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The 10 Best Acoustic Guitar Strings 2019 Updated

The design of guitars, either acoustic or electric, is mainly conditioned by the structural requirements. The performance of any guitar depends on the structural integrity of the strings.

How often you change your strings depends on a number of factors, such as playing styles, playing frequency, sweat, and how the dead strings affect your performance.

Professional guitarists prefer to change their guitar strings before every gig. For acoustic guitar players, we would recommend changing the strings once a week to once a month.

We find that sweat is the major culprit as far as string deterioration is concerned. If you have sweaty hands, you should consider changing your strings every so often.

The choice of good acoustic guitar strings is huge in today’s market. We get that, and that’s why we have gathered ten of the finest products from different brands for your selection.

Top 10 Acoustic Guitar Strings

#1 QINGGE Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

If you want to maximize the relationship between string vibrations and pick up on your acoustic guitar, you should look no further than the QINGGE strings.

These strings are designed from high-quality steel. The durability of the steel material is assured with an anti-rust coating that is not only smooth but also durable.

The available string sizes/gauges in millimeters include 1.25, 1.03, 0.80, 0.61, 0.40, and 0.30. And the strings are available in two complete sets and six additional strings.

Colored strings are quite helpful, especially for beginner guitarists. They help the player remember while practicing.

Regardless of the fact that they are made of steel, the QINGGE guitar strings come with a six-month guaranteed warranty.

Things We Like:

  • They’re inexpensive
  • Made of high quality, durable steel
  • Feature anti-rust coating for protection from elements
  • Colored strings help a beginner to remember easily
  • A six-month guaranteed warranty available

Things We Don’t Like:

  • Some of the strings may break during setup
  • Bronze color may fade away

#2 D’Addario EJ16-3D Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

If you are in the market for the most consistent acoustic guitar strings, you should look no further than the D’Addario EJ16-3D.

These strings have a precision wound and they are hexagonally shaped. They feature a high carbon steel core that offers bright sounding and long lasting tones with brilliant intonation.

Wrap wire alloys used have a substantial effect on the total performance of the string as well as the overall sound quality of your playing style.

D’Addario uses both coated and uncoated alloys with 80/20 phosphor bronze, and nickel bronze. This combination gives you a distinctive tone.

The phosphor bronze wire that is drawn around the high carbon steel core is highly corrosion resistant. This ensures long-lasting and consistent tonality.

Things We Like:

  • High carbon steel core generates long-lasting tones with superior intonation
  • Wrap wire alloys produce good sound quality with different playing styles
  • Phosphor bronze wire is highly corrosion resistant
  • Comes with all the important string gauges you may need
  • Great for fingerpicking, blues, and folk
  • Available in four different size packs

Things We Don’t Like:

  • May receive a fake package of D’Addario strings

#3 Elixir Strings 80/20 Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

There is no better acoustic guitar string replacement than Elixir. These strings are designed to offer a more traditional texture as well as smooth feel.

Most of the guitar strings are wound and any debris or particles will get trapped between the windings. This kills the tones and reduces the great response you need from a guitar.

The Elixir strings have a cord over the entire string that acts as a physical barrier, preventing debris from getting in between the windings.

Elixir strings feature a unique technology known as NANOWEB coating, which has a unique feel. The coating is sleek and it is easier to move up and down the string.

These strings have one of the finest corrosion protection in the industry. The signature anti-rust plating on the strings will effectively defy the elements.

Things We Like:

  • NANOWEB coating prevents debris accumulation on the windings
  • Unique string construction offers a traditional texture and uncoated feel
  • Anti-rust planting offers superior corrosion protection
  • Patented coating reduces sweat as well as noisy finger squeak
  • Higher copper content improves performance and durability

Things We Don’t Like:

  • The D string may break if the package is defective

#4 Martin SP Acoustic Guitar Strings

If you are in search of maximum tone quality and longevity, you should look no further than the Martin SP Acoustic Guitar Strings.

These strings are designed from a composition alloy of 92/8 to provide you with longevity, clarity, and brilliance of sound you need.

These are very bright sounding strings not only in the low end but in the high end as well. It is not only great for rhythms, but also for solos and duos.

However, the strings will bite a lot, due to the special bronze coating that the manufacturer has put on the strings. The coating adds a lot of brightness and it is also very quick to the touch.

The phosphor bronze winding alloy is suitable for producing acoustic guitar strings that give bright, clear trebles and rich, deep basses.

Things We Like:

  • These uniquely designed strings are coiled to precise specs
  • Wrap and core wires have met strict performance requirements
  • Phosphor bronze winding produces bright, clear trebles, and rich, deep basses
  • Bright sounding both in the low and high end

Things We Don’t Like:

  • Package may miss the E string

#5 Gibson Masterbuilt Premium Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

Gibson Masterbuilt Strings feature more clarity and projection than conventional bronze strings. They provide enhanced corrosion resistance.

