Homestead models: different shapes of guitar bodies
At Homestead Guitars, we offer a variety of guitar shapes for customers to choose from. Besides the appearance, the shape of the guitar’s body also produces different tonal colors and a different feel when you wrap your arm around the guitar’s body. The best way to get to know the differences between these models is to try them out yourself, which you can do in our showroom.
The most important factors in choosing the right guitar model are the playing comfort, the sound and the ‘looks’ of the model.
Let’s start with the playing comfort. Choose a model that you can easily play on. If you are relatively short, don’t get a Jumbo model, otherwise the guitar may cause pain in your arm or back. Guitarists with chronic back problems also often opt for a smaller guitar model.
A second factor is the sound of the guitar. With a smaller body, e.g. the Orchestra Model (OM), the higher notes resonate more relative to the mids and lows, while with a larger/wider body (Jumbo, Dreadnought) the lower notes dominate slightly more relative to the mid and high. Keep in mind that the sound of the guitar is determined by several factors, such as the wood species and a 12-fret or 14-fret (neck and body) connection (see also under FAQ). But the design of the guitar model also has an influence. So it’s not just about size. A Dreadnought is often said to be good for strumming and country, while the OM is more appreciated for fingerpicking. Also, the placement of the waist (the narrow part of the guitar) and its width change the way the vibrations move in the guitar and this can have a small effect on the sound. This all remains very personal and the best thing is to try out different models and choose what you like best.
Finally, the appearance of a guitar can also influence the final choice. This is also very personal. For example, the OM, Jumbo and Grand Auditorium have a thinner waist than the Dreadnought. The Dreadnought guitar is named after an early 20th century English battleship. The Dreadnought guitar is in fact much larger than, for example, the compact Parlor or Parlor model that was common until then. Some guitars have a cutaway. A cutaway has a clear function (see also under FAQ), but is sometimes also bought because of its appearance on the guitar.
Below we discuss various common guitar models with the associated common opinions.
Traveler is the smallest body shape Homestead has to offer for six string guitars. As the name says, it is a guitar for a traveler, but not only. The traveler model is also a perfect guitar for the couch and also for the guitarist looking for a compact size guitar to play with. In terms of tone, Traveler guitars produce higher pitched sounds compared to other guitar shapes. This is due to the smaller sound box and the shorter length of 590 mm with which the traveler guitars are equipped. Although small in size, the standard use of Adirondack spruce (AAA grade) on all of our Homestead guitars gives our Traveler-sized guitars the long sustain of our other models. Owners of Homestead traveler guitars have been amazed at the sound their guitar can produce since they first played it. True to its name, each Homestead Traveler guitar comes with a gig bag with 2cm padding instead of the (heavier) case for the other models. [Buy our Traveler model] [Customize your Traveler model]
The Parlor model in general is one of the first steel string acoustic guitar models. Until the early 20th century, this was the most commonly built acoustic guitar model, mainly because it was affordable. The name Parlor comes from ‘salon’ where (according to the stories) the lady of the house could receive her guests with singing and guitar. The Parlor developed into the blues guitar par excellence in the 1920s and 1930s. The Parlor model is the second smallest model (after the traveler) from Homestead. It has a slim sound box and a scale of 610 mm. Due to its slim size and shape, the Parlor guitar has a distinguished mid-tone compared to other guitar models that tend to be larger. The slim size also gives a more relaxed playability where you can effortlessly rest your arm on the body of the guitar. The standard use of Adirondack AAA grade top (the best top wood for acoustic steel string guitars) provides a long lasting sound and a unique timbre compared to other Parlor guitars. Every Homestead Parlor guitar comes with a gig bag with 2 cm padding. [Buy our Parlor model ] [ Customize your Parlor model]
The Orchestra model is the best model for the fingerpicking style. The mid-sized body clearly articulates each note and produces more intimate sounds when played lightly. Compared to a larger model, the volume the Orchestra Model produces is not loud. But we offer two depth sizes: the standard 9.5 cm / 11 cm thickness and the extra thick 11 cm / 12.5 cm thickness. Due to the extra thickness of the last option, the volume of our OM is loud enough to compete with the volume of the larger models. Another way around the volume problem is to use electronic pickups, for example when playing along with other loud instruments. The average size of the body of an Orchestra model is very comfortable for most guitarists. The guitar is neither too small nor too big. The thicker depth gauge is no thicker than any other model, which should not give an uncomfortable feeling to the guitarist used to playing acoustic guitars, be it a classical guitar or a Dreadnought guitar. The thinner side size is more comfortable to play compared to a wider one. Our Orchestra Model guitars come with an ABS case with the Homestead logo embossed on the case cover. Proud owners of Homestead Orchestra Model guitars are Geroge Kooymans, Ernst Jansz, Barry Hay, Simon Kirke, David Becker, Joost Dijkema, Bas Phaff. [Buy our Orchestra model ] [ Customize your Orchestra model]
Grand Auditorium is one of the best-known models among steel-string acoustic guitars. This guitar falls under our larger guitar models. The Grand Auditorium has a nice round shape and the body is large enough to produce power for an acoustic guitar. The round and large size makes the Grand Auditorium guitar good for strumming, fingerpicking and flatpicking (with pick). An all-rounder guitar compared to the other models. The bottom width of our Grand Auditorium model is 39.5 cm wide. The guitar has, after our Jumbo model, the second widest size at the bottom of the body. For many guitarists, this size is a perfect fit. The Homestead Grand Auditorium model comes with the Homestead logo embossed on the hard case cover. Grand Auditorium model has been selected by many great guitarists, among others: George Kooymans, Jan Hendriks, Frank Carillo, I Wayan Balawan and Vladimir Tkachenko.
