A guitar pick is the point of contact between you and your guitar. When one starts learning how to play the guitar the importance of a guitar pick is not stressed enough. However, knowing how to pick the right guitar pick is essential as it affects your playing style, along with your guitar sounds. Hence, if you know how to choose one of the best guitars picks for yourself, it will improve your guitar playing experience.
While some people prefer using a small and hard guitar pick, others prefer thin and floppy picks. Some people even prefer not using a guitar pick at all, however, it is advisable not to do so. Everyone has their own preference and style of using it! Picks can be useful for a number of reasons. For instance, picks are very useful for playing single-note lines as in lead guitar or for melodic playing and even for improvising. It is suggested that you definitely use a pick when playing an electric guitar. Even for an acoustic guitar, a guitar pick is useful for strumming chord progressions.
If you thought before buying a guitar pick you only need to know about the colour, size, and shape you are wrong. That is only half the knowledge there! In this article, we will give you a detailed understanding of the key factors to keep in your mind before buying a guitar pick, along with the top guitar picks in the market now that you should definitely not miss out on.
Best Guitar Picks 2018
We have made the task of choosing the best guitar pick for yourself a lot easier here by listing you the key features, and why we recommend it for you.
Here’s a list of the best guitar picks available in the market for you.
D’Addario Celluloid Guitar Pick comes with premium quality celluloid that provides a warm and fat tone. It comes in a standard shape for comfortable playing. It is a medium gauge guitar pick that is an ideal choice for both strumming and articulate picking.
This guitar pick comes in assortments of 10, 25 and 100. They come in three types of gauge – light (0.50 MM), medium (0.80 MM) and heavy (1 MM). Ideally, lighter gauges are suitable for strumming while heavier gauges are more suitable for lead guitars. Celluloid is good for producing warm sounding guitar picks. The D’Addario Pearl Celluloid Guitar Pick is a great value for money for musicians and beginners who are looking for an affordable guitar pick.
Why We Recommend It
- Medium gauge works great for strumming and articulate picking.
- It comes in standard shape for ease of playing.
- Available in all the three standard types of gauge.
- Produces warm and bright tones.
- Great value for money and ideal for those looking for an affordable guitar pick.
Dunlop Tortex Standard 0.60mm Orange Guitar Pick is one of the top picks in the market today recommended by most professional musicians. They come in a wide variety of gauges, shapes, and sizes that allow one to pick their choice of guitar pick according to their comfort and style of playing. Whether you are looking to do a live performance or practicing at home or for a professional studio and whether you play classic country or metal, this Tortex pick from Dunlop is a widely preferred choice by a lot of top musicians worldwide. Dunlop’s Standard 0.66mm pick contains 72 orange Tortex picks.
The Dunlop Standard 0.66mm Orange Guitar Pick is an affordable and quality option for musicians as well as for beginners and you could also choose from a various range of thickness.
As the name suggests, this guitar pick is made of tortex, a good attempt to replicate tortoiseshell. As a material, tortex is very widely available and is affordable at cost. It is also clean in sounding and imparts a brighter tone, alike nylon resulting in the warmer tone. They come in three ranges of gauges ranging from 0.50 to 1.14 mm, which is a good range for playing different styles and rig. Apart from the aforementioned, orange color, it comes in five other shades – red, purple, yellow, green and blue. Apart from the above-mentioned features, they provide the good amount of volume and tonal response and strike a good balance.
Why Do We Recommend It
- One of the most affordable guitar picks.
- Widely used by professional musicians worldwide.
- Comes within a gauge range of 0.50 to 1.14 mm.
- Provides a good balance of right volume and tonal response.
- Imparts a brighter tone.
- Maximum memory and minimum wear.
The Vincent Van Gogh guitar pick collection from Creanoso is a medium pack collection of 12 that is made of celluloid. Even though celluloid is slightly slippier than tortex, it is stable enough for you to alleviate your guitar playing techniques. The sound that comes from this celluloid guitar pick from Creanoso is very warm and the sound is also relatively neutral.
The collection is beautiful with 6 impressionist art paintings that have been painted by Vincent Van Gogh which includes starry nights, starry night over the Rhones, sunflowers, irises, cafe terrace, and the bedroom. Each of the art painting design will come in 2 pieces. This celluloid medium guitar pick comes in a thickness of 0.71 mm and is very much ideal to be used with acoustic, electric and bass guitars. The tones will ideally be fat and warm and the feel will be relatively neutral. You will also get a 60 days risk-free purchase guarantee with these guitar picks from Creanoso. If budget is a matter of concern to you then these guitar picks won’t disappoint you as they are affordably priced and the art patterns make for a striking sight to see!
