NAMM 2020: Taylor expands its Builder’s Edition collection with four new models

Features include an innovative soundport cutaway and sustainable urban ash.

Taylor Guitars has announced the expansion of its Builder’s Edition collection with four new models from the workbench of Master Guitar Designer Andy Powers. Player comfort and sound are the main focus, with Powers’ innovative V-Class bracing system providing the platform for the new designs. The new instruments added to the collection comprise the Builder’s Edition 816ce, 912ce, 652ce (12-string) and 324ce.

This new quartet rounds out a diverse premium range that now features nine guitars in total, with Powers taking an uncompromising, “director’s cut” approach to tone, build and ergonomics. New features on display include the 816ce’s unique soundport cutaway and a guitar made from ‘Urban Ash’, a sustainable timber often found growing on roadsides in Southern California.

Builder’s Edition 816ce


V-Class bracing has been added to the Grand Symphony body style for the first time for the Builder’s Edition 816ce, featuring Indian rosewood paired with Lutz spruce.

Powers made numerous adjustments to the Grand Symphony’s body to give it a more defined identity and capable of producing an airier, more complex, “symphonic” acoustic sound. The new body design incorporates a soundport cutaway — a scoop in the treble-side shoulder that houses an off-axis soundport.

The port’s sloped position, in tandem with V-Class bracing, produces a rich, high-fidelity voice with a unique acoustic dispersion pattern. The resulting tonal output is ultra-orchestral — a six-string symphony.

The guitar also offers added touch sensitivity, due in part to its shorter 24-7/8-inch scale length and light-gauge (.012-.053) strings. Together, all these elements work together, leveraging the “lung capacity” of the Grand Symphony to generate an expansive, dynamic voice and creating a natural reverb-like effect. Premium contouring details include chamfered body and fretboard edges and Taylor’s Curve Wing bridge, along with Gotoh tuners and Silent Satin finish.

  • Soundport cutaway
  • 24-7/8-inch scale length
  • Premium conturing details

Builder’s Edition 324ce

Taylor’s new Builder’s Edition 324ce combines high-performance utility with Taylor’s commitment to environmental responsibility within its local region. The new model features back and sides of Urban Ash sourced from trees that required removal from municipal areas in So Cal due to age, safety concerns, or other factors determined by cities.


The guitar also marks the launch of a new urban forest initiative in partnership with West Coast Arborists, a company that provides tree services to hundreds of cities across California. Sonically, Urban Ash has a pleasing musicality similar to Honduran mahogany, and Andy Powers is excited to introduce it to players.

This 324ce was designed with the versatility to appeal to a broad range of players, including working musicians looking for a high-end performance tool. Together with a mahogany top and V-Class bracing, this makes one of Taylor’s most player- and stage-friendly guitars. The mahogany top levels out the front edge of the attack and amplifies well. The comfortable contouring of the beveled armrest and cutaway elevates the expressive range. Other premium features include a Curve Wing bridge, Gotoh tuners, and a Dark Roast stain and Shaded Edgeburst with Silent Satin finish.

  • Urban Ash back and sides
  • Launched in partnership with West Coast Arborists, Inc.
  • Silent Satin Finish

Builder’s Edition 912ce

The new Builder’s Edition 912ce and 12-string Builder’s Edition 652ce (below) introduce the first Grand Concert models to the Builder’s Edition collection. Both draw inspiration from the electric guitar world, bringing the comfort, precision and utility that electric players love into an acoustic experience.

Designed as a high-end acoustic with electric players in mind, the Indian rosewood/Lutz spruce Builder’s Edition 912ce boasts a rich and articulate acoustic voice that quickly enunciates every nuance of a player’s performance across the entire register. The compact Grand Concert features a beveled armrest and cutaway, chamfered body and fretboard edges, and 24-7/8-inch scale length. Together, these features translate into an ultra-comfortable acoustic that handles exceptionally well for fretting and produces a precise, high-fidelity, super-fast response like an electric guitar.

It makes a great tool for leads and most genres, from rock to jazz to fingerstyle acoustic. It’s also great for recording, and together with its high-end appointments, it will both sound and look superb on stage. Additional details include a Curve Wing bridge, Gotoh tuners, Wild Honey Burst top (or optional natural top), Silent Satin finish, and a new Bellefleur inlay in mother-of-pearl and pink abalone.

  • First Builder’s Edition Grand Concert models
  • Beveled armrest and cutaway
  • Bellefleur inlay in mother-of-pearl and pink abalone

Builder’s Edition 652ce

The 12-string Builder’s Edition 652ce once again levels up Taylor’s reputation for ultra-playable 12-strings. Pairing figured Big Leaf maple with torrefied Sitka spruce, the model will appeal to electric players with its compact Grand Concert body, sleek contouring — featuring a beveled cutaway and armrest — shorter scale length (24-7/8”) and 12-fret neck. The guitar is also reverse-strung like some 12-string electrics to emphasize the fundamental note, creating a slightly fuller, meatier 12-string sound.

With double-mounted string anchoring, each string pairing shares the same bridge pin hole. This creates a consistent break angle and produces a more even response. Together with V-Class bracing, the sound is clean and focused, remarkably in tune, and articulate in its low-end response.Premium details include a Curve Wing bridge, Gotoh tuners, and Silent Satin finish with a Wild Honey Burst around the body and neck (an optional natural top is also available).

  • Figured big leaf maple
  • Reverse strung
  • Double-mounted string anchoring

Visit Taylor Guitars for more information.