#1
I have a Fender 70's Reissue Stratocaster and I love it but I feel the tone is very thin and has no power to it. I use Ernie Ball Hybrid Slinkies (.009-.046) and was wondering whether a lower string gauge could help and if not, what an alternative would be to help me find a fuller tone. Any help is appreciated
Last edited by mnf50 at Apr 21, 2011,
#2
lower gauge would make it whinier, listen to SRV and see if you like that kind of tone, he used 13s for the most part, but you could start by switching to 10-52s Light top/Heavy bottom
#3
also, d'addario has a pure nickel .10-.48 set that might work well as a transition gauge
#4
Like McDank said, using thinner strings will make it sound tinnier. Not the direction you want. Use thicker strings to get beefier tone. Don't be surprised if you get addicted to the tone you can achieve with different string gauges though. I'd say you should try a set of 11s or 10-52s first.
Always tin your strings.

_____

Don't be afraid to be honest.
Last edited by Gargoyle2500 at Apr 21, 2011,
#5
Quote by Gargoyle2500
Like McDank said, using thinner strings will make it sound tinnier. Not the direction you want. Use thicker strings to get beefier tone. Don't be surprised if you get addicted to the tone you can achieve with different string gauges though. I'd say you should try a set of 11s or 10-52s first.


I meant to say heavier strings instead of lower . Would I have to get it set up again so that the guitar can cope with the extra tension?
#6
If you change by at least two sizes then definitely, if you only change by one gauge you might not have to get it set up. Just keep an eye on your neck relief.

Another thing: since heavier strings are tighter at the same pitch, their vibrations won't be as wide. Might be able to lower your action a tad if you're so inclined.
#7
Thicker strings = fundamental tone comes through more, lose some overtones and harmonics
Thinner strings = opposite

Even then it's not much of a difference unless you jump quite a bit. .10 to .11, .48 to .52, that sort of thing.

I think it's much more important to use strings you find easiest and most comfortable to play on. Your tone can be changed in a ton of different ways but playability can't be changed so easily. Thicker strings doens't just mean mroe tension when bending, it also means abig lump under your finger tips, it means the action has to be raised a little bit, the bridge will need to be adjusted and if you jump up to .11s or higher you'll need to have the nut permanently cut for the bigger string size.

Alternatively you could raise your pickups a little, replace the bridge saddles with graph tech string saver saddles or replace the bridge sustain block with a bigger one. Any of those will warm up the tone. Do all of them and you'll lose most of the treble.
#8
be warned tho if you put 13's on that guitar at standard pitch it's going to be a bear to bend. SRV tuned down a half step. Loosens the tension. I've used all guages. I keep going back to 10's. 9's are def too thin for my taste, however... After using sooooo many guages I can't say my tone has changed so much people would notice. I notice it a bit but.... So much tone is in your fingers and pick attack. I've heard many people play 13's and it sounds thin and brittle. You also have to know how to get warmth out of the guitar.

+1 on pure nickel strings!!

--m
www.knobtwiddler.net
#9
So to acquire a more SRV-esque tone what would the best option be, pick-up upgrade? bridge upgrade etc?
#10
there are a lot of reasons he sounds like he does. First and foremost it was him!! He could play any guitar and any amp and it would have been awesome. He used many different amps in the studio. To get you in the ballpark I would tune down a half step and play really hard. He dug into those strings which is also why he used big strings. He would even break a lot of those!! He also liked TS9 type tube screamers through cranked amps. That means overdrive ontop of a saturating amp. And I believe he used a medium guage pick. Vintage voiced pickups would be a good match as well.

You could still have all of these things and not get the tone. The gear is a small to medium part of it.
#11
Quote by mnf50
I meant to say heavier strings instead of lower . Would I have to get it set up again so that the guitar can cope with the extra tension?


You would if you want it near perfect. Adjusting the action might not be necessary, Adjusting the truss rod 1/16 of a clockwise turn and adjusting the intonation would be though. And on the subject of filing the guitar nut to accept the larger string size, Its not a huge deal so long as its done right. Nuts (As well as frets) Are replaceable.
Always tin your strings.

_____

Don't be afraid to be honest.
#12
Quote by mnf50
So to acquire a more SRV-esque tone what would the best option be, pick-up upgrade? bridge upgrade etc?


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#13
SRV also used 10,000 boutique amps that arent made anymore, leslie speakers whidh rpetty much arent around, and a bunch of stuff.

so....basically nobody is ever going to perfectly replicate SRV tone ever again