PB vs 80/20

Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by uriah1, Aug 6, 2020.

  1. uriah1

    uriah1 Telefied Gold Supporter

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    Ya, I know this has been done forever on this site and the Acoustic forum, but, thought
    I would give another go around.

    I am going back to brighter strings. Been using NB for the last 2 years that are very natural,
    but, it tends to keep my J45's on the darker side.

    Trying to liven things up a tad.

    Tks

    I think I found concensus was PB over 80/20
     
  2. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I indeed prefer phosphor bronze.
    I used 80/20, or GHS Bright Bronze in my youth.
    I now prefer “punch” to “clang”, if that makes sense.
    I also now prefer medium to light gauge.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2020
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  3. Dreadnut

    Dreadnut Tele-Afflicted

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    DA PB EJ19's.
     
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  4. gregulator450

    gregulator450 Tele-Afflicted

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    If you haven't tried the Ernie Ball Aluminum Bronze, it might be worth a go. They are very crisp and clear without being overly bright. They are my current favorite.
     
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  5. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Poster Extraordinaire

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    Just me.
    I'm a John Pearse strings fan and I love both their Phosphor Bronze and 80/20 lights.

    I find both to sound similar on both of my guitars ( a Martin D, and a Blueridge 000) after 3-4 hours of play. They sound warm and bright and plenty of volume.

    They both last long enough for me, which is a few weeks of daily home playing or 3 gigs. ( that's my 'longevity rule'- change all strings while they are still alive ')

    But I like the 80/20's because the alloy produces a little less string tension, and some nice 'give' on string bending/fretting/vibrato. Comfy and no volume loss- expressive!

    So I will change up between these 2 string types on either guitar, depending on gig type, or how my left hand ( 45 years of playing- pain/stuffiness) is feeling.

    * I have tried both Martin and D'Addario 80/20's ( as I do play their Phosphor Bronze lights, mainly the Martin's now), but they just don't have the tone and feel of the Pearse strings (IMO)
    They sound brash/zingy to me, and just not as comfy on the fingers.

    So Pearse, either alloy are my #1's, just quality strings.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2020
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  6. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    "PB",

    They're making strings from lead?


    I don't play acoustic nearly as much as I do electrics, so the strings stay on my acoustics a long time. Plain strings, whether PB or 80/20, tend to go grungy all by themselves over time, so I've switched to coated strings and have been playing them for about 10 years now.

    Yeah, they do have a certain dullness to their tone (they lack that zing), but unlike uncoated strings that are nice and zingy and then go dull from corrosion, the tone of the coated strings is far more consistent over the life of the strings. Daddario coated strings or Elixirs work for me.
     
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  7. KW1977

    KW1977 Tele-Meister

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    For a split second I genuinely thought I was opening a thread about sandwiches. Peanut Butter & Jelly or 80/20 Burger? Bahahahaha, no I'm not hungry.

    I'm not super tailored in my acoustic taste but have found that string preference can often times accompany the guitar & what kinda woods you're dealing with. for instance - spruce w/ rosewood back & sides, I tend to like 80/20. spruce w/ mahogany back & sides, phosphor bronze.
     
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  8. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Friend of Leo's

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    Since its been done forever you know my opinion that strings are one of the ways you CAN change the sound of your guitar (slightly) and that each person will like and want something different. I made up my mind a long time ago by trying different compositions back to back to back, recording them and listening to the clips, then trying coated strings back to back to back with the same composition uncoated strings and recording and listening to clips. I played each set until I thought they were "dead" and factor the cost per time and whether I can conveniently run down to my neighborhood music store and buy a replacement.

    The I factored in that I have a dozen acoustic guitars, some of them strung and tuned very differently from each other and I didn't want to stock a spare set of a dozen different brands and gauges and compositions. I've come up with compromises that fit my needs and I will argue that they are the right ones for me but they are probably completely wrong for anyone else. But its not hard to do your own comparisons and choose the right strings for YOU.
     
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  9. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I'm still in the 80/20 camp myself. My bluegrass friend uses these silver looking strings that I think have a French name on his Gypsy Jazz guitars? They are damn nice, and a bit unique sounding. But I like to change strings often so go for cheaper sets.
     
  10. stormin1155

    stormin1155 Tele-Holic

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    I've used PB for years, but lately discovered I like 80/20 better on my rosewood dreads better, especially those with ebony boards and bridges, as they tend to sound darker.
     
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  11. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    Manouche!


    [gesundheit!]
     
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  12. 985plowboy

    985plowboy Friend of Leo's

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    I played 80/20 when I first started and had no idea that there was anything else.
    Probably for ten years or so.
    Then a fella whose opinion I respect told me to try PB on a Takamine I had that was really bright sounding.

    So I did that for about fifteen years.
    On every guitar I own.

    I had my J-45 in for a pro setup recently and the luthier gave it back to me with a Martin “bluegrass” set of 80/20’s on it and said he thought I would like the sound of them better than the Daddario EJ-16 set I’d sent with the guitar.
    He was right!
    I put a set of 80/20 Martin on my J-100 as well and it’s never sounded better.
    Can’t believe I didn’t try them sooner.
     
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  13. Dreadnut

    Dreadnut Tele-Afflicted

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    No, lead is Pb. PB in this case is Phosphor Bronze.

    The EJ19 Bluegrass strings are nice in that the 4 wound strings are mediums, but the top two strings are a bit lighter. Excellent for fingerpicking on my dreadnoughts.

    So I also have a Loar (inexpensive) 000 model; I put some Phosphor/Silk strings on it and what fun! Nice for fingerpicking Blues in E, etc.
     
  14. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Friend of Leo's

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    Could be Thomastik-Infeld, except they come from Austria

    https://www.thomastik-infeld.com/en/home

    My jazz playing friends have convinced me to use the flat wounds on my jazz guitar and this is the one exception to not having special strings for each guitar. Expensive, yes, but I don't change them very often and I never break a string,
     
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