As any guitarist will tell you, having the best capo will make your life much easier. Countless songs require this guitar accessory to be able to play them properly. If you're a folk musician then you certainly won't be able to live without a capo.
But what is it? It's a very simple piece of equipment that raises the pitch of your electric or acoustic guitar. It does this by barring the strings on the fret where you place it, allowing you to play higher up the fretboard with more ease too.
There are hundreds of capos on the market, and it can be difficult to know what one to buy, which is why this article should help you a lot.
Table of Contents
- Here is Our Review of the Top 10 Greatest Guitar Capos for 2021 :
- Capo Buyers Guide
On our list, you will find capos in a wide range of prices. We'll explain exactly why we rate certain ones so highly and analyze the pros and cons of each product. At the end of the article, you'll find all the FAQs answered so that you can then make an informed purchase.
Here is Our Review of the Top 10 Greatest Guitar Capos for 2021 :
Multiple Capos - It's always a good idea to have more than one capo around so that you can keep one at home and bring one in your gig bag. This way, you're always prepared whether you're about to record or perform for others. Different guitars may require different capos based on the neck and string type.
1. Nordic Essentials Deluxe
Top of our list is a professional capo that's been made by Nordic Essentials. It's got crisp, clean looks that won't look out of place on stage. The company's logo has been beautifully engraved into the hinge of the product. The metal finish doesn't just look good too. It also enhances the durability of this capo.
It comes in five colors, allowing you to pick one to suit your style and guitar. There are metallic bronze, matte silver, matte coffee, metallic gold, and metallic black to choose from. Regardless of the color, you can always be assured of a quality product that is built to last.
This capo can be used for both electric and acoustic guitars, as well as for ukuleles, mandolins, bass guitars, and banjos! If you're a multi-instrumentalist, then this is a superb feature, as it can be clipped onto all your stringed instruments.
It's a solid product that doesn't require a huge amount of strength to use. The release is quick and easy. It's not stiff, which is a drawback of a lot of cheaper models. It's made from high-grade materials, such as zinc. Each capo comes with a lifetime warranty. Even if it breaks, then you can get it replaced for free. It comes with a handy carry pouch to keep it in too, which is very useful if you take it with you to gigs.
+ Includes a carry pouch
+ Made with premium-grade zinc
+ Lifetime warranty
Why We Liked It - It's a high level capo that's built to last. The lifetime warranty is a useful extra, just like the carry pouch that makes transporting it a breeze. Overall, it's quite simply a quality product that Music Critic rates as the best capo on the market.
2. Shubb Deluxe Series
Next up is this eye-catching, unique capo from Shubb. It's Amazon's 'Top Choice' and has received countless five-star reviews from satisfied customers. The reason why it's so popular is because of its thoughtful design. Your hand will have more space and freedom when it's attached to your guitar compared to bulkier capos. It's also very sturdy, despite its lightweight design. It can be attached and detached from your guitar with great ease. Acoustic guitar strings aren't compressed too close to the fretboard either, which is a drawback of cheap models. The minimalist design is also very stylish and would look good on a wide range of guitars.
You don’t have to worry about any unwanted spring vibrations. This capo puts equal pressure on all six strings and this, in turn, means that none of the strings are too loose. It’s easy to modify and fits almost every guitar neck, and if it doesn’t you can always adjust the screws so that it does fit. It is one of the most versatile capos on the market today, and it’s truly worth paying extra for, in our opinion.
+ Unique design
+ Adjustable and versatile
Why We Liked It - It's got a very unique, spring-free design, and is also very durable and precise. It presses down all your strings with equal pressure so that there's no buzz or dampening of the sound. This product has it all, and our team can highly recommend it.
3. Donner DC-2
Donner is well-known for delivering superb value-for-money with its guitar accessories and effects pedals. This cap is a perfect example of why Donner has earned this stellar reputation. It's half the price of many of the capos on our list, yet this is very much a five-star product.
