Who doesn’t love guitar gadgets? I know I do, and I bet you are, too! The problem is that most of them don’t work. So today I gathered a list of 31 guitar gadgets that actually work. It took me a while to check them all out, and I even reviewed a few of them separately because they were so cool. Some of these guitar gadgets are technology-based, but most of them are just the result of looking at things from a new angle.
Some of these guitar gadgets have cheaper alternatives listed below them that you might want to check out, too.
#1: D’Addario O-Port
Acoustic / classical guitar sound enhancer. I am really in love with this product, especially because when I bought it a year ago I didn’t think it was going to work at all. I also featured it in an article I wrote about cheap acoustic guitar upgrades and in a dedicated review I wrote about it. The O-Port is a very simple guitar gadget designed to enhance the tone of your acoustic or classical guitar, and the installation couldn’t be simpler. If you’re about to change your strings, just install it when the strings are off. Otherwise, all you need to do is to lower the tension on your strings, place it in the guitar’s soundhole, and tune your guitar back. The material is soft enough to make sure it won’t scratch the guitar by accident.
Check out D’Addario O-Port on Amazon
#2: Planet Waves Screeching Halt Soundhole Cover
Electric acoustic feedback eliminator. This is one of these guitar gadgets that make you ask yourself “how did no one think of that earlier?”. It’s so simple, yet effective. It allows you to play your electric acoustic guitar at a much higher volume without the risk of awful feedback. At $7, this is a real steal. The installation is very simple and similar to O-Port’s. You just place it inside the soundhole, and you’re good to go. Being that thin, you don’t even need to detune your guitar that much.
The Screeching Halt will also help you practice the guitar a lot more quietly, so if you found yourself needing to practice the guitar in silence, this might be a game changer for you.
Check out Planet Waves Screeching Halt on Amazon
#3: Ibanez MTZ11 Quick Access Multitool
A guitar multitool to carry in your case. Ibanez’s multitool is an extremely useful guitar gadget. It contains 11 different tools, including a Flat-head screwdriver, 2 Phillips screwdrivers, 6 hex wrenches, a tube spanner, and a ruler. It’s well built and very reliable, and even though there are cheaper alternatives out there, I’m more than happy to keep one of these in my case.
Check out Ibanez MTZ11 Quick Access Multitool on Amazon
Cheaper Alternatives to Ibanez MTZ11
#4: DROP guitar strap adjuster
Adjust your guitar strap length in seconds. This guitar gadget took a massive pain point and just solved it in the most elegant way possible. DROP sits between your strap and the guitar and extends to whatever length you want it to in one simple press. It fits all guitars, straps, and strap locks.
Check out DROP on their official website
#5: D’Addario Guitar Dock
Turns any table into a guitar hanger. This simple device will prevent your guitar from falling if you’re like me and tend to lay your guitar against your desk unprotected. I bought a few of these and placed them in a few key areas, such as the studio, living room, etc. It works on almost every flat surface (as long it has something to hang on to) and requires no drilling. I’ve been using these with acoustic, bass, classical, and electric guitars.
Check out D’Addario Guitar Dock on Amazon
#6: Black Mountain Thumb Picks
Go back and forth between fingerstyle and flatpicking on the fly. Black mountain’s thumb picks can be used either as a thumb pick or as a normal pick. It allows you to play through different parts of a piece switching between fingerpicking and hybrid picking on the fly. They come in a few gauges and shapes, so you really want to check out their variety pack to see which one you liked the most. My personal favorite is the Jazz Tip one, with normal spring tension. If you want to learn more about them, check out the full review I made about them.
Check out Black Mountain Thumb Picks on Amazon
#7: BOSS WAZA-AIR Wireless Guitar Headphones System
By far, the most advanced headphone amp in existence. This is a lot more than just an amp modeler in a pair of headphones. The only way I’m able to describe this guitar gadget is that it’s like a VR set for your ears. There are so many different features for this device (that comes with an app, too) that I won’t be able to do it justice by just trying to write them down one by one.
When it came out, at the end of 2019, I was in my “Anderton’s” phase (you know what I’m talking about). As soon as I saw this video I started saving for it, and to this day, this is my number one technological guitar gadget.
