Blog Post

Things to know about strings

The descriptions I see on string packs make me smile. It seems that the manufacturers don’t want to lose a sale, so they attempt to market to everyone. A pack of strings might say they have that “vintage, modern, bright, mellow, loud but subtle sound.” I exaggerate, but only a little! So here is our take on strings.

Acoustic guitar
• Thicker strings give more sustain, volume and bass, but they are harder to play. Find a balance that fits your style, sound, and technique.
• 80/20 bronze strings are even response, ideal for fingerpicking because each note is about the same volume and tone as the next.
• Phosphor bronze strings reminds me of the smile face EQ trick. More lows and highs and less midrange, great for chord strumming and “cutting” through the other instruments.

Electric guitar and bass
• They range from steel to steel plated nickel to nickel. Steel is the brightest and nickel is more mellow.
• Half-round and flat-would are very mellow, more suitable for playing jazz on guitar, and often used on fretless basses because they dig into the fingerboard less.
• Thinner strings are better for bending and better at the bright sparkly Fender type tone than thicker ones are.

These are generalizations. Try a couple different gauges or materials until you find one that is right for you.

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