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NSW Australia 2500
Ph: (02) 4228 9286
390 Crown St, Wollongong West NSW Australia 2500
Ph: (02) 4228 9286
Categories > Acoustic Guitars > Acoustic/Electric Guitars > 810CE

Taylor 810CE

The rosewood/spruce 810ce brings Taylor’s latest tone-enhancing refinements to the traditional steel-string Dreadnought, blending driving low-end power with a vibrant upper register for a turbo-charged flatpicking machine. Premium appointments include maple binding and back strip, rosewood top edge trim, rosewood pickguard, mother-of-pearl Element fretboard inlay, & smoky ebony fretboard. Taylor’s Expression System 2 pickup translates that potent Dreadnought voice into a clear amplified tone.

RRP: $6,799.00 inc GST
Our price: $5,098.00 inc GST
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810CE
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Taylor 810ce Dreadnought Cutaway Acoustic/Electric guitar
 
The rosewood/spruce 810ce brings Taylor's latest tone-enhancing refinements to the traditional steel-string Dreadnought, blending driving low-end power with a vibrant upper register for a turbo-charged flatpicking machine. Bluegrassers will love the strong, crisp top-end punch in any picking circle, with robust projection across the entire tonal spectrum. Premium appointments include maple binding and back strip, rosewood top edge trim, rosewood pickguard, mother-of-pearl Element fretboard inlay, and smoky ebony fretboard. A Venetian cutaway invites lead players up the fretboard, while Taylor's Expression System 2 pickup translates that potent Dreadnought voice into a clear amplified tone.The guitar includes a Taylor deluxe hardshell case.
 
The Rebirth of the Taylor 800 Series.
Bob Taylor and Andy Powers of Taylor guitars reveal the next generation of Taylor acoustic tone.

Taylor has made a tradition of celebrating milestone years by looking forward rather than back. Their 40th anniversary year is no different. Guided by the design strokes of luthier Andy Powers and the manufacturing expertise of Bob Taylor, Taylor has reconceived its flagship rosewood/spruce 800 Series, infusing it with a sweeping array of tone-enhancing refinements. Virtually every element of the guitar's material construction was optimized: bracing, wood thicknesses, glues, finish, strings and acoustic electronics, topped off with a refreshed design aesthetic. The end result is the perfect type of musical celebration: a more inspiring playing experience.

While there are certain core qualities that Andy Powers says he strives to bring to any guitar - volume, sustain, clarity, uniformity of character - one of his driving goals in redesigning the 800 Series was to accentuate the unique characteristics of each different shape. "I want these models to have a family resemblance, but I don't want them to sound the same," he says. "I wanted to consider the 812ce, for example, not as it relates to the 810ce, but as it relates to itself."

The resulting tonal distinctions between each shape, Bob Taylor feels, are far from subtle. "I think players will really enjoy experiencing these new guitars and comparing different models," he says. "In a way, there's a rebirth of every one of them."

Design Features

Bracing

New advanced performance designs brings out greater warmth, midrange, balance and sustain.

A guitar's bracing patterns orchestrate the movement of the top and back, working with the overall body shape and tone woods to produce a unique acoustic voice. For the redesign of the 800 Series, the bracing profiles and their placement were customized for each body shape to emphasize their inherent strengths and to complement the playing styles that might suit the shape. The bracing for the back and sides of Grand Auditorium and Grand Concert models was also modified from a standard horizontal, ladder-style pattern to a slanted scheme to change the internal tension of the back. Another refinement was the addition of side braces, which add rigidity to the sides and enhance the top and back movement.With the reconfigured relationship between the top and back bracing, each shape generates a well-balanced tone whose differences are most noticeable in the midrange. "The midrange is the friendly and flattering part of the guitar," Andy Powers explains. "This sounds warmer across the board. In this case, you have this nice, cushy swell and long sustain, even with a delicate touch."

Wood Thickness

Optimized dimensions help bring out the best of each body shape.

Protein Glue

The strategic use of animal glues helps enhance the transfer of tone between important guitar components.


Finish Thickness

Taylor's new  thinner finish proves that, in the end, less is more. 

The thicker a guitar's finish is, the more it tends to dampen the tonal response. Over the years Taylor has developed innovative techniques to make our polyester gloss finish as thin as possible for maximum tonal benefits. Currently our gloss finish is sprayed using high-tech methods that incorporate a robotic unit, high-efficiency electrostatic attraction technology, and an ultraviolet curing oven. For some time now, Taylor's standard gloss finish has had a maximum thickness of 6 mils (1 mil = .001 inch), which is the industry standard for a high-quality gloss-finish guitar. But because of the tonal benefits of thinner finishes, Andy Powers wanted to reduce the finish on the 800 Series guitars by half if possible. Guided by the manufacturing expertise of Bob Taylor and Taylor's finish experts, the finish thickness was reduced more than 40 percent to an average of 3.5 mils, while still preserving a beautiful glossy luster. "We did it by calling upon all the resources that we've ever had in all our years of guitar building," says Bob Taylor.

