Acoustic Guitar Back and Sides Options with Pictures and Descriptions

Back and Sides - Hardwoods

African Blackwood

African Blackwood


African Blackwood is Dense, Hard, Heavy, and very rare. It is known as one of the ultimate tonewoods by Luthiers and Woodwind Makers alike for its brilliance, volume, and power. African Blackwood comes from the Northern regions of Mozambique, where only locals can harvest the wood in a controlled, ecologically-friendly environment.
Black Acacia

Black Acacia


Black Acacia is closely related to Koa, with very similar tonal characteristics. Black Acacia is found in Northern California, Africa, India, and Australia.
Black Hearted Sassafras

Black Hearted Sassafras


Black Hearted Sassafras is a beautiful tone wood known for its well rounded, open sound and clear treble response. Black Hearted Sassafras comes from Tasmania, the island 200 miles off the southeastern tip of Austraila.
Black Limba

Black Limba


Black Limba is known for its well rounded tone, and is tonally similar to Mahogany. Black Limba comes from West Africa.
Bloodwood

Bloodwood


Bloodwood is very dense. It is known for its clarity, volume, balance, and response. It stays red and does not oxidize over time. Bloodwood comes from Central and South America
Bocote

Bocote


Bocote has a similar tone to Rosewood, so it is warm and sustaining with relatively good volume. Bocote comes from Central America and the Northern Amazon.
Bubinga

Bubinga


Bubinga is an African Rosewood with a beautiful, vibrant finished appearance. It is a great tonewood for clarity, volume, balance, and sparkling high end. Bubinga comes from West Africa.
Bubinga Curly

Bubinga Curly


Curly Bubinga is very similar in tone to Bubinga. Figured woods such as this are caused by growth patterns, environmental factors, and genetic defects. Figured woods can be very beautiful on a finished guitar.
Bubinga Waterfall

Bubinga Waterfall


Waterfall Bubinga is very similar in tone to Bubinga. Figured woods such as this are caused by growth patterns, environmental factors, and genetic defects. Figured woods can be very beautiful on a finished guitar.
Cocobolo

Cocobolo


Cocobolo is a member of the Rosewood family with a rich, full, well balanced tone. It has a great reputation for tone and beauty. Cocobolo comes from Southern Mexico and Central America.
Granadillo

Granadillo


Granadillo is a dense hardwood known for its bright, sustaining tone. Granadillo grows natively in South America.
Higuerilla

Higuerilla


Higuerilla is a lighter hardwood with a surprisingly bold, full tone. Tonally similar to Palo Escrito, Higuerilla comes from Peru, where it is harvested in an ecologically-friendly environment.
Honduran Rosewood

Honduran Rosewood


Honduran Rosewood is a Dense Rosewood known for balance, clarity, and equally powerful lows and highs. Honduran Rosewood comes from in and around Honduras in Central America.
Indian Rosewood

Indian Rosewood


Indian Rosewood is extremely popular and is known as a great tonewood choice for its resonance, volume, warmth, and clarity. Indian Rosewood comes from East India.
Ishpingo

Ishpingo


Ishpingo is a "newer" wood to Lutherie. It has a well rounded tone with excellent volume, fullness, and a crisp response. Ishpingo comes from Peru.
Koa

Koa


Koa, known for it's beauty and bright response, Koa has is tonally similar to Mahogany. Koa is a Hawaiian wood.
Lacewood

Lacewood


Lacewood is loud and sustaining. It is an enticing option as a tonewood due to its beautiful, exotic appearance. Lacewood is from Australia.
Macassar Ebony

Macassar Ebony


Macassar Ebony is beautiful with contrasting dark and tan colors. It is heavy and dense. Macassar Ebony has a Rosewood like tone with very nice volume, resonance, and clarity. Macassar Ebony comes from Southeast Asia.
Madagascar Rosewood

Madagascar Rosewood


Madagascar Rosewood is similar in tone to Brazillian Rosewood, with great clarity, response, volume, and depth. It comes from Madagascar, the large island east of Southern Africa.
Mahogany

