acoustic string recommendation

Discussion in 'Acoustic Instruments' started by asv, Mar 22, 2006.


  1. asv

    asv Member

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    I was hoping someone could recommend a brand of light gauge strings that will add some brightness and clarity to a dark-sounding guitar. It's a Martin OOO type guitar. I love the guitar, but I want to try some different strings and see how it works out. It would be a bonus if the strings were long-lasting, but I'm not a big fan of coated strings. Thanks.
     
  2. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

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    You didn't mention what strings you're using now as a starting point, but it doesn't matter because no one can tell what you'll like best with that guitar anyway. :)

    I'm a big fan of D'Addario acoustic strings. I also prefer uncoated. I use plain ol' Phosphor Bronze because I think they're just the best strings ever invented, but I'm not trying to brighten up a "dark" guitar so it's hard to say if those will be best for YOU.

    Browse here, decide on a few that look interesting, buy one set of each here, and see which one you like best. It will cost you maybe $25 to find out.

    P.S. - I have seen them sold in 10-packs, which is a good deal once you know what you want. I'll see if I can find those...
     
  3. kev

    kev Member

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    Snake Oil Strings may be your answer. I would email Dean himself for a recommendation:

    http://www.sobstrings.net/af_string.htm


    FWIW, I use the PBM sets on my D-35ish copy (it has flame maple in the center splice rather than three pieces of rosewood, so it's a bit bright for starters). The strings took the harshness away, but retained the cutting ability of that maple.

    Kev
     
  4. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

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    Found 'em

    12-packs Here

    10-packs here

    I got a 12-pack last time and a 10-pack the time before that, but I don't remember who I bought either from and I can't go digging up receipts right now.
     
  5. r9player

    r9player Silver Supporting Member

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    Elixers after you play them in a little have a good loud and bright sound.
    I also like Martin SP and SP+ fairly bright and not as loud as Elixers.
     
  6. PHLOW

    PHLOW Member

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    You might want to compare a set of phosphor bronze vs. 80/20's of the same brand to see which type sounds more like what you are after. Then, experiment a bit with different brands of the type you lean toward. The party line is that 80/20's are "brighter" but that word means different things to different players

    Guitars respond differently and ears hear different, but to me Martin XP strings have a "bright" tone. I tend to like them on guitars I want to liven' up a bit, on others they sound a bit to shimmery. I also find SIT strings to have fairly bright tone. Like you, I'm not personally a big fan of coated strings, but I did try a set of the new Phosphor Bronze Elixir's and was pleasantly surprised.

    Good luck finding just the right set!
     
  7. Galejt

    Galejt Member

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  8. mbratch

    mbratch Member

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    Do they break in? I hope so. I just put a set (for the first time) on my Taylor 810 tonight and now it sounds like a $99 Esteban guitar. Not much tone. My prior set was D'Addario bronze, which I liked, but I wanted to try out the Elixers (which are over 2x the price of the D'Addarios).
     
  9. asv

    asv Member

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    I emailed Dean at SOB and he recommended I try the PBL1 and PBL3. Both are 12-53 but with different alloys. They are $9 a set, which is pretty reasonable if they last as long as advertised. I'll let you all know how they work out in my new OOO-28EC.

    I'll probably try a couple alloys from another brand as well, maybe either Dean Markley or D'Addario. Any strong feelings about these brands? I'm trying to narrow it down so that I don't have to try every string in existence. ;)

    I'm currently using John Pearse strings because someone at my local store recommended them, but I've been underwhelmed by them. I saw that someone recommended Martin as a bright string, but it seems to me that they start out very bright but get dull pretty quickly. Anyone else have that experience?

    I also asked him about bridge pins and he strongly recommended ebony for both the bridge and endpin. I'll probably try fossil ivory as well just because I'm a tinker and need to hear things for myself.

    Thanks for the suggestions.
     
  10. Cybercat

    Cybercat Member

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    +1 for the Snake Oils, and also for Kev's reccomendation to speak to Dean first.

    Dean has at least 3 different styles for any given guage (...& prolly the best ears & experience in the string buisness), so if you can let him know what strings you've been using that sound 'dark', what style of playing & music you do etc., I 'm sure he can steer you to the right set for you.

    ...Oh, by the way, Snake Oil Brand strings are NOT coated, but still last longer than any other strings i've ever used - the tone seems to actually improve the more you play them!

    Good luck!
     
  11. r9player

    r9player Silver Supporting Member

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    In my experience Elixers sound bad to average to start and after you play them in they get excellent volume and bright sound. Hope it works out.
    I think on a Taylor 810 it may reduce some of what I think of the 'classic' 810 sound which is a deep strong 'thumpy' low end.

     
  12. ericcsong

    ericcsong Member

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    I'm a big fan of phosphor bronze. I primarily use D'addarios. great bang for the buck. sometimes I treat myself with some John Pearse PB
     

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