The acoustic guitar retains its integrity in the quality of string which it accommodates. The string is also seen to be as extremely important as the tonewood of the guitar.
The matter on acoustic guitar strings being undermined in statements like: ‘aren’t all strings the same?’ This has its response to be that different strings have the ability to make an acoustic guitar play like a different instrument. There are coated strings with steel core, aluminium and having different gauge types; there are also other traditional strings. We would understand some more about acoustic guitar strings in this article.
Acoustic Guitar string gauge
There are five major string gauges for acoustic guitars, they include;
- Extra light: .010, .014, .023, .030, .039, .047 (mostly called 10’s)
- Custom light: .011, .015, .032, .042, .052 (mostly called 11’s)
- Light: .012, .016, .025, .032, .042, .054 (mostly called 12’s)
- Medium: .013, .017, .026, .035, .045, .056 (mostly called 13’s)
- Heavy: .014, .018, .027, .039, .049, .059, .060 (mostly called 14’s)
The string gauge for acoustic guitars is really important because the wrong string set will potentially damage your instrument.
The different string materials available possess their different sound qualities which appeal to different genres of the musical art and different people as well. The most common include;
- 80/20 Bronze:
This string material produces a clear lively tone, and it happens to be the most common of all. The material rusts more easily, and may need to be changed monthly with regular use. The D’Addario and Martin acoustic guitar string brand produce outstanding Bronze strings.
Other Bronze strings include Aluminium Bronze, Phosphor Bronze, Nickel Bronze and coated Phosphor Bronze string materials.
These string material produces their unique tones; they sound more crisper and hold tones longer than Bronze strings. Many of them have been introduced as results from improvements on the Bronze string material.
- Polymer Coated:
String coatings are protective covers for guitar string materials. The polymer coated string is very resistant to corrosion and they last longer than the non-coated strings.
The Elixir acoustic guitar string brand is most renowned for this string material; they coat their strings after making them, and it becomes a new variety for particular styles. Many players point out that the coating does not allow for longer tone sustainability, but a few others will trade the tiny slack for longevity.
- Silk and Steel:
This string material is best for folk players because it produces very soft mellow tones that sound calmer and are easier on the player’s fingers. The D’Addario light gauge and Ernie Ball Earthwood acoustic guitar string are recommended examples of this innovative string material.
The Brass acoustic guitar string material produces bright notable sounds that are particular to metallic rhythms.
Finally, the choice which a guitarists makes when picking an acoustic guitar string involves the playing styles, body style of the guitar, age of the guitar and what unique tones the player want to achieve from their acoustic guitar.