Taylor’s latest rosewood grand concert.
by Teja Gerken
October 12, 2016
Taylor Guitars’ Andy Powers recently reworked the company’s 700 series, and we had a chance to check out the redesigned line’s grand concert model, the 712e 12-Fret. The guitar’s 12-fret neck, slotted headstock, and sunburst finish give this otherwise contemporary instrument a cool vintage vibe. It’s built with a beautiful set of Indian rosewood back and sides and a top of Lutz spruce, a naturally occurring hybrid that Taylor says tends to be stiffer than the more common Sitka spruce. The Lutz top should also help distinguish Taylor’s new 700 series from its other rosewood lines (the 800 and 900 series). The guitar’s tasteful appointments have also been updated, with new snowflake-style abalone position markers in the fingerboard, beautiful koa binding, and herringbone-pattern purfling and rosette cleverly made from bias-cut Douglas fir.
With its 12-fret neck and short scale, the 712e 12-Fret is about as easy to play as a steel-string guitar could be. Anyone who has struggled with playability issues should check out one of Taylor’s 12-fret grand concerts: the sheer ease of fretting could be revelatory. The 712e 12-Fret had a big dynamic range that allowed it to develop rich tone when played softly or with some force, and it had a high degree of sonic complexity.
We ran the guitar’s Expression System 2 electronics through a Fishman Loudbox Mini amp and, as we’ve experienced with other Taylors using this system, the guitar sounded essentially like its acoustic self, but louder. Overall, the new Taylor 712e 12-Fret is an excellent choice for anyone looking for an easy-playing grand concert with a big sound and high-quality electronics.
SPECS: Grand concert body with cutaway. Solid Lutz spruce top. Solid indian rosewood back and sides. Ebony fingerboard and bridge. 24⅞-inch scale. 1¾-inch nut width. Slotted headstock. Open-gear tuning machines. Expression System 2 electronics. Made in USA. $4,098 list. Taylorguitars.com
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