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Favorite strings for a Telecaster??

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by 19sixty3, Dec 2, 2020.

  1. 19sixty3

    19sixty3 TDPRI Member

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    Hey, all-- the question I have is what it says in the title. If you play a Telecaster, what strings do you use, and why?

    Just got a NOS 2011 American Standard and looking to replace the factory Fender strings soon-ish, just not sure what with! I had already replaced the old factory Fenders with a new set of Fender strings. But even after 10 hours of play? They are not for me.

    The 2011 American Standards has a very nice single-coil neck pickup. Sounds more substantial, kind of fatter sounding than the traditional Tele neck pickup. Great for blues. The bridge pickup has to my ears less twang than most other Tele pickups I know. Still a Telecaster, but kinda more compressed. I like them.

    Anyway, I am looking for strings something vintage-punchy, if that makes sense...?)

    Thank you all in advance for your inputs and advice...:)
     
  2. 68tele

    68tele Friend of Leo's

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    I have been using GHS Nickel Rockers for years...semi-flats, feel good, less finger noise - can twang but not overly-sproingy
     
  3. Gevalt

    Gevalt Tele-Meister

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    NYXL. I couldn't get twangy with pure nickel, and these are the highest quality without being over-engineered to shrill highs like I got on some more upscale sets.
     
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  4. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I like D’Addario XLs.
    The last a little longer than Ernie Ball and GHS, IMO.
    They also never have rust or kinks.
    They’ve been my go-to for decades.
     
  5. KirbyBarba

    KirbyBarba TDPRI Member

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    I've tried too many strings and gauges. I finally settled on Fender pure nickel 10s. Because they're cheap and work well enough on all my guitars. Find the "perfect" string (and anything else) turned into a rabbit hole due to my personality. I'm firmly in the "good enough" camp these days though it takes concerted effort.
     
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  6. Billy3

    Billy3 Tele-Meister

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    I like EB Slinkys. 9-42. Old trusty. I have recently been playing with their pure nickel version and love their old school sound. The only problem is they don't last very long. It's frustrating because they sound so good but I have to change them more often. But man, they do have that vintage quality. It's what most electric players had to use back in the day. I wonder what some of the greats would choose if they had the options we have today. Maybe we would be going through a different rabbit hole. That being said. A decent set of strings is a decent set of strings. So many out there now. I think amps and effects are just as crucial in getting "that" sound as your strings. Those pure nickel ones are great though. Why can't they just last longer. Lol. Anyway. Keep on pickin!!!
     
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  7. wabashslim

    wabashslim Friend of Leo's

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    Whatever's cheap on juststrings.com. But no Black Diamonds :rolleyes:
     
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  8. NoTeleBob

    NoTeleBob Tele-Meister

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    The equivalent thread to "What oil should I use" in an automotive forum!
     
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  9. Greggorios

    Greggorios Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Old faithful's...

    [​IMG]
     
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  10. srblue5

    srblue5 Tele-Meister

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    I liked D'Addario NYXLs for a while on my G&L ASAT Classic but I switched to the regular XLs because they were cheaper. I sometimes kinda miss the tone I got during my NYXL era (though there are other variables that probably also factor into that sound) but I'm not sure I want to go back to them, especially since the XLs are readily available in a pinch.

    For my Vintera Modified '50s Tele, I use the D'Addario Pure Nickels. Gets me a little warmth and vintage-y tone and they seem to last long enough (although I'm notorious for liking it when my strings go dead).

    11-49 is the gauge for me. I'd probably play faster/better on 10s but the adrenaline at gigs (four score and seven years ago...) makes me pull them out of tune or break them easily.
     
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  11. buster poser

    buster poser Tele-Afflicted Platinum Supporter

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    Ernie 11s for a couple years when I came back to guitars after 20 years off, I think it was good for my hand strength early on.

    Last year or so though... Ernie 9s, same as when I was a kid in the 80s. I think about trying a new set every so often, but the guitar is just perfectly set up for those strings now and I do not want to mess with its chi by experimenting with anything that's got a different pull.
     
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  12. darkwaters

    darkwaters Friend of Leo's

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    D'Addario 11s for me. I tried 10s, and they certainly made the guitar easier to play, but I missed the beef, so back to 11s I went. I tried 9s once and I couldn't get them off the guitar fast enough. I may have to return to 10s some day, if my hands start to give me trouble, but so far, so good.
     
  13. charlie chitlin

    charlie chitlin Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    In the words of the immortal Bob Newhart...
    Stop....it....

     
  14. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yup!
    I have only one of each- a Strat, Tele, Dano, SG and all 4 guitars ( and my ears and fingers) LOVE these strings! (10-46 on all)

    I used to go between these, EB Regular Slinkys, Fender Nickels/Bullets, and GHS Boomers, but anymore, the D'Addarios are consistent/bright/hold their tuning

    * change strings after say, 3 gigs and never break any
     
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  15. JL_LI

    JL_LI Friend of Leo's

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    D’addario XT coated nickel plated strings for me. The coating tames the highs. I use 11’s on my Telecaster and 10’s on my Strats. I play mostly finger style and the timbre is pretty even across the strings. I don’t care how much they cost. I can’t account for more than the cost of strings at the end of the week.
     
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  16. 19sixty3

    19sixty3 TDPRI Member

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    That's pretty funny))

    I had to think about it a bit first, but thanks for your opinion, and I agree if you should have meant everything can't be in perfect harmony between guitar, strings, pickups, amp, cab, and room. And me!

    But, being serious about what you guys think, prefer, and why? I appreciate the contributions that have been received so far. Strings have already been mentioned that I haven't had on my screen for years or have never played myself. For myself, and I hope for others too, very interesting to learn something new!
     
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  17. jfgesquire

    jfgesquire Tele-Afflicted

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    My 50s Classic Vibe with A3 pickups gets D'Addarios 9-42 NPS (nickel plated steel)

    My partscaster rendition of a '63 Tele with a neck P90 gets Fender pure nickel 10-46.

    My Squier Vintage Modified SSH with two stacks and a mini hum gets the D'Addario 9.5-44 NPS

    And my 51 Nocaster Partscaster currently under construction will be getting GHS Brite Flats, 12-52 ground round wound nickel alloy. I found that these strings are the closest in construction to the original 1951 OEM strings, what Leo put on at the factory.
     
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  18. telleutelleme

    telleutelleme Telefied Silver Supporter

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    What everyone else says. XL10's.
     
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  19. unixfish

    unixfish Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I started with D'Addario 10's, switched to Ernie Ball 10's, then settled on Ernie Ball 11's. I want to go down a gauge, but I really like the positive feel and feedback from a set of 11s.
     
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  20. Cali Dude

    Cali Dude Tele-Holic

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    I really like the Elixir Nanowebs. I use the 10s. They stay fresh much longer than anything else I have tried.
     
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