Phosphor Bronze vs 80/20 Bronze

Discussion in 'Acoustic Heaven' started by WrayGun, Jul 15, 2021.

  1. aging_rocker

    aging_rocker Friend of Leo's

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    Ernie Ball Earthwood Light Gauge Phosphor-Bronze for me these days.

    I have a new set in the case waiting to go on - I don't know how long the current set have been on but it's 'a while'...
     
  2. rand z

    rand z Friend of Leo's

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    My experience playing acoustically (mostly) for the last 40 years:

    Phosphor Bronze are not as bright as 80/20; and lose their tone after a gig or two.

    80/20 are brighter, last longer (not a lot) and, generally, are a bit cheaper, $$ if you change strings often.

    And, I do.

    I used to use the PB all of time 25 years ago.

    Now, I'm an 80/20 guy.

    I actually like like the brighter sound for what I do.

    (However, it does depend on the individual guitar; and whether you mostly strum, finger-pick or play leads/fills.)

    imo.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2021
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  3. LPTyler

    LPTyler Tele-Meister

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    I think the 80/20 are much more metallic and harsh sounding. I accidentally got a box of these recently and didn’t realize it until I switched them and started playing. I couldn’t figure out why it sounded so bad, I normally love the sound of new strings. I then looked at the box and realized my error.

    Unfortunately it’s a three pack too, but I will use them anyway. They do sound better after a few days, they lose a lot of the harshness they have when brand new.
     
  4. FMA

    FMA Poster Extraordinaire

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    The guitar plays a role in the decision. On my J-45, 80-20s sound best to my ears. PBs, which I had used for years on other guitars, sounded dull and middy. But my rosewood Songwriter likes PBs. Just try some out, give them a few days to break in, and your ears will tell you what the guitar wants. On another guitar, a Breedlove, spruce over hog, all solid, PBs sounded so awful I couldn't wait to get them off of it. 80-20s did the trick.
     
  5. AJBaker

    AJBaker Friend of Leo's

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    Phosphor bronze to me sounds richer and more musical, I prefer it.
     
  6. Mark the Moose

    Mark the Moose Tele-Afflicted

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    PB feels like it has a little less treble and bass, touch more mids than the 80/20. On my dreadnought I like PB, on my GA I like 80/20.
     
  7. uriah1

    uriah1 Telefied Gold Supporter

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    Depends...PB to me are warmer.

    Actually, the Nickels I have used (NB) have sounded most natural..
    softer on fingers
     
  8. telepraise

    telepraise Tele-Afflicted

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    This has been my experience as well. Your Taylor is already a bright guitar, my preference would be for phosphor bronze. A dread likes beefier strings to get that big top moving. I would go with medium gauge or at least "true medium".
     
  9. Controller

    Controller Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Just went through this. I like very bright so YMMV. I have used D'Addario Phosphor Bronze for many years and like them a lot. I decided to try the D'Addario 80/20s with the promised brightness. They were very dull right away compared to the years-old Phosphor Bronze strings that just came off.

    I seriously considered pulling off the 80/20s. A couple days later I tried them again and they had brightened up a lot. Never had this happen before. They are fine now but I think I will go back to the Phosphor Bronze next time.
     
  10. northernguitar

    northernguitar Friend of Leo's

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    That makes no sense.

    #psychoacoustics
     
  11. Controller

    Controller Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Never had it happen before, no explanation.

    I will say that I hear things somewhat differently on different days but never anything that dramatic. No amp involved.
     
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