Comments on several string sets

Choice of classical guitar strings and technical issues connected with their use.
Flapjack
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Location: Virginia, U.S.A.

Comments on several string sets

Post by Flapjack » Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:19 am

I have been experimenting with different strings for a while and thought I would post my perceptions of them in case it might help others. I have learned a lot by reading what others have had to say and this message serves as a feeble attempt to give a little back. I am an experience guitar player but relatively new (last year or two) to playing classical. My guess is that I am an advanced beginner to weak intermediate. The guitar I play is a Cordoba C9 with a cedar top. I have left each set of reviewed strings on for at least a month, most of them longer, and I am listing them in the order I tried them. Intonation on all of them up and down the neck was great. It is never easy describing sound, but here goes...

1) Savarez 500CJ - bass strings are bold sounding and do not feel very stiff considering their published tension, treble strings are loud, punchy, percussive, bright, and perhaps a bit cold sounding.

2) D'Addario EJ44 - bass strings are warm and deep, not very loud, and slightly floppier feeling that the 500CJ, treble strings are warm, a bit thuddy, and not very loud.

3) Savarez 500CR - bass strings are bold/bright sounding and just a little less stiff feeling than the 500CJ, treble strings are also less stiff feeling than the 500CJ and a bit less percussive. Overall, these strings sound a lot like the 500CJ with less tension and not much perceptible loss in volume.

4) La Bella 2001 Hard - bass strings are warm, feel floppy compared to any of the above sets, and are a bit dull sounding even when fresh, treble strings are bright but less cold sounding than either Savarez set. Very musical sounding to these ears.

5) D'Addario EJ45 - bass strings are deep sounding but have a nice punch and brightness to them when needed. They are maybe just a bit stiffer feeling than the La Bella's, but easier to fret than the other sets, treble strings are warm, velvety, and sweet sounding (similar to the La Bellas), but are also punchy when needed with some brightness. Also, more than any other trebles, these seem dynamic in that can be quite quiet or loud when you dig in. The Savarez sets were the opposite by comparison, loud but not much variation in volume whether you played gently or hard. The EJ45 are still on the guitar. Overall, they are my favorite so far.

Next up...I have a set of EJ46 and Augustine Red Classic, not sure which I will try first.

Guero
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Location: Baltic Sea, Germany

Re: Comments on several string sets

Post by Guero » Wed Aug 23, 2017 8:26 am

It always amazes me how many people here like the EJ45.
Maybe the string formula differs from country to country and continent to continent? :)
I don't say they're bad string but everytime I tried them I prefered the set before and the one after them.

But - like so many other things- it's just a matter of taste.

DevonBadger
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Location: Devon, UK

Re: Comments on several string sets

Post by DevonBadger » Wed Aug 23, 2017 9:13 am

Guero wrote:
Wed Aug 23, 2017 8:26 am
It always amazes me how many people here like the EJ45.
Maybe the string formula differs from country to country and continent to continent? :)
I don't say they're bad string but everytime I tried them I prefered the set before and the one after them.

But - like so many other things- it's just a matter of taste.
I agree. I find them dull and uninspiring.

The one good thing I can say though is that the bass strings never need retuning, they just stay back on all the time. Sadly not a sufficient reason to use them!

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Jorge Oliveira
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Location: Cascais, Portugal

Re: Comments on several string sets

Post by Jorge Oliveira » Wed Aug 23, 2017 10:01 am

Flapjack wrote:
Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:19 am
...

Next up...I have a set of EJ46 and Augustine Red Classic, not sure which I will try first.
You will like the EJ46FF, I'm sure. I'm using them on my Aria A558. But you should add to your list the Konobloch Actives Carbon CX, High Tension strings. I haven't tried that many strings so far, but I'll stay with high tension ones and the Konobloch Actives are the best I've had so far. The sound they produce in my Hermanos Camps Master, both the profound basses and bright trebles, are truly amazing.
Aria A558, 655 mm, Cedar, 1987, Nagoya, Japan
Hermanos Camps Master, 650 mm, Cedar, 2014 (Nº 3), Spain

MrF1
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Joined: Sun May 07, 2017 11:34 pm

Re: Comments on several string sets

Post by MrF1 » Wed Aug 23, 2017 10:29 am

Thanks so much for the reviews....I appreciate how you evaluated the same qualities/characteristics of each string set. I'm also a steel-string guy who transitioned to classical guitar about ten years ago. After a lot of string experimentation, I'm one of those folks who always returns to the good old EJ45s. I do swap the third string out with a Savarez Alliance, but that's my only adjustment. Thanks again for the reviews!

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souldier
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Re: Comments on several string sets

Post by souldier » Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:26 pm

My personal fav combo is probably Savarez Corum bass strings with La Bella 2001 MT Trebles. EJ45's I found boring in the past, but I recently revisited them a few months ago and honestly were quite good.
"Success grants its rewards to a few, but is the dream of the multitudes.
Excellence is available to all, but is accepted only by a few." - Christopher Parkening

Flapjack
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Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2017 9:30 pm
Location: Virginia, U.S.A.

Re: Comments on several string sets

Post by Flapjack » Wed Aug 23, 2017 2:01 pm

I too was surprised at how much I liked the EJ45 because of what I have read in this forum. I forgot to mention that I am also able to get a better sounding, more controlled vibrato out of them than the others. Again, I remind all of you that I am not an advanced classical guitar player, so my perceptions/opinions perhaps should not carry much weight. I can understand why others find them boring as they are relatively mellow sounding, but I also think there is a richness/depth and sweetness to them that comes with this that is pleasing to these ears.

mts132
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Location: Carlisle, Pennsylvania USA

Re: Comments on several string sets

Post by mts132 » Thu Aug 24, 2017 1:09 am

Does anyone else use the composite EJ45C?

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