If you want a good-looking capo that does its job well and is also extremely affordable, then this one is a superb choice. There are five colors to choose from, which are gold, black, silver, and cinnamon.
One of the worries with cheap capos is the possibility that they will scratch or damage your guitar. Fortunately, that's not the case with this one. It's also very easy to remove it, as the release is smooth.
It fits perfectly on both electric and acoustic guitars, banjos, folk guitars, ukuleles, and other stringed instruments. There's no fret buzz when it's used. It delivers firm pressure across all six strings. It's a good pick for anyone on a shoestring who wants an effective, affordable capo that's been made by a reliable brand.
+ Built to last
+ Easy to move
+ Leaves no scratches behind
Why We Liked It - It's affordable, effective, and made by a brand you can trust. It won't scratch your beloved instrument. Nor will it require a lot of effort to move it, even in the middle of a gig. It's a safe investment for anyone on a budget, in our opinion.
Capo Placement - Place your capo as close to the fret as possible for the best results. Also, make sure you're placing your capo so that it directly clamps down on the strings. You don't want any strings to be skewed one way or another. If this happens, realign your capo.
4. Planet Waves NS
Planet Waves is another company that has made it their goal to give customers capos with unique designs so that they don't get in the way when you're playing.
This one is very compact and looks good thanks to the hook shape. You have six colors to choose from, which are black, silver, classical, lite, bronze, and metallic gray. It’s designed for acoustic-electric guitars. The micrometer tension adjustment ensures that you don't get any fret buzz, regardless of where on the fretboard it is placed.
You can easily move this capo with just one hand thanks to its lightweight design. The durable, thermoplastic construction ensures that you can use this capo for years without needing to replace it.
This product is not recommended for 12-string guitars. 12-string guitars need special capos that can provide the same amount of pressure over twice the amount of electric guitar strings.
If you've got a 6-stringer, though, then this is a superb product that's been made by a company that's put a lot of thought into its design process.
+ Variety of colors
+ Unique design that's perfect for acoustic-electric guitars (see our top 10 for under 1000 bucks)
+ Durable construction
Why We Liked It - This Planet Waves product is ideal for anyone who wants durability, functionality, and good looks all in one. It's a lightweight capo that can be placed anywhere on your fretboard with ease. It's simply a solid product that's made by a quality company. We liked it a lot!
5. Dunlop 83CB Acoustic
Dunlop is another brand that is well-known for superb guitar accessories. This capo comes in five colors, which are black, gold, nickel, smoked chrome, and a very attractive, maple pattern that has a distinct wooden texture.
This is a highly versatile product that can be used for both 6-string and 12-string guitars. It is made from quality aluminum. It's got a strong spring that clamps it in place effectively. You will not have to worry about this capo ever coming loose.
This product features an ergonomic design that makes re-positioning it very easy indeed. Even if you're midway through a gig, you can move it with one hand in a matter of seconds. The handle is padded, which makes it comfortable when you are squeezing it. It's certainly softer than the hard aluminum.
It's also important to mention just how cheap this capo is. It's one of the most affordable on the market, which makes it a top choice for anyone looking for value-for-money. The quality certainly far outweighs the price tag.
+ Five colors
+ Lightweight, quality aluminum
+ Padded handle for easy use
Why We Liked It - This product has been on the market for well over two decades now and remains one of the most popular amongst guitarists of all levels. It looks great and does a fantastic job of keeping the strings tight and pressed against the frets both with 6-string and 12-string guitars. If you are looking for a bargain, then this is a great choice!
6. KLIQ K-PO
KLIQ has excelled itself with this lovely capo that features a unique design. It doesn't have any hard edges, like most other capos, and instead has rounded edges. It is very comfortable to hold thanks to the roundness of the design. You can also quickly move it without causing any pain to your hands. It comes in three colors, which are black chrome, brushed bronze, and satin silver.
This capo is designed to be fast and convenient when quickly switching between frets. You do not have to worry about fiddling with this capo on stage. The spring integrated into this capo is calibrated to give the optimal amount of pressure along the fretboard. You won’t have to worry that your strings are either coming loose or pressed too tight.
