The quest for the perfect pick

kludge

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Yes, this subject has been covered before.

Current status: A few months ago, I got two Blue Chips. They're nice, but not ideal for shape and thickness reasons. And what seems like the right Blue Chip to me would be $75... enough to flinch hard. One of the things I learned is that the ideal shape for me is basically a Jazz III XL - the Jazz III point and shoulders, but a little more meat. Another thing I learned is I can't have a "sided" bevel, because I rotate the angle where the pick strikes the string, depending on what I'm doing.

Next, tried some .88mm Dunlop Primetone XL. Pretty good, but too flexible, and too textured at the grip.

Next, got a Worfshop 1.5mm carbon fiber in Jazz III XL shape from Etsy. The grip is wonderful (and it looks SO cool), but there's so much texture to how it strikes the string that I only like it on maybe 1/4 of the things I play. I generally prefer a really smooth edge. This is way different... not rough, but it's more like silk when I want more like glass.

So today, I got some 1.4mm Primetone XL. They still don't feel thick enough, and they're too warm... they sound just plain dull next to the .88mm. Foiled again!

Basically, what I want is something that sounds like a Blue Chip, but in the 1.5-2mm range, in Jazz III XL shape, with no handedness to the bevel, that doesn't cost as much as a pedal. Which is apparently too much to ask.
 

saltbird

Member
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1,688
My quest for the perfect pick was just one giant circle back to home plate.

I've been around the entire block with picks, the fancy pricier ones, Blue Chips, Gravity, V-Picks, to the cheapo dime-a-dozen ones, and I always come back to trusty old Fender Mediums. They just feel and sound right to me.

I had a crazy 3-4 year long stint of being utterly frustrated with my tone. I was convinced my 1.5mm Classic Standard Gravity pick was the perfect pick for me, and they are comfortable, but no matter what I did I couldn't get rid of this modern sounding sheen on the note attack that drove me more and more crazy as time went on. I kept looking to pickups, effects, amps, strings and was at a loss until one day I thought outside the box and decided to try my old favorite pick type, Fender Mediums, and I felt like a totally different player. Easily the biggest night and day tone difference I've ever experienced and also somehow probably the cheapest. It was the longest rut I've ever been in and it was all due to using the wrong pick and not realizing it.
 

SubApathy

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I've been using Dunlop Tortex Jazz III (1.14 mm) picks for about 12 years.
 

Riffa

Member
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4,571
I have been using the Dunlop Delrin 500 2.0s for about a year now. I love them, nothing sounds quite like them IME.

The grip makes it even easier to control. The non-grip ones kind of slipped when I first started using 'fatter' picks.
 

sahhas

Silver Supporting Member
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16,095
well, my experience with picks was sort of similar to how Jeff Beck went to his fingers, i kept dropping them, and then i realized that i liked the control of the fingers more....another thing was attending a masterclass that Christopher Parkening had back in the early 90s that I happened to attend. He talked about a lot of just interesting common sense things that make playing the guitar easier, and it stuck w/ me....

The "Andy Martin" pick?
 

kludge

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you could go w/ your fingers.....they work!
I like fingers, but for different reasons. I'm looking for a crisp, even tone - the sound of a pick, and the feel of a pick. I'm just looking for a specific tone... warm, but not dull; crisp, but not clacky or zingy.
 

johnny q

Member
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1,098
I used Fender Mediums and Heavies for years - decades in fact. About 10 years ago I tried the Dunlop 2.0 MM Delrin picks and realized I prefer these - no "give" at all! I will now use nothing else.
 

Trebor Renkluaf

I was hit by a parked car, what's your excuse?
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13,563
You might look into the Gravity Gold Series. They aren't cheap, but they sound and feel great and wear forever.
 

stevenlaumer

Member
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94
Im surprised you called the Primetone's "warm". I find them to be very much the opposite - bright and articulate. They're the only one's I'll use these days.
 

kludge

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7,109

You might find it a bit brighter than a Blue Chip though.
Oh, that's interesting. I have one Gravity pick - came with a pedal - and I more or less hated it. Way too bright, and I didn't like the unpolished bevel. But I might try one of these, see if I have better luck.
 

mrpinter

Silver Supporting Member
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7,595
Oh, that's interesting. I have one Gravity pick - came with a pedal - and I more or less hated it. Way too bright, and I didn't like the unpolished bevel. But I might try one of these, see if I have better luck.
The Gold series is completely different from the acrylics. You might just like them.
 




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