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5 Must-Have Accessories for Your Guitar Pedalboard

It's no secret at all – we could spend days, weeks, and months setting up our pedalboard and finding those perfect tones. Finding the right pedals and arranging them in such a way to create your perfect tone is tiring yet surprisingly enjoyable at the same time. Some people mess with their cars, we just love our pedalboards! It's as simple as that.

However, creating one takes more than just pedals. It's interesting how everyone seems to be focused on just effects pedals, yet they forget that there are many other things to think about. Of course, aside from the board or a custom surface that you're making, there are other accessories that will help you in setting things up. There are two main things to consider here. Firstly, some accessories that impact your tone and keep things in order. And secondly, there are things that will add to the functionality or help with the general operation and those difficult pedal dancing moments. Here are the things we consider to be important accessories.

Soldered patch cables

Patch cables are the first thing that you'll need to think about getting after having a few pedals in your collection. After all, this is the only way to put them all together. There are two types of patch cables – soldered and solderless. Although a bit "bulkier" and taking more room on the pedalboard, soldered cables are often considered to be more reliable and are easy to repair. Either way, this is an accessory that you can't go without if you're a frequently gigging musician with a good pedalboard.

Also, it's not recommended that you use those hard and short pedal connectors as they can potentially damage your pedals in the long run. But that's a whole different story.

Power supply with great isolation

In many cases, pedalboards are just empty surfaces designed to hold pedals. Although it sounds simple, it's actually not, as you need to have a special design in order to make it as practical as possible. But this adds another issue, as you'll need to find a way to power all these pedals. This is why we have specialized power supplies, or power bricks, for these setups. However, it's important to have a good one that will keep all the electrical interference and hums out of the way. A great example is MXR's Iso-Brick that has a bunch of variable outputs, anything from 6 to 18 volts.

You should also take care of the number of pedals and the required amperage for your setup.

Barefoot buttons

There are two common types of pedal designs when it comes to switches. A very common one is like we have on Boss pedals where there's an entire movable metal part of the pedal. By pressing on it, you click the internal plastic switch. Then there's the other design type with the classic "clicking" switches. This is often the case with pedals that have dual or multiple operations, like dual drives, some complex choruses, delays, and other effects.

However, pressing on these switches all the time might be a bit annoying for some. Not only can you wear them out in the end, ultimately reducing your pedal's resale value, but it can also be an issue when switching effects during a live show. In order to have a smooth operation, there are so-called Barefoot buttons. These are essentially custom caps for these switches that will make operation more user-friendly and will make your pedals look cooler.

Single-pedal booster

No, this isn't any kind of a clean boost effect. The single-pedal booster is actually a platform that will raise your pedal. It's intended for those hard metal surface pedalboards. In a lot of cases, you can have one pedal that's shorted and sits just below the rest on the flat surface. This can be quite a problem for those who are doing a lot of pedal dancing during their live shows. Pedaltrain makes some of these special single-pedal boosters in different shapes and sizes. You can attach it to the pedalboard either with a velcro tape or with screws.

LED light strips

While it doesn't seem like a super important issue for some, pedalboard visibility can be quite a problem in many live show settings. In that crucial part when you need to use a very specific effect, you might end up missing the cue and ruining a very important moment for a live show. While it may seem strange, some have begun using special LED light strips. This way, you're increasing visibility and getting a better view of the pedalboard and all of the pedals' settings. It's a very clever and stylish solution for this particular issue.

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1 comment

  • Interesting thoughts as to things to get for ones board, I’d also add only have pedals that are being used constantly and not for looks or cool points.. etc.. Sadly more & more people are collecting em like baseball cards as vs using them as tools for a certain tone, and then acting like gatekeepers that insult others if they don’t only use boutique & 20+ pedals. It’s a trend I’d really like to see covered and something that needs to be addressed big time. Lastly, people are even buying em to put on display above their beds .. etc.. so set these people straight and explain they are tools 1st and not baseball cards

    Barry C Collins

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