Holiday Gear Finds 2022
Looking for more great gear for the guitar player in your life (yourself included!)? Check out this year's Holiday Gear Finds!
The new Gibson Les Paul™ Standard 50s Faded returns to the classic design that made it relevant, played, and loved -- shaping sound across generations and genres of music. It pays tribute to Gibson's Golden Era of innovation and brings authenticity back to life. The Les Paul Standard 50s features a satin nitrocellulose lacquer finish that gives it the look and feel of a long-treasured musical companion. It has a solid mahogany body with an AA figured maple top and a rounded 50s-style mahogany neck with a rosewood fingerboard and trapezoid inlays. It's equipped with an ABR-1 Tune-O-Matic bridge, an aluminum Stop Bar tailpiece, Vintage Deluxe tuners with Keystone buttons, and gold Top Hat knobs with dial pointers. The open-coil Burstbucker™ 1 (neck) and Burstbucker 2 (bridge) pickups are hand-wired to audio taper potentiometers and Orange Drop® capacitors.
The PRS SE Standard 24-08 is a mahogany-body workhorse guitar with powerful humbucking and true single-coil tones in one instrument. Its PRS TCI “S” pickups are paired with a 3-way toggle switch and two mini-toggle coil split switches that individually split the humbuckers into true single coils for a total of eight pickup configurations. Players can enjoy two full octaves thanks to the 24-fret, 25” scale length rosewood fretboard and wide thin maple neck, and the PRS patented, molded tremolo gives players added flexibility and control over their playing. With sonic range and rock-solid reliability, the PRS SE Standard 24-08 will keep you playing without compromise.
Explore new guitar voicings and open tunings with the new Kaepo™, Gruv Gear's creative tuning guitar capo! Removable fretting pads can be set to any combination for nearly unlimited possibilities. Move the Kaepo quickly up and down the fretboard like a regular capo, without any tedious clamping or setup. Adjust the 7 individual fretting pads without any tools. Kaepo is also compatible with Gruv Gear's new Twistune™ rechargeable color tuner, for quick and convenient tuning on-the-fly. Works with most 6- and 7-string acoustic and electric guitars.
The Gruv Gear Kaepo is available on its own or bundled with the new Twistune tuner. Combine two or more Kaepos to open up even more tuning creativity!
The FlyBy Ultra comes packed with sleek upgrades while keeping the break-away laptop bag design of the original FlyBy. New features include an ultra-tough 1680D Ballistic Nylon exterior, reflective trim for visibility, waterproof zipper tape and new, larger compartments. The FlyBy Ultra also brings ergonomics to the next level with a luggage pass-through, and upgraded straps.
This is the tour pack that DJs and digital creators around the world carry and swear by. Get ready for the ultimate creator experience.
JBL 3 Series MKII powered studio monitors make JBL performance available to every studio. The JBL Image Control Waveguide and refined transducers offer stunning detail, precise imaging, a wide sweet-spot and dynamic range that enhances the capabilities of any workspace. Featuring patented technologies derived from the JBL 7 Series and M2 Master Reference Monitors and, sporting a sleek, modern design, JBL 3 Series delivers outstanding performance and an enjoyable mix experience at an accessible price. Special sale pricing begins Thanksgiving day with the 305PMKII at $109 EA, 306PMKII at $149 EA, 308PMKII at $199 EA, and the LSR310S subwoofer at $299.
Oh no! Stripped a tiny screw on your favorite guitar? Or even worse, scratched your guitar when the wrong screwdriver slipped? Never have that awful feeling again. StewMac has put together the ULTIMATE screwdriver set for every guitar owner. They tracked down all of those tiny specialty and hard to find bits—and we added a few of their favorite problem solvers. The StewMac Guitar Tech Screwdriver Set replaces a whole drawer full of bulky tools with exactly what you need. The set includes 36 essential bits for guitars, basses, and more, plus an easy-grip handle and extender. The included compact hard case is spill-proof and easily fits in your toolbox or guitar case (it’s a must-have for gigs). You won't find this at any hardware store—it’s only at StewMac.
