What is a crossover guitar?
The crossover guitar is new type of guitar has made it's way onto the market in recent years. It all strated when the electro-classical guitar was born. This was done through the introduction of cutaway and electronics in classical and flamenco guitars. Once this was established, the next step was to introduce a guitar with a narrower neck with some radius. This idea was strange to some purists but once people started using them they were convinced it was the best choice. You can see the difference between a cutaway guitar vs a non cutaway guitar in the picture below.
This hybrid guitar was originally aimed at electrical guitar players and acoustic guitar players that found the neck of the classical or flamenco guitars too wide or flat to suit their playing techniques. Guitarists with smaller hands or people who feel the necks to be more comfortable than the classical guitar neck are also finding that these guitars are suitable for them.
It has the shape of classical guitar body with cutaway and a narrower neck with a radiused fingerboard. They usually come electrified with a piezo electric pickup and Preamp, but you can also buy them without the electrification system. This nylon stringed guitar offers the feel and playability of an acoustic steel string guitar whilst sounding like a classical guitar offering the best of both worlds. The video below shows Chema Vilchez playing Flamenco Jazz on the Alhambra CS-3 CW.
There are a number of guitarists that own and play electric, acoustic and classical guitars and enjoy switching from on to another and the crossover guitar makes that transition between the different types of guitars smoother.
Glossary of Crossover Guitar Terms
An indentation on the upper part of the guitar body making it easier to access the upper frets. See picture above.
Piezo Pickup (pronounced “pee-YAY-zoh”):
Commonly found in acoustic guitars like nylon string guitars, a piezo pickup is a type of microphone that picks up the physical vibration of the string and instrument and converts it to a voltage.
Short for pre amplifier, it is designed to amplify weak signals producing a clean and powerful sound.
A radiused fingerboard is where the fingerboard has a radius or curve that goes across the fingerboard in line with the frets rather than being flat.