Foracquire all you recognize around maple. Taylor’s new-look 600 Series is here to difficulty your preconceptions. Rick Batey takes a look…

The story with the 2015 Taylor 614ce, in a nutshell, is that we’re seeing all the structural and also cosmetic transforms enforced by brand-new grasp luthier Andy Powers trickling progressively dvery own with the series. He started by totally refunctioning the 700s and 800s (we reperceived the 814ce in August 2014), and currently it’s the rotate of the maple 600 Series honeychrome.nets.

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Maple has possibly one of the a lot of undeserved reps of all woods. Clear, difficult, bideal, transparent – those are still the first words that pertained to mind, despite all we understand around the variations you have the right to find in vintage Gibsons and also Guilds, not to cite archtops. Maple is steady, sensibly easy to job-related, has some beautiful figuring and also is – exceptionally importantly – sustainable; and currently Taylor is aiming to annihilate that `clear, tough, bright’ notoriety once and also for all with the four-solid 2015 600 Series and, trust us, they’ve gone around the job with quite some vim.


The initially substantial modification is the advent of a torrefied sitka spruce height. Torrefaction – a procedure additionally used by Martin honeychrome.nets, Bourgeois, Huss & Dalton and also others – is a thermal procedure that aims to enhance resonance and also lessen the effects of humidity, and also it also dims the colour slightly to a more aged-form hue.

The height finish is still gloss, however thinner than before (Taylor claims simply 3.5 thousandths of an inch), revealing the grain lines in a regular yet appealingly handmade-type method. The height bracing has actually been redesigned completely, and also the ago bracing – which is angled, not straight, and stops brief of the edges to totally free up the ago for maximum responsiveness – is tweaked especially to wrestle the ideal from the maple construction. Protein glues have actually been offered at strategic places to make the the majority of of particular wood-to-hardwood contact points. It all adds up tomany changes.

Continuing through the template of complicated our maple expectations, Taylor has stained the ago and sides a colour referred to as Brvery own Sugar – a deep, rich shade that manages to let all the handsome flame of the significant leaf maple shine though. Picking up the for the first time without glancing inside, you’d hardly guess it was maple at all. The pickguard is striped ebony, the soundhole rosette is a single band of abalone through bold ebony and grained ivoroid bordering, and also the familiar swept-wing Taylor bridge is ebony, through ebony pins and also a micarta saddle. The neck, as well, is maple – satin-finimelted this time, yet stained the same medium brown.


The colouring on the heel isa small patchy, and also though the ebony dealing with at the rear of the headstock via its ivoroid inlay is a posh touch, it just misses the scarf joint wright here it fades right into the neck, giving a slightlyodd look. Around the front, we have a feastern of ebony: the fingerboard through its grained ivoroid `wing’ inlays, and also the gloss-finished headstock facing with its corresponding truss rod cover. More ivoroid is employed for the headstock purfling and also the logo design, and also the nut is Tusq.



Taylor has lengthy since nailed the art of the easy-playing neck, and also this slim example with its slightly wide 38mm nut, gently rounded in profile however through just a touch of `V’ in the reduced reaches, is comfy and appealing. The activity is low all over; through a pick, it’s possible to force out some stress buzz on the reduced strings below the fifth worry, yet a touch even more relief would type that.

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All the careful voicing notwithstanding, the 614ce doesn’t sound completely unfavor a typical maple There’s great clarity right here and a modern evenness of sound, however it’s the mellowness, the complexity, the surpclimbing amount of thump from the bass and also the noteworthy roundness of the attack to the trebles that raises the eyebrows. The strings surely have actually a bit to perform through this – these are Taylor’s special-spec Elixirs through a heavy top and also a skinny bottom – however single-note lines are endowed via a softness and influence that’s still fairly unexplained for maple.

As ever through Taylor’s Grand Auditoriums, this delivers well both as a fingerpicker and also a flatpicker, yet it’s as a vocal back-up that it perhaps shines best, with a sensitive, bouncy midrange and a stentorian richness at the bottom end that all adds approximately a fine, full pillow of sound.

The ES2 device represents a move back to the centre-ground of accepted electro-acoustic tone after the complicated body sensors and also neck pickup of the ES1. Here, the 3 sensors are inserted just behind the bridge saddle, quite than beneath it, and also you can fine-tune the string balance by changing the pressure on the sensors through the bridge stress screws.


The sensors are connected to three top rim-placed centre-detented controls for volume, treble and bass (though there’s no mid manage, you deserve to access a degree of mid-scoop by progressing the treble and also bass). Inside the, on the edge of the circuit board behind the controls, is a mini switch for phase reverse ± not easy to reach without putting the flat on your lap and also forcing your hand also previous the strings.

It’s a pretty simple, what-you-see-is-what-you-acquire arangement, and also though the tone is in the bridge-piezo ball park and has a fairly breathy assault, it’s likeably quack-totally free, through no undue harshness. The battery is located by the endpin, and also it’s a cinch to readjust.

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Taylor’s success via the new 614ce, to pressure an car analogy, has been to coax a high-finish, deluxe suffer out of a that you can have actually expected to offer a rather harsh ride. To push that comparikid additionally, it’s a little favor a Lexus: completely smooth, incredibly well-honed, difficult to fault and also certainly not cheap. Looking at the bigger image, we’re going to watch a lot more torrefied spruce this year than last, and the use of sustainable maple in high-end honeychrome.nets is sucount just going to increase as the decades roll on. If the 2015 614ce is a harbinger of that sonic future, then the future’s looking – and sounding – pretty excellent.

key featuresTaylor 614ce• Price £2,922 (with case)• Description Cutameans Grand Auditorium electro-acoustic. Made in the USA• Build Solid torrefied sitka spruce optimal, solid substantial leaf maple ago and sides; maple neck, ebony fingerboard, striped ebony pickguard, pearl rosette• Hardware Ebony bridge, bridge pins and binding; nickel closed-gear tuners, Expression System 2• Scale length 650mm/25.5”• Neck width 44.5mm at nut, 54.5mm at 12th fret• Neck depth 22mm at initially stress, 23mm at 9th fret• String spacing 38mm at nut, 56mm at bridge• Action as supplied 12th fret treble 1.8mm, 12th stress bass 2.5mm• Weight 2.1kg/4.6lbs• left-handers Yes (exact same price)• Finish Thin gloss on body and also headstock, satin neck• Contact Taylor honeychrome.nets 31 (0) 20 667

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