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#1
Hi, so i have used d'addario string all time all time i've been playing guitar, and i have concidered mooving to ernie ball, since so many use them...
What are the pros and cons in feel, tone, price, lifetime etc..?
What do you use, and why?
#2
Why not try different brands...?

I use...

Acoustic - Elixrs or DR's. Mainly Elixrs as I like them to last aaaages, but I gig with DR's as I prefer the sound I get with them.

Electric - D'addario XL Chromes - flatwounds. I use them on my tele (just to clarify, not on an archtop) because I lurve the sound they make, they make slide playing sound lovely, and I can get a sound closer to the tin strings that slide players sometimes used if I put the treble up high, and because they make playing incredibly comfortable. They also don't get all the crap in the grooves that you would in roundwounds.

Both the brands you mentioned are good, but it comes down to preference - buy an ernie ball pack and try them.

I've tried at least 10 different brands to get the one I like most. Buy a few different packs, and each time it's time to change strings, mix it up, and see what you like most.
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Last edited by Banjocal at Sep 5, 2011,
#4
I always used to use Ernie Ball, and I thought they worked great for basic rock stuff, blues, some metal, but I found they never had enough crunch and articulation that I craved. D'addario seemed to do the trick, also, I've been thinking about moving on to DR. Never tried them before, I don't mean to make this thread about me, but has anybody had any positive experience with DR?
#5
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I don't mean to make this thread about me, but has anybody had any positive experience with DR?

They're lovely. And don't worry: it's better than making a separate thread. Just post any questions you have in the relevant thread.
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Last edited by Banjocal at Sep 5, 2011,
#6
I've tried pretty much any well known brand out there, DR have always been my favorite. Ernie Ball is one brand i've never cared for string-wise but my god do they make awesome guitars.
#7
Be prepared to start buying more strings if you do switch to Ernie Ball. They break really often and I have had the high-e break while stringing them up for the first time two times. I wasn't even over tightening or tightening them really fast.
#8
Quote by NothingRocks
Be prepared to start buying more strings if you do switch to Ernie Ball. They break really often and I have had the high-e break while stringing them up for the first time two times. I wasn't even over tightening or tightening them really fast.

I've used the same strings for months on end. Mine never break and it's what I use on almost all of my guitars (and have used for about 3 years).
#10
I've used GHS Boomers mostly, sometimes switching out for Ernie Ball if the store doesn't have the particular gauge I'm looking for. I use Elixir or Cleartone on acoustic because they're coated.
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#12
i like the new ernie ball coated "titanium" acoustic strings. they're nice.

but for electric, i was a big ernie ball 10s fan, now a d'addario fan.
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#13
I love using Ernie Ball strings on electrics because of the custom gauges they have. They sound pretty good (i got some fender ones this week and there's no comparison), aren't too expensive, and come in a sealed package. I've only had one string (B) break on me in the 6yrs of playing. I however do use D'addario strings on my acoustic because the coated ones seem to have a good tone for a rather long time. The only problem is that they can be kind of expensive at $12 or so each.
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#14
Quote by Banjocal
They're lovely. And don't worry: it's better than making a separate thread. Just post any questions you have in the relevant thread.

Well i have tried the DR alexi laiho (11-56) on my guitar in drop C. I didn't like the sound at all. It had no brighness at all. It it suposed to be this way??
#15
I have always played with d'Addario, but the Ernie Ball aren't bad, but I prefer the Dean Markley. Well, it's your choice, play with those you prefer. And Dave Mustaine plays with d'Addario.
#16
D'addarios are good cuz they're relatively cheaper in comparison to others...
I've tried Ernie balls but for some reason, I didn't find them that nice.

