Full Access Members Only

Power vs. Open Chords, What's the Difference?

 

Get Full Access Today To Learn

Using Power Chords to Expand Your Sound

Plus 11,000 More Guitar Lessons.

Product Cost Lessons Instructors Instructor Help New Lessons Return Policy
Guitar Tricks $19.95 11,000+ 45 Instructors Yes Yes, Weekly 60 Days
Guitar Dvd's $30 - $60 20 - 30 1 Instructor No Interaction No No
Guitar Books $20 - $40 30 - 40 1 Instructor No Interaction No No
Other Sites $20 - $40 100 - 500 1-5 Instructor Sometimes Sometimes 3-7 Days
In-person $40 - $80 1 Hour 1 Instructor Yes Yes No
Even though the name of the chord is the same whether it is played as an open chord, or as a power chord, there is quite a difference in tone and mood between the two.

The open chords contain more strings, and a much richer sound. They also allow you to play major chords and minor chords, with a distinct difference in sound between the two.

Power chords do not qualify as strictly major or minor (more on that coming up!!), so they provide less nuance. On the other hand, they open up new styles and rhythm possibilities, as well as the convenience of the Magic L.
Open In New Window
lesson notation