How We Make Takamine Guitars Demos… And Why

How We Make Takamine Guitars Demos… And Why

In all likelihood, you’ve seen and heard some of the hundreds of demo videos we’ve made over the years to help you get to know our guitars. From our value-packed G Series up to our highest end handcrafted Takamine Pro Series and Limited Edition guitars, we try and make video demos for every model we make so that you can make a more informed decision regarding which guitar is right for you.

Why We Mic Them Up
On many occasions, we’ve heard from Takamine players who want to know why the majority of our demos are recorded acoustically with a microphone, rather than via the preamp and electronics that most Takamine guitars feature.

The reason is very simple. When you see an acoustic-electric guitar demo using the built-in electronics, there’s no way to tell what you’re actually hearing, or if it’s going to be representational of the guitar tone you can expect. What kind of signal chain is the guitar actually running through? Are there thousands of dollars in outboard gear needed to make the guitar sound good? Has the sound of the guitar been heavily edited with digital signal processing and plug-ins after the performance?

At Takamine, we prefer to give you the honest truth about the guitar you might be buying. We could, like some other manufacturers, boost or cut various frequencies with EQ, or do more processing with compressors, ambient reverb, or other tricks that might mislead you into thinking the guitar is something that it’s not. But we think you’re smart enough to understand that if the Takamine guitar sounds this good when recorded in its most pure state, you’re going to get that and much more when you plug it in.

How We Choose Our Demo Players
One thing that’s important to us is to make sure our guitars are demoed with a good variety of playing styles. Again, this is helpful to represent that many kinds of players out there who turn to Takamine guitars. Some of our demo players showcase their virtuoso-level skills while doing a demo, but other times, we persuade them to play more simple stuff — basic strumming and chords — that are more like what most players will be doing while writing or performing their music.

The fact is, not everyone will be using their Takamine guitar for intricate fingerstyle or other advanced performance techniques. A lot of you will be playing in pop bands or doing worship music where it’s a bigger benefit to see and hear the guitar being used in a way that’s more like how you play, more often than not.

Why We Keep Them Short
We often hear from people, “That was so good I could have listened all day! Why is it only a minute or two long?”

Again, a simple answer for a good question: you’re busy. These days, it’s more and more common for people to have less time to do the things they enjoy… like playing guitar, or choosing the next guitar that will inspire them to keep playing. We keep them short so that in less than a few minutes, you can develop a good understanding of what each Takamine model is all about.

The good news is that there is so much music out there that’s been recorded on a Takamine that you’re bound to find plenty of examples of more long-form music performances. A good plan is to look down the list of Takamine artists, then visit their web sites, social media, and YouTube channels, and then check out some of their music… especially the live performances where they use our guitars. The act of listening to and enjoying their songs will give you a much wider perspective on what’s possible with our guitars.

roni s.

We've often been asked by Takamine players why most of our demos are recorded acoustically with a microphone, rather than using the preamp and electronics featured in most Takamine guitars. The answer is simple. When an acoustic-electric guitar demo relies on built-in electronics, it's hard to know what you're actually hearing or if it accurately represents the guitar's true tone. What kind of signal chain is the guitar running through? Is expensive outboard gear being used to enhance the sound? Has the guitar's sound been heavily edited with digital processing and plug-ins after the performance. At Takamine, we believe in providing an honest representation of our guitars. While we could, like some other manufacturers, use EQ to boost or cut frequencies, or add processing with compressors, reverb, and other effects, we choose not to. We trust that you’re savvy enough to appreciate that if a Takamine guitar sounds great when recorded in its purest form, it will sound even better when you plug it in.