Disclaimer: This article could just as easily read as Micky’s most hated, but we’re sticking with worst. We’re also only going for large production stuff and not factoring in the sub $100 trash that barely counts as a guitar. A common theme will probably be “who the hell asked for this to be made?”
Today RMW’s going to run through some of the worst guitars ever made. Guitars that make you shake your head, look up at the sky, and ask “why?”. Guitars so hideous, so laden with useless features, and built with so little care, that one asks oneself, “what is the world coming to?”.
For this list I’ve selected 8 of our most hated guitars (if that makes sense). Share with us the worst guitar you’ve ever come across in the comments section below.
- Gibson Robot Tuned
We know, it’s almost cliche and lazy to put this in here, but as such it has to be.
Back in 2007 Gibson introduced a line of robotically tuned guitars. Unveiled with a lot of fan fare, the Gibson robotically tuned guitars have been garnering a lot of hate since they appeared on the market. While the robotics are undoubtedly impressive, the general feeling was one of bewilderment. Why would Gibson take an overpriced guitar, bolt on a bunch of unnecessary robotics that probably won’t work in 5 years, and then up the price?
Guitar tuners work just fine and most guitarists will agree, we’re sure, that tuning your guitar by hand is part of understanding your instrument and training your ears. No one asked for this Gibson, so why make it?!!
- Peavey AT-200
While Gibson Robot Tuned guitar will tune your guitar for you, the Peavey AT-200 can digitally change its turning so that what comes out of the amp is whatever you want it to be while the guitar itself remains in standard turning. Select drop d, open c, whatever feel you like!
While this might sound convenient to some, unless you play with your amp turned up to 11 at all times (even while practising in your bedroom) you will probably still hear the acoustic sounds of the guitar, which can make for a weird and unappealing sonic clash.
Combine this with the fact that most Peavey AT-200’s were badly built (bent necks, sharp frets, etc.) and you’ve got yourself one of the worst guitars ever made.
- Gibson Firebird X
Gibson’s Firebird X is another robot tuned guitar, but we’re giving it a special mention because of the bluetooth effects system that came with the Firebird X. This took the pointlessness to the next level, and the price along with it. With the guitar, Gibson provided a multi-effects pedal board that connected to the guitar via bluetooth. To select an effect one had to scroll endlessly through menus utilising a dazzling (and seemingly unnecessary) array of knobs and foot-switches.
And just to make the whole experience even more irritating, Gibson included a one-of-a-kind charger that undoubtedly cost an arm and a leg to replace. Oh, and the price for this monstrosity? A mere £3300 ($5500).
- Kramer Duke 6-String
Most guitar players agree that Steinberger guitars ain’t too pretty. So when Kramer made their own version of the Steinberger and it turned out even uglier than the original, we must, on some level, be impressed.
Made in the 80s, the Kramer Duke had an aluminium neck, a feature of most Kramer guitars at that time. While the Steinberger’s were super light, the aluminium neck of the Kramer made it feel like a ball and chain.
- Esteban Guitars
While the rest of this list focuses on a specific guitar, we’re going to take a moment to mention an entire range of guitars that, when considered together, constitute probably the worst acoustic guitar ever made. Introducing: Esteban Guitars.
Named after the Pittsburgh born Spanish guitar player of the same name, Esteban Guitars are without doubt some of the worst GSOs (Guitar Shaped Objects) ever made. They are flimsy, inexpensive, poorly constructed, and generic. Their one (and only) advantage is that they are cheap…oh, wait…nope, we told you we wouldn’t do that, they’re priced in the 100s and thus come under the same fair fire as all mid range guitars!
- Gibson Reverse Flying V
Look, I get it, if you’ve read this far you’re going to think we hate Gibson, but most all of us here own at least one Gibson. And we’re not opposed to the flying V in general either, but if we’re being honest they have made some bloody stupid guitars in their time, but the Reverse Flying V has got to be the most ridiculous of them all. While the guitar itself is of a relatively high-quality build, the Gibson Reverse Flying V just looks awful. Flying V shaped guitars are already a topic of intense debate among guitarists, why would Gibson thinking that reversing the V would make the situation any better?
It just screams “I don’t have much taste and I’m hoping my silly guitar will distract from the outline of a cucumber down my crotch being too obvious.”
- Kramer Gorky Park
East meets West in this cold war inspired piece of junk of a GSO. Named after a Russian glam rock band from the 80s, the guitar attempts to merge the imagery of the two cold war super powers and features a perfectly triangular body. Never mind how the guitar sounds, the Kramer Gorky Park is hideous.
8. Fender Telecousitcs/Stratocoustics
OK, so it’s seems Micky is the only one who’s touched these and he’s only played the Telecoustic and that was enough to know. The rep of the strat equivalent speaks for itself enough to bundle it in here. But, if anyone round Leeds has got one that they think will prove me wrong sure.
They sounded awful, they felt cheap and looked garbage. The price was also too high for low end garbage. Now, we know fender has actually put out some low end acoustics which they didn’t brand as squire, but at least they didn’t ask $500 for the thing.
Please don’t confuse this with the acoustasonic, from what we heard they’re actually not too bad.
And there you have it! 8 of the worst guitars we’ve ever come across. Think you’ve found a guitar even worse than these? Let us know in the comments section below. Or love one of these? To be honest we could’ve kept going. We expect we will be doing a commentors edition of this one.
Or if someone wants to just meme Adam Jensen with any of these monstrosities enjoy the suggestion.