Are my ears broken?

Hey all. I recently rented an epiphone dr-100 as I want to buy a new acoustic sometime in the next couple of months and am testing some of interest to me. I thought I would attempt to do a comparison between my old fender FA100 and the dr-100. To my surprise they sound basically the same to my ears which is surprising because the FA100 has 9 year old strings and the D string is crushing into the saddle lol. Interested as to what you guys think. The FA100 is the first half of the video, the dr-100 is the second half.

Ok -

DR-100 - dreadnought ‘Featuring a select spruce top, premium tuners, and a mahogany body’
FA100 - dreadnought ‘Fender used laminated spruce for the top & basswood for the back and the sides’

They sound different. The dr100 sounds like a mahogany dred - its a more focused sound (less bass, less top end), plus the fresh strings will be helping. This is a feature of the mahogany back and sides, it helps when playing with others/in a band. The soundboard is better not being laminated so should sound louder and clearer also.

The FA100 has more bass and less bright but part of this could be the strings.

But a large part of the sound of a guitar, esp an acoustic is down to your playing, so if you play them the same they will sound very similar.

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Yeah it must be my ears because tbh I dislike the sound of both of them. Thanks for the insight!

Can’t comment on the construction as I don’t know enough about the subject, but I agree with @RobDickinson about the difference in sound between the two guitars. I’d go further and say that the DR-100 has a distinctly smoother tone and I much prefer it to the FA100 - with the caveat that for a true comparison you should restring the FA100 so that you’re comparing like with like.

I agree that you should restring the old one for a real comparison. 9 yo strings?:scream:

But, still an interesting lesson, especially that you don’t like either of them.

Are you near any large guitar store? Maybe playing a variety of very different instruments will help inform you of what you do like.

Also, who do you listen to? What sound do they have? What guitars do they use? Listen to video demonstrations of various guitars as well. What appeals to you and how can you achieve some of that (a lot will be the player and recording, but it is still helpful).

For example, I like clarity (articulation?), an even tone through bass, mid and treble, sustain, medium low action, wide nut and wide saddle spacing, short scale, smaller bodies, low tension and overall warmth.

Guitars inform some of this, as do strings and playing style.

It took a while to figure this out (I am an “over-thinker”, if it wasn’t obvious) and naturally, as a beginner of 2 + years now, I am still evolving my preferences.

Honestly, throw some new 11’s on (or whatever) and give it another 3-6 months of practice and see what you think then