In the world of guitar upgrades, tuners often don’t receive the attention they deserve. However, the Grover 135N Vintage Tuners are here to change that narrative. These tuners have garnered a reputation for their outstanding performance and reliability, and my review will dive into every aspect that makes them a standout choice for upgrading your instrument.

At a Glance

Grover 135N Vintage Tuners
Best Overall

Grover 135N Vintage Tuners

  • Intended Instrument: Guitar
  • Item Weight: 3.52 ounces
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 4.8 x 1.8 inches
  • Configuration: 3+3
  • Finish: Nickel
  • Gear Ratio: 14:1
  • Peg Diameter: 0.390″ (peg hole)

Brian's Take: These are some of my favorite tuning machines, and they're well-suited to Les Paul guitars. While a bit less universally suited to most players because of trickier installation, the Grover 135N vintage tuners look great and function well. If you're looking for stability, control, and style, these are a solid option to consider. Plus, they feel great in your hand!

Pros
  • Stability
  • Control
  • Aesthetics
Cons
  • A bit more difficult to install
  • Slightly lower gear ratio

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Installation

The installation of the Grover 135N Vintage Tuners might require a bit more effort than a simple plug-and-play process. My experience with them was that they demanded the removal of existing bushings and reaming out the headstock holes, so a bit more complicated. While not a task for the faint of heart, the reward is substantial. Engaging a professional luthier for this installation might be wise unless you’re comfortable with specialized tools and techniques.

Stability

Tuning stability is where the Grover 135N tuners shine brightly. I give them high praise for their ability to hold tuning with remarkable precision. From electric guitars to mandolins, players have reported a substantial improvement in tuning consistency. This newfound stability enhances the overall playing experience and minimizes frustration during performances and recording sessions.

Control

With a gear ratio of 14:1, the Grover 135N tuners strike a balance between responsiveness and accuracy. This gear ratio allows for smooth and precise tuning adjustments, ensuring that fine-tuning your strings becomes a seamless process. Whether you’re bending notes or shifting between alternate tunings, these tuners provide the control you need.

And let’s not forget how good they feel! They fit the fingers so perfectly and, I know this is weird to say but, they are actually a pleasure to use and touch. They just have that perfect feel that I know you’ll love.

Weight

While not a heavily discussed topic in online reviews, it’s worth noting that the Grover 135N Vintage Tuners strike a good balance between durability and weight. The construction and materials used ensure they don’t add excessive weight to your instrument, allowing for comfortable playability.

Appearance

The vintage aesthetic of the Grover 135N tuners is one of my favorite aspects of this product. The nickel finish exudes a classic vibe that complements a wide range of guitar styles. The tulip-style plastic buttons add a touch of nostalgia while maintaining functionality. These tuners not only enhance your instrument’s performance but also contribute to its overall visual appeal.

Are the Grover 135N Vintage Tuners Right for You?

Deciding whether the Grover 135N Vintage Tuners are the right choice for you depends on your specific needs, preferences, and playing style. These tuners offer a unique blend of features that cater to certain types of players and guitars. Here’s a breakdown of who these tuners are ideal for and what kind of guitars they pair well with:

  1. Experienced Players and DIY Enthusiasts: If you’re comfortable with intricate installations and have some experience with specialized tools, these tuners can be a rewarding upgrade. However, if you’re not confident in your installation skills, seeking the help of a professional luthier is advisable.
  2. Players Seeking Enhanced Tuning Stability: If you’ve struggled with tuning inconsistencies in the past, the Grover 135N tuners could be a game-changer. They are designed to hold tuning with precision, making them an excellent choice for musicians who demand consistent tuning during performances and recording.
  3. Vintage Aesthetics Enthusiasts: If you appreciate the vintage look and feel of your instrument, the Grover 135N tuners will likely appeal to you. Their nickel finish and tulip-style plastic buttons add a touch of classic charm that complements a variety of guitar styles.

What Kind of Guitars Do They Go Well With?

  1. Electric Guitars: These tuners are well-suited for electric guitars of various styles, adding a classic appearance and stability to your instrument’s tuning system.
  2. Acoustic Guitars: If you have an acoustic guitar with a vintage design, the Grover 135N tuners can enhance its overall aesthetic while improving tuning accuracy.
  3. Archtop Guitars: Guitars with archtop designs often have a classic and elegant look. The vintage aesthetics of these tuners can be a great match for archtop guitars, contributing to their visual appeal.

What Kind of Guitars Would These Tuners Fit the Appearance Of?

  1. Les Paul-Style Guitars: While the post acknowledges other options for Les Paul guitars, the Grover 135N tuners could be an excellent fit. The vintage look aligns well with the classic design of Les Paul instruments.
  2. Hollow Body Guitars: If you own a hollow body guitar, these tuners could enhance its appearance with their nostalgic style and nickel finish.

Final Thoughts

The Grover 135N Vintage Tuners have earned their place among the top choices for upgrading your guitar’s tuning system. While installation might require some specialized skills or professional assistance, the benefits in tuning stability, control, and appearance are substantial.

With a good gear ratio, these tuners make tuning adjustments a breeze, ensuring you spend more time playing and less time tuning. If you’re ready to elevate your playing experience and bid farewell to tuning woes, the Grover 135N Vintage Tuners are a reliable choice that won’t disappoint.

If you’re still undecided, or interested in looking at other options, check out my post on the best tuners for Les Paul guitars.