Acoustic Guitar

Best Acoustic Guitar Strings

July 25, 2019
Shani

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Best Acoustic Guitar Strings

The acoustic guitar is a major part of many cultures and communities. It’s an instrument that tells a story and creates a sense of pride.

The instrument comes in many shapes and sizes, and the type of music that each one makes differs from model to model.

Besides the guitar itself, the strings play a large part in what kind of sound it makes.

Elixir Strings 80/20 Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

  • Durable and long lasting
  • Produce full sound
  • Cheap and affordable
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D'Addario EJ16 Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

  • Bright and Clear Sound
  • Carry and balance notes
  • Cheap and Affordable
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Martin MSP4150 SP Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

  • Produce balanced tone and volume
  • Easy to play
  • Comfortable on fingers
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Ernie Ball 2146 Earthwood String Set

  • Unique tone
  • Easy to play
  • Cheap and affordable
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Fender 60L 0730060408 Acoustic Guitar

  • Harmonic tone
  • Easy to play
  • Stay in tune
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Best Rated Acoustic Guitar Strings Reviewed

 

Buying guitar strings doesn’t have to be a painful process.

To make your life a little bit easier, we put together a list of our top recommended acoustic guitar strings.

Elixir Strings 80/20 Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

Pros:

  • Durable and long lasting
  • Produce full sound
  • Cheap and affordable

Cons:

  • Difficult to insert
  • Require a break in period
  • Strings vibrate

These acoustic guitar strings are made with 80 percent copper and 20 percent zinc. The ultrathin nanoweb coating on the strings provides a more traditional and uncoated feel to the strings.

The coating protects the strings and provides them with a longer lifespan than other strings. Finally, the strings provide the guitar with a vibrant but light musical tone.

D'Addario EJ16 Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

Pros:

  • Bright and Clear Sound
  • Carry and balance notes
  • Cheap and Affordable

Cons:

  • Lack of volume
  • Break easily
  • Rough on fingers

D’Addario EJ16 Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings are American made long-lasting, guitar strings. The strings produce a warm and balanced tone and a precise intonation. Moreover, these strings are manufactured using digital winding, making sure the strings are as tight and balanced as possible. Additionally, the 80/20 Bronze coating, provides the string with a unique tone. Finally, D’Addario strings are made using only environmentally friendly materials.

Martin MSP4150 SP Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

Pros:

  • Produce balanced tone and volume
  • Easy to play
  • Comfortable on fingers

Cons:

  • Don’t last long
  • Break easily
  • Strings Buzz

These Martin MSP4150 SP Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings are made with a high-quality steel core to keep breakage from happening. The strings are plated with a bronze finish to make the strings stronger and extend their life. Finally, the bronze coating covers the string and the core wires, to enhance durability. It also provide a sleek look and even allow for a brighter musical tone.

Ernie Ball 2146 Earthwood String Set

Pros:

  • Unique tone
  • Easy to play
  • Cheap and affordable

Cons:

  • Have an underlying metal tone
  • A few users say you need to tune it constantly
  • Some say they easily

The Ernie Ball 2146 Earthwood String Set is an American string from 92 percent copper. The string comes in element shield packaging to keep the strings from ruining in transit. In addition, these strings produce rich and vibrant sounds. And finally, the core wire is of brass, making the string strong and durable.

Fender 60L 0730060408 Acoustic Guitar Phosphor Bronze Ball End Strings

Pros:

  • Harmonic tone
  • Easy to play
  • Stay in tune

Cons:

  • A few people say them easily
  • Some users say you need to switch often
  • Rough on hands

Fender 60L 0730060408 Acoustic Guitar Phosphor Bronze Ball End Strings provide a warmth and depth to the musical tone of the guitar. The strings are bronze, providing the tone with a unique dimension. Additionally, the strings are of medium gauge, making the tone deeper and the string stronger. Finally, the tone of the strings is perfect for solo artists and songwriting.

Choosing the Right Guitar Strings

Choosing guitar strings is not as easy as picking up something from the store. Different strings provide different tones and melodies and it’s important to know how to choose the ones that work best for you.