Xvive’s U2, U3 and U4 wireless systems make going wireless easy, reliable and affordable, all with high-fidelity 24-bit/48kHz sound! They all recharge with any 5V USB power source, broadcast over a range of up to 90 feet, and have an imperceptible 5 ms of latency.
U2 Guitar Wireless System is the go-to plug-and-play solution for guitarists and bassists, giving you five hours of trouble-free wireless freedom on a single charge.
The U3 Microphone Wireless System turns any dynamic microphone into a wireless mic, in seconds. It can also be used to replace an XLR cable in other applications—for example between a mixer and a powered speaker cabinet!
The U4 In-Ear Monitor Wireless System gives you a beltpack receiver for your in-ears or earphones and a transmitter to connect to the mixer; up to six musicians can use the system at a time, even with separate monitor mixes.
For more info on these and other Xvive products, visit www.xvive.com and Play Free!
Engineered for great tone and long life, our proprietary, featherweight coating keeps strings sounding and feeling new for longer. Tone-killing elements like corrosion, dirt, oil, and sweat are no match for Elixir® Strings.
Our Phosphor Bronze with NANOWEB® Coating is rich and full-bodied with sparkling high-end clarity and a smooth feel.
See a line up of all of our acoustic guitar strings here - https://www.elixirstrings.com/guitar-strings#acoustic
Revolutionary Design and Features:
Optimize your pedalboard layout with durable, snug fitting, strong and lightweight risers. Tailor your pedalboard to fit your stompbox collection and your style of playing!
Space Saving, Easy Wire Routing:
Our riser footprint is virtually the same as the pedal for which it was designed. Whether it's Boss, Wampler, Strymon, MXR, Ibanez, Electro Harmonix, Walrus, Earthquaker Devices, TC Electronic, JHS or any of the popular pedals, our risers take up no more space than the pedal itself. An added benefit of the Elephant Foot design is the ease with which you can route signal and power cables. There's plenty of space under each riser and multiple attachment points for tie-wraps.
Unique Features of Elephant Foot Risers
• Strong yet lightweight
• Cables route easily underneath
• Anchor point for tie wraps
• Hidden screw holes for a super-strong connection to either wood or metal pedalboards
• Works with hook & loop, cloth cable ties or tie wraps
• Unique Pedal "Frames" for your first row of pedals
• Risers can be customized
• 3D printed from eco-friendly PLA
Available in seven standard colors and custom colors available on request.
Benefits of Elephant Foot Risers
• No more accidental pedal stomps
• No annoying pedal wobble when stomping
• No more sloppy pedalboards
• Optimized Pedalboard layouts
• Easy, neat cable routing
• Custom riser sizes available in multiple colors
• Preserve resale value of pedals
D'Addario XPND Pedalboard
XPND is the pedalboard that adapts to you. With XPND's patented telescoping technology, you can easily adjust the length of the board to add, subtract, and rearrange pedals how you want, when you want.
The original Cloudlifter® Mic Activator® adds tons of ultra-clean gain to dynamic and ribbon microphones and are the perfect stocking-friendly gift for any musician (or yourself)! Made in the USA. Get Lifted. Get Gifted!
The Horus-WB-FX is the latest model to be developed within the popular Caparison Horus range.
This newly designed fixed bridge version features a carefully considered body construction featuring a Walnut top and an Australian Blackwood back. This unique fusion produces a full rounded tone with a sweet emphasis on the upper mids ensuring clarity, focus and a distinct separation of notes, even with the most extreme gain-saturated down tunings.
When combined with an upgraded Caparison designed, sustain rich, high mass bridge (which effortlessly copes with a myriad of acute tunings and string gauges) Jescar jumbo stainless steel Frets and a specifically designed set of Caparison pickups, the Horus-WB-FX is more than capable of producing arena filling rock tones or creating more subdued, distinctively rich and bell like cleans.
The Horus-WB-FX plays like an absolute dream and features all of the beautiful aesthetic qualities that you have come to expect from Caparison Guitars. The striking body design is complimented by three stunning new finishes and also comes with a choice of either an Ebony or Maple fret board..
