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Jazz resonator set up

Bit of a niche topic but I’m curious. I know some of you use resonators for swing and hot club music, but of course it has to be approached differently than on a selmer style guitar. What are you doing in terms of set up? What about playing style?

I’m on my second National reso and while I’ve always been under the impression that phosphor bronze strings are the way to go, after hearing Jonathan Stout swear by monels I’ve got a set coming in the mail. I’ve settled on 13’s as anything lighter doesn’t seem to drive the cone, and I can set the action a lot lower than I ever would on a Selmer copy so the higher tension isn’t a bother.

seeing as resonators in swing are apparently becoming slightly more common I’m curious to hear how others are treating it.


  • MandobartMandobart ✭✭ Mandolin, Octave Mandolin, Mandocello, Fiddles
    Posts: 100

    This is timely as I should be receiving a Gold Tone Paul Beard round neck resonator next week. I also like 13's on most of my guitars (not on my Altamira grande bouche though).

    I've been playing Ernie Ball aluminum bronze strings (.013) on my Eastman archtop since March. They deliver a more vintage, loud honk than the Martin retro monels I was using. I'll try them on my reso at some point I'm sure.

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