"Gear" is an interesting discussion.... at times. The search for "tone" can be a fun passion project; or, destructive distraction.

Sometimes, far too much emphasis is placed on "gear," instead of the "song." The two main questions anyone, in any endeavor, should ask regarding the "tools of their trade," is:

1) Does it help you be the best you, you can be.

2) Does it serve its purpose? In this case does it serve the song?


That being said, a few general philosophies that I don't mind sharing:

Great is the enemy of good.

Less is more.

Avoid "paralysis by analysis." Choice can be the enemy of progress.... certainly too much choice can be.

Remember, you can only play one guitar at a time.

Be careful of nuances vs. actual differences. For example, there are really only 12 (or so) different "types" of guitars; 5 (or so) different amp topologies; and 18 (or so) different "types" of guitar effects. The remaining thousands upon thousands of other choices, are really just variants of those core items.

Tone is 90% in your fingers.... For example, I have had the pleasure of catching the wonderful Robben Ford many times over the years. I have seen him play Les Pauls, Double-humbucker signature Fenders, Vintage Tele, and various 335 style guitars.... I have also heard his renowned Dumble ODS. But, I have to say, having heard him play an Epiphone Riviera (with mini-humbuckers) through a Dumble, and a Gibson SG through a Roland Blues Cube (Summer NAMM)....

.... tone might be closer to 99.99% in your fingers. Just say'n.

Additionally, the discussion with electric guitar tone is "signal chain." The entire path matters. And just like every chain in any endeavor, it is only as good as its weakest link. For example, Fuzz and hard clipping distortion (Think Rat) pedals greatly effect the rest of the chain. If your $200 OD pedal is "always on," then a $10k boutique amp is rendered superfluous; you merely need a competent amp, to compliment the pedal, because it is the driving force of your tone when on.

If you need more convincing, put an EQ pedal anywhere in your current chain and slide the faders randomly. when you hear how much that alters tone, you'll re-think where you spend money.

p.s. This goes double for recording. If you know at some point you're going into the box, putting a bunch of boutique stuff in front of an interface, is literally silly.

My $.02 on gear, for whatever it is worth.