The Woman Tone is Aclam’s tribute to Eric Clapton’s amazing sound during his Cream era. The sound that turned him into a god. An accurate approach to the unique tone he attained with a simple yet effective combination of a P.A.F equipped Gibson and 100W Marshall stacks all the way up.
- Eric Clapton's Cream Sound in a box:
Aclam has distilled and bottled in a stompbox the key elements that shaped Eric’s rig. Reproduce his unique rhythmic and solo tones, fine-tuned using both live and studio recordings of Cream.
- Artwork by The Fool's Guitar artist: Marijke koger:
Responsible for the psychedelic decoration of Clapton’s Gibson SG nicknamed “The Fool”, Marijke has created a unique artistic interpretation of the Woman Tone that looks stunning!
- Custom humbucker pickup simulation circuit & tone control:
A pickup simulation circuit emulating the tonal characteristics of a P.A.F style pickup has been incorporated to reproduce the “Woman Tone”. With its buffered input, the guitar signal won’t be affected. Use compressors, fuzzes or whatever effect you want in front of the Woman Tone, and it will retain its tonal characteristics.
- Touch sensitive plexi-inspired overdrive using discrete components:
Inspired by Clapton’s 100W full stacks it results in a powerful overdrive with a great British character! Designed having blues-rock in mind, it will perfectly suit any guitar player seeking a vintage tone!
A hot new gear company from Canada, Templo Devices jumped on the scene with their flagship lithium-battery powered amp aimed at electric guitarists.
Focused on creating problem-solving products with tonal excellence, they've since released several small-batch pedals with wide appeal. Including SPLYCE, a versatile mini-mixer for using a microphone with a guitar rig, the atmospheric TRIPLO modulation pedal and the REEL DEAL tape preamp, as well as their exciting upcoming release, the Pocket Studio Compressor. There is always something exciting coming from this northern innovator.
With plenty of great deals for the holiday season, they have a little something for everyone.
Meet the Taylor GS Mini, one of the world's most popular acoustic guitars: a smaller body and a compact feel with a big, bold tone that punches far above its size. Based on a scaled-down version of our Grand Symphony body shape, GS Mini guitars boast solid tops and a variety of tonewood options serving up different flavors of vibrant acoustic tone. The GS Mini family is also home to the GS Mini Bass, a super-compact four-string acoustic bass with a slinky feel and a punchy response. Whether you're looking for a campfire guitar, a songwriting tool or just a great-sounding acoustic that's up for anything, the GS Mini has you covered.
DR-05X Stereo Handheld Recorder
The TASCAM DR-05X stereo handheld recorder is a great-sounding portable recording solution with helpful workflow options. Use the TASCAM DR-05X's built-in omnidirectional condenser microphones to capture vibrant stereo recordings anywhere, anytime. Use Auto Recording mode to automatically engage recording when audio signals reach a certain level. Use the Overwrite function to make easy punch-in audio replacements. Or use the TASCAM DR-05X as a 2-input/2-output USB audio interface with your Mac or PC. Whatever your portable 2-channel recording needs are, the TASCAM DR-05X has you covered. It's a fantastic and easy way to record your ideas, rehearsals, or gigs. Simply remove the SD card and pop it into your computer and send your song ideas to bandmates or collaborators. It's small enough to take with you everywhere and fits easily in a guitar case or small bag.
The cardioid MD 421 has been one of Sennheiser’s most popular dynamic microphones for decades. The large-diaphragm, dynamic capsule handles high sound pressure levels, making it a natural for recording guitars and drums. The MD 421's full-bodied cardioid pattern and five-position bass control make it an excellent choice for most instruments, as well as group vocals or radio broadcast announcers. One listen and you'll know why it’s a classic.
Every once in a while, a product comes out that makes you go “Wait… WHAT?!?!”. Well, those words are music to our ears! This game-changing pedalboard allows you to power all your pedals, including pedals that need isolation and different voltages, with a single power source. Yep, either our rechargeable battery or AC adapter fires up all your pedals without additional power bricks. No more Velcro carpet to rip pedals off! You can literally change pedals on the fly. But the flexibility of EARTHBOARD doesn’t end there – Our Lifeline Tether carries power off the board to connect a WAH, or daisy-chain multiple EARTHBOARDs together. EARTHBOARD comes in 2 sizes: double row (holds 12 standard size pedals) and single row (holds 6 standard size pedals). They are available as Complete Pedalboard Systems (includes all necessary components to play) or as a Build-a-Board and "ala cart" accessories!
