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View Full Version : Dunlop Ultex pick


oldrocker
07-03-2008, 07:43 PM
I've tried about every pick made from hand made buffalo horn to those fancy tortise-like bluegrass picks that cost $20 or $30 each. I haven't found a pick that I liked everything about it. About my favorite shape and favorite sounding pick continues to be the Fender heavy (and similar clones) and Dunlop Tortex but the Fenders wear out and get to where they start sounding like a saw against your strings and you have to throw them away, and the Tortex last and feel good but they have somewhat of a softer sound than the Fenders.

A while back I ordered some new strings and added some of these Dunlop Ultex picks just to try them out. Wow! I love them. They have the big crisp bold yet smooth sound, even better sound than the Fender-type, but they are made of a very hard material so the edges stay rounded and they just slide along the strings, slick and fast as can be. If you've had the same pick dissatisfaction as me, try these. I'll try some different sizes but I really like this one for acoustic guitar.

http://i58.photobucket.com/albums/g248/dwphd/IMG_2448.jpg

guitarstrmr
07-03-2008, 08:11 PM
If you like the Dunlops, you ought to try the Clayton Ultem picks. They're very similar to the Dunlop, but there's something about them that I like better than Dunlops. They're just a tad bit larger than the Dunlop, but not much. Looks like very similar material. I like the .72mm.

Made In Canada
07-03-2008, 08:13 PM
Very nice picks indeed.

I'll assume you've tried Red bear Tortis, but I think anyone who likes Ultex would love them. But costwise....it's hard to beat Dunlop Ultex and/or Tortex.

oldrocker
07-03-2008, 08:20 PM
Very nice picks indeed.

I'll assume you've tried Red bear Tortis, but I think anyone who likes Ultex would love them. But costwise....it's hard to beat Dunlop Ultex and/or Tortex.

Yes I have a couple that just sit in my guitar case along with the others. Somehow the shape and the way they feel against the strings just doesn't work very well for me.

oldrocker
07-03-2008, 08:34 PM
If you like the Dunlops, you ought to try the Clayton Ultem picks. They're very similar to the Dunlop, but there's something about them that I like better than Dunlops. They're just a tad bit larger than the Dunlop, but not much. Looks like very similar material. I like the .72mm.

Thanks guitarstrmr...That's one pick I haven't tried and I'll order some.

bigbjfan
07-03-2008, 09:03 PM
About 2 months ago, I purchased these dunlop ultex and are the best for me so far. I'm just figuring which thickness now.

scadgrad
07-03-2008, 09:53 PM
I was digging those Ultex picks myself until I started breaking the fool out of them. After the third one broke, I started looking again. I've ditched them and went to the Gator grip by Dunlop which sounds great on the Martins, but not as good on the Taylor; weird huh? Still using the standard dunlop on the Taylor.

oldrocker
07-03-2008, 10:44 PM
I was digging those Ultex picks myself until I started breaking the fool out of them. After the third one broke, I started looking again. I've ditched them and went to the Gator grip by Dunlop which sounds great on the Martins, but not as good on the Taylor; weird huh? Still using the standard dunlop on the Taylor.

That is weird. I can't imagine breaking one like I use. How thick were you going? Years ago I would only use medium picks until I learned that I had better control with thicker ones. I don't think you could break 1mm or thicker.

yardism
07-03-2008, 11:01 PM
I can't imagine breaking an Ultex. I have not picked up another pick since I first tried Dunlop Ultex. That was 4 years ago.

re17
07-04-2008, 12:08 AM
The Clayton Ultems, as others have said, are just as good as the Dunlop Ultexes, and for my money just as durable too. They also come in a great intermediate .80mm thickness which the Ultexes don't. I used to really like both the Ultems and the Ultexes, only I now feel that they give a sound that's slightly too bright when used on my Taylors, and I've reverted to Dunlop Tortex for a slightly warmer sound.

Richard

Big Bad Bill
07-04-2008, 12:46 AM
I searched around for the perfect pick for me, and after trying pretty much everything there is (including Red Bear Tortis) someone gave me an large Ultex triangle pick, and I have been completely hooked since.

I have not found another pick that sounds as good as the Ultex.

JimLin
07-04-2008, 05:31 AM
I've been using 1.0 and .73 Ultex for several years now and like 'em better than anything else -- I'll have to revisit the Clayton picks. I tried some several years ago and like them ...

I have a couple of Tortis picks and while I like them, I just can't bring myself to buy more at $25 each to keep experimenting with differerent gauges and shapes. It may have more to do with familiarity than anything else, but I actually prefer the Ultex ... and it's about 1/100th of the price.

