One thing we hear very often is customers asking about what size the 808 body can be compared to. To be honest; we can't compare it to anything! The Maton 808 body shape is unique, specifically designed by Bill May in early 70’s. We can’t be certain what the impetus might have been at the time, though of all the body shapes being built during that era, neither Gibson or Martin had anything that would seem to have provided any inspiration at the time…
The 808 body dimensions are slightly smaller than our US OM (orchestra model), though much deeper at the end block:
- Maton EBG808
o Upper Bout = 11-1/8”
o Waist = 9”
o Lower Bout = 14-3/8”
o Depth at the end block = 4-7/8”
- Standard OM (Collings, likely others such as Martin, etc..)
o Upper Bout = 11-1/4”
o Waist = 9-1/8”
o Lower Bout = 15”
o Depth at end block = 4”
As many of us look and see, the face of the 808 body shape is similar, though slightly smaller. However, the body depth is substantially deeper. This is significant, as moving the top and back further apart enhances the bass element within the tonal character of the voicing (bracing technique), complimenting the different wood combinations.
It is far superior for live performance than anything(mainly due to their AP5 Pro Pickup). This has been the reason so many famous artists choose Maton for their quality ‘plugged-in’ sound (Keith Urban, Tommy Emmanuel, Peter Frampton, and last year the Garth Brooks band during their stadium tour).