Check out BOSS WAZA-AIR on Amazon
#8: Heet Sound PLUSEBOW Plus EBow for Guitar
Handheld guitar sustainer and synthesizer. Being a sound design geek, I originally bought this guitar gadget to help me with making a drone sound I wanted for a track. When I got it, I found that it’s just as useful in gigs and jam sessions as it is in the studio. What it does is vibrate a single note, controlling its entire envelope (attack, decay, sustain, and release). By controlling any sound’s envelope, you can give similar sounds a very different feel. Make a guitar sound like a flute, your only limit is your creativity.
Check out Heet Sound PLUSEBOW on Amazon
Cheaper Alternative To Heet Sound PLUSEBOW Plus EBow for Guitar
#9: Donner Acoustic Guitar Piezo Pickup
A great and ready-to-go piezo pickup. Traditionally used on acoustic guitars, this little guitar gadget is a ready-to-go piezo pickup you should definitely check out. Don’t get me wrong, tradition is awesome, but I like it better on my semi-hollow electric and I even enjoy it on my solid body electrics. It just adds a unique characteristic that I really dig. Being a pickup that uses its own output, if you have an amp that can take 2 different signals, you can really experiment with different combinations of it and your built-in pickup. It will also help a lot with recording an acoustic guitar, which can be a bit tough sometimes.
The thing that really bothers me (you can call me a nitpicker now) is that the text is upside down. I, as the player, can read it just fine, but if you stand in front of me, you’ll probably think I Installed it wrong.
Check out Donner Acoustic Guitar Piezo Pickup on Amazon
Cheaper Alternatives To Donner Acoustic Guitar Piezo Pickup
#10: SAPHUE Guitar String Cleaner
Guitar strings cleaner kit. Cleaning your string every now and then is highly recommended. It removes dirt and sweat that got inside, effectively making them sound as good as new and last a lot longer. This strings cleaner kit is not much different than others in the market, but it is the one that worked the best for me.
Check out SAPHUE Guitar String Cleaner on Amazon
Cheaper Alternatives to SAPHUE Guitar String Cleaner
#11: Black Mountain Slide Ring
A slide that doesn’t take from your fretting abilities. Black Mountain’s slide ring isn’t technically a guitar gadget, but it acts like one. This, too, is a great innovation made by Black Mountain. It solves a huge problem guitar players have with their slide “costing” them a fretting finger. This is a design twist on a guitar slide, making it about the width of a ring. Allowing you to switch between playing slide to regular fretting on the fly. It’s a bit pricy, but it can really help you explore other styles and sound combinations very few products can. I’ve covered it in a full review I wrote on Black Mountain. The slide ring itself is a bit costly, but it is worth every penny.
Check out Black Mountain Slide Ring on Amazon
#12: VOX amPlug 2 Guitar/Bass Headphone Amplifier
The most recognized line of headphone amps. This little guitar gadget needs no introduction. It has a rotating 1/8″ PL plug that easily connects to any guitar I ever tried it on and a headphone output. It’s simple, and it looks like the guys at VOX put a lot of effort into making sure they don’t over-complicate it. VOX amPlug 2 is operated by 2 AAA batteries and has an additional aux input in case you want to jam with a backing track. It has tone, volume, and gain controls, 9 decent built-in effects, and the bass model has 9 different rhythms to choose from. It might sound a bit too “flat”, but no more than playing with any headphones plugged into any amp. If you need any additional confirmation that this is a decent product, Victor Wooten said that he uses the bass model himself.
Check out VOX amPlug 2 Headphone Amp on Amazon
#13: Marshall MS2 Battery-Powered Micro Guitar Amplifier
1-watt guitar amp you can put on your belt. When I bought it, I was a bit surprised by how big it was compared to what I imagined at first. This amp is about 4″ wide and 5″ tall (about 10cm X 12.5cm). This fact makes it a lot more usable. This battery-operated mini amp comes with a belt clip, so you can carry it around with you, volume and tone controls, and a channel switch that goes between clean and overdrive. This is a lot of amp for such a small package, and especially for the price. It also includes a headphones output, that you can use to connect to your audio interface if you want to record a cool riff you just thought of.
