Unlike acoustic and classical strings, I've never seen real big differences between electric guitar strings, and I've tried them all. About the only ones I don't like are Ernie Ball's, because they sound tinny. There are differences between the others, but they're pretty minor, all things considered.
I used to use Dean Markleys for years because they were pretty consistent and felt good. Right now I'm burning through a couple of boxes of D'Addarios I got cheap. I guess there's a little room to consider them to be a little bland, but they're really not vastly different from anything else on the market. I think one that stands out as somewhat unique are the John Pearse nickel wounds.
where do you get them.. I found some once and liked them... in the mean time I have use BOOMERS for about 30 years .. they are my go to .. I use D'addario once in a while for recording on the les paul to mellow it a little ..but not too often..
I like to by strings from a co that only does strings
DR's. Been using them since they came out. No string last as long IMO. The elixers last long, but they seem stiffer to me and they are too expensive. I can get 2 packs of DR's for the price of 1 elixer. I personally prefer the Hi beams. They are a little bright at first but after they wear they sound like new tite fits new strings for 4 months with hard playing.
I am speaking as a recording engineer. I am somewhat specialised in acoustic music. Myself and several of my associates have noticed problems with Elixir and all the other coated strings.
When it comes to mix time, there is a real stuggle to achieve a sound. Often one ends up with compromise. One has to try to remove the Elixir quack with eq but not castrate the instrument. It doesn't work. My guess is that the higher harmonics go increasing out of tune with coated strings. Like bells and tuned percussion. After all it is no longer a rod of steel, but one sheathed in a Teflon tube! i.e. non-homogenous material, likely to have a non linear response. One of my associates, an engineer and a fine guitar player, refuses to record these strings, due to the certainty of problems later. I am there also.
Best Regards, DD Sound Sound - Homepage
I'm not a fan of Elixir either. Too expensive for what you get.
I've used Dean Markley strings for years and I like them a lot. Used to use D'Addario for years, but they seem to break too easily now. I'm not sure what they changed, but they last for anything on my instruments now.
Never tried DR's, but I may after all these recommendations.
the coated strings kill your tone. Most strings are pretty much the same since there are only a few factories that actually make them. Many companies use the same strings just different packaging. I really don't think there is a best. I think it's what's best for you. My old gtr tech says D&R strings suck. I use to use them and liked the feel of them but he said they will not intonate properly. I don't know how true that is but I did stop using them and my gtr does seem to play better with just Ernie balls, d'addario or markleys. I will say my old tech is the guy. having built gtrs for Yes, Nuno and others, I think he knows his stuff. but I have no of knowing since I just play and don't build or 'luthier'
anyway a d&r thread from another site w/ conflicting opinions. Just some useless info
elixers are decent strings that are overpriced and have a good marketing team. They don't last as long as most strings half the price. They don't sound any better than the strings that are half the price as well. They just advertise well and are smart with their pricing.
I use ernie balls because they are cheap and make the gauges i need. They aren't the best strings, but they are easy to find and are great for the stage.
My favorite strings are DR. They used to be $5 a pack. They sound really great and last forever.
Everly strings are way better than anything I ever used. You don't see them at GC and many music stores. They're more of a behind the scenes type company. I know a lot of professionals use them. Clapton,Tom Petty etc. After playing them I'd never go back to GHS,Ernie Ball or anything else. Try them and you'll see what I mean.
+1 richie! Thomastik-Infeld are the best electric (and everything else) strings on the planet. They have been making strings for 300 years before any of us were even playing. And then they started to make guitar strings in the '90's, the 1990's...sorry i get really passionate about strings. Keep your ernie balls and shmelixir. D'addarios are good for about 2 weeks. Thomastiks will last for 6 months or more and still intonate and have more harmonics with brown gravy coating on them played by arthiritic hack like me. Sure they cost $40 once every 6 months compared to $10 every 2 weeks.