ToneTree (2-pack)

Enhance treble string clarity and dynamics for guitars.

Provides a cleaner vibration path from strings into the headstock.

Improves string break angle and tension.

UPC: 20.02.03 Catalog Number: 20.02.02



  • Replacing your guitar’s standard string tree dramatically improves clarity and dynamics.
  • You won’t just hear the difference, you will feel the difference.


Material: Our thicker and heavier machined brass string tree transfers vibration more efficiently and cleanly than thin stamped steel or cast steel rollers.

Design: The ToneTree’s adjustable and lighter tension yields better sustain and tone than the heavy, overdamped, fixed tension of standard string trees.

Contact: Our string tree’s tiny area, fret-like contact with the strings ensures undistorted transfer of vibration and clearer, more resonant overtones.

  1. Unscrew the factory string tree and, using the brass woodscrew provided, mount the ToneTree in the same position. Do not place the factory string tree spacer under the ToneTree; it will definitely degrade the sound of the instrument.
  2. Tighten the screw until the ToneTree barely touches the two strings, then play a bit to check whether the ToneTree is so loose that the strings are buzzing. If so, tighten the screw a bit further at a time until the buzz disappears. If you tighten beyond this point, you will start losing tone.
  3. Even if your guitar came from the factory without a second string tree for the D and G strings, you will get a satisfying further improvement in tone by adding the second ToneTree. Position it 3/8” further from the nut than the ToneTree holding down the E and B strings.


Why does the tiny ToneTree improve the tone of the upper strings so much?

When thinking about getting superb tone from guitars, everyone naturally homes in on the quality, shape and thickness of the wood used for the body, the material of the bridge, the type of strings, the pickups, etc. All the focus is on the lower half of the instrument.

But headstock resonances have a far bigger effect than almost anyone imagines. Attach a small piece of anything as highly damping as lead or rubber or plasticene to the headstock of your guitar and you will be amazed at how dead and lifeless it sounds. But attach a small piece of non-damping metal and you’ll get a nice improvement in tone.

How can this be? The physics are simple. When you pluck or bow a string, you are pumping energy into the string to make it resonate. Half that resonant energy travels as vibrations down the string towards the body and half travels up the string towards the headstock. The physics of strings says you can’t have more energy traveling in one direction than the other. What happens to that energy? At the body end, the vibrations flow into the body via the bridge, the string anchors or the tail piece and the tail block (for hollow bodies). The body resonates in response and reflects those resonances or vibrations back into the strings. That’s why the body and the bridge have such a big effect on how good your instrument sounds.

But remember, exactly the same amount of vibrational energy is also flowing up the string into the headstock via everything that anchors the upper end of the string: the tuner, the nut and the string tree . So, just like at the bottom end, those vibrations flow into the headstock, causing it to resonate and reflect those resonances back into the strings. In other words, it is impossible for the headstock not to have about as big an effect on tone as the body of the instrument. That means anything you do that changes the vibration flow into the headstock has a very audible effect on tone, whether for better or worse.

What makes the ToneTree sound so much better than stamped steel or roller string trees?

Mapleshade Studio’s 30 years of pioneering vibration control research and listening experiments have established that four factors dictate success in improving sound: material, mass, shape, contact area and contact pressure:

A. Material: Over the years we have tested by ear almost 50 different materials for transmitting vibrations including standard and high hardness steels, titanium, aluminum alloys, ceramics, carbon fiber/graphite and brass. Brass came out by far the best sounding, more uncolored and clearer than any other material. Not all brass alloys sound the same, so we then tested half a dozen alloys to come up with the optimum alloy. Of course today that is the one we use in the ToneTree. And since the mounting screw is a critical element in the vibration path from the string into the headstock, we made sure the ToneTree’s mounting screw is also brass.

B. Mass and Shape: Our beta-test guitarists tested a half dozen prototypes of varying shapes, thicknesses, lengths and weights to arrive at the best-sounding configuration of improved string tree. All our brass prototypes had significantly more mass than standard steel string trees. We went on to test our final optimized design on both Strats and Teles from multiple makers. Our guitarists heard highly satisfying improvements over standard string trees on all makes and models. Moreover, on models that had only one string tree for the two high strings, we found that adding a second tree for the next two strings yielded even further improved tone.