See video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S3iwDgLnN6w&t=8s
The Nobels ODR-1(bc) has bass cut, 9-18 volt input, and glow-in-the-dark knobs. The ODR-1 is rated the best overdrive by Nashville studio guitarists and creates a natural, tube-amp style overdrive that is versatile, amp-like, and affordable. The ODR-1 has been on the market for over 30 years and remains the number one choice. Creates crunchy rock and blues sounds or extra boost for soloing without smothering the natural character of your guitar's tone. The Spectrum controls optimizes tones from single coil chime to powerful humbucker rock. When adjusting the Spectrum control up or down the circuit ensures you have plenty of clarity and full dynamic range.
Bass cut switch
Solid metal chassis
Nobel's remote control jack switching system
German Engineering. Made in China.
Click here for Audio Clips
Modeled after Orangewood’s full-size Oliver guitar, the Oliver Jr. is a scaled-down version of Orangewood’s best-selling grand concert model. But don’t let the small body fool you. Sporting a beautiful, woodsy solid mahogany top, this junior guitar sings a bold and bright tone that’s easy to love. Whether you’re looking for your new travel companion or simply want a compact guitar to live near your couch, you can’t go wrong with this perfect-sized guitar.
Prefer a full-size model? This holiday season, every Orangewood guitar includes a professional set up and free shipping right to your door with a premium gig bag included. Plus, get extended holiday returns until January 31st. That’s over 60 days of commitment-free playing, so you can gift a guitar that they’re sure to love.
Jump straight in and explore 100 presets, the CODE50 has all you need to start performing and recording with. 50W of power that’s portable enough for you to practice at home or in the garage. Sync with your phone or online so it’s always with you for those creative moments. This fully digital amp is loaded with 14 MST preamps, 4 MST power amps and 8 MST speaker cabinets for you to create sounds that suit you. Using the Gateway App you can connect via Bluetooth to control CODE and stream music from your iOS or Android device. MyMarshall has a global library of user presets that you can upload to and download.
Catalyst® 100 is a 100-watt, dual-channel 1x12 combo amplifier that performs like a traditional guitar amp—while providing the increased versatility of a modern amp. Catalyst 100 offers six Original Amp Designs—ranging from pristine clean to modern high-gain—crafted using our renowned HX® sound design techniques to ensure exceptional tone and feel. Ideal for stage or studio.
• 100-watt, dual-channel 1x12 combo amp (with optional LFS2 footswitch)
• Catalyst 100 operates like a traditional amp—but provides increased versatility
• 6 Original Amp Designs—pristine clean to modern high-gain
• Dedicated Boost and Reverb sections (6 reverb types), 18 Effects (3 types)
• Power attenuator (half power, 0.5 watts, Mute) for reduced volume
• XLR line output for pro connection to P.A. or recording devices
• Effects loop and Power Amp input for integrating external devices
• MIDI In via DIN connector
Every Tool You Need in One Acoustic Pedal
We created the Venue DI so you can travel light, set up fast, and sound incredible anywhere you plug in. The Venue DI gives you complete control by combining a full-isolation DI output, 5-band EQ with adjustable low & hi-mid bands, variable clean boost, and chromatic tuner all in one acoustic pedal. With its all-discrete signal path, hi-graded semiconductors, and exclusive use of audiophile grade film capacitors, the Venue DI is on par with the world’s elite preamps and provides a studio quality sound for the stage.
The LP-6 V2 is Kali's best-selling studio monitor, and it's made its mark in studios across the globe ranging from humble home setups to state-of-the-art recording facilities.
Kali's innovative 3-D imaging waveguides create a crystal-clear stereo image, and also help the speakers to perform their best in challenging acoustic spaces. Kali-programmed boundary EQs take this a step further, tailoring the sound of the speaker for its placement on stands, on a desk, or close to walls.
