An organized and streamlined pedalboard equals a focused and happy player.

If you find yourself doing too much pedal dancing, own pedals that need the benefit of true bypass, or have a tangled web of cables that require some attention, a pedal looping system might be your next must-have piece of gear to tackle these issues and more.

GIG RIG

G2
Featuring 10 true-bypass effects loops, 120 presets, programmable pre and post gain, optical footswitches, and more, this system was designed for transparent audio and ease of use.
$1,099 street
thegigrig.com

BOSS

MS-3
This hybrid unit has 112 built-in effects types for guitar and bass, audio loops to integrate three external pedals, a built-in tuner, noise suppressor, and EQ.
$399 street
boss.info

ONE CONTROL

Caiman Tail Loop
This compact, 5-loop switcher offers MIDI compatibility and fast access to up to 150 preset effect combinations through six lanes and five programmable banks.
$369 street
one-control.com

MOOER

PCL6
Boasting six presets in each bank for quick access to 36 preset pedal combinations, this true-bypass, 6-channel loop controller also has individual backlit displays for each loop.
$188 street
mooeraudio.com

CARL MARTIN

Octa-Switch MK3
Able to accommodate up to eight effects pedals, this unit features programmable DIP-switch panels and a highly visible LED indicator for each loop.
$427 street
carlmartin.com

VOODOO LAB

PX-8 Plus
This handmade, true-bypass system is equipped with eight audio loops—each with a silent-operation footswitch—and features 36 user-definable presets.
$349 street
voodoolab.com

RADIAL

BigShot EFX
Compact with bright LED indicators, this switcher houses two individual effects loops wired in series, and represents an efficient way to take a pedal or series of pedals out of a signal chain.
$99 street
radialeng.com

WALRUS AUDIO

Transit 5
This unit features a clickless switching system to silently manage the five available channels of effects loops, all while providing pedals the benefit of true bypass.
$205 street
walrusaudio.com

MUSICOM LAB

EFX MK-V
Boasting a whopping 361 memory locations, this loaded unit houses seven mono loops, two stereo loops, and one volume loop, along with two internal unity mixers and three buffers.
$749 street
musicomlab.com

DC PEDALS

Bluetooth Looper
This 5-channel system has 100 direct accessible presets and 100 MIDI accessible presets, which can be programmed, saved, and accessed via the company’s VirtualLooper app.
$299 street
dcpedals.com

It’s not difficult to replace the wiring in your pickups, but it takes some finesse. Here’s a step-by-step guide.

Hello and welcome back to Mod Garage. After numerous requests, this month we’ll have a closer look at changing wires on a single-coil pickup. As our guinea pig for this, I chose a standard Stratocaster single-coil, but it’s basically the same on all single-coil pickups and easy to transfer. It’s not complicated but it is a delicate task to not destroy your pickup during this process, and there are some things you should keep in mind.

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The emotional wallop of the acoustic guitar sometimes flies under the radar. Even if you mostly play electric, here are some things to consider about unplugging.

I have a love-hate relationship with acoustic guitars. My infatuation with the 6-string really blasted off with the Ventures. That’s the sound I wanted, and the way to get it was powered by electricity. Before I’d even held a guitar, I knew I wanted a Mosrite, which I was sure was made of fiberglass like the surfboards the Beach Boys, Surfaris, and the Challengers rode in their off time. Bristling with space-age switchgear and chrome-plated hardware, those solidbody hotrod guitars were the fighter jets of my musical dreams. I didn’t even know what those old-timey round-hole guitars were called. As the singing cowboys Roy Rogers and Gene Autrey strummed off into the sunset, the pace of technology pushed the look and sound of the electric guitar (and bass) into the limelight and into my heart. Imagine my disappointment when I had to begin my guitar tutelage on a rented Gibson “student” acoustic. At least it sort of looked like the ones the Beatles occasionally played. Even so, I couldn’t wait to trade it in.

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Need an affordable distortion pedal? Look no further.

We live in the golden age of boutique pedals that are loaded with advanced features—many of which were nearly unthinkable a decade or so ago. But there’s something that will always be valuable about a rock-solid dirt box that won’t break your wallet. Here’s a collection of old classics and newly designed stomps that cost less than an average concert ticket.

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