Interesting video by Rick Beato about string gauge.

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Thin white duke, Jan 26, 2020.

  1. Stratospheric

    Stratospheric TDPRI Member

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    I’m not sold on any 1 gauge of string. Some guitars just seem to setup or play better with different gauges. I like 11’s on my fender guitars, but I have one partscaster strat that would setup better with 10’s, so that’s how I keep it. I’ve got 12 gauge flat wounds on a 335 for finger style jazz (not much bending!) and round wound 10’s on another 335 which I like for funky bluesy stuff. I like being able to mix it up when I feel like it. As far as string gauge affecting the tone... its just another tiny variable.
     
  2. 2 Headed Goat

    2 Headed Goat Friend of Leo's

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    2:10 time mark...

     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2020
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  3. MattyK-USA

    MattyK-USA Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    Well, that was an entertaining read! I was also entertained by Rick's video (he really is entertaining and informative, and is rarely selling anything). Nothing I saw would make me change my mind about what gauge strings I play, though.

    FWIW I also play 10's and it has zip, zilch, nada to do with tone. They all sound the same to me, once I'm done dialing everything in. My issue with light gauge strings is that I guess I have a touch like a gorilla - I bend things out of tune with a simple barre, and tend to over-bend in the 12-20 fret range. I don't have that problem with 10's, and I just assume that that's what I've become calibrated to over 40+ years of playing. I've never tried heavier gauges (except for acoustic but that's a fox in a different henhouse), because I just don't feel the need to - there's nothing I want to change there.
     
  4. 2 Headed Goat

    2 Headed Goat Friend of Leo's

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    Diff strokes for diff folk IMB...
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2020
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  5. NewKid

    NewKid Tele-Holic

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    12s on my acoustic are light gauge so 11s on my Teles feel comfortable to me.

    I did try 12 flat wounds on my Tele for jazz fingerstyle and they were fine but 11 round wounds were better for me.

    I have 10s on my Strat and can’t tell a big difference.

    Maybe when my hands get weaker I’ll go down to 10s on my Teles. Actually, I get the same tension relief with 11s tuning down a half step to Eb.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2020
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  6. L.A. Mike

    L.A. Mike Tele-Afflicted

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    SRV (was mentioned in the thread) would start a tour with 12s or 13s. But they quickly tore his fingertip calluses off. So he start going smaller as the tour went on.
    Not that I'm a fan of big strings.
    I think adjusting the amp a little bit makes most string gauges sound more or less the same.
    So, it's really a personal preference.
    Like picks. I use Fender Jazz picks that are small. My friends don't understand how I can hold on to them. I can't play with big picks.
    I also love to use my right had fingers to play without a pick and enjoy fingerpicking. But, can't play long blues rock type solos without a pick.
    Like I said, it appears to be personal preference.
     
  7. MrClint

    MrClint Tele-Holic

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    The only way these videos are of any value to me is if they offer information that helps me play better. I'm not sure that lighter strings help in that regard. Also, I didn't pick up much of a difference in tone between the different strings. Maybe I have cloth ears? These videos are definitely getting views and are making the message board rounds. At the end of the day that is their purpose.

    I tend to just stick with whatever strings I had on when the guitar was setup. I have a guitar that came with 9's out of the box, it plays nicely, I like it a lot but I don't think I play better on it because it can bend like Gumby. If anything I might bend too often with it. Hard to say. I have much bigger issues to deal with in order to play better to be honest.
     
  8. Si G X

    Si G X Tele-Holic

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    In a studio environment, I'd be open to trying different strings for a particular sound but for live (and just playing with friends or whatever) I need them to feel 'right', stay in tune and not to break on me. I don't really care what tonal properties they have.
     
  9. nvilletele

    nvilletele Friend of Leo's

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    Nobody else using 10.5’s? That’s the sweet spot for me.
     
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  10. Larmo63

    Larmo63 Friend of Leo's

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    The difference between string sizes is microscopic.

    I just put a set of Ernie Ball 9-42 Paradigm Super Slinky strings on my new-to-me '52 AV Tele yesterday, and I really like them! I'm surprised.

