For some guitar chords, I see things like add9 or add11 or add13. Why don't you just use add2 add4 or add6 instead?
Because it's a 9, 11 and 13. Not a 2, 4 or 6.

Honestly, that's the only reason I know of.

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Because usually the added intervals are greater than an octave from the root.
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cause its easier to say for example G6 then Gadd6. Sus just sounds cooler for 2 and 4.

and ^ i agree. the adds are usually at least an octave above the root.
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I really wish I had a good answer for this question, but I suppose I'll give it a shot anyway...

The most obvious reason is that compound intervals are simply better phrased as 9's than they are 2's. IT's certainly less dissonant to put an octave between the 1 and the 2, even though it's often done anyway to make them a multitude easier to play. However, it's not that simple.
In terms of the phrasing of chords intervals past 7 are considered less important than 7 and those before 7 because they are more definitive. If a chords consists of 1 3 5 b7 | 9 #11 (a lydian dominant, for those who are counting), the defining notes of the chord are, by far, the 1, the 3, the b7, and to a lesser extent, the 5. The 9 and the #11 are significantly less important to both the defenition and recognition of the chord; it is more important to define the chord as dominant than it is to define it as lydian.

I was taught another reason why but I don't remember what it is offhand.
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These are mainly jazz chords from piano where the lucky buggers have 10 fingers to play a chord.
The 9 11 13 chords have notes from the second 8ve in them, any of these chords automatically have the b7 (minor 7 interval) in them. This gives us a chord that has a stack of either major or minor thirds in them, eg C9would have 1 3 5 b7 9. If you use a sus2 or sus4 the order of thirds are broken up and also the b7 isn't included so you end up with sus chord and not a jazzy soounding chord.
The add (+) chords are a more recent invention and have the 9, 11 or 13 degrees in the chord with out the b7. They shouldn't be played as a sus chord although they often are these days.
Hope this helps, I've written an article on chord theory and submitted it to the main article directories and if there is enough interest I post it here, it's heavy stuff but if you pay attention and go thrugh it a few times you will understand it.

There is some good info about this at www.nofretguitarlessons.com.au
WikiBook answers:

The compound intervals work by following the same five rules as the simple intervals above (so the augmented eleventh might also be called a diminished twelfth!). Why even bother giving them separate names? The answer lies in their normal function within music. Complex jazz chords are built around stacks of thirds, and so the terms "ninth," "eleventh," and "thirteenth" are needed to designate intervals larger than a seventh.
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just think back to how chords are built.

you start from a root and 'stack thirds'


R 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13
R   3   5   7   9    11    13

sus chords are when the third is substituted for its neighbour note, therefore it is more appropriate to use 2 or 4, however often 9 and 11 are used there too.
Because usually the added intervals are greater than an octave from the root.

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People do actually use the 2 to denote a 9 sometimes. C2 for example would be 1 2 3 5 b7. But for me this is just confusing, with a 9 you can see how big the chord is kind of. Cant explain what i mean
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Go to your staff paper and re-write this song a half step down so on the paper it'll be like you have a "C" just move it down to a "B#"

Know your theory, then play like you don't.

simply because if you dont restart counting the octave 9 = 2. if you were to use 2=2 then instead of Cadd9 or C9 it would most like be a C/D C with a D in the bass because you would have to change the root note to get the 2nd. otherwise you'll have a good awkward stretch reaching for the secon on the next string.

so basically its just making sure you use the 2nd in the next octave.
As said, the adds are usually an octave up because you don't normally want notes that are a half step apart.
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