With accuracy and translation at the forefront, the LP-6 delivers transparent, full sound that gives you a complete picture of your mix. Whatever you mix on the LP-6, you can be sure that it will translate nicely to other speakers, earbuds and headphones, car systems, or whatever else your listeners are using for playback.
The H90 Harmonizer® is Eventide's next-generation multi-effects pedal. Whether you want high-quality bread and butter effects or experimental sounds unheard, the H90 has everything you need to inspire your creativity with an intuitive UI designed with players in mind. Discover why top artists and producers have chosen Eventide through the years with 62 effect algorithms and hundreds of Program combinations curated for a variety of instruments and genres. With its comprehensive I/O and flexible routing options, the H90 is designed to be the heart of your rig.
Wilkinson's R series range of pickups are the result of Trev Wilkinson's years of creating and listening to thousands of pickups. Time spent with legendary and iconic individuals such as Seth Lover and Leo Fender, with whom Trev questioned about all aspects of sound, construction materials and production methods. All this combined knowledge has been the template for the R Series range of pickups, a pickup range Trev is proud to place his signature on, and say " These are the finest pickups Wilkinson has produced in the history of the company".
Featuring Single Coil's for both S and T style guitars, P90 and Humbucker models, the R Series has era specific models to capture the tone and vibe of the time and the players that influenced generations of players and Hybrid designs to influence future players.
For a limited time only, get two FREE expansion packs with the purchase of a five-piece guitar rack. Showcase your collection while safely and securely storing seven to ten guitars. The Hercules GS525BP-HA205 is covered with Specially Formulated Foam rubber at all contact points and features a one-piece design that sets up and tears down easily. The guitar yoke is designed for acoustic, electric, and bass guitars with four pick slots on each yoke. This special pack comes with a total of seven guitar yokes leaving room to expand to ten. Available while supplies last.
Ultimate DSP 2 channel noise reduction pedal. Patented technology that will remove the 50Hz or 60Hz and all associated hum harmonic components with total transparency. Combined with the patented Decimator G technology and dynamic sliding low pass filter, the Hum Extractor is the pinnacle of noise reduction technology. The Hum Extractor technology is dynamic in operation which compares the level of the audio signal to the hum harmonic components. Dynamically removes hum components when they become dominant. Made in the USA.
Click here for video
With the multi-touch display integrated with HILAVA OS, the LAVA ME 3 provides easy access to play and customize tons of built-in effects and loops.
Comprising eleven of Brian Wampler’s favorite delays, the Wampler Metaverse is a full-featured, small-footprint multi delay stomp box that is fully programmable, preset capable, has stereo inputs and outputs, allows full MIDI control, and has an expression input that you can assign to ANY of the parameters. The Metaverse also comes with a software version of the pedal via a set of 11 AU and VST3 plugins compatible with most popular DAWs - FREE to all customers that register their Metaverse online.
• Studio quality conversion 48 kHz Sampling rate with 24-bit audio
• Full 20Hz to 20kHz frequency response
• 11 Studio-quality vintage and modern delay effects
• Simple user interface
• All parameters controllable via an outboard expression pedal
• 8 onboard preset locations to save your favorite patches, 128 total via MIDI
• Full MIDI control with CC and PC commands
• Stereo or Mono I/O
Gator's Transit Series acoustic gig bags provide rugged case-like protection without sacrificing the lightweight portability of a bag. The red soft-lined interior and thick foam padding safeguard your guitar from drops and bumps, just like a regular case. A weather-resistant blended fabric exterior protects against the elements and features backpack straps, each with a concealable zipper pocket to switch between backpacking and briefcase carry modes. So for the gear you love the most, Guard it with Gator.
