Guitar Compatibility Charts

Which guitar controllers work with Rock Band and Guitar Hero? Keep track in our guitar compatibility charts.

Being a rock star was a lot easier when Guitar Hero was the only franchise in town. Once you had a Guitar Hero controller, you could depend on your trusty axe to work on all future Guitar Hero games on the same game console. However, guitar compatibility has become a major question now that Rock Band has joined Guitar Hero in the genre. You can't mix and match controllers with games anymore now that we have two competing game franchises with different guitar designs. We put together guitar compatibility charts for each major platform to show you which controllers work with Guitar Hero and Rock Band.

Xbox 360 Guitar Compatibility

Xbox 360Guitar Hero IIGuitar Hero III: Legends of RockRock Band

Fender Stratocaster (RockBand)
NoNoYes

Gibson Les Paul (Guitar Hero III)
YesYesYes, no effects switch

Wireless Gibson X-plorer (Guitar Hero II)
YesYesYes, no effects switch

The Guitar Hero III Gibson Les Paul and the original Gibson X-plorer from Guitar Hero II will both work as lead or bass guitars in Rock Band on the Xbox 360. However, they don't have the built-in audio switchers to activate echo, flanger, and other guitar sound effects.

While the Xbox 360 RedOctane controllers play nicely with Rock Band, we can't say that the Rock Band guitar returns the favor. The Rock Band Fender Stratocaster will not work with Guitar Hero II or Guitar Hero III.

PlayStation 3 Guitar Compatibility

PlayStation 3Guitar Hero III: Legends of RockRock Band

Fender Stratocaster (Rock Band)
NoYes

Gibson Les Paul (Guitar Hero III)
YesNo

As you can see, there isn't much cross-game guitar compatibility on the PlayStation 3. The Guitar Hero III Gibson Les Paul controller works only with Guitar Hero III, whereas the Rock Band Fender Stratocaster only works with Rock Band. The problem is that the Rock Band package includes only one guitar. This means that many aspiring groups will have to make do without a bassist until Harmonix begins selling individual guitars.

Wii Guitar Compatibility

WiiGuitar Hero III: Legends of Rock

Gibson Les Paul (Guitar Hero III)
Yes

The Wii only has Guitar Hero III right now, but we made room for a chart in case Rock Band becomes available.

PlayStation 2 Guitar Compatibility

PlayStation 2Guitar HeroGuitar Hero IIGuitar Hero Encore: Rocks the 80sGuitar Hero III: Legends of RockRock Band

Fender Stratocaster (RockBand)
NoNoNoNoYes

Wireless Kramer Striker (Guitar Hero III)
YesYesYesYesYes

Wireless Guitar (Guitar Hero Encore)
YesYesYesYesTBD

Gibson SG (Guitar Hero I & II)
YesYesYesYesYes

We don't have Rock Band for the PlayStation 2 yet, but we'll update the chart once we get the chance to run the game and the guitar through the compatibility gauntlet.

Update: Rock Band for the PlayStation 2 is now available. The PS2 Fender Stratocaster didn't work with any of our Guitar Hero games, but the wireless Kramer and the original Gibson SG guitars worked fine with Rock Band.

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