Eugenius
07-04-2008, 07:21 AM
The Clayton Ultems, as others have said, are just as good as the Dunlop Ultexes, and for my money just as durable too. They also come in a great intermediate .80mm thickness which the Ultexes don't. I used to really like both the Ultems and the Ultexes, only I now feel that they give a sound that's slightly too bright when used on my Taylors, and I've reverted to Dunlop Tortex for a slightly warmer sound.

Richard

+1 one on the Clayton's, they sound and feel amazing. I use the large triangular picks, anywhere from .38 to .80 and sometimes 1mm.

The .38 and .45 are my favourite, and very very durable.

bryankimsey
07-04-2008, 07:43 AM
I used real TS for 15 years from 1980-95 (the same two picks, too), then Ultems since about 1995, and added Ultrex in 1997. I use Red Bear today as my playing pick and the two gold picks as "carry in my pocket" picks.

Note that all of these picks will warp- the Ultems were notortious for that for several years there- and all can be easily beveled or shaped or polished to suit your preference.

Robert
07-04-2008, 07:59 AM
If you like the Dunlops, you ought to try the Clayton Ultem picks. They're very similar to the Dunlop, but there's something about them that I like better than Dunlops. They're just a tad bit larger than the Dunlop, but not much. Looks like very similar material. I like the .72mm.

I use both, great picks!

iDavid
07-04-2008, 08:42 AM
I've been coming back to Ultex 1.0 for years now, sometimes down to a 7.3 or up to a 1.4.

How much different is the feel or sound of the Red Bear?

I would like to try the Red Bea with similar specs as the 1.0 Ultex

Do you guys get them online... where?

peace,

david

scadgrad
07-04-2008, 10:12 AM
I believe they were .92s or .7 at the very lightest os not exactly light picks. I think it has a lot to do with how they were striking the strings. I noticed on the last one I used that it was starting to get nicks and grooves before I retired it. As a self-taught guy, my technique is pretty much all over the place and I'm guilty of playing pretty hard so that may have a lot to do with it.

RogerC
07-04-2008, 04:08 PM
I've been using the Ultex for a couple of years now and have yet to find anything I like better (including Wegens). I've not tried a Tortis, but as brittle as they are, I can't imagine spending that kinda money on a pick. The Ultex give me the best sound and playability.

bryankimsey
07-04-2008, 06:24 PM
I can't imagine spending that kinda money on a pick.

The pick is the last part of the tone chain. Personally, I consider the pick as more important than strings. At $20 each, that's 3 set of strings or 1.5 sets of Elixirs. That many strings would last 3 weeks to 8 months, but I have Tortis picks from 6 years ago, still going strong, and have never broken or lost one. I know that to many people a pick is a pick is a pick, but to a flatpicker, the pick is a VERY important piece of equipment.

Made In Canada
07-04-2008, 06:55 PM
The Ultex and Red Bear Tortis are very similiar tonewise. I think the Tortis slides off the strings a little smoother and has less "click". I also like the feel of the Tortis to my fingers a little better. I also can't see any signs that they won't last for years if I don't lose them.

I would defiinitely recommend the Ultex if someone is uncomfortable spending $20 on a Tortis.
Dunlop makes good picks, their Tortex and Nylons are nice also. For heavy straight strumming with a thinner pick I like a green Tortex or a tan Martin nylon.

iDavid
07-04-2008, 09:20 PM
I gunna order a Red Bear Tortis pick. Any suggestion of the cut of it...

Made In Canada
07-05-2008, 09:08 AM
My favorite are size B Mediums with a speed bevel.

I know Bryan Kimsey from a few posts above puts his own bevels on them. I'd shoot him an email,tell him what kind of pick you like and you could order it from him.

I hope you like them as much as I do :)

whamonkey
07-05-2008, 10:01 AM
Love the Ultex pics......pretty much the only ones I use now although I will grab a Clayton now and again.

devellis
07-05-2008, 02:10 PM
Another Ultex fan here. I use .73s on guitar and 1.0s on mandolin. Changing picks is a great way to alter the tone of a stringed instrument at minimial cost. Having said that, the above combinations are my favorite for feel and sound. I buy them by the dozens. They're cheap enough not to sweat if they're lost but they actually last forever if I don't accidentally drop them when I pull change out of my pocket.

KPV
07-05-2008, 03:55 PM
Never played with an Ultex before. All this hoopla persuaded me to add a 6-pack of the 1.0 size to an order I put in today.

KPV
07-10-2008, 11:02 AM
Wow!

That's a much bigger difference than I anticipated. I play mostly fingerstyle but when I grab for a pick now, it's gotta' be an Ultex. Thanks for the tip, these are awesome. :up:

james55
07-10-2008, 11:11 AM
Yep, purchased a 6 pack of the .73mm and tried one out last night. Great sound, but I like the Fender mediums and my red bear tortis pick, too.
It's cool that you can change guitar picks and get a little difference in your sound.