As we wrap up the year 2019, the first year of Guitars For Idiots existence, I can’t help but reflect on all the highlights of year. Whether it was great gear, artist interviews, concerts, or partscasters, this year was a way bigger success than I imagined it would be. 2020 already figures to be even better with more gear scheduled for review in the first couple months than we did in all of 2019.
With our last post until 2020, let’s look back at the best gear in each category that we reviewed this year and hand out our “Best of 2019” awards. It’s been a fun year filled with awesome gear, see my favorites below!
Best Electric Guitar: Guild Jetstar
There isn’t much more I can say about the Guild Jetstar. It’s the best guitar I reviewed all year regardless of price. Sure, boutique offerings like the CMG Ashlee or DeMont Goldfinch are great guitars, and the Fender Ultra Strat is highly evolved engineering, but this guitar was the most fun to play. It has eye catching looks, a comfortable neck, and two killer “Toaster Top” pickups. Get one of these as soon as possible.
Best Amplifier: Blackstar Studio 10 6L6
In my opinion, small, tube combo amps are the best amps on the planet. Having the ability to crank the amp and get that natural, tube overdrive without busting through your windows is just fun. I get the some players want a larger amp like the CMG Jimmy for live purposes, but why not just put a mic in front of this little Studio 10 6L6? It sounds great, it doesn’t cost a lot, and it was a highlight for sure.
Best Pedal: JHS Muffuletta Fuzz
The JHS Muffuletta packs six classic fuzz tones into one pedal, making it one of the most versatile and fun pedals I’ve ever played. “JHS” and “Civil War” were the two best settings but none of them disappointed. The Muffuletta was well built, quiet, and produced tons of sounds that made me want to pick up my guitar, it sounded especially good with the Jetstar and my Telecaster.
Best Electric Bass: Squier Classic Vibe ’70s Precision Bass FSR
This bass wound up in my hands kind of on a whim. I had accumulated way too much gear from all these reviews and decided to trade some in to a local guitar store. While I should have pocketed all the money for real world expenses, I couldn’t say no to this surf green P bass. Even though it is a Squier, this is a perfect example of how far the high-end Squiers have come. It feels like a Fender, sounds like a Fender, and has top level craftsmanship.
Best Acoustic Guitar: Yamaha FG3
Last but not least, the Yamaha FG3 was the best acoustic I played all year. We didn’t review a ton of acoustics, something that will change for 2020, but that shouldn’t impact how you view the FG3. This is a true player’s guitar, it’s comfortable, resonant, and it just makes you want to play it. I loved it because I felt like this was the kind of guitar I would write a million songs on while it was laying around the house. The FG3 is just another hit in a long line of Yamaha’s acoustic success story.