Phosphor bronze strings are designed with Gibson high-quality cores and bronze wound wires that deliver more distinct lows along with crisp brilliant highs.

Gibson patented technology will bring a new sound to your acoustic guitar. They are the dynamic and expressive strings you have been looking for.

When we tested these strings, they seemed more defined and warmer than most brands we have tested. They don’t seem to be subdued like some cheap models you will find in the market.

Things We Like:

  • These strings are American made from authentic materials
  • Available in light, medium, super ultra-lights, and ultra-lights variations
  • Provides your acoustic guitar with sustained warmth and bright attack
  • Vacuum sealed sets ensure freshness as well as extended life

Things We Don’t Like:

  • May be affected by changes in temperature and humidity

#6 Ernie Ball 2146 Earthwood Medium Light Acoustic Guitar Strings

Do you want a high-performance string set that is proudly made in the United State? Look no further than the Ernie Ball 2146 Earthwood Medium Light Strings.

These high-performance strings are made up of three main components, including phosphorus, tin, and copper; copper having the largest percentage.

These acoustic guitar strings feature a gold, light orange color and they give a smooth, ringing sound with exceptional clarity.

The unique plain string construction comes with lock twists that do an amazing job of securing the wire surrounding the ball end. This helps to avoid slippage and improve string durability.

The Earthwood strings are precision coiled with phosphor bronze wire to deliver a balanced, warm tone with steady consistency and superior intonation.

Things We Like:

  • Made in the US with the freshest and finest materials
  • Element shield packaging ensures the strings stay fresh and durable
  • Available in 12-string light, medium light, extra light, rock, and blue
  • Phosphor bronze wrap wire is corrosion resistant
  • Earthwood phosphor bronze delivers warm, rich tones and superior clarity
  • All useful string gauges are available

Things We Don’t Like:

  • The G string may snap after tuning the guitar

#7 Bememo Guitar Strings Replacement for Acoustic Guitar

They may not be high-end strings, but the Bememo are among the finest acoustic guitar strings that come with an inexpensive price tag.

These strings are sold in two sets of six replacement steel strings for your acoustic guitar. There is the yellow set and the multicolor set.

The yellow set has four yellow and two silver strings; while the multicolor set has two silver strings and blue, brass, green, and rose red strings.

The six-string diameters in millimeters include: 1.2, 1, 0.7, 0.6, 0.3, and 0.2. The steel is coated with a practical, durable rustproof material.

These are very versatile guitar strings that will work on almost any standard acoustic instrument, including ace kids’ guitar.

Things We Like:

  • Very inexpensive price range
  • Available in two sets: yellow and multicolor sets
  • Colorful strings are suitable for a kid’s guitar
  • Highly visible strings that you can easily distinguish from one another

Things We Don’t Like:

  • One of the six strings may break when restringing

#8 Martin Authentic Acoustic Guitar Strings

Martin’s new lineup of strings, the Authentic Acoustic Strings, are some of the finest you will find in the market.

The new authentic acoustic SP lifespan 2.0 strings replace what used to be called the SP lifespan sets.

These strings apply Martin’s patented treatment process for increasing the life of the strings. The process creates both the core and wrap wires.

These uniquely made strings have much greater longevity in terms of the tone than untreated strings, and they really feel like standard strings.

The strings have a superior bright tone that does not sound thickly coated or harsh. The tension they provide is suitable for a light gauge.

Things We Like:

  • Designed from a durable proprietary alloy blend
  • Crafted using Martin’s patented technology for long-lasting durability
  • Give a bright tone that does not sound harsh
  • Offer superior playability, feel, and comfort
  • They respond more flexible when used on small guitars

Things We Don’t Like:

  • May not be suitable for heavy gauge

#9 Vibe Acoustic Guitar String Set

These amazing strings come in a small plastic packet with strings packaged in individual paper envelopes with respect to the thickness of the strings.

The strings inside are coiled up neatly. The envelopes are vacuum packed to protect the strings from environmental erosion.

These strings come with a high-quality construction that includes the US-made materials, plated stainless steel head, and round coiled phosphor bronze that’s wrapped over a steel core.

Each string is labeled separately. Therefore, you can easily identify each string when you are restringing.

These strings are bendable and they have a silky feel for a unique, sustaining a tone. They don’t need too much tuning, just a few tweaks and they are good to go.

Things We Like:

  • Vacuum packed to maintain corrosion resistance
  • Easily playable and deliver a superior dynamic range
  • Labeled individually for easy identification during restringing
  • Easy to configure, require only a few minor re-tunings
  • Bendable design offers a silky feel, sustain, and tone

Things We Don’t Like:

  • Defective strings may break during restringing

#10 John Pearse 600L Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

If you can find these strings locally grab a set, they are excellent for acoustic guitars. They are American made by John Pearse himself.

They are some of the most balanced sounding acoustic strings that we have had on an acoustic guitar. They aren’t cheaply coated; so, they can survive the elements.

