If you’ve spent any time researching gear online, you’ve probably encountered your share of forum threads. If you’ve spent much time on the forums, you’ve probably encountered a legion of fanatics armed with knowledge of the minutiae of everything from vintage drum badges to the different types of screws used in various eras of Boss manufacturing. That and the occasional flame war.
We thought we’d take a minute to give a shoutout to some of favorite gear forums in a totally arbitrary best-in-class style breakdown.
And the forum awards go to…
Best Source for Thinly Veiled Guitar Porn:
“Telecaster” is the most searched-for word on Reverb, and for further proof of the Tele’s enduring popularity, look no further than TDPRI, the mothership of guitar forums. TDPRI is replete with info on every conceivable topic relating to the Telecaster. Sure, plenty of posts might just be unabashed Fender porn, but is there really anything wrong with that? (ahem...see the rest of the GAS Tank blog).
Best Place to Feel Bad About Your Consumer Level Gear:
If you’re looking for help with your interface, DAW, signal path, or just about anything else, you can probably find the answer on Gearslutz somewhere. The gearheads of Gearslutz might be a little on the snooty side, and the reviews can veer towards hyperbole. But that shouldn't detract from the sheer depth of information packed into these pages. It's enough to blow a fuse on even your most trusted outboard compressor.
Best Forum for Instruments that are Just as Important as Guitars:
When it comes to bass forums, the nods got to go to TalkBass. You can find anything and everything relating to the bass on this board. With hundreds of thousands of threads and over 200,000 users, TalkBass is easily one of the most active forums in the whole gear world. There's also a great sense of bass-player solidarity between its low-end leaning membership.
Best Forum Based on the Concept of Asymmetry:
Offsetguitars is a bit smaller of a community than the TDPRIs of the world, but it still features plenty of great guitar discussion and tantalizing eye-candy. Much of this forum is focused on offset benchmark Jaguars and Jazzmasters, but aficionados of offbeat Japanese vintage axes will also feel right at home.
Best Forum to Help You Sound Like the Soundtrack from an '80s Action Flick:
Vintage Synth Explorer is an invaluable resource for all things vintage synth. Apart from an incredible database of makes and models, Vintage Synth Explorer is also home to an active forum. Lots of good information in the buyer’s guide section for anyone looking to break into the rich world of musical synthesis, along with a wide assortment of synth samples, shootouts and other synth resources.
Best Pedal Addiction Support Group:
The Gear Page is an excellent place to learn the wonders of how to GAS for a pedal for months, then sell it two weeks later for something new. Most members of The Gear Page seem to be on a constant quest for a perfect rig along the lines of a vintage Gibson running through an original Klon into a Dumble amp. The Gear Page is probably the only place in the world where one can feel inadequate for only having one Strymon pedal.
Other most excellent forums:
- The Gretsch Pages
- Unofficial Martin Forum
- Electrical Audio Forum
- Official PRS Forum
- Agile Guitar Forum
- My Les Paul
What did I miss? What’s your favorite gear forum? Comment below.