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I have seen some guitars that have a Floyd Rose SpeedLoader tremolo system.

The idea is that it uses special strings and a modified Floyd Rose tremolo. The strings have bullets at each end, rather than just at one end and are each of a specific length for their note.

Is this kind of thing worth the cut down in time it takes to replace strings?

What are the benefits and drawbacks of such a system?

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For more info: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Floyd_Rose_SpeedLoader –  Anonymous Jan 14 '11 at 11:50
    
Thanks Bill. :) –  Anonymous Jan 14 '11 at 12:04
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I suppose you could post the information in the Advantages / Disadvantages section from that wiki page and I'll accept it as an answer. –  Anonymous Jan 14 '11 at 13:28
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up vote 7 down vote accepted

A friend of mine had a guitar like this, and it wasn't too bad. One of the main bummers was that finding strings for the thing was pretty tricky. If you have to have special strings for the guitar, you have a lot less selection of strings and the different tones that different brands can provide, which is kind of a bummer. On the plus side though, the guitar was still very playable, you could down tune it just fine (with some limitations, but reasonable limitations none the less), and re-stringing can be done pretty painlessly.

In my personal opinion, I think these guitars are kind of a waste, and more of a commodity item than anything else. If you really need to have a string replaced that fast, just have a second guitar on standby that's fully tuned and ready to go.

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"more of a commodity item" I think you mean - novelty item, but please correct if I've misread. –  Anonymous Jan 17 '11 at 12:36
    
That's the word I was looking for, thanks. My mental dictionary fails me yet again. –  Anonymous Jan 17 '11 at 17:52
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I played once with this... I had an awful time trying to tune the goddamn guitar also if you palm mute to hard you will end with a unbalanced bridge... personal exp.

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+1 - I played with one in Sam Ash... As soon as my hand got near the bridge the thing was out of tune. It went back on the rack pretty quick. –  Anonymous Feb 8 '11 at 2:58
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It's bizarre that Floyd Rose couldn't get this right.

I have a Steinberger G3T and it stays in tune amazingly well - not quite up to the level of my Ibanez or Jackson guitars, but still very good.

Benefits

  • being able to pop a new string on and by fully in tune within a couple of minutes, as opposed to trying to replace a string on a normal floating bridge, which can take a couple of days to settle down.
  • No need for snips or any tools when changing strings.
  • Colour-coded at each end, making restringing that much easier (yes I have made that mistake before:-)

Drawbacks

  • need to get special strings. But they aren't much more expensive than normal ones, and very easy to get at most music shops.
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