Rolf Spuler, was an engineer, artist and musician who combined these talents to come up with, what is consider to be, one of the most beautiful and innovative guitars – the Paradis Avalon. Based in Switzerland, Rolf Spuler’s aim was to design a player friendly acoustic-electric guitar that would stay true to it’s natural sound at any volume.
Rolf Spuler said he dreamt it, around 1988, inspired by the mystics of the mother of his son and called it Avalon. The technology is what Matthias Grob created the years before, but new was the thin top and the nylon strings on a rather hollow body. Rolf Spuler called it hybrid guitar later. So it was a big hit at the Frankfurt Fair in 1991, when he presented his concept for the first time. But lacking business experience, Rolf Spuler accepted to build 250 of them for a price that was not realistic. so he worked for years without really earning, and then gave up, exhausted, took a job and designed machines. Matthias was busy with the Echoplex in Brazil, so Paradis Guitarworks ceased to exist in 1995.
In 2005, he started again by created the company Rolf Spuler GmbH and called the instrument Paradis. He added a headstock since some customers had complained about the tuning on the back and about the "broken" or even "weapon" look of the the headless Avalon. The electronics became a lot more sophisticated.
Available in both steel or nylon string versions this guitar can play at incredibly high volume and remain natural sounding without feeding back. The Piezo pickup system is an original design and features a hexaphonic arrangement where each string can be individually tuned to sound perfectly balanced, dynamic and open. In stereo operating mode the strings can be separately assigned to either left or right channels. Also single string channels are ideal for midi systems and modern multi-channel sound modeling. Another innovative feature is Mr. Spuler’s use of polybass which generates a resonance below the fundamental frequency of the strings. This phenomena is partly responsible for the extra warmth provided by truly fine acoustic guitars. The is accomplished by passing the signal through a tuned circuit that detects the fundamental and generates a lower octave which is mixed back in a user controlled amount which produces an extra warmth in the bass range (lower 4 strings). Phase interference is eliminated by a patented “priority mode” circuit that continuously analyses which strings are plucked giving priority to the lowest octave. The resulting sound is a fairly subtle fattening and enhancement of the bass notes.
From the first year of production, the guitar is #27 of only 350 ever made for worldwide distribution. It is in excellent original condition with an original Paradis Polysubbass unit and the original factory supplied guitar connection cord. The guitar also has the factory original flight case.
The headless version is the original "early" design. The guitar itself is a work of art, yet absolutely functional and very sophisticated. The pointed head is actually 2 Low frets for the low E string. There is a small thumb actuated button which acts as a 'spike' or 'capo' for the low E, which effectively makes it an instant Drop D tuning mechanism, the difference being your chord fingering doesn't have to change!
Paradis players include: Jose Neto, Al DiMeola, Andreas Vollenweider and Bela Fleck.