Clayton Ultem Standard Picks, 12-pack (1.07mm) Reviews5.0/5.0 based on 1 customer review
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from Prescott, AZ
November 11, 2012Music Background:
Hobbyist, 30+ years
Amazingly Unique SoundI've tried just about every pick on the market, and absolutely nothing sounds anything like this... It's hard to describe, but I'm using the .72 mm on my acoustic 6 string (with ultra-light 80/20 strings) and they have a very ringy sound with a lot of very high overtones that in some ways resembles a 12 string guitar. Compared to cellulose or the other materials like delrin, acetal polymer, tortex or nylon, these picks give me much better definition, and a beautiful crystal clear sound. Bass is generally not as promenent as other picks, while highs are greatly enhanced, giving what I feel is a much more well balanced spectrum of sound. Of course this may not be to everyone's taste, but you definitely have to try these and see what you think. There are just a few other things you will need to know. First, unlike other picks, these are very inconsistent in their sound. I found that about half of the picks in a typical 12-pack sound dead, and no better than a celluloid... but the others sound as described above. Another weird thing is that they only sound good when played on one side... when you turn them over, they sound dead. So make sure you try a strum with each side of the pick, to see if you have a good one or not... I test them and then chuck the dead picks in the trash and mark the good ones with a dot on the good side. It may sound like a hassle but it's SOOO worth it. Nobody knows what these picks are made of, but clearly it's something quite unusual... it resembles cured epoxy resin as used in printed circuit boards... but just the resin... there are no fiberglass fibers. The pick feels very good in the hand, and they last a very long time... I have over 100 hours on one, and it's almost like new. It's weird, because Clayton isn't known for top quality picks... these appear to be just punched out of a sheet of the material... and the edges are completely square and not rounded or polished at all. Yet they work beautifully... and if you try the Dunlop Ultex picks, which looks like they are made from the same stuff, but they have nicely rounded and polished edges, they all sound dead and nothing like these Claytons. Maybe Clayton just got lucky... but these are the only picks I use now. I play folk, mostly strumming, but they also sound fantastic with individual picked notes... especially on the higher plain-steel stings.