The redwood soundboards on these zithers are unusually light and flexible, having just enough support to keep them from collapsing under the pressure of the strings. (The strip of black visible along the side just under the soundboard is sponge rubber, part of the non-rigid support system.) This approach affects the tone in ways that might not seem promising – reducing the sustain and allowing a thumpy sort of attack in the low notes – but it makes for a warm, woody sound that I find appealing. The two zithers shown here form a pair with complementary ranges. They can be played acoustically or through the pickups.