If you’re in a hurry, and before we get into more detail about what to look for to find the best acoustic guitar strings for your instrument, lets have a quick look at our top 5 strings that we feel would are the highest quality and are most often picked by acoustic guitarists. For more information on all 5 of these acoustic guitar strings, just skip to the end of the article.
Features to Look for in Guitar Strings
Longevity is the most important aspect of a set of guitar strings. The longer a set of strings lasts, the less money you will have to spend over time buying new sets to replace the old, worn out sets. Longevity is a relative term–not all strings will last the same; some will erode much quicker than others, and some will require actual maintenance in order to preserve them.
Coated strings are a relatively new concept. Within the last fifteen years, strings have been made with a variety of coatings, each of which is designed to preserve the feel and integrity of the string. Coated strings are less likely to erode quickly and are more likely to last the longest in terms of breakage–without erosion, breakage becomes a matter of force rather than fragility. Coated strings do tend to have a different feel to them than non-coated strings, and some can take getting used to due to their waxy texture.
Nickel wound strings
Nickel wound strings are the most common and most used strings available to date. They are cheaper than their coated counterparts, as they are cheaper to produce. The problem with uncoated nickel wound strings is that they tend to rust fairly quickly if proper care is not taken of them; most guitarists wipe their strings with a microfiber cloth after each playing session to avoid the salts and oils from their fingers eating away at the strings and causing rust. Some even use special solvents and solutions to keep their strings sounding crisp and preserve them even longer.
The gauge of the string set has a potentially large impact on the strings’ lifespan. For players who tend to use more force, or bend their notes more sharply, lighter gauged strings may have a tendency to snap quicker than heavier gauged strings. A string gauge that is too thick will last much longer, but will not allow for good vibrato or resonation, as the thicker strings will require too much effort to fret.
Top Choice Acoustic Strings
So which acoustic guitar strings are the best acoustic guitar strings for you? Picking the perfect string set is going to be a process; personal taste plays a large role in finding that ‘magic’ set suitable for your acoustic guitar needs. String gauge, and the choice of coating (or no coating at all) will come down to player preference, however there are a handful of player’s choice strings that are renowned not only for their crisp sound and pleasant feel, but also for their top quality. Any of the following string sets will be a great starting point and comparison point in your search for the perfect acoustic guitar string set.
5 of the Best Acoustic Guitar Strings
Now let’s have a look at the top 5 acoustic guitar strings that we have chosen in more detail.