  • Buy Them Coated – Uncoated strings do tend to be cheaper than their coated counterparts. But they also can ruin the strings’ tone. When you play with uncoated strings you’re allowing dirt and grime from your fingers to build up in the crevices. Therefore, it is best to just spend the extra few dollars on strings that will keep your guitar sounding great.
  • Metal Music – Another thing that can affect the tone of the string is the metal they’re made with. Some metals provide a lighter and brighter tone, while others produce a deep and earthy tone. Knowing the difference in metals will help you know the type of string you need to produce the sound you want.
  • Wound or Round? – Every string has a strong metal core; the differences start with what’s wound around them. The wounding around is either round wound, half round, or flat wound. Each wounding provides a different tone and volume.
  • Gauge the Gauge – The gauge of a string refers to its thickness, ranging from super light to thick. Although this may not sound important, it actually plays a large role in playability and sound. Some people find that thicker strings are harder to play, while others complain that light strings are too delicate and high pitched. Regardless, only you know what sound works best for you.

Also Read: Best Acoustic Guitar Straps

Key Considerations When Buying Guitar Strings

It may seem easy to buy strings, but there are actually a lot of things to consider before going out and purchasing them.

  • Guitar Type – This may seem obvious, but it’s actually a really important part of the process. Different guitars use different strings, and these are generally not interchangeable. For example, a nylon string guitar cannot use metal strings. Using the wrong string in the wrong guitar can cause damage and ultimately ruin the instrument.
  • Gauge – Different strings come in different gauges. This means different strings have different thicknesses. The thickness of the string can affect the playability, the tone, the volume, and even the roughness. Therefore, knowing what gauge is most comfortable is a must before purchasing. If a string is too thick, it can bend, break or ruin the neck and head of the guitar.
  • Material – When it comes to guitar strings, different ones are made of different metals and cores. At times, strings are even made of nylon. All these things affect the tone and the lifespan of guitar strings and are important to take into account when buying new ones.
  • Coating – Most strings these days come with an extra layer of coating in order to elongate their lifespan. While this sounds like a positive – and is for the most part – it can also affect playability and comfort. So, make sure you know the feel and comfort of a string before you buy it.
  • Quantity – There are a few things that affect how many strings you need to purchase. One thing simple, how many strings are there on your guitar? 6? 12? What people may not realize is that the more you play, the more often you need to switch out your strings. Strings wear out quickly, and worn out strings do nothing but ruin the quality of the sound your guitar produces. If you play your guitar daily then you should be switching your strings every 1 to 2 weeks.
  • Budget – Just like everything else in life, there is a large price range when it comes to guitar strings. The bronze string being the cheapest and coated string are the most expensive. It’s important to know all the pros and cons of each string, including how much each purchase may affect the bank.
  • Packaging – We know they say not to judge a book by its cover, but can you judge a book by the box that it comes in? Honestly, there is a whole industry out there trying to figure out how to best transport guitar strings. Whether it’s weather avoiding bags or eco-friendly packages, there is a whole slew of different packaging options to choose from.

Also Read: Best Acoustic Guitar Tuners

How Often Should Guitar Strings Be Switched

While there is no magical number for how often guitar strings need to be switched, the general recommendation for beginners is about every three months. However, that’s only because they are unable to recognize the signs of wearing guitar strings.

  • Tone – Strings wear over time and use. After they have run their span the tone and sound they produce tend to become dull and different. It may be hard to recognize at first, yet when you’re still learning the way everything should sound,  over time, you’ll begin to recognize the dull tone.
  • Break Easily – A clear sign that strings have passed their prime is if they start to snap easily. When strings wear down, they become weak and begin to break easily.
  • They’re Sticky – Grime and dust from your fingers build up in strings as you use them. When they begin to become sticky and gross, that’s a sign that you’ve been using them for too long and it’s time to let them retire.

Also Read: Best Acoustic Guitar for Beginners

Final Thoughts

In the end, playing the guitar is a great skill and hobby. Not only is it a wonderful way to pass time, but it’s also a great way to enhance your cognitive skills, relieve stress and improve your overall physical health. However, none of that is possible without the perfect guitar string. Even though it may just seem like one small thing, it can affect the way you play.

Shani

Shani holds a journalism bachelor's degree and is an cat over and adoring owner of two cats,Sahni’s love for music has led her to a successful career as a freelance writer specializing in musical instruments. When she's not writing she likes spending time with her spend and their 2 sons
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