Notable mentions include:
Dunlop strings (dunno why, for some reason they feel good)
Elixir strings (because they don't rust that fast)

Buy a couple different ones and see how it feels. At least if music shop runs out of the ones you want, you'll have fall-backs
Last edited by ThatGuy_17 at Sep 5, 2011,
#17
Quote by Usernames sucks
Well i have tried the DR alexi laiho (11-56) on my guitar in drop C. I didn't like the sound at all. It had no brighness at all. It it suposed to be this way??

those are a set catered to what he wants: the standard sets are not like that. I wasn't aware he had a set though
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#18
EB's
pros: feel great to play on, sound fantastic when they're new
cons: don't have that great new string sound for very long

D'addarios:
pros: sound good for longer
cons: never sound or feel as good as some new EB's

IMO
#19
Give them a try, why not?
I've also been playing D'Addario almost since I started playing, but every now and then I've wanted to try other strings. I've found some nice ones, but I've always come back to D'Addario.

The only pro I found of EB's is their feel; when new, they feel awesome, and are more elastic and easier to play than other strings. The cons are that they rust faster (though not as much as some people say; a set of D'Addario lasts me 3 months, EB's last me 2 months), and they break in and lose that "new" sound too fast (in a couple of days at most, in my experience).

I've tried D'Addario, Ernie Ball, Dean Markley, GHS, DR, Rotosound and Elixir, and so far I've enjoyed D'Addario the most. In my opinion, DR and Rotosound are slightly better maybe, but they're very hard to come by and quite expensive where I live. Not worth it for such a small difference.
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#20
They are pretty much the same feal IMO
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#21
I had D'addario for ages, but then my stepfather bought me a set of Ernie Balls a a gift, since he didn't knew that they were thousand of gauges and brands. the all broke in a month. since then, im stuck with d'addario. and I'm happy
#22
Hate to say this, but you're not going to get a "correct" answer from anyone. Different strings react differently to different body compositions. Basically, everyone is going to have a different answer of what strings are good or bad and why.

The only way to find out what strings work for you is to try them all out yourself.
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#24
I used D'Addarios for a while and tried out some DRs on a whim. I haven't gone back. They feel like they're made better and have a better tone.

My friend plays EB strings. They're alright, just not really my thing.
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#25
My personal experience with Ernie Ball has been terrible. All three sets of Ernie Balls that I have ever used, within a period of about 3 years, has broken on me due to manufacturer defects in less than an hour. All 3 sets that I've had were brought from different stores, and several months apart. Note: I've been using Dadarrios on the same guitar for about a year now, never broken a string yet, so I doubt it was anything wrong with the guitar.

Either I'm the unluckiest person in the world, or Ernie Ball has terrible quality control. You might be luckier though, but personally I go with Dadarrio. There's nothing wrong with trying out different strings though.
#26


Recently started using these and have never looked back. Reasonably low tension for the gauge, long life, nice mellow warm sound and the same price/a little cheaper than shop bought strings even though I have to get them from Germany. Joe Perry uses these when he can.

Oh and I used to use D'addario XLs and had a little fling with Ernie Ball (yellow packet). Pyramids make mincemeat of these lightweights.
Last edited by Duv at Sep 5, 2011,
#27
Quote by zincabopataurio
My personal experience with Ernie Ball has been terrible. All three sets of Ernie Balls that I have ever used, within a period of about 3 years, has broken on me due to manufacturer defects in less than an hour. All 3 sets that I've had were brought from different stores, and several months apart. Note: I've been using Dadarrios on the same guitar for about a year now, never broken a string yet, so I doubt it was anything wrong with the guitar.

Either I'm the unluckiest person in the world, or Ernie Ball has terrible quality control. You might be luckier though, but personally I go with Dadarrio. There's nothing wrong with trying out different strings though.


Wow that sucks. I use EB Hybrid Slinky 9-46 on 2 guitars, havent had one break in a long time (since I was using dd's! ).

