Gold-plated plugs can actually cause problems. When plugged in to a regular nickel plated socket, the dissimilar metals can create distortion (through a slight diode action). The real benefit of gold plated connectors is they do not tarnish. They must be mated with gold sockets. Regular nickel-plated plugs and sockets can be cleaned every 6 months with a good contact cleaner like DeoxIt. Take care not to spray contact cleaner anywhere near your guitar, it may damage the finish.