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A bard's equipment is largely dependent on the role they want to play in a party and the nature of their build.
 Healing Equipment
Every bard who uses healing spells will want a good Devotion or Potency item. Potency is universal, but not really needed, because bards don't have spells that cause a lot of damage. Since a bard's spells do not reach above level 6, a bard does not requires as high a level boosting item as a pure caster might.
Generally, bards should carry whatever wands are available for healing status effects.
Bards have limited weapon proficiencies. Many bards use the spell Master's Touch or multiclass to gain proficiency with martial weapons. Bards with the Warchanter II prestige class can benefit from Warchanter Weapon Training. This also allows the bard to become proficient with a martial weapon.
Ranged weapons are generally not worth it. Repeating crossbow is a popular choice for bards with a high dex who don't want to get into melee combat because it provides a decent ranged attack with only a one feat commitment.
The quarterstaff is the only two-handed weapon a bard is natively proficient in and thus can be popular among bards looking to take advantage of a high strength. However, strong bards usually find a way to become proficient with more powerful two-handed weapons.
Most bards prefer light armor because they do not suffer arcane spell failure while wearing it. Which type of armor depends most on what the bard's dex bonus happens to be. Mithral breast plates and Mithral chain shirts offer the best protection with adequate dex.
Bards with the Warchanter II prestige class gain Medium Armor proficiency and do not suffer arcane spell failure while wearing it.
Some bards prefer to wear robes and armor bonus bracers. This is a good choice for a bard with an extremely high dex, but is also good for a bard looking to use Arcane scrolls, because scrolls will trigger arcane spell failure from armor unlike a bard's native spells.
Shields are uncommon for bards but not unheard of. Mithral light shields are ideal as they have no spell failure chance. But some bards will simply un-equip a shield when preparing to cast a spell or use a scroll. It certainly doesn't hurt to have one in your inventory in case you need it.
 Spellcasting Equipment
Bards that want crowd control need an item that grants a DC bonus to enchantment spells. All bards can benefit from Potency, Devotion, Efficacy, or Ardor items to increase the damage healed by cure spells.
Most bards will also want an item of Power or Wizardry to boost the number of available spell points. If these are on a weapon, it is a good habit to wield this weapon before entering quest or using a shrine; cast your buffs after rest and then switch to your regular weapon again.
Bards do not have a rich selection of damage spells so items that boost damage are not commonly used.
All bards, but especially Spellsinger bards (which tend to focus more on spell casting support) will want to be sure to have an Anthem item, such as the Elyd Edge or the Stormsinger Cloak, so they are continually regenerating song uses.
Many bards with a strong UMD score will carry a wide selection of arcane wands and scrolls to use when appropriate for buffs or offensive spells.