This product is designed for acoustic and electric guitars. It comes with a metal carrying case to ensure that you keep it safe during travels. Also, being able to store it in a case when it's not in use makes it far less likely that you'll lose it. After all, this is a small piece of kit, and it can be easily lost.
+ Attractive design
+ Metal carrying case
+ Three colors
Why We Liked It - It has a very unique and attractive design, which aids its effectiveness. It comes with a handy metal carrying case to keep it safe. It’s recommended to put the capo back in the case so you don’t lose it! Overall, it's a flawless product that's well worth the money. It looks great too!
7. xGuitarx Ultra Lightweight
xGuitarx’s capo has been on the market for a bit over two years now. It quickly became a bestseller and you'll often find it on Amazon's ten most popular capos list. It's easy to see why it sells so well. The design is modern and understated, with the matte finish adding to the visual appeal.
Simplicity is the key reason why it is so popular. It's designed to function properly without any unnecessary frills. There's no need to worry about it breaking, as it is highly durable, in our opinion. It comes with a lifetime warranty, so if you do have any issues, then you will be sent a replacement by the manufacturer. It comes in a range of colors, including black, gold, silver, and metallic blue.
It is easy to move thanks to a smooth release. It fits on electric, acoustic, and bass guitars, as well as ukuleles and banjos. If you play more than one string instrument, this capo will get a lot of use. It’s built to last and is made from very lightweight aluminum. The silicone pad will protect the neck of your guitar from any scratches.
+ No fret buzz
+ Made from lightweight aluminum
+ Lifetime warranty
Why We Liked It - xGuitarx’s capo is best for anyone that is looking for a durable, average priced capo that does its job effectively. It's a little more expensive than a budget model but you get the lifetime warranty with it, so it's worth the extra bucks, in our opinion. You probably won't need to buy another capo again, as long as you don't lose it.
8. Liroyal Single-handed
This is one of the cheapest capos around. For less than five bucks, you can buy this solid product that's been made by Liroyal. It's a great choice for anyone who is buying their very first capo and doesn't yet know if this accessory is for them. It comes in seven colors, which are green, blue, gold, red, white, black, and silver. There are two styles to choose from too. One is a bog-standard capo, while the other features a more unique, modern design that reminds us of an archer's bow.
This capo is compatible with acoustic and electric guitars. It won’t budge when you put it on the desired fret. And it won't hurt your hand when you try to remove it, as the release is smooth. It's a very efficient and durable capo that is praised by many for its build quality. It's ideal for anyone wanting to spend a few bucks on a capo to decide if it's for you. It might not last you a lifetime but it will do the job for now.
+ Very affordable
+ Tight, firm hold
Why We Liked It - It's cheap and effective. For both these reasons, it's a solid purchase for anyone wanting a bargain capo that works well. If you're the kind of guitarist who always mislays equipment, then this capo is so cheap you could buy a couple to have around, just in case.
9. Kyser KG6B
This is a truly unique capo that has certain details to it that makes it stand out from the crowd. It also comes in eleven colors, so it's easy to find one that will suit your style and instrument. Some of the colors are very funky indeed! It's been on the market for more than a decade, and it's been very popular during the whole of that time. The thoughtful design makes it easy to adjust. And the hinge is stiff to begin but loosens up with more use. That doesn't mean that the grip gets weaker, though. This capo is designed for regular use over a long period, and it's certain to be effective for many years.
If you've bought a capo before that has buzzed during a live concert and has dampened the sound of your strings, you should be happy to hear that this capo does none of that. It’s perfect for playing live. You can clamp it onto your ax with confidence and play to your audience without any worries. When the song is done, you can easily take the capo off or move it to other frets with one hand. This capo is extremely efficient and doesn’t interfere with playing at all.
+ Best for live concerts
+ Funky and unique patterns
+ Reliable and efficient
Why We Liked It - If you decide to get this product, you will be investing in one of the best capos available on the market today. It's perfect for use during live concerts, in our opinion. For gigging musicians, it's our top recommendation. We also love the huge range of funky colors and designs that you can purchase it in too. If you want an effective, reliable capo, then this is it.