These acoustic strings perform very well when used with either light or heavy gauge. You will be amazed by how fast the sound of your guitar will improve when you install these strings.

If you prefer finger picking, the John Pearse strings are your best bet. They seem to perform very well on the Grand Auditorium guitar. They bring out the warmth in higher notes.

Things We Like:

  • Suitable for both light and heavy gauge guitars
  • The superior anti-rust coating protects the strings from the elements
  • A good choice for finger picking
  • Give even tone, have great sustain, and they are louder
  • They suit almost any playing style

Things We Don’t Like:

  • The set may arrive with a missing string

Things to Consider when Buying Acoustic Guitar Strings

What are the differences among the wide variety of acoustic guitar strings available? There are a number of differences that exist among the various strings for acoustic guitars.

Some of the most significant differences that can help you make a profound buying decision are the materials used and how the strings are wound.

Different Windings of Acoustic Guitar Strings

The simplest kind of wound string is known as a round wound, which has a wire core with a round wire wrapping.

It has a very bright sound but also causes loud string whistle, the squeaking sound made in sliding the fingers of the left hand from one note to the next.

The flat wound string was created to reduce the whistle caused by the round wound. Flatwound strings are wound with flat wire ribbon.

They have an extremely well-centered and dull sound that seems not to be popular among many acoustic players.

The flat wound design appears to work better with electric guitar strings, particularly on instruments that are not meant to be played acoustically.

A compromise between these two designs is the half round string, engineered by milling the surface of a round wound almost smooth, to the extent that the inside of the winding is round and very flexible.

The outside of a half wound string is ground smooth in order to reduce the surface noise significantly. Half wound strings seem to be a reliable option.

String Material and Coating

Guitar strings fall into two main groups: nickel wound strings for electric guitars, and bronze wound strings for acoustic guitars.

  • Bronze Wound Strings

The strings that are most popular with acoustic guitars are generally referred to as bronze wound. However, most of them are actually brass.

Bronze is an alloy of copper and tin, while brass is an alloy of copper and zinc.

Most reputable brands label their strings with respect to the composition of the alloy, such as 80/20. Usually, 80% copper and 20% tin/zinc.

Normally, brighter sounding acoustic guitars have a slightly higher percentage of tin or zinc, such as an alloy of 60/40.

Some brands, such as Elixir are known to use true bronze materials, such as phosphor bronze, which contains 90 percent copper and 10 percent tin.

Phosphor bronze strings have an added fraction of phosphorous that seems to lengthen the lifespan of the strings. But, they are a lot more expensive.

  • Coated Strings

Some manufacturers, such as Elixir are known to coat their strings with their patented NANOWEB coating that protects the string from debris and rust.

However, you will have to keep away from coated strings, if you are the kind of player who admires very bright strings.

But coated strings are the best for an acoustic guitarist who likes a warm, dull sound. These strings will maintain their warm, dull sound through their entire lifespan.

Coating on guitar strings helps to reduce squeaks. Not to mention how easy they are to wipe clean and they last longer than most ordinary strings.

String Gauge

This refers to the thickness of an acoustic guitar string (diameter), which normally informs you of the tone as well as the feel you should expect.

Standard sets of strings that are currently sold in the market range from super light to heavy. String gauge matters a lot since it can effectively transform the playability of your instrument.

Guitar strings can either be a light gauge, medium gauge, or heavy gauge. Light gauge usually starts at 0.12 and are considered the most suitable for most guitars.

Light gauge strings give the best compromise between tone production and volume. They feel natural when picked by bare fingers, fingerpicks, or flat-pick.

Medium gauge normally starts at 0.13 and they are considered ideal for guitarists who play hard with fingerpicks or flat-pick.

You can consider the medium gauge if you don’t need to bend the string much. Also, you must have an acoustic guitar that is steady enough to withstand the tension.

We consider medium gauge to be the finest choice for you, if you play bluegrass or if you are using jumbo-size and dreadnought instruments.

Heavy gauge starts at 0.014, and they are not favorites of most instruments. They tend to generate a lot of tension, which most flattop instruments cannot tolerate.

Balanced String Set

Now, that you have an understanding of string winding, material, coating, and gauge. It is time you choose a well-balanced string set.

The most renowned string brands offer a perfectly balanced set of strings for every gauge of strings that they sell.

A balanced set takes into account that wound strings at the same tension tend to have more flexibility as well as playability than plain strings.

Final Words

You now have more than enough information to help you choose a set of strings that will give you the best performance possible.

We would also like to advise you to try a slightly lighter or heavier set of strings than what you are currently using, and feel the difference in your playing style.

Different guitarists like different degrees of stiffness their fingers are subjected to when playing. Light gauges fret and bend easily, but they may lack tone and tuning stability.

Medium to heavy gauges tends to be more responsive to swift right-hand picking styles. This is so since they are tighter.
Overall, you may need to do some experimenting in order to find the most ideal set of strings for specific playing styles.

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