Pick Design Reference

The operation of the ubiquitous string-plucking wedge is deceptively complicated. Attributes like thickness, point shape, edge shape, and material choice can all influence how picks behave when they hit the strings.

This reference is both an introduction to the history of picks as well as a detailed investigation of how they work. It includes an array of in-depth tests of pick shapes, gauges, materials, and more, and how those attributes affect playing technique and frequency response.

Pick Design And Function Reference

Chapter 1 - The Classic 351

This historic D'Andrea design is the pick we all know, whether we know it or not


Chapter 2 - The Jazz III

The jazz pick that conquered rock, and how its signature point affects tone


Chapter 3 - The Big 346

This triangular ancestor of the modern large pick is another D'Andrea creation


Chapter 4 - Gauge

Testing the effect of pick thickness on frequency response and dynamics


Chapter 5 - Material And Tone

What are picks made of, and what do those materials sound like?


Chapter 6 - Chirp

Love it, hate it, or maybe never even notice it, chirp reveals how you play and how you listen


Chapter 7 - Abrasion

The connection between pick wear, surface texture, and frequency response