Strings

Taylor switched to phosphor bronze strings and worked with ELIXIR® Strings to create a custom-gauge HD Light string set for the Grand Concert and Grand Auditorium.

One sign of a great guitar is its ability to sound like the same instrument from the lowest note to the highest note. A guitar's strings can play an important role in expressing this. Andy Powers began by switching from Elixir Acoustic 80/20 Bronze with NANOWEB® coating to Elixir's Phosphor Bronze NANOWEB® set. "The phosphor bronze strings have a nice, rich shimmer on the high end, with a richer, broader warmth overall," he says. More specifically, Andy explored alternative string gauge options for the smaller-bodied Grand Concert and Grand Auditorium. Andy felt the overall articulation could be enhanced by creating the right tension profile at the bridge. Some creative collaboration with our friends at Elixir Strings led to the development of a unique set, named HD Light, which blends Elixir light- and medium-gauge strings with a custom .025 gauge third string (a standard light-gauge G string is a .024; the medium is a .026). The specific gauging is: .013, .017, .025, .032, .042, .053. The custom gauging complements the construction of the Grand Concert and Grand Auditorium and yields bolder highs and fuller lows.


Electronics

The new Expression System® 2 captures more of a guitar's dynamic properties using a breakthrough behind-the-saddle design.

Another tone-enhancing design stroke is a new version of the Expression System pickup, the Expression System 2 (ES2). Taylor pickup designer David Hosler had been studying under-saddle piezo transducers and how they capture a guitar's energy as it is transferred from the strings through the saddle and soundboard.The industry's prevailing understanding had been that the top and string vibration cause the saddle to "bounce" up and down.This has long been the basis for the placement of a piezo-electric transducer under the saddle.But Hosler found that the vertical movement is heavily restricted because the string tension's downward pressure essentially locks the saddle down. That's why a traditional under-saddle pickup with piezo-electric crystals often responds with a sound often characterized as thin, brittle or synthetic.In reality, the saddle's natural range of movement is back and forth like a pendulum. That revelation led Hosler to relocate the piezo crystals from under the saddle to behind it, just barely making contact with it. The new positioning enables the crystals to respond more naturally to the guitar's energy as it was transferred through the saddle. The patent-pending ES2 design incorporates three pickup sensors that are installed behind the saddle, through the bridge, with three tiny Allen screws that calibrate the pressure of the sensors against the saddle.



Design Aesthetic

An elegant new appointment package builds on the classic aesthetic traditions of the 800s.

Binding and Purfling

One classic aesthetic detail for the 800 Series has been light-colored binding, which had evolved over the years from white plastic on Bob Taylor's early models to figured maple. The light-bound aesthetic was refined this time around to incorporate pale maple without any curl to look sharp and clean.

Andy Powers also put a lot of effort into the purfling layers that complement the binding on the top of the guitar, incorporating a thin ribbon of rosewood between the maple and the spruce top. "It really draws your eye to the body shape, acting like a bold picture frame for it," Andy says. "Whether the guitar is on a wall or a player is performing with it, you really notice the outline of this guitar in a strong way. I knew I wanted a certain amount of weight to it and thought rosewood would be just perfect."

Inlays

Because the 800 Series has traditionally featured a shell material for the rosette, Andy chose green abalone and framed both edges with rosewood to complement the top trim. A new fretboard inlay motif, featuring mother-of-pearl and named "Element," was inspired by the diamond-like shape of the different 800 Series inlays over the years. "I knew I wanted to do something that projected a diamond-like silhouette, that didn't have straight lines, and that had points somewhere," Andy explains. "And to me it needed to have a certain marriage of organic and elegant qualities. I wanted graceful curves that matched each other well and said a lot to a lot of different people. Depending on who's looking at it, the perception of what that inlay is varies widely."

Pickguard

One of the most dramatic visual distinctions of the new appointment package for the 800s is a switch from our traditional faux tortoise shell pickguard to one made of Indian rosewood. The decision also provides another opportunity to showcase the rosewood-rich heritage of the 800s front and center. The rosewood selected for each pickguard will be matched with the back and sides of the guitar, and the specifications for the grain orientation are arranged at an angle to minimize pick wear.

Reviews

The 800 Series has garnered a steady stream of raves from guitar reviewers.

  • "Remarkable consistency from string to string." Premier Guitar
  • "Taylor's most comprehensive overall tone-enhancing refinements ever." Guitar World
  • "A great guitar made even better." Acoustic Guitar 
  • "Impressive tonal and aesthetic enhancements, with truly stunning results." Guitar Aficionado
  • "A fantastic acoustic sound...very dynamically responsive." Guitar Player
  • "Every chord you play is crystal clear." Acoustic magazine
  • "The improvements broaden its versatility." Guitarist

Premier Guitar, March 2014
Premier Gear Award (814ce) Reviewer Scott Nygaard called the 814ce "a stunning-sounding guitar" after his test-drive. "Its bass frequencies are loud and fat, but not overwhelming," he writes. "The midrange is rich and smooth no matter where you are on the neck. The low-end response...is felt by the player's body as much as it's heard by the listener." Nygaard was also impressed by the Expression System® 2 acoustic electronics. "I was astonished by how well the system duplicated the guitar's acoustic characteristics, including the string-to-string and bottom-to-top balance," he reflects. The bottom line: "Considering how well suited this Taylor is for so many musical settings, you'll rarely wish you had another guitar instead."

