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Strings are a crucial part of every stringed instrument, like the name should imply, without good strings even a nice guitar won’t sound as well as it should and will lose its tone potential. Good strings are available from quite low prices (even less than 10 euro). There are different sizes and types, so it’s quite good to know a little bit about it.
Electric guitar strings
They’re made of metal and differ in gauge and core type. With your first strings it’s worth to think especially about the gauge, and if you’re not decided for anything yet, it’s probably ok to buy the standard 10s for starters. This is the most common gauge, which will allow you to decide if you’d like to go for thicker or thinner strings the next time. They might be perfect for you in the end, too. A great choice would be to buy GHS GBTNT, despite a low price these strings are pretty popular among guitarists who might have tried out some more expensive ones as well. Their tone is warm, and the biggest advantage is being prone to feel different articulation.
Acoustic guitar strings
Tone quality of that group of products should be much more satisfying than for string in a electric guitar, so despite using the same materials, we shouldn’t mount acoustic guitar strings in an electric guitar. The gauge should differ depending on your own feel, but a good advice is to use thicker strings, like 11s or 12s, so the guitar could resonate with a fuller sound. A good choice here are Martin M140 strings. Guitar should sound full and rich with enhanced middle range.
Classical guitar strings
They’re made of nylon and this aspect has got the biggest influence on their tone. It’s warm and not as loud as with acoustic guitar strings. Good strings are for example D’Addario EJ 43, which sound quite warm and clear, and aren’t difficult to press, which is an advantage for beginner players.
Guitar strings are not everything there is, seeing as you can also grab new strings for ukulele, banjo or mandolin as well. It’s a good idea to supply yourself with some spare strings, even separate ones, especially with the thinnest string, which breaks more often.
Bass guitar strings
They’re much thicker than the rest and would usually by packed in sets of four strings, though you can find 5-string or 6-strin basses, too. With their thickness bass strings are at the same quite stronger and have great longevity. A good choice would be Warwick 46200 Red Lab, they’re cheap and worth buying due to their natural and deep tone. Warwick produces great quality bass equipment, and their strings are no different.
Coated and uncoated strings
Very often while buying new strings you can see signs like Nanoweb or Polyweb. What does it mean? Both of them have coating of different type, which is supposed to prolong the vitality of strings. Nanoweb coating is very thin and it’s barely noticeable for our fingers, but still make the strings stronger than the uncoated ones. Polyweb coating is thicker, and you can easily feel it with your fingers, makes the strings stronger and more vital, as well as influences the sustain. Uncoated strings are not as strong and will lose their freshness much quicker, but it doesn’t mean they’re bad. Their advantage is a more natural tone, so it’s quite useful to have them for studio recordings or live shows.
There’s an instrument that has got just one string. It’s called Diddley bow and it’s usually used in blues music. A good example of using that instrument is a musician called Seasick Steve.
Despite having a wide range of different strings, seeing they have different types, gauges, and not only, it’s still not so hard to choose them for yourself, you just need to start out and feel what’s suitable for you.