Diospyros crassiflora Also known as: West Central Africa Traditional Uses: Highly prized throughout many civilizations as the purest of all black wood, it has been found in the most coveted places within Egyptian tombs. Other documented fondness by royalty shows it to have been the choice material for scepters and drinking cups by the ancient kings of India.
Due to the extreme tight grain density, it is capable of polishing to a glass like finish, and can provide a genuine black color with almost no visible grain whatsoever. Most often is straight grained but infrequently might have some interlocked grain.
From a musical instrument perspective, it has proven itself time and again to be of the finest material to work with, and is known for superior tonality due to the higher density over the other types of ebony.
It has a long history as being used for piano keys, as well as bodies for clarinets and other woodwind instruments. Also, with luthiers it is prized for fingerboards, bridges and headplates in quality guitar building.
Size limitations of available stock prevent it from being widely used for the guitar body itself, but there are some out there. Few species can imitate the depth of blackness true gabon ebony affords. And when they do, it is variegated with other tones.