Why Do We Recommend It
- It can be used with acoustic, bass and electric guitars.
- The thickness of this guitar pick is medium (0.71 mm) so it won’t be uncomfortable for your fingers.
- The colours in the picks make them really striking and beautiful to play with.
- The tone produced by this pick is neutral and warm.
The Dunlop Tortex Standard guitar pick comes in a pack of 12 and is blue in color. The gauge pick is a nice one and the thickness of 1.0mm makes it ideal for loud and explosive live rock performances. This guitar pick from a renowned brand such as Dunlop has been carefully designed and gives the pick minimum wear as it is made of tortoiseshell. With this guitar pick from Dunlop being designed according to industry standard, it is a complete value for money.
The grip surface of this guitar pick is pretty smooth and works well with all kinds of guitar including acoustic, bass and electric. It does not glide through your fingers even if you play super heavy with them as they are made of tortex and the thickness is 1.0mm. The build quality is excellent and even if you find anything fancy in the design, it will serve the purpose of it being flexible, resilient and clicking sounds the way you prefer with your guitar. No wonder they are one of the top choices for musicians all over the world as it allows you to play the kind of style you want without the sound coming out too flat or too warm.
Why Do We Recommend It
- The gauge comes with a thickness of 1.0mm making them less slippery and can easily hold on to the grip of your fingers.
- They are known for their classic bright blue tone and also their catchy attack.
- This guitar pick from Dunlop is flexible and durable.
- As it is made of Tortex, they won’t glide through your fingers even if you play heavy with them.
These guitar picks are ideal for the teenage guitar lovers who love bright pink tones – an ideal choice of gifts for girls who love to play guitar be it for daughters, granddaughters, young musicians or even adult women guitarists. It is made of celluloid material which could relatively make it slippery when you play heavy with it but the thickness (0.71mm) of the gauge makes up for it. It is suitable for acoustic, bass and electric guitars.
Girly Guitar Picks Set - Medium Celluloid 12-piece- Unique Colorful Designs - Best Gifts for Girls Kids Teens Daughter Granddaughter Women - Thanksgiving Christmas New Year Holidays Presents Price: $8.99
The designs on these picks are extremely stylish and unique, which is why it is a favourite among girls. Each of the six designs are unique and comes in different colours including red, blue, pink, purple, and green with pink being the primary colour.
The fashionable part to these guitar picks is that one can even use it to make customised bracelets, necklaces, keychains, earrings, and other art and craft projects. What is even better – you get a 100 percent money back guarantee within 60 days in case you are not satisfied with the product or you find some defect in them. These guitar picks would make you want to practise learning guitar right way as they are colourful and fun! They can comfortably be used with acoustic, bass and electric guitars. You get to choose from the different colours and designs depending on your mood as well.
Why Do We Recommend It
- They are an ideal gift option for young girls.
- Made of celluloid, the quality of the guitar pick is premium and is suitable for all kinds of guitars including electric, bass and electric.
- You can even make personalised art and customised crafts such as jewelry and keychains with it.
- The price is also reasonable, and you get a 100 percent money back guarantee within 60 days if you do not like it.
If you are looking to intensify your guitar playing session, this guitar pick is for you. Dunlop Max Grip Jazz III Pick comes with a molded-in grip that gives you a tight and superior hold. It also features a combination of coarse and smooth texture across the entire gripping surface. It is made of molded nylon and gives you a sharp attack.
Dunlop has been a renowned name in the musical instruments manufacturing space and they have been maintaining their brand name for decades now. The Dunlop Max Grip Jazz III Guitar Pick is no exception to their world-class legacy. The striking feature of this guitar pick is that it comes in two great options – carbon fiber and nylon, both of which are durable in their quality. While the carbon fiber picks comes in black with noticeable fibers, the nylon one comes in red.
Another thing about this range of guitar picks from Dunlop is that they come in a smaller size compared to a standard guitar pick, however, it is thicker than most. This combination of a smaller size with a thicker pick helps the player to glide from string to string with ease when performing.
This picks also features a bevel in its design, which helps you to increase the release of the pick with great attack. This pick is excellent if you are looking to work on music, which requires fast and intricate pick work. The sound quality is similar to a nylon guitar pick. It is a great value for money for any musician looking to intensify their performance and experiment with versatile styles.
