What is "it" for you....?

sonar1

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The LP recipe provides consistently good guitars that satisfy a lot of various guitar players.
For me, a guitar that makes me “play” the best is usually my #1.
I don’t have to pay attention to anything but staying on the “flow.”
Guitars with other fret heights or slightly different action make me pay more attention to what I’m doing or I will muff some notes.
I may use a lesser guitar that has a particular sound I want, but I must concentrate more.
I want to be set free.
Fret size and action are what I suspect determines that for me.
All my guitars are the LP scale length (even an older Ibanez jazz box), though in the past my “it” #1 go to grab was a partsotele I put together. Over time that Tele fell out of favor with me (as I aged). There came a point where I had said everything I wanted to say on that Tele, and it needed more than setup to hold my interest.
Lately LP’s give me the consistent medium/jumbo fret “feel” that makes me play well, but even so my Slash Standard is the “it” guitar, presently. I do enjoy playing my Tribute Gibsons just as much, but if my life were on the line, I’m taking the Slash.
 

PAPADON

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Same pickups and electronics, they sound the same, action is the same and I like both but for some reason I'm always drawn to the sunburst. It took me awhile but then one day I decided to weigh them . The sunburst weighs about a pound less. Duh. :slap:

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DBDM

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Both of mine are within an ounce of each other. both right at 8.5 lbs
 

grumphh

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From a wide variety of guitars (that i all set up myself by feel - medium high action) i have found that by far most are great, a few are duds and a tiny percentage will have "it".
The result is that about 90% of guitars (after i set them up to make them playable to me) are perfectly good for me and allow me to do what i want to do with them, a few get sold on immediately, and a few are just "keepers".

My personal opinion is that "it" must be the wood
.
NOT as in "tonewood" but simply because wood is pretty much the only variable in modern industrially/CNC mass manufactured instruments.

Yes, i know, there will be tiny deviations between measurements on my guitars after setup since i don't use calipers - but i call bullcrap on those being important to tone anyway... You can't get a guitar to sound like another of the same model just by adjusting them to the same specs.
....my experience has been that a guitars fundamental sound quality is pretty consistent over a wide range of adjustments.
 

rogue3

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The *it* for me is how my '87 reacts to my fingers.It decays,but then has some note swell,which can be accentuated with vibrato,before it continues to decay, with a rich,balanced midrange. Not bottom or top heavy.Its all there in the note.this one i'm playing onstage,Black Standard
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sparky2

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I have bought and sold nearly a hundred guitars in my lifetime, and currently own 20.

When I find out what "it" is, I'll let you know.

So I can stop all this guitar buying, I reckon.

:(
 

dscottyg

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I have a Standard Tele and a Vintera '50s Tele. The Vintera has all the '50s details not present on the Standard, so that one has "it" and the Standard doesn't, although there's nothing inherently wrong with the Standard.
The OP means you if you had 2 Vinteras, and one seemed better, but you couldn’t tell why. In your case you can identify the neck shape, radius, neck roughness, etc. to explain it.
 

freak

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Guitars are made from wood. All of it is different.

So the hardware, strings, electronics and set up can be identical but yet the guitars are not.

So yes, some guitars have "it" and others don't.

'wood'. It was living, breathing, growing. It had life. It stood tall in the forest for years.
Now it is an instrument, a work of art.....I think vibe and feel are part of it.
It may not be something anyone can put their fingers on. The op said thanks for the answers, but they aren't helping much....everyone's idea of 'it' are going to be different, imo. I've picked up guitars I thought were absolute dogs, and two days later they were sold....I've picked up guitars I hated to put down, only to find a month or two later they were still for sale.
It's a personal thing, is what i think it comes down to.
 

DBDM

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The op said thanks for the answers, but they aren't helping much....
It's a personal thing, is what i think it comes down to.
I knew it was kind of a "what is the meaning of life" question when I posted it. I have 20 (ish) guitars now ranging from archtops to flattops to electrics. Gibsons, Fenders, Martins and a few others. All of them I liked when I bought/traded for them...a few of them I LOVE. My usual MO is find ones I like then take em home and see if I bond with them. If not I sell/trade. Then within the ones I have bonded with, there are a few I really fall in love with and some I lose interest in after a period of time. Both guitars pictured above have made it that far, it is just one of them more. I spent this whole morning playing my orange LP (pictured) and I DO love her. I have played her very little since my epic setup thread (see link above) and her trip to Gruhns. I do think that whole journey did make her feel a little better to me (keeping in mind 'better" means "than previous but still #2 of all guitars I have owned"). I am 50 years old and have a great job. I have PLENTY of trade fodder and I am not anyone's definition of a poor man, If I want one I can acquire it. (I am no Jeff Bezos or anything but again I have guitars I can trade and enough money at the end of the month that I can get what I want within reason. I live in Nashville where guitars are under every bed--so normally I can locate most any guitar). Ill see how the black one feels tomorrow when I pick her back up.

Not pictured and not discussed is My Buckethead Signature. Kind of my mistress to play when not with my real harem. I consider it a different animal. Not just another LP (kind of like my archtop vs a flat top). Bigger body, deeper sound, thicker strings, longer scale length, wider fretboard. I store it tuned at standard (as it came from the factory) but frequently tune it down. She is a beast! Strangely, I can feel the strings vibrating in the neck more so than any other guitar I have ever played.
 

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