10. Deal Grinder Co. GP004
This is another very affordable product that costs less than five bucks. The low price makes it a good choice if you want a cheap replacement for a broken capo or if you simply want to try out a capo and see if it's for you. It's suited to acoustic and electric guitars. We think that it is very sturdy, which is due to the thick metal that it's made from. There's no need to worry about any fret buzz too, as it is highly effective and strong.
The capo is padded and has very efficient spring-action that can help you easily move it across the frets without any issues. The color of the finish is silver. There is an adjustment knob on the back of it that you can use if you find that your guitar's neck is too big for it. It has a solid build and will last a decent amount of time without the grip weakening, in our opinion.
+ Very affordable
+ Fits almost any guitar neck
+ Adjustment screw
Why We Liked It - If you are searching for an affordable and reliable product that will make your jamming sessions and performances a bit more interesting, this is the best capo to go for! Despite the super low price, it delivers a durable construction and an effective design. Whether you play an electric or an acoustic guitar, this is an affordable capo to use.
Getting Used To Your Capo - Upon first use, your capo may seem fairly tight. This is a good thing, as tight springs mean that your strings are less likely to vibrate while your capo is in use. If you notice your capo starting to get loose, it may be time to look for a replacement.
Capo Buyers Guide
What is a Guitar Capo?
A capo is a small clamp that is clipped onto a guitar's fretboard (click for the study on other techniques). This, in turn, bars the strings, and it results in a shorter length of the strings. That means that it makes the pitch of the instrument higher.
This little device has been around since the 1640s, although the design wasn't patented until the 1850s. Many musical genres rely heavily upon the capo. Irish folk music and flamenco are two such genres, but many others also use them.
How to Use a Capo for a Guitar
Using a capo is extremely easy, all you need to do is clip it onto any fret you like and start playing!
What is the Best Acoustic Guitar Capo?
Some of the best capos for classical guitars are made by Dunlop. They are very tough capos that can hold down the thick and tough strings that are common on acoustic guitars - read the study here. The Dunlop 85FB is a particularly good product, in our opinion. It's sturdy and highly effective. It’s also very affordable, pricing at under 15$. You also have three colors to choose from, which are gold, nickel, and black.
What is the Best Electric Guitar Capo?
There are many fine electric guitar capos on the market, but the one that stands out is the Shubb C1 Nickel Capo. It comes in four colors. They are black, brass, bronze, and chrome. It offers you control over how tightly you clip the capo onto your guitar. It’s also rather small and compact, which makes it a good travel companion!
Can you Use a Guitar Capo on a Ukulele?
People often ask how versatile capos are. The answer is: extremely! A capo can be put on ukulele strings without any issues at all. Capos can also be used on mandolins, folk guitars, banjos, etc. It's always worth checking the product description for a capo before purchasing it just to confirm that it is suitable for other stringed instruments. In most cases, however, a guitar capo is fine for other stringed instruments.
What are the different types of Capo?
There are many types of capos, and each and every one of them will give you a very unique set of sounds. Capos are good products to have around so that you can experiment. If you have a string instrument and want to play around with the pitch, a capo is a fantastic device to buy. Let's have a look at the five most common types of capos and what they do.
+ A clamp capo - This is the most common capo that you'll find on the market. It clamps onto the neck of the guitar, barring all six strings at the same time, and it can be easily removed. Usually, it will feature a spring mechanism.
+ A Shubb - This capo has a screw and lever to help you adjust its size to match the thickness of your guitar's neck.
+ A g-band - This capo holds down only specific strings. Usually, it will be used for either the bottom or top strings. This gives it a distinct ‘G’ shape since it doesn’t go over all of the strings.
+ A slider - This capo can easily slide from one fret to another without you having to remove it.
