I'm looking for a set of strings, but I'm unsure which to buy...so far, I've narrowed it down to the DR hi-beam nickel strings, or the d'addario exl120+ strings. Or if neither are very good, please recommend some? And I'm currently playing on gauge .009; will switching to .010 be significantly harder to bend/play? Thanks
Last edited by notverycreative at May 22, 2010,
You wont really notice a huge difference between .9 and .10

Other than that, strings are all preference my friend.
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There's a very slight difference... .10's are a bit harder to bend, but slightly easier on the fingers. I've got two guitars which have either .9's or .10's on them, and I always notice a difference when I switch between them.
I like d'addario cuz of the coloured ball ends, i collect them, some day i hope to make some guitar art masterpiece out of them. plus you get d'addario points (like koolaid points) that you can cash in for guitar string related prizes. its pretty sweet. these strings sound great. it started out as a small family buisiness in italy (apperently) and they are probably the most experienced string makers around. their nickel wound strings never rust for me. and they always last a long time. Another option for you is ernie ball strings they dont go well with my skin/sweat's chemical composition but allot of people love them, pretty much all my guitar friends play ernie ball strings they are just great strings in general and they look a bit brighter and more polished as well they are a little rougher feeling, they give a nice scrapey celloey paul gilbert type sound when picking. Dean markley strings are great too but i have no experience with them. i would stay away from wierd brand named strings.

as far as gauge i played on a 12 gauge string set for a while. they were harder to bend but they were what i started off playing when i FIRST started playing after my first string change.

i play on 10's now. they are really good strings great to bend, if i went down to a 9 idk they would be a bit easier to bend but i liek a bit of a thicker string. if your used to 9's stick to 9's ! smaller gauge strings are the best for your playing technique and your tone as they are a bit better on harmonics in my opinion. but bigger gauge strings will deliver a bit more sustain and chug/ heavyness. smaller gauge strings also let you do more work with your fretting hand they will let you bring you own tone out of strings (thats hard to explain!)

dont go with any sort of coated string. unless your poor and never want to change your strings. i dont know about stainless steel strings but just stick with nickel wound.

IF you play jazz/jazz fusion and only if you play jazz i highly suggest you look into flat wound strings. they sound really dull and jazzy. they dont have as much of a twang to them... perfect for jazzy chords.

If you play any sort of blues, rock, or metal then only go with round wound as you will get no where near your desired tone out of flat wound strings.

hoped this helps.

like others have said. strings are preference. you need to try pretty much all of them to see what you like in a string. try things that are different. 10's may be a good idea. try ernie ball strings one time then d'addario the next. start with ernie balls cuz they are everyones sortof favourite. then go with different brands. good luck
Last edited by zappmi35 at May 22, 2010,
Depends on the guitar as well. I play with .11s on my SG because I play ryhthm and get a warmer sound from them. Like Vypor said, it's all preference.
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I use ernie balls. 9's on my ESP and 11's on my gibson
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