Experience exceptional clarity and articulation in a Filter’Tron format with Lindy’s unique Fralin’Tron design. Featuring a focused single-coil vibe with a rich, warm midrange and crisp attack, you’ll wonder where this pickup has been all your life. When Lindy started designing the Fralin’Tron, he did so with a particular goal: to get as much clarity and articulation as possible out of this design.We’re thrilled with the result! Our Fralin’Tron features a scooped midrange and defined bass and highs. In addition, you can expect more nuance out of the wound strings, unlike the original design. Furthermore, the treble strings have a round, warm quality, making our Fralin’Tron perfect for all styles of music – from clean to dirty. Lastly, this pickup features a dynamic and punchy attack that gives you back what you put into it.
The DL-225 is handcrafted exclusively from all mahogany, producing a warm and brilliant sound. The soundboard of the DL-225 features a vintage bracing pattern resulting in outstanding projection and tone with brilliant highs, strong midrange and subtle but full bass. The DL-225 has an extremely bright and dynamic sound. This guitar has the sound of a large body guitar. In a fingerpicking demonstration comparison we did with a name brand dreadnought the DL-225 was +3 dB louder.
Its smaller size and depth make the DL-225 a very comfortable guitar to play.
Click here for video and audio examples
Wampler Pedals Ratsbane
If you are looking for a single pedal solution with multiple degrees of gain from light overdrive to full out saturated fuzz tones, then you’ll surely love the Ratsbane. The Ratsbane is based on a true benchmark sound amongst guitarists that has been heard on thousands of famous recordings.
In typical Wampler fashion, Brian improved the circuit’s flexibility by adding two new switches. The Gain switch offers three distinct choices. In the middle gives you the “stock” gain for this pedal. The left position offers a firm, yet smooth boost in gain, whereas the right delivers an insane level of creamy distortion. The Voice switch subtly alters the compression and clipping of this pedal. It tightens the distortion to be more manageable with greater levels of gain, while rolling back some of the fuzz qualities, to deliver a modern, high gain distortion.
Click here for video clips
Each limited-edition pedal features a bold metallic finish, a silver battery-compartment thumb screw, gold-capped knobs, and a commemorative 50th-anniversary emblem.
First established in 1973 as MEG Electronics—an R&D division within its parent company Roland—the company was introduced to the public with the now-famous Boss name and logo the following year. The special “BOSS at 50” microsite spotlights five decades of innovation with an interactive timeline of milestone products that have established industry trends and opened new creative possibilities for musicians everywhere. The microsite also showcases significant moments in music history and honors the artists who have used Boss products to shape the sound of music over the last 50 years.
Presented in exclusive packaging and marked with unique four-digit serial numbers, these pedals deliver the same sound and circuitry that have made the standard versions so beloved by generations of players in every musical genre. These collectible versions have been produced in strictly limited numbers, with only 7,000 units available worldwide.
After the Boss compact pedal series debuted with its first three models in 1977, the DS-1 Distortion was introduced the following year to wide acclaim. Prized for its edgy attack and smooth sustain, this multi-million seller has remained in the lineup ever since and can be heard on countless hit records. $82.99 USD.
SD-1 Super Overdrive
Boss released the SD-1 Super Overdrive in 1981, improving on the groundbreaking OD-1 model by introducing a tone control and other subtle circuit enhancements. This workhorse gain machine has stood the test of time and continues to grace the pedalboards of beginners and pros alike. $82.99 USD.
BD-2 Blues Driver
For guitarists seeking delicate, nuanced gain tones that allow their feel and technique to shine through, it’s hard to beat the BD-2 Blues Driver. Introduced in 1995, this acclaimed drive pedal is revered for its broad sound palette, touch sensitivity, and articulate tube-like response.
For more information, please visit boss.info.
A hot-rodded Melody Maker, a pair of Deluxe Reverbs, and a custom-built ’board power this funk funhouse.
Ryan Lerman is the cofounder of Los Angeles-based dynamic funk project Scary Pockets. The musical collective has been crushing it on Youtube since 2017, and eventually they decided to take their show on the road—a shift that’s turned them into a celebrated and successful touring act. Lerman met up with PG’s John Bohlinger before Scary Pockets’ Nashville show at the Brooklyn Bowl to talk through his current touring rig.
Brought to you by D'Addario XPND.
In the Lap of De-luxury
On this leg of the tour, Lerman is rolling with backline amps—generally two Fender ’68 Custom Deluxe Reverbs.
