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Taylor Model 514 Koa

Guitar & Gear Reviews

Taylor Model 514 Koa


Man 1: Well, we have a lot of Taylor fans on the site too. They’re the most incredible guitars.
Man 2: Well, they’ve built some really well made, gorgeous… I mean look at this. This is Koa, another controlled wood. We talked about Brazilian Rosewood but you can’t get it. What’s really frustrating is the people who cut down the Brazilian Rosewood trees don’t care. They’re going to cut the tree…
Man 1: Yeah. It’s a pay day for them.
Man 2: Well, it’s not even a pay day. You know what? Because they can’t sell, they burn them. Because the farmers in the Brazilian rain forest, they want the land.
Man 1: They need it out of there.
Man 2: So, they cut down these beautiful trees and since the government won’t let them sell them, which is not why they cut them down. They burn them!
Man 1: OK.
Man 2: So, instead of generating revenue for the country of Brazil and the farmers and stuff they’re just up in smoke.
Man 1: Wow. So, Koa is not quite that endangered yet?
Man 2: Well it is.
Man 1: Overprotected, but…
Man 2: Unless I’m mistaken and I have been today already. Koa is exclusive to the Hawaiian Islands.
Man 1: It is? I have a Koa guitar.
Man 2: They very much control it, so it gets expensive. But it’s a beautiful looking piece of wood. And it has an interesting tonals. It’s actually dare I say, a nasal quality. Very mid rangy, you get an all Koa guitar, particularly an all Koa Martin and you’ve got all this fat, warm mid range which is great for the slot key kind of stuff. [Strums guitar] Now Taylors typically are a very bright guitar.
Man 1: Yeah. Brighter than I would have expected.
Man 2: With a lot of sub harmonics, not much mid range, so by building a guitar out of Koa, [Strums guitar] you get a very balanced guitar. All guitars are professionally tuned. [Strums guitar] So, Taylors likes to do this thing every spring and fall, they’ll do a limited release of instruments. This is a 5/14, 14 body styles call their brand auditorium.
Man 1: So it’s the size of the…
Man 2: It’s actually, the lower bow is just about the size of a dreadnought but has a smaller upper body, makes it comfortable to hold. The I series traditionally is mahogany back and sides, but for the fall limited they did it with Koa. And they do some fancy stuff with the inlay. We have some customers that wait for the limited editions.
Man 1: Blue special, yeah. [overlapping discussion]
Man 2: For 25 years they’ve been buying every time a limited comes up they’ll buy one.
Man 1: OK. We just need those people’s phone numbers.
Man 2: But Taylor does such amazing attention to detail. I like that they use wood binding.
Man 1: That’s nice, yeah. Nice touch.
Man 2: And a wood Rosetta. I’m not big on the mother of pearl and abalone. They did these nice little … I don’t know what those are.
Man 1: Go on, describe those to us. Me either.
Man 2: They look like a wave, or a part of a wave.
Man 1: Looks like some kind of surfing logo.
Man 2: But, very tastefully done. [Strums guitar] Taylors have a great delicate sound. [Plays guitar] So, they’re great for finger picking stuff. The strumming stuff, they’re unlike a Martin.
Man 1: Or even roomy.
Man 2: They’re really good where they’re used a lot in Nashville and LA and in studio sessions where you need that guitar tonality. [Strums guitar] Now the strings come in. Then there is the piano and choir. We don’t hear it now. We’re not in heaven. So, if we do that same thing on the HD28 which is the opposite end of the scale. [Strums guitar] There’s no room. When we’re done with the Martin everything else is… Where are we going to put it? So, Taylors are really excellent guitars if you got three or four guitar players you need to blend them in.
What I tell people is I like to use a Taylor when I’m in an ensemble situation. If I’m doing a solo show, I need all of this because my voice isn’t that wonderful.
Man 1: You need the whole band.
Man 2: I need this to support my voice. The other thing about it is it just feels real warm. For years I would say, Walker playing on stage, because the Taylors [indecipherable 04:53] the electronics they plug in they sound great immediately. Whereas with the Martin you have to work with it a little bit and for years they didn’t even have an electronic option. So, on stage with Taylor, if I want to sit at home in front of the fire and impress my best girl. [Strums guitar] But! There’s room for both. We have customers who have four or five Martins and six or seven Taylors. But again, we’ve got 40, 50 Taylors and again…
Man 1: What’s in the other half of the room? That’s only the other half of one wall.
Man 2: And again, at this point we’re very low in stock. Manufacturers due to the economic pressures have learned not build everything they can. So, Taylor and Martin are back ordered on their prime selling guitars. And Martin is the 16 series, the working class guitars. In Taylors it’s the three’s and four’s. These are instruments that sell for between $1, 500 to $2, 500 which is affordable for a working musician. If they want a real quality instrument.
Man 1: Collectors tend to stay away from those.
Man 2: Yeah.
Man 1: Those you don’t really collect.
Man 2: Here’s an instrument that has a street price of $2, 900. Not a whole lot of money in some circles, that’s five car payments. We have a lot of people who are fortunate that are in silicon valley, while there are a lot of people out of work there are also a lot of venture capitalist. They have that money they should be putting people to work with, we won’t go there.
Man 1: OK.]]>

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