Versatility

Should guitar equipment be versatile or should it do one thing really well?

I love the lessons by this guy. Anyway, a friend of mine has a Mesa Boogie Mark V amp (even offered to sell me his old Mark IV.. oh money, why aren’t you free?!?). What an amazing amp! There is so much put in there. I am just amazed by the versatility. And when I think of guitars I want, I think of the Parker Fly with its odd shape, piezo pick up, humbuckers with coil splitting, etc. I think of my Warmoth project guitar with the P-Rails that give me a bunch of different combinations of pick up configurations. Very versatile!

But I also think of my Wolverine project guitar which is about as standard strat as you can get. Or my Teisco Del Rey with its very dirty, lo fi sound. These do their thing very well.

And what about pedals? Don’t even get me started on pedals and versatility.

So what do you think? Should gear be versatile or should it be really good at one thing? Can versatile gear still be good? Is it all or nothing?

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2 thoughts on “Versatility

  1. Like most things the answer is somewhere in the middle, I reckon. I gravitate towards gear that is somewhat versatile but, what it does, it does well. I spent years on a quest of trying to build myself the most versatile instrument possible and ended up with something that was mediocre across the board. These days I prefer having a couple of amps and 3-4 guitars that can cover all the bases I want.

    • As always, you are correct. I also gravitate toward versatile. It is such a balance between the gear and the ability. Too often the gear wins out over my ability. But finding some level of comfort is always a goal. Gear should not be a distraction, negative or positive. But now my comment is getting off course. The point is, some versatility is a must (or unlimited funds and time). Even those with unlimited funds don’t have the time to play through all their gear. I remember seeing a picture of Pearl Jam’s storage space. The racks of guitar cases were amazing. But do they get to play all of them? I guess the challenge is part of the fun!

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