Why Do We Recommend It
- It comes in two great options – carbon fiber and nylon – both provide smoothness of surface and excellent ease of use.
- Smaller in size compared to most other guitar picks which help to glide across strings easily.
- Bevel in design which helps to increase the release of the pick with great attack.
- Extreme precision and durability of texture.
- 24 picks per bag.
These finger picks, made in America, provide smooth, comfortable and adjustable sound. They are ideal for bright, fingerpicking sound on acoustic guitar or even for banjo. One of the striking elements of this finger pick is that they are made of metal. Metal picks deliver sharper and more focused tone, unlike standard plastic picks, which produces the relatively warmer tone.
Hence metal picks are great for banjo players who focus on playing R&B and roots guitar since metal produces a nasal tone. The thickness of this pick is easily malleable and it still continues to produce a full tone in reasonable volume. The only concern for you here will be that it is comparatively smaller but that could vary depending on one’s personal preference.
Why Do We Recommend It
- Long-wearing and fine, made of silver.
- It has the right gauge to easily bend to conform to the finger.
- Sold in a pack of 4.
- Produces a focused tone compared to plastic picks.
Things To Keep In Mind Before Buying A Guitar Pick
1. Shape and Size of Guitar Pick
Guitar picks come in various different shapes and sizes depending on your level of comfort. Most of the guitar picks are in the form of a deformed triangle. There is no right or wrong guitar pick, you have to know which one is right for you. Here are some of the most popular shapes available:
- Standard: They are wide enough to provide you with a firm grip, allowing you with comfortable strumming with its gentle point. When you pick, the point tends to slide off the string that gives you a mellow tone.
- Jazz or Teardrop: They are slightly more rigid than the standard guitar picks, but the thickness is the same as a standard pick. When you are picking, they are fast in response giving you a bright tone.
- Equilateral: They are easier to hold and are great for those who look for experimenting with filing down the point, as you are provided with three tips to experiment with.
- Shark pin: This guitar pick can be used in two ways. One, as a standard pick and otherwise it can be rotated to use it as a multi-point edge to create as many contacts as possible per strum.
2. The material of Guitar Pick
The material of your guitar pick affects the way it sounds and the feel of it. For instance, if you’re going for a celluloid pick it will give you a brighter tone. Plus, they are slightly thicker than a nylon pick, which is preferred by most players because of their flexibility and grip. There are a variety of materials available to your guitar pick but here’s a list of the best ones you should choose from:
3. The thickness of Guitar Pick (Gauge)
The thickness or gauge of guitar picks varies from extra thin to extra heavy. Like the shape, the thickness of your guitar pick also affects the feel of your guitar. Here are three levels of the thickness level of your guitar pick:
- Light Gauge (0.38 – 0.66 MM): The picks of this kind of gauge are often bendy and ideal for strumming. The tone produced by it is bright and clear. If you are a beginner, we suggest you go for this one as they offer less resistance than a heavier pick.
- Medium Gauge (0.65 – 0.88 MM): They are slightly more rigid and produce thicker sound. If you are looking to use for single notes or for solo playing then go for a medium gauge guitar pick.
- Heavy Gauge (0.96 – 3 MM): they are slightly less flexible and are ideal for rock rhythm playing, or soloing styles and bass playing. We do not recommend them for strumming.
4. What Style Of Guitar Will You Be Playing?
Want to know how your guitar type affects your pick, read on to know about it:
- Lead Guitar: If you are playing lead guitar, we recommend you to go for a thicker pick, as the sound will be a lot crisper. This is so because lead guitars require more control, and a thicker pick will allow for more control.
- Rhythm Guitar: For playing a rhythm guitar, go for a softer pick because it will help you stroke the guitar strings at ease with the tip of the guitar pick. A softer pick allows for flexibility in playing different sorts of rhythm.
Now that you have gone through this comprehensive buyer’s guide, we are sure your guitar buying experience will be a lot smoother than you might have planned before. A guitar pick is a musical accessory that is often sidelined and not paid much attention to, but many at times we do not realize that it is the first connection between you and your guitar.
Therefore it is very important that the guitar pick you choose should fit into your comfort and style of playing. Whether you look for warmer tone or brighter tone will depend on your guitar pick.
So, go out there and buy the best guitar picks available in the market for you and bring your guitar playing sessions to the ultimate level of comfort.