+ A spider - This capo holds down selected strings. It's a bit more complicated than the previous capos, and it is also more expensive. It offers you many more options, though, and is a good choice for anyone keen to experiment with sound.
Our Top Choice has to go to Nordic Essential’s capo. Not only does it have five, very attractive colors to choose from. But it also has a lot of features that would attract even the fussiest of customers. After you've selected the color and made a purchase, then you'll get a full lifetime warranty and a small pouch to put the capo in to keep it safe. It’s the best bundle that anyone could ask for. It has a high-quality sense to it, which is thanks to the premium-grade zinc coating. It can be used for a lot of stringed instruments, such as mandolins, ukuleles, and banjos.
This capo is a breeze to use. You can easily move it with a single hand. Some capos tend to be extremely stiff and very hard to grab, but this is not the case with Nordic Essential’s product. It is a durable, modern-looking, and fashionable capo. Of course, looks aren't the most important feature of a capo, but it is a key feature of this specific capo. If you're a performer who doesn't want anything harming your style on stage, then we think you'll love this eye-catching product.
This Nordic Essentials capo is our Top Choice because it is packed with handy features, like the carry pouch and lifetime warranty. It means that you never need to worry about it breaking, as the carry case will keep it safe, and even if it does break, then the lifetime warranty will have you covered.
Our Premium Choice spot has to go to Shubb’s capo, the GC-30! It's one of the highest-rated capos on Amazon, and it's easy to see why. Shubb isn’t afraid of innovation and experimentation. This mindset has led them to create one of the most sought-after capos around. It has been on the market for nearly a decade, and yet it still manages to keep a full 5-star rating from satisfied customers.
The unique design doesn't just look good, it's effective too, in our opinion. This product doesn’t get in the way when you're playing, which is a common problem with many other capos. Shubb has been working with guitarists for thirty-five years, and the experience it has gained during this time translates into this awesome product. Above all else, this is simply an effective product that is built to last. As with any premium product, you're paying extra for it, and yet, this one still offers great value, we think, because the quality is exceptional.
Shubb’s capo is our Premium Choice because locking and removing it is very easy. You don’t need to use much pressure at all. The rubber works just like your fingers would when holding the strings down, so there's no need to worry about the guitar's neck being scratched or your strings being damaged. It's a superb product that's stood the test of time, and if you're willing to pay a bit extra, then we don't think you'll be disappointed with the superb capo.
Our Great Value spot has to go to one of Donner’s capos. We all know how great this company is when it comes to value-for-money products. Donner is the company that guitarists often go to for their first accessories. Whether it's an effects pedal or a plectrum, Donner knows how to produce quality for less. And that's the same with this capo, which won't break the bank but will provide you with years of use without any breakages. It's 2nd best-selling capo on Amazon because people love it, and we do too! This cheap product is available in four different colors too, so you'll always find one to suit your style.
This little device will leave no scratches behind when you move it around. It won’t give you any fret buzz either. It's also been designed so that it won’t loosen its grip, even when it's been attached to your guitar for hours at a time. If you do decide to move it, then it will be a breeze, and it's got a smooth release. This cap isn't just built to last, but it's also lightweight too, as it has been made from high-quality zinc. That's a material that looks good for a long time too.
Thanks to its combination of an affordable price and premium quality, this Donner capo has to be our Great Value choice. It's quite simply a fantastic product that you can get for less than ten bucks but is built to last you years. We're big fans of Donner, and we can always recommend its products as being reliable, even if they might not be the most advanced at times.
There are so many fantastic capos on the market, it can be overwhelming when you're confronted with so much choice. The key is simply picking a product that suits your guitar - especially if it is a 7-string or 12-string guitar - and fits your budget. After you've isolated your choices by focusing on these two important features, then you can start looking at the durability of the product. You also want to make sure that it is a color that appeals to you too.
We can highly recommend any of the ten capos on our list. We hope that having read this article, you now know what one you're going to buy. We also hope that the article has answered all the questions you might have about this handy accessory.
If you've enjoyed this review by Music Critic, please leave a positive rating: