You know when you get a new guitar, they use terms like “Oh, it’s stiff,” or, “It needs to open up”?
I’ve recently experienced this very thing. I just purchased a Thompson Dreadnought guitar with Cuban mahogany back and sides it’s a newly made guitar, and it felt a little stiff when I first got it. In that, it wanted to be resonant, but it just wasn’t quite giving its all. It still sounded good, don’t get me wrong, it’s just a new guitar. After two weeks though it doesn’t sound so stiff, and guess what? I didn’t even play it that much…
I was talking to our Acoustic Tuesday correspondent, Matt C., over at Eddie’s Guitars, and he said, “Man, have you ever tried the ToneRite device?” I said, “No, I haven’t. In fact, to be quite honest, I’ve been a little bit skeptical about it.” Matt replied, he said, “You know, I’ve got a couple of customers that have used it to great success.” Then it totally piqued my interest, because Matt is a trusted source, and I thought, “Well, gosh, his customers are using it maybe I should give it a shot.”
I reached out to the folks at ToneRite, specifically G, and I want to thank him because he sent a couple of ToneRites for me to try. I proceeded to put the ToneRite through it’s paces and I think you’ll find my experience to be an interesting one. The Tonerite is a small plastic square that sits on the strings of your guitar, right above the bridge, and there’s a little rotary dial that adjusts the frequency of the vibration. For such a simple small device the results I got were absolutely huge.
I gotta be honest; I am pretty blown away by the transformation that the Tonerite caused on my guitars. Here’s how I experimented with the Tonerite. I set up my custom Martin maple OM with the Tonerite and then I also set up my Thompson Dreadnought with the device, and I let them run for about a week and a half. I just let them run mostly uninterrupted here at the studio. After that week and a half I went ahead and pulled the ToneRite off, and I was pretty pleased with the results.
So, the Thompson, it’s a new guitar, fairly tight, and a little stiff because it’s very young. My observations of the ToneRite’s effect on the Thompson, was that it made the guitar much more lively and much more resonant. Upon playing the Thompson after using the ToneRite, the neck was much more lively. I could really feel it in my fretting hand. Even tuning it; I’d hit the low E string to tune it, and I could feel that vibration clear through the tuning peg. I’m not talking a little bit. I’m talking a noticeable difference in terms of that guitar’s responsiveness. I noticed that immediately the guitar just kind of came alive… it just woke up.
Now, let’s go to the maple Martin. This particular guitar is one that I’ve had for three or four years. This guitar completely came alive after the ToneRite, similar to when Dr. Frankenstein created the monster with bolts in it’s neck. I thought the Martin was pretty open already and that it was already pretty responsive probably because I’ve been playing it for some time. The ToneRite made this guitar become a total beast. Just when I thought it couldn’t get more responsive, it did. I was totally floored.
Between those two guitars, I’m now a huge believer and supporter of the ToneRite device. Keep in mind, the company sent these to me, but I told G when I was on the phone with him, “My whole goal with this show is to give accurate reviews. I’m not going to give a bad review of something, I just simply won’t review it if I don’t like it.” He sent these ToneRites here on that agreement and here I am reviewing them. I am so pleased. I am truly blown away by the effect that this little contraption had on both of my guitars.
If you have a guitar you haven’t played in a bit or if you have a new guitar, I would strongly consider using the ToneRite. If it sounds like something that can help you, please, by all means, give it a try. I would also like to mention, don’t be a skeptic unless you’ve tried it because trying it out certainly changed my tune about the ToneRite.
Interesting, I just bought a Larrivee OOO-40Z Zebrano wood & due to past experience set up my Prime Vibe on it for 100 hours, pumping my favorite tunes through the transducers. Amazing results. It really matures the sound like my 15 year old L-03 Koa. It is really true, older guitars sound better if they are played.