The Best Guitar Capos

Guitar Capos
best overall rating
  • Quick on and off action
  • Excellent balance across all frets
  • No string buzzing
  • Easily fits on the headstock when not in use
premium choice rating
  • Easy one-handed on and off operation
  • Built to last
  • Excellent quality but affordable
  • Ideal for slim-neck guitars
great value rating
  • Lightweight and strong
  • Easily parks away on the headstock when not in use
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Quick and easy one-handed operation

A guitar cap is not an essential accessory – like pickups, tuners, or strings – but having one on hand can give you the option to play some cool tones.

The vast selection of styles and brands on the market can be a daunting thing for a new capo buyer, which is where we step in with our useful review that lists the best guitar capos you can buy today. We came up with this list after countless hours of research – which includes talking to guitarists, analyzing user ratings, and even trying a few ourselves. However, let’s begin this guide by learning a few things about a capo.

What is a Guitar Capo?

If you’re a beginner guitarist, it is highly likely you don’t even know what a capo is or how to use it.

A capo is a tool clamped onto the guitar strings to shorten the length of the fretboard. This reduces the length number of playable frets and raises the key of the guitar by one and a half steps for every playable fret.

A typical capo will cover all the strings of the guitar, but you can find ones that will allow you to skip the strings you want to leave at full-length.

Capos allow you to play your instrument in a different key without having to change guitars. They are available for both acoustic and electric guitars, but more commonly used by acoustic guitarists. Capos can also be used on Ukuleles and bass guitars. This tool is very popular with professional guitarists and musicians because it allows them to play some pretty awesome pitches.

The Top Guitar Capos

Product PhotoGuitar and RatingDescriptionCheck Price & Read User Reviews
+ GUITARX X3 Acoustic & Electric Guitar Capo

Overall Score: 5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

A high-quality professional-grade clamp capo with an excellent performance.

+ Shubb Deluxe Series S1 GC-30

Overall Score: 5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

An affordable cap with pro-level performance. It is built well with a fine finish

+ Kyser Quick-Change Acoustic Guitar Capo

Overall Score: 5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

An easy-to-use and long-lasting capo. Well-balanced across all frets and holds the tune well.

+ Nordic Essentials Deluxe Capo

Overall Score: 4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)

A simple but beautiful capo that works very well. You won’t regret getting one of these

+ Ernie Ball Axis Dual Radius

Overall Score: 4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)

A super lightweight and easy to use spring-action capo that fits well on the frets

+ Dunlop Acoustic Trigger Capo

Overall Score: 4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)

This capo fits well on the neck and applies just the right amount of tension.

+ Paige Original P6E

Overall Score: 4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)

A simple but high-quality and affordable capo that works on all kinds of guitars.

+ D’Addario NS Artist Classical Capo PW-CP-13 by Planet Waves

Overall Score: 4.9 out of 5 stars (4.9 / 5)

This spring capo applies just the right amount of pressure and is easy to operate with one hand

GUITARX X3 Acoustic & Electric Guitar Capo

GUITARX-X3-CapoThis spring-loaded quick-release capo is one of the best-selling and highest-rated guitar capos available for sale. The exceptionally high rating of the GUITARX X3 is fully justified! This beautiful chrome-plated capo is made with a durable but lightweight zinc alloy commonly used in the aircraft industry.

It is a high performance and reliable capo that is very easy to install and remove. Simply squeeze the handle to open the spring-loaded and padded tong and slide it over the strings at the fret position you want to set it. The spring-loaded action is set just right, allowing the capo to stay firmly in place and maintain the tune across the fingerboard.

This should be a top consideration for anyone looking to buy this accessory. It is super reliable, fits any guitar, and will last forever.

Shubb Deluxe Series S1 GC-30

Shubb capos are a hit with the pros and for a good reason. They are built right, reliable, durable, easy-to-use, and they look stylish.

