FretLight : Left Handed Guitar & Bass

The FretLight Guitar from Optek Music Systems is a product that is trying to drive the instrument into the 21st century through utilising software based technology to make learning the guitar more fun and intuitive.  These specially designed guitars use LEDs in the fretboard to show you exactly which notes you should be playing! 

Left Handed Fretlight Guitar and Bass

The idea behind the FretLight system is a simple one.  Instead of reading the information you need from a book or screen and then conveying that data onto your guitar’s fretboard, the guitar will display the information for you, on the neck where you need it.

The guitar connects to your computer via USB, and once connected specially designed software will communicate information between guitar and computer.  This might include lighting up a song note-by-note, displaying chord or scale shapes, or demonstrating one of the many inbuilt lessons.  The guitar also functions normally and can be plugged into an amp.

Left Handed Fretlight Guitars and Basses

Fretlight FG-521 Left Handed Guitar

Left Handed Fretlight FG521 Guitar

The FG-521 Traditional Electric has a classic look, sleek contours and rocks with the best of them! The robust pickup selection gives you a palette of tones to choose from while the strat-style alder body give this guitar a classic look. The Stratabond birch neck ensures that no matter what the environmental conditions, the neck remains straight and true.

Also available in black.

Fretlight FB-525 Bass

Left Handed Fretlight FB525 Bass

The FB-525 Bass gets big “J” tone out of its single coil bridge pickup and classic “P” style neck humbucker. Controls include a three-way pickup toggle switch, master volume and master tone. The FB-525 is finished with chrome hardware including a fixed bridge, and a two-way truss rod. Fully adjustable bridge saddles give you complete adjustability for a playing experience that can only be described as pure heaven! The Stratabond™ birch neck ensures that no matter what the environmental conditions, the neck remains straight and true.

Purchase Information

Both the guitar and bass are $400 at the time of writing, which I’m pleased to see is the exact same price as the right handed models. They both come bundled with software to get you started, and you can also choose an optional built-in tuner for $50 extra on the guitar.

For more information:
FretLight Guitar Website

8 replies
  1. Kieran
    Kieran says:

    I remember reading about these a few years ago. I wanted to try one to try and work on my scales better but I couldnt find any lefty's here in London. I still wouldn't mind trying one, is that $180 shipping next day? I assume it isn't seeing as you weren't impressed with it!

    Reply
      • Kieran
        Kieran says:

        Wow, yeah I see what you mean! That's pretty much the worst shipping quote I've ever seen LOL. I mean, MAYBE I'd pay $180 for 24 hour shipping but for 5-7 days on such a cheap guitar that's a total joke. Either their website must be broke or their courier is totally ripping them off.

        Let us know if they ever sort that out, or maybe we can order 2 to save on shipping haha! Even 2 for $180 is a bit pricey though lol

        Reply
  2. mark m
    mark m says:

    Thought you might like to know…..I've just seen a couple of these in black for sale on eBay through the european distributer based in Luxemberg. £390 with £25 shipping to the UK. They have one or two left and that's the only black stock available. The US only do the sunburst version. After seeing your comments above regarding the crazy shipping from the US thought this might be of interest.

    Reply
    • Mark M
      Mark M says:

      Hi Neal,
      He only had a small number of left-handed versions and they're shifting quickly so I guess he added a little "lefty tax!"
      I've checked out some reviews and they these guitars come out quite well. Although, I've dabbled for many years I've just started up again around 18 months ago (after not playing for a while) and the aspect that really appeals to me is the way it can help with improvisation or highlighting all the scaleboxes across the whole neck helping you to master scales quickly in all directions within different music styles. Although I'm currently waiting for one of Rob Chapman's lefty ML2s I'm quite tempted to get one of these. Will keep you posted 🙂

      Reply
      • Neal
        Neal says:

        Absolutely, I'd love to try one out just to have it map out scales over the entire neck. £400 is pushing it for me though. I downloaded the "new" software last week to have a look and it still looks like a 1990's piece of shareware software, it's horrible. I still reckon they have a long way to go to perfect the product. I can see Line6 doing something like this before long, and doing it better…

        Dude, get on the LeftyFretz forum so we can chat about ML2s! I need help deciding what to do with mine, it's doing my head in! 🙂

        Reply
        • Mark M
          Mark M says:

          Will check out the software too and go from there. Cheers

          Regarding the ML2, yeah, will get on the forum and we can catch up on this one. Not sure wthat to do with mine either. So many options! Need to nip out now but will try and get on there tomorrow and we can compare ideas 🙂
          Cheers

          Reply
          • mark
            mark says:

            Just wanted to add to my previous comments. I've recently seen one of these Fretlight strat guitars and must say I wasn't impressed at all. The concept of the LED fingerboard sounds great but the quality of the guitar itself is very poor. More like a £49.99 starter guitar with the added lights. Could be useful for kids starting out but that's about it (just my opinion). Just thought it would be useful to know if anyone is thinking of forking out for one expecting a decent quality instrument .

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