Music Instrument Buying Guides

Overwhelmed by the mindboggling array of music gear out there today? Dazed by all the specs, features, and technobabble? Can’t figure out if you want a guitar with active or passive pickups? Stymied over the best way to get started recording or playing live? Can’t decide what recording equipment is right for your home studio? Uncertain what guitar amp is the right fit for your music and budget? You’ve arrived at the place to get the answers you need. We’ll help you choose the music gear and instruments that makes sense for your style and budget with straightforward, no-B.S. information you can count on.

Finding the Best Travel Guitar

Good to Go: Finding the Best Travel Guitar

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How to choose a travel or mini guitar that’s road-ready and suits your music and budget.

DJ Controller and Interface Buying Guide

DJ Controller and Interface Buying Guide

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Choosing the right DJ controller/interface depends a lot on your software. Here’s the intel you need to make both choices.

How to Choose the Right DJ Equipment

How to Choose the Right DJ Equipment

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Shop smart for DJ controllers, interfaces, software and hardware. Know what to look for when building a rig to fit your budget and skills.

BOSS Guitar Pedals Buying Guide

An Essential Six-Pack of BOSS Stomps

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We highlight a half dozen go-to effects pedals that turn up regularly in the signal chains of the world’s most esteemed guitarists.

Lunchbox and Mini Amps Buying Guide

9 Lunchbox Amps That Deliver a Big Music Meal

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They may be little, but these micro-sized guitar amps have virtues far beyond their modest stature.

Choosing a Guitar for Kids

Beyond Toys: Choosing a Great Beginner Guitar for Kids

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Find the electric or acoustic guitar that’s right for your budding musical genius…and your budget.

DJ Headphones Buying Guide

DJ Headphones Buying Guide

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The features and specs that matter when you’re shopping for a great pair of DJ headphones.

USB Microphone Buying Guide

USB Microphone Buying Guide

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The features and specs that matter when shopping for a USB-friendly mic to record high-quality audio direct to your computer.

Headphones and Earphones Buying Guide

Headphones and Earphones Buying Guide

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What do you look for in headphones and earphones? While there are many models to choose from, your planned use should help greatly to narrow your choices.

Sound quality, of course, is important to everybody; but for some, big bass is a must where others prefer open, full-range reproduction that emphasizes overall accuracy. Other factors include isolation, comfort, weight, portability, and fit, which we’ll discuss below.

Do you need headphones or earphones to plug into a portable player of some kind for casual listening? Or are you looking for a set of studio-worthy reference headphones for monitoring recordings? The following discussion of the different types of headphones and earphones and their applications will give you the basic knowledge you need to choose the right model for your purpose.

Nine Killer Guitar Amps for Metal

9 Killer Guitar Amps Built for Crushing Metal

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We look at a collection of heads, stacks and combos that deliver the high gain and overdrive metalheads thrive on.

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