Mahogany


Mahogany is a very popular choice for guitars. It is known for its stability and straight forward tone. Most of today's Mahogany comes from Africa and Brazil.
Mahogany Curly

Mahogany Curly


Curly Mahogany is very similar in tone to Mahogany. Figured woods such as this are caused by growth patterns, environmental factors, and genetic defects. Figured woods can be very beautiful on a finished guitar.
Mahogany Flamed

Mahogany Flamed


Flamed Mahogany is very similar in tone to Mahogany. Figured woods such as this are caused by growth patterns, environmental factors, and genetic defects. Figured woods can be very beautiful on a finished guitar.
Mahogany Quilted

Mahogany Quilted


Quilted Mahogany is very similar in tone to Mahogany. Figured woods such as this are caused by growth patterns, environmental factors, and genetic defects. Figured woods can be very beautiful on a finished guitar.
Makore

Makore


Makore is a less-used tone wood with a beautiful figure and a tone somewhat deeper than Mahogany. Makore comes from Western African Rainforests.
Malaysian Blackwood

Malaysian Blackwood


Malaysian Blackwood has a dense, sustaining tone similar to African Blackwood. Like African Blackwood, it is considered one of the very best tone woods for tone quality and beauty. Home to this Blackwood, Malaysia is located south of the Gulf of Thailand
Maple Quilted

Maple Quilted


Quilted Maple is known for its bright tone and short envelope, and is a good choice when a large amount of sustain is not desired. Instrument grade Maple comes from many areas of the world, predominantly the U.S., Canada, and Europe
Monkey Pod

Monkey Pod


Monkey Pod is a visually striking wood with a tonal response similar to mahogany. Originally from Central and South America, Monkey Pod now grows in many tropical regions.
Narra

Narra


Narra is not a true Rosewood, but it is also known as New Guinea Rosewood. It is a good wood choice for finger style players due to its tonal response. It is known for fullness with rich highs, sweet overtones, and warm bass. Narra grows throughout South East Asia.
Paduak

Paduak


Paduak is reddish brown in color, and browns a little more as it ages. It is tonally similar to Indian Rosewood, while being slightly harder. It is very resonant. Paduak grows in Central to Tropical Africa.
Palo Escrito

Palo Escrito


Palo Escrito is a Rosewood. It is lighter and more widely grained than Indian Rosewood, with a bright tone. Palo Escrito comes from Mexico, where it is used extensively.
Pau Ferro

Pau Ferro


Pau Ferro is also known as Morado or Bolivian Rosewood. Tonally, it is in between the straight forwardness of Mahogany and the richness of Indian Rosewood. Pau Ferro comes from the Atlantic Rainforests of Brazil and Bolivia.
Southeast Asian Rosewood

Southeast Asian Rosewood


South East Asian Rosewood is a very high quality Rosewood in both tone and beauty. It is tightly grained, producing very lively tone. Clarity, volume, rich bass, sparkling highs, and balance are all traits associated with this Rosewood. Just as the name states, this wood comes from South East Asia.
Tasmanian Myrtle

Tasmanian Myrtle


Tasmanian Myrtle is known for its strength, volume, and balance. it comes from Tasmania, the island approx. 200 miles from Southeast Australia.
Walnut

Walnut


Walnut produces a warm, clear, open, deep, voluminous tone which matches the beauty of its visual appeal. I use both California and Peruvian Walnut.
Zebrawood

Zebrawood


Zebrawood is tonally similar to Indian Rosewood. Its finished appearance is striking, with alternating light and dark lines. Zebrawood is from Western Africa, mainly from the countries of Cameroon and Gaboon.
Ziricote

Ziricote


Ziricote is a premium choice of wood for both beauty and tone. Tonally, it is clear, powerful, sustaining, and rich across all registers. It is well suited to nearly any application other than jazz. Ziricote grows primarily in the Yucatan Peninsula, Belize, and Guatemala

Back to : Information on Guitar Tonewoods for Soundboards/Topwoods

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