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Taylor T5 Custom - Koa Reviews

4.5 stars based on 11 customer reviews
Questions about the Taylor T5 Custom - Koa?

Questions about the Taylor T5 Custom - Koa?

Or call us at (800) 222-4700

Sweetwater Advice

  • Robert Williams

    This series of guitars is really puts the "Electric" in the electric/acoustic guitar arena. Great fit and finish makes for great eye appeal on top of a very comfortable neck and well balanced body. The controls are easy to get to and provide usable tonal options.
    Here's a hybrid that really works for a variety of players.

  • from Crete IL June 6, 2015

    Taylor T5 Custom

    Love my new Taylor T5 Custom. Excellent service plus fast shipping! These guys stand behind their words!!

  • from San Jose, California June 25, 2013Music Background:
    Pro Musician


    This guitar is FANTABULOUS!!! At first, it obviously catches a lot of attention. It has a beautiful Curly Koa top with a wonderful Sapele body and it just functions perfectly. I read and watched some reviews and it seems as if some aren't so impressed by it. I, however, am very impressed! I love the idea of the 3 pickups. The E.Q. controls are very simple, yet sensitive, so you get huge control over the basic sound. The 5 way switch is phenomenal. The 1st position is the most acoustic sound, great for Country. However, it's not a perfect acoustic sound like a regular acoustic guitar, but it's very close. It just has a tad bit of thickness to it. The 2nd position is even thicker, making it great for Jazz and solo gigs, especially if you play jazz. The 3rd position is more snappy, making it awesome for Blues lead guitar. However, all you need to do is add a distortion, and you're ready for some heavy metal or death rock. The 4th position takes you back to thickness again, giving you a nice Rock 'N Roll sound, good for rhythm. And then finally, the 5th position, which is the fattest. It's also great for Rock 'N Roll lead guitar. Overall, this is a versatile, beautiful, and flawless guitar. Don't ever back away from it. It does exactly what it's supposed to. Have Fun!!!

  • from Rutherfordton, NC April 4, 2013Music Background:
    Musician, and studio owner.

    Beautiful Instrument

    Well made, sounds great, and plays great. Great neck, and the acoustic when used with the stereo plug running through the PA sounds very real, and warm. Good EQ and just a great all around guitar.

  • from Charlottesville, Virginia September 29, 2011Music Background:

    The Taylor T5... a really amazing instrument !

    Long before purchasing the T5, I spent most of my time on a Martin D28. Then I installed a piezo pickup on the Martin and ran it through a Roland AC-60 acoustic amp. My interest then lead me to purchase a Taylor 8 str. Baritone which I also ran through the Roland. I was having great fun with this setup, but the whole electric side of guitar life was passing me by. And so began my love affair with the T5. This is one beautiful guitar. The craftsmanship and innovation that goes into this instrument is stunning. Really. Plays like a dream. Plugged into an ABY switch, then through a Roland XL 80 and the AC-60, the creative options are wide open. Toss in a looping station and you're a one man band. I am having WAY too much fun !!!

  • from Texas April 8, 2011Music Background:

    Found the Guitar for me.

    After trying a different guitar from Sweetwater I returned it and ordered the Taylor T5 Thinline Fiveway Natural. It is a great guitar hands down! The workmanship from Taylor is top drawer. The T5 fills the bill between an Electric and Acoustic guitar very well. Mike Soper from Sweetwater did a super job helping me end up with the guitar I was looking for. Thanks Mike, the T5 is great!

  • from Jackson Mississippi November 20, 2006Music Background:
    Weekend Musician

    Oh Holy Moley !!!!

    I am loving this guitar!!!... changed to acoustic strings.... Tight and well finished...so many sound combinations straight from the pickups... Sharp well made good looking case...Swings from rich acoustic to tasty electric....easy to play...Comfortable neck !!!

  • from Vancouver, WA. USA October 13, 2006Music Background:
    Guitar playing pastor of worship arts

    Taylor T 5 is worth the money!!