[Buy our Grand Auditorium- model] [ Customize your Grand Auditorium-model]
The Dreadnought is one of the oldest and most widely produced steel-string acoustic guitars. The dreadnought was first invented by CF Martin of Martin Guitars in 1916. The dreadnought model has a squarer shoulder and wider waist compared to the other models. Due to the wider waist, the upper wood section is wider compared to Grand Auditorium. This makes the dreadnought model more robust for a heavy strumming style and a little less graceful for a fingerpicking style. Our dreadnought model has a wide side measurement, 11 cm at the neck side and 12.5 cm at the tail side. This gives more volume acoustically. Thanks to the Adirondack spruce we use as our standard top, the tonal balance* is still clear, even though the dreadnought produces a high sound volume. The dreadnought models have been selected by, among others, the following guitarists: Boudewijn de Groot, Laura Beekman.
[Buy our Dreadnought- model] [ Customize your Dreadnought-model]
Dreadnought Slope Shoulder-model
The Dreadnought Slope Shoulder (DS) model is similar to a dreadnought model, except it has a rounder shoulder instead of the square top of the body of a regular dreadnought. The bottom of our Slope Shoulder Dreadnought is wider than the bottom of a normal dreadnought, and the top is narrower. In terms of size, both a regular dreadnought and a slope shoulder dreadnought are a similar size. The size of the side of the Slope Shoulder is also the same as a regular dreadnought. Due to these two factors, the volume of both Dreadnought models is almost the same. Our Dreadnought Slope Shoulder has a balanced tone thanks to the Adirondack Spruce top that we use as our standard top. But in terms of the color of the sound, the sound spectrum of the slope shoulder model is between regular Dreadnought and a Grand Auditorium; higher attack than the Grand Auditorium and softer sound than the regular Dreadnought. Homestead Dreadnought Slope Shoulder model has been selected by, among others, the following great guitarists: Eddie Seville, Tim Easton, Laura Beekman. [Buy our Dreadnought Slope Shoulder Model] [ Customize your Dreadnought Slope Shoulder Model]
The Jumbo model is the largest model Homestead Guitars has to offer. The bottom bolt is 51.5 cm wide. Due to its large size, the Jumbo model creates the loudest sound of all the models we have to offer. Although this model is the loudest, the tonal balance is still perfect, thanks in part to the use of Adirondack Spruce as our standard top.
Many guitarists who visited our showroom and tried the Jumbo model noticed that the lower (bass) tone sounds a bit heavier compared to the other models. But when you focus on the higher (treble) note, you also hear beautiful sparkling tones. The balance between low, mid and high is amazing.
Speaking of playing style, the Jumbo gives a particularly nice sound for strumming, the sound created by strumming is wide and loud, but still balanced. The Jumbo model is also good for flat-picking style (using pick) and fingerpicking, but the latter will have a slightly less intimate sound created with the loudly built Jumbo model. But this is also very personal and many professional players prefer the fingerpicking sound on a jumbo.
In addition to 6-string guitars, the Jumbo body is also used for the Homestead Baritone guitar and the Homestead acoustic bass guitar.
Some of the great guitarists who have chosen Jumbo models for their own Homestead guitars are Danny Vera, Spike van Zoest, Leoni Jansen (standard and baritone guitar) and the late Henny Vrienten (baritone guitar and acoustic bass guitar).
*What does it mean:
Tone Balance: The same level of volume between high tone(treble), middle tone (mid), and low tone (bass).