Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

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Sentinel
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Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby Sentinel » Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:04 pm

I was all settled on ordering two Aries, but after becoming willing to actually consider a headless guitar, I'm now pretty sure I'm ready to make the switch to the Osiris 06. From the various guitars I've played with different woods. My favs have been either a plain alder body, or a mahogany body with maple top. Another wood option I'm considering for these guitars is limba. Since I do plan on getting a maple top on both guitars. I'm wondering how much adding a maple top to the alder body will effect the tone if at all? I'm not sure what the tonal deference is between a standard guitar and a headless one if any to begin with. For the neck I'll be going with maple and a rosewood fingerboard.

My concern is that the alder body with maple top may be more "snappy/bright" than I want. Since I will be ordering these guitars as identical except for color, I won't be ordering each with different woods. I sure don't want to end up not liking the guitars because I made the wrong wood choice. Maybe a limba body with a maple top would be to my liking? Are the maple caps used on these guitars thick enough to actually make a difference? Any help, info, and insight here will be appreciated.

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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby HarlowTheFish » Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:02 pm

Well, I have a CL6 with standard woods (chambered mahogany body, maple top & neck, ebony board). The closest thing to it that I own is my '03 ESP Eclipse, and both sound as powerful as a stampede of rhinos. I think headless instruments in general (in my experience) sound maybe a little more focused plugged in, but acoustically, they feel incredibly solid and resonant. From some of your other posts I'd suggest maybe mahogany with a maple top, and also to take the Fishman Fluence upgrade: the Lithiums are bright and kind of twangy, so I don't think you'll be a big fan, and Fishman offers a bunch of options if you want to replace the Moderns.
A little out of left field, maybe, but I'd also say to consider the chambering option and/or fanned frets. It just seems to add some mojo, and if you're getting a top anyway and it fits in your budget, I'd recommend it. The fanned frets make the low strings sound really big, without messing with your treble side, as well as (to me) being a lot easier on the wrist.

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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby Sentinel » Mon Aug 13, 2018 4:08 pm

I'm set on a maple neck with rosewood fingerboard. The only thing left I need to decide on is the body wood(s). I plan to go with either an alder or limba body, and each either with or without a quilted maple top. So far I just don't feel that I have enough info to decide, which is f frustrating.

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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby spudmunkey » Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:10 pm

For what it's worth (not much), here's my thoughts:

The tops on a model like an Osiris are only something like 3-5mm. It's not like a carved top where the top is 1/3 the thickness of the body, and it's not like a semi-hollow where the top wood is resonating on it's own. I can't imagine the type of wood used for a top would have any more of a change to the guitar's tone than the very act of gluing a top to it in the first place. Kinda like...if you took a 1-piece maple neck, a 5-piece maple neck, and a 5-piece maple neck with 2 mahogany stripes...I would bet that the two 5-piece necks would sound more alike than the two maple ones. No, I haven't tested this in a lab....or...anywhere, frankly. I'd love to see someone do it, though. Start with a billet of wood and knock on it...then re-saw the top off, and glue it back on, and knock on it again. Then plane that wood top off and add a top of another wood, and knock on it again. I wonder what the results would be. (Anyone want to buy me a band saw to test this? I've already got a planer)

The top of an Osiris is also carved away on one side of the body, plus it's carved away under the back of the bridge for the "scoop", and then it's perforrated by two large pickup routes, further reducing the amount of the top wood. On a model like this, and this is just my 2 cents: only get a top if you want a top due to wanting it chambered (which, again, on this model, there isn't much room left to chamber since they can only add chambers under the top and not under the bridge, pickups, control cavity, or trem cavity), or if you want to do something aesthetic like a taped-off paint line or layering woods on the bevel, or you just want that wood on the top for a specific trans finish...I don't think it's worth looking at it for tone, and I don't think it's enough wood to divert whatever the guitar's tone was going to be anyway.

The suspect the headless hardware will likely have a similar tonal characteristic of a guitar with a locking nut, since that's effectively what they have. I've seen some (not here...other places and on other guitars) say that having the strings unlocked has some sort of tonal change even though they are both still going over "normal" nut. I'm dubious.

