Though National Reso-Phonic is celebrated for it’s metal resonator guitars, the first instruments it produced in the years after it’s launch in 1988 were single-cone models with wooden bodies.
The sonic difference between the two materials is a subtle one, but wood tends to mellow the sound a little, which some players prefer.
The Radio-Tone, with it’s maple sides and 12-fret-to-the-body maple neck, draws some inspiration from an “old-time” National model, the 1928 Triolian; but other features, such as the strikingly attractive headstock with it’s echoes of the glamorous “Radio Days” of the 1920s and 1930s, are all its own.
Sadly, this model, the least expensive guitar in the company’s range, is no longer in production.
Don Young and McGregor Gaines created the Art Deco-influenced headstock design.