Strings for Gibson J-35 / J-45 that will last

Discussion in 'Acoustic Instruments' started by Magnets And Melodies, Aug 17, 2017.


  1. cap10kirk

    cap10kirk Member

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    My favorite acoustic strings were the Martin Retros. And if I ever put acoustic strings back on mine, that's what I'll go back to.
     
  2. HeavyRevy

    HeavyRevy Member

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    John Pearse Pure Nickel
    I have two sets going on a month old with no signs of slowing down. They are amazing!
    Was told about them from a gentleman on the acoustic guitar forum.
     
  3. Adagietto

    Adagietto Supporting Member

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    The Pearse Nickels and Martin Retros seem to be in the same general neighborhood, at least from the perspective of not having the hash of overtones that wound PB strings have. I've had them both on my main guitar, but not not enough to have a strong sense of their similarities and differences.
    That set of Retros went nearly two months, just guessing 40+ hours. They were fine, I took them off to replace the tuners — and installed a new set of Retros. This doesn't tell much about ultimate longevity, but they were going strong and I don't tend to put that many hours on PB or 80/20 strings.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2017
  4. tubetone74

    tubetone74 Supporting Member

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    I can attest to the Thomasstik Infelds (TI). Pricey, but last twice as long as the best of others, silky feel, easy to bend, and excellent tone.
     
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  5. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    +1 more for elixir nano phosphors. my old J-50 doesn't get gigged or even played that much these days, but the set of 12s i've had on it for a couple years now still sound good, like a decently broken-in new string. it helps that i'm not a string-breaker or string-killer, even regular strings will stay shiny on my guitars forever.

    i heard a set of the martin titaniums on a nice 00 martin, the guy paid like $40 for a set and hated them, and i had to agree; they sounded like a completely dead set right out of the package.
     
  6. Axis29

    Axis29 Supporting Member

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    Martin Retros sound great on my little Gibson Keb Mo Bluesmaster and my Fender dreadnought... and the new Recording King The set on my Dread has lasted about 14 months, but it doesn't get played as often. My Keb Mo had one set on for about 10 months, I'm on my second set now. I play the Keb Mo about four or five hours a week minimum, and it is my main gigging acoustic, it did six or seven gigs during that period. Probably could have lasted longer, but I had a big gig coming up that I couldn't take chances on.

    I also don't sweat much on my hands, or have acidic sweat... Strings do tend to last a while for me in general. Although steel roundwounds on my electrics lat a month, maybe six weeks if I am not playing it much. I tend to play nickel flats or burnished and they will last me a few months of regular playing and gigging.
     
  7. OM Flyer

    OM Flyer Member

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    Since you like the 80/20 Masterbilts, you should try a set of coated 80/20s. Both D'Addario and Elixer make them.

    Phosphor Bronze and Monel make for great strings (and the Martin Retros last seemingly forever), but only 80/20s sound like 80/20s. If you like that sound, stick with that material.
     
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  8. Axis29

    Axis29 Supporting Member

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    You're right, I breezed right over the 'sounds like 80/20' part. Martin Retros do not sound the same. Sorry about that. To me, they sound better... But, for what I play, they work. Also, a lot of guys have to play them a couple days for the tone to really settle in. Nice thing is, they ain't that expensive to try. But, if you do, try to give them a week or two at least.
     
  9. mrpinter

    mrpinter Supporting Member

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    I'm the only one, it seems, who mentions Optima. It's all we use on our guitars and they make great acoustic strings too. The Acoustic Gold strings last a REALLY long time without being coated with slippery teflon. Since they are coated with 24 carat gold they will not corrode or tarnish, even with sweaty acidic hands. They do have a sound of their own, however, but to me it's among the best acoustic sounds to be had.
     
  10. Adagietto

    Adagietto Supporting Member

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    I never heard of Optima until recently, but now have a set of Optima flats to put on one of my electrics.
     
  11. Wally Taylor

    Wally Taylor Member

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    I played bass for forty plus years, and the best strings ever were D'Addario Copper XL REDS. they had the warmest tone down low, and really full, cool highs. After that I had to try these REDS on my Gibson J35. I didn't want them on my Advanced Jumbo, because I want a jammin' kind of brash projection from my AJ. On the J35 I wanted fingerstyle warmth and good accompaniment sound for singing. They do great job at that even after a month. They are not for everybody, but they ARE for me. I like 'em.
     
  12. OM Flyer

    OM Flyer Member

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    On my J-35, I found that Pyramid Western Folk roundcores reduced some of the brightness inherent to that model. The J-45, with its standard bracing, doesn't need that kind of taming, IMO.
     
  13. 3waytie4last

    3waytie4last Gold Supporting Member

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    Thomastik Infeld makes the best strings, period. Acoustic or electric. But so few people ever find out because they only look at the price tag and reject them without trying.
     
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