Kiesel talks about their beefy trem block, so I have to assume it's at least beefier than average, helping with whatever beefier blocks help with. Combine that with the bridge having a slightly larger contact patch on the posts because of the pivot points on the trem side and the "roller bearing" style pivot point on the bass side vs a Floyd's knife edges, and it stands to reason that the guitar should be move "alive" than most other knife-edge trem bridges due to a larger surface area to transmit the vibrations, but again...I haven't tested this.

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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby Sentinel » Mon Aug 13, 2018 9:58 pm

Thanks spudmunkey. I've since decided I'm definitely going with an alder body. Now the only question left is, do I want a maple top or not. The only reason I would get a maple top is to get a quilt with a deep finish. Those are of course beautiful. The only thing holding me back from for sure going with a maple top is my concern that it may brighten up the tone more than I'd like.

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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby gumbynotpokey » Tue Aug 14, 2018 8:18 am

Sentinel wrote:Thanks spudmunkey. I've since decided I'm definitely going with an alder body. Now the only question left is, do I want a maple top or not. The only reason I would get a maple top is to get a quilt with a deep finish. Those are of course beautiful. The only thing holding me back from for sure going with a maple top is my concern that it may brighten up the tone more than I'd like.


Likely nothing that your hands, string choices, on-board tone choices, amp settings, and pedals can't change to your liking. For real. Your signal path is yours; it doesn't belong to the top wood. :)
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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby arahobob » Tue Aug 14, 2018 1:48 pm

Sentinel wrote:Thanks spudmunkey. I've since decided I'm definitely going with an alder body. Now the only question left is, do I want a maple top or not. The only reason I would get a maple top is to get a quilt with a deep finish. Those are of course beautiful. The only thing holding me back from for sure going with a maple top is my concern that it may brighten up the tone more than I'd like.



I had a DC700, alder body, flamed maple top, old school D26 pups.
Not suspiciously bright at all.

I wouldn't sweat it - even if the lithiums were too bright you could just toss them and put something else in.
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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby UnexplodedCow » Wed Aug 15, 2018 9:28 am

I genuinely doubt you would hear any difference between having a piece of Maple on top of Alder. I'm not a believer in tonewood for a solid-body electric. At most, I believe that the sustain changes slightly with a denser/heavier wood, and that's about it. This is borne out of many years spent experimenting with different guitars, scale lengths, and electronic circuits. At this point, I'm squarely in the camp of "electronics matter," and believe that wood choice should be dependent on cost, aesthetics, and (most importantly) mechanical durability.

Have you heard of an ash-bodied guitar having a trem anchor hole crack? What about Walnut? I haven't. Alder, Basswood (in particular), Poplar, Pine...all yes. Maple? I'd love a guitar body in that. Is it heavy? You bet. But, if it's not too heavy, and is more duable, count me in. If it looks better, such as a nice quilted Maple, then sure, why not? But for tone. Nah. I don't consider a solid-body guitar's acoustic tone to count for anything, since I've never heard (or know of) anyone who recorded one that way for its sound. Plugged in is a whole different world.

However, most might think me a heretic, as I like transistor amps as much as tube, or active pickups in many cases, though I will not argue about an EMG at 18V having more headroom than at 9V. That's not just hearsay, but can be factually backed up based on the circuitry and operation. Without getting into a huge tangent, OP, if looks matter, get that Maple top. If durability matters, get that Maple top (it will ding less). If you're worried about the tone; try various pickups, capacitors, cables, EQing, amps, speakers, and cabinets. The biggest point is to have fun doing it. Even if it's the same riff played among 20 pickup sets, it's still fun to play. I hope this may help in some small way.
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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby Doctor Turn » Wed Aug 15, 2018 10:52 am

UnexplodedCow wrote:I genuinely doubt you would hear any difference between having a piece of Maple on top of Alder. I'm not a believer in tonewood for a solid-body electric. At most, I believe that the sustain changes slightly with a denser/heavier wood, and that's about it.


While I am something of a believer of tonewood affecting the sound of a solidbody electric (heck, even different pieces of wood within the same kind of wood can drastically affect the sound of a guitar; so can saddle material; the way a bridge is mounted into the body; etc; thus the vastly different sound of for example otherwise equal Les Pauls made of the same materials and pickups), I think UneCow is right on this one. Especially regarding the hyperthin pieces used for these headless Z and O's.