Check out Marshall MS2 Micro Amp on Amazon
#14: Orange Amps Crush Mini 3W Analogue Combo Amp
3-watt mini SSD amp you can hold in your hand. I bought this amp after I already had the Marshall MS2 Mini for a while, so this time, thankfully, I estimated the size properly. This mini amp comes with the regular things you can expect: volume, tone, and drive controls, a 4″ speaker, headphones output, and another input to let you play with a backing track from your phone. It also comes with a surprisingly accurate chromatic tuner with sharps and flats. The biggest thing about it is that it actually sounds like an Orange amp.
Check out Orange Crash Mini Amp on Amazon
#15: Iron Age Guitar Kill Switch
A temporary guitar muter – A kill switch is a button usually placed on the body, next to the knobs. When you click it, it mutes the guitar until you release it. It’s a lot of fun, and pretty useful, too. Installing a kill switch is not a complicated task, but it does require some soldering and drilling. So if you’re not comfortable with it, you can always ask your guitar tech to install it for you (in that case, you might as well buy directly from him). I like this one because I had it installed for 5 or 6 years and it’s still as good as new.
Check out Kill Switch for Electric Guitar by Iron Age on Amazon
#16: Hammer Jammer
Makes your guitar play like a piano-ish. Hammer Jammer takes tapping to the picking hand. It sits on the bridge and allows you to hit “keys” that activate the hammers that, in turn, hit the strings. It works like a piano and sounds like a mashup between a celeste and harpsichord. I like it because it sounds cool, but more than that, I loved it because it inspires me to think differently. My picking hand is usually used to hold a pick and do its thing, but when I introduced an alternative way of plucking the strings, all the muscle memory it had became useless. All of the sudden, I had no more go-to’s, and I found myself going for notes I usually wouldn’t go for. The kit comes with the Hammer Jammer, 2 sets of hammers (soft and hard), and an installation manual.
Check out Hammer Jammer on their official website
#17: Piranha Bow
A different take on a guitar bow. When I think about guitar gadgets, I usually think about something that was invented a few years ago, or funded with a cool Kickstarter campaign. The Piranha bow, on the other hand, is in production since 1992 and is still hand-made by the one who invented it. It’s somewhat similar to Pickaso (see below) in sound but different in everything else. I feel like Piranha was harder for me to master, but once I figured it out and developed a “feel” for it, it became an extension of my hand, just like a guitar pick. Piranha bow works on electric guitars too, which is a big advantage it has over Pickaso, and it costs a bit less. It doesn’t come with rosin, so you need to buy that yourself.
Check out Piranha Bow on Their official site
#18: The Chordinero Capo
Individual string capo for creative open tunings. Imagine a capo that can press each string on a different fret. This awesome guitar gadget does just that. It takes a few seconds to get the hang of it, but after a few times, you’ll be changing tunings in seconds. The build quality is very decent, and even though the rods might feel a little floppy at times, they actually hold the notes better than most fingers, so no complaints there either.
Their webshop is a bit all over the place, and all the prices are shown in Swedish Krone, which is a bit annoying. Just bear in mind that a Swedish Krone is about 1/10 of the US Dollar. There are essentially 2 products that most players should look into:
- G05 – a bit more expensive
- S14 DT (or S14 DT Slim) – the basic version.
I have the S14 DT, and I find it more than enough for me, but you can check out their comparison chart to see which model suits your playing needs.
There is a piece of leather used to stabilize the device on the neck of your guitar, but there is a vegan option you can get instead if you contact them.
#19: Fishman Neo D Magnetic Soundhole Pickup Series
Turn your acoustic to electric acoustic in seconds. Well, maybe not seconds, but really fast. The Neo D series consists of three different models: Single coil, Humbucker, and Humbucker with feedback buster. They all require no battery (as they’re all passive), and sound really good in my opinion. The difference between them is a matter of taste alone. They cost between $49.95 to $99.95, depending on the model.
Cheaper Alternative To Fishman’s Neo D Series
Turn your guitar into a banjo. Well, not really. But it does have the same vibe, the “Sitar-ish” sound of a string not moving freely. It is relatively easy to install, it sticks to the body between the pickups and doesn’t harm the finish when being removed. Even though the installation is simple, setting it up took me a good few minutes. It needs to gently touch the strings to make them “twang” but not too much to kill the sound. I found this guitar gadget very cool sounding, it has a lot of the characteristics of a Banjo, but you can still hear it’s an electric guitar (didn’t like it on an acoustic that much). What bothered me the most is that it’s not so comfortable, no matter where I put it. Note: It won’t stick to a curved body.