The stylish GC-30 is made from stainless steel with an adjustable lever that removes the need to reset the pressure every time you use it. Just set the screw to the desired pressure, and it stays that way until you re-adjust it. Installing and removing it is made very easy with the flipping lever and a spring-loaded screw-operated roller mechanism that ensures a smooth operation of the clamp.

The lever is padded with a proprietary rubber that emulates the feel of your finger. This ensures that the strings are well protected, and the instrument remains in tune across the fretboard.
The massive number of positive feedback and its favorable position with professional musicians earns it a place on our best capos list.

Kyser Quick-Change Acoustic Guitar Capo

Kyser-Quick-Change-Acoustic-Guitar-CapoKyser’s quick-change capo is an extravagant guitar capo designed and made in the USA to the highest quality. The quality of the Kyser is immediately apparent right from the packaging it arrives in.

Made from high-grade aluminum, this clamp capo is lightweight but very strong and durable. A steel spring allows for the clamp to open and close very easily and smoothly, which ensures a quick on and off action with the use of only one hand. And when you’re don’t need it, it easily parks on the headstock. This model is designed for acoustic guitars with six strings, but it also works excellently on electric guitars.

With over 20 colors to choose from, you’re sure to find one that matches the color of your guitar’s neck or your favorite color.

We love it because it works exceptionally well, is exceptionally easy to use, and it is super stylish.

Nordic Essentials Deluxe Capo

Nordic-Essentials-Deluxe-CapoThis clamp capo is solid, reliable, and a best-seller with exceptionally favorable ratings from pros and amateurs alike.

This premium model works well with all string instruments with a neck. It is made with a premium and lightweight zinc alloy that is very durable. It uses a spring action lever to clamp the silicone-padded lever onto the neck securely while maintaining the tune. It can fit 6 to 12-string instruments.

It is designed to operate with just one hand easily and packs easily on the instrument’s headstock when you don’t need it. The cherry on top is a beautiful carrying pouch that allows you to stow it away safely when you travel.

This trigger capo comes in many colors and is backed with a lifetime warranty. You really can’t lose with this one.

Ernie Ball Axis Dual Radius

Ernie-Ball-Axis-Dual-RadiusThis is a super easy capo to fit and remove from a guitar neck. It is a beautiful but simple spring-loaded trigger action capo with a double-radius lever that can fit perfectly on guitars with a flat or curved fingerboard. This perfect fit eliminates string-buzz and ensures the guitar stays in tune.

The Ernie Ball Axis P09600 is made from a durable but lightweight aluminum with a protective padding made from molded rubber. This model will look good on any electric or acoustic guitar with 6 or 7 strings on the fretboard. However, we’ve seen it used successfully on 12-string Taylors, so it should work on instruments with more than 7 strings.

You can get it in gold, bronze, silver, or black finish – plenty to satisfy any taste.

Dunlop Acoustic Trigger Capo

Dunlop-Acoustic-Trigger-CapoThis easy-to-use trigger capo is made from aircraft-grade aluminum – making it durable and lightweight. This fits easily on a guitar with a curved fretboard and maintains the same loudness and sound clarity you get from playing your instrument without a capo.

A single squeeze with one hand attaches or removes the spring-loaded and well-padded grip. A padded and ergonomic handle ensures maximum comfort when operating the device.

This device works well on 6 to 12-string acoustic and electric guitars.

Paige Original P6E

Paige-Original-P6EWe promise you this device isn’t a torture tool brought back to life from the 18th century. It is a fine capo with a unique design that allows you to adjust the pressure to your liking.

The unit slides smoothly onto the neck of the guitar, and you turn the screw to tighten it to the right pressure. The screw tensioning system gives you precision control over the pressure applied evenly across the 6 strings. The design and perfect fit help eliminate buzzing and ensure the instrument stays in tune when played with the capo attached.

The P6E is made from premium and lightweight materials with a protective rubber padding on the grips. You can’t go wrong with this high-quality guitar capo for 6-string electric and acoustic guitars.