You can watch Nashville guitarist John Bohlinger's video review demo for PremierGuitar.com below.

Guitar World, March 2014
Platinum Award (814ce) Guitar World writer Chris Gill described the new 800s as "nothing less than an entirely new generation of Taylor guitars." Of the 814ce he reviewed, he says: "The tone of the new 814ce delivers much more character and personality than before, with richer, warmer midrange, sweet and bell-like treble that caresses instead of cuts, and bass response that's a little looser but not boomy." He also noted the "more natural sounding amplified tones" of the Expression System® 2 electronics, declaring that the ES2 "sets a new standard of excellence for piezo pickups."

Acoustic Guitar, March 2014: Reviewer Teja Gerken took note of the 814ce's envelope-pushing versatility. "The instrument is just as suitable to strumming chords as it is to playing jazz voicings in standard tuning or fingerpicking in alternate tunings," he writes. "There's a reason why the taylor 814ce has been a popular choice for players who want one guitar to do everything, and this latest version just raises the bar." Gerken also was drawn to the guitar's low action and comfortable neck profile, calling it "virtually effortless to play," and referring to it as "a very 'alive' guitar." he referred to the expression system® 2 as a "brilliant" pickup, and after playing the 814ce through an aer compact 60 amp, remarked that it "offers the immediacy and presence of a typical saddle pickup, but it has a warmer attack than most, and a complex tone, overall."


Guitar Aficionado, March 2014: Writer richard bienstock admired the many sonic and aesthetic upgrades to the 800s, including the thinner finish: "the new 800s still boast a gorgeous high-gloss sheen without the tone-dampening effects of thicker finishes," he observes. bienstock called the package of refinements "impressive - and in some cases radical," and appreciated the comprehensive approach of the redesign effort. "The new 800s don't only play and sound great - the aesthetic touches are top notch and incredibly thoughtful," he reflects.

Guitar Player, May 2014 Editors' Pick Award: Editor Art Thompson loved the setup of the 814ce he reviewed and noted that the intonation "helps to make everything sound focused and coherent." The end result: "a fantastic acoustic sound with deep lows, nice midrange bloom, and a top end that exhibits an uncanny blend of clarity and warmth.... picked lightly it sounds radiant and dimensional, yet it doesn't compress when you strum or flatpick it aggressively."

Thompson also lauded the expression system 2's breakthrough design, calling it "a significant advancement in amplified sound by essentially giving the pickup more room to breathe." after playing it through several different acoustic amps, he praised the balance from top to bottom, observing that it exhibited "no honkiness, harsh transient spikes, or plastic-y piezo artifacts." he was also able to get plenty of volume without feedback issues. "this guitar succeeds on so many levels," he concludes, "and taken in total it would be hard to imagine a situation where it wouldn't excel."

Acoustic Magazine, May 2014: David Mead from the UK's Acoustic Magazine marvelled at the comprehensive package of refinements brought to the 814ce he reviewed, noting that "this wasn't a redesign that was undertaken casually - these guys are serious!" Tonally, he compared the new acoustic voicing to an 814ce he had reviewed last year, which he recalled had a slightly compressed effect in the trebles. Of the new version, he writes, "the trebles are clear and very strong indeed and the basses sound like they've perked up considerably, too. The most striking thing is the separation between the notes, though, as every chord you play is crystal clear with each component part clearly audible." Mead also felt the guitar had a played-in sound right out of the box, and he was quite keen on the sound of the expression system 2 pickup, calling it "more breathy" and natural. "There's a transparency to the 814's electric voice which i think will find friends amongst a variety of styles," he adds. The end result, he concludes, is "a positive redefining of an already highly regarded instrument and Bob Taylor can be justifiably proud of the result."

Guitarist, May 2014: Veteran guitarist scribes dave burrluck and mick taylor teamed up for their review of an 814ce. among the tonal character changes they noted: "the midrange sounds bolder and less 'scooped'... there's also a little more thickness to the highs, and the guitar feels like it's got more to give, volume-wise. but the new guitar also feels more intimate... the ga always has plenty of bass, helping it ape a classic dreadnought, but also meaning fingerpicked basslines sound strong." plugged in, they compared the es2's amplified tone to that of the magnetic es and felt the es2 had a "bolder, lower midrange: a thicker sound, less 'polite' than the lower-position sound of the es 1." they also compared the es2 to a pickup system on another guitar brand and wrote that the 814ce/es2 had "a more natural low end without that 'quack' - the taylor definitely seems to deal with percussive pick attack better right across the guitar's range, from high-to-low."

Their final verdict: "The improvements to the acoustic sound of the guitar...broaden its versatility - especially for fingerstyle. It doesn't compromise Taylor's renowned clear voice, but does seem to bolster the midrange and thicken up the highs a little....We can only conclude that one of the finest modern electro acoustic guitars has just got better."


 

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