Picks with Pluck: 11 Guitar Picks That Dare to Be Different



+ Add a Comment


I started with Dunlops but now use V-Picks for strumming.

For fingerpicking check out these "Butterfly" finger picks (www.ButterflyFingerPicks.com). Great sound and your finger tips don't wear out.



I love all the Broussard picks, used to use V-Picks until I tried Broussard. http://www.brossardpicks.com/



I use all kinds but mostly the Yellow Tortex and the shiny pink one. The yellow one has a dull finish. I have gray and black Dunlop nylons that work well for acoustic. I will try the twisted one since I cant bend my wrist like Friedman.



No Pykmax?

Check out my review at Amazon - search Pykmax, then scroll down to the reviews. I have a story there and it's easier to navigate there than make me retype it. Ah, what the hell, I'll copy and paste:

I am a disabled Army veteran from a long time ago. I was diagnosed with a brain tumor and subsequent resection left me with a myriad of disabilities from only 1/2 of one eye that works to moderate ataxia. I recently decided to take up the guitar as a combination of relaxation, enjoyment, and some rehabilitation for aging impairments. At first when playing riffs I didn't see any problems. In trying to play rhythm parts that ataxia showed itself. The pick constantly rotated in my grip and within seconds of playing chords I would manage to throw the pick. I tried contoured picks, smooth picks, thinner picks, grooved picks, Large picks, small picks, everything but Gorilla snot. I thought the Brain picks solved the problem but they really only delayed the eventual pick-launching that I now became used to.

I came across the Pykmax during one of my searches to find something that may help solve the pick-launching. This little gem is it! Granted, I have only had it since Friday but in all of my practice sessions (during the weekends I get told to quit playing so much) I have yet to throw a pick or even have it slip out of my hand. I can now concentrate on learning to play not hoping I don't throw the pick! With other picks, I would try to grip the pick tight but the tighter I grip the pick the harder I hit the strings until they eventually break This Pykmax alleviated any strain due to gripping the pick tightly. Just a little firm pressure is all that is needed. Any fatigue that I had is gone so I won't be developing carpal tunnel of the right wrist. And the strings don't suffer so much.

During my lesson last week, my teacher instructed me about the angle to hit the strings (Angle of attack? Now I sound like a fighter pilot!) Since the instruction was fresh in my mind, I noticed that the Pykmax gives me the necessary angle. I was told this would increase the speed to play some of the songs and he was right. I would think about the angle with the old pick, but the Pykmax creates that angle so I really am free to try and remember chords, notes, timing, and picking!

Also, this device is not a cheap 35 cent piece of plastic, but a sturdy plastic body that is curved in all of the right places for finger placement. I was a little leery because there weren't any directions to tell how to hold it but it only fits one way in your hand. I'm right handed and the Pykmax is presently only made for right handed players. The company says they are coming with a left-handed Pykmax. I'm glad I didn't have to wait!

So if you have trouble holding on to a pick - regardless of if you are disabled - or just need a new way to use a pick, pick up a Pykmax. This is great little invention!

Edit: Today is 16 May 2014 - I have yet to throw this pick. Or break any strings. I have accidently had the pick seperate from the body while it was in my pocket but it snapped right back into the black plastic. I'll be ready for the company to start selling individual picks as they won't last forever - hint, hint! Still an amazing device!

Only problem I have encountered is the plectrum wear out pretty quickly. Pykmax hasn't made replacement picks available yet so I got the bright idea of making my own. It's not hard unless you don't see depth (see above). I used the Fender 346 style pick and a Dremel Mototool to drill a slot in the top of the pick. I ruined a couple but I have some keepers. A couple of the mediums and some heavies. Hopefully, Pykmax will release replacements soon. It would be a deal breaker if they didn't since they are $15 a shot at Amazon.

Oh yeah, I still have yet to throw one!


Barney Narcho

Gravity picks should be given alook into.In my opinion they are the very best. I was a V-Pick user,not anymore. They're great for pinched harmonics. Give them a test drive,you won't be disappointed.


Barney Narcho

Gravity picks should be given alook into.In my opinion they are the very best. I was a V-Pick user,not anymore. They're great for pinched harmonics. Give them a test drive,you won't be disappointed.


still rockin'

And yet Brian May made a career just using a coin. I like anything that's around .75mm. Every material adds its own color to the sound. Some good some bad.



Wow...no one mentioned Wegen Picks? http://www.wegenpicks.com/

These things last forever! Little pricey considering its just a pick, but this guy makes them well.

He will even custom make them to the size and shape you want!

I use some custom picks, and I've been using the same pick for five years. They don't die. Drilling holes into them gives a great grip.

For those that are adventurous, you can actually order rods of the material he uses for these and make your own!



I have some double picks that are supposed to make a 6 string sound like a 12 string. Don't really do that but they are neat to play an acoustic with. They make a 12 string sound kind of like a zither or something. Not a brand name that I know of. Got them from Musician's Friend a few years ago, don't know if they still carry them.



If you have not tried Blue Chip Picks ( www.bluechippicks.net ), do your self a favor, pay the money and try one. They are one of the best feeling and fastest picking picks I have used. The sound quality difference is amazing. You may lose one before you wear it out. The one drawback is the cost of about $35.00 for one. Took me forever to pull the trigger, now I am sold.



I used Dunlop nylon .88 mm for YEARS and then a couple of years ago I stumbled across and switched to Snarling Dogs 1 mm nylon Brain Picks. I like the feel and sound of nylon picks and the raised bumpy surface makes Brain picks nearly non-slip. The edges are a too sharp when the pick is brand new so I need to break it in and round the edges for optimum effect. Once the edges settle they're awesome! They're economical too because they last a long time and one box contains a dozen; I also like the little metal box Snarling Dogs Brain Picks come in. Pretty cool.



Where are V Picks? The best money can buy. And they're not one-offs like a lot of these, they make over a dozen models that are each unique.

I'm not going to post a website, but google V-Picks.



Co-signed. V-picks are hands down my favorite - there is a discernible difference in tone and they do not move or slip at all while playing.



Dare to be different? DUNLOP'S ARE NOT DIFFERENT!!!

I'm a little disappointed to see that STAR PICKS from Everly Music are not listed here. They're better than most of the weird picks I see in this list, they're made in the USA and they help you grip the pick via the star cutout. It's all I use...

@Ardiril, you should try them because you wouldn't need to score your picks anymore to get a good grip.




I have played the Dunlop Tortex picks since they came out. I bought a pack of each size, and they last forever, until I lose one. I usually play the yellows, but occasionally switch to the slightly heftier greens. The heavy purples are great for crushing out power chords, and the thin reds are great for smooth even attacks.

I score each one with a couple strokes from an Exacto knife to improve the grip.

#10 above looks like a butt plug.

Log in to Guitar World directly or log in using Facebook

Forgot your username or password?
Click here for help.

  • Sign in with Twitter
Login with Facebook
Log in using Facebook to share comments and articles easily with your Facebook feed.