Last updated: 16/10/2022

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With this accessory on your fingers it is possible to get magnificent sounds from the strings!

From a distance it looks like all guitar picks are the same. Only that one version is better suited to playing jazz, other editions work very well with the aim of getting rock sounds and so on.

Let?s know what are the main types of guitar picks? How about knowing how much to pay to buy a professional version? Where to buy the best models? Check all these details below.




Summary

  • The guitar pick is also used to play guitar and other stringed instruments.
  • The guitar pick, or guitar, is available in different models of shapes, size and composition.
  • Hard picks are good for bases. Flexible models are good for solos and for performing scales faster.

The Best Guitar Pick: Our Picks

Buying Guide

Tired of hurting your fingers to play the guitar? Then learn how to buy a pick that helps you achieve the most beautiful melodies without scratching your skin. Let’s go ahead to the Buying Guide.

Um homem usando palheta para tocar guitarra.

Find out how to choose a guitar pick that is also good for playing guitar or other instruments (Source: Ronnarong Thanuthattaphong / 123RF)

What is a guitar pick?

Guitar pick, guitar pick, reed or plectrum are terms that refer to the musical accessory. The vast majority of versions of this tool have a somewhat round and half triangular shape.

With picks for playing music you pluck the strings of guitar, viola, guitar, double bass, cavaco or mandolin. Metal, plastic, wood and glass are some of the materials used to make this product.

Uma palheta de violão da cor azul presa entre as cordas e o braço de uma guitarra.

Don’t fasten the pick on the neck of the guitar or the guitar because this can cause the strings to go out of tune or break. (Source: Didgeman / Pixabay)

What are the advantages of the guitar pick?

One thing we can not complain about: The variety of colours in the existing offers guitar pick or guitar. There is choice of tones that please from metallers to roots sambistas.

The formats are diverse, less by question of style, more by the technical points that interfere in the result of the sound regarding the touch of the strings.

You also don’t need to spend a lot of money to buy them, although the best productions are American. The imported models are more difficult to find.

Some editions are worth thousands of dollars, they are from famous guitarists who during concerts throw them to the fans in the crowd. An example is this version won by an English woman at a Metallica concert in Manchester:

Negatively we cannot deny that to play with the pick you need to have a certain skill. During the touches unintentionally the product will end up inside the guitar, being necessary to shake the instrument to all sides until the pick comes out.

See the table below for the advantages and disadvantages of reeds:

Advantages
  • Multiple colours and various shapes
  • Low prices
  • Custom models
  • Versions worth thousands of dollars
  • Different materials
  • Specific thicknesses
Disadvantages
  • Drop inside the guitar
  • A little difficult to use
  • The best productions are imported

Fingerboard or guitar pick: Which is better?

Many people wonder: Why buy a guitar pick if you can put a fingerboard on your finger to play? If you also want to learn more about the difference between them, follow the reading to know which one to choose.

Pick

It is more practical, whether for playing different instruments or for not having to fit anything on the fingers. It is also a popular product and easy to find on the market.

Several people can use only one model of pick with no problems, showing how flexible this product is. Simple to use for playing rock and subgenres, as well as reggae and other musical styles.

Another feature that explains the success of this production is the possibility of playing with high or low sounds, depending on the thickness of the reeds. Not to mention that when it comes to personalisation choices they are real highlights.

Fingerboard

Accessory that must be inserted in the thumb. This production is a success among musicians who use 7 strings guitar to play samba or choro.

There are people who use the fingerboard even in the Portuguese guitar. In general this piece is made of plastic or metal, there are not many possibilities of artistic customization.

It is of eye in the differences between pick and fingerboard:

Finger Pick
Use Fingered Held by fingers
Prices Cheaper More expensive
Practicality More Less
Difficulty of use Medium Advanced
Use in instrument 7-string guitar or Portuguese guitar 6-string guitar or other stringed instruments
Level of customization Low High
Musical style Samba, choro, Portuguese music, among others Rock, pop, jazz, blues, reggae, heavy metal, among others

How to play the guitar with a pick?

The most practical form of using the guitar pick of guitar or guitar is to hold her with the index finger and the thumb. Many people also use the finger of the middle to have stability in the use of this product, although this practice is inadvisable for professionals.

Once the pick is in your fingers you have two ways to use it. The first one is playing the strings with just the pick. In the other way you use the accessory together with your fingers in string playing. See more on the video:

How much does it cost?

With 1 you can buy a pick, depending on the version and where you buy it. Imported models can cost from 5 GBP to 10 GBP per unit.

For those who are used to playing with different reed thicknesses, it is worth buying kits with 10 or more per package. An imported set can cost from 20 GBP to 35 GBP.

Purchase criteria: Factors for comparing guitar pick offers

You play the song, but notice that the sound does not come out identical. Have you even tuned the strings several times and still no results? Then maybe you need a new guitar pick!

Here are some tips that will teach you how to select the perfect guitar pick for your musical needs:

  • Thickness
  • Material
  • Personalization
  • Format

Below check out more information on each criteria.

Thickness

The thickest guitar pick has about 1.5 mm. It generates velvety and low sound due to the ample contact with the string.

On the other hand, the less thick editions have between 0.5 and 0.7 mm on average. They make the sound brighter and sharper. For this reason these versions are commonly used with cavacas or mandolins.

6 palhetas de violão de cores diferentes.

Personal taste, performed technique or musical genre are factors that determine the choice of thickness in the reed (Source: teddytantt / Pixabay)

Material

Cellulose reeds are light, practical and popular. Nylon models generate extra comfort for musicians, although they are not very flexible. Those who play with steel strings can use the acetal product that decreases the noise of the strings and amplifiers.

Lexan versions have a better friction with the fingers and are used by metallica guitarists. Acrylic reeds do not crack because they are super resistant.

Metal models generate clean sound, although they wear out the strings quickly. Considering the wooden versions, each model is capable of generating its own unique sound, just like the glass picks.

Diversas palhetas com cores, formatos e materiais diferentes.

The material of the guitar pick influences the sound of the string. (Source: homestudio / 123RF)

Personalization

There are many possibilities for customizing a guitar pick. You can choose from models with unique colours without any branding to editions that have real artwork stamped on them.

Depending on where you buy the guitar pick, you can choose your own design on the guitar pick to match your instrument, your clothes or your shoes. You can mark your name or stamp your favorite designs on the pick.

Format

Guitar picks with a rounded tip are best for getting a full-bodied sound. In the case of the pointed tip editions, it is recommended to use them to play with speed and light attacks on the strings.

For solar purposes, it is best to use pointed reeds. For base playing, use the round guitar picks.

(Source of the highlighted image: lamography / Pixabay)

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