Check out Guitar-Jo on their official website
#21: Kaki King – Passerelle Bridge
A Koto bridge for guitar. I know this list is not shy of guitar gadgets that make your guitar sound like other instruments but hear me out for a few seconds. This is one of the most creativity-inspiring guitar gadgets I’ve ever put my hands on. To use it you need to lower the tension on your strings and put it directly on the 16th fret (creating a perfect fifth between the 2 sides of Passerelle). After you made sure that all of your strings seat properly in the groves, just tune it back up to whatever tuning you want to experiment with and start playing. When I first got it, I tried Kaki King’s suggestion of tuning it from low to high on the right side to G#, F#, D#, B, G#, D#. It didn’t take me too long to start experimenting with my own tunings.
Check out Passerelle on Bandwear
#22: Fishman TriplePlay Wireless MIDI Guitar Controller
Compose full pieces using nothing but your guitar. This is more than just another guitar gadget, way more. This is a wireless midi pickup that actually works! I learned to play the piano when I was a kid, so playing a midi keyboard is not a big challenge for me. Still, the instrument I feel the most comfortable composing and playing on is a guitar.
The awesome gadget will make your guitar into a fully functioning midi controller, on which you can basically create a full song. The pack comes with the pickup, a mounting kit (no drilling or anything permanent), and a USB stick to connect the pickup to your computer. It comes with tons of free software, too: PreSonus – Studio One Artist TriplePlay Edition, NI KOMPLETE Elements, GuitarRig LE, Progression 2 by Notion Music, SampleTank 2 XT, and AmpliTube Custom Shop. Basically, everything that you need to get started, and some.
Check out Fishman TriplePlay on Amazon
Cheaper Alternatives To Fishman TriplePlay
- Fishman TriplePlay Connect – $249.95
#23: D’Addario Acoustic Guitar Humidifier
Prevent cracks in your acoustic and classical guitars. We all know that a dry environment is not a guitar’s best friend. Even though there are many humidifiers in the market, I feel like it’s a safer bet to buy what is essentially a water container placed inside a guitar from a brand I trust. This is the one I’m using every winter for my acoustics and classical guitars. Even though I’m adding a cheaper option later, I can’t personally vouch for it.
Check out D’Addario Guitar Humidifier on Amazon
Cheaper Alternative To D’Addario Guitar Humidifier
- Liyafy 4Pcs Guitar Humidifier ($10.99)
#24: Creative Tunings SpiderCapo Standard – The Studio Grade Capo
Change between different tunings in seconds. SpiderCapo is a reimagination of a guitar capo. You can place it anywhere you want on the neck, and control whether or not each string is pressed. An interesting way to play with it is to fret below and above the “capo”, to avoid that “pedal” feel of a note repeating itself for a long time.
Check out SpiderCapo on Amazon
#25: Pickaso Guitar Bow
Turn your guitar into a violin or cello. Pickaso guitar bow has redesigned the traditional bow to fit a guitar. It’s a thin Aluminum strip wrapped with synthetic bow hair on both sides, making it a lot easier to bow 2 strings without pulling the bow out. It’s very well built, and it looks like it is very well thought of. On the other side of it, there’s a guitar pick shaped handle, that can be used to pick the strings like a regular plectrum. The pick shaped handle is a bit of a gimmick, and it’s very hard to sustain a note with a bow this short. The hardest part for me was to move the bow between strings without making too many sounds I didn’t mean to make.
The started kit comes with the bow, a nice carrying case, rosin, and a nice letter from the owner. Important note: this gadget won’t work on electric guitars (because the bow goes inside the soundhole), coated strings, or nylon strings. And you must clean your string after every time you used the Pickaso.
Check out Pickaso on Their official site
#26: Ampoids Red Altoids/Blackface Guitar Amp
A mini-amp, with a cool design twist. This mini amp looks like a little pack of mints. It doesn’t sound as good or has as many options as either the Marshall or Orange mini amps from above, but it’s cheaper and it’s got tons of attitude. It has both gain and clean channels, and you can play with the lid open or closed for an additional “layer” of tone control. It’s a cute conversation starter, and it’s handmade – so you know your money goes to support a small business.
