String Feel Discussion

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by GuitaristCPA, Feb 19, 2020.

  1. GuitaristCPA

    GuitaristCPA TDPRI Member

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    Hello all,

    I realize bringing up strings is such a subjective topic that it borders on uselessness, but I would like to hear some others' opinions on the topic.

    I'm less concerned about gauge and more about feel. I've typically used EB Slinky's 10, and for the first few days I hate the way they feel. But after a week they settle in very nicely and I feel like I can play with more freedom, even my sliding is less "slippery". The worn in feeling of them is great.

    Is this something anyone else experiences?

    Does anyone have any good string options that just feel "broken in" right our of the pack?
     
  2. kingofdogs1950

    kingofdogs1950 Tele-Holic

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    Hard to beat Slinky's 10s.
    They are very good strings and have a good feel.
    I've used them since the early '70s.
    I occasionally try other brands but end up back with the EBs.

    Mark
     
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  3. dreamingtele

    dreamingtele Friend of Leo's

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    I like the overall feel of 10's.. but when the store I went to ran out of 10's, I bought the next step up, 11's.. I dont like how 9's feel on a telecaster.. so I thought, might as well try 11's.. and never looked back..

    ever since, I put 11-49's on teles/strats.. and 11-52's on shorter gibson scale (24.75") or any other scale shorter than 25.5"... I just like the stiffness of 11's, and it feels like the guitar is fighting back, which I like..

    to get a really good action with 11's, I had the frets levelled, and had a new bone nut cut specifically for 11-49's.. so it's still low, but not shred low as I really like to dig in..
     
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  4. ieatlions

    ieatlions Tele-Meister

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    I can’t play lower than 10’s. I’m heavy handed so 9’s are no good. I over bend and break them easily.

    I play D‘adario EXL110+ 10.5 - 48 on my Les Paul and currently D’adario 10’s my Tele.

    I know people say string gauge doesn’t make a difference to sound, but it really does, you have more mass there. Not going to debate if the differences are positive or negative. That is truly subjective. But, I’m firm that it makes a difference.

    As far as that broken in feel goes, I haven’t felt any difference from one brand to the next to be honest. I use D’adario’s because they sound better for longer and never break!
     
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  5. Si G X

    Si G X Tele-Holic

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    For me almost all uncoated nickel plated round wounds feel pretty much the same. I've switched between Ernie Ball, Rotosound, GHS etc. and there's not a noticeable difference in the way they feel under the finger to me. I agree that they have an initial 'breaking in' period for the 'worn in' feel.
     
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  6. dougstrum

    dougstrum Tele-Afflicted

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    Slinky 10's are my string of choice; though other brands are fine.
    Used to use 11's many years ago when my
    fingers were younger:rolleyes:
    9's are way too light for me; they don't have any push back.
    Gauge seems to be the major factor in how strings feel.
     
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  7. 8trackmind

    8trackmind Tele-Holic

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    I'm enjoying the newish Ernie Ball 10 1/2' to 44's.
     
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  8. Macrogats

    Macrogats Friend of Leo's

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    Slinky 10’s. Love my EB’s.
     
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  9. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    I think it's mostly gauge that determines feel - strings are a metal wire, if they are the same composition and diameter, what's the difference between brands?
    But I really, really have become a fan of the Dimarzio "balanced tension" sets in 10s or 11s - they beef up the B and A strings a bit from the standard, and it just (to me) evens out the volume and the bend-ability in a way that feels right to me. It's a small difference but something I notice, especially the firmer-feeling B string.
     
  10. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Same here, gauge = feel. I don't notice brands. I tried for a while, and now I just keep it simple: D'Addario EXL110 on every darn thing, short scale, long scale, tiny Jag scale even. I never think about it.
     
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  11. scooteraz

    scooteraz Friend of Leo's

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    I’m now going to be thinking about string feeling for quite a while; I didn’t realize until this thread they had feelings.


    Okay, okay, on a serious note, I like the feel of 10s about the second day.
     
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  12. cometazzi

    cometazzi Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    I have tendonitis which is sometimes a deal-killer for me when playing guitar. I don't generally get pain from it, but when it gets aggravated I end up getting weakness, fast fatigue and loss of dexterity. Prior to this, I really liked the tone of D'Addario Chrome Flatwound 11s on my strat for surf stuff.

    But since then, I go 9s on all Fender scale length guitars, either D'Addario or Ernie Ball. On 'Gibson-scale' guitars I up it to 10s, but to be honest I find the tension a little tough sometimes. When I have the weakness I struggle to make proper bends and doing barre chords can really start whacking my dexterity.

    I have two bass guitars. One is an active Fender Precision Special, and it gets DR Hi-Beams for a very intense, modern tone. The (passive) Squier Vintage Modified Precision has D'Addario Chrome Flats (I forget the gauge) and that is a match made in heaven. I pretty much never play the active bass, because the tone and feel of the flats on a passive bass is sooo good. It just feels 'right'.
     
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  13. toomuchfun

    toomuchfun Tele-Afflicted

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    Like the majority, I'm a fan of EB Slinky's 10 and consider D‘adario EXL's very similar.

    I think it's the nickel winding that gives that feel I like. When I try brands with different material I immediately feel the difference.
     
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  14. Mikesk

    Mikesk TDPRI Member

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    Another vote for D'Addario 10's, I had a set on one of my guitars for almost a year, with quite heavy use, they never really sounded dull or worn, I debated for weeks whether or not to change them, good thing I did, the divits in all the strings from the frets were so deep.

    After a week of the bright break in, it sounded and felt the same. 6 months later, still sound and feel great. So now I buy them in bulk
     
  15. Cesspit

    Cesspit Tele-Holic

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    I used EB 11s for years until arthritis kicked in about 18 months ago. Now using 10 on Fenders, still 11s on Gibson. I like new strings, almost like playing a new guitar. As for feel, well I've never really thought about it.
    I like the guitar to fight back a little which is why PRS guitars don't work for me, just to easy to play. I've never been fussy about neck size or radius, I have my preferences but I guess I've learnt to play round any issues. Maybe that's why this strings feel topic has never entered my head.
     
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  16. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I’m a heavier string fan.
    I like the sound and feel of D’Addarrio XL 11 and 12 sets.
    I also like the feel of GHS EJ 11s on my Strat.
    For bass strings, I love Thomastik/Infeld flatwounds.
    They feel “soft” and are effortless to plY.
     
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