Ultex Jazz III Review
The Ultex Jazz III could be considered somewhat of a game-changer for many guitarists. Since the introduction of the regular Jazz III plectrum, there has been a small influx of Jazz 3 variations every year. This Ultex Jazz iii is no exception. Here I’m gonna outline how I found this guitar pick to be with regards to some factors such as material, feel, sound, etc. Remember, this is my personal opinion and I always urge readers to try as many guitar picks as possible. Even if I don’t rate a plectrum highly, it might still be good for you. What is good for me might not be for you and vice versa so keep that in mind when reading this guitar pick review.
This pick is made from the “Ultex” material and for obvious reasons, is why the pick is called the Ultex. There are numerous names for the material such as Ultem however, it essentially refers to this material. It is a lot more of a durable material when compared to something like Tortex or Nylon. It’s a very lightweight material whilst being exceptionally sturdy.
I tend to find this picks produces a brighter sound both on the treble strings as well as the bass strings. There’s definitely a bit more spank on the higher end. Especially when you compare to other materials such as Nylon. The tip of the Ultex Jazz 3 is also slightly more rounded than the original red and black Jazz III’s. I don’t think it affects the sound some much as it does the feel.
Whilst the pick is incredibly lightweight, I tend to find it feels kind of hollow. It is quite hard to explain what I mean here but I think when you pick it up and try a few scales out you’ll notice what I mean by Its hollowness. This Hollow feel that I speak of is not translated into the sound but only feel. It is really the factor that makes me not prefer this Jazz III to the Nylon or Tortex counterparts. I think this is the tradeoff for having a durable pick such as this one. The thing that I find most funny about it is that the lighter gauge Ultex picks don’t give me this feeling. I think this being a thicker pick made out of this specific material gives this particular sensation
As I mentioned above, the tip is slightly less rounded when compared to other Jazz III picks which makes the pick glide off the strings easier. However, I feel I’m not able to articulate my single note or lead playing with this rounder tip.
The grip is pretty good on this plectrum. On each side of the pick, there are raised Jim Dunlop logos which definitely help the pick stay in your fingers. I do find that the sweatier my hands get the more these picks tend to slip. Even despite its raised guitar pick grip surface. It won’t provide nearly as much grip as a Max-grip option for example. However, it is definitely not slippery. So all in all I’d say it’s definitely on the grippier side.
Gauge (Thickness) and Variations
The Ultex Jazz III is available in two Gauges. The first one that came out and possibly the most popular one, is the 1.38 “Transparent Yellow” one. And the other option is the 2.0mm black Ultex Jazz III. Whilst similar materials, they actually feel and play totally different. However, both gauges sound pretty similar to one another. I actually prefer the feel of the heavier 2.0mm gauge. However, the most used is probably 1.38mm gauge.
Whilst Jim Dunlop has plenty Ultex picks in regular shapes, they currently only offer the Ultex in these two and I believe a John Petrucci signature.
Best Used For?
As with most Jazz III picks, the Ultex is best used for lead guitar or single note picking. But you can use it for absolutely anything. I know quite a lot of guitar players that use them for acoustic guitar for the simple fact that the notes sound exceptionally pronounced. I tried the Ultex Jazz iii on my acoustic recently and really enjoyed the sound.
Tortex vs Ultex?
There is quite a lot of question surrounding the comparison of these two pick materials. For that reason, I compared Tortex vs Ultex which can be read by clicking the link.