Everyone has had that rockstar dream at some point in their lives – you stand in the middle of a stage, and thousands of roaring fans chant and sing along to your incredible guitar-playing skills. This desire has fueled the music industry for years, and as more and more people learn how to play electric guitar, they are in need of quality strings.
Finding good electric guitar strings does not have to be complex or overwhelming. The first step is to find a set that matches the current level of your guitar skills and the type of specific electric guitar. Here is everything you need to know to make this purchase.
Why Do Good Electric Guitar Strings Matter?
Good electric guitar strings matter to finding your tone, playing style, and voice. Strings are the immediate connection between you and your electric guitar. They are the medium that you deliver your song through, sending vibrations throughout your body and the soundhole.
When you find good electric guitar strings to match this message, you can make your guitar shine. That is why there are such legends in all genres related to playing guitar. From the dulcet tones of B.B. King to the screams of Jimi Hendrix and Jack White, finding the good electric guitar stings will make a significant difference in your attachment to the instrument.
What are the Characterizes of Good Electric Guitar Strings?
There are thousands of guitar strings based on different brands and playing methods. Most of them have been manufactured based on thickness or gauge. The overall thickness makes a huge difference in the playability and sound of a string.
The overall thickness makes a huge difference in the playability and sound of a string. This usually has a brighter, vintage sound. Heavier gauges require more pressure but put out a punchy tone.
Nickel-plated strings are the most common among electric guitars. They deliver a balanced volume and brightness that audiences recognize. It is second only to stainless steel strings with a stronger core and winding, producing an even brighter sound, but will be harder on finger movement. Some musicians also use polymer coatings like Teflon, which produces a darker tone and can be too slippery for fretwork.
The Effects of Different Wounding Methods
Winding affects the tone and playability of any string. In most cases, you will end up with thick strings with a metal core and another metal wire wrapped around them. The thinner strings on a 6-string guitar will have unwound wire. The most common types of electric guitar strings with different windings are:
These are constructed by wrapping a flat metal wire around a round or hexagonal core. You will immediately recognize a flat wire because of its more mellow and relaxed vibe that many jazz and rock used to tone down the performance. The flat winding strings tend to last a bit longer because they do not have the ridges of round winding, causing less fret wear.
These are made with a round wire around a round or hexagonal core. They provide a far more bright tone than strings of other winding styles. They are also the most popular version out there in the musical world. You will notice the “finger squeak” whenever these wires rub against the edges of your finger as you move them. Some songs actually rely on this attribute for added stylistic flavor.
Three Good Electric Guitar Strings for Different Applications
If you are exploring the guitar string market to find good electric guitar strings, here is a decent sampling of what is available to give you a better idea of what will work for your guitar skills.
- Elixir Optiweb – poly web coated electric guitar string that does not rust or gets dull over time. A decent natural feel and tone allow you to play a wide variety of songs and styles. Just keep in mind that they have that coating which could be slippery for some new players. Therefore, it is more suitable for guitarists with good guitar-playing techniques.
- D’Addario EXL – usually nickel-plated light electric guitar strings with a distinctive bright tone that reduces fret wear. They are light enough for beginners just learning. One thing you need to consider is they do not deliver the punch of thicker gauges you may want for in your face rock.
- Alice AE537 – premium carbon steel and iron allow with a bright and transparent timbre that offers decent longevity. It features rich harmonics, long-lasting bass, and good electromagnetic property, but it is not slippery like others. Its hexagonal core is amazing but not meant for those without finger calluses.
Where to Find Good Electric Guitar Strings
The next time you want to pick up replacement strings for your next gig or if you are learning the instrument from the beginning, check out Alice guitar strings. They offer a wide range of products that will work for any guitar-playing skill level. Almost all of their products have varying ranges of gauges, so you can still get the tone quality you want without needing to break your fingers on strings you are not used to using. Check out Alice today!