Let’s take look at the best gifts for musicians, beat makers, audiophiles, and guitar geeks. It’s time for my annual lineup of options you (most likely) won’t find on those played-out boring lists that litter the internet every year. Most musicians already have what they need, or just want something that’s far too pricey for most folks to purchase as gifts. While you will find some options that are a bit more expensive than most would like this year, I’ve tried to include some gear that’s lesser-known, incredibly useful, and not something every musician and home producer already has. Hit the fold for our picks of the best gifts for musicians, beat makers, audio nerds, and guitar geeks.
Let’s keep it new, we won’t look at the same old MIDI controllers that have been on the market for 100 years, that Marshall guitar jack key holder – if I see this thing I mean even one more time. Clip-on tuners almost everyone already has/no one needs because they have one on their phone, or a Fender Play online guitar lesson subscription – okay, this one is pretty good, but it’s played out, and we have featured it in years past already.
Best gifts for musicians, beat makers, audiophiles, and guitar geeks
Rode Universal Thread Adaptor Kit
Here’s one that seemingly flew way under the radar (unless you’re a 9to5Toys reader anyway) and is easily one of the best gifts for musicians and content creators this year. This handy pocket-sized keyring-ready device provides an immediate solution to content creators, or really anyone using tripods or mic stands. It provides, in one small handy steel and brass device, a way to connect any of your gear at a moment’s notice when mounting to a boom arm, mic stand, or boom pole – no more emergency trips to Guitar Center, just an attractive key ring sized solution that will adapt just about any piece of gear to the stand you have in front of you. It provides 1/4, 3/8, and 5/8-inch threads in one device alongside a driver for tightening or loosening each of its adapters.
You can learn more in our launch coverage as well.
6amLifestyle Headphone Hanger
There are more pricey options out there, including The Anchor and Brainwavz BigT variants, but after going hands-on with this more affordable solution earlier this year, there’s really no need to spend the money. The 6amLifestyle Headphone Hanger provides a solution to a problem all musicians have: messy wired headphones with nowhere to put them and dwindling desktop space because the gear is everywhere. I have had the 6amLifestyle Headphone Hanger fixed under my studio desk for most of this year, carrying a pair of quite heavy Beyerdynamic headphones, and it has been the best $10 (or two for $13) I’ve ever spent. It can be affixed to just about anything with a strong 3M adhesive or with the included hardware.
Oakywood pick and accessory holders
You can go for one of those gimmicky Beatles tins to carry and stow your extra guitar picks, and that might be a viable option for super fans, but I for one prefer to go for a far more classy and visceral approach: Oakywood’s latest Blocks desktop organizers. Available in a few form factors, the OakyBlocks gear launched back in October and after going hands-on and implementing them into my home studio, there’s really no turning back. Everything is magnetic so you can neatly organize various pieces, or you can just opt for a single desk tray to collect picks, the Thread adapter above, and any other small trinkets and tools laying around your workspace. You can get a closer look at the lineup in our launch coverage (alongside some information on how to knock your price down) but you’ll find each of the options listed below as well (I like the small tray because it’s easy to slide the guitar picks out of the rounded inner edges):
Apogee Duet 3 Audio Interface
This is a list of the best gifts for beat makers, so we would be remiss not to include an audio interface on the list. And when you’re talking interfaces, you just have to mention Apogee. Easily among the best in the business, Apogee debuted one of the most gorgeous audio interfaces for home studios and those with minimal input requirements this past summer with the Duet 3. Alongside the brand’s best-in-class AD/DA conversion, the Duet 3 is as absolutely gorgeous sitting on your desktop as it is technologically superior to just about anything in its weight class:
Duet 3 includes on-board hardware DSP that powers the Symphony ECS Channel Strip for zero-latency recording with FX (Symphony ECS Channel Strip FX and native plugin sold separately). Tuned by Bob Clearmountain, the ECS Channel Strip features presets custom crafted by the legendary mixer so you can dial in a pro recording sound instantly. Ideal for music creation, voice recording, streaming and even gaming, creators can use Duet 3 on their Mac or Windows workstations in a home studio or on the go.
If you’re looking to splurge a little bit this year for yourself or a really lucky music maker on your list, look no further than the Apogee Duet 3. Otherwise, score one of the more affordable previous-generation models listed below that are nearly as amazing.
Stocking stuffers, controllers, and more…
We aren’t done just yet – you’ll find a list of other options in the list below, ranging from stocking stuffers to more pricey options that might not be the newest products on the market, but still would be welcomed additions to just about any audio geek, or musician’s kit:
- Moleskine Art Music Notebook $20
- Ibanez Quick Access Multi Tool $20
- Ernie Ball Musician’s Tool Kit $40
- Fender Custom Shop Guitar Tools $60
- Nulaxy Laptop Stand $23
- Hercules DG400BB Laptop Stand $70
- Numark Laptop Stand Pro $74+
- Odyssey DJ Gear Stand $120+
- Novation Launchpad Pro MK3 $315
- Novation Launchpad X $170
- Novation Launchpad Mini MK3 $110
If you are thinking about going with a MIDI controller keyboard, here are some price drops you’ll want to browse through first:
- Alesis Qmini Portable 32 Key USB $49 (Reg. $59)
- Alesis V-Mini 25 Key USB $58 (Reg. $79)
- Alesis V25 25 Key USB $89 (Reg. $109)
- AKAI Professional MPK Mini Play $119 (Reg. $139+)
- Alesis Q88 MKII 88 Key USB $189 (Reg. $229)
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