Not enough to buy a guitar (or is it?) … But if you’ve got $50 bucks burning a hole in your pocket and you want to spend it on something guitar or music-related, we’ve compiled a list of eight things that will give you a great bang for those fifty bucks.
1. Buy a TC Electronic Pedal
I don’t think tc electronic have a single bad product in their entire catalog. While a lot of their pedals and effects are around the $100 mark, there are some real gems you can get for less than $50 bucks. The first is the MojoMojo Pedal which provides you with a warm, moist and creamy distortion, and has been a permanent feature on my pedal board for a while now.
Paul Gilbert also loves it, as you can see in the hilarious video below.
Another great tc electronic effect is the Dark Matter Distortion Pedal, but don’t be fooled by the ominous-sounding name as this is not really a heavy metal pedal. It’s that raw, raunchy distortion that comes from a cranked (expensive) amp, and is great for any kind of heavy rock playing.
The final entry in tc electronic’s bargain bin is the Spark, which is an amazingly versatile boost pedal for when you need to take it to 11. It’s also great if you want to push your equipment at lower volumes; plus, Steve Morse uses one so enough said.
2. Buy a Udemy Guitar Course
One of the (many) downsides of YouTube as far as learning guitar goes is the time you waste sifting through crap and clickbait to find some decent lessons, even then you’re only able to really piece together scattered bits of information. This is where Udemy comes in; it’s an online platform with thousands of well-structured, full courses that include video, pdf and audio media all in one place. Luckily for us, there are some great guitar courses on there which you can check out in our round-up of the best ones here.
3. Buy a New Neck
They say a change is as good as a vacation, and I’m sure there’s a guitar in your collection that could do with a new neck. In a recent online search for cheap necks, I found that Amazon US was the clear winner when it came to quality and price, so if you don’t want to spend more than $50 bucks on a new guitar neck, check out these ones on Amazon US.
4. Go to a Pawn Shop and See What You Can Find
It’s amazing what you can find in your average pawn shop these days, especially just after Christmas. I recently picked up this Washburn Strat copy for just over $30 bucks!
5. Buy an Adaptor to Play through Your Phone
If you don’t have one already, it might be a good idea to invest in an iRig adaptor so that you can play through your phone using a growing selection of apps that allow you to try out almost every effect and tone under the sun. The iRig 2, which costs $39.99 is the new and improved version of the groundbreaking iRig guitar interface for iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Mac and Android, and the technology has come a long way since those first adaptors.
6. Buy a Guitar Gadget… or Two
Largely thanks to Kickstarter and other crowdfunding websites, a whole host of guitar gadgets have come to our attention in the last few years. A favorite of mine is the Guitar Triller which allows you to extrapolate all kinds of new sounds from any guitar as you can see in the video below, and is available for less than $20 bucks.
7. Buy a Pineapple Ukulele
The good old ukulele can provide a welcome distraction from guitar, so how about one in the shape of a pineapple for exactly $50 bucks?
8. Make Some Music
If you’ve got access to some kind of iDevice and fancy making some music, or even some backing tracks, why not give Garage Band a go? If you want high-quality results without investing too much time (or money), then Garage Band is worth its weight in gold. To really make the most of GarageBand, you should also check out the fantastic GarageBand Masterclass Course on Udemy, which often comes with a huge discount.