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Anyone know anything about Guitar Strings?


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My daughter just started Guitar - doing pretty well so far, but I know nothing about the equipment - except it's loads cheaper than violins. The Guitar we bought has 3 nylon and 3 metal strings - there is a huge difference in timber going from the metal to the nylon. What are the good brands of strings and set up - it's a fairly inexpensive "half" sized guitar.

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Hi DR.S,

D'Addario and Savarez make one of the best string for classical guitars.Ask for carbone fibre strings for more clear and projective sound.Alliance and New Cristal of Savarez work fine.

I suppose that the strings you think as metal are in fact nylon core or CF core too .D,A and E strings are just metal wrapped.

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I think Stephan's right; there's always going to be a little difference in timbre between the wrapped and solid strings, but the bottom 3 strings are likely wire-wrapped synthetics and not steel. I hope so since steel strings on a classical guitar can pull the bridge right off, or at least cause bowing of the top; I've seen it happen to a friend's guitar! I agree with Stephan's recommendations; I've always had good luck with Savarez strings on my guitar and know people who swear by D'Addario. When you replace the strings, I would recommend taking a good look at how they're tied at the bridge. To me it was a little non-intuitive and it took several changes before I had the knot down. Good luck! -Steve

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I started on a smaller guitar when I was 13. I didn't move into a full size guitar until I was in college. You didn't mention whether you daughter was playing classical or folk guitar, so a real discussion on strings is a bit hard. Classical guitar uses nylon strings, while folk/rock uses the steel variants. It is, however quite common to find nylon strings on a smaller guitar simply because it is much easier on a beginner's fingertips. I would hope she is taking lessons, in which case, her teacher would be best suited to determine which strings are best for her. I wouldn't stress over it just yet. Once she moves into a full sized guitar, then she can play with which strings work for her. Just like different strings sound differently on every violin, the same holds true for guitars. I have D'Addarios on my guitar right now, but I have used Martin in the past.

BTW - Martin makes a pick that has a little handle type area on it. It makes it easier to hold for a beginner. I like to use them when I play in hot weather so the sweat won't make the pick slide out of my hand. The only drawbacks are: 1)They break easily, and 2)They are hard to find.

My parents played guitar as well. One of the tips they gave me when I started was to rub my fingertips over progressively courser sandpaper to built up the callouses faster. Start with 220 grit and work your way down. Have her do it while watching tv or relaxing. It really does work, just make sure she does this gently!

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