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Indispensable accessories


Everybody has his or her collection of favorite guitar-related accessories and tools. Here’s my list of indispensable toys.

Share yours!

Little Lehle III
I use this quality AB switch to switch my guitar between the inputs of the Axe-Fx III and FM3 when testing.

Yamaha AG06
My small “toss-in-a-bag” mixer, with USB and broadcast facilities.
When we need bring our own PA equipment, I use a Behringer X-32 Producer with P16-M personal mixers etc.

Studio Slips
Though far away from my location, I order my custom covers and bags from them, i.e. to protect my Atomic CLRs.

Song BPM
I look up BPM numbers of original songs on this site.

Shadow SH PMG-W Wireless PanaMag Acoustic Pickup/Preamp
I’ve installed this pickup system in my Gibson J-45, delivering excellent sound with handy features (wireless, tuner, tone controls).

Seymour Duncan Powerstage 170
Well-known small solid-state power amp that drives my guitar cab on stage.

Superb DI, used with my acoustic guitar and bass.

Pelican cases
Expensive but great durable build quality.

I’m a switch nerd. Small, large, momentary, latching, single, multiple etc. Lots of them from various manufacturers, like Otter Custom Design (external switches for the FM3, FC, etc., that match the hardware), Roland FS-7, RJM, T1M, Bright Onion, etc.

Oktava MK-012
Great microphone for capturing acoustic guitar and vocals.

Note frequencies
Lookup table, handy when dialing in the Pitch block.

MXR Talk Box
My favorite talk box, because it has an amplifier and speaker driver built-in.

My no.1 brand for guitar bags (single/dual), guitar straps (Betty!), floorboard and allround bags.

Mission Engineering
I prefer expression pedals with a spring, Mission makes excellent ones.

MIDI Solutions
Not as important as in the past, but if there’s a MIDI problem, MIDI Solutions can probably solve it. I’ll hold on to my Merger, Thru and Event Processor for years to come.

JHS Mini A/B
Used on my floorboard to switch between multiple guitars, so I don’t have to switch cables.

Gruv Gear V-Cart Solo (now: Krane AMG 500)
Flexible cart for heavy stuff or many things.

Gator Retro Rack
My current rack case, 3U tweed. Love the looks, love the kickstand. Hopefully the next version has better rear protection.

Connecting a microphone directly to the FM3, Axe-Fx or CLR, won’t deliver enough signal level. This device increases level with 25dB. It’s phantom powered, so you need an external phantom power source; I use the one that came with the Oktava mic.

Big Joe Lithium battery
Steve Vai uses these chargeable power supplies to avoid electrical shocks. It lasts long and has great capacity. I recently upgraded to the new one (PB-109 / Power Box Li2).

Beyer DT 880 Pro
Lots of discussions and opinions, but these are my favorites. Great sound, soft fabric, light.
2nd place: Sadie headphones by Blue, with a built-in amp.

The app on my iPad on which I depend for song notes, tempo, lyrics and song management. Flexible, great features, great support. Songs are automatically switched through MIDI.

Atomic CLRs
Well-known FRFR monitors I have two old ones, and two new Neo II ones. Used at home as studio monitors, on stage as floor monitors, and as PA speakers (with a JBL sub).

A-design ATTY
Simple attenuator. Two channels, passive, line level. Very handy to control volume in the studio or on stage, without any loss of signal quality.

TC Electronics BodyRez
Little companion for my acoustic guitar. Prevents feedback, adds compression and applies EQ, making the sound better. And very simple to use.

TC Helicon Talkbox Synth
While this pedal delivers nice synth sounds and a talk box simulation, I only use it for its Adaptive Tone feature, which improves my vocal signal (EQ, compression, pitch correction, gate, de-ess). Works really well.

Shure SM-57, SM58 microphones
Can’t go wrong with them.

Sennheiser XSW-D
Favorite wireless set. Small, long-lasting, great sound.

Rolls PM50s
Small headphone amp, for personal monitoring, clicktrack etc.

