The Grand Auditorium 414ce responds well to an array of playing styles thanks to Taylor’s proprietary body shape and the expansive tonal palette of ovangkol and spruce. Expect a blend of power and tonal definition, especially in the midrange, so whether you strum, flatpick or fingerstyle, the 414ce is a great playing partner. Ships in a Taylor deluxe hardshell case.
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Grand Auditorium (GA)
Body Length: 20" / Body Width: 16" / Body Depth: 4 5/8"
Taylor’s signature shape embodies the ultimate all-purpose acoustic.
Our most popular and versatile body shape, the mid-size Grand Auditorium arrived in 1994 bearing refined proportions that fell between a Dreadnought and Grand Concert. While the bigger Dreadnought was traditionally considered a flatpicker’s guitar and the smaller Grand Concert catered to fingerstylists, the GA was designed to deliver on both fronts. The shape produced an original acoustic voice that was big enough to handle medium-strength picking and strumming, yet with impressive balance across the tonal spectrum, especially in the midrange, producing clear, well-defined notes that suited both strumming and fingerstyle playing. The GA’s overall presence tracks well with other instruments both in a studio mix and on stage, and singer-songwriters have embraced its utility both for composing and traveling with one guitar. Many people want a single guitar that can cover a variety of styles, which is why the GA continues to be our bestselling shape. If you want a great all-purpose guitar, the multi-dimensional GA won’t let you down.
Origin: Tropical West Africa
Used On: The 400 Series, Acoustic 4 Series
Over a decade ago, Taylor introduced the guitar world to a sustainable tonewood known as ovangkol. An African relative of rosewood, it's a great sounding wood that shares many of rosewood's tonal properties, with a slightly fuller midrange and a top end that's not quite as bright as maple. Being lesser known than rosewood, ovangkol has been a sleeper hit over the years, asserting itself as an instant contender among unsuspecting players who test-drive a variety of Taylor models.
Goes Well With: Most applications. Players who perhaps don't have predefined tonal preferences, who may be generalists in their style of play, and who are looking for a well-rounded, all-purpose solid wood guitar. It works well with different body shapes.
Natural Sound Made Simple
People love the clear, full acoustic tone of their Taylors. Why should it be any different when they plug in? That’s why we spent several years developing our own onboard acoustic pickup and preamp. Taylor’s ground-breaking Expression System® (ES) was designed to naturally amplify the warm acoustic sound of your guitar.
The ES is an all-magnetic acoustic guitar pickup system that works like a microphone to produce a pure signal and a warm, natural acoustic sound. When you plug in, you'll hear the sound of your guitar, not the sound of the pickup. No complicated controls. No tone simulators. Just a clean amplified acoustic guitar sound supported by three simple controls — volume, bass and treble.
Years of research brought us to a simple realization: Nothing sounds as true and musical as a microphone. With that as a starting point, Taylor’s David Hosler led the team responsible for the Expression System's breakthrough technology. Utilizing a unique Dynamic Body Sensor® mounted to the soundboard, a Dynamic String Sensor® embedded beneath the fretboard, and a discrete preamp, the advanced ES technology is unlike any other guitar pickup system.
The ES was designed in-house, alongside our acoustic guitars, which allowed us to build the ES seamlessly into the design of the guitar, for an integrated pickup system unlike any other. From the design and location of the body and string sensors to the voicing of the preamp, the ES is fully optimized for the Taylor sound. The elegant design, including the non-intrusive control knobs, also preserves the aesthetic of a Taylor guitar.
Inside every Taylor guitar is an important source of its unique sound: bracing. Bracing exists to strengthen the top and back of the guitar, while also allowing enough flexibility and vibration to generate tone. Bracing patterns help “voice” a guitar.
Taylor guitars are known for their balanced tonal response, and our bracing plays a role in that. The way that each brace is shaped and positioned on the soundboard contributes detailed nuances that are so critical that even slight alterations of its design, profile or thickness can result in discernable differences in tone.
You’re likely to hear about “scalloped” bracing, which has become fairly standard on steel-string acoustics. Scalloping is a shaping technique that helps lighten the bracing to prevent it from being excessively bulky, which can restrict top movement.
All of Taylor’s bracing for steel-string models is a form of X-bracing. The “X” provides a continuous flow of strength from the upper bout to the lower bout, which provides rigidity in spite of the soundhole’s location in the middle of the soundboard. We currently offer several versions of X bracing:
Standard X (used on laminate models)
This is Taylor’s original X pattern, featuring scalloped braces. Standard X bracing is used on the Baby, Big Baby, GS Mini, 100 and 200 Series.
Standard II (used on the 300-700 Series)
This version shifts the X forward (closer to the soundhole) and incorporates Taylor’s patented relief rout (see description below). These refinements enable more of the top to vibrate, enhancing the tone.
Advanced Performance (used on the 800 Series)
As part of Taylor’s 2014 voicing refinements for the 800 Series, the bracing profiles and placement were customized for each body shape to optimize their inherent strengths. The bracing scheme also incorporates side braces, which add rigidity and help maximize top and back movement. The overall effect on all the shapes is greater warmth, midrange and sustain.
CV (used on the 900 Series and up)
This version incorporates the relief rout and additional refinements, including subtle contouring differences in the scalloping. In general, guitars with CV bracing sound fuller and fatter without giving up articulation. They are also slightly louder.
The Taylor Relief Rout
Our patented relief rout is a tone-enhancing voicing technique in which a groove is carved along the inside edges of the top. This groove is similar in function to the re-curve on a violin — it “loosens up” the edges of the top, generating extra flexibility without sacrificing structural integrity. We first began using this groove in 2002. The result is increased bass and volume with a balanced tone.
Nylon-String Fan Bracing
Fan bracing is a completely different bracing style that is used on our nylon-string models. It was inspired by patterns used by classical guitar builders. Because nylon strings generate less tension, a nylon-string guitar typically has a thinner top and much lighter bracing. Our unique ladder-style pattern produces a signature Taylor nylon-string voice: an “open” sound that’s clear and bright, strong on the treble side, and long on sustain.
Twelve-strings generally employ heavier braces than 6-strings in order to handle the increased tension of twice the number of strings, and to prevent the top from being overdriven. Taylor 12-strings have thicker tops, thicker pin plates, and heavier, non-scalloped bracing, to support the top and adequately amplify the tone of the guitar. The one exception to this rule is our Leo Kottke Signature Model 12-string (LKSM), which has scalloped bracing designed to work with fat, heavy-gauge, low-tuned strings, to give the guitar its characteristic, “throaty-piano” tone.
Standard on all “ce” models in the 300 Series through the Presentation Series, the Venetian cutaway is known for its soft, round lines. The sloping peak of the cutaway will vary depending on the shape of the guitar. The Grand Concert, Grand Auditorium, and Grand Symphony have a steeper slope, while the Dreadnought and Jumbo are a bit flatter. Our Grand Concert nylon-string models also feature a subtle, flatter slope, while our 100 and 200 Series cutaway models incorporate our flattest slope.
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