Check out Ampoids Red Altoids on Reverb.com
#27: D’Addario XPND Pedal Board – Guitar Pedal Board that Expands
The only pedalboard you’ll ever need. I know what you think: how is a pedalboard can be considered a guitar gadget? And you’re right. That being said, how many pedalboards you know that always fit perfectly to the number of pedals you’re using? As the name suggests, D’Addario XPND is an expandable pedalboard. There are 2 models, one for a single row of pedals and another for 2 rows. Made out of aluminum, It is both lightweight and as durable as you expect it to be.
#28: ROADIE 3 Automatic Smart Guitar Tuner
Automatic guitar tuner that works. Every time I hear the term “automatic guitar tuner” I think of Gibson’s G-Force fiasco, but this, on the other hand, is actually working. In addition to being a tuner, this little guitar gadget is also a metronome (which is something you should be using every time you practice). The way you operate it is quite simple. You attach it to the tuning peg, pluck the string, and let Roadie 3 do its thing. It works well in noisy environments because it’s a vibration-based tuner, and it comes with any alternate tuning I’ve ever heard of as a preset. You can even set your base A4 frequency to something other than 440hz (anybody said 432hz?). This is a niche product because most players don’t need an automatic tuner. But if you are in the market for one, this is the one you should look into first.
Check out ROADIE 3 on Amazon
Cheaper Alternatives To ROADIE 3:
#29: Plectone DoubleStrike
A double pick for interesting strumming effects. I consider this cool guitar pick a guitar gadget simply because it alters the way you even think about your pick. It contains 2 picks (you can choose between 0.5mm and 0.6mm) separated by a silicone cube with a block of metal inside. They say on their site that it mimics the sound of a 12-strings guitar, just without the octave – which I don’t think is true. But it doesn’t make it any less cool.
Check out Plectone DoubleStrike on their official website
#30: SoundBrenner Core Steel
Metronome, tuner, and smartwatch in one device. I was one of the original backers of this cool device. I have it for about two years now and I still use it almost every day. Even though I don’t use it as a tuner (it only works as a vibration tuner), or noise meter, or even as a smart watch, The metronome alone is worth buying it for.
This vibrating metronome delivers a strong and distinguished vibration that you can easily feel even when performing live. It syncs to the SoundBrenner app (which was my favorite metronome app even before I bought the Core Steel). The cherry on top is that it can connect to up to 4 more devices and to most DAWs, making it a real alternative to in-ear clicks in live and recording settings.
The only thing that I really don’t like about it is its leather strap. In 2 years I had to replace my strap twice, and that’s why I’d recommend you to go for the rubber strap instead. If I’d bought it today, I’d go for Core, rather than Core Steel, which is the cheaper version.
Check out SoundBrenner Core Steel on Amazon
Cheaper Alternatives To Soundbrenner Core Steel
#31: Submarine Pickup
Split your guitar signal into 2 different chains. This is essentially a half-sized pickup. It means that it can receive information from either the low or high 3 strings. This opens a lot of opportunities, such as using distortion only on half of your guitar, reverbing only the high string to avoid muddiness, etc… These are only part of the things this amazing gadget can do, but unfortunately, the build quality is not that good. After a few times I used it, I ended up needing to be very gentle with it when plugging and unplugging, and it didn’t stick anymore. It is very cool and useful though, and if you’re willing to deal with that, you will definitely love this guitar gadget.
Check out Submarine Pickup on their official website
Compiling this list took a lot of time, but it was also a huge fun. I bought a lot of guitar gadgets over the years, and going through all of them was a little like opening a cart full of toys from your childhood. Most of them didn’t make the cut, or just weren’t good enough to be included in this list. I have a few more cool guitar gadgets on their way, and if they are really as cool as I think they are, I’ll update this list very soon.
I hope you enjoyed reading it, and that you found a gadget or a cool product you didn’t know of. If you did, just remember to be responsible with the money you spend on such things, it’s easy to get lost in the moment. Remember that no guitar gadget will ever make you play better, just differently. Buying cool gear is a lot of fun, but it shouldn’t come instead of practicing.
Any cool guitar gadget I might have missed? Let me know what you think in the comments below, and I will see you next time!