simple fact of our guitar playing lives, and alternative materials were simply uncommon to us.

Read More Show less

While Monolord has no shortage of the dark and heavy, guitarist and vocalist Thomas V Jäger comes at it from a perspective more common to pop songsmiths.

Photo by Chad Kelco

Melodies, hooks, clean tones, and no guitar solos. Are we sure this Elliott Smith fan fronts a doom-metal band? (We’re sure!)

Legend has it the name Monolord refers to a friend of the band with the same moniker who lost hearing in his left ear, and later said it didn’t matter if the band recorded anything in stereo, because he could not hear it anyway. It’s a funny, though slightly tragic, bit of backstory, but that handle is befitting in yet another, perhaps even more profound, way. Doom and stoner metal are arguably the torch-bearing subgenres for hard rock guitar players, and if any band seems to hold the keys to the castle at this moment, it’s Monolord.

Read More Show less