Spruce vs Mahogany vs Koa – we take a look at the differences between the woods on the Taylor GS Mini and how they sound

When it comes to the best travel guitars, there are many options out there, but there are very few that have garnered such a good reputation or have been as well received as the Taylor GS Mini. The explosion in popularity of these guitars can be partly attributed to the fact they are essentially a smaller version, or shrunken version of their highly popular Grand Symphony (GS) guitar range and actually produce a sound far louder than the other mini-guitars out there.

The goal with the Taylor GS Mini was to produce a guitar that would sound (or get as close to) the same as a full-size guitar, maintaining the rich tonality and booming tones that we’d come to love from the likes of the Grand Symphony and other full size acoustic guitars. However, one thing that stands out with Taylor guitars is their commitment to producing professional level guitars at mid-level prices, without ever compromising on the tonewoods they use.

Speaking of tonewoods, the Taylor GS Mini now comes in a variety of different tonewoods bringing you a world of tonal options. But where do you start? What wood is better for you? Will you choose a SpruceMahogany or Koa top? Why would I choose one over the other? Well fear not, in this blog, with the help of our guitar experts Sam and Meg over in PMT Portsmouth, we’re going to discuss the different options and how they sound. But first, here's a little run down of each guitar. If you like, just skip to the end to hear how they sound!

Round One! Taylor GS Mini with a Spruce top

Taylor GS Mini-E RW Rosewood Electro Acoustic Guitar - Top Wood - Spruce

Taylor GS Mini-E RW Rosewood Electro Acoustic guitar

First up we have the Taylor GS Mini-E RW Rosewood Electro Acoustic guitar with a Sitka Spruce top. The combination of Rosewood back and sides and a Spruce top provides a bright and articulate tone - making this guitar a good all-rounder for all genres. Bright and loud, the convex back panel allows for more projection so you can hear each note extremely clearly. If you like a louder volume from your guitar, this is ideal.

Round 2! Taylor GS Mini with a Mahogany top

Taylor GS Mini-E Mahogany Top Electro Acoustic Guitar, ES-2

Taylor GS Mini-E Mahogany Top Electro Acoustic Guitar, ES-2

The Taylor GS Mini-E Mahogany Top Electro Acoustic Guitar, ES-2 guitar provides a slightly more mellow feel with a focused mid-range. This guitar is ideal for blues players or those who like a slightly darker sound from their acoustics. The mahogany top is warm, earthy and resonant without becoming overbearing when you ring out the big chords.

Round 3! Taylor GS Mini with a Koa top

Taylor GS Mini-E Koa Electro Acoustic Guitar

Taylor Koa

The tone of the Taylor GS Mini-E Koa Electro Acoustic Guitar has been described as having a focused mid range yet with a more articulate tone than that of the mahogany. The Koa tonewood offers a little more bite and attack, similar to the likes of the Spruce but with a lot more warmth.

Taylor GS Mini Comparison – It’s Spruce vs Mahogany vs Koa!

Check out our Taylor GS Mini comparison video where we battle Spruce vs Mahogany vs Koa! Listen to how these guitars sound in the hands of two different guitarists and how each style of wood may be suited to certain players.

The best thing to do is try out each Taylor GS Mini for yourself and find out which sounds best to you. You may like a more punchy option with a Spruce top, an earthier sound from the Mahogany or a little more attack and bite from the Koa GS Mini.

Check out the full range over at PMT Online or visit your local PMT store to try one of these gorgeous guitars for yourself.