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What guitar and string combinations are best ?

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I have an acoustic steel string (Tanglewood Evolution series TW28CE) and want to know what guitar strings sound the best for different types of music, also what electric guitar and string combinations work well,

thanx everyone for a great forum !

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Hi

Strings are only part of the equation, and the model of a guitar doesn't always indicate what strings you may prefer.

A lot of strings are rated in terms of brightness or warmth/mellow-ness, so if you think about where you want to go in terms of tone that can be helpful.

Some guitar and string combinations work really well - but there is no way of knowing that before you try them.

My Maton acoustic sounds great with Martin SP strings. My Taylor sounds great with GHS Laurence Juber Signature Series...and I don't really like D'Addario on that guitar. I only found that out by trial and error.

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Warm sounds are like those you hear in many Jazz, Blues and Standard songs. Bright is that Western swing, country sound. Rock goes either way depending on the style. The tonewoods also have a major effect on the warmth or brightness, Rosewood and maple bodies are warmer than mahaogany, Spruce is brighter than cedar for tops.

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After consulting with the sales person on what type oftone I like, should I go for a more expensive set of strings hoping that the price will deliver the quality ?

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Price is by no means a deciding factor. I have used expensive Tomastik flatwounds and found them less satisfactory than DR's costing about 30% less for my archtop. My 335 sounds best with D'Addario' flats. My acoustic dread and A/E 000 each have different DR's,( 11's on the 000 and 13's on the dread) and my Strat has Earnie Ball Slinkies(10'S). It's all trial and error, and there may be better combinations out there, but I found a good tone on each and leave well enough alone. YOUR particular guitar and playing style will decide in the long run.

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Price is by no means a deciding factor. I have used expensive Tomastik flatwounds and found them less satisfactory than DR's costing about 30% less for my archtop. My 335 sounds best with D'Addario' flats. My acoustic dread and A/E 000 each have different DR's,( 11's on the 000 and 13's on the dread) and my Strat has Earnie Ball Slinkies(10'S). It's all trial and error, and there may be better combinations out there, but I found a good tone on each and leave well enough alone. YOUR particular guitar and playing style will decide in the long run.

I am less than impressed by Tomastik strings - break before reaching pitch too often!

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I have heard that, too about the Tomastiks, although I never had that problem with the 2 or 3 sets I tried. But they all sounded somewhat dull or muted on my particular guitar.

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Hi Guys,

Originally, I used Ernie Ball "10s" and "9s" - But they're just not up to the job. A few contributors mention D'adarrios (which I think are Italian-made). The Dadarrio 11s I ended up using give a mellow sound and seem to last forever (on acoustic). Of course, the secret is to let any new set of strings stretch a good half hour, or more, before you tune-up.

Legend Keith Richards uses Ernie Ball "customs" on his electrics, but I notice he mentions "Ernie Ball" with a smile on his face (when talking strings) - The company send them to him free afterall wink.png

Kind Regards, NB

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Looks like EXP11's are recommended for the guitar on their site. As to tone, your fingers will give you a warmest tone. As far as picks, be it thumb or flat pick. The thinner the pick, the brighter the tone. The thicker the pick the warmer the tone. Likewise tone changes when playing at the sound hole or nearer the neck warmer and nearer the bridge brighter.

Of course we all know the nylon classical strings have a warm tone.

As they say, the tone is in the fingers.

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Hi Guys,

Originally, I used Ernie Ball "10s" and "9s" - But they're just not up to the job. A few contributors mention D'adarrios (which I think are Italian-made). The Dadarrio 11s I ended up using give a mellow sound and seem to last forever (on acoustic). Of course, the secret is to let any new set of strings stretch a good half hour, or more, before you tune-up.

Legend Keith Richards uses Ernie Ball "customs" on his electrics, but I notice he mentions "Ernie Ball" with a smile on his face (when talking strings) - The company send them to him free afterall wink.png

Kind Regards, NB

D'Addario's and DR's are American made on Long Island, NY, and New Jersey respecively.

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Of course, the secret is to let any new set of strings stretch a good half hour, or more, before you tune-up.

I believe there is no need for that. I think it is best to get them up to pitch, stretch them, tune up again, stretch once more. If the strings are decent you can change them over within 10 minutes and then get playing.

People often comment on my changing strings just before I start the night, or even in between sets, thinking that I am nuts. If the strings are put on correctly and the guitar is in good condition they can be restrung in a few minutes and good to go.

I used to use D'Addarios all the time for the acoustic but a few years ago I noticed a change with the strings and switched. They didn't seem to produce the same tone nor last as long as before.

The material the pick is manufactured from also influences the tone. I have some very heavy picks that still produce a bright tone.

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Hi Guys,

Hmm... Thanks for the heads up on Daddario... When I used Ernie Ball 9s getting them up to pitch nearly took my eye out. Mind you, I was a greenhorn with guitars back then. So, I started fitting the strings, tightening them up (without bringing them up to pitch), leaving them to "rest" (or stretch), then tuning them up to the correct pitch. This saved me a few quid and kept me from losing an eye. Amateurs tend to twist pegs full turns, leading to breakages.

For scotty b - I haven't noticed quality degradation on Daddarios, but Ernie Balls always seemed less well-made. Wonder what you use now?

You're definitely not "nuts" re-stringing before performances, I heard some pros fit new strings before each show. I guess if you're at the top of your game and have a guitar-tech on standby, that's no problem...

Kind Regards, NB

PS: I use Daddario 11s on my Gib Copy too... They seem to last ages and have a bright tone... Any thoughts welcomed.

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