Funk on the Floor
For his stompbox kingdom, Lerman tapped Dave Phillips at L.A. Sound Design to build him a road-ready board. First up, Lerman runs a 1/4" cable from his guitar right into a 29 Pedals Euna. From there, the signal runs the gauntlet through: an Electro-Harmonix Superego, WMD Geiger Counter, Rainger FX Reverb-X, Ross Compressor, Klon Centaur, JHS SuperBolt, JAM Pedals WaterFall, Non-Human Audio Slow Loris, Eventide H9, Strymon Flint, Empress Superdelay, Sonic Research Turbo Tuner ST-300, Fairfield Circuitry Shallow Water, Mooer Slow Engine, Surfy Industries SurfyVibe, and a Lehle volume pedal.
Shop Ryan Lerman's Rig
Breedlove’s new USA-made travel-sized companion guitar is taking center stage.
Small-bodied acoustic guitars inhabit a unique place in the world of 6-strings. For some, they are the secret weapon that gives their music a unique character. Unfortunately, other guitarists consider them starter guitars, toys, or a compromised design that is only good for travel. We firmly belong to the former category, believing these guitars can be as fine as any other acoustic-guitar body shape. Their usefulness as travel acoustics and beginner guitars is just one more reason to love them.
Lately, we’re happy to have seen a shift in guitarists' perspectives on these acoustics. It's not uncommon to see major artists toting their favorite small-bodied guitars on massive stages around the world. They don’t need a small guitar for convenience’s sake. They love the tone, which, due to their typically brighter sound, can sit exceptional well in live or studio mixes.
With that in mind, we wanted to take a deeper look at small-bodied acoustic guitars’ history, present, and future. We’ll discuss where they came from, who they’re suitable for, and why now is the perfect time for Breedlove to release high-end, small-bodied USA-made masterpieces, like the Premier Companion E Red Cedar-Brazilian LTD, alongside a collection of Custom Shop stunners.
The Small-Bodied Acoustic Guitar: A Quick History
There are a handful of genuinely iconic acoustic guitar body shapes, each famous for a different reason. The dreadnought offers an outstanding balance of power, low end, and clarity. Orchestra models are incredibly versatile. And it’s hard to beat a jumbo for rhythmic punch.
Those shapes deserve all the recognition they enjoy. But smaller shapes shouldn’t fall under the radar. Robert Johnson’s L-1 launched much of the blues—and therefore, much of modern, popular music—into mainstream culture. Singer-songwriting icon Joan Baez has her own signature Martin 0-45. Nick Drake even put his Guild M-20 on the cover of his 1971 album, Bryter Layter. But it’s still a niche instrument. And you can’t mention small-bodied acoustic guitars without discussing the parlor shape.
The Parlor Acoustic Guitar
The parlor is the quintessential small-bodied acoustic guitar shape. Its compact dimensions and elongated lines are more closely related to the first steel-string acoustic guitars than any other popular shape today. Like many modern, smaller guitars, it got its good looks by putting convenience first, gaining its notoriety as the centerpiece of at-home family entertainment. Before TVs, smartphones, video games, and streaming, families would gather in their parlors (hence the name) while Mom or Dad played and sang for the family.
The guitar’s diminutive size made it perfect for storing out of the way until needed. These original parlors were quality musical instruments with a beautiful voice. That voice and the parlor’s convenient size continue to inspire all the small-bodied acoustic guitars made today.
The Benefits of Small-Bodied Acoustic Guitars
We’ll get into the tone of small-bodied guitars in a bit, especially when we discuss our latest addition to the design. Still, we need to consider the pragmatic benefits of owning one of these acoustics.
Travel Acoustic Guitars
One of the parlor acoustic’s key features was its ability to stay out of the way. That quality is more important than ever these days. Whether cramming in a band van, camping/overlanding, or fighting for overhead storage on a flight, a great, small travel guitar is worth its weight in gold. It’s a big reason we designed our Companion models. They’re easy to carry, small enough to store, and are still premium acoustic guitars that we’re proud to put our name on.