    Taylor's T 5 guitar lives up to its claims! I own a Fender Telcaster B bender and a Gibson ES 335... and I am able to cover a variety of guitar tones. However, Taylor's T 5 does introduce new guitar sounds, due to its inovative active pick-up system. Visit their website and listen for yourself. I own a Koa T5 love the grain of the wood. I needed to find a guitar where I could play acoustic and electric tones off the same guitar. The T5 thinline does that and more. The acoustic position #1, sound like a concert size acoustic, mix in some bass and it sounds fuller. This guitar has the ability to shred as well... I play mine thru a Vox Tonelab SE, and it represents all of the amp/cabs offerred. Taylor offers excellent customer support and their website is very informative. Pick-ups positions 2 thru 5 are good: the middle humbucker can sound like a tele, but add bass and you will get the Gibson humbucker sound. It won't replace your existing guitar, but I can't imagine not owning one. I lead worship at my church and needed a guitar that would allow me to cover a wide variety of music: blues, rock, country and R & B.. this guitar does it all and more!

  • from December 2, 2016

    Still going...

    I've had this guitar for going on 9 years now.

    On the surface, it has several clear shortcomings. Acoustically, it doesn't cut it, the body volume just isn't there. Electrically, it eats 9-volt batteries. Never leave the jack in it when you're not playing! The top two strings buzzed and I ended up having to stick a couple of shims under the treble end of the bridge. Two or three of the 5 pickup selector positions are indistinguishable, and the range of available tones isn't nearly as wide as they claim. When the transducer is selected, feedback can be truly nasty. The high E string has a way of slipping off the frets (very little clearance there). And the purchase price can be intimidating.

    And yet, while quite a few guitars have come and gone in the meantime, this one remains a keeper. The tone the humbuckers make when selected is about perfect. The neck is comfortable and easy to play, and the guitar is lightweight enough never to become a pain. This is one of those guitars that you simply don't want to put down and can't wait to pick up. For the last couple of years, it's had more play than all my other guitars combined, and it's hard to say exactly why.

  • from Hawaii October 9, 2013Music Background:


    I tried this guitar at a local music store not too long ago, and admired it's physical beauty. I am a koa freak. I must have everything in koa. I have been in search for a new acoustic guitar for years. This thing just caught my eye so quickly that I had to try it out. I think it does great with the electric voices, but the acoustic voice doesn't sound great. It sounds like a generic acoustic pickup, rather than a Fishman Aura or the Expressions system. So I'd say if you want to get a versatile electric voiced guitar, definitely stick with this bad boy!

  • from August 18, 2011Music Background:
    Recording (Steinburg) Musician Vocalist

    T5 purchase

    Unlike my Taylor acoustic this guitar MUST be plugged in to appreciate...so if your a purist you might want to try it first before purchasing. Good action and fun to play.
    I am happy with the T5...It is absolutely well made and beautiful. The acoustic setting are great and the sound is a lot like my Taylor Acoustic plugged in..but then put it into electric gear with the variety of humbukers and I like the chunky sounds. Attach it to module and it plays anything and any sound. The five settings give it a variety of changes crank it up and it covers all styles of music. I play on a worship team and also in a band and do mostly pop, country rock, folk, rock so my style is not heavy but I get to add some real neat electric nuances to my music without changing guitars and having to re-tune during a set. By the way Sweetwater was great, fast service, phone call and email to see if I was satisfied...impressive!!

  • from Kingston, WA March 13, 2013Music Background:
    Semi-Pro Musician/Hobbyist

    Not What I Expected

    The guitar itself if pretty good. The setup on the guitar is a little wonky with the 2 high strings actually having string buzz. I adjusted the truss rod slightly and got rid of most of it without raising the string height too much although I'll probably take it to the shop and have it worked over. Plugged in, the guitar sounds great and is very flexible although not much more flexible than my VOX SDC55. Playing it unplugged is not something I would do for long periods of time as it doesn't really carry very well. Even the cheapest of acoustic guitars would do better as far as sound volume. The koa top is beautiful and really the best feature of the guitar. Honestly I would expect more from a $2900 guitar. Would I buy it again, up to now I would say no but we will see long term if she gets much stage time.

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