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Christmas gifts for guitar players: 13 affordable present ideas for guitarists

Christmas gifts for guitar players: 13 affordable present ideas for guitarists
(Image credit: Getty/LightFieldStudios)

For most people, Christmas gifts often amount to sock drawer reboots, jumpers you never asked for and passive aggressive attacks on personal hygiene via toiletry sets. As this guide to the best gifts for guitar players proves, guitarists are actually way easier to buy for.

There's the long-term pleasure promised by a three-pack of strings or a guitar-specific tool set to make sure the guitarist in your life is never caught short.  You could even open a whole new world of sonic possibilities for your designated guitar geek with a tone-bending stomp box, or a humble capo. If your giftee is all about saving the planet, we've even included a snazzy vegan guitar strap.

The good news? Being thoughtful doesn't have to mean draining your budget entirely. When it comes to guitarists, useful trumps expensive every time...

On the hunt for a different kind of guitar-shaped bargain? Check out our pick of the latest Black Friday guitar deals.

Gifts for guitar players: Under $/£20

Gifts for guitar players: Fast Fret String Cleaner

(Image credit: GHS)

1. Fast Fret String Cleaner

Clean strings. Happy guitarist...

Price: $5.99/£6.99

Improves the feel of any guitar
Lubricates and protects the strings
Cheap as chips

This little tin of slippery greatness has been a favourite of guitarists for years. The idea is to rub its sticky bit up and down the strings of a guitar. It not only lubricates the strings but protects them from the hideous secretions that seep from your fingertips. Strings live longer and the guitar just feels nicer to play.

Gifts for guitar players: ernie ball super slinky

(Image credit: Ernie Ball)

2. String multipacks

The ultimate guitar perishable, replenished

Price: From $7/£7 a set

Strings wear out or break
New ones are always appreciated
You can save money buying multiple sets

Guitar players always need fresh strings. These days you can buy multi-packs to keep your musical other half on the road to ultimate stardom. The only catch is that we've suggested a popular choice but you need to do your homework and wheedle out what brand and gauge your friend/partner/significant other likes. You could just ask them, or you could check out our guide to the best electric guitar strings. More of an acoustic player? We’ve got a guide for that too...

Christmas Gifts for Guitarists: Fender Brass Slide 1

(Image credit: Fender)

3. Fender Brass Slide 1

Put a thing on their finger

Price: $9/£7.99

It opens up a whole new world of guitar cool
They can play the 'another year older' blues

There's no sweeter sound than George Harrison playing slide guitar. That's a fact. A slide is essentially a glass, ceramic or metal tube dragged along the strings to emulate the sound of a wailing human voice. In the wrong hands it can sound like a dying cat being pulled through a hedge backwards, but this fancy brass number from Fender is a brilliant choice for a guitarist that wants to try something new. 

Gifts for guitar players: Big Bends Nut Sauce

(Image credit: Big Bends)

4. Big Bends Nut Sauce

Slippery when wet

Price: $14/£10.40

Helps prevent strings dragging in the top nut. Result? Better tuning...
The name always raises a smile

Yeah, go on, get it out of your system. Guitar culture's best double entendre since the Big Muff Pi fuzz box, you squirt Nut Sauce lubricant into the slots on the guitar's top nut to help tuning stability. Some people use the graphite in the humble pencil instead. 2B or not 2B? We'd stick with the Nut Sauce.

Gifts for guitar players: Schaller strap locks

(Image credit: Schaller)

5. Schaller strap locks

Everything in its right place.

Price: From $/£20

These things help a guitar defy the occasionally devastating effects of gravity
Easy to install and live with

There's nothing more distressing for a guitarist than the moment their pride and joys slips off its strap and hits the deck. If Sir Isaac Newton were around today, and riffing and that, he would be using strap locks. These are available in various finishes - black, gold, nickel, chrome - to suit the rest of the hardware on a guitar. So, do your homework...

Gifts for guitar players: $/£20-50

Gifts for guitar players: Fender Custom Shop DLX Guitar Care Kit

(Image credit: Fender)

6. Fender Custom Shop DLX Guitar Care Kit

The ultimate gift for guitar players who want a clean tone

Price: $24.99/£22.99

Protects the guitars painted and shiny parts
Gives strings a chance of a better life…

There are two types of guitarist. Those that keep their gear clean... and those filthy beasts that need to get their act together. Keeping a guitar clean and polished protects the finish and hardware, and actually adds to the lifespan of guitar strings. This Fender set comes with a cleaner, polish, quick clean and a fingerboard revitaliser.

Gifts for guitar players: Perris vegan velvet guitar strap

(Image credit: Perris)

7. Perris vegan velvet guitar strap

The best gift for guitar players who don't eat meat...

