Which guitar stands are best?
A guitar stand is a fundamentally important accessory that protects your instrument from knocks or falls whenever it is not in use. A good stand also supports the guitar’s neck to maintain good intonation, while also keeping it close at hand for when inspiration strikes. If you own more than one guitar or bass, consider the Hercules GS432BPlus, since it supports up to three instruments at once.
What to know before you buy a guitar stand
Wall hangers vs. guitar stands
Many people favor wall hangers over guitar stands, but there are certain benefits to each. Wall hangers take up little space and keep your instrument flat and upright — within reach but out of harm’s way. With that said, they are completely immobile, so if you plan on changing the position of your guitar, a stand is much more versatile and requires no hardware to install.
Guitar stand materials
Most guitar stands have tubular steel construction, often with interlocking parts. These are sturdily built with foam or rubber padding at points of contact with the instrument. Wooden stands are also popular, usually using A-frame or neck-hanging designs. These are good for supporting acoustic or archtop instruments that are less heavy than solid-body electric guitars.
Types of guitar stands
The most popular type of guitar stand is the three-point stand that supports the lower body and neck of the instrument. A-frame designs are also popular, although they are often heavier than conventional stands and are not as small when collapsed or as supportive when assembled. Neck-hanging designs are gaining popularity and these are similar to wall hangers, as they suspend the guitar from its headstock. Rack stands are often used in commercial spaces, by guitar collectors, or in studios, where multiple instruments need storing for retrieval at a moment’s notice.
What to look for in a quality guitar stand
A guitar stand’s portability is only important if you plan on using it in multiple locations. Multiguitar racks and noncollapsible stands are common in studios and practice spaces, where they are left for permanent use. Mobile musicians favor collapsible stands that can fold away to be stowed in a vehicle or backstage area and assembled during the soundcheck. This helps to make sure your instrument can be left in tune and ready for performance.
Most stands have two lower supports that the bottom of the guitar rests upon, with higher support that secures the neck in a horseshoe-shaped cradle, or yoke. This often has an elastic or plastic barrier to stop the guitar from pitching forward. Some stands use gravity to clamp the guitar within its cradle, while other A-frame designs have no clamping mechanism at all. These stands simply rely on the weight of the instrument and its resting angle to keep it upright.
While guitar stands are designed to protect guitars from impacts and falls, it is important to ensure that there is no contact between the guitar and stand that might damage the instrument. Guitars have a wide range of varieties, including acoustics, archtops, semi-acoustics and solid-body instruments. These come in all shapes and sizes. Not all stands suit all guitars, so check before buying to make sure that your stand will fully support and protect your style of instrument.
How much you can expect to spend on a guitar stand
There is great variance in the price of guitar stands, as they often differ in design, materials and quality. A basic model can cost as little as $10, with most midrange options costing around the $50 mark. Some multi-instrument stands and artisan wooden models can cost more than $100.
Guitar stand FAQ
Is hanging damaging to guitars?
A. Some might worry that unnecessary downward exertion is being placed on the neck of a guitar while it’s in a wall hanger or hanging guitar stand. This is not the case. The weight is countered by the tension of the strings pulling in the opposite direction, so the forces acting upon the instrument are balanced.
Do guitar stands require assembly?
A. This depends on the model, but most stands are portable and can be easily collapsed and reassembled at a moment’s notice. Wall hangers need to be fitted using screws and wall anchors. These usually come with all the necessary hardware included.
What are the best guitar stands to buy?
Top guitar stand
What you need to know: This sturdy stand uses a neck-hanging design to support up to three instruments at the same time.
What you’ll love: The Hercules extends to fit most guitars and basses by using a sprung clutch mechanism. It has durable foam at all points of contact to protect instruments and saves space on the stage and in the studio.
What you should consider: This stand does not support the underside of the instrument and may not work well with some headstock shapes.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top guitar stand for the money
What you need to know: This is a simple and compact solution from Amazon that assembles and folds flat in seconds.
What you’ll love: This stand supports both thin electric guitar bodies and wider acoustic guitar bodies in its padded arms. It has a hinge in the center that makes it highly compact when collapsed for storage.
What you should consider: A-frame style stands do not clamp the instrument and they are susceptible to pitching forward if knocked.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: This tried-and-tested design from Gator has double the capacity, which is handy if you own both electric and acoustic instruments.
What you’ll love: The stand’s twin yokes use rubber bungees to quickly secure the instruments’ necks. It disassembles easily and is lightweight and easy to carry. Its height is adjustable and it uses a simple thumbscrew to lock it into place.
What you should consider: This stand doesn’t have a very strong construction. There are sturdier but heavier models available if this is a concern.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Luke Mitchell writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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