THE BEST Guitars

(Don’t Fear) The Reaper: Surf Edition

(Don’t Fear) The Reaper: Surf Edition

We can say with certainty that we’ve never heard Blue Öyster Cult’s (Don’t Fear) The Reaper like this before. But we’re impressed with the surf rock treatment that musician Bruce Lindquist gave to the 1976 smash prog rock hit, even if it could use more cowbell.

Making a Goodall Guitar

Making a Goodall Guitar

A video chronicle of the extensive build process that goes into hand-making a custom Goodall Guitar. You’ll need to invest nearly 50 minutes of your time to watch the entire video, but for anyone who appreciates fine craftsmanship, it’ll be worth the effort.

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Tennis Racket Guitar

Tennis Racket Guitar

Sometimes when we play tennis, we we like to fool around and play air guitar with the rackets. But Scrap Wood City went one better, and shows us how they transformed a racket into a fully functional electric guitar. Though it does only have three strings.

15-string Slap Bass Solo

15-string Slap Bass Solo

Musician Davie504 checks out a crazy bass guitar that has 11 more strings than an ordinary 4-string, and does his best to slap his way across even its ridiculously thin and barely usable fat strings at the edges. More 15-string action here.

Roadie 2 Guitar Tuner

Roadie 2 Guitar Tuner

The latest version of the pocket-sized electronic guitar tuner. Unlike its predecessor, Roadie 2 doesn’t need its app to tune your guitar (and other stringed instruments). It also vibrates to let you know when it’s done. The app provides extra features like custom tunings.

Fusion Guitar

Fusion Guitar

This truly 21st-century take on the electric guitar, has a built in dock for an iPhone (5 through 7 Plus) or iPod Touch (5th or 6th gen), and works with iOS apps like IK Multimedia’s Amplitube to modify and sweeten sounds through its 20-watt class D and trio of high-quality speakers.

Loog Pro & Loog Mini

Loog Pro & Loog Mini

New and improved versions of Loog Guitars’ kid-friendly, three-stringed mini guitars. The Loog Pro has improved bridge, neck, pickup and body designs, while the new Mini is for kids as young as 3 years old. Both come fully assembled.

The Dream Factory

The Dream Factory

In 1987, with brand perception at an all-time low, Fender decided to open the Fender Custom Shop – a small unit devoted solely for made-to-order instruments. Fender recently honored the shop’s founding members by collaborating with them once more.

Fret Zeppelin

Fret Zeppelin

Fret Zeppelin uses a row of removable and non-intrusive LEDs together with a mobile app to teach new and intermediate guitar players. It shows notes, chords, scales and styles. It can also use MIDI files to show the chords for songs and act as decorative lighting.

DIY Marceline’s Ax Bass

DIY Marceline’s Ax Bass

DIY Prop Shop usually makes props out of affordable materials, but they shelled out extra for a ready-to-assemble electric bass and brought out their heavy duty tools to make a functioning replica of Marceline the Vampire Queen’s instrument.

Fender American Professional Guitars

Fender American Professional Guitars

Fender presents a massive new series of guitars designed for working musicians. The extensive collection features new Stratocasters, Telecasters, Jazzmasters, Jazz Basses, along with two new models – the Jazzmaster and Jaguar. In all, there are 16 models in 11 colors.

The Shotgun Guitar

The Shotgun Guitar

Yee-Haw! Reverend Peyton of Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band shows off a very special three-string guitar that pickup designer Bryan Fleming made for him. It doesn’t sound like any guitar we’ve ever heard before, but it can still fire shotgun shells with the best of them.

The Manzer Medusa Guitar

The Manzer Medusa Guitar

Luthier Linda Manzer shows off one of the most amazing stringed instruments we’ve ever seen – a multi-necked guitar with a whopping 52 strings that she built for musician Henrik Andersen, based roughly on a hilarious cartoon he provided. Hear Henrik play it at 3:06.

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Free Bird: Korean Style

Free Bird: Korean Style

Musician Luna Lee knocks another hit out of the park, this time covering Lynyrd Skynyrd’s classic Free Bird on her gayageum, an ancient Korean string instrument, not typically associated with rock and roll.

Metal without Distortion

Metal without Distortion

Our brains are so programmed to hearing hard rock and metal guitar riffs played with fuzz, that we’ve forgotten what electric guitars really sound like. The Paranormal Guitar Channel reveals what some tunes sound like without the effect – basically, it’s surf music, a la Dick Dale.

Swirl Painting Guitars

Swirl Painting Guitars

One of the cooler ways to decorate an electric guitar body is to dip its body in a vat filled with several colors of paint. The technique isn’t nearly as easy as DeanSwirled makes it look, so you might want to just have Dean do it for you.

Zombie: Acoustic Cover

Zombie: Acoustic Cover

A wonderful unplugged cover version of The Cranberries’ 1994 classic Zombie, as performed by musician Vedran Djurasovic, who brings a warmer approach to the track than the grunge sounds of the original.

Recycled Skateboard Guitar

Recycled Skateboard Guitar

An incredible, one of a kind electric guitar, handmade using layers of laminated scrap skateboard wood by 2ndShot’s John Gibson (so we guess it’s a Gibson guitar of sorts). It’s fully playable, with Humbucker and hand-wound single coil pickups, and a maple neck.

Fender Mod Shop

Fender Mod Shop

Fender now has an online customizing shop. Start with a Telecaster, Stratocaster, Precision Bass or Jazz Bass body then mix and match pickups, fingerboards, body colors, pickguards and more to suit your needs and taste.

Build Your Own Electric Guitar

Build Your Own Electric Guitar

Jack White’s Third Man Records and Loog Guitars created this kit for kids and kids at heart. The diminutive 3-string electric guitar kit provides the satisfaction of having built your own instrument before you start playing it. We dig the pickguard, made from a vinyl record.

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Yamaha TransAcoustic Guitars

Yamaha TransAcoustic Guitars

Inside the back of Yamaha’s innovative acoustic guitars is an actuator that vibrates against the guitar’s body in response to the strings. This gives you built-in chorus and reverb effects that you can adjust with the built-in control knobs. Runs on two AA batteries.

Debit Girl

Debit Girl

She might look like a darling little 11 year-old girl, but Lisa-X is a serious rocker. Watch as she gets the whole room going by shredding a speed metal rendition of Schubert’s Lullaby on her electric guitar in this commercial for JNB Visa Debit cards.

Shovel Metal

Shovel Metal

Watch musician Rob Scallon shred some tunes on an ordinary garden shovel that’s been converted into a one-string guitar. Given its rudimentary design, it plays surprisingly well. Keep an eye out on How to Make Stuff on 3/3/16 for DIY instructions.

Star Wars Suite on Classical Guitar

Star Wars Suite on Classical Guitar

We’ve heard music from Star Wars playfully performed on a piano and rocked out on an electric guitar. Here’s Rafael Aguirre’s lively rendition, which he performed at Alhambra Guitars’ 50th anniversary. Damas y caballeros, La Guitarra de Las Galaxias.

One Fret Song

One Fret Song

Musician Rob Scallon demonstrates how to play a compelling tune with just a single guitar fret. Sure, he does a whole lot of string bending, but we’re still impressed with the versatility of that one little metal bar.

Inside the Gibson Acoustic Factory

Inside the Gibson Acoustic Factory

While we were touring the mountains in the new 2016 Camaro SS (yeah, hard life, we know), we dropped by the Bozeman, Montana factory where Gibson Acoustic has been crafting guitars for the last 30 years. Incredibly, almost every step of the process is still done by hand.

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