Price: $27.29/£27.99

No animals were harmed in the making of this guitar accessory
You won't be able to tell the difference. Unless you chew it

Yeah, get them a great strap without being an accessory to animal cruelty. Don't scoff. Vegan guitar straps are every bit as good looking and strong as those formed from forcibly deceased beasts. There are a load of designs available so if anyone needs to hang a guitar inches from their crotch there's no need to be hell bent for leather.

Christmas Gifts for guitarists: TC Electronic June-60

(Image credit: TC Electronic)

8. TC Electronic June-60

Inspiration in a little box...

Price: $48/£35

 Classic 80’s tone
 Solid steel enclosure
 Simple to use 

TC Electronic has been a pedal making super-power for a while now, and rightly so. Their ability to make great sounding, durable and affordable gear has made them very popular with us axe-wielding creatives. Not only is it the perfect size to fit in a Christmas stocking - the June 60 Chorus accurately replicates that fantastically overwhelming chorus tone that was so prevalent in the 80’s, when all music was better (fact) and guitarists led the charge. It’s nice and simple, with only two modes. Mode 1 is basically ‘on’, and mode 2 is just ‘more’ - and they both sound pretty damn good. It doesn’t half look cool too. 

Gifts for guitar players: From $/£51-100

Gifts for guitar players: CruzTools GrooveTech Guitar Tech Kit

(Image credit: CruzTools)

9. CruzTools GrooveTech Guitar Tech Kit

Help 'em be their own guitar tech

Price: $59.99/£55

Everything needed for easy guitar maintenance
All the goodies are kept together in a smart pouch

Every guitarist needs a good tool kit. CruzTools are the masters of putting the right tool in a guitarist's palm. This set contains a string cutter and winder, a ruler and a six-one screwdriver. The Allen keys are supplied in metric and Imperial to cover all guitar brands. There's an easy guide to setting up the action (string height) and intonation. If your guitar friend is a Fender freak get the Custom Shop version.

Read the CruzTools GrooveTech Guitar Tech Kit review

Gifts for guitar players: G7th Capo Performance 3 18K Gold

(Image credit: G7th)

10. G7th Capo Performance 3 (18K Gold)

The ultimate cure for a pressing engagement

Price: $69

Adapts to any acoustic and electric guitar
It's tougher than The Times crossword
Quick to deploy and reposition 

All you need to know about capos is you can't play The Beatles' Here Comes The Sun the way George Harrison intended, without one. That goes for Johnny Marr stuff too. Until recently, you had to pick one of these useful gadgets to fit either an acoustic or electric guitar. The clever little G7th Performance 3 handles both. If you really want to push the boat out, this 18k plated edition is good as gold.

Gifts for guitar players: $/£150+

Gifts for guitarists: Yamaha JR1 3/4 size acoustic guitar

(Image credit: Yamaha)

11. Yamaha JR1 3/4 size acoustic guitar

Size ain't everything. Except in the case of overhead baggage...

Price: $150/£125

Easy to cart around
Actually puts out a sweet tone
Playability is great
Comes with a gigbag

If you think the best thing about a holiday is putting considerable distance between your loved one and their guitar, you can sit this one out. For the rest of you, consider buying your travelling companion a travel guitar. The 3/4 size JR1 is just the thing for campsite sing-alongs and impromptu busking, if that's their thing.

Gifts for guitar players: Boss Katana MKII 50 Amplifier

(Image credit: Boss)

12. Boss Katana MKII 50 Amplifier

When one amp just isn't enough...

Price: $229/£229

Killer sounds
Portable yet powerful
Reasonably priced

What if we said you could buy the guitarist in your life a whopping ten amplifiers and 65 effects? And all for less than the price of a games console. The Boss Katana II 50 watt combo uses clever internal gubbins to replicate the sound of the aforementioned mountain of gear. Plus, it can be run at gig, rehearsal and bedroom volume. Yes, there is a headphone socket. 

Christmas Gifts for guitarists: Martin LX1E

(Image credit: Martin)

13. Martin LX1E Little Martin

A Little Martin with a big personality

Price: $449/£499

Solid spruce top
Easy to play
Portable 

The Martin LX1 is the smallest and cheapest of the Little Martin series acoustics, but you absolutely don’t compromise on tone or quality as a result. The solid Sitka spruce top is of the same grade as some of Martin’s most desirable USA-made models, and paired with the durable HPL back and sides this little beauty provides a depth of tone that no other small bodied acoustic can get close to. It’s that typical Martin sound - but in a nice neat package. This LX1E has an internal pickup from Fishman, who are widely regarded as one of the best in the business. Plug this bad boy in and it’ll produce an arena-filling sound.