Sound Optimization & Hand Voicing
Why do Breedlove guitars sound so good? It’s simple, Breedlove guitars—from Legacy to Discovery—are made with care, with the goal of allowing you to play better, sound better and play more. But it’s also complex, with art, inspiration, craft and science merging together in service of tone. Made in Bend models feature Sound Optimization® and are hand voiced, with experienced luthiers meticulously tapping, listening and shaving away tiny curls of exquisite tonewood as they target specific, measurable frequencies that will make each unique, individual instrument sound its very best. Various wood species are carefully milled, weighed and considered, with backs and tops tuned to each other to create light, responsive guitars with superior tone and sustain. When you play a Breedlove Premier, or sit down with an Oregon, it answers your lightest touch and its notes sing for an eternity, because a Breedlove builder has made sure it will inspire you every time you open the case. Watch Video to Learn More.
Designing Revolutionary Body Shapes
In 1990, Breedlove Guitars made its mark with the distinctive Concert body shape. Ergonomic, focused and strikingly balanced, it established Breedlove as an innovator with an eye on the future and an ear to the past—melding the best traditional elements of superior acoustic sound with a modern viewpoint about comfort, playability and construction. 30 years later, the Concert has become a classic. It is a trusted, versatile platform for players of every style, with an instantly recognizable voice and a sleek, enchanting profile. Breedlove now offers guitars in four revolutionary body shapes, each linked to and informed by the Concert, which remains the most popular and influential of all. The Concerto, the largest at 16” wide, updates the dreadnought with similar volume and power, but a more complex tonal palette, perfect for driving a band or backing a charismatic singer. The Concertina, a secret weapon of sorts, pares down the Concert, landing right in a fingerpicker’s lap with 12 frets to the body and a short scale that makes for easy, expressive bends. The newly introduced Companion puts all that Concert goodness—including careful research and amazing sound—into a compact travel guitar that plays like its full-sized cousins.
Utilizing & Sustaining Exotic Tonewoods
Traditionally, guitars have been made from a variety of exotic tonewoods, often bearing enchanting names reflective of their tropical origins—species like cocobolo, ziricote, ovangkol and koa. More familiar timbers like rosewood, redwood, cedar, spruce and mahogany have an even more hallowed place in the annals of lutherie. Breedlove, which pioneered the use of sonically unique, visually striking native Oregon myrtlewood, employs all of these materials, with a particular eye towards sustainability and the health of the wildlife and humanity engaged in our world’s great forests. No clear-cut woods are used in Breedlove models, only sustainably sourced tonewoods. Breedlove has made this commitment without making any sacrifice in sound quality, build quality or beauty—and it is a commitment. Owner Tom Bedell and his team have traveled to 15 countries to ensure the compliance of suppliers, to monitor best practices and to see the forest with their own eyes. You will sound better and sleep better with a Breedlove. We have but one world, let’s keep it alive. Ask where your guitar comes from.
Crafting Your Individual Play Style & Sound
The way you play says a lot about you. And your guitar should help you express that. If you’ve been making music for years, you may have already sorted out what works for you. Perhaps it turns out you’re a chameleon, like Joni Mitchell, using a variety of open tunings to channel your muse, and you’ve settled on a versatile Solo Concert CE because you love the way the red cedar top responds to your fingerpicking, but also thrill to the way the ovangkol back and sides support your strumming—and, oh, the lush way that Side Monitor Soundhole just washes you in sound. Breedlove has classified its instruments into three broad categories of play—Heavy, Versatile and Light. These are not firm designations, but simply a pathway to finding what fits you and your preferred method of expression. If you like to bang out big chords on a loud guitar, try an all-solid Organic Collection Performer Concerto CE. If you favor a gentler approach, softly thrumming with a thin pick or opting for the clean, simple sound of skin on string, look into a Legacy Concert CE or a diminutive Pursuit Companion CE. Enjoy exploring the many options here!
How We Do It
THE SOUND OPTIMIZATION PROCESS
Tonewood Certification Program
As demand on our world’s forests and fragile environment grow, it is critical we build guitars using sustainable sourcing, including selective, individual harvest and, whenever possible, the salvage of downed timber. At Breedlove, we know the health of the earth is as important to you as it is to us. We never use wood from clear-cut trees. In keeping with our rigorous Tonewood Certification Project, we can pinpoint where the materials in your guitar grew, and how they were culled. Traveling the world, we visit the forests, confer with authorities, and work with local families and mills to make sure our instruments cause as little harm as possible. Guitars use a tiny fraction of the world’s commercially harvested wood and a single log can produce dozens and dozens of beautiful instruments. Join us in an awareness of the earth and our effect on it. Protecting the world’s forests never sounded better.