About Guitar Strings

Let's face it. You will buy your own sets of guitar strings many times if you own and play a guitar. Strings are bound to break, or wear out and will need to be replaced regardless of how you play them or how good the guitar is. It is actually highly recommended that you change your strings at least every three months to keep the quality of sound from your guitar up to snuff. Your strings will sound "dead" when it is time to get a new set, and you will slowly notice the change in sound and feel.

About Guitar Strings

So the question is, "which strings should I buy?"

There are many different brands, sizes (gauges), construction types, and even shapes of guitar strings that can be purchased at the local music store. Knowing some key qualities that make a set of strings the type that it is, is critical in making the right decision when you go to purchase guitar strings. Let's have a look at some of those aspects.

Gauge

The gauge of the strings refers to the diameter thickness of the strings themselves. Most strings that come in a pack are sized relative to the smallest (high e) string. The gauge can be referred to as the thickness of the smallest string. There are custom sized string available that break the regular trend of the difference between thicknesses from the high string to the low string. Ask your music store for more details if interested. Usually, I like to advise beginner guitarists to use a medium gauge at first, because it helps to lengthen the life of the strings, they provide an even tone, and they help strengthen the fingers a bit. After that, you can try playing the guitar with different gauges of strings to find which ones feel and sound the best to you.

Brand

There are many different brands of guitar strings out there. Certain guitarists like different types of strings, so it cannot be determined which is technically the "best". Although, as with any consumer product no matter the industry, you will almost always get better quality and performance out of a brand name string as opposed to a private music store brand. There is no guarantee the quality of any particular string though. I have had what I believe is the best quality string break on me as I was installing it a couple of times. Some popular brands on the market are: D' Addario, Ernie Ball, Eric Clapton, Elixir and Jim Dunlop. Each company has their own staple sound that comes off their strings. It is your choice which type you prefer.

Types

There are a few choices when it comes to construction type and shape when buying guitar strings. First off, you must decide what type of material the strings will be, whether it be nickel, or even titanium coated. There are some pretty interesting strings out there if you look hard enough. Also, there are flat, semi-flat, and rounded strings which you may prefer. These special strings may help to ease the wear and tear on your finger tips. There is usually a tonal difference when you use these types of strings though, because they vibrate differently on frets compared to rounded strings. The choice is yours.

Now that you have some insight on what you may be looking for when buying guitar strings, you can make a more informed decision as to which ones you will use.

I have been playing the guitar for 13 years and know quite a bit about all aspects of guitars. 4 of those years i had professional guitar lessons, and 2 years I was on stage in front of crowds of 500-1000 fans.

Check out my website: howtoplayaguitar.co, an informational website that teaches aspiring guitarists many useful tips, techniques and playing styles among other interesting information on guitar related topics. I have geared the site to teach a beginner the basics, all the way up to professional levels.

Enjoy!

by Christopher A Collins; Tuesday, March 27, 2012 @ 07:36 AM [5751]

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