D’Addario NS Artist Classical Capo PW-CP-13 by Planet Waves

D’Addario-NS-Artist-Classical-CapoThis capo is designed with the classical player in mind. It is a beautiful and high-quality clamp capo designed to fit comfortably on guitars of any neck profile.

The padded grips clamp securely to the neck – distributing an even tension across the fretboard for a buzz-free action. The tension is held in place and finely adjusted using the pressure adjustment spring-loaded screw. This capo maintains the tune perfectly.

The Artist Classic is made from a strong but lightweight aluminum typically used in the aircraft industry. It is built to last and will survive any abuse you can throw at it. The built-in pick holder is a bonus and something most guitarists will appreciate.

As a classical guitarist, this is the perfect trigger capo for you, and a worthy inclusion on our list of the best capos.

The Various Types (Styles) of Guitar Capos

Let’s take a quick look at the different styles of guitar capos and what sets them apart.

Clamp or Trigger

This is by far the most widely available style on the market. As the name suggests, it is a simple tool with grips (jaw) that clamp onto the neck of the guitar. The tension or pressure is often applied using a spring-loaded mechanism.

This simple capo often opens and closes by the user squeezing a handle to open the grips and releasing the handle to close it. A good clamp capo will have a strong spring to apply the right pressure to keep the grips firmly secured to the guitar. They are often referred to as quick-action capos because they can quickly be clamped on or taken off with just one hand.

One disadvantage of this style of capo is that you can’t adjust the tension or pressure on most of them. However, there are a few that are adjustable.

The Shubb Style

Shubb has a unique design that utilizes a third lever pushes a second arm under the neck of the guitar to tighten the grip. You can adjust the tension or pressure by turning the screw to apply just the right amount of pressure needed to fret the strings. This style of capo has the least impact on the guitar’s tune and produces no buzz.

The disadvantage of this type of capo is that you need to fix and remove it with both hands.

Yoke-Style Capo

This is the style highlighted by the Paige model we reviewed above. It completely wraps around the neck of the guitar, and a screw pushes a padded arm against the back of the neck to apply the pressure required to hold it in place.

The screw is also used to finetune the tension to apply just the right amount of pressure required. This is a well-balanced capo that evenly distributes the pressure evenly across the strings, maintaining the guitar’s tune and tone. This style is also great when you need to change pitch mid-tune.

The disadvantage with this style of capo is that it requires two hands to attach it to or take it off the neck.

Factors to Consider Before Buying a Capo

A capo is one of the most straightforward guitar accessories to buy. You don’t have to grapple with so many technical specifications like you do when buying an amp or pickup. However, this does not mean that you should buy the first capo you come across.

Just like any accessory, there are some very mediocre stuff out there, and you will end up getting burned if you don’t know what to look out for. The next couple of paragraphs give you a few tips to apply when buying a guitar capo.

A high-quality capo should be made using a durable material like aluminum or an alloy of zinc. Bronze and stainless steel are also acceptable materials. The materials should be lightweight because you don’t want to be adding too much weight to your guitar when playing. The basic rule is to steer clear of capos made from plastic.

The best capos should have adjustable pressure or tension. Look for one that allows you to do this, typically with a spring-loaded screw mechanism or some other contraption. This is important because you want to be able to control the tension it exerts on your strings. Too much tension can damage your guitar or strings, and too little pressure will result in buzzing and just poor-quality tones.

You should get a capo with padded grips to protect the strings. Pads are typically made from rubber, but silicone padding is becoming very common nowadays. Padding helps prevent slipping when the device is attached to the guitar. You want a grip that has padding on both levers to prevent damage to the finish on your guitar’s neck and the fretboard and strings.

Our Final Thoughts

We hope our list and research has been helpful to you and that you find a top guitar capo that suits your needs and playing style. Don’t forget to let us know what you think by leaving a comment below. We appreciate the suggestions we get from all our readers, so let’s hear from you.

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