Yes, believe it or not, it actually matters.
When shopping for a hardwood floor you will see boards in various sizes.The narrower board widths are referred to as “strips” and the wider units as “planks”.
You should be aware that board width can visually impact a room.Narrow width boards will expand a room, while wider boards work well in a larger room or area.
Knowing this can give you an edge. Different hardwood floors have different edges. Hardwood floors come in either a beveled edges, or a square edge Today, most hardwood floor manufacturers are calling their beveled edge "eased edge" because the tapered edge is dramatically reduced from the old deeply grooved edges.
The beveled edges do serve a purpose. The manufacturer can produce beveled edge planks faster than square edge, which in turn lowers their production costs. Also, a beveled edge floor is more forgiving when installed over irregular subfloors and you don’t have the problem of overwood (uneven plank heights abutting each other).
The edges of all boards meet squarely creating a uniform, smooth surface that blends the floor together from board to board. The overall look of this floor gives a contemporary flair and formal feeling to the room.
Each board is just slightly beveled. Some manufacturers add an eased edge to both the length of the planks as well as the end joints. Eased edges are used to help hide minor irregularities, such as uneven plank heights. Eased edge is also called microbeveled edge.
These products have a very distinctive groove in them. Beveled edge planks lend themselves to an informal and country decor. With the urethane finishes applied at the factory today, the beveled edges are sealed completely, making dirt and grit easy to be swept or vacuumed out of the grooves.
Below are listed the relative hardness for numerous wood species used in flooring. These ratings were done using the Janka Hardness Rating, which measure the force needed to embed a .444 inch steel ball to half its diameter in a piece of wood.The higher the number the harder the wood. Although this is one of the best methods to measure the ability of wood species to withstand indentations, it should be used as a general guide when comparing various species of wood flooring. The construction and finish also play an important role in the durability and ease of maintenance of any wood floor.
Wood Species /Hardness Rating Douglas
Southern Yellow Pine (short leaf) /690
Southern Yellow Pine (Long leaf) /870
Black Cherry /950
Black Walnut /1010
Heart Pine /1225
Yellow Birch /1260
Red Oak (Northern) /1290
American Beech /1300
White Oak /1360
Australian Cypress /1375
Hard Maple /1450
African Pedauk /1725
Santos Mahogany /2200
Brazilian Cherry /2350