classical guitar strings

How to choose classical guitar strings

When it comes to choosing classical guitar strings, different factors such as the material or the tension, among others, have an influence. Although the final choice is a very personal one, we are going to analyse these factors to see how they influence the sound.

 

Classical guitar strings

Materials

 The most common material used in Spanish guitar strings is nylon, although recently other materials such as carbon, titanium, etc. have started to be used...

Nylon in premiums provides a warm, overtone-rich sound while other materials such as titanium provide a brighter sound. Some manufacturers also use black nylon to give a less bright sound.

 
The bass strings are mainly made with a nylon core covered by a metal such as bronze, which provides a brighter and more powerful sound, or silver plated copper for guitarists who are looking for a rounder and more controlled sound. This should be taken into account because if your guitar, due to the characteristics of the woods it is made of, has a very bright character, it will be even brighter if you use strings covered with bronze.
 
In order to increase the durability of the strings, some manufacturers offer strings coated with synthetic materials in order to protect them from perspiration and prevent them from rusting. These strings have a higher price but last up to 5 times longer without losing sound, so it is something to take into account.

 

classical guitar strings

String tension for Spanish guitar

 Classical guitar strings can have different tensions and, depending on this, their sound and feel will vary. As with acoustic guitar strings, the thicker the gauge, the better the tension, the better the sound, although, of course, it is also more difficult to press the string on the fretboard.
 
The most common tensions are: low, medium and high. Some string manufacturers also offer hybrid sets using different tensions in the trebles than in the basses.
 

Low tension: as they have less tension they have less volume. They are ideal for beginners as they have a softer feel and are also a good option if your guitar has a damaged top or bridge and cannot withstand a lot of tension.

Medium tension: this is the most commonly used option. The volume is higher than in low tension sets and they are comfortable to the touch. Their sound is balanced.

High tension: Ideal for low action guitars. Its sound is more powerful and for advanced guitarists its tension is not usually a problem when stepping on the strings. Fretting is significantly reduced.

Spanish guitar strings

When to change the ropes

The durability of your strings will depend mainly on the time of use and the ambient humidity. If you play many hours a day, logically, you will have to change them more frequently. What you must be clear about is that they are not only changed when they break. You should be aware of their sound. When the strings become dull or frequently go out of tune, they need to be changed.

Which ropes to choose?

Our recommendation, after having seen the options on the market regarding materials and tensions, is that you try different materials to see which one works best with your guitar. There is no one material or tension for everyone just as no two guitars are the same. Some of the most popular brands are: Savarez, D'Addario, Royal Classics, Knobloch, ...

After testing several sets of strings, which one is your favourite?

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