John Mayer's Guitar Rig

John Mayer's Guitar Rig

John Mayer is a modern guitar hero. His unmistakably smooth tone, blues-inspired solos and soulful voice combine to form an original and highly-recognisable sound; yielding a large, loyal following. And it’s perhaps no surprise that some of Mayer’s biggest fans, particularly guitar players, are fastidious about capturing his sound — constantly on the search for everything he uses in his rig!

While this page encompasses a lot of gear that John Mayer has been photographed using and even spoken about, a few items here are just similar to pieces of equipment that he's used.

John Mayer’s Guitars

It’s hard to mention all of John Mayer’s guitars, as he’s used various instruments throughout his 20+ year career. However, he is perhaps most synonymous with the classic s-type electric guitar, and in 2017, Mayer joined forces with PRS to develop a signature model heavily based on this timeless design — the Silver Sky.

With an elegant double-cutaway body, a trio of single-coil pickups and a traditional 6-screw tremolo; the PRS Silver Sky blends the vintage warmth and familiarity of one of John’s favourite mid-’60s electric guitars with the finesse of a brand-new instrument. It sports a contemporary, elegant look that’s befitting of a 21st Century guitar icon like Mayer.

John also has a signature acoustic guitar with Martin — the OMJM. This electrified model is just about as classy as an acoustic can get without going overboard. It’s a tasteful ‘orchestra’ guitar that possesses all of the versatility required for the diverse musical styles that Mayer fearlessly moves between.

John Mayer’s Amps

Mayer has played just about every mythical guitar amp you can think of, most notably the highly-desirable Dumble Super Overdrive. He owns a couple of these, and still uses them on tour despite their rarity and value. John has also previously used high-end valve amps from Two Rock, while classic Fender combos and Marshall Plexis have been employed on occasion in the studio.

John Mayer’s Pedals

The most intriguing element of John Mayer’s guitar rig, without doubt, is his pedalboard! Using a unique mix of both old-school and modern effects pedals, Mayer’s hybrid analogue/digital setup gives him an incredible amount of sonic flexibility. With dozens of stompboxes in his live rig, John operates a large pedal switcher to easily control his collection. After all, he’s singing and playing guitar!

One of the more famous pedals John Mayer is known to use is the “Holy Grail” Klon Centaur overdrive. Renowned for its rich and “transparent” sound, this coveted device is a key ingredient for Mayer when it comes to some of his hotter lead tones, which he’s described as “the kindest, most satisfying distortion”. He also makes regular use of Ibanez Tube Screamers, particularly the TS-10, and uses an abundance of other stompboxes to embellish his distinctive tone. We simply can’t name them all!