Ideal for Guitarists with Smaller Hands
Diversity is one of the most beautiful things about humans. This, of course, also goes for guitarists and means that different guitarists have different preferences for the guitars they play. Many beginning players, children, and anyone who finds full-size acoustics cumbersome flock to small-bodied acoustic guitars. Designs like our Concertina are ideal for these players as they offer a full-scale length while being easier to play, more comfortable against your body, and feature an accessible, inviting neck profile.
The Tone of Small-Bodied Acoustic Guitars
The above benefits are fantastic reasons to choose a smaller guitar. However, the size can still bring a stigma that these guitars are cheap, beginner guitars that always require tonal compromise. It simply isn’t true, and, increasingly, guitarists embrace the small-bodied design these days strictly for tonal purposes.
Excellent small-bodied acoustics, like parlors, the famed L-1, and our Concertina and Companion models, sing with a deep, rich tone, crystalline highs, and a signature midrange that’s positively addicting. It is perfect for the rootsy tones of Robert Johnson’s delta blues, and it sits beautifully in a full band mix while offering the folksy character many singer-songwriters crave.
Premier Companion E Red Cedar-Brazilian LTD
We want the world to know more about these beautiful, compact instruments and to demonstrate how inspiring they can be. The new Breedlove Premier Companion E Red Cedar-Brazilian LTD is our realization of that goal. Crafted from the finest materials, we spared no expense in offering guitarists a small-bodied acoustic guitar with impeccable quality only matched by its aesthetic and sonic elegance.
The first thing you’ll notice about the guitar is its beautiful, all-solid Brazilian rosewood back and sides. This exceedingly rare tonewood is famous for its sustain, bell-like response, powerful low end, and string-to-string definition. Though rarely seen on modern, smaller guitars, it is a crucial element that makes this Companion pure magic. We top the Brazilian rosewood with a solid red cedar soundboard to add crisp note articulation and a warm balance. Leaning on our proprietary Sound Optimization process, every piece of the tonewood is hand-shaped, tweaked, and analyzed multiple times through the build process to ensure precise frequency response and perfect tone. If there are still guitarists who overlook small-bodied acoustic guitars, the Premier Companion E Red Cedar-Brazilian LTD will change their minds.
Oregon Companion CE Myrtlewood-Myrtlewood
Myrtlewood, while native to Oregon’s Pacific coast, might just be the most “exotic” of all tonewoods, capturing the deep bass of rosewood, the pure warmth of mahogany and the sweet, glassy treble of maple in one exquisite, visually enchanting package enhanced by a gloss finish. This sustainable acoustic-electric is much more than just a travel guitar.
“Anyone could make a travel-size guitar,” said Breedlove Wood Management & Product Development Manager Angela Christensen. “Our goal was to give the Companion an even more captivating voice while maintaining its size, shape, and overall feel. We also wanted it to handle any playing style you throw at it.”
Oregon Companion Stormy Night CE Myrtlewood-Myrtlewood
The Oregon Companion Stormy Night CE is a stunning acoustic guitar that will accompany you throughout your musical journey. Crafted in Bend, Oregon, this guitar does our hometown proud, boasting a solid top, back, and sides of beautiful Myrtlewood. The Companion’s smaller body makes it perfect when you’re on the go and still offers surprising warmth and low-end power.
It comes with L.R. Baggs electronics, taking its full-size tone to the stage. The Oregon Companion Stormy Night CE also features our Stormy Night finish, giving this guitar a deep, enchanting aesthetic that needs to be experienced in person.
The Big Picture on Small-Bodied Guitars
Small-bodied acoustics have been a guitar design mainstay since the beginning. Often relegated to cheap but convenient alternatives, we don’t think they’ve received the respect they deserve. The design can exude stunning sonic character that larger designs can’t match. Our Premier Companion E Red Cedar-Brazilian LTD proves that.
Whether you’re looking for a fantastic travel/beginner guitar or yearn for premium tone in a compact package, we highly recommend you check out the Premier Companion E Red Cedar-Brazilian LTD or one of our other Companion or Concertina models. They’re all premium instruments that showcase Breedlove’s commitment to quality and tone.