Rolls MP13 Mini-Mic Preamp
Connecting a microphone directly to the FM3, Axe-Fx or CLR, won’t deliver enough signal level. The MP13 is a small mic preamp that solves this.

Roland UM-One
Reliable USB-MIDI interface to send MIDI to my iPad running BandHelper.

Roland R-07
My current field recorder, to record rehearsals and gigs. Complete feature set, Bluetooth, very portable, great sound. Before this I used Tascam’s top-of-the-line DR-100mkiii: also great but much bulkier and vulnerable.

RJM Mastermind GT/22
Supersedes the “accessories” category, but this fantastic control center deserves mentioning. Needs at least 1700 mA, so I power it with a Truetone 1 Spot or Big Joe PS-201.

Pedaltrain Nano and Metro
Love these pedalboard sizes and bags. I also use Pedalbrain’s hi-power ultra-thin power supply, the Spark.

Makes changing strings on my Gibson with Bigsby a lot easier.

String Butler
Helps to prevent the G-string issue on Gibsons.

Fryette GP/DI
Not really an accessory, but worth mentioning. Small tube amplifier, capable of direct (silent) recording, driving a small cabinet and great sounds. Whenever I want to compare modeling to “real” tube amplification, I use this. And when I want it to get loud, I use it with the Power Station (below).

Fryette Power Station II
Power amplifier by Steve Fryette. Also operates as a reactive load, attenuator, effects loop. Priceless tool to have around.

Used to connect my monitors, Axe-Fx, FM3 and headphones. Allows me to easily select a source, mute, control volume with a large knob etc. With USB interface.

Behringer B205D
Maybe not the best audio quality, but it works fine as a compact personal monitor for vocals, mounted on the mic stand. Whenever I’m not sure of the monitoring system at the gig, I bring this one and put my vocals through it.

Hercules GS302B and GS402BB
Portable guitar stands.

G7th capo
Most reliable capo I know of.

Rain Design mStand
Beautiful stands for MacBook, iPad, and FM3.

Wensn 3130A
Very affordable wall-mounted dB meter.

Dunlop (X) Mini Pedal (DVP4)
Compact but heavy-duty expression (and volume) pedal.

Behringer CT100
Cable tester.

And of course a selection of many, many converter plugs, patch cables, power strips with USB, etc.
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Power User
Are monitors accessories? We require some sort of speaker to hear what our rigs put out, regardless of type haha. I use Mackie CR4's, which are miles away better than the small speakers I was using before.

My indispensable accessories would probably be a back-up tuner and a box full of picks. I love having my Roland EV-5 but it's not a necessity per se.

I know headphones are about to become a godsend in in short order.
Nice list, @yek - thanks!

I find these things indispensible:

Shure SM-57, 'cause it's a good reliable mic, and you can also use it to construct a crude shelter when the van breaks down.

Eventide Mixing Link: A dead handy little audio routing toolbox. I've used it to solve innumerable little issues.

My old ~1987 E-Bow. I have one of the newer model Plus E-Bows too, but it's not the same.
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Admin M@

Fractal Audio Systems
Yek, I share with you the ATTY, Mono Bag, G-7th Capo, PM50, Duncan 170, RNDI, SM57/58, UM-One, and DT-880 pros.


This thread was a good reminder to order an ABY box. Just ordered a Radial BigShot ABY. Lehle's are pretty but I can't afford all that German engineering! :D


Great list! The String Butler is new to me and looks interesting. Here’s a few more that I use and find useful:

Fender Custom Shop Toolkit
Basic tools in a nice package to set up your instrument.

String Stretcha
To stretch your strings properly when changing them.

Planet Waves cable ties
Helps you keep your cables in order.

Advanced electrical tape
I tend to wrap every cable with this if it doesn’t have a cable tie. Industry standard.
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String Stretcha
To stretch your strings properly when changing them.
That was going to be my contribution. Great, super useful tool!

Was also going to mention the Stewart MacDonald tell tremolo spring tool... But apparently they no longer sell the one I have.

And the Ibanez EJK1000 intonation tool for Edge trems... After so many years with no such option!

Also, my VAFAM front of rack panel...
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