Thalia Blue Abalone Capo and Rosewood Guitar Picks Review
Thalia Capos is all about boutique designs with stunning aesthetics and customisation. Today we’ll have a look at their brushed black Blue Abalone capo ($75 USD) and Thalia Santos Rosewood Guitar Pick Sampler ($19 USD). We’ll cover the capos first and get into the picks later in the article. Don’t forget, there’s loads more where this came from in our Best Guitar Tech compilation listing (Thalia is on there too!).
Why the big price tag?
Thalia capos, as the price tag suggests, are not your average capos. Part of the price is due to the beautiful designs with high quality materials. The capos are really built like a tank. They can also be customised in terms of materials, designs and lettering. The other side of the cost equation is the improvements in design. Their capos ship with a variety of fretpads for better performance for different instruments. Furthermore, the lever position allows you to put the capo on with your fretting hand.
I should note, due to the lever’s resistance, I still found it simpler to do it with two hands.
Customised performance for different guitars
Two types of fretpads ship with Thalia capos. The standard tension pads are for use with six-string guitars, while the high tension pads are for 12-string guitars, mandolins, ukuleles and thin neck guitars. Thalia also offer partial pads which allow you to capo three strings and leave the others open. You have to order those separately though.
Thalia ships several versions of the two key pad types, allowing you to customise the fretpad to your guitar’s radius. This reduces the impact on your tuning when applying the capo. The Thalia capo didn’t preserve my guitar’s tuning flawlessly, but it was certainly a vast improvement over using a regular capo.
Bright and warm guitar pick tone
Thalia offer customisable pick orders, varying the wood types, thickness and designs. We tried out the Thalia Santos Rosewood Guitar Picks sampler, which has four pick shapes. These are the (smallest to largest) Jazz, J3XL, Standard and Tri-Pick. A 0.9mm and 1.4mm version of each pick is included.
Being more rigid than a nylon pick, the wooden picks produce a brighter and more defined sound. The great thing about the wood build is that it also retains a stunning warm tone. The tonal difference is quite noticeable on electric guitar, but the impact on an acoustic is even more pronounced.
Suited to softer music styles
I try out each of the eight pick types in the demo video above, so you can see how they perform versus a nylon pick. Acoustic, folk and other softer styles of music are a natural fit for Thalia’s picks. If you’re a hard-hitting rocker, then I’d steer clear though. The wood is less durable than nylon, and players that dig in heavily will wear them down fairly quickly. That said, regardless of your playing style, they would be a great tool in the studio to get a brighter, clearer tone in the soft sections. It’s also worth mentioning, like the Thalia capos, the aesthetics of the picks are top notch. The wood grain is just gorgeous.
The Thalia capo and picks verdict
The Thalia capo introduces several design improvements that increase performance well above regular capos. This alone wouldn’t justify the price tag, but if you really value aesthetics, then picking one up is worth it. I thought the capos were gaudy when I looked at the photos online, but in person they are a real work of art. The Rosewood Guitar Picks are really something as well. Anyone who wants to increase the clarity of their tone while retaining warmth could benefit from using Thalia picks, just as long as they don’t mind the reduced durability.