Also using a Dimebag set of DR's in Eb standard. I ****ing hate them. Feel almost like tight fits. (no I didn't buy it because of the name, my buddy did, and gifted them.)
#28
I started out on D'Addario .9s for my first...9 months of playing, maybe? Then I went to Ernie Ball .9s for 3 or 4 months, then up to EB .10s for another 3 months. Then I decided I wanted a wound G(I decided I was only going to play rhythm and wanted a big tone, plus I had jittery hands at the time), so I went back to D'Addario, only I got .12s this time(playing in E Standard without having it set up, no less). I proceeded to use .12s in E Standard with my action about 6mm above the fretboard at the 12th fret for well over a year until my Schecter came in strung with D'Addario .9s in June. I got it restrung with D'Addario .10s a month later and that was 3 weeks ago, I've got a set of .10s sitting on my flanger's case right now and I've got a Floyd so I won't be changing the gauge or brand anytime soon. xD My bass had GHS Boomers of some sort on it from when my brother used it but I put D'Addario XL .45-105s on it when the strings needed changing and I was too lazy to call him up and ask him what he had put on it.

While I found the EB .9s didn't break as much as the D'Addario ones(this could also stem from the fact that for my 6 months of playing I only restrung every 3 months, and I've only ever had 3 strings break, 2 of these being during this time, but all 3 times they broke they were D'Addario .9s), they have a lot more twang to them IMO, to the point where it's unpleasant(this is also coming from someone who generally has his presence maxed and his treble at 3 o'clock). o_o I'd like to try some GHS Boomers, but I can't find .10s around here, only .9s. xD
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#29
It'll be all preference when it comes to strings.

I'm usually a D'addario-only guy, but they didn't have any D'addarios in the gauge I wanted for my Schecter so I bought some EB not even slinkys. They're decent.. but in all honestly D'addarios seem to last a little longer and keep their brightness longer.

Really no difference in feel, TBH.
#30
i really dont get all this BS.

all strings made the same way pretty much feel the same. daddario, ball, etc...they are all nickel round wounds. they will feel like nickel round wounds.

balls are easier to bend, daddarios have this. BS. strings of the same make and quality give a similar feel and tone.

if you have flat wounds, they are like flat wounds. steels are like steels. hex cores are like hex cores.

different string brands DO affect tone. 90% of the time is almost not noticable. If you are like elixer and have crazy coating on it, or are like blue steels and are cryo treated, sure there is a slighlty different tone. same goes for materials, core shapes, wrap shapes, etc.

but ernie balls vs basic daddarios....there is almost no difference. if your breaking strings, its your guitar, or perhaps you were in the moment, got crazy, broke a string, and its you - your superstition blames the string.

play. change your strings when they need to be changed. buy the guage and type that suits you. tweak preferences based on slight tonal differences. play and shut up.

end of rant.
Last edited by ikey_ at Sep 5, 2011,
#32
exactly. i mean stuff happens. your crazy into the moment, you messed up and went a bit hard on the trem, o heck, you just got a bad string.

but if your break strings on the reg, its not the brand. its something on your end.

and ive never put round wound string on my guitar and been like..."whoa, these daddarios are magical compared to balls!!!!!!" all feel the same. elixers (or other coated strings) are different cause of the coating.
#33
i use D'Addarios exp great strings.. i been using EBs but they had the exp on sale.. wow i will never go back to EB...
#34
I use Ernie Balls. They feel really good, especially when you first put them on. I once had a pair of D'Addario .12s on my guitar and they alright. Now I'm playing on Super Slinkies (.9s) and I love them. EB sent a few free packs of RPS strings and I can't wait t use those. So it's basically person preference.
#35
it's up to you. I used D'Addario forever then decided to try Ernies, I didn't like em. They oxidized too fast. Went back to D'addario and haven't had a problem since
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#36
I myself wondered this today. I decided I'm going to try a pack of EB when my D'Addario's begin to lose their sound.
#37
my personal favorite strings are without question DR's. But honestly, I don't like EB's that much except for the not even slinkies (.012-.056) because they have a plain G in a thick enough string for drop tuning.
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#40
i feel like balls and daddarios are teh same with longevity and durability.

best strings ive ver use in those catagories are blue steels and elixers...but i dont like coated strings on my electric.
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