C. Contact Area: The size of the contact patch between the GoldFinger and the headstock is of crucial importance. Without exception, transferring or draining vibration via small contact areas—preferably single point contact—sounds clearer and more resonant than transferring the same vibration across larger flat-to-flat contact areas. The reason is simple: with flat-to-flat contact, reflections and “micro-rattles” (because the two flat surfaces can never mate perfectly) muddy the sound; with point-to-flat contact eliminates reflections and micro-rattles. That’s why we designed the ToneTree with a rounded ridge across the bottom, in essence emulating a rounded fret’s single point of tangency contact with the string above.

D. Contact Pressure: In all of our previous vibration control research, we have found that excessive contact pressure always deadens sound—the optimum pressure must be determined by ear. Therefore, the ToneTree’s height is completely adjustable via the mounting screw. Our beta-test guitarists found this to be an essential feature. Without exception, they achieved the best tone by adjusting for the lightest possible downward tension, that is, as light as possible without causing string buzz.

What improvements in tone can you expect with the ToneTree—and why?

With the ToneTree replacing a factory or aftermarket string tree, you will immediately hear better dynamic impact, more chime and more treble energy in the high strings, along with newfound clarity as well as longer sustain. The reasons for this improved tone are easy to explain in terms of the four critical design factors outlined above.

First, the steel or graphite materials of standard and aftermarket string trees deaden and damp the vibrations flowing through them while brass sounds cleaner and more dynamic. Equally important, the ToneTree’s mass is about 3 times greater than stamped steel trees and 5 ½ times more than graphite ones.

Next, none of the other string trees have the small, fret-like string contact patch of the ToneTree. All of them are fixed in height—and that height is far too low, causing excessive downward pressure that deadens the string’s sound.

The steel aftermarket roller string trees insert yet another impediment to the clean flow of vibration over and above the relatively poor sound and inadequate mass of the steel. The roller’s vibration must pass through an extra contact patch that is prone to looseness and micro-rattles, namely, the roller-to-shaft bearing interface.

The ToneTree is a perfect example of the small, seemingly unimportant details that can transform the sound of even the most expensive instruments.

Our Money Back Guarantee

Please read the instructions and use our products as directed prior to return since this is critical for optimal results. If you cannot hear, see or feel the difference after trying our products as per the instructions you may return it within 30 days to the place of purchase for a refund. The returned item must be undamaged and unmarred with all original packaging and instructions intact and included.

To return an item:

1. Please contact your original place of purchase for returns or for a shipping address if sending the item by mail or parcel service. You will need to have a copy of your sales receipt. Please include a note giving the reasons for the return.

2.  Please pack the product to be returned with great care. The product must be returned undamaged and unmarred with all original packaging and instructions intact in like-new condition.  Be sure to include a copy of your receipt and your name, address, e-mail and phone number for processing of the refund.

3. We encourage customers to send the return using a trackable shipping method.  It is your responsibility to ensure the returned item arrives to your authorized dealer undamaged.  MMSG will not accept responsibility for returned items that are lost or damaged during shipping.  Once received, your return will be processed your authorized dealer will issue your refund promptly.  


We are very proud of the engineering and manufacturing quality of our remarkable products. Therefore, Mapleshade Music & Studio Gear, LLC warrants for a period of One (1) Year from the date of purchase when purchased from an authorized reseller. We will replace, without charge, any product that proves to be defective in materials or workmanship if it is returned to the original authorized reseller with the original receipt.

The warranty does not cover defects that are the result of an accident, misuse, contact with solvent chemicals or malfunction caused by other audio equipment. We are not responsible for damage that is caused by user abuse or by the product being used for what is not intended (for example do not use an instrument cable as a speaker cable; it will overheat and possibly damage your amplifier.).

The warranty excludes all incidental or consequential damages.

To activate our warranty, the product must be returned (with the original receipt) at the purchaser’s expense to the original authorized reseller or place of purchase.

You will receive a replacement as soon as it is confirmed there are defects in materials or workmanship.

Warranty Exceptions

The One (1) Year warranty does not apply to any Mapleshade Music & Studio Gear, LLC product that has been self-repaired or altered in any way. The warranty excludes any external damage and/or normal wear and tear to the product


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    For questions and technical support, please contact:

    Richard Casey
    ‭(845) 241-3103‬