Product Type: Stagg guitars and bass guitars
Newest Review: ... guitarist to use. The capo that I have been using on a regular basis for the past ten or so years is this one. The Gear SCMP-F Capo Flat... more
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Gear SCPM-F Capo Flat
Member Name: herumi
Gear SCPM-F Capo Flat
Advantages: Low price, quick and easy to attach
Disadvantages: Not the highest quality capo out there and can be a bit fiddly to adjust
I bought my guitar about 10 years ago, having decided to take up a new instrument. I opted for the guitar primarily because it was cheap- my classical model cost just £40- and I figured it would be relatively easy to teach myself. Since then, I've been playing it on and off- it's a great instrument to just pick up and put down whenever the mood takes you. The other advantage of playing classical guitar is that you don't need a lot of expensive equipment, and can get by with as many or few extras as you want, really. Having got by for years with nothing but my trusty guitar, I finally decided to buy a capo a few months ago.
I had no idea what to expect when looking up capos on Amazon, but was pleased to find that they were pretty inexpensive- the vast majority were under £20, and there were several for just a few pounds. I knew I would need a flat capo for my classical guitar, but had no idea whether to go for an expensive metal clippy one, or one of the dirt cheap wraparound ones. In the end, I decided on the latter- not being a serious guitarist, I was more than happy to get a very basic model, as long as it did the job and didn't fall apart on me too quickly! This Stagg capo cost just £1.99.
When the capo arrived, my lack of knowledge became glaringly obvious- I had no idea how to put it on! After a couple of false starts (including trying to put it on upside down!), I eventually figured it out. The rubber pad on the underside of the notched metal bit (see pic) is designed to sit against the strings, while the thick fabric strap wraps around the fretboard and the attached T-shaped metal bar then slots into one of the notches on top. It's a lot simpler than it sounds, and once you get the hang of it, it's very quick to put it on. It also works quite effectively- once on, it stays put.
There are, however, a couple of drawbacks to this capo. The first is that the strap has to be frequently readjusted to ensure you get a very tight fit against the strings- if it's not tight enough, the guitar sounds muted, buzzes and is out of tune. Because the fretboard is wider at the top, moving it down several frets means that it will become loose and need to be tightened up to get the best sound. Having several notches to clip the T-bar into sounds like a good idea, but I find that it's more effective to just tighten up the strap. Unfortunately, this isn't easy when the capo's on, so I have to unclip it first and then estimate the adjustment needed to get the perfect fit for each fret. On the plus side, the simple buckle on the strap makes adjusting it fairly straightforward.
The other downside is that the capo doesn't seem particularly hardy or durable. In the few months that I've been using it, it's become slightly curved, making it harder to get an even pressure on all the strings when it's in place. The only way around this is to ensure that it fits very tightly, but I suspect having to wrestle it forcefully into place might just be making the problem worse.
While I can't foresee this capo having a particularly long lifespan, I've been happy with it overall- it does the job and, despite a couple of niggles, is well worth its low price. I'd recommend this to anyone who just wants a capo for light use, although I don't think it would be suitable for a serious guitarist.
Summary: It does the job for a bargain price, but its lack of durability lets it down.
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