    I never, ever bought a set of EB strings in my life, but our really lame "music store" here in town had about 15 sets of acceptable guitar strings on their wall for sale.
     
  11. cyclopean

    cyclopean Friend of Leo's

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    ********. lighter strings just buzz and go sharp all the time. and heavier strings sound nicer on every guitar i've had more than one gauge of strings on.
     
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  12. Bob M

    Bob M Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

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    It was an interesting video as was Rhett Shull's follow up. I played 10s for years on all my electrics. I have a hand injury which is not cooperating as I get older. As a result I went down to a 9.5 set. The 9s are just too sloppy for a hack like me. The 9.5s are just a bit more comfortable than the 10s and for my "style" work well. I'm not necessarily convinced of the tonal differences. I'm more concerned with comfort.
     
  13. Hatfield92

    Hatfield92 Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    This video was a complete waste of my time, because you have three guys all playing basically the same style, tone... HIGH gain. I never ever try to sound like that.

    Excuse me, gotta go use some listerine now.
     
  14. bgmacaw

    bgmacaw Friend of Leo's

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    After years of experimenting, I kind of settled on 10's for standard tuning, 11's for dedicated slide setups in open G or D and flatwound 12's or 13's in open or standard C tuning.
     
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  15. KT89

    KT89 Tele-Meister

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    Tone is in the hands and my hands like to dig in a bit so I'll stick to 10s. 9's feel too sensitive and delicate to me. I can't hear a difference though honestly.
     
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  16. Thin white duke

    Thin white duke Tele-Afflicted

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    I agree, to me it's not about the tone which i like with the 0.11 but i'm curious to see if with the 0.10 i can still play the way i play without changing, i'm pretty sure i won't feel that much difference in sound between the two gauges
     
  17. 57fenderstrat

    57fenderstrat Tele-Holic

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    I like 10-48 on my strat and tele, The David Gilmour ones. I love David Gilmour but I didn’t end up buying his set for his name it was because it was a nice compromise between using 9s, 10s or 10-52. I like to play the guitar alittle hard and I want some string tension to avoid going sharp, I want my electric to be more stable and similar in response to my acoustic guitar strings. I could play a 9 set if I wanted to focus on having a lighter touch but I’m pretty happy with the 10s. On the David Gilmour set the g string is a 16 compared to the standard 17 size in a set of tens. I think the smaller g string helps with the string to string balance on vintage style staggered pickups. I think when the g string is too big on my strat they seem too loud and stick out too much.

    I love Rick and Rhett but I think Rick would be happy if he puppetmastered all his friends into switching to 8s haha.

    I guess whatever gauge works for you and your tunings and style is best but there are probably a lot of people who use heavy strings as an excuse to not address poor techniques of bashing and using excess force on the guitar, myself included.
     
  18. trxx

    trxx Tele-Afflicted

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    I recently revisited my views on strings. I had compared string brands and gauges many years ago and settled in on GHS boomers 10's. I rechallenged that recently and decided that D'Addario 10's are just as good. After my sets of 10's run out, I plan to revisit 9's.
     
  19. kennl

    kennl Tele-Afflicted

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    You cannot state that this or that is "better" and then demonstrate your theory with a distortion sound
    Ted Greene, in the video in Post #42 came to exactly the OPPOSITE conclusion, because he did not use a distorted sound
    I've always thought Rick Beato's clean sound was "plinky" and suspected light gauges - now confirmed
    Use what works for you, but NOBODY sounds good out-of-tune. I've spent a lot of time on stage between songs waiting for guys with .008" sets to tune up.
    I use .011" roundwounds on most guitars, and .012" flats on a few.
    Next time you restring, tune the 5th string down to E and the 6th string up to A.
    That's effectively the difference between an Ernie Ball .008" and .011" set
    Play a chord and notice the sustain and overtones. Then tune normally and play again. You will hear what different tension on the same string does to the tone.
     
  20. Nick Fanis

    Nick Fanis Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Just use the classic 010-038 set everyone used back in the day and call it a day.
    If we want to talk about "better" this is it.
    Especially for teles and strats.

    :)
     
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