As you improve as a guitar player, you might covet a new instrument while also having a deep connection to your current guitar. The good news is that with a few tweaks to your current guitar, you can transform it into a high-performance machine with which you can feel confident performing on stage. Your local guitar store not only sells new and used guitars but also likely has a service department that can perform repairs and upgrades for players. Here are some upgrades that can greatly improve the performance of your guitar.
While you're unlikely to "wear out" the current pickups in your electric guitar, you can certainly have a technician swap them for higher-end pickups that will dramatically improve the sound of the instrument. There are a variety of pickup sounds and styles made with specific types of magnets and wire for people who play every sort of music, and whether you favor the twangy sound of country music or the overdriven tones of heavy metal, you'll be able to find the pickups that will accentuate your sound. Best of all, you'll be able to buy them right in the shop and get recommendations from the sales staff to ensure that you're happy with your purchase.
Unlike pickups, it's possible to wear out the frets of your guitar over time. The pressure from the strings can gradually wear away at the metal of the frets and compromise your tone. A technician can carefully pull out your current frets and replace them with new frets. You don't necessarily have to use the fret gauge that was previously in the instrument. By upgrading to bigger frets, for example, you'll improve your tone and sustain. You can also choose different fret materials; nickel and stainless steel are the most common. Many players prefer the latter because of its high degree of durability.
Guitar potentiometers, more commonly known as "pots," are the electronics in your guitar that control your tone. They're connected to the knobs that allow you to increase the tone for a brighter sound or roll the tone back for a softer sound. New pots can dramatically change the sound of your instrument, and there are many different styles of pots to consider. Switching to 500K pots, for example, will give your instrument a bright, lively sound; 250K pots, meanwhile, will provide a warm sound that is ideal for playing blues or jazz music.