In fact, I think if anything, tops darken guitars generally... I always find slab bodied guitars along the simple Tele/Strat/LP Special style of build the most acoustically loud of them all, unencumbered by glue slather in the pores of the body top and another blanket of wood sealing that body up. Just my observation, I've owned multiple good (and bad) examples of both. Could just be random happenstance of the guitars I've played coloring my opinion in a bad direction. But that's what I've seen borne out.
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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby UnexplodedCow » Wed Aug 15, 2018 11:36 am

The headpiece, nut, and saddle matter significantly. A bad nut will cause string buzz, loss of sustain, intonation issues, action problems. Same with a bad tailpiece or saddle. Poor quality metal does it, too. I have upgraded many a saddle for Strat style guitars, and noticed distinct changes going from a thin, cast saddle to a good, bent-steel one, or even to a string-saver. They all changed the sound. Changing the groove will alter the sound, as well. These things are in direct contact with the string, though.

We all hear things differently, and oftentimes very subjectively. Even if we try not to, it's still subjective. That's not really the issue at the end of the day. If one is happy with their instrument, they will play it. If that instrument lasts, and makes the sound someone likes, then it's good. Not all of it is voodoo, and we don't know everything about how things work, so it's very much a combination of art and science...and isn't that lovely?
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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby Doctor Turn » Wed Aug 15, 2018 11:46 am

UnexplodedCow wrote:The headpiece, nut, and saddle matter significantly. A bad nut will cause string buzz, loss of sustain, intonation issues, action problems. Same with a bad tailpiece or saddle. Poor quality metal does it, too.


Well... yeah. Those are all givens--but my point was elsewhere: it's not "bad" or "faulty" product affecting the sound of the guitar that I mean... it's stainless vs brass affecting the sound of the guitar (say, re saddles). Brass vs bone on the nut. And, even within the same species of wood, different "properly built" axes with identical build specs having different sounds.
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Re: Osiris 06 - Wood Choices

Postby Sentinel » Wed Aug 15, 2018 4:59 pm

UnexplodedCow wrote:I genuinely doubt you would hear any difference between having a piece of Maple on top of Alder. I'm not a believer in tonewood for a solid-body electric. At most, I believe that the sustain changes slightly with a denser/heavier wood, and that's about it. This is borne out of many years spent experimenting with different guitars, scale lengths, and electronic circuits. At this point, I'm squarely in the camp of "electronics matter," and believe that wood choice should be dependent on cost, aesthetics, and (most importantly) mechanical durability.

Have you heard of an ash-bodied guitar having a trem anchor hole crack? What about Walnut? I haven't. Alder, Basswood (in particular), Poplar, Pine...all yes. Maple? I'd love a guitar body in that. Is it heavy? You bet. But, if it's not too heavy, and is more duable, count me in. If it looks better, such as a nice quilted Maple, then sure, why not? But for tone. Nah. I don't consider a solid-body guitar's acoustic tone to count for anything, since I've never heard (or know of) anyone who recorded one that way for its sound. Plugged in is a whole different world.

However, most might think me a heretic, as I like transistor amps as much as tube, or active pickups in many cases, though I will not argue about an EMG at 18V having more headroom than at 9V. That's not just hearsay, but can be factually backed up based on the circuitry and operation. Without getting into a huge tangent, OP, if looks matter, get that Maple top. If durability matters, get that Maple top (it will ding less). If you're worried about the tone; try various pickups, capacitors, cables, EQing, amps, speakers, and cabinets. The biggest point is to have fun doing it. Even if it's the same riff played among 20 pickup sets, it's still fun to play. I hope this may help in some small way.

Good points all. There's a video I'll share here, where a guy went ahead and just used a few wood planks of different species of wood, and mounted the very same parts from one to another, and recorded the results. All equipment and settings were identical. He plays them each both unplugged acoustically, and then plugged in. Some people don't really hear much of a difference if at all, some do. Surely some of this is due to the equipment being used to listen. For me it was a stark difference, and really matched the tone difference others have described, including many master builders. In the end, they all had their own appeal, and none were inherently "bad", and to each their own. As for the relatively thinner top used on the Osiris, I've seen mentioned before here on the forum I believe, that what may actually be making any real noticeable difference with the added cap is the structural change it makes more-so than the wood itself. As you mentioned, the stiffening effect. I suppose that in and of itself could add some "snappiness", some attack to the feel and even brightness to the sound of the guitar.

Here's that vid,
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrEar7dgVwI


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