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Taylor Builder's Edition 816ce Grand Symphony Acoustic-Electric Guitar

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One of the more visually avant-garde models in the Builder's Edition collection is the Builder’s Edition 816ce. With this model Andy Powers introduce...Click To Read More About This Product

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One of the more visually avant-garde models in the Builder's Edition collection is the Builder’s Edition 816ce. With this model Andy Powers introduces V-Class bracing to Taylor's Grand Symphony body shape, with a revolutionary soundport cutaway. Andy chose this soundport cutaway to generate the airy, symphonic properties produced from a GS body in a bold new way.

According to Andy, “By adding a second aperture that’s a different size than the first one, the resonant frequency of the air that’s inside the body gets altered in significant ways, broadening the response. Additionally, there is an alteration to the timing of each note’s lifecycle. You can think of a note’s lifespan, or response curve, as having a beginning, a middle, and ending. Normally, when a note is struck, the initial attack climbs to a steep point, and then immediately drops a little and sustains before it releases and decays away. Our ears respond quickly to that initial peak, and its amplitude, or volume level, plays a role in how loud we perceive the sound. Strengthening this peak by extending it across a longer time further enhances the effect.”

By building the second soundhole into the body, Andy was able to spread the influence of the guitar’s air resonance over a wider frequency range of the guitar’s register so it wouldn’t just emphasize one small handful of notes. “As a result, when you play up and down the fretboard, the sound stays balanced — you don’t have as dramatic a change,” he says. “The lung capacity of the guitar is distributed over a larger range of frequency and a longer amount of time, so the sound comes out as very fluid. It strikes us as a strong voice that is both dynamic and filled with a lyrical musical quality.”

Considering the ample body dimensions and lung capacity of the Grand Symphony, Andy made two other important design choices that might appear counterintuitive: using a shorter 24-7/8-inch scale length and light-gauge strings, both of which are departures from Taylor's past Grand Symphony specifications. By incorporating a short scale and light gauge strings, Andy improved the playability and responsiveness of the Taylor Grand Symphony shape. The sound and feel of the Builder's Edition 816ce is a completely new approach to the Taylor Grand Symphony. It's a perfect addition to any serious guitar collection. Ships in a deluxe hard shell case made by Taylor for optimal fit and protection.

Body Shape
Compared to the Taylor Grand Auditorium, the Grand Symphony has a bigger, rounder lower bout and slightly wider "waist" area, and the bigger sound board (top) means more tonal output. Expect a meaty lower midrange and strong treble shimmer. A GS is best if you want a guitar with a robust low end, strong volume when strumming or flatpicking, and clear articulation in response to light fingerpicking attack.

Tone Wood Pairing
A Lutz spruce top voiced with Taylor’s V-Class bracing reveals another compelling side of rosewood. This Builder's Edition 816ce has a rootsy personality, emphasizing a fundamental focus that responds directly to a player's attack, while capturing all of rosewood’s classic richness. The Grand Symphony body, combined with V-Class bracing and a revolutionary soundport cutaway, delivers a powerful voice that has more projection and volume. As with all V-Class braced guitars, the sustain and "in-tune-ness" is enhanced to make the player experience even more enjoyable. The Lutz top powers the volume up a notch, producing a powerful tonal response comparable to older, high-grade Adirondack spruce, giving players a higher volume ceiling, which also shines in an amplified setting. These guitars promise to give back to players everything they put in and then some.

Electronics
Taylor's ES2 is a revolutionary pickup design that delivers the latest in Taylor’s ongoing innovation in acoustic guitar amplification. The heart of the Expression System 2 is Taylor’s patented behind-the-saddle pickup, which features three uniquely positioned and individually calibrated pickup sensors. Because the pickup doesn't sit under the saddle, the bottom of the saddle comes in full contact with the bridge, allowing all the nuance of the guitar's tone to come through clearly whether playing acoustically or plugged-in. The location of the sensors enables a more dynamic range of acoustic sound to be captured than ever before while playing plugged-in.

Together with Taylor’s custom-designed “professional audio”-grade preamp, this system produces exceptional amplified tone and responsiveness. On stage through a PA, plugged into your favorite acoustic amplifier, or direct into recording software, the Expression System 2 faithfully conveys the voice of your Taylor guitar. The Taylor Expression System 2 operates through a proprietary 9-volt battery compartment and easy-to-use volume, and active bass and treble controls.

V-Class Bracing
Taylor's V-Class bracing is a fundamental innovation in acoustic guitar design. It marks an important evolution beyond traditional X-bracing, introducing an entirely new platform for acoustic performance. It is essentially a "sonic engine" that optimizes the response of an acoustic guitar in three key ways: by boosting volume, sustain, and by largely resolving the intonation (in-tune-ness) issues that have long plagued acoustic guitars. V-Class bracing creates purer, more orderly notes that don't cancel each other out or sound "off". They have clearer, more consistent response, and the whole fretboard is brought into greater sonic alignment for a more musical playing/listening experience.

Guitars with V-Class bracing are easier to tune; the pitch sounds purer and more solid, and electronic tuners can more easily locate notes for quick, precise tuning. Other benefits: harmonics ring more uniformly down the neck, notes are louder with more projection and sustain, and notes are more consistent, i.e., upper register notes don't get choked out or swallowed. Fewer "sour" sonic qualities exist with chords; a more agreeable relationship is created between notes as they ripen, bloom and decay.


SPECIFICATIONS
Body
  • Body type: Taylor Grand Symphony
  • Cutaway: Soundport Cutaway
  • Top wood: Solid Lutz Spruce
  • Back & sides: Solid Indian Rosewood
  • Bracing pattern: Taylor V-Class Bracing with Relief Rout
  • Body finish: Silent Satin Finish
  • Orientation: Right-Handed
Neck
  • Neck shape: Taylor Standard Profile
  • Nut width: 1-3/4" (44.5 mm)
  • Fingerboard: Genuine West African Ebony
  • Neck wood: Tropical Mahogany
  • Scale length: 24-7/8"
  • Number of frets: 20
  • Neck finish: Satin
Electronics
  • Pickup/preamp: Expression System 2 Professional Audio-Grade
  • Brand: Taylor
  • Configuration: Behind-the-Saddle Transducer with Adjustable Sensors
  • Preamp EQ: Volume, Active Bass and Treble
  • Feedback filter: Onboard Phase Switch
  • Tuner: None
Other
  • Headstock overlay: Genuine West African Ebony
  • Tuning machines: Gotoh 21:1 Antique Gold Tuners with Gold Buttons
  • Bridge: Genuine West African Ebony
  • Saddle & nut: Micarta "Wave" Saddle; Teflon-Infused Graphite Nut
  • Number of strings: 6
  • Special features: Beveled Armrest, chamfered body and fretboard edges, Silent Satin Finish, Curve Wing bridge, Gotoh 510 tuners
  • Case: Taylor Deluxe Hard Shell Case
  • Accessories: None
  • Country of origin: USA

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